Open a new Halifax Ultimate Reward account to get the free cash.
Switching bonuses are a great way to get some free cash, but once you’ve worked your way around all the banks the fun is over, right? Wrong! More and more of the bonuses are open to existing or ex-customers.
And that’s the case with this new offer from Halifax. Here’s who can get a second switching bonus and how.
Who can get Halifax’s £100 switching bonus?
On 7 July 2021 Halifax brought back a £100 switching bonus. It last ran in April and May – but this time it’s slightly different.
To get this you need to open up a new Ultimate Reward account before 3 August 2021. Once you’ve successfully done this (a credit check will take place), you can start your switch.
You’ll need to fully close the old account you switch over and it needs to be from a different bank. So you can’t switch from another Halifax account.
You also can’t have received a switch bonus from Halifax since April 2020, but it means a load of people will be eligible who’ve had the offer in the past.
The bonus will be paid by three days of your switch completion, which can be as fast as seven working days after you start the switch.
Sadly this time the offer isn’t running for the Halifax Reward account.
Avoiding the Ultimate Rewards monthly fee
The downside to the Ultimate Rewards account is that it comes with a £17 monthly fee. In return you get a bundle of insurance products. These can be decent value if you need them all – but you still might be able to get a better deal from similar accounts elsewhere.
The good news is you can avoid this £17 if you don’t want to keep the account. When I took advantage of the same offer last summer, I assumed it would mean I’d really only make £83 profit.
But as soon as the cash arrived in my account, I went into my Halifax app and downgraded the account to a standard Halifax current account which is free.
This change was instant, and the £17 charge never came! Of course, things might have changed but I imagine it will be the same for you. And the worst that can happen is you do get charged for one month – you’re still up by £83.
How existing Ultimate Reward customers can get the bonus
It’s good news for existing Halifax customers as you can still get the bonus if you’ve not had a switching bonus from Halifax since April 2020.
However, unlike when Natwest last allowed customers to switch in and get a bonus, Halifax won’t let you switch into a pre-existing account. You do have to open up a new account.
If you have any other kind of Halifax account you can simply open up the Ultimate Reward account. And if you already have this one, then fortunately that’s not going to be a problem either.
You simply need to downgrade your existing UR account to any other type of Halifax account. Then apply for a new UR account, and switch as normal! I’ve got confirmation from Halifax that this is ok.
Of course if you do this there could be some differences to your insurance policies so do compare these before making the decision to downgrade the existing account.
Here’s confirmation from Halifax via webchat that you can downgrade an Ultimate Rewards account and then open up a new account.
Andy’s top reward current accounts
- Halifax Rewards: £5 a month or 12 free cinema tickets
- Club Lloyds: Free magazine or 6 cinema tickets
- Santander 123 Lite: Cashback on bills
Get more details on these on my list of the best bank account offers
Which old account should you switch?
You can switch pretty much any full current account over, though bear in mind to get the bonus this will be closed down.
I always think it’s worth having an account you use just for switching, as this means you can take advantage of offer after offer without losing the benefits you might enjoy on another account.
Here’s more in my guide to why I have more than one account.
Which Halifax account should I downgrade to?
As I mentioned I don’t think it’s worth most people sticking with the Ultimate Reward account once you’ve got the bonus cash in your account.
The standard Reward is the best option for most people to downgrade to. You can get £5 a month by jumping through a few hoops. Here’s more on how to do this. So I’d certainly go for this account if you don’t already have it.
Of course if you already have this you won’t be able to downgrade to it this time. So your other option is the free Current Account. This doesn’t require any direct debits, monthly payments in or anything like that. So it can just sit there ready to switch when another bank offers a decent offer.