Back in May this year, Standard Chartered revamped its X Card as an entry-level S$30k income product called the Journey Credit Card, with a S$30,000 income requirement (down from S$80,000), and a more palatable S$194.40 annual fee, waivable in year one – a more typical lineup for an entry-level general spend option in Singapore.
As part of the rebrand the bank also launched a new sign-up bonus for the Journey Card, marketed as “up to 45,000 miles” for new-to-bank customers.
The deal was originally slated to run until the end of September 2023, but as many of our readers will know Standard Chartered has no qualms about pulling the rug on deals like this whenever it sees fit, and the sign-up bonus for the Journey Card is no exception.
Deal now ends on 6th August 2023
Standard Chartered has now revealed that the sign-up bonus for this new card will be ending on 6th August 2023, eight weeks earlier than first planned, which means you’ll need to have submitted your application by 11.59pm on Sunday this week at the latest in order to be eligible.
Here’s how the deal was advertised on the website and in the bank’s terms and conditions until 31st July 2023:
And here’s how then it looked from 1st August 2023:
This is nothing new for Standard Chartered. Many of our readers will recall the bank cutting short its 100,000 miles sign-up bonus for the X Card, the Journey’s predecessor, by over a month, with only a single days notice.
The nearly six-week original promotion had lasted only one week, and with less than 24 hours warning, voila – a 100,000 miles bonus had become 60,000 miles.
How the Journey sign-up bonus works
If you’re a new-to-bank credit card customer with Standard Chartered, which means not having an existing principal credit card with the bank and also not having done so in the last 12 months from the date of application, you’ll be eligible for this Journey Card sign-up bonus.
The key draw here is bonus earning of +5 mpd on the first S$5,000 spend using the card within the first 30 days of approval.
That’s on top of the card’s general 1.2 mpd local earn rate, 2 mpd FCY earn rate, or 3 mpd bonus category, so the actual earning is up to 8 mpd for at least some transactions, if you’re able to channel your spending the right way.
Here’s how Standard Chartered outlines the deal as an “up to 45,000 miles” one.
Journey Card Up to 45K Miles Acquisition Promotion
|Bonus Category||Reward Points||Equivalent KrisFlyer Miles|
|Voluntary Payment of First Year Annual Fee
|Bonus 5 mpd on the first S$5,000 spend in the first 30 days||Up to
|Bonus if all S$5,000 spend is made in FCY||Up to
The first element of the bonus is only for voluntarily paying the year one annual card fee of S$194.40, which is waived if you wish.
At 1.94 cents per mile, it’s probably too much to be paying just for the additional miles alone.
The bonus 5 mpd on the first S$5,000 spend in the first 30 days of card membership is the true bonus here, worth up to 25,000 additional miles.
The third element outlined by Standard Chartered are miles you would earn anyway for making all the spend in FCY at 2 mpd, but remember the card’s 1.2 mpd / 2 mpd / 3 mpd base earning still applies on top of the 5 mpd bonus, so these are just regular miles.
|Spend Category||Regular Earn||Including 5 mpd Bonus|
|Local spend||1.2 mpd||6.2 mpd|
|FCY spend||2 mpd||7 mpd|
|Online transport, food delivery and grocery spend*||3 mpd*||8 mpd*|
* Up to a maximum spend of S$1,000 per statement month, so not all your S$5,000 spend can be in this category.
For example, if you make the following S$5,000 spend in the first 30 days of card membership:
- S$1,000 in online grocery shopping @ 3 mpd
= 3,000 base miles + 5,000 bonus miles = 8,000 miles (8 mpd)
- S$3,000 in local spend @ 1.2 mpd
= 3,600 base miles + 15,000 bonus miles = 18,600 miles (6.2 mpd)
- S$1,000 in FCY spend @ 2 mpd
= 2,000 base miles + 5,000 bonus miles = 7,000 miles (7 mpd)
In total this is 33,600 miles for S$5,000 spend (6.72 mpd equivalent), but as you can see it still only 25,000 bonus miles whatever you do, the rest you would earn anyway in these spend categories with the Journey card.
