Some current accounts come with extra benefits, such as travel insurance, car breakdown cover and mobile phone insurance, packaged together for a monthly fee.
Packaged accounts can be great value, particularly those at the top of our table below, but only if you’re actually using the benefits.
All accounts compared below offer:
- worldwide family annual travel insurance, including winter sports (exclusions apply)
- car breakdown for roadside assistance, home start and nationwide recovery. We've also noted which cover you in Europe, or provide alternative travel or accommodation while your vehicle is being repaired
|MOBILE PHONE COVER|
|Account||OVERALL SCORE||Fee/month||Fee/year|| |
Upper age limit
|European cover|| |
Alternative travel or accommodation
|Policy score||Mobile cover||Policy score|
Nationwide asks you to pay an additional premium of £65 per account at age 70 for travel cover, however, there is no age limit beyond this, subject to medical screening.
The Co-operative Bank 'Everyday Extra'
We have calculated its score assuming the account holder is opted into free add-on 'Everyday Rewards'.
HSBC 'Select and Cover'
HSBC offers insurance bundles to existing customers - under 'Select and Cover' you can choose three types of cover for £19.50 a month. Our analysis focuses on mobile, breakdown and travel cover.
Barclays 'Travel Pack' and 'Tech Lite'
Barclays lets customers add various Packs to their current accounts. Here we have compared Travel Pack
Virgin Money 'Club M'
Account holders are eligible for a linked ‘Club M Saver’ paying 1.56% AER.
|Halifax 'Ultimate Reward' |
Comes with free home emergency assistance (up to £250 for repairs including the call-out charge, plus £100 towards emergency overnight accommodation).
Barclays 'Travel' and 'Tech'
Barclays lets customers add various Packs to their current accounts. Here we've compared Travel Plus
Barclays 'Travel Plus' and 'Tech'
Barclays lets customers add various Packs to their current accounts. Price made up of 'Travel Plus(£18/month) and Tech Pack (£14.50/month). Travel Plus includes six visits to airport lounges and airport parking/hotel
Monzo Bank 'Premium' (with Advance breakdown cover)
Monzo Premium costs £15/month but we've added Advance personal breakdown cover (as a driver or passenger) for £8.50/month to make it comparable with other packaged accounts. Advance cover for one vehicle (any driver) instead is £7.50/month. This account pays You earn 1.50% AER on up to £2,000 and regular Pots (not Savings Pots). Premium account holders can withdraw up to £600 abroad every 30 days without incurring any fees (standard account holders pay 3% after £250).
Lloyds Bank 'Platinum'
You can add 'Club Lloyds' to choose a 'Lifestyle' benefit each year (eg 6 free cinema tickets) for £3/month (fee waived if you pay in £1,500/month).
Bank of Scotland 'Platinum'
We have calculated its score assuming the account holder is opted into the free add-on 'Vantage'.
Monzo Bank 'Premium' (with Standard breakdown cover)
Monzo Premium costs £15/month but we've added Standard personal breakdown cover (as a driver or passenger) for £5.75 to make it comparable with other packaged accounts. Standard cover for one vehicle (any driver) instead is £4.75/month. This account pays You earn 1.50% AER on up to £2,000 and regular Pots (not Savings Pots). Premium account holders can withdraw up to £600 abroad every 30 days without incurring any fees (standard account holders pay 3% after £250).
NatWest 'Reward Platinum'
NatWest asks you to pay an additional premium of £75 per account holder at age 70 for travel cover, however, there is no age limit beyond this, subject to medical screening. Earn £4/month back in Rewards (you must have two Direct Debits) plus an extra £1/month if you log in to the mobile app.
RBS 'Reward Platinum'
RBS asks you to pay an additional premium of £75 per account holder at age 70 for travel cover, however, there is no age limit beyond this, subject to medical screening. Earn £4/month back in Rewards (you must have two Direct Debits) plus an extra £1/month if you log in to the mobile app.
Correct at 15 July 2022
Table notes: We surveyed 4,438 members of the general public in September to October 2021. Sample sizes for our survey as follows: Bank of Scotland - 87, Barclays Bank - 383, Cumberland BS - 60, First Direct - 168, Halifax - 367, HSBC - 362, Lloyds Bank - 455,Metro Bank - 82, Monzo Bank - 81, Nationwide - 414, NatWest - 440, Revolut - 79, Royal Bank of Scotland - 117, Santander - 440, Smile - 80, Starling Bank - 83, The Co-operative Bank - 112, Triodos Bank - 75, TSB - 136, Virgin Money - 250.
