Best Star Alliance credit cards for Singapore?

11 Discussions

phileas.fogg

United Airlines - Mileage Plus

Member since 11 Feb 2018

Total posts 6

Hi all. I'm moving to Singapore soon. Any advice on the best cards for a Star Alliance flyer based there? I think I probably don't want to be locked into KrisFlyer, because redemption is so bad, but it would be good to have the option. Might transfer my Amex card, but don't want to miss out on any signing bonuses that I could get with Amex there. Welcome advice.

(Also, any forums like this that you'd recommend?)


Fogg

whoppersandwich

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 11 Dec 2017

Total posts 115

If you’ve got status in another program United may still be running their status match which I found very easy to take advantage of.

twkgill

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 17 Jul 2015

Total posts 18

Citi PremierMiles Visa is good here. Citi points don't expire and can be transferred to a number of airline programs. Fairly decent earn rates compared to others on the market. Plus its eligible for those on an Employment Pass, which some local cards are not.

346

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 10 May 2017

Total posts 52

What about Amex? Platinum Charge.

Lost_in_SIN

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 20 May 2016

Total posts 29

Hi, I moved to Singapore a few years ago and I have the UOB Privi Miles MasterCard. I find this card to be really good - 1.2 miles per $ in SG and 2.4 miles per $ overseas. Credit card market in Singapore is really competitive with many locals holding multiple cards.


If you travel overseas a lot the points add up really quickly with UOB. They also consistently waive the annual fee each year through an automated phone process. The miles can be converted into Asia Miles (Cathay Pacific / One World) or KrisFlyer (Singapore / Star Alliance).

Last editedby Lost_in_SIN at Aug 17, 2018, 12:42 PM.

phileas.fogg

United Airlines - Mileage Plus

Member since 11 Feb 2018

Total posts 6

Thanks, these suggestions are helpful. Two follow-on questions:


1) Does anyone have any experience transferring an Amex from one jurisdiction to another? Are there any advantages to doing so? Wouldn't I give up any initial MR bonus that I would otherwise get by opening a new Amex card in Singapore?


2) Are there any bonus offers on at the moment that are particularly notable? I've been using a lot of points lately, so need to restock.


Fogg

Last editedby David at Aug 18, 2018, 10:58 AM.

jch

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

Member since 15 Nov 2017

Total posts 142

Summary of options (some already mentioned) for FF programs:
SQ - via amex Platinum Card Shortcut
UA - status match (can be done from QF/VA)
VA - still get priority and lounge benefits with SQ

I'm also considering starting to put my Star Alliance points to Asiana with the two-year earn period and 500k miles for lifetime gold (vs United 1m).

ChrisCh

Member since 24 Apr 2012

Total posts 1,024

1) Does anyone have any experience transferring an Amex from one jurisdiction to another? Are there any advantages to doing so? Wouldn't I give up any initial MR bonus that I would otherwise get by opening a new Amex card in Singapore?

I've looked into it, mainly just because I saw the option online and was curious how it worked, and what happens is that your card isn't really 'transferred', as such: more so that your Australian credit history and your existing customer profile are taken into account when assessing your new application - so rather than applying cold as a brand new customer with zero credit history in the new country (which makes things tricky), the fact that you've been a cardholder for X years, have a good repayment history and don't have any red flags on your Australian credit report could help your chances of approval overseas. Your Australian card isn't automatically closed when you open a new one overseas, so you can choose to close it or keep it open (or for a credit card, perhaps move it to a no-annual-fee card to keep your Australian credit limit alive if you plan on returning). Not financial advice, of course, but just what seemed to be the case!

mspcooper

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 09 May 2013

Total posts 311

1) Does anyone have any experience transferring an Amex from one jurisdiction to another? Are there any advantages to doing so? Wouldn't I give up any initial MR bonus that I would otherwise get by opening a new Amex card in Singapore?

I've looked into it, mainly just because I saw the option online and was curious how it worked, and what happens is that your card isn't really 'transferred', as such: more so that your Australian credit history and your existing customer profile are taken into account when assessing your new application - so rather than applying cold as a brand new customer with zero credit history in the new country (which makes things tricky), the fact that you've been a cardholder for X years, have a good repayment history and don't have any red flags on your Australian credit report could help your chances of approval overseas. Your Australian card isn't automatically closed when you open a new one overseas, so you can choose to close it or keep it open (or for a credit card, perhaps move it to a no-annual-fee card to keep your Australian credit limit alive if you plan on returning). Not financial advice, of course, but just what seemed to be the case!