Bonus miles for this deal are credited as follows:
|Journey Card approval month:||Bonus miles credited by:|
|May 2023||31st July 2023|
|June 2023||31st August 2023|
|July 2023||30th September 2023|
|August 2023||31st October 2023|
If you wish to pay the first year annual fee of S$194.40, you’ll net an additional 10,000 bonus miles compared to the example outlined above, within 60 working days (around 12 weeks) of card activation.
The latest terms and conditions for the sign-up offer, including the new shortened application window, are available here.
About the Journey Card
Since its brand switch from the X Card, the Journey Card retails an uncapped 1.2 mpd for local spend and 2 mpd for overseas spend, while two complimentary Priority Pass lounge visits per year also remain part of the deal.
The card also retains 10 loyalty programme transfer partners including KrisFlyer, though the transfer ratios to many of these (e.g. Qatar Privilege Club) are not attractive and mean earning less than the advertised mpd rates.
One new feature of the card is a new 3 mpd bonus spend category, for online transport, online food delivery and online grocery shopping, running between now and the end of 2023.
Like most bonus earn rates, this is capped at S$1,000 spend per statement month.
Registration is not required – all Journey cardholders are eligible (including existing X Card members). Eligible online spend by MCC with example merchants are provided below.
- Grocery/food-stores with MCCs 5411, 5462, 5499 and 5921
(E.g. NTUC FairPrice Online, NTUC FairPrice app, Lazada Redmart, Watson’s Singapore and Nespresso Singapore)
- Food deliveries with MCCs 5811, 5812 and 5814
(E.g. Foodpanda, Deliveroo, McDonald’s, KFC, Pizza Hut, Dominos Pizza, Chilli Api Catering and Qi Ji Catering)
- Transport merchants with MCCs 4111, 4121, 4411 and 4789
(E.g.Grab, Gojek, Cabcharge Asia, Tada, Ryde Technologies, Royal Caribbean Cruises and Easybook.com)
This bonus may be useful if you’re already maxing out the various 4 mpd or 6 mpd limits on your other credit cards for online spend in these categories.
Full terms and conditions for the offer are available here (see Part 2).
Zero-fee FCY transactions
The Journey Card also offers zero FCY fee for overseas spend made and posted in the months of:
- June 2023
- July 2023
- November 2023
- December 2023
Obviously the first two months no longer help you here if you didn’t hold the card and use it for FCY purchases back then, and unfortunately the November and December 2023 periods won’t combine with the 5 mpd sign-up bonus since the deal is ending early and the spend for that one must be made in the first 30 days.
This deal offers you full cashback on the bank’s steep 3.5% FCY fee for overseas transactions made during these months.
Cashback will be credited to your card account as follows.
|Eligible FCY transactions made and posted:||Cashback credited by:|
|1 Jun – 31 Jul 2023||30th September 2023|
|1 Nov – 31 Dec 2023||29th February 2024|
This is actually a good deal – an uncapped 2 mpd on FCY transactions for spend in four months with no additional fees, even though you can’t now combine it with the sign-up bonus.
Let’s hope Standard Chartered repeats this for Journey cardholders in subsequent years.
Full terms and conditions for this promotion are available here.
When Standard Chartered offers a credit card sign-up bonus, two things you can never be sure of based on the bank’s well-documented past behaviour are that the deal will actually run as long as first promised, or that it won’t be devalued into a poorer offer.
Back in May the launch of the Journey Card came with a decent sign-up bonus, but once again the knife is being wielded and eight weeks is being quietly knocked off the promotion duration.
The good news is there are still three days to apply and potentially benefit if you’re a new-to-bank customer, which could still see you get 5 bonus miles per dollar on top of the card’s regular earn rates, for up to S$5,000 spend in the first 30 days.
That’s good for up to 7 mpd or even 8 mpd in some categories.
Be sure to apply by 11.59pm on Sunday 6th August 2023 if you’re eligible and interested in this one.
|Annual fee: $194.40/yr
Local earn rate: 1.2 mpd
FCY earn rate: 2 mpd
Bonus earn rate: 3 mpd
Lounge access: 2 per year
FCY fee: 3.5%
Min. age: 21
Min. income: $30,000/yr
|25,000 miles when you spend
(Cover Photo: Tom Bixler)