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    Credit cards have become an integral part of how we carry out transactions. Nowadays, there seems to be a credit card for almost every type of expense. Credit cards, in a bid to attract more customers offer a multitude of benefits. What started off with mere convenience has now become a rewarding experience every time you swipe your card. From offering cash rebates to air miles to even reward points, credit cards are packed with attractive benefits and offers. Cashback credit cards seem to be a popular choice because of the benefits they offered but there has been a shift back towards more reward based cards.

    This is partly due to the requirement of cashback cards to meet set spend limits failure to meet these monthly spend limits and you end up getting a far lesser rate of cashback than what was advertised. Also, very few cards give you unlimited cashback with most cards capping the amount of rebates that you can earn in a month.

    Reward credit cards on the other hand don’t require you to meet set spend limits every month. These reward points can be earned on every expense charged to the card and most cards out there give you faster rate of earning on select expenses and overseas expenses.

    Unlike cashback which is just credited into your account, reward points can be accrued and redeemed for a wide variety of perks including on the spot redemptions at select retailers, exciting electronic gifts and appliances or even be redeemed for air miles that can be used at major frequent flyer programmes.

    What sets a credit card apart for being the best rewards credit card to is a holistic view on not just the reward points it can earn but how it can benefit you in other areas. Below, we present to you our pick of the best rewards credit cards in Singapore. Read on to find the right credit card for you.

    Best Rewards Credit Cards in Singapore

    Here are some of the top rewards credit cards that we think give you the best perks for the expenses charged to your card:

    HSBC Revolution card

    This card from HSBC offers one of the best reward point earning rate around and gives you 5 times the reward points when you swipe your card for specific expenses. The reward points earned can be used to redeem air miles making it an apt travel credit as well.

    Advantages of the card

    – You will get the following benefits on the HSBC Revolution Card:

    • Reward points earned: The card earns up to 5 reward points for every S$ charged to the card on online expenses such as booking airline tickets or hotel reservations or food deliveries and insurance payments. The card also offers 5 reward points for every S$1 charged to the card on local dining expenses and local entertainment expenses. All other transactions fetch 1 reward point for every S$1 charged to the card.
    • No spend requirements: The points earned never expire. You get to accrue points for as long as you wish. The points do not require any monthly minimum spend criteria to meet nor is it capped.
    • Promotional offers: The card also gives you an exciting promotional offer of S$120 cash back or HSBC's Gold Class Movie Card for new customers whereas existing customers can apply for the card and get S$50 cashback.

    Disadvantages of the card

    – Here are some components where the card doesn’t do too well:

    • Contactless options: The contactless payment options on this card are very limited. The card can only be linked to Apple Pay but not to systems such as Android or Samsung Pay. The card is equipped with Visa payWave.
    • Conversions rates: The rate of conversion of reward points into air miles is a bit expensive. Each mile requires 2.5 points to redeem and redemption can only be done in blocks of 5,000 reward points.

    Citi Rewards credit card

    This credit card from Citibank offers some exclusive promotional benefits that can earn reward points for you at an accelerated rate. The card itself offers reward points at a high rate of earning of up to 10 points for every S$1 charged on specific expenses. The card also comes with a host of other benefits such as 14% savings on fuel expenses at Esso and Shell stations and Citi rebates at over 300 merchant outlets.

    Advantages of the card

    – You will get the following benefits on the Citi Rewards Credit Card:

    • Reward points earned: The card earns reward points at the rate of 10 reward points for every S$1 sent on purchase of clothes, shoes or bags locally and overseas, on local and overseas departmental store expenses, and on online shopping expenses. All other expenses charged to the card fetch reward points at the rate of 1 point for every S$1 charged to the card.
    • Promotional rate of earning: When shopping at Lazada.SG, you can get a discount of S$15 per transaction on up to 280 transactions carried out from Saturday to Monday. The offer is valid till 26th June. Expenses incurred at Lazada also fetches you 20 reward points for every S$1 charged to the card. The offer is valid till 30th June 2017. Shopping expenses incurred at Amazon also earns 20 reward points for every S$1 charged to the card. The offer is valid till 30th June 2017.

