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Barclays offering £50 if you get their credit card - yet more Bad Banking?

(6 Posts)
SSWise Tue 27-Sep-11 10:34:27

I'm looking for a new credit card at the moment and saw Barclays are offering a £50 Amazon Voucher.

Now, I might be missing the point, but haven't we just been through (or are still going through) a massive banking crisis caused by greedy weasel bankers getting us to take more credit than we need or can afford?

It is right that Barclays are dangling a £50.00 incentive to skint families to get them to take on more debt than they need?

Personally I think it's absolutely disgusting!

I've also been looking around to see if anyone else has the same objections as me. So I checked the money-supermarket site - good and bad news there.
MoneySupermarket aren't offering it (which is very responsible of them) but when I looked a little deeper it looks like they are breaking their own Customer Commitment that "The price you see is the price you pay. You don't need to go direct and you won't get a better deal doing so."

The government really needs to act. The banks clearly have no interest in behaving responsibly and those who I thought were protecting us from them are breaking their own promises!

CogitoErgoSometimes Tue 27-Sep-11 11:25:43

YABU It's marketing.... If if you're looking to switch credit card, and are intending to pay it off each month, a £50 incentive could help you chose Card A over Card B. Your hypothetical 'skint family' with a bad credit rating would probably be turned down for a credit card anyway. And even if they got the card, no-one's twisting their arm up their backs forcing them to spend, spend, spend.

I think you are missing the point and getting very angry without justification

SSWise Tue 27-Sep-11 12:25:16

You're probably right about me getting too worked up. We do all have a duty to live within our means, but I still think the banks have a duty to show a level of sensitivity for the current economic climate.

In terms of "Skint families" (off which I think I'm one); they don't necessarily have to have a bad credit rating (in fact they could be skint, because they make on their payments in full ad on time). Unfortunately I get the sense that this makes us an even more attractive customer for the banks who will just try to throw more credit at us and use bigger and bigger carrots as bait (£50 is a lot of money)!
_ _ _ _

After writing the above I also went to see what Martin Lewis was advising and he seem to think the product is okay, but after a bit of poking around it looks like he is getting paid directly from Barclaycard (I clicked on the Barclaycard link on his site and in the address bar it has "*MSE*0330012".)

So how impartial he is I don't know!
_ _ _ _

I still think the government should stop these companies using these tactics. If you got an Amazon voucher with a packet of cigarettes we'd all be up in arms regardless of whether someone actually smoked them. I think credit (as we have seen) is equally addictive and the government should protect the weakest from themselves (and more importantly the banks!)

CogitoErgoSometimes Tue 27-Sep-11 13:07:25

How is any government supposed to enforce individual financial responsibility? The banks aren't standing on people's doorsteps waggling £50 notes and twisting arms up backs. You have to apply, be accepted then act like a grown-up.

I don't personally look for my bank to be 'sensitive'. I want them to be practical and hard-nosed & simply not to lend money to people who can't afford to pay it back. In this current economic climate, if someone uses a credit card and pays it all back in full on time why shouldn't they get £50 for switching? There are cards offering loyalty points for various retailers, cashback & fringe-benefits like travel insurance. Why should the rest of us miss out on a bit of a deal just because someone else can't use a fairly ordinary, everyday financial product responsibly?

SSWise Tue 27-Sep-11 14:34:35

A very simple hard nosed approach. I like it. But aren't the banks a big part of the reason people are skint. Leaning too much to the wrong people, making very risky investments etc. I admire your cut-throat attitude, but it seems to me to be very black and white given the complexity of the subject matter.

If Mrs Joe Average does apply for a card because of a free £50 (during these hard times) and doesn't get accepted, that will show on her credit score - this will mean she has even less of a chance of getting credit on reasonable terms in the future.

I'm not saying get rid of credit card rewards etc. I'm saying there should be some sensitivity from those who had a great deal to do with getting us into this mess to those trapped by the aftershocks of their actions. Not too much too ask is it? They'll still make a fortune and get great big bonuses!

CogitoErgoSometimes Tue 27-Sep-11 15:07:37

Lending to people who couldn't afford to pay it back was bad practice and irresponsible. Taking out £££s of credit without the income to finance the payments was also irresponsible. Banks used to be very stringent about to whom they lent money and how much and they've largely gone back to that now. Credit is much more difficult to get hold of, deposits on homes have to be much higher, etc. because they've had their fingers burned and lost a lot of money. Salaries may still be pretty generous for CEOs but bank shares are practically worthless.

If 'Mrs Joe Average' wants a credit card it's a free country. If she is attracted by a special offer & doesn't get accepted because she's a bad risk, then the system as far as I am concerned is working perfectly.

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