Credit Cards

10 Best Credit Cards for Dining in Singapore — Miles, Cashback, Buffet Promotions & More

Amex Love Dining & More - 8 Best Credit Cards for Dining in Singapore (2019)

Unlike some credit card comparison websites, I’m not going to start this article with platitudes about how eating is a popular activity among Singaporeans, or how dining is a pleasant way to obtain essential vitamins and minerals.

Instead, let’s just acknowledge that I need to eat, you need to eat, so let’s find some ways to get rewarded for something we do over 1,000 times a year.

 

10 best credit cards for dining in Singapore (2019)

Credit card Dining benefits Monthly expenditure cap*
UOB Lady’s Card $1 = 4 miles $1,000
Maybank Horizon Card $1 = 3.2 miles $4,285
UOB KrisFlyer Credit Card $1 = 3 miles No cap
HSBC Revolution Card $1 = 2 miles No cap
BOC Family Card 10% cashback $250
Maybank Family & Friends Card 8% or 5% cashback $1,000
Citi Cash Back Card 8% cashback $322
UOB YOLO Card 8% weekend / 3% weekday cashback $750 (based on 8%)
OCBC 365 Card 6% cashback $1,333
Amex Platinum Card Up to 50% off under Love Dining programme No cap

* Note: I included the monthly dining expenditure cap, which is based on the maximum bonus miles/points or cashback you can get per month. This is important because restaurant bills can blow up real fast. If you frequent Saizeriya and Pepper Lunch, you might be okay with a $250 cap, but it won’t work for someone who’s sampled the entire wine list at Les Amis. Your mileage may vary.

 

Best miles cards for dining — UOB Lady’s Card, Maybank Horizon Card, UOB KrisFlyer Credit Card

Air miles card Dining benefits Monthly expenditure cap
UOB Lady’s Card $1 = 4 miles $1,000
Maybank Horizon Card $1 = 3.2 miles (min. spend $300) $4,285
UOB KrisFlyer Credit Card $1 = 3 miles (must spend $500/year on SQ/Scoot) No cap
HSBC Revolution Card $1 = 2 miles No cap

If dining is one of your main spending categories, I would strongly suggest using an air miles or rewards card rather than a cashback card.

As you’ll see later on, it takes just a little bit of spending to burst the cap on a cashback card, whereas with rewards and miles cards, there’s a much larger cap (and sometimes no cap at all). You have the freedom to dine out as much as you like and foot the bill for the whole table without worrying about maxing out your rebates.

UOB Lady's Card

UOB Lady's Card


Card Benefits

    • 5X UNI$ on your shopping (local & overseas)
    • UOB Lady's LuxePay Plan: 6 or 12-month installment plan with no interest or processing fees
    • Up to 10% SMART$ rebate at over 400 participating merchant outlets

    My pick for a dedicated dining credit card is the UOB Lady’s Card, providing you qualify for it, of course (“the men don’t get it”, as the tagline says).

    UOB has recently revamped this card, and you can now choose one category in which to get 4 miles per $1 spent. Given how much well-heeled Singaporeans spend at restaurants, picking the “Dining” category is an obvious winner. The downside is that it’s capped at $1,000 a month, so it’s not for those who pick up the tab for large groups.

    Maybank Horizon Visa Signature Card

    Maybank Horizon Visa Signature Card


    Card Benefits

      • Earn 3.2 air miles (8X TREATS Points) for every S$1 spent on selected dining merchants
      • Min spend: S$300/month
      • Capped at 30,000 Bonus TREATS Points per month
      • 1X TREATS Point with no minimum spend

      If that $1,000 cap is too restrictive, the Maybank Horizon Card and UOB KrisFlyer Credit Card are worthy options for miles chasers. Both come with conditions, though: The Maybank miles card has a monthly minimum spend of $300 and cap of $4K+, while the UOB KrisFlyer credit card requires you to spend at least $500 a year on SQ/Scoot flights.

       

      Best cashback cards for dining — Maybank Family & Friends, UOB YOLO Card, OCBC 365 Card

      Cashback credit card Dining benefits Minimum spend Monthly expenditure cap
      BOC Family Card 10% cashback $800 $250
      Maybank Family & Friends Card 8% or 5% cashback $800 or $500 (respectively) $1,000
      Citi Cash Back Card 8% cashback $888 $322
      UOB YOLO Card 8% weekend / 3% weekday cashback $600 $750 (based on 8%)
      OCBC 365 Card 6% cashback $800 $1,333

      Like I mentioned, the trouble with paying with a cashback card at restaurants is that you can hit the maximum rebate cap pretty quickly.

