Advertisement

What is an offshore savings account?

An offshore savings account is, simply put, a savings account that is based outside the UK but usually still open to UK residents or expats. These accounts may be suitable for Brits living abroad or frequently travelling across different countries and currencies.

Advertisement

Filters Show


  • HSBC Logo
    HSBC Regular Saver (Preferential Rate) Depositor Protection logo
    Depositor Protection logo
    AER
    5.00%
    Account Type
    Offshore Fixed
    Notice / Term
    12 Month Bond
    Interest Paid
    On Maturity
    Opening Account
    Not Available Online Available At Branch Not Available By Mail Available By Telephone Not Available By Mobile
    Managing Account
    Available Online Available At Branch Not Available By Mail Available By Telephone Available By Mobile
    Rates
    Access
    Information
    Opening Restrictions
    Additional Information

    Rates

    Rate 5.00% paid at £25
    AER 5.00% paid at £25
    Interest Paid On Maturity
    Interest payment Interest can be paid away or compounded
    Min Opening Amount £25
    Max Investment £3,000
    Introductory bonus N/A

    Access

    Withdrawals Allowed
    Early Access Allowed
    Access Note
    Earlier access on closure only with Flexible Saver rate paid.
    Further Additions Allowed

    Information

    Min Age 18
    Max Age 0
    Taxation
    N/A

    Opening Restrictions

    Channel Island residents, Isle of Man residents and/or Must have or open a Premier or Advance Account

    Additional Information

    Reverts to Instant Access Savings, Flexible Saver or Premier Savings after 12 months.
  • HSBC Logo
    HSBC Regular Saver Depositor Protection logo
    Depositor Protection logo
    AER
    3.00%
    Account Type
    Offshore Fixed
    Notice / Term
    12 Month Bond
    Interest Paid
    On Maturity
    Opening Account
    Not Available Online Available At Branch Not Available By Mail Available By Telephone Not Available By Mobile
    Managing Account
    Available Online Available At Branch Not Available By Mail Available By Telephone Available By Mobile
    Rates
    Access
    Information
    Opening Restrictions
    Additional Information

    Rates

    Rate 3.00% paid at £25
    AER 3.00% paid at £25
    Interest Paid On Maturity
    Interest payment Interest can be paid away or compounded
    Min Opening Amount £25
    Max Investment £3,000
    Introductory bonus N/A

    Access

    Withdrawals Allowed
    Early Access Allowed
    Access Note
    Earlier access on closure only with Flexible Saver rate paid.
    Further Additions Allowed

    Information

    Min Age 18
    Max Age 0
    Taxation
    N/A

    Opening Restrictions

    Channel Island residents, Isle of Man residents and/or Must have or open a Bank Account, Bank Account Pay Monthly, Student Account, or Graduate Bank Account

    Additional Information

    Reverts to Instant Access Savings, Flexible Saver or Premier Savings after 12 months.
  • Isle of Man Bank Logo
    Isle of Man Bank Savings Builder Depositor Protection logo
    Depositor Protection logo
    AER
    1.51%
    Account Type
    Offshore Variable
    Notice / Term
    Instant
    Interest Paid
    Monthly
    Opening Account
    Available Online Available At Branch Not Available By Mail Available By Telephone Not Available By Mobile
    Managing Account
    Available Online Available At Branch Not Available By Mail Available By Telephone Available By Mobile
    Rates
    Access
    Information
    Opening Restrictions
    Additional Information

    Rates

    Rate 1.50% paid at £1, 0.45% paid at £10001 on portion of balance
    AER 1.51% paid at £1, 0.45% paid at £10001 on portion of balance
    Interest Paid Monthly
    Interest payment Interest can be paid away or compounded
    Min Opening Amount £0
    Max Investment £0
    Introductory bonus N/A

    Access

    Withdrawals Allowed
    Early Access Allowed
    Access Note
    Withdrawal during month which results in balance not increasing by £50 will result in no interest being paid for that month.
    Further Additions Allowed

    Information

    Min Age 16
    Max Age 0
    Taxation
    N/A

    Opening Restrictions

    Exclusively available to customers holding a current account and/or Isle of Man residents

    Additional Information

    Regular Savings account. No interest paid in month where balance does not grow by £50.
  • NatWest International Logo
    NatWest International Savings Builder Depositor Protection logo
    Depositor Protection logo
    AER
    1.51%
    Account Type
    Offshore Variable
    Notice / Term
    Instant
    Interest Paid
    Monthly
    Opening Account
    Available Online Available At Branch Not Available By Mail Available By Telephone Not Available By Mobile
    Managing Account
    Available Online Available At Branch Not Available By Mail Available By Telephone Available By Mobile
    Rates
    Access
    Information
    Opening Restrictions
    Additional Information

    Rates

    Rate 1.50% paid at £1, 0.45% paid at £10001 on portion of balance
    AER 1.51% paid at £1, 0.45% paid at £10001 on portion of balance
    Interest Paid Monthly
    Interest payment Interest can be paid away or compounded
    Min Opening Amount £0
    Max Investment £0
    Introductory bonus N/A

    Access

    Withdrawals Allowed
    Early Access Allowed
    Access Note
    Withdrawal during month which results in balance not increasing by £50 will result in no interest being paid for that month.
    Further Additions Allowed

    Information

    Min Age 16
    Max Age 0
    Taxation
    N/A

    Opening Restrictions

    Channel Island residents, Exclusively available to customers holding a current account, Gibraltar residents, Isle of Man residents and/or UK residents

    Additional Information

    Regular Savings account. No interest paid in month where balance does not grow by £50.
  • Lloyds Bank International Logo
    Lloyds Bank International International Regular Saver Depositor Protection logo
    Depositor Protection logo
    AER
    0.95%
    Account Type
    Offshore Fixed
    Notice / Term
    12 Month Bond
    Interest Paid
    Monthly
    Opening Account
    Not Available Online Not Available At Branch Available By Mail Available By Telephone Not Available By Mobile
    Managing Account
    Available Online Not Available At Branch Available By Mail Available By Telephone Not Available By Mobile
    Rates
    Access
    Information
    Opening Restrictions
    Additional Information

    Rates

    Rate 0.95% paid at £500
    AER 0.95% paid at £500
    Interest Paid Monthly
    Interest payment Interest must be compounded
    Min Opening Amount £500
    Max Investment £30,000
    Introductory bonus N/A

    Access

    Withdrawals Allowed
    Early Access Allowed
    Access Note
    No notice withdrawals. No interest paid for month where withdrawal is made.
    Further Additions Allowed

    Information

    Min Age 18
    Max Age 0
    Taxation
    N/A

    Opening Restrictions

    Locational. Customers must meet residency criteria which will be discussed at point of application. and/or Must invest £25K (or currency equivalent) or have a salary of at least £50K

    Additional Information

    N/A
  • HSBC Logo
    HSBC Online Bonus Saver Depositor Protection logo
    Depositor Protection logo
    AER
    0.55%
    Account Type
    Offshore Variable
    Notice / Term
    None
    Interest Paid
    Monthly
    Opening Account
    Available Online Not Available At Branch Not Available By Mail Not Available By Telephone Not Available By Mobile
    Managing Account
    Available Online Not Available At Branch Not Available By Mail Not Available By Telephone Available By Mobile
    Rates
    Access
    Information
    Opening Restrictions
    Additional Information

    Rates

    Rate 0.55% paid at £1, 0.35% paid at £500001 on portion of balance
    AER 0.55% paid at £1, 0.35% paid at £500001 on portion of balance
    Interest Paid Monthly
    Interest payment Interest must be compounded
    Min Opening Amount £1
    Max Investment £2,000,000
    Introductory bonus N/A

