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Halifax Unveils 12 Month Fee Free Overdraft for Switchers

- New customers switching to any of Halifax's innovative current accounts will not pay any fees on planned overdrafts for 12 months

LEEDS, YORKSHIRE -- (Marketwire) -- 01/04/13 -- In another challenge to the high street, Halifax is kicking off the New Year with another major switching initiative for people who move their current account to the bank.

From 2 January 2013 until 3 March 2013, as well as receiving GBP 100 on the same day they open the account and commence the switching process(i), new customers to Halifax will not pay any fees on planned overdrafts for an entire year, even if they have an existing overdraft.

With the Bank of England reporting the average overdraft rate across the market is now 19.65%, this means customers switching to Halifax with a planned overdraft of GBP 700 could save GBP 137.55 in overdraft charges alone. Taking the additional, monthly overdraft usage charges levied by many high street banks into account too, and customers switching to Halifax could save significantly more than this(ii).

Anthony Warrington, director of Halifax current accounts, says: "We want to make our customers better off, and this initiative demonstrates that by switching to a Halifax current account you can not only earn GBP 100 but you can save overdraft fees and charges too.

"Other switching offers generally only work for people who are in credit. However, this one will also be attractive for those moving an existing overdraft, as they will still get GBP 100, but won't have to pay any overdraft fees for a year.

"Halifax's current accounts provide genuine long-term value, and over the last year we have seen unprecedented demand for our current accounts with 300,000 customers moving over from other banks."

Wide-ranging benefits

Those switching to a new Halifax current account have access to one of the most innovative product ranges available on the High Street, including Reward Current Account and Ultimate Reward Current Account.

New Halifax Current Account customers can now benefit from the following features:

--  12 months interest free planned overdraft 
--  GBP 100 credited to the new account on the day that they start the
    switching process 
--  All account details provided at opening, with the ability to start
    banking online immediately 
--  A dedicated switching team to provide support throughout the process 
--  A service to transfer all direct debits and standing orders 
--  A service to transfer credits, including salary or pension credits 

To use the switching service, customers need to move at least two Direct Debits, but they do not need to hold any other products with the bank in order to benefit. Halifax also guarantees it will help customers to move to another bank if they are not satisfied with the service that they receive.

Notes to editors:

After the 12 month fee free period rather than separate overdraft fees and usage charges, Halifax customers using their overdraft will just pay a single, straightforward daily overdraft fee.

Planned overdraft                                        Unplanned overdraft
Amount of                                           Amount of               
overdraft                       Daily fee           overdraft      Daily fee
                                                 All balances          GBP 5
Up to and including GBP                                                     
 1,999.99                           GBP 1                                   
GBP 2,000 to GBP 2,999.99           GBP 2                                   
GBP 3,000 and above                 GBP 3                                   

(i) GBP 100 available on the same day that they open the account and commence the switching process for new customers who visit a branch to switch to the bank. Digital and telephony customers will benefit from GBP 100 once the switching process has started.

(ii) Overdrafts are subject to status and affordability. Customers will be eligible to pay fees if they exceed their agreed limit. Market averages of GBP 98.25 - GBP 137.55 based on Bank of England data: http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/statistics/Documents/bankstats/2012/Oct12/TabG1.3.xls

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