4 Ways to Decide Which Credit Card Works Best for Your Year-End Holiday

4 Ways to Decide Which Credit Card Works Best for Your Year-End Holiday

Can you believe it? There are only 7 more weeks left to the end of this crazy rollercoaster year, and I for one cannot wait to end the year on a good note, and preferably on an actual rollercoaster. And no, I don’t mean the ones in Sentosa. I’m thinking somewhere much, much further away. But if you haven’t started planning your overseas trip, like me, here are some tips on how the right credit card can help you decide where to go by maximising its benefits.

 

1. Use a credit card that rewards you when making your flight booking

Gone are the days where the preferred way to travel was to book a package with an agency. More and more, the ability to customise your flights and accommodation (while saving money in the process!) has become easier and more convenient via sites like Expedia.

But don’t just use any random credit card when making your booking. Here are some credit cards that reward you for making your travel plans:

The UOB PRVI Miles Card earns you 6 Miles for every $1 spent on airline bookings on Expedia and the bank’s own site, UOB Travel. You’ll even get a welcome bonus of 12,000 miles if your spending amounts to $4,000 within the first 2 months your card gets approved. That’s rather easy to achieve considering how quickly your money disappears when you’re travelling to countries further than Thailand.

UOB logo
Bank Promo
High Miles Earn Rate
Local Spend
S$1 = 1.4 Miles
Overseas Spend
S$1 = 2.4 Miles
Selected Online Hotel and Flight bookings
S$1 = 6 Miles
Bank Promo: Receive S$150 cash credit when you apply! Valid till 30 Sep 2020.

The DBS Altitude Card earns you 3 Miles for every $1 spend on online airline bookings, regardless of airline.

DBS logo
Online Promo
Earn Miles That Never Expire
Local Spend
S$1 = 1.2 Miles
Overseas Spend
S$1 = 2 Miles
Min. Spend
S$0
Online Promo: <div><!--block-->Get S$200 Cashback with no minimum spend! Use the promo code "<strong>DBSFLASH"</strong> when you apply.</div> Valid till 05 Oct 2020.

Some credit cards reward you for flying with a specific airline. For example:

The American Express Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Ascend Credit Card allows you to earn 2 Miles per $1 spent flying (surprise, surprise) Singapore Airlines or SilkAir.

American Express logo
MoneySmart Exclusive
Convenience & Perks for Frequent Flyers
Local Spend
S$1 = 1.2 Miles
Overseas Spend
S$1 = 2 Miles
Grab rides
S$1 = 3.2 Miles
MoneySmart Exclusive: <div>Get an illy x7.1 Coffee Machine when you get your card approved.</div> Valid till 18 Oct 2020.

If you’re not the type to get bitten by the travel bug and therefore don’t like earning miles that you’ll probably not be able to use, consider earning cashback rebates instead.

The other alternative then is the American Express True Cashback Card, which earns a flat 1.5% cashback rebate. However, since there’s no cashback cap and no minimum spend, it’s perfect for large travel transactions.

American Express logo
MoneySmart Exclusive
Unlimited Cashback
Cash Back on All Spend
1.5%
Cash Back Cap
Unlimited
Min. Spend per month
S$0
MoneySmart Exclusive: Get $120 cash via PayNow when you apply and spend on your card! Valid till 18 Oct 2020.

 

2. Use a credit card that rewards you when making your hotel booking

While Expedia allows you to book both your flights and hotel in the same website, other sites like Agoda are exclusively for hotel and resort bookings. Sure, it may be a little inconvenient to book your hotel separately from your flights, but depending on your credit card, this might end up rewarding you more. Here are some examples:

Citibank logo
MoneySmart Exclusive
Earn Miles That Don't Expire
Local Spend
S$1 = Up to 1.2 Miles
All Foreign Currency Spend including Retail and Online
S$1 = 2 Miles
Selected Online Hotel Bookings
S$1 = Up to 10 Miles
MoneySmart Exclusive: <div>Get a <strong>Sony WH-1000XM4 Wireless Noise-Cancelling Headphones</strong> worth $549 when you apply and spend on your card! Fill in the redemption form after the application to redeem. T&amp;Cs apply.</div> Valid till 30 Sep 2020.

The Citi PremierMiles Card lets you earn 10 Miles per $1 spent on hotel booking site Kaligo.com till the end of December.

