Confirmed: UOB$ merchants qualify for bonus miles with UOB cards

Contrary to popular belief, UOB cardholders can earn up to 3.6 mpd at Cold Storage, Giant and other UOB$ merchants.

It’s long been thought that UOB cards should not be used at UOB$ merchants (formerly known as SMART$ merchants), such as Giant or Cold Storage.

That’s because UNI$ and KrisFlyer miles are not awarded for transactions at UOB$ merchants. Cardholders instead earn UOB$, which are basically a form of captive cashback that can only be redeemed on your next bill at the same merchant. It’s usually a miserable return, quite frankly, and another UOB shenanigan that gets on many peoples’ nerves. 

However, it’s not so straightforward- and that’s a good thing, in this case. I’ve recently been able to confirm with UOB that certain UOB cards are eligible for bonus UNI$ for transactions at UOB$ merchants, even if base UNI$ are not awarded.

How bonus UNI$ work with UOB$ merchants

Certain UOB cards will still earn bonus UNI$ at UOB$ merchants like Cold Storage

Here’s the short version, for those who just want the tl;dr:

  • UOB Lady’s Card, Lady’s Solitaire Card and Visa Signature will earn 3.6 mpd (9X UNI$) at UOB$ merchants, in addition to UOB$ (assuming, of course, you select Family as your bonus category for the Lady’s Cards and meet the minimum spend of S$1,000 on the Visa Signature)
  • UOB Preferred Platinum Visa will earn no miles at UOB$ merchants, only UOB$

Why the distinction? It all boils down to how bonus points are awarded:

  • With the UOB Lady’s Card, Lady’s Solitaire Card and Visa Signature, bonus points are awarded separately from the base points, as a consolidated lump sum the following month
  • With the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa, bonus points are awarded together with the base points, as soon as the transaction posts
❓ What about cards that don’t earn bonuses? 

The UOB Visa Infinite Metal Card, UOB PRVI Miles Mastercard, UOB PRVI Miles Visa and KrisFlyer UOB Credit Card will not earn any UNI$ or KrisFlyer miles at UOB$ merchants.

The UOB PRVI Miles AMEX will earn UNI$ at UOB$ merchants as it does not participate in the UOB$ programme.

You can see this mechanic at play in your UOB TMRW app. 

In the screenshot above, the LHS shows points earned on the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa. You’ll notice the bonus 9X UNI$ (162) is tied to a specific merchant — Raffles Medical Group in this case — and is posted along with the base 1X UNI$ (18). 

The RHS shows points earned on the UOB Lady’s Solitaire Card. You’ll notice that there’s one lump sum figure credited each month for each of the two bonus categories, Family (180 UNI$) and Dining (144 UNI$). They’re not tied to any specific merchant because they’re an aggregated figure, the sum total of all eligible spending in a given month. 

When you use the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa at a UOB$ merchant, you won’t earn any base UNI$. Because of that, the system will not award you any bonus UNI$ either (9X zero is still zero).

When you use the UOB Lady’s Card, Lady’s Solitare Card or Visa Signature at a UOB$ merchant, you won’t earn any base UNI$ either. But at the end of the month, when the system sums up all eligible transactions for the purposes of awarding 9X, it does not care whether the transaction was a UOB$ merchant- everything goes into the pool.

To illustrate this, suppose I use my UOB Lady’s Card to make 3x transactions at Cold Storage in a given calendar month:

  • Transaction 1: S$15
  • Transaction 2: S$30
  • Transaction 3: S$45

I will initially receive 0 base UNI$, because this is a UOB$ merchant. 

However, the following calendar month, I will receive 162 bonus UNI$, attributable as follows:

  • Transaction 1: 0 base UNI$, 27 bonus UNI$
  • Transaction 2: 0 base UNI$, 54 bonus UNI$
  • Transaction 3: 0 base UNI$, 81 bonus UNI$

162 UNI$= 324 miles, which given a total spend of S$90 works out to 3.6 mpd.

For a more detailed understanding of how points are calculated and rounded, refer to the article below. 

How to calculate credit card points: Specialised spending cards

The upshot is that you don’t need to avoid the UOB Lady’s Card, Lady’s Solitaire Card and Visa Signature at UOB$ merchants. Yes, 4 mpd would be better than 3.6 mpd, but if you’re already using other UOB cards, then the benefit of pooled UNI$ might offset a 10% loss in earnings. 

Which merchants earn UOB$?

The list of UOB$ merchants continues to grow, unfortunately. In addition to long-time members like Cold Storage, Giant, Guardian and Cathay Cineplexes, new names like Starbucks and Crystal Jade have joined. 

Below is a list of UOB$ merchants, accurate at the time of publishing. Always refer to the official website for the latest list.

