HSBC offers £200 current account switching offer

100 back pocket money

HSBC are offering £200 to new customers switching to - and staying with - their Premier and Advance current accounts.

While it may be the most generous switching reward available at the moment, however, it's not available to just anyone.

Those signing up for the Advance Account need to make a monthly deposit of at least £1,750.

The Premier Account is yet more exclusive, requiring customers to either have an income of more than £100,000 or £50,000 worth of investments.

For those who do qualify, HSBC say the switch must be made through the Current Account Switching Service (CASS), and will only be available until July 10th.

How it works

As well as meeting these criteria, customers also need to be patient, as the full reward comes in two stages.

The switching service guarantee means that once we've checked the paperwork, the process of moving all our banking - including at least two monthly direct debits or standing orders - to the new account should take no more than seven days.

Once we've successfully negotiated that, we'll receive £150.

The remaining £50 will be transferred 12 months later, providing that we've registered for internet or mobile banking within 60 days of opening our account, and met the eligibility criteria for our chosen product for at least nine of the 12 months.

HSBC Advance

To qualify for the Advance Account, customers must pay in at least £1,750 every month, or a minimum of £10,500 every six months. These sums can't include money transferred from other HSBC accounts.

As a rough guide, applicants will need to be earning at least £26,500 - just under the national average salary for 2015 - to cover the monthly deposit from their wages, after tax and National Insurance to qualify.

Those who qualify will receive what HSBC call "preferential" rates on their overdraft - as well as on loans and savings - compared to those available to holders of HSBC's Bank or Current Accounts.

Other perks include not being charged HSBC's non-sterling cash fee when making withdrawals abroad, although a transaction fee of 2.75% will still apply.

HSBC Premier

The criteria for opening a HSBC Premier Account are far stricter, requiring customers to pay in an annual income of at least £100,000, and also have a mortgage, investment, life insurance or other protection product with HSBC in the UK.

The alternative is to have savings or investments worth at least £50,000 banked with HSBC.

As well as the switching bonus, those who qualify for the Premier Account will be offered a £500 interest-free overdraft facility, as well as better deals on savings products, loans and mortgages.

They'll also get free worldwide travel insurance (if they're under 70) - and access to the HSBC Premier Golf Network, which the bank says will enable people to "live golf" should they wish.

It's worth noting, too, that while switching to an Advance Account can be carried out online, HSBC say that to use the Current Account switching service with a Premier Account, customers must go into a branch or call the bank's dedicated switching team.

Is it worth it?

Making the move
How to switch current accounts
Who pays the most interest?
Who gives the best customer service?

For those who meet the criteria, HSBC's switching bonus is relatively generous.

However, the fact that switchers only actually get £150 to start with makes it more comparable with other switching offers available for moving to somewhat less exacting current accounts.

For example, Co-op are currently offering £150 to those who move to their current account via the switching service, as long as in doing so they also move at least four active Direct Debits.

The fact that there's no minimum monthly deposit will no doubt appeal to those who don't earn enough to qualify for the HSBC offer.

Those who can deposit at least £800 a month, however, and who stay within the limits of any agreed overdraft can sign up for the account's cashback scheme, which can earn them up to £5.50 a month.

The next best offer comes from First Direct, who will give £100 to new customers switching to the First current account.

Customers must pay in at least £1,000 within three months of the account being opened - and to avoid paying a monthly fee on the account, they'll need to continue to make monthly deposits of at least £1,000.

Halifax, too, are advertising a £100 switching bonus for new current account customers - and they famously offer a monthly credit of £5 to those who pay in a minimum of £750 a month, set up at least two direct debits, and stay in credit.

For those who are eligible for HSBC's premium accounts, the added incentive is a nice touch - but whether the rest of what the Advance Account in particular can offer is enough to draw potential switchers from the less demanding competition remains to be seen.

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