Compare the Best Credit Cards in Singapore 2019

Updated November 2019

Looking for the best credit cards in Singapore? Compare and find your ideal card with MoneySmart’s easy-to-use credit card comparison tool.

Popular Credit Cards

Get S$200 Cash or Grab Codes!

Citi Rewards Card

S$1= 10X Points

on Online Spend*

S$1= 10X Points

on Shopping Spend

S$1 = 1 Point

on All Other Spend

MoneySmart Exclusive: Get S$200 Cash via PayNow or Grab Codes! Applies to new to bank customers. Claim HereValid till 30 Nov 2019.

S$1= 10X Points

on Online Spend*

S$1= 10X Points

on Shopping Spend

S$1 = 1 Point

on All Other Spend

MoneySmart Exclusive: Get S$200 Cash via PayNow or Grab Codes! Applies to new to bank customers. Claim HereValid till 30 Nov 2019.

Key Features

  • 10X Rewards on all online purchases (excludes travel-related transactions). Bank's T&Cs apply
  • 10X Rewards on Ride-haling, Shopping and Online spends. T&Cs apply
  • 10X Rewards capped at 10,000 Points per statement month
  • 10X Rewards = 4 Miles
  • S$1 spent = 1 Rewards point (All other spend). No minimum spend required, no cap
  • *Bank's T&Cs apply

Annual Interest Rate and Fees

Annual Interest Rate26.90%
Principle Annual Fee$193
Supplementary Annual Fee$96.30
Fee WaiverAvailable
Minimum Monthly Repayment1% or S$50, whichever is higher
Interest Free Period25 days

Minimum Income Requirements

Singaporean$30,000
Foreigner$42,000

Other

Card AssociationMasterCard, Visa
Wireless PaymentMaster PayPass, Visa payWave, Samsung Pay, Citi Pay
HSBC Advance Credit Card

Up to 3.5%

Cash Back on All Spend

S$125

Cash Back Cap per month

S$0

Min. Spend per month

Online Promotion: Get a Samsonite T5 Spinner (worth S$560) OR S$150 Cash Back with min. spend of $800 in first month of card approval + S$20 worth of Grab rides!Valid till 31 Dec 2019.

Up to 3.5%

Cash Back on All Spend

S$125

Cash Back Cap per month

S$0

Min. Spend per month

Online Promotion: Get a Samsonite T5 Spinner (worth S$560) OR S$150 Cash Back with min. spend of $800 in first month of card approval + S$20 worth of Grab rides!Valid till 31 Dec 2019.

Key Features

  • Up to 3.5% Cash Back on all purchases
  • No minimum spend required
  • Up to 75% off hotel bookings on Agoda and 10% off hotel books on Expedia
  • 1 year card annual fee waiver / Perpetual card annual fee waiver for HSBC Advance banking customers

Annual Interest Rate and Fees

Annual Interest Rate25.90%
Principle Annual Fee$193
Supplementary Annual Fee0.0
Fee WaiverAvailable
Minimum Monthly Repayment3% or S$50, whichever is higher
Interest Free Period20 days

Minimum Income Requirements

Singaporean$30,000
Foreigner$40,000

Other

Card AssociationVisa
Wireless PaymentVisa payWave, Apple Pay
CIMB Platinum Mastercard

10%

Cash Back on Wine & Dine, Petrol & Transport, Travel

S$800

Min. spend per month

S$100

Cash Back Cap

Online Promotion: Get a free return flight ticket!Valid till 31 Dec 2019.

10%

Cash Back on Wine & Dine, Petrol & Transport, Travel

S$800

Min. spend per month

S$100

Cash Back Cap

Online Promotion: Get a free return flight ticket!Valid till 31 Dec 2019.

