Santander launches 5.2% easy access account

Be quick – it won’t be around for long

The best easy access savings rate in 14 years is available – but only for a limited time. Here’s how new and existing Santander customers can get it.

*UPDATE 12/9/23 – New applications for the account will close today – five days earlier than the original deadline*

How does the Santander Easy Access Saver work?

The new account from Santander is called the Easy Access Saver Limited Edition (issue 3). It pays 5.2% interest, but only for 12 months. After this the money will be moved into an Everyday Saver account – which will pay a fair bit less!

It’s a variable rate account which means the rate could well change in the year. Hopefully upwards, but there’s no guarantee it’ll move with future Bank of England base rate increases.

There are no restrictions on deposits or withdrawals, and you can both open and manage the account via the app, online, over the phone or in branches.

The minimum deposit is £1, and the maximum is £2m – but the interest is only paid on balances of up to £250,000. Bear in mind only £85,000 will be protected by FSCS, though that’s doubled for joint accounts.

You’re only allowed to have one of these in your name, whether personal or joint. However you can have previous issues alongside this (though at much lower rates).

When is it available until?

It’s a limited edition account, which means it’ll only be available to open for a short period. Though the official end date for applicants is 17 September 2023, it could be withdrawn earlier – something I think is incredibly likely.

Previous issues of the account with similar high rates (for that time) were also limited edition, and they also ended earlier than the published date. So don’t stick around if you want it.

** Update – the account will close to new applications at 23:59 on Tuesday 12 September 2023 **

Who can get Santander’s 5.2% paying account?

The account is open to everyone, regardless of whether you are already a Santander customer or not.

You do however need to be a UK resident and over 17 years old.

What if you already have a Santander easy access account?

This issue of the Easy Access account is a brand new account. If you have a previous issue it won’t automatically change to this new edition. Instead you’ll need to open up the new one, and then transfer your money across.

Will you pay tax on your interest?

As rates get better and better, there’s an increased chance you’ll pay tax on some of the interest earned. The personal savings allowance (explained here) is either £1,000 or £500, depending on your tax rate. This is how much you can earn before tax is taken on amounts over this.

With a rate of 5.2%, it means you’ll go over the allowance with a balance of £19,231 (as a basic rate tax payer) and £9,615 (as a higher rate tax payer).

That effectively knocks the return (on interest over the allowance) to either 4.16% or 3.12%. These can be beaten in easy access ISAs (find the best ones here) or potentially in Premium Bonds.

How does it compare to other savings accounts?

Santander vs other easy access accounts

When it comes to easy access accounts with no restrictions, this 5.2% rate is clear of the rest by a decent amount. The next highest option (at the time of writing) is My Community Finance at 4.95%. A limited access account is available from Furness Building Society at 5%, but you can only access your money three times a year.

If you have £20,000 to save (and don’t need to access it for six months) you could use a promo code from Chip to get a £50 bonus on top of a 4.84% rate – though the Santander account still edges it based on that rate. You can see all the options here.

Certainly this account means it’s time to ditch the Barclays Blue Rewards Rainy Day Saver – though we can hope it forces Barclays to hike the rates it offers there.

Santander vs Santander’s Edge Saver

However, if you have £4,000 or less you can beat the rate – and that’s also with Santander. Their Edge Saver account pays 7% on balances of up to £4,000. This sounds amazing, but it’s not the whole story.

You need an Edge current account to open an Edge Saver, and that has a £3 monthly fee. Since you also earn cashback on bills you’ll probably find that fee covered in money back on bills, but if not you need to factor that charge in to work out your real return. As long as you have more than £2,000 or so you’ll be getting at least 5.2%. Here’s my full analysis.

Santander vs regular savers

You could also consider a regular saver, with a handful of options paying 5.5% or more. Top of the list is the 7% regular saver from First Direct. You need a current account with the bank to open one, but there’s a £175 switch offer running right now which makes it well worth while. Here’s more on the best regular savers.