Account score: The account score is weighted by the annual cost and extras such as interest-free overdrafts or cashback and credit interest (30%), quality of travel insurance (30%), car break down,(30%) and mobile phone insurance (10%).
Notes: [a] All accounts offer worldwide family annual travel insurance, including winter sports (exclusions apply) [b] All accounts offer roadside assistance, home start and nationwide recovery [c] You must pay a fee to extend travel cover beyond this age limit.
How we calculated our account scores
The account score is weighted by the annual cost and extras such as interest-free overdrafts or cashback and credit interest (30%), quality of travel insurance (30%), car breakdown cover (30%) and mobile phone insurance (10%).
Barclays 'Tech Pack' and 'Tech Pack Lite' are temporarily off sale. NatWest Group packaged accounts are only available to existing customers who upgrade.
First Direct, and TSB no longer offer packaged accounts to new customers.
A closer look at our top packaged bank accounts
Nationwide’s 'FlexPlus' account has been our top pick for many years and achieved the highest score (82%) once again in our latest analysis. It also has the lowest fee (£13 a month).
The account is less generous than it used to be - the building society increased the fee from £10 in September 2017 before removing various benefits in 2019, including the £250 interest-free overdraft and 3% interest on balances up to £2,500. The upper age limit for travel insurance has also gone down from 75 to 70, and older customers must now pay £65 to upgrade their account. But even with these changes, it still remains our top pick of the ‘all-rounders’, offering comprehensive cover in all three core insurance elements
Co-operative Bank Everyday Extra
The Co-operative Bank's 'Everyday Extra' packaged account isn't far behind with a score of 79%.
You can also add the free 'Everyday Rewards' scheme to earn up to £2 cashback and 5p per debit card purchase (max £3) for every month that you: pay in £800; pay out four direct debits; stay within the agreed overdraft limit; get paperless statements; and log into mobile or online banking.
Take a closer look at how these two accounts compare:
The Co-operative Bank has the edge over Nationwide because there’s no excess to pay on travel claims, while you must pay the first £50 of most Nationwide claims.
But both offer comprehensive annual travel insurance for worldwide trips (including the US). Other family members living at the same address are also covered.
The Co-operative Bank offers decent cover for Covid-related claims, rated 'superior' in a recent Which? review, meaning the policy covers you for: emergency medical cover if you catch Covid while on holiday, claims if you test positive for Covid and have to cancel your trip; and cancellation claims if you are told to self-isolate.
But Nationwide achieved the highest 'complete' rating for Covid protection. This means that you can also claim for cancellation if you can't travel because the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office advises against travel to your destination (since you booked the trip) because of Covid, or because of regional or national restrictions on movement.
Most winter sports are also protected (up to age 64 only at The Co-operative Bank) though Nationwide asks you to take out a 'Hazardous Activities Upgrade' for Heli skiing and ice hockey.
Mobile phone insurance
Nationwide allows up to four claims a year for phones owned by you or your family members up to a value of £2,000 per claim, while The Co-operative Bank allows only two claims a year for one mobile phone per account holder up to a value of £1,500.
Both cover lost, stolen, damaged or faulty phones.
Excess levels range from £50 (damaged/broken) to £125 (for lost/stolen Apple devices) at Nationwide and a flat rate of £75 at The Co-operative Bank.
Car breakdown cover
We awarded full marks for Nationwide's comprehensive car breakdown cover, provided by AA.
This policy covers you at home and in Europe - for any any vehicle you travel in, whether you're a passenger or driver - and with no call-out limit. Joint account holders can cover two vehicles.
The Co-operative Bank offers similar levels of cover, though you are restricted to £150 per person (or £500 for a group, whichever is less) for alternative transport/accommodation and five call-outs per year.
- Read more: the best breakdown cover providers
Will packaged account insurance cover you?
Packaged accounts can offer a cheaper and more convenient way to insure yourself, but read the terms and conditions carefully.
Older travellers will need to watch out for age restrictions. Standard travel insurance upper limits range from 69 to 80.
NatWest/RBS and Nationwide will theoretically offer cover whatever your age - but only if you pay an additional fee when you reach 70. This is £75 per person at NatWest/RBS and £65 per account at Nationwide, meaning joint account holders only pay once. You’ll still need to disclose any medical conditions, which may or may not be covered.
If standalone travel insurance is expensive because of your age or health, a packaged account may actually be the cheapest option.