Key Features

  • 10% Cash Back on Wine & Dine
  • 10% Cash Back on Transport & Petrol
  • 10% Cash Back on Travel in Foreign Currency
  • 10% Cash Back on Health & Medical
  • 10% Cash Back on Electronic & Furnishing at Selected Merchants
  • 0.2% Unlimited Cash Back - no min monthly spend or cap
  • 10% is capped at S$100 per month and up to S$20 per category
  • 10% Cash back consists of the base Cash Back of 0.2% and an additional 9.8%
  • Annual Interest Rate and Fees

    Annual Interest Rate25.90%
    Principle Annual Fee$0
    Supplementary Annual FeeFree
    Fee WaiverAvailable
    Minimum Monthly Repayment3% or S$50, whichever is higher
    Interest Free Period23 days

    Minimum Income Requirements

    Singaporean$30,000
    Foreigner$60,000

    Other

    Card AssociationMastercard
    Wireless PaymentMastercard PayPass
    CIMB Visa Signature

    10%

    Cash Back on Beauty & Wellness, Online Shopping, Groceries

    S$800

    Min. spend per month

    S$100

    Cash Back Cap

    Online Promotion: Get a free return flight ticket!Valid till 31 Dec 2019.

    10%

    Cash Back on Beauty & Wellness, Online Shopping, Groceries

    S$800

    Min. spend per month

    S$100

    Cash Back Cap

    Online Promotion: Get a free return flight ticket!Valid till 31 Dec 2019.

    Key Features

    • 10% Cash Back on Beauty & Wellness
    • 10% Cash Back on Online Shopping
    • 10% Cash Back on Groceries and more
    • 10% Cash Back on Pet Shops & Veterinary Services
    • 10% Cash Back on Cruises
    • 0.2% Unlimited Cash Back - no min monthly spend or cap
    • 10% is capped at S$100 per month and up to S$20 per category
    • 10% Cash back consists of the base Cash Back of 0.2% and an additional 9.8%

    Annual Interest Rate and Fees

    Annual Interest Rate25.90%
    Principle Annual Fee$0
    Supplementary Annual FeeFree
    Fee WaiverAvailable
    Minimum Monthly Repayment3% or S$50, whichever is higher
    Interest Free Period23 days

    Minimum Income Requirements

    Singaporean$30,000
    Foreigner$60,000

    Other

    Card AssociationVisa
    Wireless PaymentVisa PayWave
    UOB PRVI Miles Card

    S$1 = 1.4 Miles

    Local Spend

    S$1 = 2.4 Miles

    Overseas Spend

    S$1 = 10 Miles

    Selected Online Hotel and Flight bookings

    Online Promotion: 10k welcome miles with S$6k spend Valid till 31 Dec 2019.
    • Earn up to 3miles per S$1 spend on Klook bookings (Exclusive to UOB Prvi Miles Cards only)

    S$1 = 1.4 Miles

    Local Spend

    S$1 = 2.4 Miles

    Overseas Spend

    S$1 = 10 Miles

    Selected Online Hotel and Flight bookings

    Online Promotion: 10k welcome miles with S$6k spend Valid till 31 Dec 2019.

    Key Features

    • S$1 = 1.4 miles (Local spend)
    • S$1 = 2.4 miles (Overseas spend)
    • S$1 = 6 miles for spends on major airlines and hotels booked through Expedia, UOB Travel, and Agoda
    • No minimum spend and no cap on earned miles
    • Earn up to 4.4 Miles on bus and train rides via mobile contactless; spending cap at S$80 per month
    • Earn up to 4.4 Miles on overseas dining, shopping (including online) and accommodation; spending cap at S$3,000; Valid till 31 December 2019

    Annual Interest Rate and Fees

    Annual Interest Rate25.90%
    Principle Annual Fee$257
    Supplementary Annual Fee128.4
    Fee Waiver1 year fee waiver, free first 2 supplementary cards
    Minimum Monthly Repayment3% or S$50, whichever is higher
    Interest Free Period21 days

    Minimum Income Requirements

    Singaporean$30,000
    Foreigner$40,000

    Other

    Card AssociationMasterCard, Visa, American Express
    Wireless PaymentMasterCard PayPass, Visa payWave, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Android Pay, Mighty Pay
    OCBC 365 Credit Card

    6%

    Cashback on Everyday Dining (Including Local, Overseas and Online Food Delivery)

    S$80

    Cashback Cap per month

    S$800

    Min. Spend per month

    Online Promotion: Get S$50 Cash Rebate! Applies to New-To-Bank customers.Valid till 30 Nov 2019.

