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Published 19 May 2023

RBS Business Account Review

RBS provide business bank accounts for start-ups and existing business of all kinds.

Many or all of the products and brands we review are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and the product we choose in our ‘promotion’. However it doesn’t influence our reviews. Our opinions are our own.

RBS is a traditional high-street bank offering three types of business bank account. All three accounts  follow a ‘pay as you go’ system rather than charging a fixed monthly fee. This may suit your business if you do not make payments frequently.

The Start-Up Account is also transaction fee-free for the first 24 months, meaning it could be a good entry point to business banking as a new organisation.

However, unless you are an existing RBS personal or business customer, you won’t be able to open an RBS  account in England, Wales or Northern Ireland, but instead be directed to NatWest (for customers in England and Wales) and Ulster Bank (for customers in Northern Ireland).


RBS Start Up Business Account

  • Monthly Fee
  • Card Purchase Fees
    From free
  • Bank Transfer Fees
    From 35p
  • Offer
    24 months' free banking
Learn More

This product may be one of a range offered by this provider. Always check terms & conditions for suitability before applying

Learn more about how we bring you our review.

Key Features

  • No monthly fees
    You are not charged a monthly fee to keep your RBS business account open.
  • FSCS protection
    Your eligible deposits, up to £85,000, are protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).
  • 24/7 customer service
    You can ring the RBS call centre at any time to make basic business banking enquiries.
  • Overdraft and credit facilities
    RBS offers business overdrafts, credit cards and loans.

Pros and cons of RBS Business Banking



The pros and cons featured here are chosen by us based on a combination of our expert, research-based opinions and an exclusive survey of UK business owners and decision makers. The survey was conducted on behalf of NerdWallet UK in December 2022 to identify the business bank account features that people feel are most important. They are unlikely to be the only product features and restrictions that you should consider. Pros and cons are subjective and you should align them to your own personal and business circumstances. Information was correct at the time of publication but may have changed since.

RBS business account full review

The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) was originally founded in Edinburgh in 1727, and now forms part of the NatWest Group PLC, which also includes NatWest and Ulster Bank. It offers an online and in-branch service to personal and business customers. 

Looking at business banking in particular, RBS offers three different types of business bank accounts to suit start ups, established businesses, and charities and other not-for-profit organisations.

Start-Up Account

Royal Bank of Scotland’s Start-Up Account is for businesses that have been trading for less than a year, and have turnover of less than £1 million. 

It comes with no monthly fee and no transaction fees for the first 24 months. Once that period has elapsed, you will be charged per transaction.

You can also apply for an arranged overdraft, use FreeAgent accounting software at no cost, and access Tyl to take payments online.

Business Account

The standard RBS Business Account is available for businesses who have a turnover over £1 million and have been trading for under or over a year, alongside businesses who have turnover of less than £1 million but have been trading for over a year.

It is a pay as you go account – this means that, while you will not pay a monthly fee to keep the account open, you will pay for each transaction you make.

It also comes with free accounting software FreeAgent, the option to hire Tyl, NatWest’s card machine, for online payments, a dedicated relationship manager (if eligible), and the ability to apply for an overdraft.

Community Account

If you are a charity or not-for-profit organisation, and someone on your application already has an RBS business or personal account, you can apply for a Community Account.

If your organisation’s annual credit turnover is less than £100,000, you can apply for free banking. If it is over £100,000, then you will pay per transaction at RBS’s standard tariff rates.

The Community Account also comes with free access to FreeAgent accounting software.

RBS business account features: at a glance

Start-up AccountBusiness accountCommunity Account
Monthly feeFreeFreeFree
Transaction feesNo, for the first 24 months. Yes, once the opening offer has elapsed.YesNo, if your turnover across accounts doesn’t go over £100,000. Yes, if turnover crosses £100,000.
Account managementOnline, via an app, in a branch and over the phoneOnline, via an app, in a branch and over the phoneOnline, via an app, in a branch and over the phone
FSCS protectionYesYesYes
Set-up timeSame daySame daySame day
Cash depositsYes (70p per £100 outside free period)Yes (70p per £100)Yes (70p per £100 if not eligible for free banking)
ChequesYes (70p per item outside free period)Yes (70p per item)Yes (70p per item if not eligible for free banking)
Access to other banking servicesYesYesYes
International paymentsYesYesYes
Customer services0345 600 2230 (24/7)
24/7 secure messaging (digital banking and mobile app)
RBS business WhatsApp
0345 600 2230 (24/7)
24/7 secure messaging (digital banking and mobile app)
RBS business WhatsApp
0345 600 2230 (24/7)
24/7 secure messaging (digital banking and mobile app)
RBS business WhatsApp
Multiple user accessYesYesYes
Create and send invoicesYesYesYes
Integration with accounting software toolsYes (FreeAgent)Yes (FreeAgent)Yes (FreeAgent)

Where RBS business account stands out

Account perks: RBS accounts come with a variety of benefits, including free access to FreeAgent accounting software, the option to take online payments via Tyl, and, if you have a Business Account, the possibility for a dedicated relationship manager.

No monthly fees: Regardless of whether you open an RBS Start-Up Account, Business Account or Community, you will not pay a monthly fee to keep it open.

FSCS protection: Eligible deposits, worth up to £85,000 across all your banking accounts, will be protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).

Quick set-up: RBS claims that 80% of business current account customers can access their account on the same day as their initial application.

24/7 customer support: You can ring an RBS call centre to make basic banking enquiries 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Access to overdraft and credit facilities: If eligible, you can apply for a business overdraft, credit card and loan through your RBS business account.

Sole traders, limited companies, LLPs and charities: Not only are RBS business accounts available to sole traders, limited companies, and limited liability partnerships, they are also available to a range of charities and not-for-profit organisations. This includes clubs, societies, places of worship, and non-personal trusts.

Where RBS business account falls short

Access in England, Wales and Northern Ireland: Unless you have an existing RBS personal or business account, if you are based in England or Wales, RBS will direct you to open a NatWest account instead. 

If you are based in Northern Ireland, meanwhile, you will be prompted to open an account with Ulster Bank.

Transactions: Unless you are within the 24-month free banking period with your Start-Up Account, or are a business with a Community Account and turnover of less than £100,000, you will pay for every transaction you make with RBS. This means it might not be suitable if you make a high volume of transactions.

Customer reviews: While RBS has strong reviews for its mobile app, it has a ‘Bad’ overall rating of 1.3 out of 5, based on over 700 reviews, on Trustpilot. These reviews are for RBS as a whole, not just its business services.

RBS business account customer reviews

RBS business customers have left reviews on a number of different platforms. These reviews vary greatly, from bad to very good.

It is important to note that the following reviews are from RBS customers overall, not just the bank’s business customers:

This information is correct as of 16 May 2023.

RBS business account eligibility 

To be eligible for an RBS business account, you will need to:

There are then specific requirements for each business account type:

How to apply for a RBS business account

To apply for a RBS business account, you will need to take the following steps:

  1. Select the RBS business account you want to apply for.
  2. Submit an application form online or in a branch. 
  3. Provide RBS with the documents and information it requires, including your trading name, personal and business addresses, cash-flow forecasts, and countries you are registered in for tax purposes.
  4. Wait to hear back from RBS.

Review methodology

At NerdWallet Ltd UK we base our reviews on the results of surveys we conduct to understand what key product features are important to those who use them, and align them to the product we review.

Product details reflect the information that was available at that time but may have changed since. We strive to give you a review on as many products as possible but it is likely there are others available that we have not reviewed. The review is our opinion, but it does not constitute advice, recommendation or suitability of your financial circumstances.

You can view our review methodology here.

About the Authors

Kristina Fox

Kristina was a writer at NerdWallet who focused on writing finance content for small businesses, as well as young people and students. A recent graduate trading French for finance, she…

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Connor Campbell

Connor is a writer and spokesperson for NerdWallet. Previously at Spreadex, his market commentary has been quoted in the likes of the BBC, The Guardian, Evening Standard, Reuters and The…

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