Annual fees on credit cards are now a way of life. Sure, there are still good cards out there which don’t have an annual fee, but in our experience, the very best premium cards available to customers in Singapore come with fees of anything up to and over three hundred dollars.
Now, for some people, a S$300 fee is a lot of money, but if your lifestyle is one that can afford this outlay, then it could still be a sound investment, just as long as you balance the fee against the benefits you get in return.
That means it is up to you, the cardholder, to judge carefully whether your credit card is worth the annual outlay. You’ve got to make sure that the benefits outweigh the costs.
On top of that, you’ve got to actually make sure that you’ll even use these benefits. If your card comes with – say –a use of a VIP lounge at airports, you might want to think twice if you’re not a frequent flier, because you’re essentially paying for somebody else’s awesome flight experience!
So, what should you look for?
A popular addition is free insurance, particularly on travel cards. If you’re not paying for insurance elsewhere, check out the free cover you’re being offered to check it covers everything you need.
The good news, if you’re the kind of person who uses their card a lot, there are plenty of deals out there which mean that the fee-paying card holder gets his money back very quickly indeed.
Looking at current offers on the Singapore market, you see the likes of the DBS Visa Platinum Credit Card, a premium card with a S$192.60 annual fee. Some customers might think twice before applying as that’s on the high end of average, but in return, the benefits are superb. If you dine out often, the DBS card offers up to 50% off dining experiences, plus points for every $5 spent.
On top of that, DBS also offers deals on health care that you might not get elsewhere. Certainly worth a look.
Al the low end of average, AmEx offers the Rewards Card at just s$53.50 per year, with modest savings on a range of activities, including cinemas and hotels. They also offer S$100 worth of points as a welcome gift, meaning your card is effectively free for the first two years.
Our advice is this: Research the deals available before you apply, and go for the cards where you know you are certain to use the offers. Check out the small print for hidden fees, and whether offers are likely to be withdrawn. Most importantly get the card that’s right for you.
Article by Jason Taylor – [email protected]