⚠️UOB$ Merchants
  • 8 Degrees Taiwanese Bistro
  • Aburi-EN Grand (Paragon)
  • Baker & Cook
  • Bee Cheng Hiang
  • BreadTalk
  • Canteen by Trapeze Rec. Club
  • Cellarbration
  • CHICA San Chen
  • Co Chung
  • Crystal Jade Group (ex. Changi Airport)
  • Famous Kitchen
  • Famous Palace
  • Fatburger & Buffalo’s
  • Feng Tian Xiao Chu
  • Hard Rock Cafe
  • Indian House
  • I.N.U Cafe & Boutique
  • Mr Coconut
  • Mun Zuk
  • Nam Kee Chicken Rice Restaurant
  • PastaGo
  • Patisserie G
  • Polar Puffs & Cakes
  • Potato Corner
  • Prince Kitchen
  • Q-WA Izakaya
  • Starbucks (ex. Jewel and Changi Airport)
  • Tangmen Restaurant
  • Tian Tian You Yu
  • ToastBox
  • Wangzi Music Restaurant
  • Xiu Jie Shan Cheng Fish
  • Yuan Cuisine Group
Gourmet Dining
  • Bincho at Hua Bee & Min Jiang
  • Marguerite
  • Hortus
  • Kotuwa
  • Majestic Bay
  • Meatsmith Little India & Telok Ayer
  • Restaurant Majestic
  • The Market Grill & Wine 90
  • Cold Storage (includes CS Fresh, Market Place, Jasons, Jasons Deli)
  • Giant
Retail and Services
  • agnes B
  • Buff’d Nail Spa
  • bYSI
  • Crocodile
  • Delta Dental Surgeons
  • DermaCurate
  • EMW Physiotherapy & TCM
  • Gordon Max
  • G-Star Raw
  • Guardian
  • Honey World
  • iRUN
  • Limited Edt Underground
  • Maco Nail Spa
  • Miniso
  • MissFit
  • Mr Jeff
  • New Era
  • Optique Paris Miki
  • Perky Lash
  • Picota Nail Spa
  • Pixie Nail Spa
  • Qoosh Nail Spa
  • Replay
  • Salivan Beauty Clinic
  • Sports Fashion
  • Winter Time
  • Weston Corp
Travel and Entertainment
  • Cathay Cineplexes
  • City Tours


UOB cardholders can earn up to 3.6 mpd at Guardian

If you’re a UOB Lady’s Card, Lady’s Solitaire Card or Visa Signature cardholder, UOB has confirmed you’ll still earn up to 3.6 mpd at the dreaded UOB$ merchants. While that’s not quite as good as 4 mpd, it’s certainly a lot better than the 0 we had previously assumed!

Moreover, it frees up the HSBC Revolution’s precious 4 mpd cap to be used on other bonus categories, since you can now channel more of your supermarket spend towards UOB. 

Do note that you should still avoid using the UOB Preferred Platinum Visa, UOB Visa Infinite Metal Card, UOB PRVI Miles Mastercard, UOB PRVI Miles Visa and KrisFlyer UOB Credit Card at UOB$ merchants, because you won’t earn anything beyond some miserable UOB$.

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

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Good to know, thanks.


Thanks a lot for this info! 🤯 I can finally retire the HSBC Revolution with its orphan points.

Can I confirm that the Lady’s Solitaire earns 3.6mpd for groceries at Cold Storage even if I choose Fashion & Dining as my bonus categories (I often exceed the 3K cap)?

Can I also confirm that I don’t have to hit the minimum spending of S$1K on the Visa Signature to earn 3.6mpd at Cold Storage?


To get 4MPD on both cards, the prerequisites must be fulfilled. So you need to have the right categories or minimum spending to get the combined 4MPD (0.4+3.6) on your cards.

SQ Flyer

Did you read the article?


I think she’s just trolling 😂


Hi Aaron, how does one utilize UOB$? I can’t never ever seem to have it utilized at the merchants so it just sits idly….


sorry i mean i can never seem to have it utilized

bt tan

it’s an auto rebate scheme when you go back to same merchant.


Will it affect if we use Kris+? because one time I accidentally used UOB PPV to purchase Bee Cheng Hiang – which supposed to be in UOB$ merchant and still got the extra 9x points


Does this include Shell as well? Since Shell no longer awards UNI$ but was still excluded from UOB VS 4mpd?

Aaron Y

By this logic, shouldn’t the UOB KF card award its “accelerated” miles from UOB$ merchants after compiling them over a year?


OMG. Thank you so much for this ML!

I have been charging all my Cold Storage spends to UOB Priva Visa (don’t use the Amex one too much) and had NO idea they were earning Zero Uni$!!! 🤦‍♀️

Gonna switch to UOB Lady’s card where I’ll get some points at least… can’t believe what a noob (points collection) mistake I’ve made, when life gets too hectic!


Any idea if is possible to earn 5.6mpd on SPC petrol?