Standard Chartered has been doing several “free money” promotions in recent memory to try and drive signups. Well, the promotion is back again. From 1 October to 31 December 2017 SCB is offering $138 of free money when you sign up for the following cards:
- Unlimited Cashback Credit Card;
- Platinum Visa/Mastercard® Credit Card;
- Spree Credit Card;
- NUS Alumni Platinum Credit Card;
- Prudential Platinum Credit Card;
- PruPrestige Visa Signature Credit Card;
These promotions are meant to drive new customer acquisition, so if you’re an existing SCB cardholder (or cancelled a card within the past 12 months), you’re not eligible (well technically you are, but you’ll just get $20).
Now, whether I’d actually use the card is another matter altogether. I’m going to tell you flat out that none of these cards can be used for miles (except the Platinum Visa/MC but it earns a terrible rate), so please don’t take their mention here as an endorsement. I’m merely letting you know that if you want $138 of free money you can sign up for one of these cards (earning The Milelion some free money at the same time, if you sign up for cards 1, 3 or 5).
You will need to activate your card within 30 days of receiving it and hold it for at least 6 months, although your $138 cashback will be credited within 30 days of activation. One more thing from the T&C: for you to enjoy the first year fee waiver on these cards, you need to charge a minimum of 3 retail transactions to the card within 60 days of approval.
My recommendation? Get the SCB Unlimited Cashback card, register for ABT, use it three times and don’t think about it again (unless you really want to continue using the card, which comes with 1.5% cashback without cap). Note that the SCB Unlimited Cashback card comes with EZ-link functionality, so if you want to use ABT you’ll need to switch your card’s payment mode to contactless payment at the GTMs located in any train station within 3 days of receiving your ABT confirmation email.
I’m no fan of cashback cards, but I’m not about to turn down $138 of free money. Please remember to take sensible precautions- don’t forget to pay your first month’s bill (after you do your 3 transactions) and don’t forget to cancel before the annual fee becomes due, if you don’t want to continue using the card.