    Access

    Withdrawals Allowed
    Early Access Allowed
    Access Note
    Lower rate of 0.10% gross paid if withdrawal is made.
    Further Additions Allowed

    Information

    Min Age 16
    Max Age 0
    Taxation
    N/A

    Opening Restrictions

    Channel Island residents and/or Isle of Man residents

    Additional Information

    N/A
  • Leeds BS Logo
    Leeds BS Gibraltar Access Saver (Issue 2) Depositor Protection logo
    Depositor Protection logo
    AER
    0.50%
    Account Type
    Offshore Variable
    Notice / Term
    None
    Interest Paid
    Yearly
    Opening Account
    Not Available Online Available At Branch Available By Mail Not Available By Telephone Not Available By Mobile
    Managing Account
    Not Available Online Available At Branch Available By Mail Not Available By Telephone Not Available By Mobile
    Rates
    Access
    Information
    Opening Restrictions
    Additional Information

    Rates

    Rate 0.50% paid at £1
    AER 0.50% paid at £1
    Interest Paid Yearly
    Interest payment Interest can be paid away or compounded
    Min Opening Amount £1
    Max Investment £1,000,000
    Introductory bonus N/A

    Access

    Withdrawals Allowed
    Early Access Allowed
    Access Note
    No cash transactions.
    Further Additions Allowed

    Information

    Min Age 18
    Max Age 0
    Taxation
    N/A

    Opening Restrictions

    Expatriate and/or Gibraltar residents

    Additional Information

    N/A
  • Leeds BS Logo
    Leeds BS Offshore Access Saver (Issue 2) Depositor Protection logo
    Depositor Protection logo
    AER
    0.50%
    Account Type
    Offshore Variable
    Notice / Term
    None
    Interest Paid
    Yearly
    Opening Account
    Not Available Online Available At Branch Available By Mail Not Available By Telephone Not Available By Mobile
    Managing Account
    Not Available Online Available At Branch Available By Mail Not Available By Telephone Not Available By Mobile
    Rates
    Access
    Information
    Opening Restrictions
    Additional Information

    Rates

    Rate 0.50% paid at £1
    AER 0.50% paid at £1
    Interest Paid Yearly
    Interest payment Interest can be paid away or compounded
    Min Opening Amount £1
    Max Investment £1,000,000
    Introductory bonus N/A

    Access

    Withdrawals Allowed
    Early Access Allowed
    Access Note
    No cash transactions.
    Further Additions Allowed

    Information

    Min Age 18
    Max Age 0
    Taxation
    N/A

    Opening Restrictions

    Expatriate (Must be resident in Spain.)

    Additional Information

    N/A
  • Santander International Logo
    Santander International Island Call Account Depositor Protection logo
    Depositor Protection logo
    AER
    0.50%
    Account Type
    Offshore Variable
    Notice / Term
    None
    Interest Paid
    Quarterly
    Opening Account
    Not Available Online Available At Branch Available By Mail Available By Telephone Not Available By Mobile
    Managing Account
    Available Online Not Available At Branch Available By Mail Available By Telephone Not Available By Mobile
    Rates
    Access
    Information
    Opening Restrictions
    Additional Information

    Rates

    Rate 0.50% paid at £1
    AER 0.50% paid at £1
    Interest Paid Quarterly
    Interest payment Interest must be compounded
    Min Opening Amount £0
    Max Investment £0
    Introductory bonus N/A

    Access

    Withdrawals Allowed
    Early Access Allowed
    Access Note
    N/A
    Further Additions Allowed

