Whether you are paid in pounds or in dollars, it is generally a good idea to open up a local bank account once you have moved.
Banking services offered are very similar to those in the US. Be aware that opening a bank account an take up to 8 weeks, so we would recommend doing this right away.
The major banks in the UK are:
- Barclays (www.barclays.com)
- HSBC (www.hsbc.co.uk)
- Lloyds TSB Bank (www.lloydstsb.com)
- National Westminster Bank (www.natwest.co.uk)
- Royal Bank of Scotland (www.rbs.co.uk)
Ask about receiving a debit card, credit card and cheques when you open an account. Most banks issue a “pin and chip” card in the form of Maestro, Mastercard or Visa. These can be used throughout the UK and Europe.
Writing cheques in the UK varies slightly from that in the US.
The following website shows you exactly how to write a cheque in the UK: http://www.moneymatterstome.co.uk/Interactive-workshops/WritingCheque.htm .