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4 Types Of Credit Cards With Lifetime Annual Fee Waivers

SingSaver team

SingSaver team

Last updated 16 November, 2023

Imagine never having to call to waive your credit card annual fee... ever. That’s the dream, isn’t it? Here are four ways to enjoy no annual fees for life.

Most credit cards in Singapore come with no annual fee for only the first year or two of usage. After all, the providers want to make it easy and appealing for you to switch to their credit cards. 

But once that ‘free trial’ ends, you might get charged with a hefty annual fee (typically S$180 + GST). Once you recover from the shock of seeing that S$192.60 line item on your credit card bill, you can usually call in and ask the credit card company to waive it. However, there is a chance your request will get denied.

If you can’t get your annual fee waived, then you can simply cancel your credit card to avoid paying the fee. But that leaves you short of your favourite credit card, and you’ll probably need to update your billing arrangements. 

In short, credit card annual fees can be waived, but the process can be quite bothersome. If you really don’t enjoy all this administrative hassle, opt for these four types of credit cards that let you enjoy no annual fee.

Table of contents


#1: Best credit cards with no annual fees

Jump to:

#1: CIMB credit cards

CIMB Visa Signature
CIMB World Mastercard
CIMB Visa Infinite

CIMBVisaSignatureCard

CIMB-WORLD-MASTERCARD_2019-LR-1024x674

CIMB-VISA-INFINITE_2019-LR-1024x674

Malaysian bank CIMB’s credit cards don’t get a lot of hype. But we like that CIMB charges no annual fees, ever, on all of its credit cards. All three CIMB credit cards that you can compare here are free for life, no strings attached. 

Depending on your lifestyle and spending habits, the right CIMB credit card will go a long way in helping you stretch your money. Just so you know, all three CIMB credit cards have minimum spend requirements in place.

💡 Pro-tip: If you need help hitting your CIMB credit card's minimum spend, consider applying for a supplementary card or two for your spouse and/or family members to use too! Whatever expenditure is incurred on the supplementary card directly contributes towards your main card's (as primary cardholder) monthly minimum spend.

See also: Which Supplementary Cards Offer The Best Benefits?

CIMB_CC_BLOGARTICLE 800x250

SingSaver Exclusive Offer: Receive S$280 cash via PayNow upon activating your CIMB credit card and spending min. $988 for 60-day periods following card approval. Valid until 30 April 2024. T&Cs apply.


#2: HSBC Revolution Credit Card

HSBC-revolution

Another great credit card option that doesn't bear annual fees is the ever-popular HSBC Revolution Card.

This powerhouse card is the miles card that every miles-chaser needs to have in their wallet. Or even if you're just beginning your miles journey, the HSBC Revolution is an excellent entry-level card to get your miles game started.

It offers up to 4 miles per S$1 spend on online and mobile contactless spend on travel, shopping, groceries, and dining. This 4 miles rate is capped at S$1,000 spend per month, subsequently, it reverts to the base 0.4 miles rate. Earning miles is no longer a stressful endeavour.

⭐ Read our full HSBC Revolution Card review here.

HSBC_CC_18 MAR_BLOGARTICLE_800x250 (2)

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

Receive a Dyson Supersonic™ hair dryer (worth S$699) or an ErgoTune Joobie (worth S$599) or an Apple iPad 9th 10.2" WiFi 64GB (worth S$508.30) or S$350 eCapitaVoucher or S$150 cash via PayNow 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.


#3: Standard Chartered Smart Credit Card

SCB_SMART_CARD-w1920

If none of the CIMB credit cards appeals to you, perhaps the Standard Chartered Smart Credit Card might? You can also consider getting a debit card. Most (but not all!) debit cards in Singapore also have no annual fees for life.

⭐ Read our full SCB Smart Credit Card review here.

SingSaver's Exclusive Offer: Enjoy the following rewards when you sign up for a Standard Chartered Smart Card. Eligible for new Standard Chartered cardholders only.

Receive an Apple iPad 9th Gen 10.2 Wifi 64GB (worth S$508.30) or Apple AirPods Pro 2nd Generation (worth $365.70) or Nintendo Switch Gen 2 (worth S$399) or up to S$300 cash upon activating and spending min. S$250 spend within 30 days of card approval. Also, get an additional S$20 e-Capitaland voucher when you make a min. spending of S$1,000 in your 2nd month. Valid till 1 May 2024.  T&Cs apply.

Plus, get an additional S$20 e-Capitaland Voucher when you split the payment for your purchases with SCB Easy Pay, pay your bills with SCB Easybill or put any of your purchases on instalment in SCB Savings Account or Current Account within 60 days of approval. Valid till 1 May 2024. T&C applies.


