A number of banks are offering to deliver cash to the homes of vulnerable customers who are unable to go outside because of lockdown.
Research by The Mail on Sunday shows that customers of both Barclays and Tesco Bank can get £500 sent to their homes via Royal Mail special delivery – at no cost.
NatWest also offers a cash-to-home service if it believes that a customer is deemed to be ‘vulnerable’ – for example, disabled, elderly or struck down with Covid-19. Lloyds Bank does not offer a home delivery service but it will allow a trusted person to pick up £100 on a customer’s behalf.
Stranded: A number of banks are offering to deliver cash to the homes of vulnerable customers
The trusted person must first come in for an interview along with ID such as a driving licence or passport. The bank will call the customer to confirm details.
Santander will not deliver cash to customers but it does offer a carer’s card. This permits up to £1,500 to be transferred from a person’s bank account to the card. The card can then be used by up to two trusted people for making payments or shopping.
While HSBC boasts it is ‘extremely proud of the work being done to help vulnerable customers’, it does not offer a cash delivery service.
The Post Office offers ‘payout now’ and ‘pre-authorised cheque encashment’. For payout now, a person asks their bank to send a barcode voucher for a specific amount of money via text, email or post.
Once the barcode voucher has been received, it can be given to a trusted person and then exchanged for cash in a post office branch.
With cheque encashment, someone must contact their bank and give them the name of the individual who will cash their cheque at a post office using a ‘fast track cheque encashment’ service. The cheque is made payable to ‘The Post Office’ and the name of the person collecting the cash must be printed on the back.
James Daley, of campaign group Fairer Finance, welcomes the cash delivery measures.
But he believes they provide no more than ‘sticking plasters’ to the real problem – which is the difficulty eight million people face in accessing cash to meet their day-to-day needs.