I transferred my Amex from the US into australia. They cancelled my American Amex and gave me a new one, but with a lot lower credit limit (Which i was able to increase every 6 months). The membership origin year is maintained, membership points were transferred over. However, this was in 2004. They used to provide discounts on redemptions based on history (lesser points for long term members, but i have’nt seen this recently).

Soon

SilkAir - KrisFlyer

Member since 07 Dec 2017

Total posts 14

Good morning Fogg

Regarding your question - Also, any forums like this that you'd recommend?, you might want to look through
1) milelion.com
2) mainlymiles.com
Both are run predominantly by local Singaporeans blogging pointhack and redemption strategies.
Though do note that their reviews are not limited to business-class (unlike AUSBT); so may not be what you are looking for. But good to read if you are looking for good bargains re point redemption while you are living in Singapore!!



illumination

Cathay Pacific - Asia Miles

Member since 05 Jun 2017

Total posts 3

1) Does anyone have any experience transferring an Amex from one jurisdiction to another? Are there any advantages to doing so? Wouldn't I give up any initial MR bonus that I would otherwise get by opening a new Amex card in Singapore?

I've looked into it, mainly just because I saw the option online and was curious how it worked, and what happens is that your card isn't really 'transferred', as such: more so that your Australian credit history and your existing customer profile are taken into account when assessing your new application - so rather than applying cold as a brand new customer with zero credit history in the new country (which makes things tricky), the fact that you've been a cardholder for X years, have a good repayment history and don't have any red flags on your Australian credit report could help your chances of approval overseas. Your Australian card isn't automatically closed when you open a new one overseas, so you can choose to close it or keep it open (or for a credit card, perhaps move it to a no-annual-fee card to keep your Australian credit limit alive if you plan on returning). Not financial advice, of course, but just what seemed to be the case!

I've recently moved to Singapore from Australia and also looked into it and was told slightly different information.

In the interest of full transparency, I'm going to share my thoughts/experience and at the bottom of this comment, I've got a link to my blog where I posted about the differences between the Australian and Singaporean Credit Card market (from a generic point of view).

The part about having your "Australian" side taken into account was similar (and quite logical - a good thing too, as a customer). However, I was told that if you try to use the AMEX Migration program, you must choose an Australian AMEX to cancel.

It sounded like the rationale behind the program was for you to be able to not only have your credit and repayment history in Australia considered, but also a "service" for you in that you probably wouldn't need an Australian credit card that may have annual fees while you're living overseas, so this is a way for you to cancel your Australian card and retain your rewards points.

This would be relevant if you have Membership Rewards Points that you wanted to keep and you did not wish to keep paying the annual fee on an AMEX Platinum Edge/Explorer/Platinum Charge.

For me, I wanted to keep my Australian cards and was told I had to pick one to effectively replace by doing this.

With all that being said, I discovered the only advantage then was having your previous credit history/repayments and membership history factored in. I've now applied for a standalone AMEX here and my "member since" reads "18". I also am under the impression that by participating in the migration program, you aren't considered a new applicant for "new applicant" bonuses here.

Best card purely considering earn rate? A recently announced (but not public information available) card called the Bank of China Elite World Mastercard. First year annual fee waiver, 2KF/$ locally, 5KF/$ overseas (there are conversion fees of 2.5% or 2.8%) until end of the year. Earn rate drops to 1.5KF/$ locally and 3KF/$ overseas afterwards, which is still higher than pretty much all cards in the market (bar credit cards with $4k annual fees and $500k income requirements), not factoring in category specific bonuses etc.

With the cards mentioned above (e.g. DBS Altitude, Citibank Premiermiles) - these are definitely popular and not bad. Their earn rates are considered "solid" and the flexibility in being able to transfer to Asia Miles and KrisFlyer is very much valued. However, the large majority of cards have transfer fees (which we don't have in Australia) so that's something to keep in mind.

phileas.fogg

United Airlines - Mileage Plus

Member since 11 Feb 2018

Total posts 6

Summary of options (some already mentioned) for FF programs:
SQ - via amex Platinum Card Shortcut
UA - status match (can be done from QF/VA)
VA - still get priority and lounge benefits with SQ

I'm also considering starting to put my Star Alliance points to Asiana with the two-year earn period and 500k miles for lifetime gold (vs United 1m).

I should mention that I'm already Gold on United, and was 1K the previous four years. My plan is to stick with United and go back up to 1K, in order to take advantage of the GPUs on their trans-Pacific flights to San Francisco. (Family is in the US). But I will probably mostly fly on Singapore within the region and back to Australia.

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