Billed as the ultimate credit card for indulgences and an exclusive lifestyle, Visa Infinite is now of one the dream cards most aspiring working adult wants.
With typical features including annual fees that cannot be waived, and minimum annual income of S$120,000 and upwards, Visa Infinite cards in Singapore have managed to keep its prestige as the quintessential credit card for the upper-middle class. We ploughed through the key features of some of the most popular Visa Infinite cards in Singapore, and gave some answers to the question on our mind, “Which Visa Infinite credit card should I be applying?”.
Annual Fee, Welcome Gift and Minimum Annual Income
The low-down: With annual fees ranging from S$488 and above, a Visa Infinite card does not come cheap. And no, these fees cannot be waived to maintain its innate prestige. The most expensive card in the market is HSBC’s, at S$650, although it does come with a 35,000 miles welcome gift.
Panda’s Pick: Based simply on the value of the welcome gifts, the SCB’s Visa Infinite credit card will give you the most value. With average value of one mile at S$0.02 (Note: miles are better valued when you redeem for better class tickets, although that’s another separate discussion altogether), the welcome gift of 35,000 miles be worth the S$588.50 annual fee paid – having not accounted for all the other benefits that come with the card.
Earning of Miles with Local and Overseas Spend
The low-down: Earning miles is perhaps one of the most important perks. The UOB Visa Infinite Metal Card gives you the best mpd for local spend. While SCB does match up at 1.4 mpd, you do have to charge a minimum of S$2,000 in the statement cycle to enjoy this rate.
For overseas spends, SCB does give the most bang for every dollar spend overseas, at 3 mpd. Again, you do have to charge a minimum of S$2,000 in the statement cycle to enjoy this. If this is going to be an issue, the OCBC Voyage Card gets you 2.3 mpd. Although I must say that I am generally not impressed with the mpd of the Visa Infinite cards, as compared to the other miles-centric cards in the market today.
Panda’s Pick: SCB may win on both categories, but the minimum spend is a big turn-off for me. I will go for the OCBC’s Voyage Card, which earns 1.6 mpd for local dining spend and 2.3 mpd for overseas spend.
Card Benefits in Singapore
The low-down: While travel perks are important, we do spend more time in Singapore per year, don’t we? Both the HSBC and SCB cards will pamper you with access to Resorts World Sentosa’s ESPA and Fullerton Hotel’s fitness and spa facilities.
While UOB card does not deliver well on exclusive access to members’ only clubs like the HSBC and SCB VI, its focus is on dining privileges, with exclusive access to Tower Club and China Club. This is further complemented by IHG’s Gourmet Collection membership and dining discounts with Grand Hyatt and Resorts World Sentosa.
If you are an avid golfer, all the cards come with a standard 30% off Green Fees across participating golf clubs in the region.
Panda’s Pick: If you are a foodie, the UOB card will top this category. Although, if you would like to pamper yourself more, the HSBC’s twice monthly access to Resorts World Sentosa’s ESPA (including usage of the swimming pool at Equarius Hotel) is worth every single dollar spent on the annual fee.
Card Benefits for Travelling Perks
The low-down: Having a Visa Infinite card ought to elevate your travel experience. All four VI cards comes with complimentary airport lounge access, although they are definitely not made equal. Both HSBC and OCBC offer unlimited complimentary visits for you and your partner, and I view that nothing beats unlimited access and the deal is further sweetened when that extends to your travelling partner as well.
While all the cards have partnerships with Visa Luxury Hotel Collection, SCB and OCBC step it up further with exclusive discounts and deals with major hotel chains.
And if it matters, each of the card has some other perks to entice sign-ups. UOB offers you complimentary Keyyes membership and unlimited Singtel’s ReadyRoam plan, whereas HSBC and OCBC gets you complimentary limousine transfers with qualifying spends monthly.
Panda’s Pick: HSBC gets my vote here, as Priority Pass has a more global lounge presence, as compared with Plaza Premium which OCBC partners. Having said that, across all four cards, the hotel partnership and other fringe benefits are not as imaginative as I would expect a premium credit card would offer.
So, which Visa Infinite credit card should I get?
This is frankly a rather subjective question, and the card you should apply for ought to complement your lifestyle best.
UOB Visa Infinite Card focuses strongly on being the choice businessman card. With very credible dining privileges and partnership tie-ups, and its exclusive access to members’ only clubs such as Tower Club and China Club in Singapore, along with complimentary Keyyes membership and unlimited Singtel ReadyRoam plan for the cardholder, this fits the lifestyle of the busy jet-setting professionals.
HSBC Visa Infinite Credit Card allows you to “buy” 35,000 miles and enjoy the privileges that comes with the card. And with twice monthly access to Resorts World Sentosa’s ESPA and unlimted complimentary visits to Priority Pass airport lounges for you and your partner, this is the card for you to pamper yourself well.
SCB Visa Infinite Credit Card is for the miles chaser. With 35,000 miles as welcome gift for just S$588.50 p.a., and if your monthly expenses exceed S$2,000, you get to enjoy 1.4 mpd for local spend and 3.0 mpd for overseas spend. Complimentary access to Fullerton Hotel’s fitness facilities, and credible partnership with hotels for stays and dining makes the card a must for the comfort creatures.
OCBC Voyage Card is the most accessible VI card with the lowest annual fee and minimum annual income requirements. It has a credible miles rewards programme, and unlimited complimentary visits to airport lounges for you and your partner.
For the Panda, the obvious choice will be the HSBC Visa Infinite Credit Card and the SCB Visa Infinite Credit Card. So please do not be surprised to spot the pandas at Resorts World Sentosa’s ESPA or Fullerton Hotel’s gym!
Ranted by The Rantee
P.S. This is not a sponsored article.