Hello! I assume that you found your way here because you were somewhat googling about credit cards or the UOB One Card, so I shall skip the reason for signing up for a credit card but focus on why this card.
But before I start, let me ask you 3 simple questions.
1. Do you spend at least S$500 a month?
2. Do you have varied spending (different categories) every month?
3. Do you monitor your spending regularly?
If your answer is yes to all, you have to sign up for the card
now after you finish reading this!
If your answer is no, you can still read on of course. I’m so gonna psycho you muahaha.. By the way I don’t earn a single cent from your sign-up, just wanna share a good deal (=
So, here are the 5 reasons..
1. It has the best rebates.
Trust me, (I was an engineer) and my friend, who is still an engineer and she is damn good at fishing out such deals. Which other card gives you 5% rebate on nearly all your purchases (nearly because instalment plans are not included and they recently excluded transactions to charities and government organisations too)?! Yes, there are conditions to fulfill of course but if you are already spending that amount of money, why not right?
Spending S$500 or S$1000 a month for 3 months (check the month on your card, if it is Jun, your 3 months will be Jun, Jul, Aug then Sep, Oct Nov etc.) earns you 3.3% rebate i.e. S$50 or S$100 (for 3 months) whereas clocking S$2000 per month for a quarter gives you 5%(!!) rebate, which is S$300! Not bad right? For doing nothing.
Ok, I’m not asking you to spend just to earn the rebate. Remember my first question to you? It is a damn good card if you are already spending so much. Come to think of it, spending S$500 is not difficult at all lor. Especially if you have a family. For me, I applied for a supplementary card for my brother to pump petrol (more details on this in point 3 below) and also
force beg my parents to use the supp card for weekly groceries. We can easily hit S$1k already.
Anyway I’m a sucker for cash rebate (I’m lazy to redeem points and the rewards are usually vouchers which I don’t use) so I usually go for cards with cash rebate. I used to think that the Manhattan Card (3% on huge and i mean HUGEEE purchases) and OCBC 365 (6% cashback on dining on weekends) were good until the former changed their reward scheme and I scrutinised the latter’s bill.
If I have to spend S$3000 to get 3% rebate (Manhattan Card), I jolly well spend S$500 to get 3.3% right? And the 6% rebate on dining (OCBC365 Card) never came because I never did spend the minimum of S$600 because I would split my spending to different cards because their rebates for different categories are different! And of course, the 6% is only on the amount I spent on dining in restaurants. How much can you spend? (I’m a fan of hawker food.) But let’s say you hit about S$300 a month, 6% is only S$18. And there is a cap of S$80 on the rebates. You get the drift.
Now we come to the important point. The catch is that once you hit S$500, S$1000 or S$2000 for that month, you should stop using this card (and use another card instead, nobody says you can only use one card right? Though I’m asking you to use ONE card.. hahahaha) already because spending S$500 and S$999 earn you the same amount of rebate. Be sure to check your credit card statement regularly to see if you have spent enough. (Or if you are short of a few hundred dollars, I have tips on what you can do to get that rebate below.) Note that the bill may not necessarily follow the calendar month. e.g. my bill starts on 24th and ends on 23rd.
The rebate will be credited automatically in the 4th month and offset your bill for that month.
2. You can combine the spending of your supplementary cards.
As mentioned earlier, you can combine all the spending of the main card and supp card, very useful for me! But note that only the first supp card is free.
3. 20% off petrol upfront
A lot of drivers (especially private hire ones, I used to be one too but that’s another story for another time) always ask, how to get the best petrol deal ar? Now that Uber is gone I’m not sure if the Esso fleet card is still applicable but let’s just assume it’s for your own consumption.
With UOB one card and SPC card, when I pump S$60 (my tank is small), I only pay S$48. That’s 20% off upfront. The actual discount is 15% + S$3 off for every S$60 spent. So to maximise the discount, I always pump S$60. If you have a bigger tank you can pump S$120 (multiples of S$60). So I usually wait till the tank is almost empty. If you are short by a little, you can always grab some candy or drinks or snacks to make up the amount. Usually the friendly staff will remind you.
This is much more than the 14% discount I used to get from using Citibank Cash Back Card + Esso Smiles Card. The 14% was upfront and even though it was always advertised as “up to 20.88% off”, I never got the remaining 6.88% because I never did manage to hit the minimum spend of *googles away* S$888.
4. You can literally just use one card.
Yes, too many puns I know. But seriously, because the rebate is on almost everything, you don’t need to think which card to use for which type of purchase – all use one card. Until you hit your target. It’s easier to track your expenses too.
5. You learn to do advanced planning.
This is something more indirect. But it helped me to maximise my savings. Since the rebates are based on each quarter, it only makes sense to spend the same tier each month right? So I will plan my purchases in advance.
For example my last quarter i.e. Dec, Jan & Feb. It was the festive season I know sure spend alot one. So I targeted S$2k per month. I asked the whole family, any big purchases? And my bro said he had to pay the balance for his Korea trip, about $2k.. GAO DIM! But need at least 5 transactions per month – easy-peasy, because we sure need to pump petrol, and my child sponsorship payment is recurring. So, Dec was practically effortless!
Then came Jan, we bought furniture from Ikea and CNY clothes (plus alot of other purchases) – we staggered this because Dec enough liao mah. This kind can plan one right. So by shifting your purchases around, you can maximise the rebates. But if really cannot wait, then bo bian lor, use your next best card – if it is online purchase I will use DBS Live Fresh (but need minimum S$700 to get 5% rebate) or AMEX Cashback (1.5% on everything, no minimum spend, immediate cash back that month). There are better cards but i don’t have so many cards lah.
For Feb, it was Chinese New Year, so very easy to spend S$2k on food, drinks and gifts.
After that, in March, I realised that I had nothing more to buy liao. Then I just target S$500 for the next 3 months (Mar, Apr May) lor. And so, when my dad asked when I want to change air-con (for the whole house), my immediate response was June! And then I started thinking of what else I can buy in July and August. It becomes a habit… hehe
Lastly, on what you can do if you are short of a few hundred dollars (check your statement regularly so that you know your shortfall early enough to do something, DON’T LEAVE IT TO FATE!):
- Offer to pay (first) using your card during dinner gatherings. Or you can give them a treat to earn brownie points too.
- Stock up on necessities that have long shelf life, preferably also on offer. e.g toiletries, undergarment, socks etc.
- Buy NTUC/Giant/Capitamall vouchers – this is especially useful if your supp card is shared among a few people. When my bro or I forget to pass our parents the card on their grocery day, they can then use the voucher. Or during months when your quota is already filled, then just use the vouchers.
- “Pay” your loved one via paypal, and get him/her to cash out the money. There is an admin charge of 3.9% though but you are getting 5% rebate. Still worth it.
So, if you agree with all that I mentioned or have similar spending habits as me, perhaps you could do yourself a favour by applying for this card to ride on the rebates. If you have any questions or anything to share, feel free to drop us a message here. (=
P/S: Will write about UOB One Account next time.