Co-branded credit cards form one among the major three types of credit cards that are available in Singapore with the other two being general purpose credit cards and private label credit cards. When we look at the market for co-branded credit cards we often see that they are referred to as either co-branded credit cards or as affinity credit cards. The difference being co-branded credit cards are general purpose credit cards that come about from a partnership between the bank and a merchant such as an Airlines or a hotel and the end reward is passed onto the cardholder. Affinity cards on the other hand are the product of a partnership between a bank and non-profit organization such as a charity or an educational institute. Cardholders use these cards not to derive any rewards but because they are partial to the cause of the institute. The expenses charged to such cards result in a very small percentage being donated towards the institute.
These credit cards have begun adopting strategies of both affinity concept and the co-branded concept. In Singapore, Co-branded credit cards have manifested themselves into cards that offer AirMiles. In fact the majority of the co-branded credit cards are ones that offer AirMiles for a frequent flyer programme whereas others are partnerships with Insurance providers, department stores and even Premier League Football Clubs. The below credit cards are the best co-branded credit cards available in Singapore.
American Express Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Ascend Credit Card: Probably the cream of the crop not just in co-branded credit cards but travel credit cards as well. The main highlight of this card is that it offers AirMiles on every expense and earns them at a higher rate on overseas expenses. The card earns 1.2 Miles on every S$1 charged locally and 2 Miles on every S$1 charged on eligible purchases overseas and on both online and in-flight purchases made at singaporeair.com, silkair.com, KrisShop and SilkAir SkyShop. The card also offers a bonus of 5000 Miles on the very first expense charged to the card as well as a bonus of 5000 miles when S$1000 is charged to the card within first 6 months of the card being approved. Cardholders also receive 4 complimentary airport lounge access passes which allow them access to any SATS Premier Lounge in Singapore and any Plaza Premium Lounge in the world.
DBS Takashimaya American Express: The DBS Takashimaya range of credit cards offer cardholders exclusive perks at Takashimaya stores. The cards come in an American Express version and a Visa version. The American Express version offers slightly higher rewards and provides cardholders with 6% voucher rebates and earns 2 Takashimaya bonus points for every S$10 charged at Takashimaya stores. Cardholders can redeem 100 Takashimaya bonus points for a total of S$30 in Takashimaya gift vouchers. Cardholders can also earn 1 DBS point for every S$5 spent at 100 Takashimaya stores and convert these points to earn more Takashimaya bonus points. Cardholders can also enjoy an additional savings of 10% during select Takashimaya sale events. The card has a lower minimum annual requirement for foreign applicants at only S$45,000. The annual fees of the card is S$192.60 for the principal card and S$96.30 for supplementary cards. The annual fees are waived for the first year and when the cardholder charges a minimum of S$6,000 to the card, they receive a waiver on the annual fees for the following year.
Maybank Manchester United Platinum Visa Card: This credit card from Maybank allows cardholders to not only show their support to their favourite football team but also revel in their celebrations. Cardholders can win a trip for two people to see the Manchester United Football club play live at the start of every football season. The card also collects TREATS points and earns 10 TREATS points for every S$1 spent at the Manchester United Store and the United Direct Online Megastore. Every time Manchester United wins a match, cardholders can earn 5 TREATS points for every S$1 charged to the card. Cardholders can also enjoy great discounts on Manchester United merchandise. They can receive a discount of up to 10% when shopping at the United Direct Online Megastore. Cardholders can also enjoy a discount of 10% on food and beverage at the Red Café at Old Trafford and can get up to 20% discount on Manchester United Stadium and Museum tour tickets purchased at the Old Trafford Football Ground. The annual fees of this card is very low at S$60 for the principal card. The supplementary cards are complimentary. The annual fee is waived for the first year and subsequent fees are waived when the cardholder charges S$3600 to the card annually.
OCBC Great Eastern CashFlo Credit Card: With this credit card, cardholders can avail select insurance plans from Great Eastern Life and Overseas Assurance Corporation and manage payments through instalments. Cardholders can split the charges over a span of 12 months at 0% interest and earn cash rebates of 1% on premiums for select Great Eastern Life and Overseas Assurance Corporation insurance plans. Cardholders also receive access to the Live Great Programme which access to workshops, seminars, articles and apps on holistic health and wellness. The card also splits all expenses charged to the card under S$1000 into instalments of 3 months and expenses over S$1000 into instalments of 6 months. The annual fee for principal card is S$160.50 and for the supplementary card is S$80.25. The annual fees are waived for two years and subsequent annual fees are waived when S$5,000 is charged to the card within its anniversary date.
SC Tigerair Platinum Credit Card: Candidates who apply for this card can either receive an upfront award of a one way ticket to any of the 11 destinations offered to cardholders by Tigerair or can choose to receive it later. If the upfront reward is chosen, the cardholder needs to charge a minimum of S$5,000 to the card and should do so every year to continue receiving the ticket. When the future rewards plan is chosen, cardholders need to charge S$8,000 to the card and convert the reward points to redeem the ticket. Cardholders can also enjoy other Tigerair perks such as advance seat selection, priority boarding, complimentary luggage size upgrades and early access to promotions. The annual fee of the principal card is S$192.60 and supplementary cards are free for life. The fees for the first 2 years is waived and subsequent annual fees is waived when a minimum spend of S$5000 is charged to the card.
Citi Paragon WORLD MasterCard: This credit card from Citibank offers cardholders a range of benefits when they charge their card for expenses incurred at Paragon. The cardholder can avail attractive benefits such as 10% Style$ rebate on all purchases year long. Charging expenses to the card in Paragon during key shopping seasons allows cardholders to avail complimentary shopping vouchers. Cardholders can also enjoy a concierge service to help with bookings and appointments within Paragon and also receive exclusive invites to closed door sales and previews for Paragon fashion shows and events. Taxi fares carry a 3% Style$ rebate at Paragon Marketplace. The card is also affordable for foreigners and requires a minimum annual income of only S$42,000 for foreign applicants. The annual fees of the card is S$192.60 for the principal card and S$96.30 for the supplementary card. The fee is waived for the first year on the principal card and two supplementary cards.
Co-branded credit cards allow cardholders to take advantage of benefits and perks from the particular establishment that has partnered with the bank. Aspiring cardholders should choose such credit cards after thorough research on which card will prove the most beneficial to them.