Starling Business vs Monzo Business

Stela Gineva
Freddie Larkins
Last updated
August 3, 2023

Small business owners need a reliable and secure banking partner to manage their finances effectively. Two popular options in the UK are Monzo and Starling Bank, both of which offer business accounts with a range of advanced features and benefits.

Monzo Business Banking is focused on “making money work for everyone”. As such, their business account helps small businesses stay on top of their finances with a whole range of features, like integrated accounting and invoicing.

Starling Business, on the other hand,  is on a mission to help businesses save time and money. They offer a range of features too, including integrations and their Engine product which is a Banking-as-a-Service (BaaS) offering.

Go to StarlingGo to Monzo

When comparing these two options, some of the key factors you should look into include the fees, safety, ease of use, and additional features offered by each provider. We'll be digging into these areas in more detail to provide the information needed to make an informed choice for your business banking needs.

Starling vs Monzo: at a glance

FeatureStarling Monzo 
Safety and securityDeposits FSCS protectedDeposits FSCS protected 
Customer supportPhone, email and in-app live chat Phone, email and in-app chat 
Savings account2.5% AER gross interest rate 1.5% AER variable 
Overdraft and credit optionsOverdraft and business loans available Business loans available through their partner Funding Xchange 
IntegrationsXero, FreeAgent, Quickbooks + a whole host of other integrations via their marketplace.Xero, FreeAgent, QuickBooks 

So, to sum up:

  • Both Starling and Monzo offer FSCS protection for your deposits.

  • Both providers offer a range of customer service options, including phone, email and in-app live chat.

  • Both providers offer a business savings account.

  • Starling offers overdraft and business loan options, Monzo doesn’t offer business loans but is partnered with Funding Xchange to help facilitate them.

  • Both providers offer a range of integrations for your accounting software.

About Starling

Established in 2014, Starling claims to be “Britain’s first digital bank” and offers an array of services to its customers, including top-notch business accounts for freelancers and entrepreneurs.

Since its inception, the company has evolved massively to offer a range of integrations via the marketplace, as well as its “best-in-class” SaaS solution Engine, which allows businesses to build banking solutions with Starling.

Learn more about Starling

About Monzo

Monzo is a UK-based bank that offers personal and business banking solutions. With over 7 million users across its personal and business bank accounts, Monzo has secured its position as a leading provider of innovative banking services that cater to small businesses and individuals alike.

The bank has been recognised by its customers as the 2022 Best Business Banking Provider, earning its reputation as a reliable and trustworthy financial partner. In a recent independent survey.-,The%20results,-represent%20the%20view), Monzo ranked 1st in the UK for overall service quality.

Learn more about Monzo

Safety and security

Both Monzo and Starling take steps to protect your deposits and make sure your funds are safe. Let’s take a look to see how.

Deposit protection

Monzo and Starling’s business accounts offer FSCS protection for your funds. This means your funds are covered up to £85,000 in total across all accounts you hold with a specific bank.

Fraud prevention

Both Monzo and Starling offer a range of fraud prevention features to ensure the security of your bank account. One of Starling's key features is its real-time notifications, which keep users informed about all incoming and outgoing transactions, giving them the ability to identify and report any potentially suspicious activity immediately. In addition, Starling's 3D secure feature provides an extra layer of security through two-factor authentication, requiring users to approve certain transactions via the app.

Similarly, Monzo's instant notifications keep users in the loop about every transaction, providing an immediate alert after payments are made. Plus, Monzo customers can protect their accounts with touch ID, face ID, fingerprint, or PIN, further reducing the risk of unauthorised access.

If a card is lost or stolen, both services allow users to freeze their cards immediately, preventing any further transactions. With Monzo, you can even “defrost” your account if you find your card later.

Also, Monzo and Starling provide 24/7 customer support to help users who may be worried about fraud.

Protecting user data

Starling's servers are mainly located in the UK and the EEA, which ensures compliance with GDPR regulations. Any information stored on their servers is immediately encrypted to add an extra layer of security. The company also takes steps to safeguard your data if it is transferred outside of the EEA.

