Martin Lewis shares three steps that will get you £525 in 'free cash'

LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 06: Martin Lewis attends the press night performance of The Wizard of OZ at The London Palladium on July 06, 2023 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/Alan Chapman/Dave Benett/Getty Images)
-Credit: (Image: David M. Benett)


After a dry spell of enticing 'big cash' incentives, the major retail banks are now ramping up their efforts to attract new customers with a variety of tempting offers for switching current accounts. Finance expert Martin Lewis has highlighted three top deals that could give your wallet a welcome lift.

On his popular Martin Lewis Podcast, the money-saving expert celebrated the comeback of generous cash incentives for newcomers, pointing out that three leading banks are currently dangling a carrot of £175 in free cash to switchers. To pocket this tidy sum, all you need to do is transfer some funds into your new account.

Fresh from his stint on Good Morning Britain, where he put Labour and Conservative politicians through their paces on economic policies, Martin Lewis kicked off his podcast with palpable enthusiasm, exclaiming: "It's my pre-election budget giveaway, yes, I am giving you free cash - bank switching bribes are back."

And it doesn't stop at one bank - savvy customers can potentially collect a total of £525 from various high street banks. Mr Lewis added: "So you can grab £175 for free from three different banks and some of you can do it multiple times too."

Consumers received a positive boost when Martin Lewis described the latest big bank switching incentives as a "legal bribe" for new customers. He elaborated: "The three I'm going to highlight first all pay you £175, so if you fancy a little bit of extra cash, why not grab it from your bank?", reports the Mirror.

In order to capitalise on these deals, you must be new customers and must transfer some money and direct debits but then the funds are yours. There are currently three banks offering a £175 bonus alongside many other enticing features and requirements for customers. Astute switchers could potentially accumulate an easy £525 simply by shuffling their funds around.

Martin Lewis hails Santander's 'Edge' account as his top pick from the trio. The account grants an appealing interest rate on savings of up to £4000 in addition to the complimentary £175 in cash - although, people should opt based on their unique circumstances.

Santander Edge

£175 bonus, cashback and 7% interest on savings.

Besides the complimentary cash, the 'Edge' account boasts a high savings interest rate ensuring users can earn 1 per cent of their expenditure on bills, groceries and petrol back as a monthly £20 cashback. To benefit from this deal, individuals will need to deposit at least £1,500 within the opening three months and maintain a rough circulation of £500 through the account each month, as Santander drives to attract additional current account clients.

Martin Lewis highlighted a cashback offer where customers could potentially "gain around £275 in a year", by simply utilising the account. With high-interest savings included, earnings could escalate even more.

Furthermore, the card has no foreign exchange rate, ideal for overseas travel.

First Direct 1st Account

£175 bonus, complimentary Overdraft, high interest

First Direct is also doling out a £175 bonus to those customers who decide to switch their accounts. It is similar to Santander's offerings.

Apart from the complimentary money and 7% interest on savings, the bank offers an overdraft facility up to £250 free of charge. This could be particularly beneficial for those stuck in their overdraft, helping them to navigate paying it off without incurring additional substantial fees.

In order to take advantage of these offers, First Direct says customers must deposit £1,000 into the account within the first 30 days. This capital can then be withdrawn together with five uses of the debit card. The Money Saving Expert said: "If you go into your overdraft occasionally, you could use the free £175 to clear your overdraft, and if you have any left, the rest will be at 0 per cent."

Club Lloyds

£175 bonus, complimentary Disney +, 6.2 per cent interest

Club Lloyds is also serving up a variety of tempting freebies, including a Disney + subscription and a bigger amount that can be saved in their high-interest account. In order to claim this complementary cash and other freebies, a monthly deposit of £2,000 is required, otherwise there's a £3 fee. Three direct debits must be transferred over as well.

Martin Lewis said: "And a linked 6.25 per cent regular saver, you can put a little more money in this than First Direct even though the rate is lower, so the total interest will be more."