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I’m not planning to buy a car, get married or travel the world in the near future, but even if I was, I wouldn’t be able to afford it. In this day and age, you need about $15,000 in your bank account before you can even afford to do even one of those things, and I’m too busy spending on comics and video games.
But if you are planning to spend a significant amount of money, here’s how you can save money at the same time. Charge it to a cashback credit card! You could earn hundreds of dollars in cash rebates. Don’t believe us? Here’s how much the top cashback cards can earn you on your big-ticket item.
No matter how much you’re spending, the American Express True Cashback Card clearly comes up top for two main reasons.
1. There are no restrictions on earning your cashback
While other credit cards do give you higher cash rebate rates compared to the American Express True Cashback Card, but there are always terms and conditions to look out for. The UOB One Card and the Maybank Platinum Visa Card both require you to reach a minimum spend for three consecutive months before you can earn your rebates. Should you not meet the minimum spend, you risk earning a smaller cashback rebate or no rebates at all!
And while the ANZ Optimum Card does have no cap on the total amount of cashback rebates you can earn, there is a cap per transaction of $30. So while the ANZ Optimum Card can claim to give you up to 5% cashback, when it comes to big ticket items, it’s not very generous. In fact, the terms and conditions for the ANZ Optimum Card also clearly state that no cashback will be given for wedding banquets.
The American Express True Cashback Card has no restrictions on how your cashback is earned. It doesn’t matter how little you spend or how much cashback you earn. In fact, it doesn’t care what you spend it on either, which brings me to my next point.
2. It has the best cashback rate for general purchases
Other cashback credit cards in the market can offer you up to 8 per cent cashback, but those are only for specific spending categories like dining or groceries. When it comes to general spending, though, those same cards offer you as little as 0.25 per cent cashback, or 0.3 per cent if they’re feeling generous.
At 1.5% cashback, the American Express True Cashback Card is the best in the market right now for general purchases. Not surprisingly, most big-ticket items don’t fall into any of the usual spending categories. If you wanted to earn the most cashback rebates from buying an engagement ring, for example, the American Express True Cashback Card would be the obvious choice.
What’s more, the American Express True Cashback Card also gives you 3 per cent cashback on the first $5,000 spent in the first 6 months. That’s $150 in cashback rebates, right there.
On top of that, they are currently offering a $40 Starbucks card as a sign up offer if you apply before 30 Sept 2016, so if you need some fuel for your shopping spree, you’ve got it right there for free.
But wait… how am I supposed to charge more than $15,000 to my credit card?
Most of our credit card credit limits are set at two times our monthly salary. This means that even if you’re earning the median wage in Singapore – almost $4,000 – your credit limit will be no more than $8,000. Here are three ways to increase your credit limit.
1. Request for a permanent increase in credit limit
This only works if you applied for your credit card several years ago, and your salary has increased since then. Providing the credit card provider with your new income documents will allow them to increase your credit card’s credit limit.
2. Request for a temporary increase in credit limit
For certain types of transactions, you can actually ask the credit card provider for a temporary credit limit increase. There are limitations to this, of course. You can request for a credit limit increase for travel purposes, for example, but only for the duration of your trip. You can’t get a credit limit increase to buy your travel tickets. In the same way, you can ask for a credit limit increase only for wedding banquets, not for wedding photography packages.
3. Artificially inflate your credit limit by making early payment
In case it needs to be said, you should only be making these purchases when you actually have the cash on hand, and then using your credit card to reap the benefits. You should definitely not want to go into debt as a result of these big-ticket items.
So, since you have the money on hand, making an early payment to your credit card account will cause your credit limit to increase. So if you have an available credit limit of $8,000 for example, and you pay $12,000 to your credit card account, you will then have a credit limit of $20,000. Just enough to buy that Smart TV using your American Express True Cashback Card.
This article was brought to you in collaboration with American Express.
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