Monzo also stores data outside of the UK and may transfer user data to organisations outside of the UK as well. However, Monzo protects user data by ensuring that it is stored in countries or with organisations that have been deemed to “provide an adequate level of protection” by the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO).And, if the bank isn’t satisfied this is the case, it may use specific contracts to guarantee that personal data receives the same level of protection it would within the UK.

To sum up, both companies take your data protection seriously and have transparent privacy policies that explain how your data is handled.


Both Monzo and Starling have won several banking awards, with each company showcasing a strong track record of excellence in banking services.

Starling was recognised by Smart Money People for three consecutive years, winning the Best Business Banking Provider award in 2019, 2020, and 2021, respectively.The bank also won the Best British Bank award for three years in a row, cementing its position as one of the top providers in the UK. And in 2021, Starling also won the Moneyfacts Best Banking App award. In the following year, Starling was named Bank of the Year by the CityAM Awards and was awarded the Which? Banking Brand of the Year award.

Monzo is not far behind with its list of accolades either. It won the Best British Bank award at the 2022 British Bank Awards, along with the Best Business Account and Best Banking App awards. And most recently, in 2023, Monzo won Smart Money People's Best Banking App award, cementing its position as a top-performing player in the banking industry.

Go to StarlingGo to Monzo

Fees and limits

FeeStarling BusinessMonzo 
Account opening feesNone None 
Monthly feesNone None (or £5 per month for Pro). 
Card paymentsNone None to use the card, but a Stripe charge (ranging from 1.5% to 3.25%) applies to accepting card payments. 
UK bank transfers via BACS, CHAPS and Faster PaymentsNone, except £20 for CHAPS payments None, faster payments free until 2024. 
International payments0.4% + delivery fee (£5.50 for SWIFT or £0.30 for slower transfers).   Outbound international paymentspowered by Wise. 
ATM feesNone Up to £200 every 30 days, 3% charge over £200 with a free account. 
Minimum balance feeNone None 
Maximum transaction£1,000,000 via Faster Payments, higher amounts possible via CHAPS  Up to £75,000 a month (sole trader) or £200,000 a month (LTD), higher limits possible if you contact Monzo. 

Both Starling Business and Monzo Business are free to join and both offer free plans. Monzo has a paid plan, also known as Monzo Pro, which is priced at £5 per month. Business Pro comes with features like integrated accounting, invoicing, and an optional 6-month free trial of Xero. Plus, their handy tax pots feature means you can choose a percentage to set aside for taxes which is automatically set aside every time you get paid.Starling doesn’t have a paid plan per se, but you can customise your business account with add-ons, including the “Business Toolkit” which costs £7 per month and comes with features like managing invoicing, VAT, and HMRC tax calculations. You can also opt for a paid Euro business account which costs £2 per month, or a US dollar business account which costs £5 per month.

Other than that, both providers have similar fee structures. Monzo has lower maximum transaction limits than Starling, but both providers offer the opportunity to make bigger payments if necessary.


Both Monzo and Starling are generally reliable and, when issues crop up, these are fixed quickly. On checking the status page for Starling’s systems, all systems were operational at the time of writing. Most systems were operational at Monzo too, with the exception of SMS Outbound Delivery which was experiencing “degraded performance” during our spot check.

But, it’s worth noting that no past incidents were reported over the last couple of weeks at Monzo or Starling. Overall, both companies offer transparent status pages with updates to keep customers informed about the site's reliability. And, issues appear to be fixed quickly.

Customer support

Starling BusinessMonzo 
Phone ✅ - available ✅  - available 
Email ✅  - available ✅  - available 
Live chat ✅ - in-app live chat available 24/7 ✅- in-app live chat available 24/7 

If customer support is of importance to you, you’ll be glad to know that both Starling and Monzo offer round-the-clock customer service to their business clients. Their in-app live chat is available 24/7, but both providers also offer phone and email support if that’s your preference.

International payments

When it comes to international payments, both Monzo and Starling offer options for their business accounts. Starling provides support for 20 currencies and enables users to send money to 36 countries through their service. The provider also charges a 0.4% transfer fee along with a SWIFT fee of £5.50. For budget-conscious business owners, there is the option to pay using the local network fee starting from £0.30 instead of the SWIFT fee.

It’s also worth noting that when it comes to international payments, Starling doesn't currently support some major players like India and the UAE, which could present challenges for businesses operating in those countries.

