Credit Cards

DBS Visa Debit Card – MoneySmart Review 2018

DBS visa debit card - moneysmart review 2018

Joanne Poh



Haven’t used a debit card since you were too young and poor to apply for a credit card? The DBS Visa Debit Card just might change that. That’s because it claims to offer up to 10% cashback – a cashback rate that’s pretty much unheard of in the realm of debit cards (and most credit cards).

But is it too good to be true? Read the low down on this DBS debit card before you sign up.


DBS Visa Debit Card terms & conditions

DBS Visa Debit Card
Minimum age 16 years old
Eligibilty Have POSB Savings Account, DBS Savings Plus Account, DBS Autosave Account or DBS Current Account
NETS transaction limit $5,000 (daily)
ATM withdrawal limit $3,000 (daily)
Debit card transaction limit $2,000 (daily)
Foreign currency transaction fee 3.25%
Dynamic currency conversion fee 2.8%
Fee for SGD transactions processed outside Singapore 2.8%
Overseas ATM withdrawal fee 3.25% + $2 or $5 service charge
Max. liability for unauthorised transactions $100
Card association Visa
Wireless payment Visa payWave


Benefits of using the DBS Visa Debit Card

Even if you’re rolling in enough dough to get any credit card you want, you might still be tempted to sign up for a DBS debit card to take advantage of DBS promotions which give you big fat cash rebates when you limit your cash withdrawals.

For a start, DBS is offering a sweet $30 cashback to those who sign up for one of their debit cards. What’s the catch, you ask? There are a few…

  • The big, big catch is that you cannot withdraw cash from your POSB/DBS accounts for 3 months. Maybe it’s time to open a savings account with another bank?
  • You need to spend at least $300 in the first month. However, it can be on regular Visa purchases online or offline – not just on contactless payment (see below).
  • The offer expires 30 Sep 2018.

Another DBS promotion to check out is the stupidly-named but actually legit Beep Beep Kaching promo. It’s recently been extended to 30 Sep 2018.

It lets you get 10% cashback when you use your debit card to make contactless payment. Just look for the little Visa Paywave logo (it looks like a Wifi logo on its side) on payment terminals when you’re out shopping or dining – lots of merchants offer it.

  • You must not withdraw cash from your POSB/DBS accounts. But you can get cash from Giant, Cold Storage, Sheng Siong, 7-Eleven or one of the other POSB Cashpoints around town – it doesn’t count as a “cash withdrawal”.
  • You can’t get cashback for contactless transactions above $200.
  • There’s a minimum spend of $400 a month to qualify for cashback. The $400 doesn’t have to be all contactless payment; other eligible expenses are counted.
  • There’s also a cashback cap of $50 per month, meaning you can only spend $500 on contactless payment each month.

Even after the Beep Beep Kaching promotion ends, the DBS Visa Debit Card STILL gives you 5% cashback when you make contactless payment, up to $200 per transaction.

This includes Visa Paywave as well as Apple Pay, Samsung Pay or Google Pay. Sadly, the rebate is not valid for online transactions and normal signature-based payment. The same minimum monthly spend of $400 and cashback cap of $50 apply.

And this time, you don’t have to forgo cash – you can still get the rebate as long as your cash withdrawals are S$400 and below in the same month.

Bonus overseas perks of the DBS Visa Debit Card

The DBS Visa Debit Card can be linked to most POSB/DBS accounts, but to really maximise your perks you should link it to the DBS Multi-Currency Account, which lets you bank in 11 foreign currencies with no fees. Note that there’s a minimum balance of $3,000, though.

If you make the DBS Visa Debit Card the primarily linked card for this account, you can pay for your foreign currency purchases with no foreign exchange fees.

From now till 31 Aug 2018, you can get 5% cashback on foreign currency spending including online purchases. You need to be one of the first 5,000 to register in the promotion on the DBS Lifestyle mobile app.

There’s also a minimum spend of $500/month in foreign currency spend, and cashback is capped at $30/month.


Who should use the DBS Visa Debit Card?

For a start, just about anyone can get hold of this card because it’s a debit card, i.e. there’s no minimum income and no annual fee. Yay! If you don’t qualify for a credit card (e.g. you’re still a student), this is hands down one of the best debit cards in Singapore you could be using right now.

But of course, it also means the funds are debited directly. You definitely cannot spend beyond your means. Think twice about getting this card if you’re planning for large purchases or if you have really poor self-control.

However, it works well as a day-to-day expenses card as there’s a generous bonus cashback on contactless payment. You probably use this payment method more than you think — when you’re at the supermarket and you tap your card at the Visa payWave machine, you’re making a contactless payment that would be eligible for rebates.

Don’t forget that you will need to spend at least $400 in a month to qualify for the cashback.

There’s also the “troublesome factor”. If you aren’t an existing POSB or DBS account holder, or if you don’t want to have to limit cash withdrawals from your account, you’ll have to sign up for a new savings or current account, which is an added inconvenience.

If you are a POSB or DBS account holder and are using a plain vanilla ATM or debit card, it wouldn’t hurt to swap it for the DBS Visa Debit Card.


Are there other cashback cards for contactless payments?

While DBS Visa Debit Card is one of the most generous debit cards out there when it comes to cashback, there are many credit cards that reward you similarly when you make contactless payments, such as the following:

DBS Live Fresh Card – Get 5% on Visa PayWave transactions linked with Apple, Samsung or Google Pay. The card also gives you 5% cashback on online shopping. Note, however, that the minimum spending requirement is a higher $600 a month, and there is a $20 a month cap on Visa PayWave rebates.

UOB Delight Card – Get 3% rebate on contactless transactions, including Visa PayWave, NETS FlashPay Auto Top-Ups for public transport, taxis and car park charges. The minimum spending requirement is the same as DBS Visa Debit’s, at $400, but the range of eligible contactless payments is wider.

BOC Family Card – This card is a nice complement to the DBS Visa Debit Card as it gives you 5% for NETS FlashPay Auto Top-Ups (first four top-ups), which doesn’t qualify for DBS Visa Debit’s 5% rebates. The minimum spending requirement of $700 is much higher, but you can also get cashback on a bunch of other stuff like supermarkets, hospital bills and telco bills.

Do you have the DBS Visa Debit Card? Share your reviews 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.