Tag Archives: ocbc

OCBC limited time 6mpd on Titanium Rewards Card for CNY (Edit: Targeted)

EDIT: This appears to be a targeted promotion

OCBC recently relaunched its Titanium Rewards card, which awards 10X points (4mpd) on online and offline spend on clothes, shoes, bags, department stores, electronics, personal care and baby/children’s wear.

Although OCBC lacks a good general spending card, it may still be worthwhile getting the Titanium Rewards card assuming you intend to spend a good deal of money on the aforementioned categories (and can’t get a HSBC Advance for your online spending). One big advantage the Titanium Rewards card has over similar positioned cards like the DBS Woman’s World Card is that DBS points expire after 1 year whereas OCBC$ are valid for 2 years.

For the CNY period, OCBC is running a 15X point promotion on the Titanium Rewards card. 

This earns you the equivalent of 6mpd on

  • MCC 5311: Department Stores
  • MCC 5611: Men’s and Boys’ Clothing and Accessories Stores
  • MCC 5621: Women’s Ready to Wear Stores
  • MCC 5631: Women’s Accessory and Speciality Stores
  • MCC 5641: Children’s and Infants’ Wear Stores
  • MCC 5651: Family Clothing Stores
  • MCC 5661: Shoe Stores
  • MCC 5691: Men’s and Women’s Clothing Stores
  • MCC 5045: Computers, Peripherals, and Software
  • MCC 5732: Electronics Stores
  • MCC 5699: Miscellaneous Apparel and Accessory Shops

The promotion is valid on spend from Jan 24 to Feb 15 2017. You can read the T&C here.  There is a cap on the bonus earned, however- you will earn the additional 5X up to 10,000 OCBC$, which means you max out this bonus with $2,000 of spending (spending from the $2,001 dollar onwards gets 10X points, or 4mpd, up to a maximum of $12,000 per cardmember year)

Remember that your mobile payments with Samsung Pay, Apple Pay and Android Pay qualify for the 15X (and 10X regularly) bonus with OCBC.

What credit cards should you use for Black Friday shopping?

Black Friday is here again as Americans try to  ease the pain of too much turkey and the vagaries of the electoral college system by spending their way into a debt-fueled oblivion!

I’m not going to list any great deals here because I’m sure you’re all more than capable of sniffing them out yourselves (plus there are tons of websites dedicated just to ferreting out the best of the best offers).

Instead, I’m going to do a refresher on what options you have when deciding which credit card to put your Black Friday shopping on.

can you believe there is no online resource image of the OCBC Titanium Rewards card that doesn’t have it angled funny like this? Come on guys.

The following cards all give a bonus (4 miles per $1 to be precise) on online spending.

You might want to have a look at this crowdsourced Google Docs form to see whether the specific merchant you have in mind qualifies as “online” (because, unbelievably, sometimes even merchants you swear must be online like Taobao don’t end up qualifying as online because they manually process transactions on their backend), but safe to say that your usual Amazon, Zalora etc e-commerce sites will be a sure bet for 10X.

HSBC Advance Card

Image result for hsbc advance

Ah, my one stop card for all things online. If you don’t mind going through the (15 minutes really) somewhat hasslesome process of getting a card, the HSBC Advance will be your best friend (until possibly the 31st of December this year when the 10X promotion is due to expire- it’s been renewed in the past so watch this space).

You’ll get 10X points (4 miles per $1) on all your online spending. No caps, no exceptions (well, except for EZ link top ups, but that’s not a typical Black Friday purchase).

For me personally my goal is to max out everything I can from the HSBC Advance until the end of the year, then re-evaluate my strategy based on what HSBC decides to do with the 10X program.

Citibank Rewards Card

Image result for citibank rewards

Assuming you haven’t already busted your $12,000 annual bonus limit (applied per card, mind you, so if you have both the Mastercard and the Visa version then your bonus is capped on $24,000 of spending) on bill payments, then this is another potential option for you.

Citibank was previously running a promotion that offered an amazing 8 miles per dollar with Amazon. At the time, I said that if you didn’t have any item in mind or simply wanted to hold out for Black Friday, you could buy a giftcard to front load your miles. Hope someone listened to that!

EDIT: I was just reminded that Citibank has extended the Amazon promotion till year end. 8 miles per $1 is hard to beat so if your Black Friday plans include Amazon then I can’t recommend any other card than this

Another great point about the Citibank Rewards card is that your points are valid for 5 years, so you can accumulate a good-sized haul before transferring.

OCBC Titanium Rewards

Image result for ocbc titanium rewards

OCBC recently relaunched their Titanium card as the Titanium Rewards card, offering 10X on online and offline shopping.

Unfortunately since this card is the newest of the lot we don’t have a lot of data points on how OCBC is interpreting the above categories

What we do know from the T&C is that you will earn 10X at the following merchants

  • MCC 5611: Men’s and Boys’ Clothing and Accessories Stores
  • MCC 5621: Women’s Ready to Wear Stores
  • MCC 5631: Women’s Accessory and Speciality Stores
  • MCC 5641: Children’s and Infants’ Wear Stores
  • MCC 5651: Family Clothing Stores
  • MCC 5661: Shoe Stores
  • MCC 5691: Men’s and Women’s Clothing Stores
  • MCC 5732: Electronics Stores
  • MCC 5699: Miscellaneous Apparel and Accessory Shops
  • MCC 5311: Department Stores

The maximum bonus points you can earn in a year is capped on $12,000 of spending (48,000 miles) and OCBC points are valid for 2 years.

DBS Woman’s World Card

Image result for dbs woman's world card
I find it funny that the default card image for the DBS Woman’s card has a man’s name on it

Despite its $2,000 monthly cap on 10X, the DBS Woman’s World Card is still a solid choice if you’re not intending to bust the bank on Black Friday.

DBS has an ongoing promotion for sign ups for the Woman’s Card where you can get $160 in cashback if you spend a minimum of $500 on the card within the first month from approval date. The $160 applies if you’re completely new to DBS cards. If you already own a DBS card you get $100. Still not a bad deal, I think, and no time to hit that $500 minimum spending like Black Friday.

What I dislike about the Woman’s World Card is that DBS Points are only valid for 1 year.

UOB Preferred Platinum Visa

Image result for uob preferred platinum visa

I’ve been historically cold towards the UOB PP Visa because it’s generally a lot stricter in its interpretation of what counts as online spending (at least, as compared to the DBS Woman’s World Card). But if you’re going down the usual e-commerce route of Amazon et al, I think it’s quite a safe call to use this card.

Now, the T&C of the UOB PP Visa say this-

The 10X UNI$ for online and Visa payWave transactions is capped at UNI$24,000 for both categories per calendar year. After which, 1X UNI$ will be awarded for every $5 spent.

I’ve read 2 interpretations of this- one school of thought says that the cap is really $13,300 because it is the 9X bonus points that are capped at 24,000 UNI$ a year. Others say that no, it’s similar to the Citibank Rewards card in that the cap on total points is 24,000 UNI$ meaning that you can spend a maximum of $12,000. Frankly. I don’t know what the right answer is, and I’ve never got close enough to the limit to find out.

UOB UNI$ are valid for 2 years.

Conclusion

The cards are ranked in no particular order of merit because the best card for you to use really depends on your current situation. If you’re already accumulating with DBS Altitude for your general spend you might gravitate towards the DBS Woman’s World Card. If you’re a UOB PRVI cardholder, you might go with the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa etc etc.

And finally- Black Friday.

Get it?

OCBC reboots Titanium card, gives you 4 miles per $1 on shopping

I’ve often lamented over the fact that OCBC is missing a convincing miles earning card. And no, I don’t consider the Voyage card to be in that category (read a few thousands words about that here, here and here). Well, perhaps not any longer.

OCBC has just relaunched its Titanium card. The previous version of the Titanium card was underwhelming to say the least, as I mentioned in the OCBC Omnibus entry.

Ahhhh, Titanium. The one card that summed up OCBC’s desperate miles gambit once upon a time. The card proudly trumpeted the ability to earn 1 mile per $1 of local spend and 2 miles per $1 of overseas spend. Then they put in small brackets, subject to minimum spend of $1,500 per month.