Monzo, on the other hand, has partnered with Wise to make it possible for users to make international payments. If you want to make international payments, you’ll need to use the Wise integration. Monzo will create a Wise account for you if you don’t already have one to allow you to make payments.As of right now though, you won’t be able to use your Monzo account to receive international payments, unless you’re receiving Euros. You’d have to receive the money in your Wise account, convert them to pounds, and then send the funds to Monzo. Support for other currencies is currently in the works.

Ease of use

Both Starling and Monzo offer a fairly intuitive experience on their apps and on the web. But, there are some important differences to consider between the two providers.

Firstly, both accounts have high ratings on both the App Store and Google Play Store, with Monzo and Starling both receiving a 4.9/5 rating on the App Store. However, on the Google Play Store, Starling has a slightly higher rating of 4.5/5 compared to Monzo’s 4.3/5 rating.

Both Monzo and Starling also offer both browser-based access to their accounts. In other words, you can choose to manage your banking on the web or in-app.

In terms of accessibility, a Google Chrome audit gave Starling’s website a high accessibility score of 98/100 and their mobile version a perfect score of 100. Monzo, on the other hand, scored lower on both desktop and mobile versions, with an accessibility score of 79/100 for their desktop version and 77/100 for their mobile version.

The provider was flagged for not following some accessibility best practices, such as not accommodating zooming in for people with low visibility, and structuring information in a way that’s difficult for screen readers to understand.

Based on these metrics, while both Monzo and Starling have highly rated mobile apps, Starling may have the edge in providing a more accessible and intuitive user experience with their higher accessibility score.

Savings accounts and interest rates

Both Monzo and Starling offer interest-earning savings account options. The key difference between the two options lies in accessibility versus higher interest rates. Monzo's instant access savings account offers a variable AER interest rate of up to 1.5%, with no minimum deposit requirements and the flexibility to access and withdraw funds at any time. This makes it a great option for businesses looking to earn interest on spare funds with the flexibility to dip in the pot whenever they need to do so.

Starling's Fixed Business Saver, on the other hand,  offers a higher AER gross interest rate of 2.5%, with a minimum deposit of £2,000 and the requirement to lock funds away for a year. While this offers the potential for a higher return on investment, it also means that businesses will need to weigh the benefits of the higher interest rate against the lack of flexibility in accessing funds during the one-year term.

Ultimately, the choice between Monzo and Starling's savings account options will depend on  your individual requirements and priorities. If you want maximum flexibility, Monzo's instant access savings account may be the better option. On the other hand, businesses looking to earn a higher return on investment may want to opt for Starling's Fixed Business Saver.

Learn more about StarlingLearn more about Monzo

Overdraft facilities

When it comes to overdraft and loan options, there is a significant difference between Monzo and Starling. Starling offers both overdrafts and business loans for its business users. The bank’s arranged overdrafts range from £1,000 to £50,000, with interest only charged on the amount borrowed.

Monzo, on the other hand, does not offer overdrafts for its business users. Arranged overdrafts are only available to their personal bank account users. Business loans at Monzo are provided via its partner, Funding Xchange. Eligible limited companies can apply for loans ranging from multiple lenders, with loan amounts up to £100,000.

Starling has its own business loan products. They range from £25,001 to £250,000, and a personal guarantee is required as security, with a one-off loan arrangement fee of 4%.

If overdrafts are important to you, then Starling might be a better choice. But, if you’re primarily concerned with getting funding through business loans, then both Starling and Monzo can facilitate this.

Account opening process

Opening an account at Monzo and Starling is designed to be as straightforward and quick as possible. You should be able to complete the initial application in a matter of minutes. Both providers may require some additional documentation, however.

At Starling, you’ll need to apply for either a corporate account or a sole trader account. You might need to provide additional documentation, such as:

  • A valid form of ID for verification purposes

  • Bank statements

  • Lease agreements

  • Contracts

The bank will run a soft credit check before approving the account.

At Monzo, the application is fairly straightforward and there’s a detailed guide telling you exactly what to expect before you even hit apply. But, you’ll basically need to provide some basic information about your business, such as:

  • What type of business you’re running

  • What industry you’re in

  • What your business address is

  • How big your business is

  • How much money you expect to make each year

You’ll then need to verify your identity and pick the type of account you want, i.e. either the Lite version (which is free) or the Pro version (which comes with extra features but is paid).

