Singapore Expats

Best Airline Credit Cards 2018

You know how people always say that the more you travel, the more you understand yourself? And while you do love travelling, practicalities of life often get in the way.

Things like money. Because as much as you would love to travel just on the power of love and fresh air, it really isn’t possible. Thank the heavens, then, for credit cards!

Travel credit cards help you accumulate air miles each time you use your card. Once you have a sufficient amount of air miles, you just need to redeem them for air tickets to the destination of your choice!

So, while the tickets aren’t free (since you are spending on other things), they are still the cheapest way to travel the world in style!

To make sure that your travel dreams come true, here are the best airline credit cards of 2018.

Before we get started, though, here are a few things that you need to know:

What Are Air Miles?

Also known as frequent flyer miles, air miles are a reward that card issuers give you each time you use your credit card. More often than not, you earn these air miles in the form of points. Points are then converted to air miles with selected airline partners.

Are Credit Card Air Miles and Frequent Flyer Miles the Same?

No, they aren’t.

Most credit cards tend to have a number of airline partners. So, you can convert your points to miles with any of their partner carriers.

Frequent flyer miles, on the other hand, are restricted to the frequent flyer programme of one particular airline. So, if you own the American Express Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Credit Card, the air miles you earn can be redeemed only with Singapore Airlines or SilkAir.

Points to Miles Conversion Fee

Unless you own a co-branded credit card like any one of American Express’ KrisFlyer cards, you will be charged a fee to convert the points you own to miles.

Currently, each conversion of points to miles will set you back around S$25. Depending on the bank, though, the amount may be higher or lower.

Now, that the basics are out of the way, here are the best airline credit cards for 2018:

1. BOC Elite Miles World Mastercard

Currently, the best miles card for general spending, the BOC Elite Miles World Mastercard allows you to earn miles on all your spending. And the best part? There is no minimum spend criterion you need to meet!

Earnings on local spends: 1.5 miles per S$1.

Earnings on overseas spends: 3 miles per S$1.

Bonus earnings on local spends: 2 miles per S$1 (valid until 31 December 2018).

Bonus earnings on overseas spends: 5 miles per S$1 (valid until 31 December 2018).

Annual fee: S$190 (waived for the first year).

Cap on rewards: None

Conversion fee: The conversion fee is on the higher side at S$30.

Airline partners: Points can be converted to miles with Singapore Airlines and Air Asia.

2. DBS Woman’s World Card

If you love shopping online, then no other card rewards you as well as DBS’ Woman’s World Card. Here’s what you get with this card:

Earnings on local online spends: 10x DBS Points (equivalent to 20 miles) per S$5 spent.

Earnings on local spends: 1x DBS Point (2 miles) per S$5.

Earnings on overseas online spends: 10x DBS Points (equivalent to 20 miles) for every S$5 spent.

Earnings on overseas spends: 3x (6 miles) DBS Points per S$5.

Annual fee: S$192.60 (1-year fee waiver).

Cap on rewards: 10x DBS Points is valid only on the first S$2,000 spent each calendar month.

Conversion fee: S$25

Airline partners: Singapore Airlines, SilkAir, Air Asia, and Asia Miles partners. This includes airlines such as Cathay Pacific, British Airways, and Lufthansa among others.

3. Citi PremierMiles Visa Card

The Citi PremierMiles Visa Card is made to reward people who love to travel! If you are a new Citi cardholder, you get 30,000 Citi Miles when you sign up for the card and spend S$7,500 within the first 3 months of card approval (until 31 October 2018).

You also get 10,000 Citi Miles each time you renew your membership.

And the best bit? Your Citi Miles never expire! So, you can save up and then convert them to air miles with the airline of your choice for a holiday you have always dreamt of!

Earnings on local spends: 1.2 Citi Miles per S$1.

Earnings on overseas spends (foreign currency spends): 2 Citi Miles per S$1.

Promotional earnings: All of these offers are valid until 31 December 2018.

  • 7 Citi Miles per S$1 spent on Agoda.
  • 3 Citi Miles per S$1 spent on Expedia.
  • 10 Citi Miles per S$1 spent on Kaligo.

Annual fee: S$192.60 (waived for 1 year).

Cap on rewards: None

Conversion fee: S$25

Airline partners: Singapore Airlines, Asia Miles partners, British Airways Executive Club, Etihad Guest, Garuda Indonesia, and Qantas among others.

4. UOB PRVI Miles

For the longest time, the UOB PRVI Miles Card has been the go-to card for most Singaporeans looking for a card that caters to all their travel-related needs. And looking at the benefits of this card, you will soon understand why!

From complimentary travel insurance up to S$1 million to no minimum spend requirement, this card has it all!

There are three versions of the PRVI Miles Card – The UOB PRVI Miles Visa Card, the UOB PRVI Miles Mastercard, and the UOB PRVI Miles American Express Card. There is no difference is how many miles you can earn per dollar with any of these cards, though.

Earnings on local spends: 1.4 miles per S$1 spent.

Earnings on overseas spends: 2.4 miles per S$1 spent in foreign currencies.

Promotional earnings:

  • 6 miles per S$1 spent on hotel and flight bookings on Expedia (valid on bookings made until 31 April 2019 and for stays until 31 July 2019).
  • 6 miles per S$1 spent on Agoda (until 31 December 2018).
  • 6 miles per S$1 spent on airline bookings made on UOB Travel (valid until 31 December 2018).

Exclusive to American Express: UOB PRVI Miles American Express Card holders receive 20,000 loyalty miles if the minimum annual spend of S$50,000 is met.

Annual fee: S$256.80 (waived for the first year).

Cap on rewards: None

Conversion fee: S$25

Airline partners: Singapore Airlines, SilkAir, and Asia Miles partner airlines.

5. American Express Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Credit Card

If you are a frequent flyer and Singapore Airlines is your preferred airline, why go through the hassle of converting points to miles and having to pay a fee?

Amex’s Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Credit Card rewards you with KrisFlyer miles which are directly credited to your account. So, you don’t have to worry about conversion fees, points that are soon to expire, or orphan points!

The rewards you get with this card are great too, especially if Grab rides are your preferred mode of transport!

Earnings on local spends: 1.1 KrisFlyer miles per S$1.

Earnings on overseas spends: 2 KrisFlyer miles per S$1 spent in a foreign currency in the months of June and December.

Earnings on Grab spends: 3.1 KrisFlyer miles per S$1 spent on Grab rides. This is valid only on the first S$200 you spend each month on Grab.

Annual fee: S$176.55 (1-year fee waiver).

Cap on rewards: No cap

Conversion fee: None

Airline partners: Singapore Airlines and SilkAir.

So, before you plan your next vacation, don’t forget to check out these 5 credit cards to ensure that you make the most of your holiday! Both in terms of fun and, of course, rewards!

15 Nov 2018
Singapore Expats