HSBC switching bonus makes a comeback, but is it any good?
Banks have often used current account switching bonuses as a way of enticing new customers.
HSBC has just relaunched it's impressive £200 switching bonus for anyone signing up to its Advance current account and sticking around for a year.
However, to qualify you'll need to pay in at least £1,750 a month, or a minimum £10,500 every six months.
So how does it compare to other top switching offers on the market? You can compare the benefits and features of the top current accounts by visiting a comparison centre, or you can read on to see out summary of the top offers.
HSBC – £200 cash bonus
The £200 bonus is paid in two parts: £150 within 30 days of you opening the account, and £50 if you stick around for 12 months.
While the £1,750 monthly deposit is pretty strict compared to other banks, the account does have a few nifty perks.
For starters, you'll get £250 off booking fees on HSBC mortgages. You'll also get access to its Regular Saver account, which pays 5% on monthly deposits of up to £250. That means at least some of your savings will be beating inflation.
M&S Bank – £125 in vouchers
Sadly, it's not a cash reward, but you can pocket £125 in M&S vouchers when you join M&S Bank.
You just need to switch to the M&S Current Account or M&S Premium Current Account using the Current Account Switch Service and move a minimum of two active Direct Debits.
The £125 switching bonus will appear in your account once everything is wrapped up.
You can then get a £5 top up on the gift card each month that a minimum of £1,000 is paid into your account and two Direct Debits remain active, for up to 12 months after you switch.
So that's a total of £185 in year one – provided you meet all the criteria.
The fee-free M&S Current Account gives you access to a monthly savings account paying 5%, £100 fee-free overdraft and the chance to earn M&S Loyalty points each time you spend.
The M&S Premium Current Account offers all that plus a range of other benefits in return for a £10 monthly fee.
With the account, you can get yearly vouchers worth £95 including a birthday gift worth £10, 48 hot drink vouchers per year worth £127, preferential rates on selected products, access to exclusive offers and triple points in M&S stores and online
First Direct – £100
First Direct offers a £100 incentive to those that open its 1st Account and pay in at least £1,000 within three months.
There's a £10 monthly fee for the account after six months unless you pay in at least £1,000 a month or hold another First Direct product.
The account comes with a £250 interest-free overdraft, exclusive access to leading rates on loans and savings, plus an award-winning level of customer service with real people on hand 24/7.
It also comes with a satisfaction guarantee. First Direct promises to pay £100 to those unhappy with the account that decide to leave within a year of joining.
Halifax – £75 up front
Halifax is offering a £75 bonus to new customers that switch to its Reward Current Account or Ultimate Reward Account.
The Reward Current Account is a good option as it also pays £3 a month (as long as you deposit at least £750 each month, have two Direct Debits set up and stay in credit). So, after one year you could have earned £161.
The bonus will be paid into your account after you've completed the switch when you use the Current Account Switch Service to transfer and close your old account.
You can also earn as you spend on your debit card with a scheme called Cashback Extras, which allows you to earn money when you shop at certain retailers online or in store.
Finding the best deal
When switching current account, it's important to consider what your long-term needs are as well as the short-term gains a cash or voucher bonus can provide.
Other accounts like the TSB Classic Account and the Santander 123 Current Account for example offer decent levels of interest that could provide more value in the long-term, and not just give your bank balance a quick boost.
You can compare the benefits and features of the top current accounts by visiting the loveMONEY Yahoo comparison centre.