Go to StarlingGo to Monzo

Cash deposits and withdrawals

Both Monzo and Starling offer cash deposits and withdrawals, but there are significant differences in how they handle cash-heavy businesses.

When it comes to cash deposits, Starling Business offers the option to deposit cash at the Post Office Counter Service for a fee of either £3 or 0.7% of the amount deposited, whichever is higher.

Monzo, on the other hand, allows cash deposits at PayPoint, but customers are charged £1 to pay in cash. There is also a limit of up to £1,000 every six months. Also,  the maximum amount of cash that can be deposited at Monzo in one go is £300. Monzo is looking into increasing these limits in the future, but their own website states that if you’re a cash-heavy business, they just might not be the right bank account for you.

With regards to cash withdrawals, Starling Business allows a limit of £300 per day in ATM withdrawals. However, if customers withdraw cash using the Post Office Counter Service, a fee of £0.50 per withdrawal is charged.  Monzo’s limits are lower. Customers can withdraw up to £200 every 30 days for free and are then charged 3%.

Both Monzo and Starling can process your cheques. Starling allows cheques of £1000 or less to be deposited via the app by simply taking a photo. Monzo, on the other hand, only allows customers to deposit cheques via post. The cheque deposit process at Monzo can take up to 4 weeks, depending on whether you use FREEPOST or regular post.

Monzo has lower limits and its cheque deposit process is a little more cumbersome than Starling’s. So, if you’re a cash-heavy business, Monzo might not be the best option for you.

Large payments

Both Starling and Monzo have limits on larger payments. At Monzo, there is a limit of £75,000 for sole traders and £200,000 per month for limited companies. If this is on the low end for your purposes, you can contact Monzo and discuss increasing the limit if needed.

Starling also has account limits, which are set individually. But, there are also ways to get around the limits. For instance, Starling's Faster Payments scheme allows for much larger transactions, with a limit of up to £1,000,000 per payment. For payments over this amount, Starling offers CHAPS payments for a fee of £20.

Larger payments could be queried. If this happens, you’ll be contacted through the in-app messaging system. You may need to provide additional evidence to support the transaction, which will be reviewed by Starling before processing the payment.


Both Starling and Monzo offer accounting integrations with popular software like Xero, FreeAgent and QuickBooks. If you want to send invoices or integrate accounting software with Monzo, you’ll need to opt for the paid plan though.

Starling also offers further integrations with SumUp and iZettle. Plus, the company has a dedicated marketplace where you can explore other business integrations in the insurance, payments, and HR space.


Monzo and Starling both offer award-winning business accounts with great features like accounting integrations and invoicing options. So which account is better? That depends on what’s important to you.

For instance, a cash heavy business might choose to go with Starling rather than Monzo. Monzo has low limits on cash deposits and ATM withdrawals, and its cheque deposit process is more cumbersome than Starling’s.

On the other hand, if you’re looking for instant access business savings accounts that earn interest, you might prefer Monzo. Monzo’s savings pots are interest-earning and can be accessed as and when you need them.

Both accounts have a lot going for them. It’s ultimately up to you to decide which features you value more.

Go to StarlingGo to Monzo


Is Starling cheaper than Monzo?

Both Starling and Monzo offer free accounts. Monzo’s free ATM limits are lower than Starling’s, so if you’re a cash-heavy business, Starling’s account might work out cheaper.

Which bank account has better reviews?

Monzo and Starling alike have very similar scores across the major review sites. Starling has a slight edge on the Google Play store; it scored 4.5/5 whereas Monzo scored 4.3/ 5. All in all, both banking providers have high scores, however. Starling’s average is 4.7/5, while Monzo’s is 4.6/5.

How do Starling and Monzo protect deposits?

Both Starling and Monzo have robust procedures in place to protect your money. Both banks offer FSCS protection for your funds. Also, features like instant notifications, instant card freezing, and two-factor authentication come as standard with the providers.

Check out our other business account comparisons

If there are other business bank accounts on your radar, our detailed comparisons will help you decide which one is best for your business: