UOB EVOL (Formerly YOLO) Credit Card — MoneySmart Review 2022

UOB EVOL (Formerly YOLO) Credit Card — MoneySmart Review 2022

Previously, the UOB YOLO Card was a cashback credit card with generous cash rebates of up to 8% on dining, entertainment, online shopping and travel — exactly what Singaporean millennials love to spend money on (and thereafter complain that we’re broke).

In June 2021, UOB dropped the name and revamped the credit card as the UOB EVOL Card. New name, new perks? By now, the UOB EVOL Card has been around for more than a year. Let’s take a look at UOB EVOL Card perks and see how it fares as a cashback credit card.

UOB logo
on Online and Mobile Contactless spend
Up to 8%
Cash Back Cap per month
Up to S$60
Min. Spend per month
S$600

Here’s what the card offers:

Contents

  1. UOB EVOL Card: Summary
  2. UOB EVOL Card Terms & Conditions
  3. UOB EVOL Card Cashback Benefits
  4. UOB EVOL Card Minimum Spend
  5. UOB EVOL Card Exclusions
  6. How do I maximise my UOB EVOL Card?
  7. Should I get the UOB EVOL Card?
  8. UOB EVOL Card Sign-Up Promotion
  9. Alternatives to the UOB EVOL Card

1. UOB EVOL Card: Summary

The UOB EVOL Card is a fuss-free cashback card. It offers you 8% cashback on bonus categories and 0.3% cashback on everything else that you swipe your card for.

It’s bonus categories, which are online spend and mobile contactless payments, include pretty much anything and everything that you purchase online and in-store with your mobile e-wallet. Grab, Shopee, McDelivery, Lazada…the list goes on.

It’s easy to use, so you should have no problem earning a bit of cash back at the end of the month for your avocado toast.

2. UOB EVOL Card Terms & Conditions

The UOB EVOL Card is a beginner-friendly cashback credit card. If you’re new to credit cards and didn’t already know this, even after your first year, you can call into UOB to request for an annual fee waiver. UOB customer service are generally easy to deal with. More savings for you, ka-ching!

Here’s what else you need to know:

UOB EVOL Card
Annual fee & waiver $192.60 (waived for 1 year)
Supplementary annual fee First supplementary card free
Interest free period 21 days
Annual interest rate 26.90%
Late payment fee $100
Minimum monthly repayment 3% or $50, whichever is higher
Foreign currency transaction fee 3.25%
Cash advance transaction fee 8%, min. fee $15
Overlimit fee $40
Minimum income $30,000 (Singaporean) / $40,000 (non-Singaporean)
Card association Visa
Wireless payment Visa payWave, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Android Pay, Mighty Pay

3. UOB EVOL Card Cashback Benefits

UOB EVOL Card’s cashback benefits are pretty straight forward:

Categories Cashback Rate  Cashback Cap
Online spend (dining, entertainment, shopping, fashion, Grab, hotels, etc.) 8% $20
Mobile contactless payments (Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google Pay, Fitbit Pay and Mighty Pay) 8% $20
All other spend (phone bills, gym membership, etc.) 0.3% $20

The UOB EVOL Card incentivises online spend and mobile contactless payments by offering 8% cashback in the two categories,  with all other spend earning 0.3% cashback. Lucky for you, the online spending category is pretty broadly categorised as any transaction made via the internet including in-app purchases that you make.

Mobile contactless payments, on the other hand, are payments you make with your mobile wallet at the physical store. But do take note, if you make an online payment with your Apple Pay, it will add to the online spend category instead of the mobile contactless payments category.

Pay close attention because when you’re using the UOB EVOL Card, these things matter. There’s a cashback cap of $20 for each category so you have to take note of how much you’re spending in each category.

So, how much do you have to spend in order earn the maximum cashback in the bonus categories you ask? In order to earn the maximum cashback of 8%, you’ll have to spend $250 on online spend and $250 on mobile contactless payments. This should earn you $40 cashback monthly from the bonus categories. You won’t earn extra cashback if you spend more than that.

However, here’s the catch. You will only qualify for the bonus cashback if you meet the UOB EVOL Card’s minimum spend requirements.

4. UOB EVOL Card Minimum Spend

The UOB EVOL Card has a minimum spend of $600 per month that you have to hit in order to qualify for the 8% cashback in the bonus categories. If you do not meet the minimum spend requirement you will only earn a measly 0.3% cashback on all your transactions for the month. Sob.

You don’t want to be that loser. We’ve done the math for you so you can earn the maximium cashback on a monthly spend of $600. Here’s how you qualify for the maximum cashback in the bonus categories AND hit the minimum card spend:

  • $250 on online spend
  • $250 on mobile contactless payments
  • $100 on all other transactions

Easy enough? If you do all of the above, you’ll earn a total of $20 + $20 + $0.30 = $40.30 cashback per month with the UOB EVOL Card.

Before you start whipping out your phone at stores and checking-out online, you need to make sure that these are qualifying transactions. Meaning, they actually add up to your minimum spend total.

5. UOB EVOL Card Exclusions

The UOB EVOL Card is a pretty lenient card when it comes to exclusions but these are some of the key exclusions you should keep in mind.

  • Hospital bills
  • Utility bills
  • Parking fees
  • Insurance payments
  • School fees
  • Fine payments
  • Grab mobile wallet top-up
  • ShopeePay wallet top-up
  • Interest, fees, and charges to a bank
  • Tax payments
  • Government services
  • Shell and SPC petrol station transactions
  • Transactions at UOB$ merchants where UOB$ are issued

Most of the exclusions like hospital bills, school fees, and government-related services are pretty standard. If you’re a car owner, do note that you can’t earn any cashback when you fill up your tank at Shell and SPC petrol stations.

That aside, an unusual suspect on the list of exclusions is all transactions at UOB$ merchants.

If you’re unacquainted with the UOB$ programme, its designed for UOB card holders to earn instant cashback all year round for every transaction made at participating merchants. The list of participating merchants is a pretty extensive list that spans across dining, groceries, retail, travel and entertainment. But here are some of the more popular merchants:

  • Cold Storage
  • Giant
  • BreadTalk
  • CHICHA San Chen
  • Mr Coconut
  • bYSI
  • Guardian
  • Cathay Cineplexes
  • Starbucks (UOB$ Cashback coming soon)
  • Miniso

You can find the full list of merchants under the UOB$ Programme here.

6. How do I maximise my UOB EVOL Card?

The UOB EVOL Card is a great everyday card if you like fuss-free cash rebates. As we’ve warned earlier, you need to watch out for the split caps ($20 in each category), which can cramp your style.

Therefore, it’s best to pair this credit card with at least one other card as a backup, in case you need to spend above the usual amount that month — like if you’re spending extra on your year-end vacay.

For these one-off expenses, we like using a low-maintenance unlimited cashback credit card as these have no minimum spending requirements or caps.

Citibank logo
Cash Back on Eligible Spend
1.6%
Min. Spend per month
S$0
Cash Back Cap
Unlimited
Standard Chartered logo
MoneySmart Exclusive
Cash Back on eligible spend
Up to 1.5%
Min. Spend per month
S$0
Cash Back Cap
Unlimited
MoneySmart Exclusive:

Apply and spend S$250 to get an Apple AirPods Gen 3 (worth S$269) or Nintendo Switch Lite (worth S$279) or S$250 Cash via PayNow. T&Cs apply.

Valid until 30 Sep 2022

7. Should I get the UOB EVOL Card?

The UOB EVOL Card is best for young, digitally savvy Singaporeans who buy everything online and only use Apple Pay outside.

The card’s cashback rates on these categories are very generous. You’ll be hard-pressed to find many other credit cards that offer a 8% cash rebate on online spending AND mobile contactless spending.

We like that the categories are straightforward, so you don’t need to worry too much about merchant category codes.

What’s more, the minimum spending requirement of $600 a month isn’t too onerous. Some other credit cards require you to spend $800 a month, which can be a stretch.

However, if you’re the sort of person who spends significantly more than $600 a month, you’ll probably find it way too easy to burst the cap on this card.

8. UOB EVOL Card Sign-Up Promotion

If you’re convinced that the UOB EVOL Card is the one for you and you’re ready to sign-up, this might be of interest to you. If you’re amongst the first 100 applicants in August or September to sign-up for the UOB EVOL Card, stand a chance to win a Scoot voucher worth $480. Here’s how to qualify:

  • You must be new to UOB credit cards (or cancelled your last one at least a year ago)
  • Spend at least $1,000 in eligible transactions each month consecutively for 3 months within 90 days of card approval
  • SMS EVOLGIFT <space> Last 4 alphanumeric characters of your NRIC to 77862
  • Promotion ends 30 September 2022

Fancy a free-trip to Bali? Try your luck!

9. Alternatives to the UOB EVOL Card

With its simplified cashback structure and bonus rebates for online and contactless spending, the UOB EVOL Card is a dead ringer for two other credit cards on the market.

So before you sign up, check out the competition:

DBS logo
Online & Visa Contactless Spend
Cashback on Online & Visa Contactless Spend
Up to 5%
Cashback cap
Up to S$75
Min. Spend per month
S$600

DBS Live Fresh Card — This card is very similar to but less generous than the UOB EVOL Card, offering only 5% cash back on online and contactless payment. You’re also subject to a minimum monthly spend of $600, and the cashback caps are similarly split into $20 per category. The UOB EVOL Card offers a better deal.

OCBC logo
Cash Back on Online Spend
6%
Cash Back Cap per month
S$75
Min. Total Spend per month
S$600

OCBC Frank Credit Card — With the same minimum spending requirement as the others, the OCBC Frank card seems less generous as it offers only 6% rebates on online and contactless spending. However, its cashback cap is $25 per category, higher than the UOB EVOL Card’s $20.

Chose the UOB EVOL Card if you spend about $600 a month online and on contactless payments. If you spend $800 or more, you might want to opt for the OCBC Frank Card for the higher rebate cap.

UOB logo
on Online and Mobile Contactless spend
Up to 8%
Cash Back Cap per month
Up to S$60
Min. Spend per month
S$600

You can find a credit card that fits on MoneySmart.

Found this article useful? Share it with anyone who uses Apple/Google Pay a lot.