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Best current account switching incentive: earn £200 by changing bank

HSBC is offering new customers £200 – but is there a catch?

HSBC is the latest bank to launch a switching incentive, offering new customers £200 if they move to the HSBC Advance bank account.

The banking giant’s cash switching incentive is currently the largest on the market, beating the likes of NatWest, Barclays and Halifax.

Find out how HSBC’s incentive compares with other switching deals and how to find the best bank accounts.


What is HSBC offering new customers?

New customers who successfully open an HSBC Advance Bank account by 30 June 2018 will receive £200 in cash, paid in two instalments.

An initial £150 will be paid 30 days after the switch is complete, and the remaining £50 will be paid a year after the new account has been registered.

You will also receive a six-month interest and fee-free overdraft.

To be eligible for the account you’ll need to:

  • Set up two direct debits/standing orders
  • Pay in at least £1,750 a month or £10,500 over six months
  • Switch via the Current Account Switching Service (CASS)
  • Register online or via mobile banking within 60 days of opening the account

Find out more: how to switch your bank account

How does HSBC’s switching offer compare?

HSBC’s offering is the largest cash switching incentive on the market at the moment.

It’s particularly appealing if you’d rather have a cash lump sum than a voucher or money paid incrementally, and if you tend to make use of your overdraft.

However, the minimum monthly payment of £1,750 (which would require a gross annual salary of over £25,910) is the highest on the market, so the HSBC Advance account won’t be suitable for everyone.

Check out the table below for a quick round-up of the current account switching incentives currently available and scroll down for further details.

  HSBC M&S Bank Barclays NatWest RBS Halifax First Direct
Switching offer £200 £185 gift card £132 £100 £100 £75 Gifts or travel vouchers
Deadline 30 June 2018 n/a 29 June 2018 12 July 2018 6 July 2018 n/a n/a

Switch to M&S Bank for £185

M&S Bank is offering £185 to new customers of the M&S Bank current account.

The M&S Bank account pays £5 a month as long as two direct debits are set up and a minimum of £1,000 is paid into the account.

Once you’ve successfully switched, M&S Bank will send you a £125 gift card.

Then, for the first year after you switch, your gift card will be topped up with £5 a month when you meet the monthly requirements of the account – adding an extra £60.

Switch to Barclays for £132

You could get double blue rewards (Barclays’ rewards scheme) for 12 months and earn £132 when you switch to Barclays by 29 June 2018.

To qualify for the scheme, you’ll have to pay in a minimum of £800 a month, set up two direct debits and pay a monthly fee of £3.

A potential disadvantage of this offer is that the money you earn is built up over a 12-month period rather than being given in a lump sum.

Switch to NatWest for £100

NatWest is offering new customers £100 to switch to one of its Select or Reward accounts by 25 June 2018.

To be eligible for either account, you’ll need to pay in a minimum of £1,500 per month, which has to be received online or through the mobile banking app before 12 July 2018.

Switch to RBS for £100

The Royal Bank of Scotland is offering £100 to new and existing customers who switch their main account online by 6 July 2018.

RBS account holders will also benefit from 2% reward cash on household bills – which could earn you an average of £83 per year.

You can also enjoy fee-free debit card purchases abroad until 31 August 2018.

You’ll need to pay in at least £1,500 and log into digital banking or the RBS mobile banking app by 24 August to be eligible.

Switch to Halifax for £75

Halifax is offering £75 as an incentive for new customers switching to its Reward or Ultimate Reward accounts.

The Reward account pays £3 a month when you pay in £750, have two direct debits set up and stay in credit.

Customers can also access the Cashback Extras scheme, which offers up to 15% cashback on spending at selected retailers in store and online.

The Ultimate Reward account includes perks including travel insurance, mobile phone insurance and breakdown cover for a monthly fee of £15 – or £12 if you have two direct debits set up and stay in credit.

You’ll need to pay a monthly account fee of £15 (rising to £17 in July), so make sure that the perks are worth the added expense.

Switch to First Direct for gifts and travel vouchers

New customers that switch to First Direct’s 1st account, which comes with a £250 interest-free overdraft, can choose from a range of ‘switcher gifts’.

These include online self-development courses, tech gadgets and £150-worth of Expedia vouchers.

You’ll have to pay in £1,000 within the first three months of opening the account to qualify.

How to find the best bank account

Switching offers can really sweeten the deal when it comes to choosing a bank account. But it’s important to make sure that you select a bank account that suits your financial needs, rather than simply going for the largest switching incentive.

Shopping around can help you compare different deals and pick out the best bank accounts.

Another thing to bear in mind is the quality of customer service that a bank offers, to ensure your banking experience runs smoothly and you get the best possible help when you need it.

For more tips on finding the right bank account for you, check out our reviews of the best and worst banks.

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