One credit card we don’t talk about much on the site is the Standard Chartered Rewards+ card. That’s mainly because it’s just not very good, with limited opportunities to earn the top rate of 2.9 mpd (or 4 mpd) compared to the increased competition in this sector from the other banks including Citi and HSBC.
The Standard Chartered Rewards+ card is certainly a lacklustre option compared to the 4 mpd competition on the market. It earns 10x Rewards Points on foreign currency spend (i.e. any transaction not in SGD) and 5x Rewards Points on local (SGD) dining transactions, with a lousy 20,000 Rewards Points cap per card anniversary year.
Is it 2.9 mpd or 4 mpd?
What you earn with the Rewards+ card in terms of equivalent miles per dollar is based on whether you also hold the Standard Chartered Visa Infinite or Standard Chartered X Card.
That’s because your 360° Rewards Points ‘pool’ between your Standard Chartered cards, and Visa Infinite cardholders can transfer to KrisFlyer miles at a better transfer ratio of 2.5:1, instead of 3.44:1.
|X Card and/or SCVI cardholder?|
|FCY Spend||4 mpd||2.9 mpd|
|Local Dining||2 mpd||1.45 mpd|
As you can see this card is really of little interest to miles chasers who aren’t also Visa Infinite cardholders, and even then there are a host of better 4 mpd alternatives in Singapore.
The 20,000 Rewards Points bonus cap per year effectively limits your annual spend in the bonus category to:
- S$5,000 on local dining, or
- S$2,222 on FCY spend
In this example all the Points shown in the top right of the screenshot are combined across your Standard Chartered credit cards accrual. The rewards portal allows you to transfer all of them into KrisFlyer miles at the superior 2.5:1 ratio, because you hold at least one Visa Infinite card with the bank.
If you’re new to the Standard Chartered Rewards+ card, or have not held one in the last 12 months, apply between now and 31st March 2021 to be entitled to two additional bonus miles categories for any spend charged to the card between now and 31st March 2021.
- Additional Shopping Rewards Points: Up to 4 mpd for online department store, clothes and shoes
- Additional Grocery Rewards Points: Up to 4 mpd for online supermarket and food delivery spend
The rewards points in these bonus categories are awarded as follows:
- 1 Rewards Point for every S$1 spent as usual with the Rewards+ card
- 9 Additional Rewards Points for every S$1 spent in the eligible categories
The offer is capped at S$2,222 of eligible spend, combined across the two bonus categories during the promotion (20,000 Additional Rewards Points), which is a maximum of 8,000 bonus miles at the 4 mpd earn rate.
This is an additional cap over and above the regular annual 20,000 Rewards Points cap per card anniversary year for spend with the Rewards+ card in the overseas retail, dining and travel categories. That means you can continue to work towards that separate limit during your first year with the card as normal.
Additional Shopping Rewards
This category refers to online spend in the department stores, clothes and shoes categories, defined by the following Merchant Category Codes (MCCs):
- 5137: Men’s, Women’s and Children’s Uniforms
- 5139: Commercial Footwear
- 5311: Department Stores
- 5611: Men’s & Boys’ Clothing and Accessory Stores
- 5621: Women’s Ready-to-Wear Stores
- 5631: Women’s Accessory and Specialty Stores
- 5641: Children’s and Infants’ Wear Stores
- 5651: Family Clothing Stores
- 5655: Sports and Riding Apparel Stores
- 5661: Shoe Stores
- 5691: Men’s and Women’s Clothing Stores
- 5697: Tailors, Seamstresses, Mending, Alterations
- 5698: Wig & Toupee Shops
- 5699: Miscellaneous Apparel and Accessory Stores
- 5948: Luggage and Leather Goods Stores
This includes merchants like Robinsons, Lazada, TANGS and Zara.
Additional Grocery Rewards
This category refers to online spend at supermarkets, defined by the following MCCs:
- 5310: Discount Stores
- 5331: Variety Stores
- 5399: Misc. General Merchandise
- 5411: Grocery Stores and Supermarkets
- 5499: Miscellaneous & Specialty Retail Stores
This includes online spend at Fairprice, Redmart and Cold Storage. It should also include online food delivery services like Deliveroo, foodpanda and WhyQ (MCC 5499).
When will you get your points?
A big downside of this promotion is that you’ll originally be credited only 1 Rewards Point per S$1 spent for the bonus category transactions.
The additional Rewards Points from the shopping and grocery components will be calculated after 30th April 2021 and will be credited to your rewards account by 30th June 2021.
The terms and conditions document for this promotion states 30th April 2020 and 30th June 2020 respectively for these dates, but we assume that’s a typo.
Terms and conditions
Full terms and conditions for this new customer sign-up can be found on the Standard Chartered website here. Do read those carefully as there is a list of excluded transactions.
If you’re already an SCVI or X Card customer, this offer for the Rewards+ card is a relatively easy way to earn an additional 8,000 miles between now and March 2021, in addition to the usual 8,000 miles annual cap for the other bonus spend categories.
If you’re not an SCVI or X Card customer, it’s only worth 2.9 mpd at best (5,800 miles), with a range of better 4 mpd cards to use for online / shopping spend and contactless transactions in some cases for physical payments too, so this offer is unlikely to be of much interest.
That’s especially true given the long time window you’ll have to wait for the bonus points to be credited to your account (then cross your fingers the transactions all processed under the correct MCCs!).
If you are interested in signing up, remember to wait at least 12 months since cancelling your Rewards+ card (assuming you had one before). There is also an S$80 cashback signup gift on offer, which is valid in conjunction with this ‘New to Rewards+ Spend’ offer.
The Standard Chartered Rewards+ card is fee-free for the first two years. Full details for this card are available here.
(Cover Photo: Shutterstock)