Lloyds ponders card rebates: Barclaycard's strategy for new cardholders has been widely advertised on television

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The Independent Online
LLOYDS Bank is considering whether to offer cardholders a rebate on their debts if they switch from other flexible friends to its Access card.

The bank said it was considering the option along with a range of other customer benefits it may introduce this year.

Barclaycard joined a number of smaller issuers this January in offering rebates to credit cardholders who transferred their outstanding debts from other accounts.

Barclaycard's strategy, widely advertised on television, comes in the wake of its Ford Barclaycard launch last year. Both cards now offer to wipe 5 per cent off an outstanding debt, up to pounds 3,000, if balances are transferred.

In addition, the Ford Barclaycard offers discounts of up to pounds 1,800 over three years to people who use its card often enough.

Other banks with debt rebate schemes include the Halifax, which offers a credit of pounds 25 for those moving debts of pounds 300 or more on to its card. Bank of Scotland offers rebates of up to pounds 60 for pounds 1,500-plus transferred from other accounts.

The GM Card offers to offset 5 per cent of the debt as a discount on a new Vauxhall vehicle. However, Girobank, which used to offer a discount, no longer does so.

Ian Lindsey, executive director at Save & Prosper, another card issuer, said: 'Rebates are a nice marketing gimmick. But people should look at the cost of the card itself. Someone with pounds 3,000 outstanding on the Barclaycard would pay almost pounds 600 interest, at 21.9 per cent, in one year.

'With our Fleming Visa card, which has a rate of 13.9 per cent, the interest in one year would be pounds 372.65 - a saving of pounds 220.

'As for buying a car at a discount, there are dealers who buy them abroad for a similar discount to that offered by the car cards.'

(Photograph omitted)

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