#4: UOB EVOL Credit Card

uob-evol-1024x644

Lastly, for those with a lower monthly budget or spend, perhaps a credit card like the UOB EVOL Card will do you good? Not only does it fall in the lower range of S$600 minimum monthly spend as far as credit cards go, but it doesn't have any annual fees either – as long as you spend three qualifying transactions per month, but that's not difficult at all.

⭐ Read our full UOB EVOL Card review here.

UOB EVOL Card Welcome Offer: Get S$350 Cash Credit as one of the first 200 new-to-UOB credit cardmembers with a minimum spend of S$1,000 per month for 2 consecutive months from card approval date. Valid till 30 April 2024. T&Cs apply.


#2: Best credit cards with automatic fee waivers

Another way to get a near-perpetual annual fee waiver on your credit card is to pick one with an automatic fee waiver function. 

DBS/POSB, OCBC, UOB and Maybank all offer automatic fee waivers once you hit their stipulated minimum annual spend. So as long as you spend this amount every year, you’ll never have to call and ask for a fee waiver. 

The minimum spend varies from card to card, and not all credit cards are eligible. Below, we’ve compiled the credit cards with the lowest thresholds for automatic annual fee waivers.

Credit card Annual fee Minimum spend for auto fee waiver
Maybank Platinum Visa Card S$20 per quarter N/A, just spend every 3 months
Singtel-UOB Card S$194.40 N/A, just charge your Singtel bill
Maybank Manchester United Visa Platinum Card S$80 Waived for first 2 years, subsequently S$3,600 annually required
OCBC Great Eastern Cashflo Credit Card S$162 Waived for first 2 years, subsequently S$5,000 annually
Other OCBC credit cards Varies S$10,000 (for select OCBC cards)
Maybank FC Barcelona Credit Card S$120 S$10,000 annually

DBS Woman’s Credit Card
DBS_WOMANS

S$162 Waived for first year, subsequently S$15,000 annually
DBS Woman's World Credit Card
DBSWomansWorldMasterCard
S$194.40 Waived for first year, subsequently S$25,000 annually

For low-spenders, we would recommend either the Maybank Platinum Visa Card or the OCBC Plus! Visa Credit Card. 

The Maybank Platinum Visa Card charges a quarterly fee instead of an annual one. But to get it waived, you just need to charge something to the card every quarter. That’s it. There’s no minimum amount.

DBS/POSB Credit Card Welcome Gift: Receive up to S$388 cashback or 85,000 miles when you apply for select DBS credit cards and fulfil the relevant promotion criteria. T&Cs apply.


#3: Best free credit cards based on memberships

If you happen to be a member of NTUC or SAFRA, you’re already eligible for a no-annual-fee credit card. These organisations have co-branded credit cards with perpetual annual fee waivers as long as the cardholder remains a paying member.

The SAFRA DBS Credit Card is a relatively fuss-free credit card. Just spend at least S$500 a month to get 3% cash rebates on your online spending and contactless payments. SAFRA membership is open to NSFs/NSmen, and fees range from S$43.20 (3 years) to S$437.40 (10 years).

dbs-safra-cardface-2

DBS/POSB Credit Card Welcome Gift: Receive up to S$388 cashback or 85,000 miles when you apply for select DBS credit cards and fulfil the relevant promotion criteria. T&Cs apply.


#4: Best free credit cards for priority banking customers

Finally, you can get a perpetual annual fee waiver if you are a priority banking customer with Maybank or DBS. The corresponding credit card’s annual fee will be waived perpetually, as long as you remain a member of the programme.

Credit card
Priority banking programme
How to qualify
Maybank Privilege Horizon Visa Signature Card
Maybank Privilege Horizon Visa Signature Card
Deposit or invest at least S$50,000
DBS Treasures Black Elite Card
Cards | DBS Treasures
Deposit or invest at least S$350,000
 

Find the right no-annual-fee credit card for you

Turns out there is a whole variety of credit card options out there for those who dread performing the yearly fee waiver ritual. We’ve hand-picked some of the very best ones above.

That said, if you've already used your card's complimentary fee waiver and want to learn how to continue waiving the fee, there is a way. 😏 Check out our full Annual Fee Waiver Guide (By Banks) to learn how.

Want to see what other credit cards you might be missing out on? Go ahead and peruse the best credit cards in Singapore on SingSaver. Make sure you use the Annual Fee Waiver toggle to filter only the free ones!

 

At SingSaver, we make personal finance accessible with easy to understand personal finance reads, tools and money hacks that simplify all of life’s financial decisions for you.

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Use a personal loan to consolidate your outstanding debt at a lower interest rate!

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