Tag Archives: singapore

Best Credit Card Cash Rebates or Miles in Singapore

A new post on this topic is available.

Credit Cards
AFP image

Updated on 6 Dec 2013.

I like to maximize the return of all my spending, be it in the form of discounts, rebates, reward points, or air miles. Hence, unless I’m entitled to a good discount, I normally avoid paying with cash in favor of credit card.

If you know where to look, certain credit cards will give you substantial benefits based on their promotions, for example cash bonus, free gifts, 5% (or more) cash rebates, 10X (ten times) reward points, loads of air miles, etc. Some even provide you with less intangible benefits like airport lounge access or concierge service. If you never get any of this benefit, you’re missing it big time.

So, if you are like me and you want to get some tips on this, read on. This blog post is by no means comprehensive, I’m just sharing my experience with Singapore-issued credit cards.

1. Best credit card for online shopping

The followings are the card that you should use when shopping online, for example Amazon, Apple Store, eBay, Paypal, SingTel/StarHub/M1 bill payments, etc. Some cards may have special exclusions, so pay attention to the T&C.

Card Benefits
DBS Woman’s World Card MasterCard
  • 10X DBS Points for online spending.
    • Every $5 = 10 DBS Points.
    • The additional 9X DBS Points are only applicable for the first $2,000 online spend every calendar month.
  • Men can also apply :)
OCBC FRANK credit card
  • 6% cash rebate for online spend between $500 and $1000 per month.
  • Unlimited 0.5% cash rebate otherwise.
UOB Preferred Platinum Visa Card
  • 10X reward points for online spending.
    • Excludes all airline, travel, government, utilities, telecommunications, brokerage/securities, insurance, education/tuition, online money transfers and online gambling websites.
  • 10X reward points for Visa payWave transactions.


2. Best credit card for groceries shopping

If you often shop for groceries on supermarkets, you can use the following credit cards:

Card Benefits
Maybank Family & Friends Platinum MasterCard
  • 5% cash rebate at Cold Storage, NTUC Fairprice,  Fairprice Finest, Fairprice X-tra.
  • 5% cash rebate at POPULAR bookstores, Toys “R” Us, KFC Delivery, McDonald’s Delivery, Pizza Hut Delivery, Guardian, Unity NTUC Healthcare, Watsons, Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, Singapore Zoo.
POSB Everyday Card
  • 5% cash rebate at Sheng Shiong.
  • 3% cash rebate at Watsons.
  • Multifunction as MasterCard PayPass, EZ-Link card, DBS/POSB ATM card, and NETS card.
HSBC Visa Platinum Credit Card
  • 5% cash rebate at Cold Storage, Jasons, Market Place, Giant, and Guardian.


3. Best credit card for air miles accrual

If you are accumulating points or air miles for your upcoming honeymoon trip to Europe, check the following cards out:

Card Benefits
UOB PRVI Miles Platinum American Express Card
  • 2.5 miles for every $1 spent overseas.
  • 1.6 miles for every $1 spent locally.
  • Complimentary one-way limousine transfer to the airport.
Citibank PremierMiles American Express Card
  • 2.5 miles for every S$1 spent on Singapore Airlines, SilkAir, KrisShop or Tradewinds Tours & Travel
  • 2 miles for every $1 spent overseas.
  • 1.4 miles for every $1 spent locally.
  • 15000 miles for paying $267.50 annual fee.
  • Miles never expire.
Citibank PremierMiles Visa Card
  • 2 miles for every $1 spent overseas.
  • 1.2 miles for every $1 spent locally.
  • 10000 miles for paying $192.60 annual fee.
  • Miles never expire.

Also note that your reward points earned by other credit cards can also be converted to air miles. So if you can, try to use the 10X reward cards before using the miles cards.


4. Best general-purpose cash rebate (cash back) credit cards

The following credit cards are useful if your spending does not fall in any of the above categories.

Card Benefits
UOB One Card
  • Up to 3.33% of cash rebate on everything.
    Note that the rebates are tiered and can be troublesome to hit the maximum rebates. Unless you have the necessary patience and details, I suggest you avoid this card.
  • Additional 2% cash rebate on all overseas transactions.
Standard Chartered MANHATTAN MasterCard
  • 3% cash rebate on all spendings when the monthly total spending is $3000 or above.
  • 1% cash rebate on all spendings when the monthly total spending is between $1000 and $2999.
  • 0.5% cash rebate on all spendings when the monthly total spending is less than $1000.
  • Cash rebate is capped at $200 per quarter.
CIMB Visa Infinite Card
  • 1% cash rebate on all local spendings.
  • 2% cash rebate on overseas and travel related spendings (hotels, airlines, and travel agencies).
    Eligible with a minimum monthly spend of $2000.

There are still many cards that I haven’t covered, mainly because I haven’t used them. Others because the use case is very specific, like for EZ-Link top up, for movie purchase, etc. I may write about it on other opportunities. In the mean time, if you have some useful tips, feel free to share them in the comment section below.

My New Favorite Barber: QB House

QB House — courtesy of feathers (http://www.flickr.com/photos/feathers/)I never enjoy having haircut. The main reason is that I hate waiting. Waiting to be served and waiting while being served. Except, perhaps, if you go to a not so popular barber/salon, at least you won’t find a long queue. For that reason, I usually went for a haircut maybe only once in three months or so.

Actually, it’s been more than three months since I cut my hair, hence yesterday, I asked a colleague of mine whether he knew a good, cheap, and fast barber/salon. Spontaneously he told me that I should go to QB House, and I could find it in almost every big mall in Singapore. He said they charged only 10 SGD for 10 minutes haircut. What?? Okay 10 SGD is reasonable, actually there are cheaper ones here, but 10 minutes?

On the way to my client’s office today, I saw an advertisement board saying a QB House outlet was there at Bugis Junction Mall, #B1-20. That’s great, since I worked at the very next door. So just now I decided to go there for a quick haircut. I found it beside the food court.

When I came, a man greeted me and spoke to me in Chinese language — which I didn’t quite understand despite the fact that I have a Chinese bloodline. He quickly got it and told me — in English — to insert a piece of S$ 10 to a ticket machine. Then I was asked to bring the ticket to a female hairdresser who then quickly prepared everything.

She politely asked about the style I wanted before starting to cut my hair. She took her tools from a microwave-like container, to keep things sterile they said. She worked really fast, yet carefully and paid attentions to details too. She also used some kind of vacuum cleaner to suck the scattered hair on my head. They used only new combs for customers.

I didn’t really count, but judging that I only managed to hear two pop songs played there, and the time I needed to go there and back to my office was not more than 15 minutes, I am sure they really kept their 10 minutes promise. Did I mention they gave the new combs to the customers for free? Although this won’t do any good for me since I never comb my hair, but their swiftness and quality of service is pretty impressing. Now I know where to go next time when I need another haircut.