Check with your chosen bank first, though, as pre-existing medical conditions (PEMCs) aren’t covered automatically. You’ll need to declare these when you open the account and you may be asked to pay extra, or accept limited cover.
Insurers also ask to be informed of any material changes to your health, at which point they may re-screen you, which could result in the terms of cover changing or the premium going up.
- Read more: travel insurance and medical conditions
Limits on mobile phone claims and coverage
With mobile phone insurance, most banks will only cover your phone and limit claims to two a year, though Barclays and Nationwide are more generous.
Barclays Tech Pack will cover up to four mobile phones and unlimited gadgets if they cost up to £1,500. It allows unlimited claims for damage or breakdown, four claims for loss or theft of mobile phones, and four claims for any claims for gadgets. Nationwide protects multiple phones owned by you and family members living at the same address.
Ask your bank whether there are any other steps you need to take to qualify for the benefits, such as registering your smartphone online.
Limited car breakdown cover
Most banks offer unlimited car breakdown cover while HSBC, NatWest/RBS, and The Co-operative Bank limit you to five call-outs a year.
The lowest scoring banks (from Bank of Scotland, Halifax, Lloyds and Virgin Money) won't cover you for car hire or alternative transport/accommodation while your vehicle is being fixed.
Covid cover for travel
Don't assume your travel insurance will cover incidents, such as cancellation of your trip, that are related to Covid-19.
All of the banks in our packaged account table have been rated as offering at least what we rate as 'superior' cover for Covid-related claims. This means that you can claim for:
- emergency medical care if you catch Covid while abroad,
- cancellation if you test positive before your trip,
- and cancellation if you're instructed to self-isolate at home because you've been identified as a contact of someone who tested positive.
Three of the packaged accounts in our table got our higher 'complete' rating.
Find out which banks offer complete cover, what this means, and all our travel insurance scores in our best and worst travel insurance guide.
Is it worth paying for a packaged account?
Packaged accounts can be great value, particularly those at the top of our table, but only if you’re actually using the benefits.
And some of the 'benefits' just aren't that much use. So if you're thinking of opening a fee-charging bank account, or already have one, ask yourself these key questions:
- How many of the benefits do I really need?
- Does the insurance give me the right amount of cover?
- Can I get any of the benefits cheaper elsewhere?
- Am I already covered?
Take the time to see what else is on the market, making sure that you don’t have duplicate cover elsewhere – mobile phones and gadgets may be covered by your home insurance, for example, and some car insurers include breakdown cover as standard.
To avoid wasting your money, keep an eye on annual statements, and switch to a free account if you’re not making the most of the perks you’re paying for.
If you do have a packaged account, you should be given ample notice of any changes, as well as an annual eligibility statement prompting you to assess whether the account is still worth paying for.
Think about the way you run your account, for example, if you tend to use an overdraft from time to time, a standard account may save you money on fees and charges.
Should you open a joint packaged account?
Sharing a packaged account with someone you live with is a good way of getting more value from the account - apart from Monzo 'Premium', all of the accounts in our table can be held in joint names, meaning two people can be covered under the one fee.
Joint accounts aren't without risk - because you are both liable for any debts, regardless of who spends the money - and not all packaged accounts offer value for money.
- Read more: how to find the best joint bank account
Were you mis-sold a packaged bank account?
There are rules in place to prevent insurance mis-selling within fee-charging bank accounts.
These force providers to a) check whether you are eligible to claim under each policy and make sure you know that information; b) establish whether each policy is suitable for you and alert you if some aren't; and c) provide you with annual eligibility statements prompting you to check if the policies still fit your needs.
Here are some other things to watch out for:
- You were signed up without realising it Banks should not do this without your consent unless all customers on a previously free account are being switched to a packaged account.
- You are no longer eligible to claim if your circumstances change, for example, if you pass the maximum age limit to claim on a travel insurance policy, your provider should inform you of this.
- You have to activate the benefits before you can use them Check whether you need to do this when you open the account, otherwise you might find that your insurance is invalid and that you have been paying for something you can't use. If this wasn't explained to you and your insurance claim is rejected, you might have grounds for complaint.
If you think that the features of the packaged account weren't explained properly, or the benefits didn't apply to your circumstances, you might have been mis-sold the account.
First, lodge a complaint with your bank or building society. If after making a formal complaint, you disagree with their final decision, or if you don’t hear from them within eight weeks, you have the right to take your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service.