    Information

    Min Age 18
    Max Age 0
    Taxation
    N/A

    Opening Restrictions

    Channel Island residents and/or Isle of Man residents

    Additional Information

    N/A
  • Isle of Man Bank Logo
    Isle of Man Bank Instant Saver Depositor Protection logo
    Depositor Protection logo
    AER
    0.45%
    Account Type
    Offshore Variable
    Notice / Term
    Instant
    Interest Paid
    Monthly
    Opening Account
    Available Online Available At Branch Available By Mail Not Available By Telephone Not Available By Mobile
    Managing Account
    Available Online Available At Branch Not Available By Mail Available By Telephone Available By Mobile
    Rates
    Access
    Information
    Opening Restrictions
    Additional Information

    Rates

    Rate 0.45% paid at £1
    AER 0.45% paid at £1
    Interest Paid Monthly
    Interest payment Interest must be compounded
    Min Opening Amount £1
    Max Investment £0
    Introductory bonus N/A

    Access

    Withdrawals Allowed
    Early Access Allowed
    Access Note
    N/A
    Further Additions Allowed

    Information

    Min Age 16
    Max Age 0
    Taxation
    N/A

    Opening Restrictions

    Isle of Man residents

    Additional Information

    N/A
Note

Eligible deposits with offshore banks are protected by a relevant compensation scheme. More information is available at: https://alpha.moneyfacts.co.uk/savings-and-isas/guides/depositor-protection-schemes-what-would-happen-if-a-bank-goes-bust/

Disclaimer

All rates subject to change without notice. Please check all rates and terms before investing or borrowing.

Quick Links

Quick links are where we have an arrangement with a provider so you can move directly from our site to theirs to view more information and apply for a product. We also use quick links where we have an arrangement with a preferred broker to move you directly to their site. Depending on the arrangement we may receive a modest commission either when you press a 'Go to Provider' or 'Speak to an Adviser' button, when you call an advertised number or when you complete an application.

Still not sure?

Read all savings and ISA guides
guide icon
What does compound interest mean?

What does compound interest mean?

Read More
guide icon
How to be savings savvy as an expat

How to be savings savvy as an expat.

Read More
guide icon
High Interest Current Accounts

Our guide explaining how high interest current accounts work.

Read More
guide icon
What are ethical savings accounts?

This guide gives an overview of ethical savings and the providers in the ethical savings market.

What are ethical savings accounts?

Read More

Ask us anything

Ask us anything

How Moneyfacts works

  • blue money scales

    BALANCED. Moneyfacts.co.uk is entirely independent and authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority.

  • free label

    FREE. There is no cost to you. Our service is entirely free and you don't need to share any personal data to access our comparison tables.

  • drawing of pound sign and arrow

    TRANSPARENT. We only receive payment from product providers and intermediaries for quick/direct links and adverts through to their websites.

  • blue binoculars

    COMPREHENSIVE. We research the whole market and scour the small print so you can find the best products for your needs.

Get our weekly newsletter

Weekend Moneyfacts is available free by email to all Moneyfacts.co.uk users.

Please send me Weekend Moneyfacts, Savers Friend and selected third-party offers.

A Guide to offshore savings

Leanne Macardle

Leanne Macardle

Editor
Published: 30/01/2019

At a glance

  • An offshore savings account is held outside of the UK, allowing you to save as an expat and/or in different currencies as a UK resident
  • Anyone with the right deposit and residency or citizenship requirement can open such an account
  • Tax will still need to be paid on these accounts and there will be different depositor protection schemes to take into account, so do your research before committing to offshore savings.

Offshore savings accounts explained

The main selling point of offshore savings accounts is that you don’t need to be a UK resident to have one, as well as being able to choose which currency you’d like to save in. However, the rates tend to be lower than on ‘normal’ savings accounts, so for anyone resident in the UK who isn’t planning to leave anytime soon and doesn’t have frequent business dealings overseas, there’s not much incentive to open one of these accounts.

That said, if you’d like to have some cash savings in Euros or US dollars, there are several offshore accounts that can offer this. As with UK-based savings accounts, you have a choice between easy access, giving some notice or putting the funds aside in a fixed rate bond.

