A service which enables current account holders to ditch and switch to a new provider quickly and smoothly is celebrating its 10th birthday.
More than 9.6m switches have been counted since the Current Account Switch Service (Cass) launched on September 16, 2013.
The free-to-use service can be used by people, small businesses and small charities to take the hassle out of switching and guarantee a safety net if anything goes wrong.
There have recently been some signs of a jump in people ditching and switching.
According to Cass, the most popular date it has seen so far for switching was November 8, 2022, when 13,566 switches were counted.
In the rising interest rate environment, some switchers may be attracted by decent rates on savings accounts linked to the current account.
Some current account providers have also been offering as much as £200 to switch in recent months, while some accounts also offer cashback for certain spending.
John Dentry, product owner, Pay.UK, the owner and operator of Cass, told the PA news agency the number of providers involved in the scheme has increased over the past decade.
It covers 99 per cent of UK current accounts across 50 banks and building societies.
He said: “There are a variety of offerings that are out there. Not just with the participating brands themselves, but the products that they offer as well.”
Asked about the growing appetite for ditching and switching, Dentry said: “There’s definitely a variety of reasons, one of the key ones that we see is the cash incentives in the market.
“We’ve seen not only an increase in the cash amount… but alongside that we’ve seen more organisations offer cash incentives as well.”
As well as rising interest rates, he also highlighted the value of good customer service for current account holders, whether provided digitally, on the phone or face-to-face in a branch.
Users should allow seven working days for a switch to take place. People can get started by asking their new bank or building society to move their old account using Cass.
The process will be handled by the bank or building society the customer is switching to, and they will let the individual know when the switch has started and completed.
Payments will automatically be moved to the new account and any payments sent to the old account by mistake will be redirected to the new one.
The new account should be ready to use and the old account should be closed on the agreed switch date.
Under the current account switch guarantee, the new bank or building society should refund any interest and charges incurred as a result of a delayed or incorrect switch.
Joint account holders and people with overdrafts can use the service.
For joint accounts, permission of both account holders will be needed and overdraft users will need to agree to any overdraft facilities required with the new bank or building society.
People may also want to check their eligibility for certain accounts. Some current accounts require a certain number of regular payments, or a minimum amount paid in each month.
Peter Tyler, director of personal banking at banking and finance industry trade association UK Finance, said: “The UK current account market is highly competitive and banks and building societies have a range of accounts available for customers to choose from.
“Cass has made it a lot easier for customers to switch current accounts securely and with confidence.”
Press Association – Vicky Shaw