Credit Cards

Amex KrisFlyer Credit Card – MoneySmart Review 2019

amex krisflyer credit card

Joanne Poh

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The Amex KrisFlyer Credit Card is one of the 3 air miles credit cards in Singapore that are officially co-branded with Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer. It’s super easy to use since miles you earn are credited directly into your KrisFlyer account.

Though its base earn rates are far from spectacular, the Amex KrisFlyer Credit Card has a really good welcome miles bonus: Up to 35,500 miles with $10,000 spent in the first 6 months.

So, is your hunt for the perfect air miles credit card over? Let’s see if it’s worth applying for:

 

Amex KrisFlyer Credit Card terms & conditions

American Express Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Credit Card
Annual fee & waiver $176.55 (waived for 1 year)
Supplementary annual fee $53.50
Interest free period 22 days
Annual interest rate 25.90%
Late payment fee $60
Minimum monthly repayment 3% or $50, whichever is higher
Foreign currency transaction fee 2.5%
Cash advance transaction fee 5%
Overlimit fee
Minimum income $30,000 (Singaporean) / $60,000 (non-Singaporean)
Card association American Express
Wireless payment Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google Pay

 

How does the Amex KrisFlyer Credit Card work?

The Amex KrisFlyer Credit Card lets you earn miles when you spend money. Unlike most other credit cards, you earn them in KrisFlyer miles rather than bank rewards points, which helps you save on conversion fees and hassle.

Now, let’s be honest. The miles accrual rate for this card is quite poor. Here’s a look at the earn rates:

Type of expenditure Earn rate
Local spending $1 = 1.1 miles
Overseas spending (Jun & Dec only) $1 = 2 miles
Singapore Airlines, SilkAir & KrisShop $1 = 2 miles
Grab $1 = 3.1 miles (up to $200 per month)
Starbucks, McDonald’s & other selected merchants $1 = 3.1 miles (up to $200 per month)

But the Amex KrisFlyer card’s main advantage is that it offers a rather easy way to earn bonus miles. Simply sign up just before you make a big purchase ($1,500, $5,000 or $10,000) and you can get a big bunch of miles without the tedium of earning them the normal way:

Minimum spend Period KrisFlyer miles earned
First $1,500 (new cardmembers only) First 3 months 11,150 miles
Next $3,000 First 3 months 7,500 miles + 3,850 miles (based on $1 = 1.1 miles) = 11,350 miles
Next $5,000 4th to 6th months 7,500 miles + 5,500 miles (based on $1 = 1.1 miles) = 13,000 miles
TOTAL 35,500 miles

Note: The above rates are only if you sign up for the Amex KrisFlyer through MoneySmart. If you sign up via Amex’s own website, you can only get 31,000 miles max.

You can also earn bonus miles for getting supplementary cards (1,500 miles per supp card, up to 2 cards) and referring friends (5,000 miles per friend referral). Your friend also receives 5,000 miles upon spend of $50 in the first 3 months of card membership.

 

Current Amex KrisFlyer Card promotions

The regular earn rates on the Amex KrisFlyer card may not be much to shout about, but American Express often runs promotions that can really, well, improve the mileage of this card.

The most competitive one right now – which Amex released in the wake of the UOB KrisFlyer credit card – is 3.1 KrisFlyer miles per $1 on selected merchants.

  • Coffee: Starbucks, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf
  • Fast Food: McDonald’s, Subway
  • Food Delivery: Deliveroo, Foodpanda
  • Pharmacy: Unity, and Watsons
  • Entertainment: SISTIC

Unfortunately, it’s capped at $200 of spending a month, which rather limits how many more miles you can earn. Valid till 31 Mar 2020.

Another promo: Earn 5.1 KrisFlyer miles per $1 (i.e. 4 bonus miles) with Apple Pay, Android Pay or Samsung Pay. You have to be one of the first 15,000 to register for the promotion and it’s good for up to $300 of spending. Valid till 15 June 2019.