Who can open an offshore savings account?

You don’t need a lot of money to open an offshore savings account. You do, however, need to adhere to either a British citizenship requirement (for expat accounts) or specific resident requirement, with some accounts open to Isle of Man, Channel Island and Gibraltar residents, or even UK residents.

While most of these accounts will ask for a minimum deposit of £5,000 or £10,000, there are some that can be opened with just a single pound. Again, whether such an account would be worth opening over an ‘onshore’ savings account would depend on your residency status and needs. Always compare offshore savings accounts with onshore equivalents as well as each other to help ensure you’re making the best possible choice.

How to open an offshore account

As with any savings account, different providers will offer different means of opening and operating their accounts. Some of the offshore providers are subsidiaries of the bigger UK banks and building societies, and these will likely have more account management options. You won’t need to book a trip abroad to open such an account, with many accounts being able to be opened by post, telephone or online.

While the opening requirements will differ between providers, they will all ask for proof of identity and proof of address, and will require you to be at least 18 years old. Some will have additional requirements, such as asking you to prove that you can afford to keep the account funded, although these kinds of requirements are more common with offshore bank accounts for everyday use (which tend to come with large fees).

Do you pay tax on offshore savings?

Unlike what you might think based on the news, the money in offshore savings accounts is not tax-free. For UK tax purposes, the same personal savings allowance is applied to any savings held in an offshore account, which means that basic rate taxpayers can earn the first £1,000 in savings interest per year without having to worry about taxation.

Anything above this will need to be declared through a self-assessment form with HMRC as income. While this means you would then have to pay some tax, there could be a welcome delay – depending on when you open an account and when the tax year ends – that allows you to add some more savings interest before taxation gets applied.

Remember that you may have to pay tax in the country you are residing in as well, so make sure you have everything sorted out fair and square – you don’t want to get into trouble with any government or pay double tax when you don’t need to. Given the numbers likely involved in all of this, you may even want to get professional advice so you can be sure you’re always declaring and paying the right amount for taxation.

Are offshore savings protected?

Offshore providers are not covered by the UK’s Financial Services Compensation Scheme, which protects £85,000 of your savings per banking institution no matter what happens. However, there will be comparable compensation schemes, such as the Isle of Man’s Depositors’ Compensation Scheme, which protects up to £50,000 per individual depositor.

Any money held in an offshore account will not be subject to the UK Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). Check with the provider as to whether you will be protected by an alternative deposit protection scheme, depending on where the bank is located. 

Pros and cons of offshore savings

  • Beneficial to expats who can’t find a better savings deal in their new country of residence
  • You can pay various currencies into these accounts and have the account in the currency of your choice (pound, Euro or US dollar)
  • You may be able to get a better return if you save in the strongest currency as well as the best available account, depending on currency fluctuations and conversions
  • The best offshore savings account providers will have a dedicated team of experts who should be able to help you with your international investment queries.
  • Offshore savings account interest rates are generally lower than onshore rates – always check the up-to-date chart to see how rates are doing whenever you are looking for one
  • Most offshore savings accounts will have high deposit requirements
  • They take a bit more hands-on work to make sure you are declaring all your savings income for tax purposes
  • Less of your money may be protected compared to onshore savings accounts.

To see what depositor protection scheme your savings provider falls under, head over to our guide on these schemes, which looks not just at what is covered by different countries, but also lists banks currently operating in the UK or its crown dependencies.

two people in a business meeting

At a glance

  • An offshore savings account is held outside of the UK, allowing you to save as an expat and/or in different currencies as a UK resident
  • Anyone with the right deposit and residency or citizenship requirement can open such an account
  • Tax will still need to be paid on these accounts and there will be different depositor protection schemes to take into account, so do your research before committing to offshore savings.

Cookies

Moneyfacts.co.uk will, like most other websites, place cookies onto your device. This includes tracking cookies.

I accept. Read our Cookie Policy