Monzo Business Bank Account Review

An in-depth review of Monzo Business Banking.

Updated: June 13, 2024
Matt Crabtree

Written By

Matt Crabtree

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Now one of the best business accounts in the UK, it features a robust mobile app, invoices, multiple user permissions, and round-the-clock assistance for users.

Does it provide everything you'd expect from a business checking account in the United Kingdom?

Check out our ‘at a glance' summary for a quick overview, or keep reading for more in-depth information on Monzo Business.

At a Glance — Pros and Cons

Pros

✔️  FSCS-guaranteed

✔️ Fast registration: ‘switching' allows you to switch your account over to us at no cost.

✔️ Free foreign transactions.

✔️ Service is available around the clock.

✔️ Practical budgeting.

Cons

❌ At this time, you are unable to accept payments from foreign banks.

❌ The free plan doesn't have any useful accounting connections.

❌ Paypoint cash deposits are £1.

❌ No ATMs or banks.

Monzo Business Banking Review — Overview

What is Monzo business banking?

Tom Blomfield, Jonas Huckestein, Jason Bates, Paul Rippon, and Jonas Folkesson established Monzo, a digital bank, in 2015. Due to a copyright dispute in 2016, the company, formerly known as “Mondo”, changed its name.

Monzo has offices in London, Cardiff, Glasgow, and New York City in addition to its main office there. Since its inception, Monzo has attracted over 5 million consumers throughout the United Kingdom and Europe and raised over £325 million from investors. Monzo's goal is to create a bank that is both fair and honest, and that puts its clients' needs first.

As a British bank, it is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA), although it has experienced laundering investigations in the past. 

Introducing Monzo business accounts

Monzo is a completely compliant financial institution that takes a cutting-edge approach to banking for businesses. Small companies that desire a streamlined, secure, and dependable banking experience may make use of their fully mobile business account. Monzo is a multi-award-winning bank that has helped over 90,000 UK entrepreneurs.

Who is Monzo business bank for?

Monzo has two business checking account options: the free ‘Lite' account and the £5 monthly ‘Pro' account.

Most features are only available in the paid Monzo Business Pro plan, making the free plan suitable for a one-person operation or a startup.

You must be a UK-based, registered, and tax-paying limited liability business (Ltd) or single proprietor to establish a Monzo Business account. You cannot open a Monzo account if you are subject to taxation in another nation.

There must be no corporate directors or corporate individuals of substantial control, and the limited liability company must be in good standing with Companies House and have an active status, director, and major shareholder. You should focus on generating revenue via the sale of products or provision of services rather than interest or dividends.

The following types of businesses are not accepted by Monzo: partnerships (including limited liability partnerships), limited companies by guarantee, public limited companies, charities, community interest companies, trusts or funds, clubs, and other non-registered organisations.

Monzo does not work with businesses in a number of high-risk sectors, including those dealing in illicit goods and services, selling expensive jewels, and providing financial services.

How to open an account 📁

Monzo's business account setup process can be done in eight easy steps:

☑️ The Monzo app is available for download in both the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store.

☑️ Get your application rolling: To get started, choose “Business account” from the app's list of account types.

☑️ Give them the details of your company: Enter your company's details such as name, registration number, and address.

☑️ Check your credentials: To enter, you must provide a valid form of government-issued photo identification.

☑️ Fill out your company information: Include the location, contact information, and nature of your enterprise.

☑️ To find out whether your application has been accepted or if further information is needed, you must wait for Monzo to examine it.

☑️ Once your account has been authorised, you may begin setting it up by attaching your company debit card, naming your pots, and scheduling recurring payments.

☑️ Sign in and get started: Once your Monzo business account is set up, you may begin using it for all of your company's financial needs.

Monzo Business Banking Review — What features do you get?

What features does Monzo business banking offer you as a company? We explore their key features in this section… 

1. Integrating accounting apps

There is no third-party app integration available on the free Business plan. If, however, you subscribe to Business Pro, you may integrate your account activity with third-party accounting software like Xero, QuickBooks, or FreeAgent. Customers who upgrade to Monzo Pro and are also new Xero customers will get a free six-month trial.

