Credit Cards

Review: OCBC 90°N Card

With an uncapped 4 mpd on overseas spending and Singapore Airlines, plus 8 mpd on AirBnB, Expedia, and Agoda, the OCBC 90°N Card is true north for miles chasers.

OCBC has launched the OCBC 90°N Card, a brand new travel credit card that’s offering 4 mpd on overseas spending and selected airlines (including SIA), plus 8 mpd on Airbnb and OTAs like Agoda and Expedia- all without caps for six months

Apply for the OCBC 90°N Card here

Remember, we’re giving away 10 x $50 Taka vouchers to mark the launch- simply head on over to this post and share your craziest miles story in the comments!

Here’s what you need to know about the card, its features and how those big bonuses work. 

OCBC 90°N Card Basics

Income Req.Annual FeeMiles from Annual Fee
S$30,000S$192.60 (first year free)10,000
FCY FeePoints ValidityTransfer Fees
3.0%No expiryNone
Local SpendOverseas SpendSpecial Spend
1.2 mpd2.1 mpd
Until 29 Feb 2020: 4.0 mpd 
Until 29 Feb 2020: 4.0 mpd on SIA group, AirAsia, Jetstar, DFS & Shilla @ Changi, Netflix & Spotify, 8.0 mpd on Airbnb, Millennium Hotels, Agoda, Expedia, Mr & Mrs.Smith

The OCBC 90°N Card is an entry-level credit card, with a S$30,000 annual income requirement.

It carries a S$192.60 annual fee, which is waived for the first year. Paying the annual fee in subsequent years gets you 10,000 miles, identical to what the Citi PremierMiles Visa, KrisFlyer UOB Credit Card, and DBS Altitude are offering. 

OCBC 90°N Card
General T&CBonus Travel$ T&CFAQ

No conversion fees, miles don’t expire

The OCBC 90°N Card earns Travel$, a new rewards currency which can be converted into miles at a 1:1 ratio with no conversion fees. Add the fact that Travel$ do not expire, and you’ll see that they’re more similar to VOYAGE Miles than OCBC$.

 OCBC$Travel$VOYAGE Miles
Earned throughOCBC Titanium RewardsOCBC 90°N CardOCBC VOYAGE
Conversion Ratio (Points: Miles)5:21:11:1, can also be used to pay for revenue flights
Conversion FeesS$25NoneNone
Minimum Conversion25,000 OCBC$1,000 Travel$1 VOYAGE mile
Expiry2 yearsNoneNone
Transfer PartnersKrisFlyerKrisFlyerKrisFlyer

Even better, the minimum conversion block is just 1,000 Travel$, which coupled with the lack of conversion fees makes the OCBC 90°N Card a great option for small top-ups to a KrisFlyer account. KrisFlyer is currently OCBC’s only transfer partner, but I understand there are new ones on the horizon, so keep an eye out for that in the future. 

Advertising

Travel$ can also be converted into cash rebates at a rate of 1,000 Travel$= S$10, or into shopping vouchers at 1,300 Travel$= S$10. Neither option represents particularly good value, so it’s safe to ignore them.

Earn 1.2 mpd on local spend and 4 mpd on overseas spend, with no cap

The OCBC 90°N Card normally earns 1.2 mpd on local spending and 2.1 mpd on overseas spending. However, from now till 29 February 2020, cardholders will earn 4 mpd on all overseas spend, without cap. 

OCBC defines “overseas spend” as any spend in foreign currency, regardless of where payment processing is done. 

Here’s how the earn rates and expiry policy of the OCBC 90°N Card measure up to other credit cards at the $30,000 income mark. 

 Local SpendFCY SpendMiles Expiry
BOC Elite Miles World Mastercard1.53.012-24 months
UOB PRVI Miles1.42.42 years
OCBC 90°N Card1.22.1 4.0 until 29 Feb 2020None
Citi PremierMiles Visa1.22.0None
DBS Altitude1.22.0None
AMEX KrisFlyer Credit Card1.12.0 during June/Dec3 years

Do note that the OCBC 90°N rounds transactions down to the nearest S$1 when awarding Travel$, so the minimum spending to earn points is S$1. This rounding policy actually makes it a better option than the UOB PRVI Miles for transactions <S$30, provided they’re not divisible by 5. 

Curious how banks calculate your points? Learn how rounding policies can affect your miles haul for general and specialized spending cards.

Despite the outsized miles on overseas spend, the OCBC 90°N Card still maintains OCBC’s 3% foreign currency transaction fee. 

