Credit Cards

3 Best Cash Back Credit Cards in Singapore

cashback credit card

Eugenia Liew

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When it comes to comparing plastic, cashback is the most popular kind of credit card in Singapore. But which is the best cashback credit card in Singapore?

There is no clear-cut, universal “best” credit card. To me, the best credit card is one that suits your lifestyle, not the other way around. I don’t believe in micromanaging your spending and obsessing over how you can game the system to maximise your cash rebates – it’s too tedious and disruptive.

So yes, you could easily pick out other cashback credit cards with seemingly high rebates, but if it’s not here, I probably didn’t include it because it is quite difficult to qualify for the maximum cashback.

Credit card Cashback Restrictions
American Express True Cashback Card 3% for the first 3 months up to $5,000

1.5% thereafter

None
BOC Family Card 10% on dining, cinemas

5% online, groceries, hospital, NETS FlashPay

Min. spend $700

Capped at $30 for dining & cinema / $30 for online / $40 for all else

Citi SMRT Card 4.7% on groceries (min. $50 transaction), movies, fast food, coffee chains

2.7% online

1.7% on EZ-Link

+0.3% if you hit min. spend $300

No min. spend

Capped at $600 yearly

 

American Express True Cashback Card – cash rebates for big expenses

American Express True Cashback Card

American Express True Cashback Card


Card Benefits

  • MoneySmart Exclusive - Bonus S$80 Cash
  • Apply through MoneySmart from 22 Mar - 19 Apr 2018 to get S$100 worth of Grab OR NTUC Vouchers. Application must be approved by 3 May 2018. Submit your (i)Contact Details and (ii)14-digit Reference Number on the Thank You Page upon completion at this link before 19 April 2018. T&Cs
  • 1.5% Cashback on any purchase you make, anytime
  • 3% Cashback for the first 6 months up to $5000 spend
  • Enjoy first year fee waiver
  • Eligible for use with Apple Pay

There are several frontrunners in the unlimited cashback category, namely American Express True Cashback Card, Standard Chartered Unlimited Cashback Card and the Maybank FC Barcelona Visa Signature Card.

The standard cash rebate for the American Express True Cashback Card and Standard Chartered Unlimited Cashback Card are the same, 1.5% with no minimum spend and no cap.

Maybank FC Barcelona Visa Signature Card is marginally higher (1.6%), but the reason why the Amex card has an edge is because you can earn 3% for the first $5,000 you spend (within first 6 months).

That’s perfect since most people get unlimited cashback cards when they’re anticipating big ticket purchases that’ll burst other credit cards’ cashback caps. If you’re really going to be spending – think renovations and wedding banquets – you can always swipe your main credit card until you’ve met all the cashback caps before switching to your unlimited cashback card.

  • Singaporean Minimum Income: $30,000 per year
  • Non-Singaporean Minimum Income: $60,000 per year
  • Principal Annual Fee: $171.20 per year
  • Supplementary Annual Fee: $85.60 per year
  • Fee Waiver: 1 year fee waiver for Principal card, perpetual fee waiver for first 2 supplementary cards
  • Annual Interest Rate: 25.90%

 

BOC Family Card – best cashback card for everyday use

I know, the Bank of China Family Card isn’t the first “best cashback credit card” that comes to mind, but hear me out. Effective April 2018, the BOC Family Card’s cashback programme got an upgrade.

For a start, rebates for dining (10%) and telco bills (5%) are some of the highest on the market for these categories.

It’s the only credit card on this list with a minimum spend of $700 per month. But that’s still lower than its biggest competitor, the Citi Cash Back Card.

The total cashback cap is $100, one of the highest on the market as well. Although there are split caps on the different categories – $30 for dining and movies, $30 for online spend and $40 for everything else – I find the cashback cap amounts reasonable.

This means you can spend up to $300 a month on dining/movies, $600 on online shopping, and up to $800 on the 5% bonus categories (groceries, hospital bills, NETS FlashPay auto top-up, telco bills and selected merchants).

