Santander's free four-year railcard supports students and apprentices’ journey into higher education

•    Santander 1|2|3 Student Current Account1 is available to students and apprentices (levels four to seven).
•    Free four-year Santander 16-25 Railcard saves students an average of £159 a year2 on standard rail travel fares. 
•    Fee and interest-free guaranteed overdraft of up to £1,500 in the first three years, £1,800 in year four, and £2,000 if continuing to year five.

As exam results season approaches, Santander UK is pleased to confirm that it has renewed its partnership with the Rail Delivery Group and will continue to provide a free four-year Santander 16-25 Railcard as part of its 1I2I3 Student Current Account. The card gives students and apprentices (levels four to seven) a third off most rail fares across Great Britain, saving students an average of £636 over the course of the four-year Railcard.

Santander has been the number one student current account provider by market share since 20133 - in the last year two in five new student current accounts were opened with the Bank. 

The account is quick and easy to open online and delivers banking on-the-go with online and mobile access. Students also receive a contactless debit card and access to Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay.
Hetal Parmar, Head of Banking and Savings, Santander said: “For almost a decade Santander has been the number one choice for students and apprentices in the UK.  Having renewed the Railcard partnership once again, we’re delighted to continue supporting young people as they take their first step towards financial independence with our exclusive, free 4-year railcard to help with travel costs, and other great benefits that the Santander Student account offers.” 

Jacqueline Starr, CEO of the Rail Delivery Group said: “The rail industry is constantly working together to research and develop new products to help customers save money when they travel by train. Students can save 1/3 off most journeys with a 16-25 Railcard, providing them with more opportunities to catch-up with friends, family, attend job interviews and explore new places further afield for less.”

Santander’s 1|2|3 Student Current Account is available online and to all students, regardless of their year of study. In addition to the four-year Railcard, the Santander account offers: 

•    A guaranteed overdraft4 for customers accepted for the account. An interest-free arranged overdraft of £1,500 is provided in the first three years of study, £1,800 in the fourth year and £2,000 in the fifth year (if students continue with their studies);
•    Cashback of up to 15% on debit card spending at selected retailers through Retailer Offers5, with welcome offers including Virgin Experience Days and discounts on theatre tickets;
•    Contactless debit card, digital banking (mobile / online) and mobile payments (Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay);
•    Easy switching to Santander with the Current Account Switch Service;
•    Access to exclusive 1I2I3 World benefits including preferential deals on other financial products.6 

Over the last 20 years, Santander has donated £105 million through its Universities programme, investing around £8 million a year across our 85 partner universities. The work done through the Santander Universities team is a central part of the bank’s Responsible Banking strategy, recognising the role that education and universities play in society, giving Santander unique credibility in the market not just in the UK but globally.

Santander’s focus is on Education, Entrepreneurship and Employability – providing support including scholarships, bursaries, inclusive programmes, support for businesses, access to Santander networks and experts, internships, mobility awards, job creation, skills development.

To open an account or for more information, visit

- Ends -

The information contained in our press releases is intended solely for journalists and should not be used by consumers to make financial decisions.

Notes to Editors:
1    Santander’s 1|2|3 Student Current Account:
       a.    Guaranteed interest-free arranged overdraft: £1,500 in years 1, 2 and 3; £1,800 in year 4; £2,000 in year 5
       b.    Contactless debit card (subject to status)
       c.    Easy access - withdraw up to £300 daily without charge
       d.    Terms and conditions apply. Please visit
2    Average savings made by 16-25 Railcard holders between April 2021 and March 2022, excluding price of Railcard multiplied by four years is £636.
3    Based on volume of new account openings using CACI’s Current Account and Savings Database. Santander had a 41% Market Share of new student accounts in 2021, making it the largest provider of student accounts according to data from CACI. 
4    Guaranteed overdraft if accepted for the 1|2|3 Student Current Account.

5    More detail on Retailer Offers can be found here. Welcome Offers through Retailer Offers are available to new-to-bank customers only. 

6    Detail on what offers 1|2|3 World customers can receive here. 

Santander Universities 
Banco Santander is firmly committed to progress and inclusive, sustainable growth, with a long-standing dedication to higher education that sets it apart from the world's other financial institutions. Banco Santander has committed more than EUR €2 billion and awarded over 630,000 scholarships and grants since the Universities programme began. It has 1,000 agreements in place with universities and institutions in 31 countries, of which over 80 are in the UK. Through these agreements Santander provides education, entrepreneurship and employability opportunities for university students and training and support for the growth and transformation of innovative start-ups and SMEs. For further information please visit:  

Santander UK is a financial services provider in the UK that offers a wide range of personal and commercial financial products and services. At 31 December 2020, the bank had around 21,900 employees and serves around 14 million active customers, via a nationwide branch network, telephone, mobile and online banking. Santander UK is subject to the full supervision of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) in the UK. Santander UK plc customers’ eligible deposits are protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) in the UK.

Banco Santander (SAN SM, STD US, BNC LN) is a leading retail and commercial bank, founded in 1857 and headquartered in Spain. It has a meaningful presence in 10 core markets in Europe and the Americas, and is one of the largest banks in the world by market capitalization. Its purpose is to help people and businesses prosper in a simple, personal and fair way. Santander is building a more responsible bank and has made a number of commitments to support this objective, including raising over €120 billion in green financing between 2019 and 2025, as well as financially empowering more than 10 million people over the same period. At the end of 2020, Banco Santander had more than a trillion euros in total funds, 148 million customers, of which 22.8 million are loyal and 42.4 million are digital, 11,000 branches and 191,000 employees.