 FCYFeeCPMRemarks
OCBC 90°N Card4.03.0%0.75Until 29 Feb 2020
UOB Visa Signature4.03.1% (from 4 Sept)0.78Min S$1K, max S$2K spend per statement period. Payment must be processed outside of Singapore
BOC Elite Miles3.03.0%1.0Payment must be processed outside of Singapore
SCB Visa Infinite3.03.5%1.17Spend >S$2K in a statement period, otherwise 1 mpd
SCB Rewards+2.93.5%1.21Capped at S$2.2K of FCY spend per year
UOB PRVI Miles2.43.25%1.35Payment must be processed outside of Singapore

The fact that the OCBC 90°N Card earns 4 mpd on all overseas spend with no cap, no minimum spend and no “payment processing outside of Singapore” requirement makes it hands down the best card to use for overseas transactions…and a few other things. 

Earn 4 mpd on Singapore Airlines (and others), 8 mpd on Airbnb and selected OTAs

From now till 29 February 2020, OCBC 90°N cardholders will earn 4 mpd at the following merchants, without cap:

AirlinesDuty Free & Subscriptions
  • Singapore Airlines
  • SilkAir
  • Scoot
  • AirAsia
  • Jetstar
  • DFS & Shilla @ Changi
  • Netflix
  • Spotify

You may already be earning 4 mpd on some of these transactions with the DBS Woman’s World card, but remember that this is capped at S$2,000 of online spending per month, and DBS Points earned through the Woman’s card expire in 1 year. The OCBC 90°N Card has no such cap, and its Travel$ never expire.

Cardholders will also earn 8 mpd at the following accommodation and OTA merchants:

We’ve seen other banks offer big miles promotions on Agoda and Expedia before, but those have come with caps on earning. What’s more, this is the first time we’ve seen 8 mpd on Airbnb, which is my fallback option when I can’t find good value hotel redemptions.  

To enjoy 8 mpd on Agoda, you’ll need to make your hotel booking between 26 Aug 2019 and 29 Feb 2020, and stay between 26 Aug 2019 and 30 Sep 2020. This only applies to prepaid bookings, and not bookings where you pay at the destination. 

OCBC 90°N Card x Agoda T&C: Link
Advertising

To enjoy 8 mpd on Expedia, you’ll need to make a booking at an “eligible hotel” or “participating airline”. Eligible hotels can be found here and must be prepaid (the list excludes most major chains). There is no mention of specific stay dates, so presumably as long as you pay before 29 Feb 2020, you’ll get the bonus.

Here’s the list of participating airlines:

  • Air Macau
  • Air Mauritius
  • Air Niugini
  • Cambodia Angkor Air
  • China Eastern Airlines
  • China Southern Airlines
  • Finnair
  • Garuda
  • Hawaiian Air
  • Korean Air
  • Lao Airlines
  • Myanmar International Airways
  • Qatar Airways
  • Saudi Arabian Airlines
  • Shenzhen Airlines
  • Sichuan Airlines
  • THAI Airways
  • Turkish Airlines
  • Xiamen Airlines

This list is identical to that of the UOB PRVI Miles x Expedia 6 mpd promotion, the main difference being that OCBC is offering 8 mpd. 

OCBC 90°N Card x Expedia T&C: Link

Bonus miles post immediately, with the exception of Agoda

Unlike certain cards which delay your bonus miles as much as fourteen months, the OCBC 90°N Card credits base and bonus miles at the same time. 

For example, the 4 mpd on overseas spend consists of a base 1.2 mpd and a bonus 2.8 mpd. Both will be credited as soon as the transaction posts. Ditto for Singapore Airlines, Airbnb and almost all the other bonus merchants. 

The only exception is Agoda, where bonus miles will be credited within 2 calendar months following the cardmember’s stay.

Key exclusions

Like every miles card, the OCBC 90°N Card excludes certain transactions from earning points. Travel$ will not be awarded for spending on the following:

  • Charitable/ religious organizations (MCC: 8398, 8661)
  • Real estate agents and managers (MCC: 6513)
  • Utilities (MCC: 4900)
  • Trading Platforms (MCC: 6211, 6051)
  • Government institutions and services (MCC: 9399, 9211, 9222, 9223, 9311, 9402 and 9405)
  • Insurance Underwriting, Premiums (MCC: 6300, 6399, 5960)
  • Prepaid accounts/ prepaid card (MCC: 6540)
  • Education (MCC: 8211, 8220, 8241, 8244, 8249, 8299)
  • Gambling (MCC 7995)
  • Parking Lots, Parking Meters and Garages (MCC: 7523)
  • Nondurable Goods (MCC 5199)
  • Wire Transfer Money Orders (WTMOs) (MCC 4829)
  • Financial Institutions – Merchandise, Services, and Debt Repayment (MCC 6012)
  • Political Organizations (MCC 8651)
  • Manual Cash disbursement/Automated Cash Disbursement (MCC 6010,
    6012)