This was sad for 2 reasons. First, it was already possible to earn 40% more miles on local spend with other, better cards like the ANZ Travel Card and the PRVI Miles. Second, those cards didn’t have any minimum spend. You’d get 1.4 miles per $1 whether you spent $1 or $10,000. Till this day I can’t figure out why OCBC is so unwilling to bite the bullet and introduce a card that at least matches those offerings (off tangent: I remember once upon a long time ago when American Express proudly said that it was going to award 1 mile per $1 spent so that it was easier for consumers to remember. That despite the fact that rivals were offering 20-30% more. But hey! Easier to remember! That’s something!)

There really is no compelling reason to get this card. JetQuay access is an interesting pitch, but it’s limited to 70 redemptions per month until the end of September 2015 and only for 1 companion, so if you’re travelling as a family this is not an option. In any case the JetQuay “luxury” lounge is extremely underwhelming based on reports online (the only meal options are instant noodles)

The new and improved Titanium Rewards Card

The Titanium card has been rebranded as the Titanium Rewards card effective immediately.

There’s a lot of hue and cry on the website about this but the only thing you need to remember is $1=4 miles whenever you shop (offline or online).

The relevant categories are shown below-

EDIT: Adam on the comments has pointed out a big point of differentiation between the Citi Rewards card and the Titanium Rewards- Citi Rewards doesn’t give 10X on electronics shopping but Titanium does. Which means if you’re going to buy a big ticket electronics item like a desktop PC or a flatscreen TV, you would do a lot better by having a Titanium card (no other card offers bonus points for brick and motar electronics shopping to my knowledge). 

I suppose now it remains to be seen how strict the definition of “online shopping” is. The Citibank Rewards card, for example, has been a bit more liberal than you might expect in its interpretation of “online shopping”. Case in point: buying Starwood points from SPG.com qualifies as online shopping.

The other good thing is that you can get 4 miles per $1 whenever you pay using mobile payments like Android Pay, Apple Pay and Samsung Pay.

OCBC has actually provided a table to explain how the new Titanium Rewards card differs from the old one. I’ll show it here but basically all you need to know is: old card useless, new one kind of useful

The full T&C can be found here. The main points to note are

  • The maximum bonus you can earn per card anniversary year (not calendar year) is based on $12,000 of spending (or 48,000 miles)
  • You earn 10X points at the following merchants
    • MCC 5611: Men’s and Boys’ Clothing and Accessories Stores
    • MCC 5621: Women’s Ready to Wear Stores
    • MCC 5631: Women’s Accessory and Speciality Stores
    • MCC 5641: Children’s and Infants’ Wear Stores
    • MCC 5651: Family Clothing Stores
    • MCC 5661: Shoe Stores
    • MCC 5691: Men’s and Women’s Clothing Stores
    • MCC 5732: Electronics Stores
    • MCC 5699: Miscellaneous Apparel and Accessory Shops
    • MCC 5311: Department Stores
  • The bonus 9X points will be posted to your card account by the end of the next calendar month following the transaction
  • OCBC points last for 2 years before expiring (although once you transfer to Krisflyer you get another 3 years validity)

Conclusion

This is definitely a welcome move from OCBC and finally provides them with something of a competitive miles offerings. There are obvious overlaps with the Citibank Rewards card, but if you’re trying to hit the minimum spending requirements to earn bonus interest on your 360 account for example, it might be worth giving this card a look. Just remember that the more you spread out your points, the more you’ll need to pay in conversion fees. So unless you’re planning to do a whole lot of spending on shopping, this might not be the right option for you.

Another interesting thing that crossed my mind was whether this would be a Citibank type situation where you can’t pool your points and end up having to pay multiple conversion fees within one bank. For example, Citibank Rewards earns ThankYou points but the Citibank Premiermiles earns Premiermiles. The two cannot be converted together (by right- I know you can call in and ask for both to be done at once and the CSO might grant it to you as a “one time exception”) and therefore you end up paying 2 conversion fees which is really dumb. My suspicion is that it will be the same for Voyage + Titanium Rewards holders because the Titanium Rewards card earns OCBC$ but the Voyage earns Voyage miles (Assuming you wanted to convert your Voyage miles to Krisflyer miles which is a really dumb choice)

Credit card reboots can sometimes be gamechanging, and other times completely underwhelming. While I wouldn’t call offering 4 miles per $1 gamechanging (because it’s been done before), this is definitely a step in the right direction for OCBC.