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Trustmark’s new promotion not a winner

If you’re shopping for a new checking account, pick the one that has all the features you need at the lowest possible cost.

The chance to win a few days at a Florida resort shouldn’t figure into the decision.

Trustmark Vacation GiveawayBut that’s the hook Trustmark National Bank of Jackson, Miss. is using to attract new customers.

Apply for a new checking account before Sept. 25, 2009 and you’ll receive a lottery-like scratch-and-win card.

Five winners qualify for a five-night stay at the Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort on Florida’s Gulf coast between Pensacola and Panama City.

Up to four guests can enjoy a two-bedroom condo and a few perks, including a free breakfast or lunch, beach chairs and four rounds of golf.

Ten other winners will receive three-night stays for two in a standard hotel room, with a free breakfast or lunch.

The fine print says transportation isn’t provided, you’re responsible for taxes and gratuities, and you can’t go during some popular holidays like the Labor Day weekend.

The scratch cards are being given away at Trustmark Bank branches in Mississippi, Texas and Tennessee, but not Florida for some reason.

What about the nine different types of personal checking accounts Trustmark offers? They’re pretty typical of what you’ll find at most banks. None of them jumped out at us as a great deal.

Umbrella Checking, which Trustmark says is its most popular checking account, charges a rather steep $9.95 monthly fee ($7.95 for customers under 25 years old).

The Positively Free Checking account looks like a better deal to us. You get most of the same benefits, except free checks, without the monthly fees.

So if banking at Trustmark makes sense for you, by all means do it.

But don’t be swayed by the vacation offer.

In fact, here’s something else from the contest’s fine print. You don’t have to open a new checking account to get a scratch card.

You can request a game card by sending a 3-by-5 card with your name, address and phone number to:

Trustmark Bank Sandestin Giveaway
ATTN: Sales Management
P.O. Box 291
Jackson, MS 39205

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