In addition to these accounting add-ons, users who sign up for Square via the Monzo app will have access to exclusive discounts. Expensify, an expenditure management system, also provides a discount for Monzo customers, but only after registering on their website. Connecting Flux with the app will also submit digital receipts for qualified purchases automatically.

2. Monzo mobile app

Since Monzo is an online-only bank, its app must provide the kind of polished experience one would expect from a legitimate financial institution. After using it, we found it to be reliable and simple to use.

The software is available for download in both the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store. Monzo users also have the option of accessing their accounts using a web browser, however, this isn't recommended unless you've misplaced your phone or there's an emergency.

In the app, you have the option of using either a personal or business account. Features like an overdraft and joint account are only available on the Personal account, for example. Every Business customer has access to:

  • Monzo's payment options include domestic and international wire transfers, Direct Debits and standing orders, and peer-to-peer transfers with pals.
  • Set up several “pots” for your savings and transfer money from your checking account into them as needed to reach your savings goals (e.g., a new computer, bills, a trip). The funds will be temporarily separated from the rest of your account balance until you transfer them back.
  • Spending limitations on bills, entertainment, and taxes, among others, may be added to a budget for specified time periods. Use the app to keep tabs on your progress.
  • Cards may be frozen and unfrozen, fresh cards ordered, PINs seen, gambling transactions blocked, magstripe capabilities deactivated and activated, and cards added to a mobile wallet.
  • Find answers to your queries regarding Monzo by seeing your account's limitations and allowances, fees, bank statements (which may be exported to an external file), and information.

The designated savings accounts are our favourite component of this money management system. Each pot may have its own target amount and expiration date (but it can be unlocked if the money is needed sooner).

When making purchases using a debit card or checking account, the designated funds will not be deducted from the pots, so they will remain segregated until you revert them to the main account. Instead of transferring money around manually, you may set up recurring incoming and outgoing transfers to and from the pots and your primary account.

In addition, the budgeting feature is helpful for identifying where extra money may have been spent. If you've gone too far in any given direction, the graph will show it. The budget will cycle again on the date you choose each month (unless you change it before then).

Limited liability corporations may have several account managers on the Pro plan of Monzo Business. However, be aware that there are no settings to restrict access, thus everyone may use every function.

You can avoid doing the maths yourself by setting up an automated Tax Pot, which will deduct a certain proportion of your income.

The Pro package adds the ability to issue and manage electronic invoices. That's about it as far as extras go for the Pro package.

3. Payment methods include: cards, cash, and checks

Debit Mastercards (Monzo does not issue credit cards) with chips, contactless, and swipe capabilities come included with every Monzo Business account. That will work with your Apple Pay or Google Pay account. Unlike the debit cards offered by most online banks, this one really has the cardholder's name, account number, and expiration date imprinted on the card.

The corporate debit card is available in two different tones of grey: a lighter hue for Lite users and a darker one for Pro customers.

You can use the card everywhere Mastercard is accepted, but there may “occasionally be issues” in Portugal, Bulgaria, and Cuba, according to the website. In addition, Monzo warns that scenarios in which the card is not acknowledged might arise if merchants do not maintain their systems up to date.

Withdrawing money from an ATM that accepts Mastercard is free, however, there are daily and monthly withdrawal restrictions, just as at a regular bank.

  • Daily: £400
  • 30 days: £5,500
  • More than 30 days but outside the EEA: £200

How about direct deposits of cash? You can make a deposit of £5-£300 at any PayPoint in the UK for only £1. Simply provide your Monzo card and the cash to the PayPoint employee, who will execute the transaction and issue a receipt. It may take up to 10 minutes for a cash deposit to show up in your bank account.

Max deposits are allowed. Monzo only deposits £1,000 every six months, which is not much for firms that deal heavily with cash like retail stores.

