Bonus rewards for new Barclays customers
Barclays is offering double rewards, worth up to £16, in January to people signing up to its Blue Rewards scheme, as banks compete to win new current account customers in January.
The double-reward deal is available to people opening accounts or switching to Barclays in January, providing they join the Blue Rewards scheme, which costs £3 a month. Existing customers who aren’t already Blue Rewards members can also sign up.
Members usually get monthly rewards for each qualifying product they hold, receiving £7/month for a current account, £5/month for a mortgage, £3/month for home insurance, and £1/month for loans.
Under the promotion, people will get double cashback in January, to a maximum of £32, or £29 after the monthly fee.
Members will also get double cashback through Barclays’ Smartspend scheme, which pays cashback with some retailers including Boots, Gap and Toys R Us. Travel bookings made in January via Expedia could earn up to 14% cash back, but the amount you’ll get back depends on the retailer.
To qualify for Blue Rewards, customers need to pay at least £800 a month into their account, and set up at least two monthly direct debits and use Barclay’s mobile or online banking services.
Moneywise verdict: If you hold a Barclays account the Blue Reward scheme will pay for itself as the £7 cashback offsets the £3 monthly fee, and if you hold more products it’s better value still.
However, this January offer, as well as the reward scheme generally, shouldn’t be enough to make you switch to Barclays as there are better value incentives elsewhere. For example, if you switch to First Direct they’ll give you £125 cash, and M&S Bank unveiled an offer this week where new customers can get £220 in gift cards.
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.