N26 has conducted a worldwide study to understand what problems people encounter with a traditional bank account, and a large percentage are irritated by hidden bank fees.
Just under one third (31%) think that their bank is trying to make more money, another third (31%) think that their bank does not have their customers’ interests at heart and one quarter (26%) think that loyalty to their bank does not pay off, as the best offers are always suggested to new customers.
In Italy, the percentage of dissatisfied customers reaches 47%, mainly caused by excessive complexity (29%) and the desire to sell new products or services (29%).
Is this all true?
N26’s study asked people if they had ever been charged an unforeseen fee, and an incredible 69% reported that they had been charged fees of which they were unaware.
Among the most common are fees on current accounts (38%), ATMs (38%) and credit cards (36%).
In Italy, the percentage is slightly lower and reaches 59%, where unexpected bank fees come from ATM withdrawals (34%), credit cards (30%) and the closing of the bank account (23%). Over the course of 12 months, 52% of Italians claim to have been victims only once, 36% two or three times and 9% four or five times.
Some countries are hit harder than others when it comes to unforeseen fees: in Spain and Switzerland, 81% of people said they had to pay these fees, in Greece, Luxembourg and Austria 75%, in Belgium and France 73%, in Portugal 71%, in Germany 70% and in the USA 66%.
In response to these issues, N26 decided to create Big Banking Chat in order to understand consumer concerns and eliminate the complexity of the banking system.
Andrea Isola, General Manager of N26 Italy, explained:
“We already know that people are worried about their finances, especially in a complex period like the one we are experiencing, but it is also important to identify what are the real obstacles of banking and the bank-customer relationship. With Big Banking Chat we want to identify these frustrations that everyone has experienced at least once when using the services of the banking sector, so that we can give concrete answers to people, helping them to actually take control of their finances. N26 was founded on the belief that the banking system should be simpler and more transparent. Our ambition has always been to build a bank that people love to use, and for us, that means listening to customers to identify their real needs”.
In fact, 44% of Italians have indicated that they want to eliminate these hidden bank fees and 38% have also indicated that they want a reduction in interest and additional expenses in difficult times like the one we are experiencing with the Coronavirus.