OCBC has launched a new sign-up offer on the OCBC 90°N Visa Card that runs from now till 31 May 2022.
- New OCBC cardholders who apply for an OCBC 90°N Visa Card and spend at least S$10,000 in foreign currency in the first 3 months will receive a bonus of 20,000 Travel$
- Existing OCBC cardholders who apply for an OCBC 90°N Visa Card and spend at least S$9,000 in local or foreign currency in the first 3 months will receive a bonus of 2,500 Travel$
While the OCBC 90°N Visa launched with some very attractive offers, the core value proposition has notably weakened since then. I’d consider the current product to be fundamentally unattractive, due to its S$5 earning blocks, mandatory S$53.50 annual fee (with no waiver for the first year- unheard of for a card targeting the S$30,000 annual income segment), and mediocre earn rates.
OCBC 90°N Visa Sign Up Offer
To be eligible for this offer, customers must apply for an OCBC 90°N Visa Card from 10 April to 31 May 2022 and pay a non-waivable annual fee of S$53.50.
They must also be among the first 10,000 applicants to meet either one of the criteria below.
|❓ New-to-bank definition|
|New-to-bank customers are described as those who do not currently hold a principal OCBC credit card, and have not cancelled one in the past 12 months|
New customers who spend at least S$10,000 in foreign currency within 3 months of approval will receive up to 50,000 Travel$.
OCBC’s website describes this as “up to 5 Travel$ per S$1 spent on foreign currency”, but that’s rather misleading. Instead, it might be more accurately described as “up to 4 Travel$ per S$1 spent on foreign currency, with 10,000 Travel$ for topping up the annual fee”.
To break it down, new-to-bank customers who spend at least S$10,000 in foreign currency within the first 3 months will receive:
- 20,000 base Travel$ (based on S$10,000 @ 2 mpd)
- 20,000 bonus Travel$ for meeting the minimum spend
Cardholders who pay an additional admin fee (link not working) of S$139 will receive an additional 10,000 Travel$. However, given this option is available to all cardholders, it can’t really be considered as part of the sign-up bonus.
The “true bonus” here is therefore just 20,000 Travel$.
Existing customers who spend at least S$9,000 in any mix of local or foreign currency within 3 months of approval will receive up to 31,500 Travel$.
While this may sound generous on the surface, break the offer down and it’s much less impressive. Assuming all S$9,000 is spent in local currency, cardholders will receive:
- 9,000 base Travel$ (based on S$9,000 @ 1 mpd)
- 2,500 bonus Travel$ for meeting the minimum spend
Cardholders who pay an additional admin fee (link not working) of S$139 will receive an additional 10,000 Travel$. Again, since this option is available to all cardholders, it can’t really be considered as part of the sign-up bonus.
The “true bonus” here is therefore just 2,500 Travel$.
When must the spending be made by?
The minimum spend requirement must be met by the following dates:
|Card Approval Month||Qualifying Spend End Date|
|April 2022||31 July 2022|
|May 2022||31 August 2022|
What counts as qualifying spending?
Qualifying spend refers to in-person or online retail transactions, excluding transactions such as:
- Charitable Donations
- Government Transactions
- GrabPay top-ups
The full list of non-qualifying spend can be found in the OCBC 90°N Visa’s overall T&Cs.
When will the bonus miles be credited by?
Bonus miles will be credited 2 months after the qualifying spend end date. Cardholders who were approved in April can expect to receive their miles by 30 September 2022, while those approved in May can expect to receive their miles by 31 October 2022.
Terms & Conditions
The T&Cs for this offer can be found here.
Recap: OCBC 90°N Visa
|Income Req.||S$30,000 p.a||Points Validity||No expiry|
|Annual Fee||S$53.50||Min. |
|Miles with |
|Pay S$139 extra for 10,000 Travel$||Transfer |
|FCY Fee||3.25%||Transfer Fee||None|
|Local Earn||1.0 mpd||Points Pool?||Yes|
(with other Travel$ cards)
|FCY Earn||2.0 mpd||Lounge Access?||No|
|Special Earn||3.0 mpd on streaming, 1.5 mpd on food delivery, online shopping, groceries||Airport Limo?||No|
|Cardholder Terms and Conditions|
The OCBC 90°N Visa has a mandatory S$53.50 annual fee, which already makes it an outlier amongst other entry-level miles cards which offer at the very least a first-year fee waiver.
Some people might be content to pay the fee if the miles accrual rates were good, but that’s not the case here either. The OCBC 90°N Visa earns a very mediocre 1 mpd on local spend and 2 mpd on foreign currency spending. This makes it the lowest-earning miles card on the market right now (other entry-level miles cards have local earn rates of 1.1-1.4 mpd).
There are some bonus categories such as 3 mpd on streaming services, and 1.5 mpd on online food delivery, online shopping and groceries, but you could always earn up to 4 mpd with alternatives like the Citi Rewards or DBS Woman’s World Card.
To be sure, there’s some bright spots: Travel$ never expire, and can be transferred to KrisFlyer with no conversion fees and a minimum of just 1,000 Travel$.
But considering the annoying S$5 earning blocks (which means a $9.99 transaction earns the same miles as a $5 transaction, and a $4.99 transaction earns nothing at all), and weak earn rates, there isn’t a compelling reason to get the OCBC 90°N Visa right now, in my opinion.
While it’s always good to see a new sign-up offer on the market, this one is hard to recommend. A new-to-bank customer could earn 20,000 bonus Travel$ for S$10,000 in foreign currency spending, but why not just put that spend on the Amaze + Citi Rewards/DBS Woman’s World Card instead?
You’d save on the 3.25% FCY fee, earn 1% cashback and 4 mpd (subject to a monthly cap of course, but someone with 3 months and both the Citi and DBS cards would have a S$9K cap to play with), plus avoid having to pay any kind of annual fees.
There’s better deals out there.