If you haven’t signed up yet, you can get $20 CapitaLand vouchers when you apply and receive approval for your new American Express card. Choose the MyInfo option on the application form and successfully use MyInfo to pre-fill the form. Valid until 30 June 2019.

 

Who should use the Amex KrisFlyer Credit Card?

The Amex KrisFlyer Credit Card is ideal for beginner miles collectors because it’s so easy to use.

Since your miles are credited directly into your KrisFlyer account, you don’t need to consolidate your spending to try to earn enough points to convert into miles. There’s also no futzing with weird points systems, rewards catalogues, conversion fees and other terms and conditions.

But honestly, even if you’re already regularly using another credit card to earn miles, you might still want to sign up as long as you’re expecting big expenses in the coming 6 months. This spending requirement isn’t too difficult to fulfil if you sign up for this card just before getting hitched, having a kid, buying big ticket items for your home etc.

By the way, if you’re in the $50,000 p.a. income bracket, the Amex KrisFlyer card has a “big brother”, the Amex KrisFlyer Ascend Credit Card. It has a similar bonus miles structure for a larger expenditure and more travel perks.

 

Alternatives to the Amex KrisFlyer Credit Card

These days, many air miles cards are vying for the same target group of users – young working adults who can’t wait to start earning miles. Let’s compare the Amex KrisFlyer Credit Card with some similar cards:

UOB KrisFlyer Card A new card from UOB that also lets you earn KrisFlyer miles directly, this one offers a generous 3 miles per $1 spent on travel, dining, online shopping, and transport, which is what most Singaporeans spend a ton on anyway. The trouble is that you need to spend $500 on SQ or Scoot a year, and miles are only credited after a year, which is a bit of a pain.

Amex KrisFlyer Ascend – The 3rd credit card that lets you earn KrisFlyer miles directly without conversion, this card is very similar to the Amex KrisFlyer, just that it has a slightly better local earn rate ($1 = 1.2 miles) and a bigger welcome bonus. There’s a higher income requirement and annual fee, but in exchange you do get perks like a free hotel stay and airport lounge passes.

DBS Altitude Card – Similar entry level miles card, but with average earn rates. You don’t get welcome miles for spending a lot, but there’s a decent bonus category for online travel bookings. DBS miles also don’t expire, which makes this card good for those who are not earning or spending a lot of money and have to play the long game.

As you can see, the Amex KrisFlyer Credit Card may not offer the best regular earn rates, but it’s still pretty much the best entry level miles card in town for earning bonus miles on upcoming large expenses.

American Express Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Credit Card

American Express Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Credit Card


Card Benefits

    • 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
    • S$1 = 1.1 KrisFlyer miles (Local)
    • S$1 = 2 KrisFlyer miles (foreign currency spent Overseas) during June and December and for purchases made at singaporeair.com, silkair.com KrisShop and SilkAir SkyShop, both in-flight and online
    • S$1 = 3.1 KrisFlyer miles for Grab and Uber rides, capped at S$200 per month
    • Receive bonus 7,000 bonus KrisFlyer miles when you first charge to your card
    • Get an additional 7,500 bonus KrisFlyer miles when you spend S$2,500 within 3 months of card approval
    • Get S$150 cashback for use on your next purchase on singaporeair.com when you spend S$12,000 on your Card from now till 30 June 2018
    • Enjoy free Travel Inconvenience & Travel Accident Benefits of up to S$350,000 when you purchase your travel tickets with you card

    Which credit cards have you applied for just to enjoy their sign-up bonus miles? Tell us in the comments!

     

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    Joanne Poh

    In my previous life, I was a property lawyer who spent most of my time struggling to get out of bed or stuck in peak hour traffic. These days, as a freelance commercial writer, I work in bed, on the beach, in parks and at cafes, all while being really frugal. I like helping other people save money so they can stop living lives they don't like.