    6%

    Cashback on Everyday Dining (Including Local, Overseas and Online Food Delivery)

    S$80

    Cashback Cap per month

    S$800

    Min. Spend per month

    Online Promotion: Get S$50 Cash Rebate! Applies to New-To-Bank customers.Valid till 30 Nov 2019.

    Key Features

    • 6% cashback on everyday dining (including local, overseas and online food delivery)
    • 3% cashback on grocery, land transport, online travel, recurring telco and electricity bills
    • 0.3% cashback on everything else
    • Up to S$200,000 of complimentary travel personal accident insurance
    • 2 years fee waiver for principal card (S$192.60), subsequent years waived with min. spend of S$10,000 p.a.

    Annual Interest Rate and Fees

    Annual Interest Rate26.88%
    Principle Annual Fee$193
    Supplementary Annual FeeS$96.30
    Fee WaiverAvailable
    Minimum Monthly Repayment3% or S$50, whichever is higher
    Interest Free Period23 days

    Minimum Income Requirements

    Singaporean$30,000
    Foreigner$45,000

    Other

    Card AssociationVisa
    Wireless PaymentVisa payWave, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google Pay
    Standard Chartered X Credit Card

    S$1 = 1.2 Miles

    on Local Spend

    S$1 = 2 Miles

    on Overseas Spend

    60,000 Miles

    Promotional Gift

    Online Promotion: Get 60,000 Welcome Air MilesValid till 30 Nov 2019.
    • Bonus of up to 300,000 extra air miles with Priority Banking sign-up

    S$1 = 1.2 Miles

    on Local Spend

    S$1 = 2 Miles

    on Overseas Spend

    60,000 Miles

    Promotional Gift

    Online Promotion: Get 60,000 Welcome Air MilesValid till 30 Nov 2019.

    Key Features

    • Receive 60,000 Miles when you pay the card annual fee and spend $6,000 on eligible transactions within 60 days from card approval date; valid till 31 Dec 2019
    • S$1 = 1.2 miles (or 1.2% cashback) for local spending
    • S$1 = 2 miles (or 2% cashback) for overseas spending
    • Get instant Digital Card + Approval when you apply via MyInfo
    • 2 Complementary Access to Priority Pass™ Lounges at over 1300 airport lounges per year
    • Complimentary travel insurance coverage of up to S$1,000,000 when you charge your full fare to your card before you go abroad

    Annual Interest Rate and Fees

    Annual Interest Rate26.90%
    Principle Annual Fee$696
    Supplementary Annual Fee$107
    Fee WaiverNot Available
    Minimum Monthly Repayment1% or S$50, whichever is higher
    Interest Free Period22 days

    Minimum Income Requirements

    Singaporean$80,000
    Foreigner$80,000

    Other

    Card AssociationVisa
    Wireless PaymentVisa payWave, SC EasyBill
    Standard Chartered Spree Credit Card

    3%

    Cash Back on Online Spends in Foreign Currency

    S$60

    Cash Back Cap per month

    S$0

    Min. Spend per month

    3%

    Cash Back on Online Spends in Foreign Currency

    S$60

    Cash Back Cap per month

    S$0

    Min. Spend per month

    Key Features

    • New-To-Bank customers: Get up to S$100 Cashback when you apply for SCB Rewards
    • Existing customers: Get up to S$20 Cashback when you apply for SCB Rewards
    • No minimum spend and up to S$60 cashback/month
    • 3% cashback on all online spends in foreign currency and vPost spends
    • 2% cashback on all online spends in local currency, contactless and mobile payments
    • 1% cashback on all other retail transactions

    Annual Interest Rate and Fees

    Annual Interest Rate26.90%
    Principle Annual Fee$193
    Supplementary Annual Fee0.0
    Fee WaiverAvailable
    Minimum Monthly Repayment1% or S$50, whichever is higher
    Interest Free Period

    Minimum Income Requirements

    Singaporean$30,000
    Foreigner$60,000

    Other

    Card AssociationVisa
    Wireless PaymentVisa payWave, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google Pay
    Standard Chartered Visa Infinite Credit Card

