The latest news to help you get the most from your bank account.
Here’s my monthly update sharing changes for leading UK current accounts, as well as some of the relevant articles you might have missed on the blog.
November’s bank account update videos
For a more detailed update, watch this video from my YouTube channel.
November’s current account news
Latest bank switching deals
It’s been a couple of months since my last update here, and the big addition in that time is the £200 offer from Nationwide. There’s even the chance to get three lots of cash as a couple, as you can get £200 each for personal accounts and £200 from a joint account. There’s also an 8% regular saver available to current account customers. All the details on both are here.
Also running, though it ends on 14 November 2023, is £175 from Lloyds for its Club Lloyds account. This comes with a 6.25% regular saver and a free year of Disney+, so it’s a decent bundle. All the details here.
And the final standard switching offer from First Direct (£175) remains the same, as do the deals for Co-op’s refer-a-friend switch scheme (£125) and the Barclay’s Premier Banking offer via it’s Avios Rewards scheme.
New HSBC welcome offer
The latest bonus for new HSBC customers isn’t a switching deal – and could be worth £260 in total.
The first stage is to open up a new HSBC Advance or Premier account. You can’t have had any HSBC current account in any time between since 1 October 2018, or opened a First Direct account since the same date.
I’d do this via a cashback site as you can get an extra boost. Right now TopCashback is offering £55 for the Advance account, but check Quidco too as rates can change.
Once you’ve opened the account, pay in £1,500 within 60 days, make five debit card transactions and open an HSBC Global Money account (via the apps) you’ll get £125 paid into that Global Money account.
Then if you use your Global Money card five times before 21 April 2024 you’ll get another £80 added at the start of May next year. You’ll also be entered into a draw next April to win £3,000.
Barclays Blue Rewards adds cashback
Barclays Blue Reward customers can earn 5% cashback on the first £200 spent each month in October, November and December 2023. The cap means the max you’ll earn each month is £10, or a total of £30 over the three months.
I tried the standard hack of using the debit card to top up my Monzo account by £200 and sadly it didn’t work – so you’ll need to do actual spending on your debit card to trigger the money.
If you qualify for the full £10 it’ll be paid after you reach that amount. If it’s less then the money will be added to your cashback account on the 5th of the following month.
You don’t need to opt in, but you do need to be signed up for Barclays Cashback Rewards which is easy to do in your account. Here’s more
First Direct prize draw
Don’t get too excited about this one. If you have a First Direct current account, and use your debit card 30 times before 7 November 2023 you’ll be put into a prize draw.
There are 1,000 prizes worth £300 each. The draw takes place on 15 November 2023.
Monzo trials cashback
Monzo has been trialing a cashback feature with some customers over the last few months. Brean in our team was actually able to try it – she had a notification in the app.
It broadly seems to be specific retailers, such as 8% back at Franco Manca, 10% back from LNER and 5% back from National Express. Deals seem to last two weeks, and then change retailers or restart.
There was a broader 2% “boost” on supermarket spend available too – though this was only for a few months and capped at £30 in total.
At the moment it is just a trial, but an email last week to those with access imply there could be a roll out in mid-November, perhaps around the 9th. Read more about it here, and we’ll let also you know if it becomes an official feature.
Starling makes Kite free
The debit card for kids aged 6 to 15 is now free to add to adult Starling accounts. This used to be £2 a month so it represents a decent saving for any of you with children.
It’s effectively a linked account to your own account (you need to have your own Starling account to add a Kite card) but they’ll get their own card and their own version of the app.
You’ll also get one free kids meal at a National Trust property – whether you’re a new or existing Kite customer.
Monese adds charge for dormant accounts
From 19 December 2023 there are some changes to the free Simple account from Monese – and it means most of you will want to ditch it.
There are a few to be aware of such as:
- no free overseas spending (down from £2,000 a month)
- no free ATM withdrawals (down from £100 a month)
- 30p per virtual card added (currently free)
- an outbound charge of £1 (currently 50 free per month then 20p)
But the biggest one to know about is an inactive account fee of £1 a month. This will be charged if you do not make or receive a payment to the card for 12 consecutive months.
So you can either ensure you add some cash once a year (and use your debit card to spend it as a transfer will cost you £1), or cancel your account.
My top current accounts for November 2023
I always think it’s worth having more than one current account (find out why here) and here’s my run-down of the top accounts to have this month.
- Best account for everyday banking / app – Starling (review)
- Best account for everyday spending – Chase (review)
- Best account for bills – Santander Edge (review)
- Best account for rewards – Halifax Reward (review)
- Best account for savings interest – Santander Edge (review)
- Best account for 0% overdraft – Nationwide FlexDirect (12 months only) (review)