Santander vs fixed rate accounts

The big benefit of this Santander account is the easy access – but if you don’t need to get some or all of your cash, then a fixed rate bond will beat it. You can get 6.1% in a nine-month fix and 6.2% in a one year fix. The top paying options are listed in our best buy table.


If you have savings you need to get hold of it’s worth grabbing this while you can. Just remember to move your money after a year (if not before – keep an eye on other rates to see if they beat it).

Santander Easy Access Saver Limited Edition (issue 3)

Interest Rate5.2% AER variable (for 12 months only)
Min deposit£1
Max balance£250,000 (for interest)
Multiple accounts?No
Joint account?Yes
RequirementsYou must be at least 16 years old and a UK resident
Applications close17 September 2023 or earlier

16 thoughts on “Santander launches 5.2% easy access account

  1. Hiya, I was wondering if I would get a hard credit check opening this savings account as a existing Santander customer?

    1. There’s no credit check on pure savings accounts

  2. I opened one this week and transferred money in from a lower interest ISA. I also intend to add to it monthly from my salary. However with four income bonds with Leeds and now this, I will be paying tax next year on the interest for sure, but still better than the last few years’ return on savings. I have premium bonds already and don’t want any more at the moment.

  3. You’re a bit slow picking up on this. My account was open and in use by 10am on Monday and Martin Lewis (Tuesday) was also slow and you copied his article.

    1. The article might have been out Wednesday (timed to coincide with our weekly newsletter) but it was added to our best buy tables 8am Monday morning and posted in our Facebook group. Make sure you book mark those pages and check regularly for the latest updates.

  4. Hi, I posted comment yesterday with question – can you please publish it and post an answer?
    thank you 🙂

    1. I read comments via FB so all understood now 🙂

  5. It seems (almost!) too good to be true. I’ve opened one and moved funds from Chip to it – within seconds. Considering ditching Coventry BS now too!

    As Andy points out, the next ‘worry’ is Income Tax; I’m going to be paying some next year ‘at this rate’!

    Time to consider Premium Bonds again?

    Anyone else getting addicted to moving money around?!

    1. It seems that I have an addiction to moving money about. In this instance from Tandem. Starting with the full £4k into the Santander Edge saver…….

    2. Yes me ! Moving money every day!

  6. while opening this account, you need to select one of the below options:

    ‘You can choose whether you want us to pay interest monthly or yearly into your account.
    Once you’ve chosen, you can’t change your mind. We’ll pay the interest on the monthly or
    yearly anniversary of the day you opened the account’

    In key facts document it says that it gives 5.20% AER/gross (variable) for 12 months from account
    opening if interest is paid annually, and 5.08% AER/gross (variable) – if interest is paid monthly.

    I am not sure if I understand it correctly – if I select that interest is paid monthly than interests will be added to my account each month, which I guess it a better option than if interest is paid annually – which I presume means that only after a year interest will be added to my account?

    I may be completely wrong as to how to understand it, so Andy please add this to your analysis or explain in here, many thanks 🙂

    1. any comment to my post please?

    2. Hi Joanna. It’s 5.2% both ways – the error was on the Santander website. I spoke to their press office and they’ve corrected it there now

      1. This is not the case, there is a different rate for annual and monthly interest. “Santander has today launched a ‘top of market’ easy access account, the Easy Access Saver Limited Edition (Issue 3), which pays 5.20% AER/ 5.08% gross (variable) on savings up to £250,000 for 12 months.”
        This is in their terms and conditions, and also within the app/online banking rate details once you open the account

        1. The AER is 5.2% whether you get interest paid monthly or annually. Of course if you get paid monthly and remove it from your account (or the interest takes your total balance over £250,000) then it won’t compound to 5.2%.

          As mentioned, Santander updated their website after I put the error to their attention

  7. Saw the Santander Easy Access account via another post last night while minding my own business on other things. So I applied and hoped for the best. I had an email from Santander today and it is open. Yes, yes, yes. Hope they don’t lower the interest rates. Ready to move some money into it now.


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