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Natwest and RBS scrapping cashback on bills

Written by: Emma Lunn
Reward account customers currently earn 2 per cent cashback on household bills – but the perk is being axed from 1 February 2020.

About 1.7 million NatWest and RBS current account customers with a Reward account, Reward Silver, Reward Platinum, Premier Reward and Premier Reward Black will stop earning cashback on their bills from February.

At the moment customers with a Reward account with either Natwest or RBS earn 2 per cent cashback on seven household bills: council tax, gas, electricity, water, mobile, TV and landline packages, and broadband, if they’re paid by direct debit.

No more bills cashback

But the cashback will be scrapped from 1 February, with customers incentivised to log into their mobile app and setting up direct debits instead.

From February onwards, customers with the standard Reward account will receive £1 a month for logging into their mobile app, and £4 a month for having two direct debits of at least £2 each.

The changes mean the incentive will be capped at £5 a month whereas currently cashback isn’t limited.

However, the Reward account costs £2 a month – so customers will only make a profit of £3 a month, or £36 a year.

Natwest previously estimated that customers could pocket an average of £83 a year in cashback – so most people will be worse off.

Helen Saxon, banking editor, said: “This is yet another example of a long line of banks making it less attractive for customers to stick with accounts that have served them well in the past.

“It’s likely that a lot of people moved to the standard Reward account specifically for the bills cashback and this will be a kick in the teeth for those people. But the good news is many will be able to earn more than £36 a year by switching account.”

Other Reward accounts

Natwest and RBS customers with a Premier Reward and Premier Reward Black account are also affected by the changes: cashback on bills will be scrapped.

From 1 February these customers will get £1 a month for logging into their mobile app, and £9 for having two direct debits of at least £4.50 each.

These accounts come with monthly fees of £2 and £31 respectively – and  you need to earn at least £100,000 a year to be eligible to open an account.

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