    S$1 = 1.4 Miles

    Local Spend

    S$1 = 3 Miles

    Overseas Spend

    35,000 Miles

    Welcome Gift

    S$1 = 1.4 Miles

    Local Spend

    S$1 = 3 Miles

    Overseas Spend

    35,000 Miles

    Welcome Gift

    Key Features

    • Get 35,000 Miles when you apply for SCB Visa Infinite Credit Card via MoneySmart
    • $1 = 1.4 miles (Local)
    • $1 = 3 miles (Overseas)
    • Complimentary visits to the airport lounges under the Priority Pass Lounge program
    • Complimentary Travel Accident Insurance coverage of up to S$1,000,000

    Annual Interest Rate and Fees

    Annual Interest Rate26.90%
    Principle Annual Fee$589
    Supplementary Annual Fee0.0
    Fee WaiverNot Available
    Minimum Monthly Repayment1% of S$50, whichever is higher
    Interest Free Period22 days

    Minimum Income Requirements

    Singaporean$150,000
    Foreigner$150,000

    Other

    Card AssociationVisa
    Wireless PaymentVisa payWave
    HSBC Revolution Credit Card

    S$1= 5X Points

    on Online, Dining and Entertainment

    S$1= 1X Point

    on All Other Spend

    1 Point = 0.4 Miles

    Rewards to Miles Conversion for Selected Airline Partners

    Online Promotion: Get a Samsonite T5 Spinner (worth S$560) OR S$150 Cash Back with min. spend of $800 in first month of card approval + S$20 worth of Grab rides!Valid till 31 Dec 2019.

    S$1= 5X Points

    on Online, Dining and Entertainment

    S$1= 1X Point

    on All Other Spend

    1 Point = 0.4 Miles

    Rewards to Miles Conversion for Selected Airline Partners

    Online Promotion: Get a Samsonite T5 Spinner (worth S$560) OR S$150 Cash Back with min. spend of $800 in first month of card approval + S$20 worth of Grab rides!Valid till 31 Dec 2019.

    Key Features

    • 5X Rewards points (or 2 air miles) per $1 spent on Online, Local Dining and Entertainment transactions
    • $1 = 1 Reward point. No minimum spend and earn as many Rewards points as you like
    • Access over 1,000 1-for-1 deals through ENTERTAINER with HSBC at just S$5
    • 2 year annual fee waiver

    Annual Interest Rate and Fees

    Annual Interest Rate25.90%
    Principle Annual Fee$150
    Supplementary Annual Fee0.0
    Fee WaiverAvailable
    Minimum Monthly Repayment3% or S$50, whichever is higher
    Interest Free Period20 days

    Minimum Income Requirements

    Singaporean$30,000
    Foreigner$40,000

    Other

    Card AssociationVisa
    Wireless PaymentVisa payWave, Apple Pay
    DBS Live Fresh Card

    Up to 10%

    Cashback on Online, Visa Contactless & Transport Spend

    S$80

    Cash Back Cap per month

    S$600

    Min. Spend per month

    Online Promotion: Enjoy up to S$180 cashbackValid till 31 Mar 2020.

    Up to 10%

    Cashback on Online, Visa Contactless & Transport Spend

    S$80

    Cash Back Cap per month

    S$600

    Min. Spend per month

    Online Promotion: Enjoy up to S$180 cashbackValid till 31 Mar 2020.

    Key Features

    • Earn up to 10% cashback on your Transport spend (includes bus, train and taxi rides, and even ride-hailing services) with a minimum spend of S$600 per calendar month for the first 180 days from Card Approval Date
    • Earn 5% cashback on Online & Visa contactless spend with a minimum spend of S$600 per calendar month
    • Earn 0.3% cashback on all other spend
    • All-in-one card: Use the same card for your bus and train rides, and ATM withdrawals
    • Enjoy 1-year annual fee waiver

    Annual Interest Rate and Fees

    Annual Interest Rate26.80%
    Principle Annual Fee$193
    Supplementary Annual FeeS$96.30
    Fee Waiver1 year
    Minimum Monthly Repayment3.00% or S$50, whichever is higher
    Interest Free Period20 days

    Minimum Income Requirements

    Singaporean$30,000
    Foreigner$45,000

    Other

    Card AssociationVisa
    Wireless PaymentVisa Contactless, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google Pay
    HSBC Visa Infinite Credit Card

