Tag Archives: cashback

Standard Chartered wants to give you $188 for free

Thanks to Ms Solitaire who tipped me off about this on 2nd August, and apologies that I could only cover it 2 weeks later. 

Although this does not fall within the realm of credit card deals (ok well it sort of does), it’s free money and I’m not above taking it.

Standard Chartered is running a promotion for their Bonus$aver account. From now till the end of August, if you

(1) Open a Bonus$aver current/chequing account with S$50,000 in fresh funds
(2) Apply for a Bonus$aver World Mastercard
(3) Keep said S$50,000 in funds in the Bonus$aver account until the end of the calendar month after the month you opened your Bonus$aver Account

You get S$188 cashback in your Bonus$aver World Mastercard (there’s also an option to deposit S$10,000 in fresh funds to get S$88 cashback).

Bonus$aver must be SCB’s answer to the OCBC 360 account. They’ve got a tiered earning system where you can earn up to 3.88% p.a interest on your first S$100,000 of deposits with them, contingent on you carrying out a certain set of activities. This is not my area of specialty and I’m not familiar with what else is on the market so I’d encourage you to do your own research, but 3.88% sounds pretty sweet.

Here’s the breakdown of the bonus interest

  • Earn up to 1.78% p.a. for spending at least S$2,000 in eligible transactions on your Bonus$aver Credit or Debit Card, or earn up to 0.78% p.a. for spending at least S$500 in eligible transactions on your Bonus$aver Credit or Debit Card and/or
  • Earn 1% p.a. for crediting your salary of at least S$3,000 through your employer via giro and/or
  • Earn 0.75% p.a. for 12 months when you purchase a new eligible unit trust investment or regular premium insurance product from SCB and/or
  • Earn 0.25% p.a. for paying any 3 unique bills online or through GIRO

Unfortunately my salary does not credit as SAL (it’s MEPS for some reason) and I don’t intend to put any spending on the Bonus$aver card, so there goes 2.88% interest already. But I’m still going to jump on this for the S$188 (full T&C here, I can’t find anything that makes me unduly nervous)

Where the credit card is concerned, the only benefit I am aware of for the Bonus$aver World Mastercard is that it’s a World Mastercard and means you’re eligible for the SPG stay 1 night to Gold promotion.

I’m going to assume it’s this rather fetching 2-in-1 card and token, which is a very nifty idea I admit, even though it doesn’t earn you any points at all. Note that the credit card is free for the first 2 years, after which an annual fee of S$214 (!) applies. Well, you know what to do when that day comes…

Merits of the card aside, S$188 is S$188, and gift horse look mouth don’t.

Branch Gifts

If you sign up at a branch instead of online, you may win one of the following gifts. However, this is limited to the first 500 customers who sign up and I imagine they would all have been redeemed already. Doesn’t hurt to try your luck though.

S/N Gift Type Number of Gifts
1 Canon EOS 1200D Kit (EFS18-55 IS II) 20
2 CP910 Selphy Photo Printer 60
3 Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 270
4 American Tourister Paralite SP66 10
5 Customised Blended Tea (3 types of flavours) 40
6 S$28 NETS Flashpay 20
7 $20 NTUC Voucher 80

I’m not sure why they’re incentivizing you to sign up at the branches instead of online given the lower processing costs of an online application; I can only surmise this to be an opportunity to sell you more stuff in person.

TL;DR, this is valid till 31 August, and I’m going down during lunchtime to apply.

EDIT: Adam on the comments pointed out 2 other things worth taking note. If you close the account within 6 months, you pay S$30, and if your daily average balance falls below S$3,000, you pay S$5 fall below fee.

photo credit: businesstimes

$15 Amazon Card for AMEX holders via TopCashBack

I stumbled upon this promotion on the UOB PRVI Miles website while doing some spring cleaning for The Milelion (I realise there’s a ton of outdated info in the dropdown menus on top and I promise that will be rectified real soon)

Now, it says UOB PRVI Miles AMEX card, but this is open to any AMEX cardholder, as you’ll see on the TopCashBack site.

The US$15 Amazon.com gift card is triggered when you make any one transaction with your AMEX card through TopCashBack. You can register using this link. Registration and transaction must be done by 30 Sept 16.

Remember that you can cashout your cashback using the following methods. The best option for those of us in Singapore is probably Paypal.

There is no fee to cashout from TopCashBack to Paypal, but Paypal may charge you a withdrawal fee if you want to transfer the money to your bank account in Singapore

If you register for TopCashBack using this method you won’t be able to take advantage of my member-get-member promotion which gives you US$15 bonus when you sign up and make your first transaction. So from that point of view it might actually be better to use my link because you’ll then have the option of cashing out the US$15 via Paypal, instead of having a US$15 Amazon gift card that you can’t cashout except on Amazon. The choice is yours, obviously, and you should do whatever works with you.

