Dubai: A bank in the UAE has launched a new savings account that calculates interest rates based on customers’ physical activity—the more steps they make daily, the more money they earn.
Promoting the mantra of “health is wealth”, Emirates NBD’s Fitness Account is a mobile-based financial scheme that allows savers to earn up to 2 per cent annual interest on their deposits.
People who sign up will first earn a base rate of 0.2 per annum. The figure then climbs as soon as the saver increases the physical activity, with 1 per cent to be rewarded to those clocking 5,000 steps and 2 per cent in exchange for 12,000 steps.
Savers need to wear an Apple watch or any other compatible gadget to keep track of their performance – while doing a morning jog, walking from the metro station to the office or playing tennis on weekends.
“[This programme] heralds a new phase in digital banking as it effectively combines customers’ health and lifestyle goals with their banking needs. We are offering customers a holistic value proposition,” said Suvo Sarkar, senior executive vice president and group head of retail banking and wealth management at Emirates NBD.
In addition to the interest they earn, customers can also avail themselves of a free insurance cover of Dh100,000 through MetLife. The bank promises to grant free vouchers that can be redeemed at fitness and sports brands.
How the interest is calculated
Interest on the account balance is calculated daily based on the number of steps logged, and those who fail to keep up the momentum won’t be disqualified. If a customer walks 12,500 steps on day one, for example, and slows down to 5,000 steps on the second day, the applicable interest will be 2 per cent for the first day and 0.50 for the succeeding day.
“There is no disqualification [if the customer is unable to maintain the same level of physical activity]. So, if a customer slows down on a particular day or for an entire week, the applicable interest rate will be 0.25 per cent for that day or week,” the bank said in a statement sent to Gulf News.
How to join
Customers who have an account with the bank need to download and set up the Emirates NBD Fitness app. They also need to open the Fitness account on the Emirates NBD mobile banking app. For new customers, setting up a current or savings account is required before they can enroll in the Fitness savings scheme.
The bank clarified that no membership or annual fees are required.