Earn cashback, miles and rebates with an all-in-one credit card that can also double up as your EZ-Link/public transport card on trains and buses.
<UPDATE> Commuters can now tap any MasterCard/Visa credit card to pay for public transport under LTA’s SimplyGo scheme. No need to carry or even top up your EZ link card anymore! Even better, if the Visa or Mastercard credit card is stored on your smartphone, you can even leave the credit card at home.
To do this, simply:
2. Upon approaching a gantry, enable face ID/ verification and hold your phone near the gantry and voila!
3. <OPTIONAL> Download SimplyGo mobile app to track public transport expenses. If not, your card issuer should also issue you a mobile phone notification about the expense.
This also means you now have a brand new way to earn air miles/cashback on public transport. Check out this article on the best cards to use to earn miles on bus and MRT rides.
Is your wallet bursting with too many cards? You might want to consider an all-in-one credit card that also doubles up as an EZ-Link card. What that means is that you can earn cash back and rebates with every tap on public trains or buses.
Besides freeing up precious wallet space, these EZ-link credit cards also come with an automatic top-up option when your EZ-Link balance is low, which is again charged to the credit card.
Since 2018, EZ-Link cards can also be used at hawker stalls accepting NETS FlashPay transactions. Yep, your EZ-Link enabled credit card can now double up as your transport and lunch card! Here are four credit cards you can use as your EZ-Link card.
Best Credit Cards for EZ-Link Transactions
|Credit Card||Cashback/Rewards for EZ-Link Transactions||
|Standard Chartered Unlimited Cashback Credit Card||
|Citi SMRT Card||
|DBS Live Fresh Card||
|POSB Everyday Card||
At the top of this list is the Standard Chartered Unlimited Cashback Credit Card, among the newest cash rebate card to hit Singapore. It comes with the EZ-Reload by Card service, which automatically tops up your card when the balance runs low.
The default auto top-up amount is set at S$50.25, with S$0.25 being the convenience fee charged by EZ-Link. You can change the auto top-up amount any time, but Standard Chartered cannot waive the convenience fee. To avoid this pesky fee, reduce the number of top-ups you make.
On the bright side, your EZ-Reload top-ups are counted as retail spend. This means you earn 1.5% cash back every time you top up your EZ-Link card.
Get This Card If You…
Want an uncomplicated cashback card. The Unlimited Cashback Credit Card is one of the easiest-to-use cash rebate cards in Singapore. Earn 1.5% on all local retail spend, and 3% cash back on all foreign currency spend until June 2019.
What sets this cash back card apart is that there’s no minimum spend required and there are no limits to the total rebate amount. Perfect for those who don’t want separate rebate cards for certain types of spend.
Want to earn easy rebates from EZ-Reload. Other EZ-link credit cards may provide rebates for EZ-Reload top-ups (see below) but they come with conditions like minimum spend or maximum rebate amounts. With the Unlimited Cashback Credit Card, earning the 1.5% rebate is as simple as letting the EZ-Reload function do its thing.
The Citi SMRT Card is the only credit card in Singapore that partners with one of Singapore’s major transport companies. Simply activate the card at TransitLink office to use it as your EZ-Link card.
At 2% rebate for any EZ-Reload transactions over S$30, you’ll save quite a bit after a year. The rebates are rewarded in SMRT$, which can be redeemed for vouchers or free rides. 1 SMRT$ is equal to S$1 worth of vouchers, which means that you can earn S$40 worth of SMRT vouchers with the SMRT$48 you accumulate in a year (SMRT vouchers come in denominations of 10).
But the 2% rebate comes with strings attached: you need to spend a minimum of S$300 per month, failing which you only qualify for a 0.3% rebate. You can also only earn up to 600 SMRT$ in a year.
Each EZ-Reload transaction must also be over S$30; anything below earns 1% SMRT$. Fortunately, the default EZ-Reload amount is set at S$30, which can be changed at any time.
The great thing about this card is there are no convenience fees for EZ-Reload top-ups, usually charged at S$0.25 per transaction. And if you can meet the minimum spend, you save quite a bit on your train rides when redeemed for vouchers.
Get This Card If You…
Want to earn rebates and free train rides with your rebates. In addition to the 2% rebate from EZ-Reload transactions, you can also earn up to 5% rebate at groceries, 5% rebate on coffee and fast food, and 1% rebate on recurring bills.
Want extra household savings or Grab discounts. You also save more on groceries, shopping or Grab rides if you apply for the Citi SMRT Card through SingSaver! All approved applicants will receive $200 vouchers or codes of your choice: NTUC FairPrice, Takashimaya or Grab.
The DBS Live Fresh Card comes auto-enrolled to EZ-Reload, making it the most convenient EZ-Link credit card of the lot.
No need to queue at a TransitLink office, you’ll receive a text with an activation code 10 days upon approval of the DBS Live Fresh Card.
The default EZ-Reload amount is set at S$40. You can change this any time, but it will take up to four weeks to reflect the new amount. Convenience fees for DBS Live Fresh EZ-Reload function are also waived.
This card also gives you 5% cashback on all online transactions and Visa payWave spends (including Apple Pay, Samsung Pay and Google Pay). Earn up to $60 cash back with this card: $20 on online transactions, $20 on payWave spends and $20 on all other spends, with a minimum spend of $600 per month.
Get This Card If You…
Have a DBS savings account. On top of using this credit card as an EZ-Link card, you can also link your DBS savings account and use it as your ATM card.
Also love online shopping. Cardmembers get 5% cash back when you shop online or use mobile payments (Apple Pay, Android Pay, Samsung Pay).
The POSB Everyday Card only offers 0.3% rebate for EZ-Reload transactions – which is to say, not much. But it’s better than nothing at all.
Activating the EZ-Link function on the POSB Everyday Card is also convenient: you will receive an activation code within 10 days of applying for the card which you can then use at a ticketing machine.
Note that the default EZ-Reload amount is set at S$50, and the $0.25 convenience fees are also waived.
Get This Card If You…
Want to save on food delivery. With up to 20% savings on online food delivery, enjoy more of your favourite meals for less.
Are looking for an easy everyday cashback card. With cashback at Sheng Siong, Watson’s, StarHub and utility bills, this handy card helps you cut costs on daily spend.
Did you know…
Anyone with an EZ-Link credit card can sign up for the EZ-link app, an app designed to help you maximise your EZ-link card. Through the app, you can join partner reward programmes with NTUC plus!, and even telcos like Circles.Life to make the most out of your daily commute. That means that your daily travels can qualify you for grocery or even data perks, all without any additional effort! Who says public transport can’t be fun?
Read these next:
5 Things to Know When Graduating From Debit to Credit Cards
Which Online Grocery in Singapore Delivers the Biggest Savings?
Cashback or Rewards Credit Cards: Which is Better?
6 Credit Cards That Give Free Access To Airport Lounges
Amex, Mastercard or Visa: Which is Better for Travel?
By Alevin Chan
A Certified 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 optimize happiness and enjoyment in his life.