    S$1 = Up to 1.25 Miles

    Local Spend

    S$1 = Up to 2.25 Miles

    Overseas Spend

    35,000 Miles

    Welcome Gift

    S$1 = Up to 1.25 Miles

    Local Spend

    S$1 = Up to 2.25 Miles

    Overseas Spend

    35,000 Miles

    Welcome Gift

    Key Features

    • Up to 2.25 air miles per S$1 spent
    • Present your HSBC Visa Infinite Credit Card and boarding pass to enjoy complimentary access to over 1,100 LoungeKey participating lounges.
    • Access to HSBC’s Infinite Travel & Lifestyle Concierge service for personalised assistance, 24/7
    • Complimentary limousine transfer and expedited immigration clearance
    • Automatic worldwide travel insurance coverage for over 20 benefits of up to US$2,000,000

    Annual Interest Rate and Fees

    Annual Interest Rate25.90%
    Principle Annual Fee$650
    Supplementary Annual Fee0.0
    Fee WaiverNot Available
    Minimum Monthly Repayment3% or S$50, whichever is higher
    Interest Free Period20 days

    Minimum Income Requirements

    Singaporean$120,000
    Foreigner$120,000

    Other

    Card AssociationVisa
    Wireless PaymentVisa payWave, Apple Pay
    KrisFlyer UOB Credit Card

    S$1 = 3 Miles

    on Singapore Airlines, SilkAir, Scoot and KrisShop

    S$1 = 3 Miles

    on dining, food delivery, online shopping and travel, and transport spend

    S$1 = 1.2 Miles

    on all other spend

    S$1 = 3 Miles

    on Singapore Airlines, SilkAir, Scoot and KrisShop

    S$1 = 3 Miles

    on dining, food delivery, online shopping and travel, and transport spend

    S$1 = 1.2 Miles

    on all other spend

    Key Features

    • $1 = 3 KrisFlyer Miles for spend on everyday spend categories with S$500 min. annual spend on Singapore Airlines Group
    • $1 = 3 KrisFlyer Miles on Singapore Airlines, SilkAir, Scoot and KrisShop purchases
    • $1 = 1.8 KrisFlyer Miles on Dining, Online Shopping and Travel, and Transport Card Transactions with a min sum of S$500 charged on Singapore Airlines Related Card Transactions in a year
    • $1 = 1.2 KrisFlyer Miles on all other spend

    Annual Interest Rate and Fees

    Annual Interest Rate25.90%
    Principle Annual Fee$193
    Supplementary Annual Fee96.30
    Fee WaiverAvailable
    Minimum Monthly Repayment3% or S$50, whichever is higher
    Interest Free Period21 days

    Minimum Income Requirements

    Singaporean$30,000
    Foreigner$40,000

    Other

    Card AssociationMastercard
    Wireless PaymentMastercard Contactless, UOB Mighty Pay, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay
    DBS Takashimaya American Express Card

    S$10 = 2 Taka Points

    at Takashimaya Department Store & Takashimaya Square, B2

    S$10 = 2 Taka Points

    on All Other Spend at Selected Stores

    S$30 Vouchers

    converted from 100 Taka Points

    S$10 = 2 Taka Points

    at Takashimaya Department Store & Takashimaya Square, B2

    S$10 = 2 Taka Points

    on All Other Spend at Selected Stores

    S$30 Vouchers

    converted from 100 Taka Points

    Key Features

    • Additional 10% savings during selected sale events at Takashimaya Department Store
    • Get a $30 Takashimaya Voucher with 100 points (S$500 spend)
    • Receive S$3 top-up to CashCard with min. spend of S$120 at Takashimaya Department Store

    Annual Interest Rate and Fees

    Annual Interest Rate25.90%
    Principle Annual Fee$193
    Supplementary Annual Fee96.3
    Fee WaiverAvailable
    Minimum Monthly Repayment3% or S$50, whichever is higher
    Interest Free Period20 days

    Minimum Income Requirements

    Singaporean$30,000
    Foreigner$45,000

    Other

    Card AssociationVisa, American Express
    Wireless PaymentVisa payWave, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google Pay
    UOB One Card

