Some friends have asked me about Savings Account after OCBC revised their bonus interest for 360 Savings Account. No doubt, it is not attractive as before but it is still quite ok. For me, I am using Standard Chartered Bonus$aver World MasterCard Credit Card/Savings Account for earning bonus interest.
For OCBC 360 Savings Account, here are the interest earning tiers.
OCBC 360 Savings Account Interest Tiers
So why I do not use OCBC 360 Savings Account?
I credit my salary to Standard Chartered SuperSalary Current Account which does not require minimum balance and free cheque book for life.
I pay almost all my bills using Credit Cards to maximize my returns and have 0 GIRO arrangement to my Savings/Current Account with Standard Chartered.
Spending SG$500 on Standard Chartered Bonus$aver World MasterCard Credit Card monthly gives me 0.88% interest on my Standard Chartered Bonus$aver Savings Account. (Minimal effort, maximum return. I’m a lazy person. This will earn you just 0.55% interest on OCBC.)
Standard Chartered has nice internet banking and mobile banking application. Their internet banking site is quite plain and simple. Not fanciful like what other banks are moving into but gets job done. Their mobile banking application Breeze is very nice.
BEST INTERNET BANKING TOKEN EVER!
Standard Chartered Bonus$aver World MasterCard Credit Card with Token
Some people may challenge and say Standard Chartered is bad, lousy and ATM hard to find etc. So far I do not have any bad experience with them and their ATM is quite easy to find thanks to ATM5 network. I can use ATMs of Standard Chartered, Citibank, HSBC, Maybank, ANZ and some other small banks. Very little queue at these ATMs is also a huge plus point.
You are now studying in Polytechnic/University or just started your first job and want to get your first credit card but do not earn more than SG$30,000 per annum? You can and there are options available: Credit cards with SG$500 credit limit.
Well, SG$500 credit limit may not seems much. But these cards served me well when I started on credit cards. They helped me in building up a good credit discipline and increase my spending power when combined.
So here are 2 credit cards that I started on with SG$500 credit limit each long time ago.
Age requirement: 18 years old minimum at time of application. (21 years old for other credit cards usually.)
Nationality: Singaporean or Singapore Permanent Resident. (Foreigners on employment pass allowed with higher annual income required usually for other credit cards.)
Parent/Guardian consent required for applicant age below 21 at time of registration.
Must not be a principal credit card/credit line holder.
Non student: Minimum SG$18,000 income per annum. (Standard Chartered Manhattan Platinum MasterCard. Usually SG$30,000 minimum for other credit cards.)
What is required when applying for credit cards:
Photocopy of NRIC/Passport.
Computerized payslip (Latest minimum. Recommend to submit 3 months.), Income tax Notice of Assessment or 12 months CPF contribution statement. (Self employed individuals will need to submit more.)
Completed application form.
What to watch out when applying for credit cards:
Annual fee: About SG$30 for these cards. (Usually 1st year waived. Subsequent waiver at bank’s discretion.)
Credit limit: SG$500. (Usually 2-4x of your monthly income at bank’s discretion for other credit cards.)
Interest rate: About 24% per annum or a minimum amount as stipulated by bank. (Interest can be scary and you will be playing with your credit score if you default. You have been warned.)
Statement date: Please call bank after you received your credit card to know your statement generation/cut off date. (This will help you in planning your purchases.)
Payment grace period: About 20 days. Pay fully within grace period and there will not be any interest charge.
Cash advancement fee: About 6% of amount advanced or a minimum amount as stipulated by bank.
Other fees like late fee or over limit fee which you should never ever need to pay if your credit discipline is good.
How to decide which card to get:
Your spending habit/pattern:
If you are a party guy/gal that frequent Zouk, get Citibank Clear Visa as that credit card offer free entry and 1-for-1 drinks at Zouk.
If you are after cashback, get Standard Chartered Manhattan Platinum MasterCard as that credit card offers 0.25% cashback in this case.
For other credit cards, you will want to look at rewards on offer and flexibility in redeeming rewards.
Bank: If you have any bad blood with any bank or if bank does not has a good reputation, you will not likely want to get a credit card with them. Unless benefit is unrivalled.
Internet banking (Must have!)
SAM (Cut off time 5pm.)
AXS. (Cut off time 8pm.)
Payment network: Usually I recommend 1 Visa, 1 MasterCard and 1 American Express credit card per bank (At least 2 banks. Just in case 1 bank’s cards just all decide to die on you. It can happen!) for maximum acceptance across the globe. (JCB is an exotic 1 for Japan. Only offered by UOB in Singapore.)