Citibank logo
MoneySmart Exclusive
Earn Miles That Don't Expire
Local Spend
S$1 = Up to 1.2 Miles
All Foreign Currency Spend including Retail and Online
S$1 = 2 Miles
Selected Online Hotel Bookings
S$1 = Up to 10 Miles
MoneySmart Exclusive: <div>Get a <strong>Sony WH-1000XM4 Wireless Noise-Cancelling Headphones</strong> worth $549 when you apply and spend on your card! Fill in the redemption form after the application to redeem. T&amp;Cs apply.</div> Valid till 30 Sep 2020.

The UOB PRVI Miles Card earns you 10 Miles for every $1 spent on Kaligo, and 6 Miles for every $1 spent on hotels on Expedia and Agoda. If you’re a visa cardmember, you’ll also enjoy VIP privileges such as automatic room upgrades etc, at over 900 prestigious hotels like Mandarin Oriental and Park Hyatt.

UOB logo
Bank Promo
High Miles Earn Rate
Local Spend
S$1 = 1.4 Miles
Overseas Spend
S$1 = 2.4 Miles
Selected Online Hotel and Flight bookings
S$1 = 6 Miles
Bank Promo: Receive S$150 cash credit when you apply! Valid till 30 Sep 2020.

The DBS Altitude Card earns you 13 Miles for every $1 spent on Kaligo, and 3 Miles for every $1 spend on online hotel bookings, including Agoda and Expedia and even Airbnb!

DBS logo
Online Promo
Earn Miles That Never Expire
Local Spend
S$1 = 1.2 Miles
Overseas Spend
S$1 = 2 Miles
Min. Spend
S$0
Online Promo: <div><!--block-->Get S$200 Cashback with no minimum spend! Use the promo code "<strong>DBSFLASH"</strong> when you apply.</div> Valid till 05 Oct 2020.

 

3. Use a credit card that rewards you for spending overseas

Several of the credit cards mentioned above earn you air miles at a faster rate for overseas spending:

DBS logo
Online Promo
Earn Miles That Never Expire
Local Spend
S$1 = 1.2 Miles
Overseas Spend
S$1 = 2 Miles
Min. Spend
S$0
Online Promo: <div><!--block-->Get S$200 Cashback with no minimum spend! Use the promo code "<strong>DBSFLASH"</strong> when you apply.</div> Valid till 05 Oct 2020.

The DBS Altitude Card currently has a promotion, earning you 2 Miles per $1 spent overseas. If your overseas spend falls between $2,500 to $5,000, they’ll reward you with an extra 2 bonus miles per $1. That’s 4 miles per $1 spent overseas! Note that there is a cap of 2,000 per calendar month.

DBS logo
Online Promo
Earn Miles That Never Expire
Local Spend
S$1 = 1.2 Miles
Overseas Spend
S$1 = 2 Miles
Min. Spend
S$0
Online Promo: <div><!--block-->Get S$200 Cashback with no minimum spend! Use the promo code "<strong>DBSFLASH"</strong> when you apply.</div> Valid till 05 Oct 2020.

The UOB PRVI Miles Card earns 2.4 Miles per $1 spent overseas. You’ll also get a $45 rebate off your limousine ride to Changi Airport when you charge $1,000 of your holiday expenditure to the card.

UOB logo
Bank Promo
High Miles Earn Rate
Local Spend
S$1 = 1.4 Miles
Overseas Spend
S$1 = 2.4 Miles
Selected Online Hotel and Flight bookings
S$1 = 6 Miles
Bank Promo: Receive S$150 cash credit when you apply! Valid till 30 Sep 2020.

Of course, when using your credit card overseas, you should always take the necessary precautions. Ensure that your bank is aware of your travel plans so that they can allow your card to be used overseas, and always be on the watch for fraudulent transactions.

Another thing to look out for would be the additional charges that you’ll incur when using a credit card overseas. As a rule, you should charge the card in a foreign currency and reject any option to pay in Singapore dollars.

4. Take advantage of your credit card to enjoy airport lounge access

Since you’re already planning to use your credit card to enjoy your travel, why not enjoy airport lounge access all over the world as well? That’s right. By signing up for some credit cards, you will be eligible for Priority Pass membership, which gives you access to over 700 VIP lounges in hundreds of cities worldwide.