All in all, the BOC Family Card a great all-purpose cashback credit card to have. The rebates are competitive, the cashback caps are reasonable, and best of all, the minimum spend is manageable.

Only thing to note is that the BOC Family Card has no bonus rebates for petrol, which may be a big deal for those who drive daily. If that’s the case, you can consider the Citi Cash Back Card which offers up to 20.88% at Esso and Shell (8% for all other petrol stations).

  • Singaporean Minimum Income: $30,000 per year
  • Non-Singaporean Minimum Income: $60,000 per year
  • Principal Annual Fee: $190 per year
  • Supplementary Annual Fee: $95 per year
  • Fee Waiver: First year free for Principal and Supplementary cards
  • Annual Interest Rate: 28.88%

 

Citi SMRT Card – best cashback card with no minimum spend

Citibank SMRT Card

Citibank SMRT Card


Card Benefits

    • Up to 5% savings on on Groceries. 4.7% (For transactions above $50. If transaction is $50 and below, 2.7% awarded instead) + 0.3% (If monthly card spend is at least $300)Up to 5% savings on Fast Food, Movies & Coffee. 4.7% + 0.3% (if monthly card spend is at least $300)
    • Up to 3% savings on Online Shopping. 2.7% + 0.3% (If monthly card spend is at least $300)
    • Up to 2% savings on Health & Beauty. 1.7% + 0.3% (If monthly card spend is at least $300). Including GNC, Guardian, Nature's Farm, NTUC Unity Healthcare & Watson's
    • Up to 2% EZ-Reload Auto Top-up. 0.3% + 1.7% (If top-up more than $30. If $30 or less, 0.7% awarded instead)
    • Up to 5% savings for the following with monthly spend of at least $300. 5% at POPULAR Bookstores and Toys"R"Us, 5% at selected Town Councils for Service and Conservancy Charges, 1% savings on Telecommunication bills, 1% on selected Insurance providers, 1% on SPH Newspaper Subscriptions. If monthly spend is less than $300, SMRT$ earn rate will be 0.3% less.Savings awarded in SMRT$. 1 SMRT$ = S$1 of vouchers. Vouchers available for Giant, Sheng Siong, SMRT, Popular, Watsons, Shaw Theatres
    • 0.3% awarded on all other spend categories

    If you struggle to hit the minimum spend of other cashback cards, I recommend the Citi SMRT Card for your general purchases. The cash rebates are decent and cover all the essential categories – transport, food, groceries and online shopping.

    The Citi SMRT Card’s cash rebate (4.7% on groceries, movies and fastfood + 2.7% on online shopping + 1.7% on EZ-reload, health and beauty) is slightly lower than most cards, but is already considered very competitive for one without a minimum spend.

    The cashback cap is $600 per year, which is quite generous considering the rebates. If you reach the cap early, you can always just swipe another card since there’s no minimum spend. Plus, it doesn’t hurt to get a bonus 0.3% cashback if you spend at least $300.

    You should also use the Citi SMRT Card as your EZ-Link card. You can earn rebates without any transaction fees. Just remember to change the default $30 auto reload amount to $40 or $50 to get the maximum rebate of 1.7% (instead of 0.7%).

    • Singaporean Minimum Income: $30,000 per year
    • Non-Singaporean Minimum Income: $42,000 per year
    • Principal Annual Fee: $193
    • Supplementary Annual Fee: $96.30
    • Fee Waiver: 2 years fee waiver
    • Annual Interest Rate: 26.9%

     

    Got a better cashback credit card to recommend? Share it with us in the comments below!

     

    Want to see more of the best cashback credit cards in 2018? Check out this article here:

    The Best Cashback Credit Cards in Singapore 2018

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    Eugenia Liew

    I’m a 90s millennial who’s starting to realise that #adulting is more expensive than it seems on Instagram. When I’m not writing for MoneySmart, I’m usually playing with drain-dwelling stray cats or shopping at Sephora.