From 1 June 2022, DBS will add all Amaze transactions to its rewards exclusion list, ending the possibility of earning 4 mpd with the DBS Woman’s World Card (or any points with any DBS card, for that matter).
This was confirmed in an update to the DBS Rewards T&Cs posted yesterday afternoon, under point 2.6.
|⚠️ New DBS Rewards Exclusion|
|Any transaction with transaction description “AMAZE*” (with effect from 1 June 2022)|
You can’t say it hasn’t been coming…
DBS adds Amaze to rewards exclusions
All Amaze transactions on the DBS Woman’s World Card posted by 31 May 2022 will continue to earn 10X DBS Points (4 mpd), as per normal.
From 1 June 2022, all Amaze transactions posted to the DBS Woman’s World Card will cease to earn DBS Points, period. The only benefit will be the 0.5% or 1% cashback from Amaze, plus the avoidance of DBS’s 3.25% FCY transaction fee.
Currently, the two best cards to pair with Amaze are, by a long shot, the DBS Woman’s World Card and Citi Rewards Card. This doesn’t mean they’re the only options (see below for alternatives), but they’re the most fuss-free thanks to their blacklist-not-whitelist approach.
|Blacklist Approach||Whitelist Approach|
So by holding the DBS Woman’s World Card and Citi Rewards Card, you could easily earn 4 mpd on up to S$3,000 of spending each month (remember, Amaze converts all transactions into online spend), with no FCY transaction fees and up to 1% cashback.
Given the increasing popularity of Amaze, it was surely only a matter of time before one of the banks decided to take action, but if I had to choose, I’d rather it have been Citi than DBS. That’s because the Citi Rewards Card has one glaring omission: you won’t earn 4 mpd on any transaction with a travel MCC.
This means that if you’re paying for any of the following, the Citi Rewards Card would be the wrong card to pair with Amaze:
- Buying flight tickets
- Paying for a hotel stay
- Paying a tour agency or activities provider
- Buying train tickets
- Booking a rental car
- Booking a cruise
It’s not the end of the world, since travel can be a bonus category for the UOB Lady’s Card, but its appeal is limited to half the population (or those with wives/girlfriends/wives and girlfriends), and UOB requires you to pick and choose your bonus categories (so selecting travel must come at the expense of some other category).
Here’s a comment from an Instarem representative regarding DBS’s decision.
“amaze is well-positioned as the best travel card in Singapore for many reasons. We believe customers are discerning and will continue to maximize their rewards by pairing amaze with other bank cards.
We are currently seeing amaze customers saving on big ticket purchases, especially while they are travelling – saving them the hassle of dealing with spend limits that they may face when paying with multi-currency wallet players. They also avoid having to top up and deal with bank FX admin fees.
We are continually working to strengthen the amaze card proposition and we have a line-up of exciting features we will be announcing in the coming weeks”
Which other banks exclude Amaze?
For the moment, DBS is the only bank with Amaze on its exclusion list.
UOB technically added AMAZE*TRANSIT* to its exclusion list back on 1 March 2022, but that’s not significant in and of itself. It simply means you won’t earn any rewards should you pair your Amaze to a UOB card and tap the Amaze for SimplyGo rides. All other Amaze transactions are kosher (for now).
But it’s very clear that Amaze is now on banks’ radars, and I’d be very surprised if it made it through the rest of 2022 unscathed.
What other cards can you use with Amaze?
As a reminder, Amaze can only be paired with credit cards on the Mastercard network, which leaves the following as the best alternatives to the DBS Woman’s World Card:
|4 mpd1||All online transactions except travel|
|OCBC Titanium Rewards|
|UOB Lady’s Card|
Pick 1 (Lady’s) or 2 (Lady’s Solitaire) per quarter
|UOB Lady’s Solitaire|
|1. Capped at the first S$1,000 per statement month|
2. Capped at the first S$12,000 per membership year
3. Capped at the first S$1,000 per calendar month
4. Capped at the first S$3,000 per calendar month
My new strategy going forward will be to:
- Use the Citi Rewards as my primary Amaze pairing
- Use the UOB Lady’s Solitaire Card (courtesy of the MileLioness) for dining and travel- the two categories I’m most likely to spend on when overseas
- Use the OCBC Titanium Rewards for shopping, especially when dealing with big-ticket items (since the 4 mpd cap is applied by membership year)
These three cards should be able to cover most of my overseas spending, though there’ll definitely be more switching back and forth compared to before.
From 1 June 2022, DBS will stop issuing rewards points for all Amaze transactions. This gives you one last month to rack up some points, and thank my lucky stars I’m heading to New Zealand in May instead of June.
It’s not the end of the Amaze story, insofar as there are other cards which still give 4 mpd, but it’s definitely a sign of the times. To be fair, we knew that Amaze’s double dipping wouldn’t last forever. Opportunities come and go (remember Imagine?), so make hay while you can.
What’s your revised Amaze strategy going to be?