While it's free to deposit checks with Freepost, some stores prefer to use more expensive monitored postage for added peace of mind. Some vendors have expressed concern that their checks are taking too long to post to their Monzo account, thus opting for the paid method might provide some peace of mind. Keep in mind that Monzo specifies a clearing time of 2-4 weeks for deposited checks.

4. International monetary transfers

Current accounts with Monzo have a bank account number and sort code but no International Bank Account Number (IBAN), since the company mainly serves the United Kingdom. 

That's because Monzo has been “working on” integrating the system with the SEPA and SWIFT networks for a while now, but it hasn't happened yet. However, we did see that a BIC number was included with the corporate checking account. You can only keep British pounds in your account.

Monzo does, however, provide a few alternatives for accepting foreign currency:

  • 📖 Create an IBAN to provide to the sender with the help of an IBAN generator. Money may not be deposited into your Monzo account for many days if at all using this route.
  • 📖 Use TransferWise to send and receive money internationally. You can connect with TransferWise directly from the Monzo app.

You won’t be responsible for any fees associated with Option 1 if you receive an overseas payment; the sender would be responsible for those costs or they would be deducted by the receiving bank. Even though Monzo claims you can create IBANs, you shouldn't. Doing so will not ensure a successful money transfer.

International money transfers may be made and received with the help of TransferWise. TransferWise is our preferred option due to its reliability and minimal costs for making international currency transfers and payments. Because TransferWise is built right into the Monzo app's banking area, it's also the most hassle-free option.

Change to almost any currency.

Select the “international payments” radio button and enter the transfer information, including the currency or country of the receiver. During this procedure, you will see both the transfer charge (for example, when we tried it on May 26, 2020, it was just £0.63 to send £100 to euros) and the final amount the receiver would get once the exchange rate and taxes are applied.

Only by having the money sent to your TransferWise account, where it can be converted to GBP and sent to your Monzo account through a local bank transfer can you be sure of receiving payments from overseas.

Use the Business Debit Mastercard in any country and with any currency. Monzo guarantees you the best possible exchange rate by using the Mastercard wholesale rate with no markup.

Monzo Business Banking Review — Buying Guide

With that, let's go on to the next section of our Monzo review, where we'll talk about cost. Let’s explore choosing a Monzo business bank account.  

Monzo business banking fees

Monzo has no minimum contract length and no fees associated with opening an account.

You can choose between the free Lite account or the paid Pro account, which costs £5 per month. Neither option is permanent since you may change to the other at any moment. In the event of a downgrade from Pro to the free tier, however, all previously paid membership payments will be forfeited.

Monzo doesn't handle things like foreign transfers, interest rates, overdrafts, or loans for business customers, so other than the monthly Pro charge, there aren't too many expenses to speak of.

Withdrawals from UK cash machines are also free of charge, as are UK bank transfers and international payments made using debit cards. If you use an ATM outside of the UK to withdraw less than £200 in a 30-day period, the withdrawal is free.

Each £1 in cash you deposit at a PayPoint will cost you £1. If you send a cheque using Freepost, they'll process it at no cost to you.

How safe is Monzo?

Customer deposits with Monzo are insured up to £85,000 since the company is backed by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

Monzo provides top-notch in-app security and complies with all mandatory UK banking rules. You may control payment approval, card freezing, and spending limitations. Accessing your account through the website or mobile app will also need a password, PIN, fingerprint, or face recognition.

What about customer service?

All Monzo business account holders have access to our round-the-clock customer support team through in-app messaging, email, and phone. Instead of waiting for a response through email, you should contact customer care by in-app chat or phone.

There's also a community forum where you may ask questions, however, Monzo appears to have ceased responding there. However, you may get a fair idea of what Monzo is missing by reading responses to frequently asked questions posted by users just like you.

Many people have reported that their accounts were frozen without warning, and then they had to wait long periods of time to get their money out. It's quite annoying that there is no search function in the desktop version of the website's help section/FAQ to facilitate rapid access to specific answers to questions.However, a search bar is included in the app, making it considerably quicker to use.

The vast majority of Monzo's customers had no complaints, according to Trustpilot ratings. Many of the evaluations, however, are suspiciously favourable, which may indicate that the firm is incentivizing false positives.

