20 March 2020

HSBC announces additional relief for customers affected by COVID-19

Following the package of support HSBC UK developed to help customers as they tackle the financial impact of COVID-19, the bank is providing additional relief to customers who may need to use their overdraft.

From Thursday 26th March 2020, HSBC UK is introducing a temporary £300 interest free buffer on overdrafts, the equivalent of the weekly National Living Wage, for customers with Bank Account and Advance Accounts for a period of three months. This will see an increase on the £25 buffer which was introduced as part of the bank’s new simplified overdraft structure, which recently came into effect.

Tracie Pearce, HSBC UK’s Director of Retail Banking said: “The recent changes to our overdraft structure meant that seven in ten customers who went into the red would see no change in cost or it would cost less, with those using an unarranged overdraft, who are potentially the most vulnerable, benefitting most from these changes.

"With this temporary buffer for the first £300, up to nine in ten customers who use an overdraft will see no additional cost, based on our previous structure.

"We are here for our customers in these truly extraordinary times. While we put in place a package of support for customers across a number of product areas, we recently added the option of a mortgage payment holiday, which we had not previously offered, and now we are providing additional relief on overdrafts for millions of our current account customers. This will provide some welcome short term cashflow support at this crucial time."

The following package of support is in place for personal customers in financial difficulty, which could include:

  • Short term support through reduced or deferred payments for mortgages, with longer term support through extending the remaining term of their mortgage, switching rates or switching part or all to interest-only mortgage arrangements. This now includes a mortgage payment holiday.
  • Giving customers early access to fixed rate savings accounts without closure charges.
  • Support for customers with unsecured debt through reduced payments or breathing space to defer payments due; these solutions are tailored to individual customer need.
  • The option of a temporary increase in credit card and overdraft limits.

At this time, coronavirus is having an ever-growing impact on our colleagues and it is becoming increasingly difficult to maintain service levels through our contact centres and branches. While this impacts all customers, it is having a disproportionate impact on the vulnerable in our society.

To allow us to meet the needs of the most vulnerable, we ask that wherever possible customers consider managing their interaction with HSBC through our online or mobile channels. If they have questions relating to the support we’re providing, or indeed find themselves in difficulty, we advise to please first visit our dedicated coronavirus hub, which is regularly updated with frequently asked questions and supporting information.

Please be assured, if customers are unable to use our online or mobile services, we are there for them. It may just take a little longer than usual to get through to us.

Customers who wish to discuss their financial situation can visit the Help section our website (https://www.hsbc.co.uk/help/) or call us on 03457 404 404.

For the latest news and updates, visit the HSBC UK newsroom.

Media enquiries:

Steve Gracey – steve.gracey@hsbc.com / 020 7991 4118

Email: UKPressOffice@hsbc.co.uk


HSBC UK serves around 14.5 million customers across the UK, supported by 32,000 colleagues. HSBC UK offers a complete range of retail banking and wealth management to personal and private banking customers, as well as commercial banking for small to medium businesses and large corporates.

HSBC Holdings plc

HSBC Holdings plc, the parent company of the HSBC Group, is headquartered in London. HSBC serves customers worldwide from offices in 64 countries and territories in our geographical regions: Europe, Asia, North America, Latin America, and Middle East and North Africa. With assets of US$2,715bn at 31 December 2019, HSBC is one of the world’s largest banking and financial services organisations.

HSBC announces additional relief for customers affected by COVID-19 (3-page PDF 423KB)