An Post launched a new current bank account in 2017 called the “Smart Current Account”. Their press release called it a “game changer” and highlighted the MoneyBack feature , claiming that customers could save €660 a year.
We have taken a closer look at this An Post account to find out more about the charges and the potential money back savings – but it doesn’t really look that good to us.
Monthly Charge – the account has a €5 a month maintenance charge which cannot be avoided . This works out at €60 a year and is the most expensive “maintenance fee” of any current account in Ireland .
On top of this there is a 60c charge for each use of an ATM or for withdrawing cash (Note – one withdrawal at the Post Office branch each week is free).
They charge 3% for non Euro purchases on their debit card – which is the highest in Ireland. See comparison of Debit Cards here.
You can see how these charges mount up and compare them to other bank accounts here in our Comparison of Bank Charges
The options for money back on your spending with this An Post account are fairly limited – with only a few selected retailers involved.
For example – you get 5% of your debit card spend at Lidl back (only if your order is over €25). You would need to spend €100 a month at Lidl to cover the maintenance fee. If you are already a regular shopper at Lidl it will be possible.
You can also get 10% of your SSE Airtricity bills back if you pay by direct debit from your An Post account. This could be worth on average about €160 a year on the typical dual fuel bill. BUT – you have to go on the standard rates with SSE to get this cashback – and you could easily save more than €160 on fuel bills in a year by going with a cheaper deal from another supplier. (See more here about Cheapest Energy Providers )
There are also moneyback offers with Elverys (8%) , Kennys Books (5%) , OutdoorLiving (5%) , Sunway (5%) – none of which will be regular shopping places for most people.
Overall – this An Post account seems to be a potentially expensive option. People on low incomes would be better off using the EBS current account combined with an account with N26 . (See Comparison)
(You can only apply for your An Post Smart Account in person at a Post Office.)