    Disadvantages of the card

    – Here are some components where the card doesn’t do too well:

    • Redemption rates: Limited category of expenses to earn points from. If you don’t shop,any other purchase or payment made on the card will only fetch you reward points at the rate of 1 point for every S$1 charged to the card.
    • Expiry: The reward points earned have an expiry period of 5 years.

    American Express Platinum card

    This is an Amex rewards credit card that offers a slew of welcome gifts and benefits. The Platinum card offers cardholders more than just reward points, it is one of the most jampacked credit card and gives benefits ranging from dining to golfing.

    Advantages of the card

    – You will get the following benefits on the American Express Platinum credit card:

    • Reward points earned: The card earns reward points at the rate of 2 points for every S$1.60 charged to the card. These points can be either accrued and converted into air miles or can be used to offset the purchase price at select merchant outlets. The card also earns 10 reward points for every S$1.60 charged to the card at Platinum EXTRA partner outlets such as Hwa Jewellry, Watches of Switzerland and others.
    • Promotional offers: New customers who apply for the American Express Platinum card can stand to win a B&O LAY H5 earphones from Bang & Olufsen, a 2 days, 1 night stay at Dorsett Singapore when they charge S$5,000 to the card within first 6 months of having the card approved and a Samsung Sigma 76cm luggage piece when they spend an additional S$2,500 within the first 6 months of having the card approved.
    • Platinum Dining: You get access to the Platinum Dining programme which gives you discount privileges at select leading restaurants across Singapore.
    • Platinum Lifestyle: You get access to the Platinum Lifestyle programme which gives you nightlife and golfing privileges.

    Disadvantages of the card

    – Here are some components where the card doesn’t do too well:

    • Eligibility requirement: The card requires you to have a high income level of S$50,000 per year if you are a Singaporean or permanent resident and requires an income level of S$60,000 or more annually if you are a foreign citizen. The annual fees of the card is also quite high at S$321 per year.

    American Express CapitaCard

    This credit card is designed to provide maximum benefits when used in a CapitaLand Mall. The card earns reward points at a higher rate when used at select merchant outlets inside the malls. The card also comes with a one year annual fee waiver

    Advantages of the card

    The following benefits are available on the American Express Capita Card:

    • Reward points earned: You can earn up to 5STAR$ for every S$1 charged to the card. When using your card at CapitaLand Malls, the rate of earning reward points is tripled to 15STAR$ with the additional 10SMART$ being awarded only when expenses are incurred in any one of the 60 participating merchant outlets inside the mall.
    • Referral bonus: The card gives you S$30 CapitaLand vouchers when you refer one friend to get the CapitaCard. Referring 10 friends will fetch you S$300 worth of CapitaLand vouchers.

    Disadvantages of the card

    – Here are some components where the card doesn’t do too well:

    • Spend requirement: The rate of reward points redemption is quite low on the American Express CapitaCard. 5000STAR$ will only fetch you a Capita voucher worth S$5. S$1 worth of Capita vouchers is equivalent to 1000 STAR$. Considering that you’re earning only 5STAR$ for every S$1 spent in CapitaLand Malls with the additional 10STAR$ being credited at 60 of the participating merchants, the rate of redemption is quite low. The 3X STAR$ awarded on expenses incurred in CapitaLand Malls is capped to S$1,200 per calendar month as well.

    DBS Woman’s World card

    The DBS Woman’s World card is a card that specifically caters to women. The card earns a higher rate of reward points on online expenses as compared to the DBS Woman’s card and even offers lifestyle perks such as 2 complimentary visits to True Fitness & True Yoga.

    Advantages of the card

    – The benefits available on the DBS Woman’s World card are listed here:

    • Reward points earned: You can earn up to 10X DBS points or 20 miles on every S$5 charged to the card on qualifying online shopping expenses. The card also earns ^X DBS points or 12 miles for every S$5 spent overseas on shopping expenses.

