Banking in Ireland leaves its customers behind the rest of the world

Last year after making the decision to move to Galway Ireland we set out to find office space and a bank to enable our operations to function. As consultants and accountants, we have been exposed to or used some of the latest technology and best practices from a variety of industries across the Globe. The Canadian Banking system is dominated by a few large players, just like in Ireland. However, we were surprised to find that their was a huge technology gap between the two markets. We looked at 3 players (Bank of Ireland, AIB and Ulster Bank) and found that they were all using basic platforms that resembled functionality and technology from the 90’s. Why was tech proud Ireland so behind?

Here are some of the features we are used to working with and think should be employed by Irish Banks. Have a peak and tell us which one would be most useful to you or your business with a poll at the end.

1.Mobile Check deposit-Deposit a check via your mobile phone

2. Receive and send money using only your email, and no Banking details.

3. Add a Bill or Payee by simply scanning it into your banking app? This uses the same technology as check deposit above.

4. Current Credit Score and Credit Score simulator which reflects how your situation may change based on your plans.

So there you have it. Our top 4 tech choices we wish Irish banks employed. There are loads more features we’d like to see but these were the most useful to regular customers. Let us know which one you value the most? Hopefully someone somewhere important will see this and start the ball rolling.

Thank you for Reading


Make a Plan-Work the Plan

Its been a while since I’ve written any Blog entries and there’s a good reason for that..

If you’ve read any of my past entries, hopefully you realize I say what I mean and practice what I preach…

This past summer my family and I took the leap of putting our retirement plans into high gear. We bought a house in Galway Ireland. Yes, the place where the “Galway Girl” song is about. Our transition to Ireland was made easier simply because my wife was Born there and is a citizen. She also had the foresight of applying for Irish passports when the children were born. I being married to an Irish Citizen, made it seamless to obtain a work and live permit, locally referred to as a Stamp4 Visa, or as we know it a PR Card (Permanent Resident).

Once that was sorted we found a house close to town and I found a co-working space to support my clients back in Canada. Cost of living comparisons are below:

Food = Same to lower in Ireland especially for meats.
Personal taxes = Equal to those in Canada, Corporate taxes are famously lower here
which attracts a lot of multi-national business
Property taxes < Sooo much lower here. I’ve saved 4,000 a year

Healthcare > in Canada.. but it is subsidized in Ireland including hospital
stays and medicines. Doctor and non-hospital costs are pay as you go. Insurance is available at 1,000 euro/year
Community >Here in Galway, it can’t be beat.

At 50, I’ve been asked why so early? The reason we are working our plan is simple. If you have the financial and personal means to do something at any point in your life you should do it. Waiting for the right time means that time could never come. Too many of my clients are still working because of unforeseen variables or events, and can’t retire. Others didn’t even make it to retirement.

Having options is the most important thing about personal and financial freedom. Without actions there can be no options or opportunity. We never know what’s around the corner or what tomorrow will bring. Better to seize the day or the opportunity when you can rather than wait for “the right time”. The right time may never come.

Options are freedom.

Till next time