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FNB’s global solutions show strong growth as international travel picks up

The bank’s global account balances have exceeded R7bn, while transactional spend has grown by 90%

The FNB global account allows customers to make payments in a local currency when travelling overseas.
The FNB global account allows customers to make payments in a local currency when travelling overseas.
Image: Supplied/FNB

As more countries remove travel restrictions and the global economy reopens, FNB’s balances and spending on its global account has increased — thanks to South Africans travelling internationally. 

Account balances have surpassed R7bn, year-on-year spend by retail customers has grown by 90%, while new accounts grew 63% year on year. Customers who have the FNB global account are also opting for contactless payments when travelling abroad, with contactless volumes growing nearly 500% year on year.

Raj Makanjee, FNB Retail CEO, says the bank’s global account is part of a broader value proposition of global solutions that include the FNB Channel Islands offshore bank account, investment and fiduciary solutions. A global account can be opened in less than three minutes through the FNB and RMB private banking apps.

The account allows customers to save and transact in nine foreign currencies, make payments in a local currency when travelling, and receive international payments with ease. It also gives customers access to more than 1,000 international airport lounges with 10 complimentary visits a year, and customers can earn up to 4% back in eBucks on overseas card spend. It is useful for frequent travellers as well as families with children studying abroad.

The reopening of international borders has been a major contributor to the growth in global solutions, and especially the usage of the global account. Customers’ preference to use contactless payments when travelling abroad can be attributed to safety awareness and the demand for convenience. Given the current levels of volatility in the global economy, more customers will turn to global solutions to manage associated risks,” says Makanjee. 

Over the years, FNB has consistently improved the value of its global account to offer a wider choice of currencies. It has also improved eBucks rewards benefits and offers complimentary international lounge visits for travellers. 

Industry-leading advantages of FNB’s global account are:

1. The ability to save and transact in nine foreign currencies

Available currencies include the US dollar, British pound, euro, Australian dollar, Indian rupee or Chinese renminbi. There are no monthly fees and interest is paid out monthly.

2. Premium travel insurance

The bank’s customers and family get premium travel insurance when booking flights with their FNB global card. Travel insurance benefits cover things such as loss of checked-in luggage, crucial documents such as a visa or passport, and other unforeseen risks when travelling abroad. 

3. Affordable access to cash

Cash withdrawal fees on international ATMs can be expensive, but a global account debit card is a more secure means of making purchases. It is advisable to withdraw cash using the global debit card at an international ATM if cash is a necessity.

“As global travel and trade recovers to pre-pandemic levels, a growing demand for global solutions is to be expected. In addition, consumers and businesses have learnt hard financial lessons from the pandemic, and many are aware of the need to make smarter financial decisions, such as mitigating the risks of market and currency volatility. FNB’s global solutions are key in the effort to help customers and families with integrated advice across their transactional, lending, investment and insurance activities,” says Makanjee.

This article was paid for by FNB.