      Take the Citi Cash Back Card for example: Its dining rebate of 8% sounds awesome, but it’s capped at $25 a month, which means you can only spend ~$300 on food every month before running into the limit. Same goes for the BOC Family Card, which has an even lower cap of $250.

      Citi Cash Back Card

      Citi Cash Back Card


      Card Benefits

        • 8% cash back on your dining spends globally
        • 8% cash back also applicable for food delivery (including Deliveroo and foodpanda)
        • Exclusive dining deals with Citi Gourmet Pleasures at top restaurants such as Kuro Restaurant & Bar, Skyve Wine Bistro and more
        • Total min. retail spend of S$888/month, 8% cash back capped at S$25 per category
        • For retail spend less than S$888 and/or other retail spend categories, 0.25% cash back is awarded, no cap on 0.25% cash back earned

        Meanwhile, the Maybank Family & Friends Card, UOB YOLO and OCBC 365 cards have more reasonable terms & conditions.

        Maybank Family & Friends Card

        Maybank Family & Friends Card


        Card Benefits

          • Up to 8% cash rebate at selected merchants
          • Merchants include delivery services from foodpanda, KFC, McDonald's, and Pizza Hut
          • Get 0.3% cash rebate on all other spend with no cap on cash rebates

          Our current favourite cashback card for dining is the Maybank Family & Friends Card, which offers a 5% (min. spend $500) or 8% (min. spend $800) rebate across all eateries in Singapore and Malaysia. It’s possible to charge up to $1,000 to this card before hitting the cap.

          UOB YOLO Credit Card

          UOB YOLO Credit Card


          Card Benefits

            • 16%* cash rebate on weekend Dining, both local and overseas
            • Get up to 10% cashback at Hareloom Bistro Modern offers
            • 3% cash rebate on weekday Dining
            • 0.3% cash rebate on all other spend
            • Minimum spend of S$600 per statement month for 16% and 3% rebate, otherwise 0.3% rebate earned on all spend. Total rebate capped at S$60 per month

            The UOB YOLO Card has one of the lower minimum spending requirements of the bunch, and it lets you earn up to $60 a month in rebates. It’s best for those who mainly dine out on weekends as that’s when you get the higher 8% rebate. For weekend dining expenses, you can charge up to $750 before hitting the cap.

            OCBC 365 Credit Card

            OCBC 365 Credit Card


            Card Benefits

            • 6% cashback on local and overseas dining, everyday
            • 6% cashback on online food delivery e.g. Deliveroo and Foodpanda
            • Min. spend of $800/month, cap S$80/month

            The OCBC 365 Card has a higher minimum spend of $800, but it offers modest rebates in a variety of everyday categories (bills, groceries) as well as dining, so it’s a decent all-rounded cashback card for someone who likes his food, but also has other bills to pay.

             

            Amex Platinum Card — 50% off under Love Dining programme

            American Express Platinum Credit Card

            American Express Platinum Credit Card


            Card Benefits

              • Love Dining @ Restaurants: 50%, 35%, 15% savings when dining with 1 friend, 2 friends, and alone respectively
              • Enjoy savings at artfully curated restaurants and Singapore's finest hotels with Love Dining
              • Love Dining @ Hotels: Discounts applicable for groups up to 19 pax at Raffles Hotel Singapore, Shangri-La Hotel Singapore, The St. Regis and more
              • With Love Dining @ Hotels, receive a complimentary The Far Card Classic Membership
              • Eligible for use with Apple Pay

              Despite its hefty annual fee ($321) and higher-than-usual salary requirements ($50K), the Amex Platinum Card is still one of those credit cards that self-styled gourmands feel they must have.

              This credit card’s key benefit is the Love Dining programme, which gives you up to 50% off at fine wining and dining establishments (that you actually want to eat at).

              To put the discount in perspective, imagine that you and your best friend feel like pigging out at a buffet this weekend. Would you rather pay $33.80++ per head at Buffet Town or $30-odd (after splitting the $59++ Amex bill) at Oscar’s at Conrad Centennial? Seems like a no-brainer to go for the atas hotel buffet.

              Before you rush to sign up for this card, know that practically all credit cards give you 1-for-1 deals on hotel buffets too. I personally think that the Amex Platinum Card’s annual fee is only worth it if you are an extremely discerning diner – otherwise, most other credit cards offer very competitive dining promotions these days.

              Read our review of the Amex Platinum Card to decide if it’s worth it.

              Over to you — tell us which credit card do you use at restaurants and why?

               

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