Head-to-head: UOB Preferred Platinum Visa vs UOB Visa Signature

Last Updated:

The UOB Preferred Platinum Visa and UOB Visa Signature are great choices for "one card" solutions. But they're not quite interchangeable.

If you want to accelerate your miles collection but can’t be bothered to memorise which card to use when, the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa and UOB Visa Signature are probably the two best options.

Instead of burdening you with a list of bonus-eligible Merchant Category Codes (MCCs), both cards award 4 mpd for all contactless transactions, simple as that (standard rewards exclusions like education, hospitals and UOB$ merchants notwithstanding). This makes them a jack-of-all-trades solution: whether you’re dining out, getting a haircut, shopping for clothes or buying pet food, don’t think; just tap.

On the surface, the two cards have very similar value propositions. However, there are some crucial differences in that would-be cardholders should take note of.

Annual Fee & Income Requirement

 UOB PPVUOB VS
Income RequirementS$30K p.a.S$50K p.a.
Annual FeeS$192.60
(FYF)
S$214
(FYF)

The UOB Preferred Platinum Visa has an income requirement of S$30,000 per year, the MAS-mandated minimum. The UOB Visa Signature has a slightly higher requirement of S$50,000 per year, a vestigial trace of its origins as a mass affluent card.

But any income requirement over S$30,000 is essentially arbitrary, and there have been many reports of successful applications from readers who didn’t meet the UOB Visa Signature’s cut off. It never hurts to try.

The annual fee for both cards is waived for the first year, and I’ve never had an issue with waivers in subsequent years either. Do remember that UOB will automatically deduct UNI$ to cover the annual fee (UNI$6,500 for both), so the onus is on you to monitor your balance and request a waiver when that happens. 

Minimum Spend & Caps

 UOB PPVUOB VS
Min. Spend for 4 mpdNoneS$1K per statement month
4 mpd CapS$1.1K per calendar monthS$2K per statement month

The UOB Preferred Platinum Visa awards 4 mpd on contactless spending, with no minimum spend required. This is capped at S$1,110 per calendar month (not S$1,000 as commonly thought, read the T&Cs carefully). 

The UOB Visa Signature awards 4 mpd on contactless spending, provided a minimum local spend of S$1,000 per statement month is met. This is capped at S$2,000 per statement month.

Note also the difference between calendar and statement month. Calendar month is straightforward (e.g. 1-31 January), but statement month varies from person to person. Generate your UOB e-statement and look for the statement date at the top right hand corner. This tells you what your statement month is; in the example below, it’s 13th to the 12th of the following month.

The UOB Visa Signature’s 4 mpd cap resets at the start of each statement month, but to simplify matters, you can always call up customer service and ask them to change your statement date to follow the calendar month instead.

Bonus points and rounding

 UOB PPVUOB VS
1X Base PointsAwarded at time of trxn.Awarded at time of trxn.
9X Bonus PointsAwarded at time of trxn.Awarded the following month

UOB cardholders will be unhappily aware of the bank’s “S$5 rounding policy”, which can lead to lost points on every transaction. 

Simply put, UOB rounds transactions down to the nearest S$5 before awarding points. A S$9.99 transaction earns the same number of points as a S$5 transaction, and a S$4.99 transaction earns no points at all!

That’s the case with the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa, which awards the base 1X and bonus 9X points at the time the transaction posts. 

💳 UOB Pref. Plat. Visa
SpendRateCalculation
Base1 UNI$ per S$5Round down transaction to nearest S$5, then divide by 5 and multiply by 1. Round down to the nearest whole number
Bonus9 UNI$ per S$5Round down transaction to nearest S$5, then divide by 5 and multiply by 9. Round down to the nearest whole number

But it’s slightly different with the UOB Visa Signature, which awards the base 1X points when the transaction posts, and the bonus 9X points the following period.

💳 UOB Visa Signature
SpendRateCalculation
Base1 UNI$ per S$5Round down transaction to nearest S$5, then divide by 5 and multiply by 1. Round down to the nearest whole number
Bonus9 UNI$ per S$5Sum up all eligible transactions (including cents), round down transaction to nearest S$5, then divide by 5 and multiply by 9. Round down to the nearest whole number

When calculating the bonus to award, all unrounded eligible transactions will be summed up. The consolidated figure is then rounded down once to the nearest S$5 before the 9X points are calculated. This means less “wastage”, because rounding only takes place once, as opposed to on each transaction. 

In other words, rounding is more benign for the UOB Visa Signature Card, compared to the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa. For more details on this quirk, refer to the article below.

Is UOB’s points rounding policy as bad as it seems?

Definition of contactless payments

 UOB PPVUOB VS
Physical Card
Mobile Wallets

While both the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa and UOB Visa Signature award 4 mpd on contactless payments, there is a crucial distinction in definition.

With the UOB Visa Signature, you can either tap the physical card, or digitise it into a mobile wallet (Apple Pay, Fitbit Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay) and tap your phone.

With the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa, you must digitise the card into a mobile wallet. Transactions made by tapping the physical card will not earn bonus miles, effective 22 May 2020.

Other bonus categories

 UOB PPVUOB VS
Other Bonus CategoriesOnline trxns. on shopping, electronics, supermarkets, food delivery, entertainmentPetrol, foreign currency spending

While 4 mpd on contactless spending is the big draw for both the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa and UOB Visa Signature, both cards have other bonus categories that can be equally useful.

