IDFC First Bank started operations in India in 2015 and is already present at 17,216 points across the country, with 15 branches in low-settlement areas as well. The bank currently doesn’t have any presence overseas, although it does allow free fund transfer from any overseas bank, as well as NRE or FCNR accounts of any Indian bank. If you are willing to look beyond its lack of proven track record in NRI banking, IDFC could be a good option.
IDFC First NRE Account Features
If your wish to maintain savings in India while working and living overseas, IDFC Bank’s NRE savings account could be a good choice, given its useful features. Here’s a look.
- Among the highest interest rates offered for NRE savings account by banks in India, of 6% for balance up to ₹1 lakh and of 7% for balance above ₹1 lakh.
- Interest is calculated on daily account balances and paid on a quarterly basis.
- Free Visa Signature debit card offered with the account. This card is accepted worldwide across all retail and online establishments. It also offers some useful features, such as insurance cover, complementary airport lounge access, fuel surcharge waivers and enhanced daily purchase or cash withdrawal limits.
- 24/7 customer services
- Online and phone banking facility
- Optional cheque book offered at no extra charge
- Free transfer of funds from overseas banks or any other NRE /FCNR account in an Indian bank to the IDFC NRE account. Transfers are allowed in 5 different foreign currency denominations.
- No transaction fees on use of account.
- Balance is maintained in Indian rupees.
- Customers can appoint a mandate to manage their accounts on their behalf in India.
- State-of-the-art mobile app
- Customers can open accounts and upload all necessary KYC documents online.
- High interest rates for NRE fixed deposits for both short and long-term tenures, at an average of 7.5%.
- Customer services are supposed to be 24/7, but some customers have complained that there is no responses in the evening hours.
- Solving issues could take a lot of time, which again speaks of poor customer services.
- No option for mutual fund investments or loans against NRI savings accounts.
- Technical problems have been reported with phone banking.
- Very few branches in India and no presence in some Tier-I cities.
- No option to pay utility bills through online banking.
- Lack of account statement delivery via email
- No mention of separate debit card and cheque book for mandate holders
- High interest rates for both NRE savings and term deposit accounts
- Easy and economical remittance facility
- No fee on fund transfers or account usage
- Lack of branches in India and no presence overseas
- Lack of reliability
- Lack of robust technical infrastructure to support modern banking facilities
- Poor customer service
Have you used IDFCs NRE services? What are your thoughts and feedback?