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Mar 16, 2020

Coronavirus Update: Banking Association says business as usual in most bank branches

In the vast majority of bank branches, business will continue as usual.

In the vast majority of bank branches, business will continue as usual; customer services will also be ongoing during the coronavirus epidemic.

The Hungarian Banking Association highlighted that participants of the banking system are continuously monitoring information on the status of the infection, and guarantee the smooth and continued availability of financial services accordingly.

The Hungarian banking sector is planning to ensure – subject to the risks of the virus situation – that a large number of bank branches operating according to the normal business hours should remain available. Customers may find information on any closed facilities on the websites of specific banks.

As part of a series of crisis management measures, “due to the optimization of bank branch services”, in some less frequented bank branches, personal customer services may be suspended so that banks can regroup staff members to more efficient areas and units.

Members of the banking sector are paying special attention to the electronic availability of banking products and services, they pointed out.

The Hungarian Banking Association is of the opinion that the banking sector’s operation is stable, and this state can be safely maintained.

They are asking customers not to visit branches in person in the event of virus infection symptoms.

Customers should also accept that, for public health reasons, some busy bank branches will only allow a limited number of customers to enter premises at any one time. Upon waiting, customers should keep one meter’s distance from one another. Customers should seek to minimize processing times, and should take care of their business via digital channels wherever possible.

They encouraged people to use Internet, mobile and video banking services and to use the real-time payment service. As a result, they can take care of their finances swiftly, safely and conveniently.

When shopping, customers should use bank cards. With contactless cards, there is no contact with other people, and so this solution is not only practical but also hygienic, they stated.

Due to restrictions on the number of personnel and customers allowed on the premises, customers may be required to wait outside some busy bank branches. For this eventuality, the Hungarian Banking Association is asking customers to remain patient.

A call center set up for advice on the coronavirus can be reached on +36-80-277-455 and +36-80-277-456 or by email under koronavirus@bm.gov.hu