The UOB Preferred Platinum Visa earns 4 mpd on online shopping and entertainment, defined as:

CategoryMCCs
Department & Retail Stores4816, 5262, 5306, 5309, 5310, 5311, 5331, 5399, 5611, 5621, 5631,5641, 5651, 5661, 5691, 5699, 5732-5735, 5912, 5942, 5944-5949, 5964-5970, 5992, 5999, 5641, 5651, 5661, 5691, 5699, 5732-5735, 5912, 5942, 5944-5949
Supermarkets, Dining & Food Delivery5811,5812,5814, 5333, 5411, 5441, 5462, 5499, 8012, 9751
Entertainment & Ticketing7278, 7832, 7841, 7922, 7991, 7996, 7998-7999

This includes Amazon, Qoo10, Lazada, Redmart, FairPrice, Golden Village, SISTIC, Food Panda, Deliveroo and GrabFood, among others (as a side note, I can’t be the only one who finds it amusing that MCC 5967 made it into the whitelist- that’s the specific MCC set aside for websites that create, shall we say, artistic and educational videos).

For avoidance of doubt, the 4 mpd cap is shared between these bonus categories and contactless spending. To illustrate, a cardholder who spends S$800 on contactless spending and S$500 on online food delivery will only earn 4 mpd on S$1,110 of spend. 

The UOB Visa Signature earns 4 mpd on petrol and foreign currency spending, provided the following conditions are met:

  • Petrol (except Shell & SPC): Minimum local spend of S$1,000 per statement month
  • Foreign Currency Spend: Minimum overseas spend of S$1,000 per statement month

For avoidance of doubt, the 4 mpd cap is shared between these bonus categories and contactless spending. To illustrate, a cardholder who spends S$1,800 on contactless spending and S$500 on petrol will only earn 4 mpd on S$2,000 of spend. 

While my first choice for overseas spending is still the Amaze + Citi Rewards Card (4 mpd + zero FCY fees, spread aside), that option won’t last forever. And when it inevitably gets nerfed,  it’s good to have the UOB Visa Signature to fall back on.

Conclusion

Even though the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa and UOB Visa Signature have overlapping use cases, there are important differences where minimum spend, points calculation, contactless definition and other bonus categories are concerned.

If you’re a small spender, the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa is probably the better option due to its lack of a minimum spend requirement. Bigger spenders will benefit more from the UOB Visa Signature and its higher monthly 4 mpd cap. 

Should you plan to use both, I’d highly recommend spending on the UOB Visa Signature first, before switching to the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa. The last thing you want is to hit the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa’s cap, only to realise you have just S$500-600 of spending left for the month which earns a mere 0.4 mpd on the UOB Visa Signature (as the minimum spend hasn’t been triggered).

UOB Preferred Platinum Visa vs UOB Visa Signature: Which do you prefer?

Aaron Wong
Aaron Wong
Aaron founded The Milelion to help people travel better for less and impress chiobu. He was 50% successful.

Similar Articles

Comments

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

17 Comments
Oldest
Newest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
phister

If I’m just doing Paywave, the VS wins hands down as I hate pulling out my phone and selecting the PPV card on Google Pay (it isn’t the default payment method for me).

GeoY

i mean sure, if you are certainly spending above $1k that month. But anyways, Apple, Samsung Pay and some others works too, not just Google

Walder

For contactless transactions, do transactions in foreign countries and / or foreign currencies qualify for 4mpd for both cards? Thanks.

GeoY

I’ve read on other forums that ppl have tried it and it works, but personally I can’t confirm that. But based on the T&Cs, it should work.

WJH

For the UOB VS, do you know if the foreign currency spending can be shared as well? For eg: S$800 spend in foreign currency + S$800 in contactless spending; a total of S$1600 gets awarded 4mpd?

UOB

No.

George

If I made transactions with 9.50. Does 4.5 count towards 1110 or 2000 threshold?

rdtawac

does the UOB professionals card share the same features as the PPV?

David

Hi Aaron, thanks for the write up. I seem to recall the PPV monthly 4mpd limit being $1,110 (due to a quirk in the way the bonus UNI$ cap is calculated), rather than $1,000. Is this no longer the case?

David

Sorry, just saw that this has now been updated in the article. Thanks!

Bruno

I’d recommend the HSBC revolution to someone who wants the simplicity of one card. Especially if typical spend is under 1K.

Covers the most common categories both online + contactless with 4mpd, no UNI$ merchants or rounding rules, free HSBC entertainer account, and especially no need to look after annual fee waivers.

SYC

Hi, should I apply for 2 separate principal cards (me and partner) to maximise the caps or are the caps per cardholder (i.e. principal card at 2k plus supplementary card at 2k for the VS?)

CSS

I only use VS when travelling overseas as it is giving more miles for offline transaction (not all overseas merchant accepts contactless) like Dental in Bkk, hotels etc when charge in foreign currency than general card like PRVI.

Swen

I’m wondering if the article should be updated to mention that online recurring payments on UOB PPV do not give you the bonus points. I’m talking about recurring payments like Apple TV / HBO Go / YouTube Premium. LinkedIn still earns bonus points.

Hugo

I tried to apply online for PPV and the site gives error, in person at the branch and cannot sign up because it’s an older card. Anyone with the same issue seems like I can’t get the card XD

CREDIT CARD SIGN UP BONUSES

Advertisment

Featured Deals

Advertisment

Follow us

7,110FansLike
2,641FollowersFollow

RECENT COMMENTS

TAGS