This post has the Business English graphic but really, it’s for anybody who needs to use banks in English.
- open an account
- close an account
- make a withdrawal
- make a deposit
- be in credit
- be overdrawn/go overdrawn
- an overdraft
- take out a loan
- make a transfer
When you want to start using a bank you have to open an account, which is a section of a bank database that says how much money you have available.
When you want to stop using a bank you have to close an account. Easy!
To get your money out of the bank you make a withdrawal.
To put your money into the bank you make a deposit.
If you have money in the bank you are in credit.
If you have taken more money from the bank than you had available you are overdrawn. You can also say you have gone overdrawn.
The bank lets people go overdrawn without any penalty if they set up an overdraft facility.
When you want to borrow money from the bank and pay it back month by month, you take out a loan.
If you want to send money to a different bank account you have to make a transfer. If you want to send money to an account in a different country you need a SWIFT code, which is an international bank number.
Customer: Hello, I’d like to make a withdrawal. I couldn’t get my money out of the cash machine.
Banker: Could I take your bank card, please?
Customer: Here you are.
Banker: Do you have any photo ID?
Customer: Is my driving licence okay?
Banker: Yes, that’s fine. I’m afraid you’ve gone overdrawn by fifteen pounds and seventeen pence.
Customer: Really? That is strange because today is pay day and I should have around one thousand six hundred pounds going into my account. I also need to make a transfer. Could you tell me if my salary has been transferred to my account?
Banker: It appears that it hasn’t. I may be able to set up a temporary agreed overdraft for you while you deal with this problem. Would you like me to set up a five-hundred pound overdraft for you?
Customer: Yes, please. I’d like to transfer two hundred dollars to this account in Thailand, please.
Banker: Do you have the SWIFT code?
Customer: Sorry, I don’t.
Banker: I’m afraid I need the SWIFT code; it’s an international bank ID number.
Customer: Well, I’ll have to find it later from my son. I suppose I should phone work as well. Thank you for your help.
Banker: Thank you.