Safe deposit box comparison 2017 – Sydney CBD

This is a safe deposit box comparison I composed in December 2017 by comparing Guardian Vaults, Custodian Vaults, Westpac and Commonwealth Bank safe deposit boxes. Be aware that my purpose is to store A4 sized documents so I cannot use the smallest box.

Main purpose:

  • Storing irreplaceable A4 documents
  • Storing 2.5-inch portable hard drive


  • Sydney CBD or close to CBD
  • The box must larger than A4 document (with some buffer, because the document may be placed in protective cover)
  • Not bending or folding the document
Guardian Vaults
Custodian Vaults Westpac
341 George Street
Commonwealth Bank
120 Pitt Street


Not in CBD
1-19 Booth Street Camperdown
Security rating

Independent high-security vault


Self-service storage
Monday-Thursday 9:00~17:00 8:30~17:30 9:30~16:00 9:30~16:00 24hr
Friday 9:30~17:00 9:30~17:00
Saturday access 10:00~13:00 fortnightly 8:30~12:30
every Saturday
No No
After-hour access Not available Available but expensive1
Non-refundable set-up fee 0 0 0 $60
Refundable key deposit 275+25=$300
$275 for keys
$25 for fob
$250 $250 0
Number of keys issued 2 2 2 1
$60 non-refundable for an extra key
Insurance $10,000 $10,000 No No
Can authorise additional person? 4 additional2 4 additional Yes, but I didn’t ask for detail 4 additional I didn’t ask
Annual fee $404 without using any referral code3
Size B
Size B
Size of the box4
29*56*8 cm 42*68*14 cm 24.6*54*6.6 cm 25*53*6 cm 35.2*49.2*12.5 cm
Number of access Unlimited Unlimited I didn’t ask. 12 free access5 Unlimited
Restrictions Must be a Westpac customer6 Valued customer only7
Booking Not required Not required, but recommended Not required Not required Not required
Authentication Fob
Hand geometry
Photo ID
I didn’t ask. I didn’t ask. PIN
Barrel key lock or padlock
What would happen if the customer lost the keys Need to drill the lock and pay for the cost. Need to drill the lock and pay for the cost. Need to drill the lock and pay for the cost. Bank has a backup key
Interlocked doors Yes No, but the guard has the control of the lift. No No
A dedicated guard always stays behind the glass Yes. If a customer needs assistance, another staff will be called. Technically it’s impossible for the guard to leave the guard room to assist the customer. No. I’ve seen the guard leaving the guard room to assist the customer. But they have other staff in the office. Didn’t see any. Didn’t see any. I didn’t visit the facility.

Feel free to use referral code 501602 and 8737 if you choose Guardian Vaults. Their promotion do change from time to time, so please ask them what you can get by using this code – usually 1~3 months bonus on your first annual contract. Disclaimer: I will receive one month free as well, if someone uses this code. Update: I use Guardian Vaults for 3 years but I’m not currently their customer, because I no longer need to keep those documents in a high-security vault. They are always helpful and reliable, and I would definitely recommend them.

After I open an account at Guardian Vaults, the width inside the box (usable width) is about 23 cm – which is enough for A4 document in a plastic-based protective cover.

1 By request. Require 72 hours notice, and cost $800 per working hour.

2 Each additional person must have a fob, which is $25 refundable.

3 Referral code is 501602 and 8737.

4 The colour is based on the width, as some A4 documents may be placed in a protective cover. A4 document is 21 cm in width.

5 They have two options. Option 1: 12 free access per calendar year, $12 per additional access. Option 2: Unlimited access for $140 per year.

6 $5 monthly service fee of Westpac Choice account may apply.

7 Size B, G and I for valued customers (e.g., home loan) only. Size A (not suitable for A4 document) for all customers but need to wait.

Commonwealth Bank size list

  • Size A (11*53*6 cm)
  • Size B (11*53*11 or 25*53*6 cm)
  • Size G (26*53*26 cm)
  • Size I (44*53*50 or 60*39*100 cm)
Westpac size list
  • Size A (11.5*54.0*6.6 cm)
  • Size B (24.6*54.0*6.6 cm)
  • Size C (24.6*54.0*12.7 cm)
  • Size D (24.6*54.0*25.4 cm)

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