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9 Jul 2019

Barclays Blue Rewards doubles cashback offer: is it worth it?

New customers could earn £120 over 12 months if they switch by November

Barclays has boosted the cash offer on its Blue Rewards scheme, so that new customers could earn £168 over the year - double their current rewards.

People who switch to a Barclays current account by 30 November will be eligible to earn £14 a month for 12 months, up from the standard rate of £7 a month. And if you have another product with Barclays, or are a Premier Banking customer, your earnings could be even higher.

The move comes six weeks after the bank raised the fee for the Blue Rewards scheme from £3 to £4, slashing potential profits by up to 25%.

With the new double-bonus offer, we look at whether it's worth making the switch.

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How does Barclays Blue Rewards work?

Barclays Blue Rewards is an add-on available to customers who use the Barclays app or online banking. To use it, you'll need to pay a £4 monthly fee.

By opting into the scheme, you'll earn £7 monthly cashback payments if you:

  • set up two direct debits
  • pay £800 into your current account each month
  • pay a £4 monthly fee.

You can qualify for additional cashback if you have other Barclays products, including:

  • £5 a month for a mortgage
  • up to £3 a month for home insurance
  • up to £5 a month for life insurance
  • £1 a month for a personal loan.

You can also get 1% cashback for debit card payments with selected retailers.

Blue Rewards boost: what will change?

The current promotional offer is open to any new Barclays customers. Existing customers can only benefit if they switch one of their current accounts from another bank to Barclays.

Under the offer, all rewards offered will double for 12 months, including those you earn for holding additional products. But when working out your profits, you need to factor in the monthly fee, which equates to £48 over the year.

Eligible customers with at least two direct debits will earn up £14 a month under the promotion, meaning you could earn £168 in cashback over 12 months - or £120 once the total fees have been deducted.

The additional rewards for holding Barclays loans, insurance or mortgages will also double during the promotion. This means you could earn up to £504 over the year - or £456 minus the fees.

Products held with BarclaysTotal rewards during promotionTotal profits (rewards minus fees)
Current account with two direct debits£168£120
Current account plus mortgage, home insurance, life insurance and loan£504£456

Triple the rewards for Premier Banking

If you have more than £100,000 saved, or earn at least £75,000 a year, you could switch to Barclays Premier Banking. Your rewards will not just double, but triple.

Like the standard accounts, you'll need to pay a £4 monthly fee to use Blue Rewards and the triple-rewards offer will only last for a year.

For setting up two direct debits, you'd earn £252 a year in cashback, but that would drop to £204 minus fees. If you have an eligible Barclays mortgage, loan, home insurance and life insurance, you'll earn an impressive £756 - or £708 after fees.

Is it worth switching for Barclays Blue Rewards?

If you were ever tempted by Barclays Blue Rewards, now is the time to switch.

Because the monthly fee is unchanged, you'll actually end up with a profit that's three times higher than usual. Under the standard rate, with a current account, you can earn a maximum of £84 - or just £36 once you minus the fee. That's well below the £120 you'll clear during the promotion.

What this means, however, is that the deal becomes much less compelling after the first year. So it may be worth shopping around for other cashback bank accounts.

Which? members rated the Santander 123 Lite account as the best cashback debit card. It offers 1% to 3% cashback on household bills paid by direct debit.

Based on our typical cashback scenario (paying £33 on water, £94 on energy, £40 on mobile phone, £29 on landline/broadband, £18 on TV and £128 on council tax), you could earn £6.84 a month with this account for a £1 monthly fee.

There's also the Co-operative Bank's Everyday Rewards account, which pays £4 a month in cashback plus 5p cashback for debit card transactions (up to £1.50 a month) with no monthly fee. But you'll need to deposit £800 a month and set up four direct debits to benefit.

How do I switch bank accounts?

If you are thinking of switching banks, you can do it quickly and easily using the Current Account Switching Service.

Some banks that don't offer cashback instead pay a cash bonus for new customers

You can read our guide to switching bank accounts for more instructions, and some of the best switching bonuses.