    Up to 10%

    Cash Back on Grab

    S$300

    Cash Back Cap per quarter

    S$2000

    Min. Spend per month

    Up to 10%

    Cash Back on Grab

    S$300

    Cash Back Cap per quarter

    S$2000

    Min. Spend per month

    Key Features

    • Up to 5% cash rebate on all spend for spend above S$2,000/month per quarter (up to 3.33% cash rebate for spend of $500 or $1,000 monthly)
    • Up to 24% savings on fuel purchases at SPC and 20.8% at Shell Stations
    • Up to 10% additional SMART$ rebate with UOB SMART$ Rebate Programme at over 400 participating merchants
    • First year annual fee waiver

    Annual Interest Rate and Fees

    Annual Interest Rate25.90%
    Principle Annual Fee$193
    Supplementary Annual Fee1st supplementary card free; $96.30 for subsequent cards
    Fee WaiverAvailable
    Minimum Monthly Repayment3% of S$50, whichever is higher
    Interest Free Period21 days

    Minimum Income Requirements

    Singaporean$30,000
    Foreigner$40,000

    Other

    Card AssociationVisa
    Wireless PaymentVisa payWave, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Android Pay, Mighty Pay
    Show more cards

    Best Credit Card in Singapore 2019

    Best ForCredit CardReward Type
    Savings on dining, grocery and grab spendingsCiti Cash Back CardCashback
    Earning bonus miles that do not expireCiti PremierMiles Visa CardMiles
    Convenience and perks for frequent flyersAmerican Express Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Credit CardMiles
    Unlimited cashback with Ez-link capabilitiesStandard Chartered Unlimited Cashback Credit CardCashback
    Card and Savings Account BundleUOB One CardCashback
    Highest cashback on any contactless paymentDBS Live Fresh CardCashback
    Newlyweds and married couplesHSBC Advance Credit CardCashback
    High Net-worth IndividualsAmerican Express The Platinum Card®Reward Points
    Dining and EntertainmentUOB YOLO Credit CardCashback
    Business TravelerStandard Chartered Visa Infinite Credit CardMiles

    Compare Credit Cards for Everyday Use

    When comparing the best credit cards for rewards, it is often a good choice to combine multiple credit cards each specializing in a particular spending type or card feature that best suits your lifestyle. Avoid paring Miles credit cards with Cashback credit cards since these reward types are incompatible. Points credit cards, on the other hand, are more flexible as they can be used to either get cash rebates on specific merchants or convert points into miles to redeem free flight tickets.

    Air Miles

    Miles Credit Cards

    1. Citi PremierMiles Visa Card: Use for online hotel and flight bookings
    2. UOB PRVI Miles Card: Use for general local spend
    3. Standard Chartered Visa Infinite Credit Card: Use for spending in foreign currency

    Cashback

    Cashback Credit Cards

    1. Citi Cash Back Card: Use for grocery shopping worldwide
    2. UOB One Card: Use for pumping petrol at SPC and Shell
    3. OCBC 365 Credit Card: Use for spending on everyday dining

    Reward Points

    Reward Points Credit Cards

    1. Citi Rewards Card: Use for retail shopping to earn extra miles
    2. American Express CapitaCard: Use for shopping at CapitaLand Malls to earn cash rebates
    3. DBS Woman's World Card: Use for free gym memberships

    Which Credit Card is the Best in Singapore?

    With so many credit cards in Singapore to choose from, it can be difficult to narrow down the best credit cards to suit your lifestyle. Unfortunately, there’s no single best credit card in Singapore. You’ll have to choose the best one for you. Here’s how:

    Find a card that fits your spending habits

    Think about your current lifestyle and spending habits. What are the things you spend the most money on? For example, if you’re a real foodie and love checking out new restaurants around town, then it makes sense to get a card with rewards points for dining out and useful perks like 1-for-1 buffet promotions.

    Plan how to use your credit card benefits

    Credit cards come with a whole bunch of benefits, so think about which benefits you actually want to use. Do you want to collect air miles and fund your upcoming travels? Or accumulate points for shopping vouchers? Or would you rather enjoy cash rebates? This is a deeply personal matter - only you can decide how you prefer to be rewarded.

    Check the Terms & Conditions

    Now that you’ve got a shortlist of credit cards, it’s time to dig deeper into the details of the rewards or air miles programmes. Find out all you can about terms and conditions like expiry dates, exclusions, minimum spend, credit limit, etc. Be sure to ask a bank rep to clarify if you don’t see answers anywhere.

