You should definitely get one if you travel a lot, whether for business or pleasure, as such credit cards are typically set up to reward frequent flyers, making it easy to rack up miles or points with overseas spending and (in some cases) spending with travel-related merchants and on airlines. However, note that air miles credit cards usually have higher income requirements, so it might not be a suitable entry-level card.
- Base earn rates are typically rather low, so it does take a while to earn sufficient miles for a trip if you use it for small transactions like grocery shopping. For local spending, a large purchase would get you a lot closer to your next getaway. You can also rack up the miles a lot more quickly if you use your credit card while travelling, since many cards offer better earn rates for overseas transactions. Also, make full use of the bonus miles offered in tandem with partner merchants.
- The confusing thing about miles credit cards is that they use different programmes to let you accumulate points. There is no one universal air miles account, so banks often use their own proprietary point systems (like Citi Miles), which you will need to familiarize yourself with. Certain cards credit miles directly into an established frequent flyer programme like Singapore Airlines’ KrisFlyer, which eliminates the hassle of conversion.
- Finding the best air miles credit card is quite subjective. Why? Because it really depends on what you’re looking for. If you like access to airport lounges and miles that don’t expire, go for Citi PremierMiles. However, they don’t offer the best miles earning rate. Now, if you’re an overseas spender, you might want to consider UOB PRVI Miles because you can get 2.4 miles per dollar spent overseas. With DBS Altitude card, you get higher miles earning power than as Citi PremierMiles, as you can get 5 miles for travel-related expenses such hotel and flight bookings.
- Before you can redeem KrisFlyer miles, you should sign up for KrisFlyer membership. Then, convert your reward points. Remember to take note of the expiry date, denominations, conversion fee and lead time. For the actual redemption, choose from Star Alliance airlines and SQ partner airlines. Take note, your flight won’t be 100% free. You need to shoulder taxes and miscellaneous charges.
- You can only transfer miles between partner airlines. If you have Citi PremierMiles, your options are wider – KrisFlyer, Asia Miles, Qantas and others.
- Most credit cards including airline-specific cards charge annual fees which are usually for the convenience of using the card to make your purchases as well the administrative costs of maintaining your credit card account. You often get a free credit card replacement if your card is lost or stolen, or if it’s damaged and you need a new one. All these costs add up and your annual fee is what goes into paying for them. Another fee to note is the conversion fee.
- Conversion fees are charges for converting the miles on your card into miles with a frequent flyer program. Several cards like Citi PremierMiles Card and UOB PRVI Miles Card have a conversion fee of $25 per conversion while other cards charge different rates. Most credit cards are linked to more than just one frequent flyer program, so you’ll get to pick from a wider range of countries to travel to.
- Some of the credit cards that offer miles with no expiry date include Citi PremierMiles Card, DBS Altitude Visa Signature Card, and OCBC 90°N Card.