I opened an Alpari Uk account because the person who's signals i follow also uses Alpari. However, he uses Alpari US and what i did not know at the time is that they are actually both setup as different companies and so spread sizes vary and because they use different banks (Alpari Uk uses Barclays, Deutsche Bank among others, while Alpari US uses banks on their side of the pond) crucially for me the price feed is quite different from one another. Of course neither is Alpari's fault - although the same name they are set up as different entities and that's just how it is - it was therefore purely my presumption that it would all be the same, so, i say this for what's its worth to someone that might otherwise make the same assumption as me.
The reason I chose Alpari UK was that as a uk resident i figured it would just be easier to fund and withdraw money. I like to avoid Bank transfer fees and the time involved with this process and therefore prefer and look for UK-based brokers. So, initially funding was easy and quick with a debit card and the money resurfaced in my trading account within a couple hours at most. This is very important to me and can be crucial even- the ability to add funds quickly at a whim, either to protect margin call, or so as to be able to re-enter a trade at a new better level.
Unfortunately, lately there was an issue where they were fixing their debit/credit card payment system and they did not accept payment by those methods. This was an inconvenience i was willing to accept over the weekend or for a day, but in fact it has carried on for several weeks. Yes, weeks! several of them! What is more no one was able to even say when this would be finished and no date was given. Only now as of writing have i been told that they are looking to have the issue concluded in 2 weeks time. This has meant that i've had to transfer funds via bank transfer and although because both banks are in the uk there were no fees involved, it did mean waiting 4 working banking days. Ok, this might be a one-off disruption of service and irrelevant to users after and once this is settled but it lacked imagination and care to ask their customers to bear this for so long.
Finally, the only other thing that bothers me about Apari UK is that all their staff all seem to be French? I have nothing against France, which is one of my favourite countries and i speak french too, but i do find it odd that when i call in with a technical query or otherwise to Alpari UK, i always get someone with a heavy french accent. If they have that many French clients then why not have a number people can press on the switchboard, to get through to them? but as an english-speaking person to feel you're talking to a french person who is doing their best to speak to you in english lacks a certain clarity. It can be a real barrier. Maybe not a biggie, but it annoys me a little...
They do have these promotions but the amount of lots required to trade to qualify to receive them means they are meaningless carrots. I'd prefer to see real incentives and bonuses given without qualification.
As far as execution is concerned, sometimes requotes are required even though like everyone they claim instant execution, so, as expected even if it is frustrating when it happens, but that is true with most brokers i think.
Overall, i see nothing special about Alpari... very run of the mill broker - not the worst but not the best either, imho.