If you read the unfavourable reviews, you'll discover that many customers have griped about their accounts being blocked without reason and then having to wait long periods of time to get their money back.

Watchdog has validated this by saying that more Monzo accounts have been suspended than those at any other bank in the previous 12 months. Possible causes include rapid expansion and Monzo's failure to keep up with the necessary regulatory changes.

Similarly, many people complain about having subpar interactions with customer service in general. The recent lack of access to the government-funded Bounce Back Loan Scheme has dissatisfied business users on the community forum.

Online reviews

Monzo has received a whopping 4.4-star rating from its satisfied customers. They have over 25,000 ratings on Trustpilot, with 80% being 5 stars as of January 2023. Customer service, ease of use, and overall satisfaction are common themes across reviews.

Some of the nearly 11 per cent of reviewers who gave a negative rating cited problems with banned accounts, while others complained about sloppy customer support.

Based on more than 129,700 evaluations, the Monzo app in the App Store has a near-perfect 4.9-star average. While over 98,000 users have given their app 4.8 stars on Google Play.

What other features set Monzo's business banking apart from the rest?

Monzo's corporate accounts have access to a number of useful tools, including but not limited to:

☑️ Monzo has a transparent pricing system where there are no surprises or long-term obligations.

☑️ Its “Tax Pots” feature makes it simple to allocate funds for various costs and keep tabs on your financial situation.

☑️ Monzo business checking accounts can be linked to Xero and other accounting programmes for automated export of transactions and simplification of bookkeeping.

☑️ And Monzo's multi-user access makes it simple for numerous people to handle a company's money.

☑️ Use Monzo’s virtual cards for online transactions, lowering the potential for fraud and allowing customers more freedom of movement.

☑️ Monzo's mobile app and website both provide access to your company funds, so you can manage your finances from anywhere.

☑️ Monzo also makes domestic and international wire transfers simple.

☑️ To ensure the safety of your company funds, Monzo provides cutting-edge security options including two-factor authentication and biometric login.

☑️ The company has a customer service staff ready to answer inquiries and resolve problems around the clock.

☑️ Finally, Monzo's mobile app makes it simple to sign up for and switch to a business account on the go.

Monzo Business Banking Review: The Verdict

Monzo is among the best UK challenger banks, however, it's missing a few key features on the basic plan. An adjustable overdraft, a joint account, and the option to earn interest on a savings pot are just a few of the additional features available with a Personal Monzo account.

Although it has been operating for quite some time, this online bank still has the feel of a start-up, with key features being neglected in favour of individual accounts. 

The Business account is great for keeping track of expenses, income, and payments, but sole proprietors and enterprises with international clientele need to find other ways to receive and send international wires.

Businesses who are used to the complete service offering from traditional banks may be disappointed by Monzo's absence of overdrafts and government- or Monzo-backed loans for business accounts.

When compared to the e-money accounts often associated with app-based business accounts, the ease of opening a Lite account and the absence of monthly fees are appealing. The Pro plan offers a few more perks for businesses, such as invoicing, accounting integration, and team access, but that's about it.

Without access to loan alternatives and integration with SWIFT and SEPA, Monzo's business offering seems lacking. Despite its long history, this online bank still has the feel of a start-up, with certain features left undeveloped and personal accounts given more priority. This doesn't imply you shouldn't consider it; you just need to know what to expect.

More about Monzo

If you believe the reports, Monzo's business banking product has been a huge success among UK companies.

Businesses obviously prefer this service since it provides a quick, cutting-edge, and hassle-free alternative to conventional banking.

Monzo gives sole proprietors, start-ups, and small companies in the United Kingdom access to the same robust tools and features offered by most traditional high street banks, but with the added ease and convenience of online banking.

Monzo contact details

For current account holders:

  • Call from the UK: 0800 802 1281
  • Call from abroad: +44 20 3872 0620

Related Guides:

FAQs

Why choose Monzo?

What paperwork do I need to submit for a Monzo Business account?

What are the eligibility requirements?

What other options do I have?

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