Barclays launches new rewards programme

Barclays is to offer its customers a brand new rewards programme. Launching this Monday, Blue Rewards is available to current account holders who deposit at least £800 credit each month, have two direct debits set up, and are signed up to Online Banking or the Barclays Mobile Banking app.

Monthly loyalty reward

The rewards programme comes with a £3 monthly fee (£36 a year). All customers who sign up to the programme receive a £7 monthly cash reward paid into their digital Rewards Wallet. This adds up to £48 a year, after the monthly fee is factored in.

The rewards programme comes with a £3 monthly fee

Those who have a Barclays mortgage can then get an extra £5 per month, or £60 per year, while insurance customers get a further £3 per month, an extra £36 per year. This adds up to £144, after the monthly fee is taken off.

Barclays plans to expand cash rewards across its savings and personal loan products.

Cashback reward

Blue Rewards also offers cashback through various ‘Smart Spend’ partners including Expedia, Gap and Boots. The cashback is paid into a separate digital Rewards Wallet, accessed through Barclays Online Banking or the Barclays Mobile Banking app. The rewards can then be paid into a Barclays account.

The verdict

 "Unfortunately, the Blue Rewards aren’t quite as saucy as they sound," says Hannah Maundrell of Money."You’ll be looking at around £48 cash back a year if you don’t have a mortgage or home insurance with them, as the tasty £7 monthly ‘loyalty’ payment will be degraded by a chunky £3 monthly fee. While this is a nice perk if you’re already a loyal Barclays customer and don’t want to switch; in reality it’s likely you’ll be able to earn more elsewhere."

For instance, Halifax pays £5 per month plus a £100 switching fee - and Santander 123, which charges a £2 monthly fee, offers credit interest and cash back on utility direct debits.

Plus Charlotte Nelson at Moneyfacts says there is a danger that if this account is not used wisely the overdraft could extinguish any gains. "Not only will you get charged for going into your overdraft, but you will also have paid a £3 fee on top," she adds.

  • Find out how to switch your current account here. Plus why a current account may be a better home for your savings here.