These are fairly standard exclusions, although you may want to note in particular that education is excluded. If you were hoping to earn a big miles haul by paying overseas tuition fees, you’ll want to look elsewhere

Sign up bonus: Get up to S$50 and 7,000 miles 

 New OCBC Credit Card applicantsExisting customers
Upon ApprovalS$50N/A
Spend $5,000 within 3 months of approval7,000 Travel$3,000 Travel$

New-to-bank cardholders (defined as those who don’t currently hold OCBC credit cards, and haven’t in the past six months) who spend $5,000 within 3 months of approval will get 7,000 bonus miles and $50 cash, while existing customers will get 3,000 miles. You must be approved by 31 October 2019 to be eligible for this bonus. 

OCBC 90°N Card Sign Up Bonus T&C: Link

As the chart below shows, it’s certainly not the largest sign up bonus in the market (in fact, it’s the smallest). This is a card you get for its raw earning potential on foreign currency, air tickets and hotel stays. 

Does not include base miles, or miles from paying the annual fee. First year fee for Citi PremierMiles Visa is normally waived, but it must be paid to enjoy the sign up bonus.
Advertising

For what it’s worth, OCBC’s 3 month timeline is rather generously implemented. The spending threshold must be reached “by the end of 3 months from card approval date.” That’s to say, if your card is approved on 5 September, you need to spend by 31 December (rest of Sept + Oct-Dec).

Card Approval MonthQualifying Spend End DateMiles Bonus credited by
Aug-1930 Nov 201931 Dec 2019
Sept-1931 Dec 201931 Jan 2020
Oct-1931 Jan 202029 Feb 2020

This gives you as much as four months to hit the threshold, so time your application early in the month. 

No lounge access

If there’s one thing missing from the OCBC 90°N Card, it’s lounge access. To be fair though, it’s not a common feature of cards at the S$30,000 income level- only the Citi PremierMiles Visa and DBS Altitude have it. 

 Complimentary Lounge Visits

BOC Elite Miles World Mastercard
None

UOB PRVI Miles
None

OCBC 90°N Card
None
Citi PremierMiles Visa2 free visits via Priority Pass

DBS Altitude Visa (not AMEX)
2 free visits via Priority Pass
AMEX KrisFlyer Credit CardNone

Since the OCBC 90°N is issued by Mastercard, cardholders can buy US$27 lounge passes (US$32 from 1 October) to more than 1,000 lounges under the Mastercard Airport Experiences platform. That said, it’s fairly easy to find another card on the market with free lounge access, so you shouldn’t be paying out of pocket for it. 

Conclusion

As far as mass market miles cards go, the OCBC 90°N does what it says on the tin, and very well. 

4 mpd on overseas spending may not quite be the 5 mpd offered by the BOC Elite Miles back at launch, but I’m willing to bet that OCBC is going to fulfill cards a heck of a lot faster than BOC. Throw in 4 mpd for SIA-group, AirAsia and Jetstar, plus 8 mpd on hotels and accommodation, and this adds up to a very convincing value proposition. 

Even after the promotion ends in Feb 2020, the OCBC 90°N Card still edges the DBS Altitude and Citi PremierMiles cards on miles earning rates. To be sure, it lacks the lounge access that these cards have, but it counters with a 1,000 transfer block and zero conversion fees. 

tl;dr: If you’ve got travel plans lined up for the next six months, then the OCBC 90°N Card should absolutely be part of your wallet.

Apply for the OCBC 90°N Card here

Advertising

Join the OCBC 90°N Telegram Group for more discussion about the card!


Purchases made through any of the links in this article may generate an affiliate commission that supports the running of the site. Found this post useful? Subscribe to our Telegram Channel to get these posts pushed directly to your phone, or our newsletter (on the right of your screen) for the latest deals and hacks delivered to your inbox.

39
Leave a Reply

Please Login to comment
avatar
19 Comment threads
20 Thread replies
1 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
29 Comment authors
LTSAaron WongMile NewbieggCL Recent comment authors
  Subscribe  
Notify of
POL
Guest
POL

What a stingy sign up bonus…

SK
Guest
SK

Don’t sign up then

ithh
Guest
ithh

Good for use until 29 Feb 2020. After that, switch back to the BOC Elite Miles card.

Syok
Guest
Syok

The best looking card at entry level from OCBC ever, basically the OCBC card design is so lame, their designer deserve to be fired..

No Brainer
Guest
No Brainer

Not a compelling proposition overall. Better miles earning rates during the promo period, and then back to average-ness after that. The promos are key to this card – give them a longer lifespan and OCBC may have a winner on its hands. Otherwise meh as a gen spend card.
Edit for clarity.

milefan
Guest
milefan

this has come just in time for my overseas trip. 4 mpd with no cap ftw

chk
Guest
chk

Since OCBC last year said I don’t qualify for Titanium in writing, I won’t get this card unless I go apply at their branch. Wonder why I am banned by OCBC from getting even their low level cards when after that letter, I can get AMEX charge and X-Card. Must have done something wrong decades ago and blacklisted.

Rainee
Guest
Rainee

can use this card to buy lifemiles/alaskan miles?

may
Guest
may

isn’t prvi fx rate at 3.25%?

SL
Guest
SL

Does buying air tickets from Expedia qualify for 8mpd too?

Hector
Guest
Hector

Yes only with participating airlines

mikey
Guest
mikey

And you must go through their dedicated landing page link http://www.expedia.com.sg/ocbc90n – guessing OCBC gets a referral fee which offsets cost of miles?

TooEasy
Guest
TooEasy

Remember … airlines exclusion, AND hotel exclusions!! Be careful. Hotel are heavily restricted! Basically non chain / branded are ok. Chain and branded hotels are excluded.

curious
Guest
curious

so grab top ups will be counted in as gen spend right? not excluded right?

gg
Guest
gg

Did you test it out?

LS
Guest
LS

Hi,

Can we get points if we use services such as renthero to pay the rent with this card ?
Could such services be used to reach the $5000 expense threshold in 3 months ?

I can’t find the information online; appreciate if you can circulate the information 🙂

HS
Guest
HS

Just to be clear: even all online foreign currency spend qualify for 4mpd? It appears so to me in the T&C

Almerick
Guest
Almerick

Anyone applied and already received the card? I used MyInfo to apply when this article came out but til now no word 😐

NJG
Guest
NJG

I only tried to apply for one online just now using MyInfo, and as soon as I enter the first page worth of information on the OCBC website and click “next”, I get a “system error” message, even after using different browsers. After calling OCBC to check on this, all they say is “Can you try again later, pls?”. Doesn’t inspire much confidence in their IT set-up…

NJG
Guest
NJG

Update: After unsuccessfully trying for three consecutive days to apply for this card using MyInfo across multiple browsers and devices, today I decided to use the traditional method of filling in my information myself instead. And voila, the system accepted my application – though I do not know yet whether I have been successful or not. So it appears that at least for some people, OCBC cannot use MyInfo as a method to apply for cards yet.

HS
Guest
HS

My application was approved in the same day.

J
Guest
J

I applied through MyInfo yesterday and no word as well – no email notification, nothing. (I had my expectations set high from the “same day approvals” remarks I guess)
I clicked to OCBC via the referal link in this article

Owen
Guest
Owen

Does this count as one of the OCBC Credit Cards for OCBC 360 account bonus?

Ken
Guest
Ken

Applied for the card through “my info” and received the electronic card within a few hours for online usage. By evening there was a courier at my door delivering the physical card-absolutely amazed with the service. I have been using the BOC elite Card for all my general foreign spends since Nov 2018 but this one definitely is a fantastic promo. The only critique I have is that they award 4mpd for Shilla & [email protected] Changi but not for online changi portal: ishop changi! Also while other OCBC credit cards offer fuel discount, there is no promo for fuel on… Read more »

LTS
Guest
LTS

What does FCY 4.0 mean?

CL
Guest
CL

Ocbc is now saying that SQ website ticket purchases will only get the 4mpd if cardholders go to ocbc website first and click through to SQ. Otherwise, if purchases are made directly, only 1.2mpd. This doesn’t seem to be stated anywhere on the T&Cs.

Mile Newbie
Guest
Mile Newbie

Curios if only the Airbnb bonus only applies to accommodations? Or experiences/tours bought on Airbnb counts toward this too?

LTS
Guest
LTS

Does Grab top up qualify for miles?