RBS and NatWest take on Santander
RBS and NatWest have launched a new cashback scheme that offers customers cashback when they shop using their debit card.
In a direct challenge to Santander's 123 account, the new Cashback Plus scheme - which both new and existing current account customers can apply for – offers shoppers the chance to get 1p paid back in cash for every £1 they spend.
The scheme launched with an initial list of 11 retailers, including Café Nero, H. Samuel, BP and Cineworld; while Tesco is also taking part in the scheme for three months until 30 November.
The banks state that once customers have earnt £5 in cashback, it can be paid into their current account or exchanged for gift vouchers. Alternatively, more philanthropic customers can choose to have it paid direct to a charity.
However, in order to be eligible for the cashback, customers must agree to receive "targeted offers from participating retailers which are relevant to them".
Cashback Plus is a challenge to Santander's 123 current account, which pays: 1% cashback on council tax bills, water bills and Santander's own mortgage payments; 2% cashback on gas and electricity bills; and 3% cashback on home phone, broadband, and TV packages as well as mobile phone bills.
However, while the new RBS and NatWest scheme is open to non-fee-paying customers, Santander's 123 account costs £2 a month and customers must pay at least £500 a month into their account.
More details can be found at: cashbackplus.natwest.com/ or cashbackplus.rbs.co.uk.
Issued by a bank as part of a current account and, in a nutshell, serves as electronic cash. Unlike a credit or charge card, where you get an interest-free period before you have to settle the bill, the funds spent on a debit card are withdrawn immediately from your current account. Unless you’ve arranged an overdraft, if you don’t have the cash in the account, you can’t spend it.
An account opened with a clearing bank (few building societies offer current accounts) that provides the ability to draw cash (usually via a debit card) or cheques from the account. Some pay fairly minimal rates of interest if the account is in credit. Most current accounts insist your monthly income (salary or pension) is paid directly in each month and they offer a number of optional services – such as overdrafts and charge cards – which are negotiable but will incur fees.