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Santander credit card holders can earn £100 holiday cashback

Paloma Kubiak
Written By:
Paloma Kubiak

New and existing Santander credit card customers can earn 1% cashback on foreign holiday spend. But how good is this offer?

All Santander UK Mastercard credit card holders, including those with old off-sale cards, will be automatically enrolled into the cashback offer, which will be paid on top of the usual card benefits.

But to get the 1% cashback, customers need to spend a minimum £500 on foreign holiday spending which can be accrued from today until Sunday 18 September.

The maximum cashback offered is £100 (£10,000 spend) and will be paid in September.

It applies to any purchase of goods or services, such as hotels, dinners, travel or holiday activities, made by eligible cardholders or additional cardholders.

It excludes ATM withdrawals, balance transfers, cash advances, travellers’ cheques, foreign currency and money orders, interest, unauthorised or fraudulent transactions, account charges of any kind (if applicable), advances used for lottery or gambling payments, or Direct Debits or standing orders paid into the account.

Now, it’s important to note that the cashback is calculated on the sterling value after the transaction has cleared so the conversion and cashback calculations are based on the FX rate at the point of purchase.

Another important point to note is that when spending abroad, customers are given a choice of paying in sterling or the local currency. Santander confirms that customers need to select to pay in the local currency to accrue the cashback.

Lastly, while you may be relaxing on holiday, don’t take your eye off the ball when it comes to paying off your credit card and holiday spends. Any spend is treated as a normal purchase and is subject to your normal repayment and interest terms and conditions.

Matt Hall, head of cards and loans at Santander UK, said: “For many of us, this is our first summer holiday abroad for two years, and to celebrate we’re giving our Mastercard credit card customers cashback on their holiday spending. Whether up a mountain, relaxing by a pool or enjoying the hustle and bustle of a new city, customers will be able to automatically earn cashback on their purchases while abroad.”

How good is this holiday spend cashback offer?

The cashback deal applies to all Santander UK Mastercard credit cards such as the Zero, All in One, World Elite, 123, and Everyday Mastercard credit card products including the Everyday Long Term Balance Transfer and the Everyday No Balance Transfer Fee Credit Cards. Anyone with a historic Mastercard credit card is also eligible.

But, a non-sterling transaction fee of 2.95% applies to transactions made on both Everyday credit cards which would easily outstrip the cashback offering. The table below lists the charges for foreign credit card spends and withdrawals:

Katie Brain, banking expert at business information and rating site, Defaqto, said: “This seems like a reasonably good cashback offer. However it is worth comparing the options available to you. With the Santander Everyday cards the customer still has to pay a 2.95% transaction fee, and there are currently 10 credit cards available with no fees to use your card abroad, three of these are widely available (no additional account or existing current account are required). Some of these cards also offer a 0% purchase offer which could be useful to spread out the holiday spending.

“The other Santander cards have monthly fees, Santander All in One card £3 per month, and World Elite £15 per month, so the fees may not outweigh the cashback benefit, especially if you only decide to take out this card to use on your travels.

“There are five current accounts which also offer no fees for use abroad, and no monthly charge. Chase Bank will also give you 1% cashback on any purchases for 12 months, not just for spending abroad, this could be an alternative option if you don’t mind an account which is operated only by mobile app (although there is a three-five week waiting list to open an account).”

Defaqto lists these credit cards with no fees abroad:

It also lists these current accounts with no fees abroad:

Chase current account, Starling Bank current account, Virgin Money M Plus account, Cumberland Day2Day (24+) – local customers only and Cumberland Plus – local customers only.