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Ulster Bank Headquarters at Georges Quay, Dublin. Shutterstock/Dirk Hudson
Banking

Ulster Bank to write to personal credit card holders to remind them to close accounts

Ulster Bank credit cards will no longer work from March 2023.

ULSTER BANK HAVE launched a campaign to encourage its customers to close their accounts and find a new bank before March.

The bank announced its withdrawal from the Irish market in February and staff have begun outreach with customers to assist them as they move their accounts.

It has also confirmed that it will write to approximately 75,000 personal credit card holders next month, providing them with six months’ notice to choose an alternative provider, move their recurring transactions and close their credit card.

Ulster Bank credit cards will no longer work from March 2023 and the bank has recommended that customers leave €30 to cover the Government Stamp Duty which will be applied upon closure of the account.

The latest data from the Banking and Payments Federation of Ireland (BPFI) shows that 71,000 personal current accounts were opened in the four weeks ending 8 July.

This figure is up from 56,000 in the previous four weeks and more than double the total in the four weeks ending 15 April.

The figures indicated that current account customers of Ulster Bank and KBC, which will also withdraw from the market, are heeding advice to switch banks to avoid being left without banking services.

Research from mid July by the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has indicated that less than half of these banks’ customers (44%) have already opened a new account.

Overall, 20% have decided on a new provider but are yet to open an account, 15% had started to compare providers but not chosen one yet and 20% had taken no action.

Ulster Bank Chief Executive Jane Howard said:

“While six months will be enough time for the majority of our customers to find a new provider, I recognise that some customers may have difficulty repaying their balance within six months and we will continue to work with these customers on an individual basis to assist them.

 “If any customer needs additional support, I’d strongly encourage them to contact us as soon as they can either in branch, or on the phone. We want to ensure that customers who need additional help are supported at this time.

“Our colleagues are working hard to support customers through all channels and we have changed branch services to allow branch colleagues to focus on supporting customers who are moving their current and deposit accounts.”

As part of Ulster Bank’s closure around 400 to 450 of its 2,500 employees will transfer to Permanent TSB.

The deal will also see Permanent TSB receive 25 of Ulster Bank’s 146 branches and its performing non-tracker mortgage loans

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