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6 Ways To Maximise Your Credit Card Perks and Travel in Style

Alevin Chan

Alevin Chan

Last updated 20 February, 2023

Credit cards offer perks and privileges that help holidaymakers travel in style. Here are six ways you can make use of them to elevate your next overseas trip.

What’s better than going on a trip? Tripping in style. No, we don’t mean dressing up only to be crammed into your budget airline seat for the next seven hours.

We’re talking about making use of travel perks and privileges provided by your bank – and there are many – to enhance your holiday, giving you an elevated experience from doorstep to plane, and throughout your overseas trip (thank you credit cards).

Here are six tips to help you travel the world in style.

1. Get free flights and seat upgrades with air miles

Ask any avid traveller and they’ll tell you: redeeming plane tickets with air miles never gets old. When your free plane seat is waiting, you can’t help sauntering up the airbridge.

But air miles aren’t just good for paying for your flight. In fact, some might argue that air miles are better spent on seat upgrades for a thoroughly enjoyable flight experience. 

Consider this: Upgrading from Economy Flexi to Premium Economy costs just 30,000 air miles for a round-trip to Japan on Singapore Airlines.

And if you happen to have some leftover KrisFlyer miles that are expiring soon, you can spend them at to get, say, this scented candle travel set to use in your hotel room for added atmosphere.

Amex Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Credit Card Welcome Gift: Receive up to 17,000 KrisFlyer Miles when you make a min. spend of S$500 within the first month of card approval. For new-to-American-Express Card Members only. Valid till 30 April 2024. T&Cs apply.

Related to this topic: 6 Best Ways To Redeem Your Miles Without Travelling

2. Earn more air miles with premium credit cards

Now that we’ve whetted your appetite for air miles, let’s talk about how you can get your hands on some in a hurry.

The best way to do so is simply to sign up for a travel credit card (and fulfil the spending criteria) to receive a stack of welcome air miles.

From then on, you’ll earn air miles automatically on eligible transactions charged to your shiny new credit card.

Some cards also reward you with bonus miles for paying your annual fee, or when spending at partner merchants. You will also enjoy a higher air miles earn rate when spending overseas or on transactions in foreign currencies.

By far, you’ll get the best welcome miles package and earn rate with premium credit cards, such as those carrying the Visa Infinite moniker.

This class of cards have a high minimum annual salary requirement of around S$120,000, which means they are only accessible by the wealthy.

That level of income also means you’ll likely qualify for Priority Banking. Indeed, premium credit cards are often offered to Priority Banking customers as part of their perks.

Related to this topic: Best Ways to Grow Your Wealth Through Priority Banking

3. Relax in the airport lounge before boarding

Instead of jostling with the masses as you wait for your boarding gate to open, a better alternative would be to relax with some refreshments in an exclusive lounge with controlled access.

Not only will you have a more pleasant wait, you can also grab a bite or drink, browse the web, catch up on Netflix, even have a nap or take a shower.

Everyone is welcome to visit an airport lounge, as long as they pay the entry fee. But if you have a travel credit card, you can enjoy complimentary airport lounge access, making your trip that much more enjoyable.

You’ll get up to two complimentary lounge visits per year with most travel credit cards. Premium credit cards offer more lounge visits, and generally provide admission to a greater number of airport lounges around the world.


⚡Flash Deal⚡: Be one of the first 500 applicants to get a PlayStation 5 Disc Version (worth S$799) or Dyson Airwrap (worth S$859) or S$500 ecapitaVoucher when you apply for a Citi Card and spend a minimum of S$500 within 30 days of card approval. Remaining applicants will enjoy existing rewards. Applicable to new-to-Citibank cardmembers only. Promo runs from 9 April, 9AM SGT - 2 May 2024. T&Cs apply.


SingSaver's Exclusive Offer: Enjoy the following rewards when you sign up for a Citi PremierMiles Card:

Receive an Apple iPad 10th Gen Wifi 64GB (worth S$691.60) or Dyson Supersonic (worth S$699) or S$400 eCapitaVoucher or S$300 cash via PayNow upon activating and spending a minimum of S$500 within 30 days of card approval. Valid until 30 April 2024. T&Cs apply.

4. Arrive like a celebrity with complimentary airport transfer

Getting to the airport is the first step in any holiday, and you know what they say about getting off to a good start.

Certain travel credit cards provide complimentary airport transfers that chauffeur you from your home to the airport. These are dedicated professional services that are a step up from your JustGrab or Gojek ride (not that there’s anything wrong with those!).

And if you’re holding a premium credit card, expect to be chauffeured to your flight in luxury cars or limousines – just like a rockstar. All that’s missing is the paparazzi.

5. Feel like royalty with express immigration clearance

What’s the most tedious part about travelling to another country? That’s right, clearing customs and immigration.

While you can’t skip customs, you totally can speed through the process without standing and waiting in the queue with the rest of the peasants.

It’s called expedited immigration clearance, and is one of the most desirable travel perks that will truly let you travel in style. Upon landing, you’ll be ushered through the airport to specially reserved counters, and be out the other side and into your waiting limo before anyone else.

SingSaver's Exclusive Offer: Enjoy the following rewards when you sign up for an HSBC Revolution Card:

Receive a Dyson AM07 (worth S$459) or Apple Airpods (3rd Gen) With Magsafe Charging Case (worth S$274) or S$250 eCapitaVoucher or 15K Heymax Miles (worth a free flight to Tokyo, Japan) upon activating and spending min. S$500 by the end of the following calendar month from the card account opening date. Valid till 14 May 2024. T&Cs apply.

6. Use the personalised concierge service

One more tip to help you travel in style is to make generous use of your credit card’s concierge service.

If you’re holding an eligible credit card, you will be entitled to a concierge service that can help take care of things for you in the background, leaving you to enjoy your holiday to the fullest.

Besides tasks like making restaurant reservations, setting up meetings and booking concert tickets, your concierge can also render more personalised services such as making travel arrangements and even doing some personal shopping for you.

Also, if you encounter a mishap and need some help, your concierge will also render assistance, fulfilling important tasks such as securing alternative accommodations or arranging for an urgent flight out of the country.

It is all very fancy, which is why such high-level concierge services are only offered along with the most premium of credit cards.

Ordinary credit card holders may also be able to access a concierge service, but the range of services available will be much narrower, and mostly geared towards emergency situations.


Read these next:

Travel Insurance Guide: Five Things All Travellers Must Know

Travel Insurance Add-ons: Which Ones are Worth Your Money?

Best Air Miles Credit Cards In Singapore (2023)

7 Credit Cards Which Give Free Access to Airport Lounges

Best Travel Insurance Plans for Adventure Seekers

An ex-Financial Planner with a curiosity about what makes people tick, Alevin’s mission is to help readers understand the psychology of money. He’s also on an ongoing quest to optimise happiness and enjoyment in his life.


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