You can read the primer on cashback sites here, but just to summarise- almost everything you think about can earn cashback online. This includes airlines, OTAs and hotels, Amazon (selected categories only), newegg, Target, Walmart, Lazada, etc etc etc. Seriously the list is almost endless.

Another good cashback site with a stronger Singapore focus is Shopback.

T&C of the promotion

American Express Cardmembers who register an account at URL https://www.topcashback.com/amexasia/ (“TopCashback”) from 1 April 2016 to 30 September 2016 (2359 +8 GMT) (the “Promotion Period”) for the first time, with a valid email address and using a credit or charge card issued by American Express International Inc. (“American Express”), its affiliates or its independent licensees in French Territories, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Macau, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam (“Eligible Cards”) will be eligible to receive a welcome bonus of US$15 (“Welcome Bonus”), upon completion of any applicable transaction at any of TopCashback’s merchants. To understand TopCashback’s criteria of an applicable transaction, please visithttps://www.topcashback.com/light-box/amexasiaterms


UOB Yolo- life is too short for cashback cards


The UOB YOLO Card is what happens when you let marketing groupthink run amok. “Hey guys, let’s create a new offering for the millennial group. And let’s call it yolo because millennials.”

As someone who falls into the “millennial” category, I am constantly bemused as to what marketers think about my behavior. Apparently, I don’t like desks, I’m self-absorbed and I’m the sort of person who would lie about a friend’s funeral just so I can go build a treehouse (and then blog and tweet about it so everyone in the office knows I lied).  Every time I read what people have to say about my generation, I cringe and die a little inside.

But it is a slow news week (unless you’re keeping up with the Anbang/Marriott will they won’t they courtship of Starwood) so what the heck, let’s look at this new card.

Key Features


The UOB YOLO card features

  • 8% cash rebate on weekend dining and entertainment (in SG and outside)
  • 3% cash rebate on weekday dining and entertainment (spending at bars, taverns, lounges, nightclubs, transactions made at all cinemas in Singapore as well as Ticketing Servicing Providers), online fashion, online travel, payments via UOB MIGHTY
  • 0.3% cash rebate on all other spend
  • 1 for 1 movie tickets at Cathay Cineplexes

And the fine print

  • 8% and 3% cash rebate subject to min $600 spend per month, otherwise 0.3% cash rebate on all spending
  • 8% is a promotional rate, until 1 Oct 16 after which it drops to 6%
  • Cashback capped at $60 per month (meaning that $750 of weekend dining and entertainment will max it out)
  • Online travel limited to Agoda, AirAsia, Airbnb, Cathay Pacific, Expedia, Hotels.com, Jetstar, Scoot, Singapore Air, Tiger, UOB Travel
  • The 1 for 1 movie tickets are only valid on Sat and Sun, only at The Cathay, limited to 100 per day
  • Various other 1 for 1 dining promotions

My stance on cashback cards has been well documented, so it won’t surprise you to know that I do not approve of this card.  There is some limited use if you’re using it solely for dining (but you could earn miles! Valuable, valuable miles!), but I suppose on some level I am ideologically opposed to getting a card which suggests that life is too short for anything else than cash rebates. Perhaps they believe that cash rebates are something that instant gratification seeking millennials crave more than miles, the accumulation of which is a bit of a long game. I don’t know about you, but I’d rather build miles and enjoy nice things like this and this, than have a little more cashback each month.

I also found it very funny that this is being touted as an innovation-


Apparently not being able to read your card digits quickly was such a big problem the resolution of such deserved a mention in the press release.

The card also features Southeast Asia’s first ‘quick read’ card face. Instead of the 16-digit card number laid out in a horizontal line, the card numbers are laid out in a 4-by-4 stack on the top right hand corner of the card, making it easier for customers to read when conducting online transactions.

This is a bit like the Kuvee wine bottle in that it offers to solve a problem you didn’t know you had.

The income requirement is $30,000 for Singaporeans ($40,000 for foreigners) and interestingly enough it has been tiered as a Visa Signature card. I remember when the Visa Signature card was launched in Singapore a long time back it was meant for the $50,000 income bracket and above, but as with all things that’s migrated downwards as time passed. Visa Signature gives you access to the Visa Luxury Hotels collection which is worth a look if you’re not into hotel loyalty programs.

Remember kids- yolo means life is too short for cash rebates.