YNAB In The UK & Budgeting Application Alternatives

While YNAB works in the UK, it’s predominantly targetted at the larger North American audience, specifically the USA due to the countries buying power.

If you’re using the web-based YNAB application then you can use the settings feature to adjust the currency from USD to GBP.

How To Change Currency On YNAB

In order to change the currency from USD to GBP, you’ll need to set up a budget and then go to the budget settings which is available from the dropdown under the budget name on the left-hand side.

This will trigger a pop-up which allows you to change the currency format as well as the date format.

Does YNAB work in the UK a look at our budget here in the UK which is displayed in GBP.

Once you click the apply settings button your budget numbers will adjust based on the settings you changed.

The Problem With Using YNAB In The UK

There is sadly one feature that those based in the UK can not use on YNAB which those based in North America can and that’s the auto-import feature.

This allows you to connect the YNAB application with your bank and bank accounts to auto-import transactions.

For many, this feature is a necessity. However, personally I find that I’m much more connected to my money when I sit down and manually enter my transactions.

It helps me to find stray transactions and keep connected to the money I’m spending and what I’m spending it on.

Hopefully, YNAB will be able to add auto-import from UK based banks soon, to allow those who wish to auto-import transactions the means to do so.

It’s a shame that those of us in the UK using YNAB have to pay the same price as those in the USA who get additional features.

However, YNAB is still my budgeting application of choice in the UK and I recommend it to anyone who’ll let me!

While I know it’s one of the more expensive budgeting applications on the market, I feel that it’s unique and has helped me save a significant amount of money (way more than the annual cost) and has given me incredible peace of mind.

That said, not everyone loves YNAB as much as I do, and I appreciate that. Which is why I’ve put together the best free YNAB alternative budgeting apps.

I’ve personally tried all these free budgeting apps, I’ve found flaws and I’ve found things I LOVE about them, so let’s find out which one is right for you.


Mint is perhaps one of the best well-known budgeting applications, partly because it’s one of the oldest.

The application is currently owned by Intuit – the same company that owns Quickbooks and TurboTax. An offers a number of fantastic features that help you both track and manage your money seamlessly.

Mint links directly to your debit and credit cards and imports your transactions, categorising them based on AI.

These categories are aligned to your budget which you’ll pre-set and tweak depending on your needs.

Mint will alert you when you go over budget, and provide you with incredible highly detailed reports to help you analyze where your money is going each month.

Pocket Guard

Pocket Guard similar to mint links to all your financial accounts and synchronises automatically to help you categorise and track your spending throughout the month.

Pocket Guard tracks each of your individual bills and will help you find places where you can save money i.e. changing your electric provider.

Should you choose to switch, you’ll save some money and Pocket Guard earns a referral fee (that’s what allows the application to be free) it’s a win-win!

If you’re just getting started with budgeting then Pocket Guard is certainly one of the best free YNAB alternative applications you’ll find!


Wally is a mobile budget application only, which totally ruled it out as one of the best free YNAB alternative applications for me personally.

However, for many, that’s more than enough, which is why this application has taken off when it comes to Millenial budgeting.

Of course, being smartphone-based only there’s a limit to apps features. However, the one feature you do need from a budgeting app, the ability to budget… Wally has it down!

Good Budget

Good Budget is based on the popular envelope budgeting method and has both a mobile and desktop application that’s completely free to use.

There is a plus version for $6 per month or $50 annually, but it’s not necessary to use the basic structure of the application.

When you add a new transaction into Good Budget you’ll be able to add a whole host of information and split the expense up into multiple envelopes (what many of us would consider categories).

Good Budget has both sharing and synchronising budget features which make it the ideal choice for those of you who are working on a budget as a couple!


Every Dollar, the popular budgeting application created by personal finance expert Dave Ramsey is much the same as Good Budget.

Here you’ll be working towards a zero-based budget. Therefore assigning every dollar a ‘job’ until you the total amount you’ve budgeted equated to your total income.

Again, this application is available on both mobile and desktop and has both a basic free version (which is more than enough for the majority) or a paid version which is billed annually at $129.99

Every Dollar was the application I was using before making the switch to YNAB. They work on the same budgeting format, the zero-based budget, however, I personally found the reporting and general user experience on YNAB to be much better than what I was experiencing on Every Dollar.

Clarity Money

Clarity Money is a budgeting application you may not have heard of. This newcomer to the market is comprehensive in helping you budget and save money.

Again you can connect your financial accounts with the application and automatically synchronise transactions between the two.

From there you’ll be able to organise, categorise and track your expenses.

The added features such as subscription cancellation service and credit score monitoring make Clarity Money a solid choice when looking for the best free YNAB alternative.

Personal Capital

When you think of Personal Capital, you may think of investments. However, the application is actually much more of an all-in-one financial service.

The free application includes many helpful features for budgeters who are looking to monitor their spending.

If you’re already using Personal Capital, then you can use the application to monitor checking accounts, savings accounts, credit cards and even, IRAs, 401ks, mortgages and loans.

All of this provides an incredible amount of data that can be used to analyse your net worth, financial future and your monthly expenses.


Empower is offering a similar all-in-one service to that of Personal Capital however, it’s only available in a mobile format.

If you’re open to using just a mobile application, then this very well may be the one for you. It’s won a host of awards and been featured in loads of mainstream publications!

The application allows you to customize your budget easily, tailoring it to your lifestyle while also providing you with spending limits.

You’ll get real-time information to tell you how your spending is matching up with your budgeting.

If all that wasn’t enough, then what I’d consider Empower’s superpower and why you may choose is as the best free YNAB alternative for you is the AI that’s used to study your income and spending, which in turn allows Empower to know the exact amount of money you can save each month.

Zero math required!