Switch to First Direct, then Monzo in 6 months to get £225

I’ve a plan…

If you’re with any bank other than First Direct, it’s possible to make £225.

My plan to switch my current Nationwide account to First Direct, getting the £125 reward. After 6 months, First Direct say if you’re not happy, they’ll give you another £100 when you leave them as a “parting gift”.

Well, I think if I did this today, in 6 months time Monzo will be pretty well up and running with their current account, thus the perfect excuse to switch over to them fully, instead of just using them for daily expenses. Any flaws in this plan? Do we think Monzo will offer the current account switching service by then?

Link to the offer by First Direct:


Edit: it seems to get the £125 (instead of £100) offer you have to go through Money Saving Expert’s link:


Edit 2: I should’ve mentioned, you have to be paying in £1000 a month to qualify for this offer. So that’s pretty important for anyone considering it.

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First Direct is very, very good!

**£100 to say hello

If you open a 1st Account, switch your everyday banking to us using the Current Account Switch Service and pay in at least £1,000 within three months of opening the account, we’ll top it up with £100 - it’s the least we can do to welcome you on board…

This offer is limited to one payment per customer or joint account, and you’ll get the money within 28 days of all criteria being met.

Sorry, we can only offer this to people who haven’t previously held an account with us, and we reserve the right to refuse your application and extend or withdraw this offer at any time. Credit is subject to status.

***£100 to say goodbye

We’re not just sure you’ll love our service more than anyone else’s - we’re banking on it. If you don’t like the way we do things after six months, we’ll not only help you move banks - we’ll give you £100 as a leaving present.

To qualify, you must have paid at least £1,000 a month into your account for six months and not have banked with us before, as well as switched to us initially using the Current Account Switch Service. You need to contact us to let us know you’re unhappy within 12 months of opening your account, and you’ll get the money within 28 days of the criteria being met. If you do decide to leave, all other products you hold with first direct will also need to be closed.

I don’t know about that, I was with them for many years in fact it was my first “grown up” current account.

They are fine when I was in credit with them but they had a way of being incredibly condescending when I was in debit with them.

For overall customer service yes I have to admit they are very very good.

The bank was competitive with other banks once upon a time but the rates offered for savings and ISAs got gradually worse and worse. So much so I had no reason to stick with them. So I left and joined a bank which does the same kind of thing but makes me smile. ;-p

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I can’t comment on that. I asked them to remove the overdraft facility and I’ve always run my account with a credit balance.

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To me, this seems far more exploitative than those getting a Monzo card purely for travel use.

Note: I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with this. This is just how rational consumers behave - people depositing the minimum into Santander 123 accounts for the cashback is another example. People will try to maximise the value they get from banks, so expecting them to do any differently when Monzo is the most cost effective option for travel is just asking for disappointment.

Also, the irony of this offer requiring a link from MSE is just too delicious :wink:


I’ve actually thought about doing this myself, how does the FD app compare to Santander? (Android)

I’ve heard good things about FD customer service but haven’t got any complaints at the moment so may be best just to wait till Monzo CA android app gets up to parity with iOS

Funny you should mention this! This was my plan 6 months ago. On Saturday I’ll be contacting them to Switch my account from them! :+1::ok_hand:


MSE encourages people to think about businesses in an adversarial way. Such is the sensationalised gutter press approach of MSE in appealing to as many as possible.

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I was not expecting you too, as that was obviously personal only to me.

The above part was added just to add credence to the fact that I don’t think in some aspects that they are the be all and end all of brilliant customer service.

However that was then (Pre 2006) and this is now, so things could of changed. :slight_smile:

I appreciate this. They don’t have 100% satisfaction rates, so you’re absolutely right. :+1:

In comparison to the rest of the industry, however, they consistently score the highest customer satisfaction rating of any Bank.


Oh of course they are streets ahead of the high street banks but that and the fact that they can be reached 24/7 comes with a price. The price is the rates you will be offered for practically everything that they offer will not be market leading in any way shape or form and actually will be on the poor end of the scale. :slight_smile:

Yep, have to agree with you on that. They were charging 5.9% for a loan they gave when I bought a car. I overpaid every month and was paying down the loan, I asked for the 3.9% rate they were advertising to new customers. They refused to reduce the rate.

Therefore moved the loan to Zopa at a rate of just 3.0%.
(If anyone needing a loan to refinancing a loan, you can use my referral link. Anyone who does so will get £50 as will I)

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I would say this bribe was not worth the hassle for me a couple of years ago.

I did the first half (switching accounts) and the process was not as simple as I would have hoped. You need to spend at least half an hour listening to terms and conditions to someone over the phone and saying ‘yes’ ‘ok’ ‘uh huh’, then do a current account switch to move your day to day stuff to them.

I found their app and online banking almost unusable due to excessive security questions and security keys etc, the security key wouldn’t generate on my phone and I couldn’t be bothered to have an hour phone convo about it so I just never used the app, only desktop with limited clunky features. I kept the account open for a year or two and never closed out with the exit deal - not because I loved them but because of the handy £250 fee free overdraft which I was obviously permanently in and because I didn’t want to call their lovely people up to say “close my account I want my payout”. In the end they shut my account down less than 2 months after being made redundant for failing to meet the terms (paying in x amount of salary a month). It was quite a bitter ending, especially as I already had a new job when they decided I no longer deserve an account for not having an income for a month, and they did not reply on twitter when I raised my situation with them, so it was not a good experience for me.

I think with all current account switches you really need to be ‘that’ person who Tom talks about, who always has their finances mapped out perfectly and sets an alert for when to cancel and get the payout. I think I was too ‘can’t be arsed-ish’ to benefit from this, like 95% of people.


Just do keep in mind, that opening and closing current accounts in short succession can sometimes have a negative effect on your credit rating. So, you may not wish to do that, if you need to take out a loan/mortgage soon.


I actually opened a second account and switched it to First Direct to get the £125. I don’t want to be with them, for ethical reasons, but I’m happy to fleece them for £125.

I’m not going to stay 6 months for the extra £100 though as I don’t want to use them or have money with them.

Considering they were the first telephone bank and were ahead of their time - I was shocked at how crap their app and especially their website were. Their online banking is down there with The Co-op Bank.

Also, it kept adding, ‘London’, to a load of random transactions for no reason. These transactions in other banks had the correct locations.

I was going to switch to Halifax (then close it) for their cash introductory offer - but I can’t really be bothered with the hassle.

My credit record has taken a bit of a battering with all the switching I’ve done. It’s going to take 6 months or so to recover.

How quick do First Direct pay the switching incentive bonus? I just got in before they swapped for gifts instead of cash :sunglasses:

From memory, it took around 3 weeks. Maybe more. They’re not the quickest.

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@Chubhench, you’re so moneysupermarket! :joy: