The OCBC 90°N credit cards in Singapore, which come in either a Visa or Mastercard version, are largely regarded as a decent general spend option for those happy to credit to KrisFlyer miles, now earning 1.3 mpd on local spend and 2.1 mpd on overseas transactions.
The cards currently boast no fee in year one, and a S$54 annual fee each year after that, though no miles are offered at renewal, and annual fee waiver is typically easy to obtain with this one, if you ask.
50,000 miles renewal offer
OCBC has a new offer for existing 90°N cardholders at annual renewal, with 50,000 90°N miles credited to your rewards account when you voluntarily pay an additional S$1,080, on top of the S$54 annual renewal fee.
Given that fee waiver with this card is easy to obtain, that means you’re effectively paying S$1,134 for the 50,000 miles benefit (S$1,080 + S$54), or 2.27 cents per mile.
To be eligible for the Annual Service Fee Option, you’ll need to apply for the fee upgrade, following which OCBC will process the benefit within 14 days.
As many of you will know, OCBC has offered similar miles purchase deals at annual renewal through its Voyage card, with 15,000 miles for a $492.50 annual fee (3.28 cents/mile) or 150,000 miles for a $3,240 annual fee (2.16 cents/mile).
The card even offered a 500,000 miles bonus option for a $10,000 annual fee, however this was withdrawn in August 2018, though in all cases these have only been credited directly to KrisFlyer, and cannot be held as Voyage miles.
Terms and conditions
Full terms and conditions for this offer are available here:
90°N miles might get interesting… eventually!
The interesting part of this deal isn’t the cost per mile, which is clearly way above what you should be considering since you likely won’t be able to guarantee 2.27+ cents of value per mile from the KrisFlyer programme.
The interesting part is that the miles can be held at the 90°N rewards side in this case, which means that their three-year expiry clock in KrisFlyer won’t immediately start ticking (90°N miles never expire) and that you may be able to convert into eight other loyalty programmes, if OCBC ever gets its act together and adds these long-promised partnerships.
Despite currently only transferring to KrisFlyer miles, eight new hotel and airline transfer partners will also be added to the card’s repertoire, eventually…
- Accor Live Limitless
- Air France-KLM Flying Blue
- British Airways Executive Club (and indirectly, Qatar Airways Privilege Club)
- Cathay Pacific
- Etihad Guest
- IHG One Rewards
- Marriott Bonvoy
- United MileagePlus
Problem is, these were promised by 31st December 2022, then again by 28th February 2023, and are now simply listed as “coming soon”!
The critical transfer ratios from 90°N miles into these programmes have also not yet been announced, so the implementation has turned into a bit of a debacle!
However, if and when these programmes do come on board, 50,000 90°N miles from this voluntary annual free top-up will no longer only be good for KrisFlyer miles, but also some interesting currencies like Avios and Asia Miles too, where (depending on the all-important transfer ratios) you may be able to achieve better value.
It’s still unlikely to make this annual fee deal a good one, unless some magical transfer ratios are offered, but once the option is available it will be worth checking.
OCBC 90°N cards have an interesting sign-up offer
As we recently reported, OCBC is currently offering a 25,500 miles sign-up bonus for its 90°N cards, with the gift credited upfront, but then requiring S$15,000 spend in the first six months (equivalent to S$2,500 per month) in order to keep it.
Some customers have also been targeted for the opportunity to buy miles at 1.64 to 1.67 cents each with this card during May and June 2023, though a large minimum spend is required.
OCBC is offering 50,000 miles on annual renewal with its 90°N cards, if you part with a hefty S$1,134 annual fee instead of the usual S$54.
That’s unattractive since you’re effectively buying miles at 2.27 cents each, but it’s one to keep an eye on because instead of being transferred directly to KrisFlyer these can be held as 90°N miles, which never expire and will pick up a range of new transfer partners… at some stage anyway!
(Cover Photo: Robert Bye)