Credit Limit Singapore - What It's Based On & How to Increase It (2023)
Are you spending close to your credit card limit and wondering how you can get a credit limit increase? How is the credit limit even determined in the first place? Take charge of your credit limit with the following information.
How Is Your Credit Limit Calculated in Singapore?
The credit limit on your credit card (or any unsecured credit facility such as a credit line) is determined by the bank issuing it, but ultimately, it is governed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). So whatever credit limit the bank gives you, it has to comply with MAS guidelines. Depending on your age, your total credit limit (across all credit cards) must be within the following boundaries.
Up to 55 Years Old
Above 55 Years Old
Summary of MAS Credit Limits in Singapore (2023)
|Annual Income||Credit Limit (≤55 Years Old)||Credit Limit (>55 Years Old)|
|≤S$15,000||N/A (not eligible)||S$2,500|
|S$15,000 to S$30,000||(Min. S$30,000) 2X monthly income||2X monthly income|
|S$30,000 to S$120,000||4X monthly income||4X monthly income|
|>S$120,000||No regulatory limit||No regulatory limit|
Why Is Your Credit Limit Lower Than the MAS Amount?
How to Get a Credit Limit Increase? 3 Options to Try
Assuming that the credit limit on your favourite credit card is already at the regulatory limit, you might be wondering if there is any way to still increase your credit limit for a big purchase. Here are 3 credit limit increase methods you can try. Bear in mind that, since MAS regulations, there are, well, limits to how much of an increase you can get.
Temporary Credit Limit Increase
Make an online request for a temporary credit card credit limit increase for travel, wedding, hospitalisation or compassionate purposes (be prepared with proof of your life circumstances!). You must pay off the bill before the credit limit increase expires, or you may get charged an overlimit fee.
Request Credit Limit Review
To get a permanent credit limit increase, you will need to show that your income has gone up since the time you got the credit cards. You'll need to submit your latest income documents, e.g. payslips, CPF statement, or Income Tax Notice of Assessment.
Make Advance Payment
Another way to increase your credit limit is by making advance payment on your credit card - check with your credit card provider on the procedure on this. This method makes sense if you have a have a large amount of cash but a small credit limit, and you need a temporary credit limit increase for a large purchase.
Can You Get a Credit Limit Increase With Another Credit Card Provider?
4 Best Credit Cards for Credit Limit Increase (2023)
Standard Chartered Simply Cash Credit Card
- Cash Back on Eligible spend
- Up to 1.5%
- Min. Spend per month
- Cash Back Cap
Apply and Spend S$500 to get S$330 Cash via PayNow OR an Nintendo Switch OLED (worth S$479) OR an Apple Watch SE, 40mm GPS (worth S$382.50).
PLUS get a S$20 Cash Bonus by placing your Credit Card on file and making a minimum spend with selected merchants. T&Cs apply.
Standard Chartered Simply Cash Credit Card is a simple, no-frills card with 1.5% rebate on all spending and a first year annual fee waiver.
Likewise, you can claim exclusive rewards when you sign up via MoneySmart as a new-to-StanChart customer.
American Express True Cashback Card
- Welcome Bonus (min. spend of $5,000 on eligible purchases in 6 months)
- 3.0% Cashback
- Cash Back
- Cash Back Cap
The Amex True Cashback Card is another credit card with the same value proposition: 1.5% cashback on all spending, no minimum, no cap.
The main advantage this credit card has is that it offers a bumped-up 3% cashback for the first 6 months, up to S$5,000 spend. However, bear in mind that fewer merchants accept Amex compared to Visa and Mastercard.
CIMB World Mastercard
- Unlimited Cashback on the following categories (Wine & Dine, Online Food Delivery, Movies & Digital Entertainment, Taxi & Automobile, Luxury Goods)
- Up to 2%*
- Min. spend per month to qualify for 2% Cashback
- Cash Rebate cap
CIMB World Mastercard is a no-anuual fee credit card that gives up to 2%* Unlimited Cashback on the following categories: Wine & Dine, Online Food Delivery, Movies & Digital Entertainment, Taxi & Automobile, Luxury Goods.
Citi Cash Back+ Mastercard®
- Cash Back on Eligible Spend
- Min. Spend per month
- Cash Back Cap
Apply and Spend $500 to get S$300 Cash via PayNow + S$50 CASH BONUS OR an Sony WH-1000XM5 Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones (worth $575) OR a Nintendo Switch OLED (worth S$479) OR a Hinomi H1 Pro Ergonomic Chair (worth S$559). T&Cs apply.
Similar to the Standard Chartered Simply Cash Credit Card, Citi Cash Back+ Card is an easy-to-use cash back credit card up to 8% cash back on dining, groceries and petrol and a first year annual fee waiver.
OCBC 90°N Card
- on Agoda accommodations worldwide
- S$1 = Up to 7 Miles
- on Foreign Currency spend
- S$1 = 2.1 Miles
- on Local spend
- S$1 = 1.3 Miles
Unlike cards with minimum spend required, the OCBC 90°N MasterCard Get lets you enjoy cash rebates at up to 2.1% from your earned miles (in terms of Travel$) with no minimum spend needed and no caps. Additionally, an annual fee waiver is available.
DCS CASHBACK Card
- on all eligible transactions
- Up to 5% Cash Rebate
- Airport Lounge Access and Insurance Coverage
- Annual Principal Fee
- S$194.40 (inclusive of GST)
A pretty generous 5% cash rebate for all eligible transactions with a minimum spending of S$400 (per month) is one of the perks you'll be entitled to when you use your DCS CASHBACK Regular Credit Card. If your monthly spending is lower at about S$150 or slightly more, you'll be eligible for a 2% cash rebate for all your transactions on your DCS CASHBACK S$500 Limit Credit Card.
Alternatively, Consider a Personal Loan Instead
If you need cash urgently to tide you through a rough time or an emergency, a credit limit increase may not be the best option. If you are not confident of repaying your bills on time, they may result in high-interest debt that is difficult to conquer. You may want to consider a personal loan instead, which have lower interest rates and more affordable instalment repayment plans. MoneySmart's personal loan calculator allows you to compare the different personal loan interest rates side by side.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much credit limit can I get in Singapore?
- Per MAS regulations, your credit limit is determined by your income. For most credit card users in Singapore, the maximum credit limit is 4X your monthly income. But credit card providers may offer you less, depending on your credit history and circumstances.
Will bank increase my credit limit?
- It depends on the situation. If your income has substantially increased between now and the time you got the credit card, then it's very likely that the bank will increase your credit limit upon reviewing your latest income documents. In special circumstances, e.g. in a medical emergency, banks are also willing to extend the credit limit temporarily. If you do not have a legitimate reason to ask for a credit limit increase, proceed with caution - asking for more credit for no good reason could damage your credit score.
Is it better to have higher credit limit?
- A credit limit increase can certainly be a lifeline if you are strapped for cash and need to make your essential purchases on credit for the time being. But it is not always a good thing! With a higher credit limit, your risk of overspending and getting in debt gets higher. Don't forget that having higher credit limits also means bigger bills to pay. If you are unable to pay in full and on time, it will definitely impact your credit score and make it harder to borrow in the future.