If You Think the Pioneer Generation Card Only Benefits Your Parents, You’re Wrong

pioneer generation card

Peter Lin



By now you would’ve known someone with the Pioneer Generation Card. It could be your grandfather, your aunt, your mother-in-law. Even if you’re too young to have a mother-in-law (and believe me, that’s probably something you don’t want to rush to have) you must’ve seen and heard the many music videos in various Chinese dialects that are now being churned out to encourage the use of the Pioneer Generation card.

Still don’t know what I’m talking about? Here’s Project Superstar winner and Cleo’s Most Eligible Bachelor (back in 2008 lah) Daren Tan to tell you more about it, in Cantonese.

There’s also getai singer Lee Pei Fen singing in Teochew.

Since I’m a kentang, I have no idea what they were singing. But hopefully our Chinese dialect-speaking members of the Pioneer Generation understand! As for the Malay and Tamil-speaking Pioneer Generation, sorry, but you have to wait till the end of the year to hear yours. You know, just like the MRT announcements of old – yours always come at the end.

But, anyway, this article is not about the Pioneer Generation. This article is about YOU. Yes, the children and grandchildren of the Pioneer Generation. Here’s what YOU need to know about their Pioneer Generation Card.


1. Medical Benefits

It was REALLY confusing when the implementation of the medical benefits of the Pioneer Generation Package was staggered over the past year. Basically, when the Pioneer Generation Cards were distributed in September last year, only medical services at polyclinics and specialist outpatient clincs were subsidised for cardholders. The medication subsidies only kicked in at the beginning of this year.

The good news is, the worst is over. Everything has been automated and your parents and grandparents don’t even need to bring out their Pioneer Generation Card when they visit the polyclinics, since their information has already been captured in the system. So no need to remind them to bring the Pioneer Generation Card wherever they go.

There’s still one more aspect of the Pioneer Generation Package to expect – MediShield Life.

When MediShield Life is implemented later this year, almost everyone in Singapore will be expected to pay for coverage. However, if your parents are in the Pioneer Generation, their coverage is subsidised. Using a combination of subsidies and MediSave Top-Ups, those aged 66 to 80 years will need to pay only $291 or less in premiums each year. This is about half what they were supposed to have paid. If they are 81 years old and above, with the MediSave Top-Ups and subsidies, they don’t need to pay premiums at all!

This, of course, has huge implications for you, especially if you’re going to be footing their medical bills. And if your parents are financially independent enough not to rely on you, you may actually benefit from these savings in other ways.


2. NTUC Benefits

NTUC was very happy to jump on the bandwagon when the Pioneer Generation Package was announced. They brought all their different brands on board, and the good news is, you can take advantage of your parents’ Pioneer Generation Cards.

Firstly, Pioneer Generation cardholders will get a 3% discount every Monday at NTUC Fairprice outlets. This is on top of the 2% discount every Tuesday for senior citizens. These aren’t the only supermarkets that offer senior citizen discounts but NTUC Fairprice is the only supermarket that specifically benefits the Pioneer Generation. So get your parents to do your grocery shopping for you! Or better yet, use it as an opportunity to bond with them. And apply for the best credit card for groceries while you’re at it.

Secondly, flashing the Pioneer Generation Card at NTUC Foodfare outlets on Mondays get you a 12% discount. Your parents also get a 6.5% discount at NTUC Unity Pharmacies on the same day. I’m sure I don’t need to go into details about how these discounts help you, right? As mercenary as it sounds, getting them to buy your food and medication using their discounts will help your household save money. Trust me, when it comes to helping you save money, your parents are not going to be upset and play their part.


3. Other non-NTUC benefits

While many companies are offering senior citizen discounts, not too many other businesses are offering discounts and promotions that specifically target Pioneer Generation cardholders. One of the few that do is DiGi Sound Hearing Care Centre which gives discounts off hearing aids, free hearing tests and priority with appointments to Pioneer Generation members. How does this benefit you? Other than the obvious cost-savings, you don’t risk losing your voice if your parents are hard of hearing.

Are there any other Pioneer Generation benefits that we’ve missed out? Let us know.

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Peter Lin

I am the poster boy for reinventing one's self. I've been a broadcast journalist, technical writer, banking customer service officer and a Catholic friar. My life experiences have made me the most cynical idealist you'll ever meet, which is why I'm also the co-founder of a local pop culture website. I believe ignorance is not bliss, and that money is the root of all evil only if you allow it to be.