    Disadvantages of the card

    – Some of the aspects where the card doesn’t do too well are:

    • Rate of earning: Firstly, the card earns points on blocks of S$5 charged to the card instead of S$1 as offered by other rewards cards. Secondly, the increased rate of earning of 10X DBS points are only valid on qualifying online transactions. Expenses charged on other categories earns a lower amount of reward points.
    • High annual fees: The card charges a higher annual fee of S$192.60 as compared to the DBS Woman’s card which charges an annual fee of only S$160.50.

    Compare & Review Best Credit Cards for Earning Reward Points in Singapore

    Here’s a quick run-through of best rewards credit cards in Singapore

    Card Name

    Rewards/Cashback

    Earning Limit

    Minimum Spend Required

    Other Perks

    HSBC Revolution Card

    Earns 5 reward point for every S$1 charged to the card on online expenses, local dining expenses and entertainment expenses. All other expenses fetch 1 reward point for every S$ charged to the card

    Redemption can be done in blocks of 3,000 points for the first redemption and blocks of 300 points for subsequent redemptions

    No minimum spend required

    Promotional offer of S$120 cashback or HSBC Gold Class movie card for new customers and S$50 cashback for existing customers who apply for the card

    Citi Rewards Card

    Earns 10 reward points for every S$1 charged to the card on purchase of clothes, shoes or bags locally and overseas, on local and overseas departmental store expenses, and on online shopping expenses

    Reward points earned have an expiry date of 5 years

    None

    Promotional offers at Lazada and Amazon.

    Savings on fuel expenses incurred at Esso and Shell petrol stations

    Up to 10% Citi rebate at over 300 merchant outlets

    American Express Platinum credit card

    Earns 2 reward points for every S$1.60 charged to the card and earns 10 reward points for every S$1.60 charged to the card at select partner outlets

    None

    None

    Promotional offer of Bang & Olufsen headphones, 2 days 1 night stay at Dorsett Singapore if S$5,000 is charged to the card within first 6 months of card approval and Samsung luggage piece if additional S$2,500 is charged to the card within the same period.

    Platinum dining privileges

    Platinum Lifestyle privileges

    Platinum Golf privileges

    American Express CapitaCard

    Up to 5MSART$ for every S$1 charged to the card outside CapitaLand Malls and 15SMART$ for every S$1 charged to the card at select merchant outlets inside CapitaLand Malls

    Additional 10SMART$ earned on expenses charged at select outlets is capped to S$1,200 per calendar month

    None

    Additional SMART$ earned through referrals.

    DBS Woman’s World card

    Earn up to 10X DBS points on every S$5 spent using the card for online transactions and 3X DBS points on every S$1 spent overseas

    None

    None

    • Promotional offer of S$100 cashback when new DBS cardholders apply for the card. Existing DBS cardholders get S$70 as cashback.

    How to choose the best credit card to earn reward points in Singapore?

    Here are some tips on how to choose the right rewards credit card for you:

    • Figure out whether reward points are for you based on your spending patterns. Certain expenses fetch you more reward points than others. Go in for a card that offers you a fair rate of reward points on the expenses you are most likely to incur.
    • Take into consideration the perks of the card apart from reward points. Does it offer you a concierge service? Does it come with complimentary insurance policies? See what the rate of redemption on the card is. The card may earn reward points on every expense charged but check how many reward points it takes to get you anything. Check if you can redeem your points as and when you get it or whether you have to redeem them in blocks.
    • Take into account the card’s affordability. By this we man not just its annual fees and interest rates but also the rate of redemption. It makes no sense for you to go in for a card that requires way too many reward points in order to redeem anything. If the rate of redemption isn’t good enough and if it comes with a high annual fee, the reward points earned are not worth the effort.
    • Not meeting eligibility criteria such as income or age can end up in your application being rejected which can have a negative impact on your credit score.
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