Direct ISA

New limits. New rules. New ISA.

Now you can save up to £15,000 without paying a penny in tax on the interest

Direct ISA: facts and figures

  • Rate 1.50% tax-free/AER
  • Access No notice, no penalty
  • Tax Tax-free

Suitable for savers who:

  • want to earn tax-free interest
  • are happy to use their account online or by phone
  • have not invested in a cash NISA in the 2014/15 tax year

Not for savers who:

  • want to invest their full allowance in a stocks and shares NISA
  • prefer to use their account at a branch or by post
  • have invested or plan to invest in a cash NISA from another provider this tax year
  • want to transfer in previous years’ investments

Summary box: key product information

Summary box: key product information

Account name

NS&I Direct ISA

Interest rates


Tax status


Conditions for bonus payment

Not applicable

Withdrawal arrangements

No notice, no penalty


Apply, deposit and withdraw online or by phone


Tax-free means that the interest is exempt from UK Income Tax.

AER (Annual Equivalent Rate) is a notional rate that illustrates what the annual rate of interest would be if the interest was compounded each time it was paid. Where interest is paid annually, the quoted rate and AER are the same.

  • Our Direct ISA

    Our Direct ISA offers you a straightforward and secure way to save tax-free and manage your account online and by phone.

    Anyone aged 16 or over who is resident in the UK for tax purposes can open an account. Save from just £1 up to £15,000 in the 2014/15 tax year.

    We only offer a cash NISA, not a stocks and shares NISA.

  • Interest and tax

    You’ll earn a variable rate, which could go up or down. We calculate your interest daily and add it on 6 April each year. We’ll send you a statement shortly after that.

  • The tax-free advantage

    With a tax-free cash NISA, you get to keep all the interest. This means to match a tax-free interest rate of, say, 1.50% you would have to earn a higher rate in a taxable account to end up with the same interest on your savings. Here are the equivalent rates you would need to earn:

    • basic rate taxpayers – 1.87%
    • higher rate taxpayers – 2.50%
    • additional rate taxpayers – 2.72%

    Based on tax rates for 2014/15, correct at the time of publishing.

  • Will NISAs always be tax-free?

    The government has promised to keep NISAs indefinitely. The tax advantages you receive from a NISA depend on your individual circumstances and may change in the future.

    Find out more about tax and savings from HMRC

    Find out more about NISAs in our brochure

  • Ready to apply?

    Read the brochure with terms and conditions before you apply

    We last updated the terms and conditions on 1 July 2014.

    Apply online

    Apply by phone

    Applying under a Power of Attorney or as a Crown employee serving overseas?

    Call us and we'll explain how you can apply.

    Call us

Using your account

Using your account

You can look after your Direct ISA online and by phone. You’ll be able to log in or call us to check your balance, review your transactions and change your personal details. We’ll send you an annual statement every April – you can choose to go paperless or get it by post.

  • Pay money in and take it out

    Pay in by standing order, bank transfer or with your debit card. All your deposits must be from a UK bank account in your own name.

    Standing order

    Give your bank our payee details:

    Payee name: National Savings and Investments
    Account number: 11994808
    Sort code: 08 31 20

    You must quote your Direct ISA account number as the reference, so that the payment reaches the right account.

    Tell the bank how much you want to pay, when and how often.


    Print and complete a standing order form and give it to your bank.

    To cancel, contact your bank – not NS&I.

    Bank transfer

    You can make one off deposits by bank transfer. Give all the above details to your bank and tell them how much you want to pay. For large amounts, check your bank’s upper limit for electronic payments.

    Debit card

    Log in or call us with your debit card details.

    Take money out

    Log in

    Call us

    We’ll pay your payment within three working days..

    You can also send payments to your international bank account.