Hi there. As said it is personal choice - only you can make the decision. If it's a vote I would say Westpac as there have been some stories regarding Commonwealth on this and the mustard site in the past where people have also had major probs and had to change banks. Good luck
From what is being said, it looks like UK dwellers only have Westpac and Commonwealth as options for setting up an account remotely. My advice is to use whichever one appears to be getting the best feedback on this forum, then when you get here, to switch to a credit union (approximately similar to a UK Building Society) because the banks will do anything to sucker you in, but Australian banks charge nasty fees after a honeymoon period, whereas with a credit union, you can largely avoid fees by 1) using their ATMs and 2) carefully planning your ATM and EFTPOS usage.
I use Community CPS (Australia's 2008 top-ranked credit union), but others I know of are Australian Central and Savings and Loans.
HSBC bank have a very cheap (i.e. free) daily account if you use only their ATMs, but as a web search revealed only 2 of those in Adelaide, I wouldn't be tempted! Having said that, I think that maybe I've seen an HSBC ATM at Marion (can anyone confirm this?).
Also, I have a totally free account with Citibank - I pay bills and use ATMs all over Australia and in the UK, and they are all free. My account with them is actually an overdraft facility, but I'm sure they will have other accounts which might suit you. As they are an international bank, maybe you can even set it up from the UK.
For the record, I wouldn't touch any of the usual Australian banks with a barge pole - though my St. George/BankSA credit card has the lowest interest rate that I have found.
Just my opinion from experience, maybe others will disagree.
We have been here 7 weeks and opened account with westpac as recommended by hifx. So good so far, when you go into city to identify it does take a while but since then we just use our local one. Have been using one in Glenelg a lot , an Irish lady and Scottish lady really helpful. Telephone banking and internet easy to set up as well and we have got a debit card on our main account (choice) and can do unlimited transactions unlike other banks. Hope this helps
We received our bank account details yesterday. They are waiving account service fee for 6 months. No complaints so far.
Originally Posted by LOOBYLOO