    Visa Card vs Mastercard vs American Express

    At some point in your life, you’ll probably wonder if there’s a difference between a Visa card and Mastercard (and maybe American Express). Visa, Mastercard and Amex are the 3 big global payment networks. This means they handle all the technical back-end stuff that makes it possible to pay with your credit card anywhere in the world. Visa and Mastercard are extremely widely accepted worldwide, both online and offline. Both payment networks are easy and secure to use. Visa has a slight edge in terms of acceptance, but really, you’ll be fine with either. American Express is a bit less widely accepted globally. It’s in 140 countries compared to Visa and Mastercard’s 200+. However, many people still love using Amex because they have an excellent reputation for customer care. Whichever payment network you choose, you can get a credit card from a bank like DBS or UOB. Note that American Express also issues its own credit cards, even though it’s not a bank.

    Try MoneySmart’s new KrisFlyer miles calculator

    Use our new KrisFlyer miles redemption calculator and find out which destinations you can travel for free on a travel class of your choice.

    Annual Fees are NOT the Only Credit Card Fee!

    Annual fees aren’t the only type of credit card charges you might be paying. Many of these other common fees will impact the benefits you earn, so be mindful of them and actively monitor your spend.

    Foreign Transaction Fees

    This is a fee imposed on overseas spending - whether it’s while you’re traveling or even when making an online purchase on a foreign website. This is usually 2.5% to 3% on top of the prevailing foreign exchange rate.

    Cash Advance Fees

    Some credit cards allow you to withdraw cash from ATMs, using your credit line. Be prepared to fork out up to 6% of the transaction amount, plus 2%+ daily charges on unpaid withdrawn balance.

    Balance Transfer Fees

    Charged when you move a balance from one card to another, usually 2% to 4% of the amount transferred.

    Minimum Balance Payment for Credit Cards

    Is paying the minimum balance bad?

    Because credit cards are effectively short-term loans, you are meant to pay off your bills in full every month. If you make only the minimum payment each month, you may accrue huge additional costs on top of your bill due to the credit card’s interest rate (typically 24%+)!

    Does paying only minimum balance affect credit score?

    Yes, If you plan to apply for any kind of credit or loan (such as a housing loan or car loan) in the future, be aware that any “bad behaviour” with your credit card can come back to haunt you in the form of a bad credit score.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    How do credit cards work?

    A credit card is basically a way to borrow money from a bank to make purchases. Unlike a bank loan, a credit card “loans” money in smaller amounts and on a short-term basis, requiring you to pay the bank back monthly (or be subject to unpleasant penalties and interest fees). The biggest payment networks are MasterCard, VISA and American Express, but do note that merchants may not accept all types.

    How do I apply for a credit card?

    Simply fill out an application online or at a bank branch and submit the required documents such as proof of income. After approval, the bank will inform you about how much you are allowed to borrow and mail you your new credit card. You’ll need to activate the credit card as well as sign on the back.

    What’s the difference between debit cards and credit cards?

    Unlike credit cards, debit cards do not involve any borrowing. They are linked to your bank account, so purchases made on your debit card are paid for by deducting straight from your funds. You must have sufficient funds on hand to use your debit card. If you have a credit card, you can borrow the money for the time being and pay it back later.

    How to prevent credit card fraud?

    There’s no sure-fire way to prevent credit card fraud, so unfortunately holding a credit card also means being vigilant about making sure it doesn’t end up in the wrong hands. Make use of credit card alerts, monitor your transactions closely, be wary of phishing scams and don’t make it easy for others to get hold of your credit card information.

    What should I do with my credit card statement?

    It might not be the most fun thing to read, but it IS super important to understand your credit card statement. So don’t throw it away without checking it. Of course, after reading the statement you will have to pay your bill – typically through online banking, though some people use ATMs, SAMs, AXS machines or go to the bank in person.

    What if I only make the minimum payment on my bill?

    Because credit cards are effectively short-term loans, you are meant to pay off your bills in full every month. If you make only the minimum payment each month, you may accrue huge additional costs on top of your bill due to the credit card’s interest rate (typically 24%+)