This weekend marks the last chance to bag a 100 bonus when signing-up for the top current account for those regularly overdrawn.

The Alliance & Leicester (A&L) current account, which offers a 0% overdraft for a year (then 50p per day) and annual European travel insurance for those who deposit at least 500 a month, will shed its 100 sign-up bonus by 11.59pm on Sunday night.

Yet A&L owner Santander will add a 100 bonus to its Preferred In Credit Rate account from Monday to make it the top deal for those usually in credit (see Best Bank Accounts guide).

The account also comes with 5% pre tax interest on balances up to 2,500 for the first year (then 1%) and a four-month interest free overdraft if you can deposit at least 1,000 per month.

In theory, you could get 225 of rewards via that account with the sign-up bonus and interest.

However, as most will pay tax on interest and as you'd need to hold a constant 2,500 balance, which is unlikely, few will earn this much.

On an average 1,250 balance, a basic rate taxpayer would earn 50 interest a year, plus the 100 bonus. On a 500 balance, this falls to 20 + 100.

How to grab the A&L or Santander bonus

Whichever deal you plump for, you must:

  • Transfer all your direct debits/standing orders to A&L/Santander.
  • Deposit at least 500 per month (A&L) or 1,000 per month (Santander).


  • You won't qualify if you already hold or have held an A&L, Santander, Cahoot or Cater Allen current account in the last 3 months.
  • If you do not have any direct debits to switch you will not receive the 100 bonus.
  • To get either account and a reasonable overdraft limit you will need a good credit score.

Expect the 100 to arrive as a credit in your account within three months.

The 100 bonus will also apply to the Santander Zero current account from Monday, though this is only available to Santander mortgage and investment customers.

It comes with the same 5% interest deal, no commission on overseas transactions and no fees if you exceed your overdraft limit.

Alternative accounts

The Halifax reward current account comes with a 50 sign-up bonus if you apply via price comparison site, plus a 5 per monthly reward, regardless of balance, if you deposit at least 1,000 per month.

While not as rewarding as the Santander account in year one, the monthly payment is ongoing, making it attractive for those who don't want to switch regularly.

Further reading/key links

Top accounts: Best Bank Accounts
Reclaim cash: Bank Charges

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