I opened an E-ISA with HSBC last year as I bank online with them already and thought it would be convenient for me to just transfer money between my accounts online. How wrong could I be.
It was really easy to set up. As I already bank with HSBC, I was able to apply wholly online. HSBC didn't accept a transfer into the account from another ISA but, as my savings balance is fairly low, this wasn't an issue for me.
My problems started when I wanted to use their internet banking facility to manage my funds. This was an E-ISA after-all. I was often unable to transfer funds between the accounts with error messages often displayed. Convenience was my main reason for setting up this account although the rate, at the time, was competitive.
Over time the rates slid, I often found it hard to find a direct notice telling me what interest rate I was being paid. The rate spiraled down and I closed my account. Closing the account was perhaps the easiest thing I ever tried to do with it. I simply placed a request online and my account was closed within 3 days.
I'm confused by my experiences with this product as I've since set up a standard online savings account with HSBC to keep rent money separate and have been able to transfer my money simply and easily throughout.
I have had an ISA with HSBC since 2000. They had the best interest rate but since then the rates have not been as good as other banks. Went to my local branch and handed in a form from IF bank to have the ISA transferred. After one week the money was not transferred. Phone HSBC and was told that money has not been transferred because they don't hold my signature on the computer - and they did not have the courtesy to phone/write to let me know. In the end a form was sent out for my signature. Form duly returned and local branch contacted me. Requested that the money should be transferred directly to IF. Told that should not be a problem but was also ask whether I was sure I wanted to transfer my account. Surprise, surprise. Phoned HSBC today to find out about the transfer. I am told a cheque is being sent as HSBC does NOT have the facility to transfer ISA savings to another bank!! I just can't believe it. They are supposed to be one of the biggest bank and they have no such facility. I think HSBC is being unreasonable? Someone with a smaller Bank transferred to IF directly with no problems. Contacting the bank is aweful (0845 7404404) which is the only number you can use to contact your local branch.