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Today, the Current Account Switch Service published findings that show a 93% satisfaction rate among surveyed customers who've switched their current account in the last three years. Overall, 4.45 million successful switches have taken place since the service launched in 2013, with Bacs data showing a recent increase.
"It's encouraging to see that more current account switches are being performed," commented Rachel Springall, finance expert at moneyfacts.co.uk. "In fact, in the last quarter of 2017 we saw around a third of switches for the entire year, which is quite remarkable, but it could be linked to the banks throwing around lucrative incentives or benefits to new switching customers."
The service allows people to switch their current account with ease, as payments are automatically redirected and they aim to have everything switched over within seven days. Given a 99.3% seven-day switching success rate and over 83 million payments having been redirected, it's no wonder customers are so satisfied.
However, compared to the more than 65 million people currently living in the UK, 4.45 million switches are really not that many. To address this, the switch service ran a public awareness campaign in the latter half of 2017. As a result, awareness of the service hit a high of 84% in October.
Possibly because of this, combined with broader market activity, November saw the most monthly switches since March 2016, at 110,774. This also marked the fourth highest number of switches completed in a month since the service launched, according to Bacs.
With satisfaction so high, and awareness at 84%, why aren't more people switching? The service is free to use and fast, and almost all banks take part in it. It could simply be that people are happy with their current bank account, and feel no need to switch. However, it could very well be that people don't know what they're missing out on.
"For many years, consumers stuck with their bank account because they assumed that switching would be both a hassle and potentially a cost," said Rachel. While the increased awareness has certainly helped, it's important that customers realise the benefits that switching could bring.
"Current account providers have been heavily competing for new business over the last five years and cash incentives have clearly been a frontline assault. While this sounds like a good thing, consumers may realise an upfront cash perk does not mean that the account overall is the best deal for them," Rachel theorised.
Just because you aren't taken in by cash switching incentives, however, doesn't mean there isn't a better deal out there for you. Features such as overdraft rates, monthly cashback and (a lack of) account fees should all be considered, both when evaluating your current deal and when planning a switch.
Have a look at our bank account charts to see if there's a provider who can tempt you away from your current account.
Read our guide on how to switch bank accounts.
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