Is your local bank open on a Saturday? - Which? News (2024)

Banks don't come under the same level scrutiny for reducing opening hours as they do for closing branches.

A branch shutting its doors can leave a hole in the high street, but closing half an hour early is unlikely to grab your attention.

But for those who work full time, branches that open at the weekend are a crucial link with their money.

Here, Which? reveals how many banks are open on a Saturday, what services you can access and alternatives for when the ‘closed’ sign is up.

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What's happening to weekend hours?

Metro Bank has become the latest provider to announce a cut to weekend hours in recent years, after Barclays, HSBC and Santander.

Known for its ‘open seven days a week’ policy, Metro Bank has scrapped Sunday opening altogether and halved the number of branches open on a Saturday.

It said there had been a ‘notable change’ in how customers use its services with the rise of online banking, and points out it’s not closing branches, and in fact plans to open 11 new branches in the north of England by 2025.

Sunday hours are now close to extinct for most of the big brands. We found just a handful of Bank of Scotland, Halifax and Lloyds branches offering them in central London, Sheffield, Manchester and Edinburgh.

  • Find out more:best bank and bank accounts 2024

How many banks are open on a Saturday?

We analysed public data supplied by some of the largest UK banks via application programming interfaces (APIs), to investigate what proportion of branches were open on a Saturday and the average hours.

We asked each bank to confirm our figure and provide more information about what services were available at the weekend.

We’ve ordered the table below by the providers with the highest proportion of branches open on a Saturday.

ProviderProportion of branches open on a SaturdayMost common hours
Santander87%9.30am - 12.30pm
Barclays86%9.30am - 1pm
TSB65%9am - 1pm
Nationwide64%9am - 12pm
Halifax60%9am - 1pm
Lloyds Bank53%9am - 1pm
HSBC45%9.30am - 1pm

*We did not hear back from the NatWest Group to confirm our analysis of the data.

Virgin Money data was unavailable

Santander came top of the table, with 87%. It told us all of its branches were open from 9.30am to 12.30pm, and it offers pre-booked face-to-face appointments between 12.30pm and 4pm for customers who need extra support.

Barclays has 86% of its branches open on a Saturday, most between 9.30am to 1pm, but it doesn’t offer a counter service on this day. You won’t be able to make large cash and coin transactions or collect currency, although staff are on hand to help.

It was a similar case for HSBC, the NatWest Group (which also includes Royal Bank of Scotland and Ulster Bank in Northern Ireland) and TSB, which warns on its website that front counters are often closed at the weekend. Again, staff can help customers to use the machines if necessary.

Bank of Scotland, Halifax and Lloyds offer a similar service to that available Monday to Friday, as does Nationwide.

  • Find out more:is your local bank closing?
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Alternatives to in-branch banking

Many providers have a host of alternative options if your local branch is shut and you want to avoid mobile or online banking.

Post Office services

Since January 2020, customers of certain banks have been able to use Post Office branches to withdraw and deposit cash in their accounts and make balance queries. Most banks will also allow you to deposit cheques.

This service, described as a 'lifeline' by the Post Office, means people can still access essential services, even if their local bank branch has shut.

  • Find out more:Post Office to continue to offer banking services for 30 providers

Shared banking hubs

Banking hubs involve banking providers working together to offer basic cash services in communities where bank branches and cash machines have closed, offering spaces for people to speak to their own bank.

They are owned by Cash Access UK and operated by the Post Office.

The hubs offer a counter service where customers of almost any bank can withdraw and deposit cash, make bill payments and carry out other regular banking transactions.

There will also be private spaces where customers can speak to someone from their own bank for advice and support about more complex issues.

Banks provide staff on rotation, so there should be trained specialists from different banks available on different days.

  • Find out more:are banking hubs enough to protect access to cash?

Pop-up services

Many banks have set up pop-up initiatives in the past few years.

For example, Barclays Local has more than 360 locations across the UK in places where there's a community presence, such as town halls and libraries. Customers can access in-person support including help with digital banking, financial reviews and bill payments.

TSB has 44 pop-ups based in smaller towns and communities. These provide face-to-face support, including making payments, providing product information and help with money queries.

Lloyds has 42 locations served by community bankers, which have a dedicated office space in a local venue where customers can chat in private. Another 59 are coming soon.

Cashback without purchase

This initiative allows people to request cashback at the till in their local convenience store, without needing to make a purchase or pay a fee.

You can find out where this service is available by using Link's cash locator on its website or mobile app. Just type in your location and search for the orange symbols which state 'CT'.

How many banks have closed?

Which? has been tracking branch closures since January 2015, and in that time 5,944 sites have closed, at a rate of around 54 each month. This represents more than half the branches that were open at the start of 2015.

So far there have been 340 closures scheduled for 2024: 90 from Barclays, 76 from Lloyds, 68 from NatWest, 64 from Halifax, 26 from Bank of Scotland, 10 Ulster Bank branches, four Danske branches and two RBS branches.

Already there are 16 closures pencilled in for 2025: six from Barclays, five from Lloyds and five from Halifax.

Nationwide is currently the provider with the most branches remaining open across the country, with 605 outlets still operating. The building society has also pledged to not leave any town or city in which it is based until at least 2028.

Is your local bank open on a Saturday? - Which? News (2024)
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