HSBC will soon allow their customers to access the Post Office counter network to complete simple basic transactions after they received a critical review by the Government. Almost all of the UK banks excluding Santander and HSBC allow their customers to make deposits and withdrawals via the post office.
Last year the consumer minister accused the two major banks of ‘holding out’ when it came to the convenient service and HSBC announced that it would change its policy due to an increase in customer demand. Last year they sang a different tune stating that less than 30% of their customers actually asked for the access.
Starting spring of next year about nine million First Direct and HSBC customers will now be able to head to all 11,500 Post Office Branches in the UK and check their balances, deposit cheques and cash, and withdraw money at their own will. These same customers can already do all of these tasks at the HSBC branches that are spread out across the UK, but the bank closed down 50 branches in 2011 and last year another 36 stating that there has been a reduced amount of demand on a local level.
There are 1,500 Post Office Branches which should help HSBC offer some more choices to their consumers. A bank spokesman stated that while it was one of the last to offer its customers the chance to offer banking services through the post branches, it is doing so because of customer demand.
He added that it is not clear why customers have changed their mind about their preferences. Consumer Focus suggested that four million High Street bank customers use the Post Office for their banking needs in a survey conducted by the watchdog group last summer.