By this time you might have seen it mentioned in the Milelion Telegram group; or perhaps you’ve heard the ads on the radio. Yes, it’s true – for the low, low price of $5, you can get access to Entertainer 1-for-1 deals if you’re a HSBC cardholder. For those of you still holding on to the HSBC Advance card (RIP 2017), here’s the moment where you can pat yourself on the back for
being too lazy to cancel the card holding on to the card for contingency purposes.
We all know that if a deal sounds too good to be true, it probably is. The version of the Entertainer offered by HSBC is a limited one; while I personally think it’s still a pretty great deal, that’s something you should be aware of when deciding whether to get it.
The full details of the HSBC Entertainer deal can be found on the official website, but I’ll give a quick breakdown here.
First up – what’s the Entertainer?
Aaron’s already previously taken a look at the Entertainer; not that much has changed so I won’t go into much detail here. In a nutshell, it’s a whole bunch of 1-for-1 coupons that could possibly save you lots of money on dining and/or hotels, depending on your preferences for these categories; however, the retail price is S$145 (currently on ‘CNY offer’ at $95) so some dedicated spending is required to break even, let alone benefit from having it.
With this in mind, the $5 cost price offered by the HSBC offer makes it a very much lower risk value proposition – you’ll probably (more than) break even after using just one coupon; anything else beyond that would constitute actual savings already.
How do I get access to the $5 version?
Sign-up involves downloading the HSBC SG app (iOS | Android) and enrolling, charging the $5 enrolment fee to your HSBC credit card. This can be done relatively quickly – within a minute, you should be ready to go! Supplementary cardholders are also eligible.
How do I get it free?
For HSBC Premier MasterCard and HSBC Visa Infinite main credit cardholders, the waiver will be processed in the form of a refund credited to your account in the following month.
What are the differences from the full Entertainer?
(In this section, screenshots come from the iOS version of the full Entertainer and the Android version of the HSBC Entertainer – some visual differences are likely due to differences in mobile operating system. Thanks to Matthew for helping to provide the HSBC Entertainer data.)
When you open the respective Entertainer interfaces, things look similar enough on first glance.
Retail & Services combined
On second glance, however, you might notice that the HSBC version combines “Fashion & Retail” and “Everyday Services” into a single tab – “Retail & Services”. It’s a relatively minor change, and you can browse the list of offers available on the official website. I’m no expert in this area though, and consensus among friends seems to be that these offers are pretty skippable – no harm checking to see if anything catches your eye, though!
Limited F&B establishment access
The official website also allows you to browse the list of F&B outlets available through the HSBC Entertainer. The list is a subset of what’s available on the entire range available on the full Entertainer – to be fair, though, favourites such as Bedrock Bar & Grill and Fat Cow are available via the HSBC.
The list of exclusions is too long to go into here – an obvious item that’s missing is the humble Yoshinoya (I’ve come to realise that’s surprisingly popular among people I know). If you want to really analyse this, you could download the Entertainer app and preview locked offers even without purchasing it.
Two vouchers instead of three
With the full Entertainer, you usually get three vouchers for each establishment. With the HSBC Entertainer, you only get two.
Limited hotel access
Hotel 1-for-1 deals are also accessible via the HSBC Entertainer. Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be an easy way to browse the hotel list online – the offers available to HSBC Entertainer are restricted as well.
For some sense of what’s available, here’s a comparison of what’s available for Indonesia (Bali) and Thailand.
HSBC Entertainer: 21 properties
Full Entertainer: 44 properties
HSBC Entertainer: 25 properties
Full Entertainer: 34 properties
Some additional data (thanks Eddie!) – For China and Hong Kong, there’s no difference in access (though there’s only 1 property for each). For Maldives, all 8 properties available on the full Entertainer are absent from the HSBC Entertainer.
$5 is a really low cost for the potential benefits, even if access to Entertainer deals is restricted. If you hold a HSBC Premier MasterCard or HSBC Visa Infinite, it becomes a no-brainer since you’re essentially getting it free. It’s rather annoying that you can’t browse the hotel offers before buying in, but if you treat those as a bonus rather than what you’re paying $5 for, it’s still a pretty good deal, all things considered!
A tip – if you do get it and are new to the Entertainer, it’s worth getting reading up on its terms & conditions (especially the exclusion dates) – for instance, due to Valentine’s Day and CNY, we can’t actually make use of the deals for the rest of this week!
Also, technically the bill needs to be settled using a HSBC card if using the HSBC Entertainer. No idea if restaurants will enforce this; if so, using a HSBC Revolution Credit Card to earn 2mpd isn’t really the end of the world!