Barclays has announced it is scrapping its Premier Rewards scheme, which has previously offered Premier Banking customers perks including free English Heritage membership, free coffee at Patisserie Valerie, discounts at a range of restaurants and deals on tickets at Picturehouse cinemas. The bank says it is withdrawing this part of its offering on 15 December 2020 due to a fall in the number of customers using the benefits.
Barclays states it is looking for "new and different ways" to reward customer loyalty. In the meantime, its Premier Current Account customers can access exclusive deals on mortgages, loans and savings accounts, as well as other benefits, such as a dedicated premier relationship team.
Should I switch current accounts?
If you are a Barclays Premier Account customer, you may be considering switching to an alternative premier current account when the Premier Rewards scheme ends. There are a number of alternatives available from rival banks, with a variety of benefits, including cashback offers and preferential rates.
The general rule of thumb is the greater the monthly or annual fee you are willing to pay, the better the rewards and service available. However, there are a number of competitors that offer fee-free options. Indeed, the HSBC Premier Account currently offers £125 cash when you switch from another account.
Am I eligible for a premier current account?
Eligibility for premier accounts is typically based on either having a minimum annual salary of at least £75k per year (with the monthly salary being paid into the account), or having a sizeable mortgage, savings or investments with the bank. Terms may differ if you are applying for a joint account, with the combined salary, savings or investment requirement often being proportionally significantly less.
Which are the best no-fee premier current accounts?
HSBC Premier Account
- Bonus: £125 cash when you switch to an HSBC Premier Account
- Eligibility: You need to earn a minimum of £75k a year or have a minimum of £50k in savings and investments with HSBC and hold a qualifying HSBC product
- Benefits: Preferential mortgage and savings rates, free family worldwide travel insurance from Aviva, fee-free transfers between global HSBC accounts
Preferential rates: 0.20% AER/tax-free on savings in the Loyalty Cash ISA, £500 interest-free arranged overdraft
NatWest Premier Select
- Eligibility: Either pay a minimum £100k sole income or £120k joint income into a NatWest account, or have £500k minimum mortgage borrowing with NatWest or have a minimum £100k in savings or investments with NatWest
- Benefits: One-to-one support for complex financial decisions, access to the NatWest mobile banking app, 24-hour online or telephone support
- Eligibility: Pay your main income of at least £5k a month into the Select Current Account (excluding transfers from other Santander accounts) or have £75k in a Santander investment, savings or current account.
- Benefits: Up to 3% cashback on selected household bills, capped at £5 for each cashback tier each month, fee-free local-currency withdrawals from Santander cash machines abroad, potential to sign up to the Santander Retailer Offers scheme, which offers up to 15% cashback from major retailers
- Rates: Monthly interest of 0.60% AER/gross variable on balances up to £20k
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