Priority Banking Comparison: HSBC Premier vs Citigold

Alevin Chan
Last updated Sep 19, 2022

HSBC Premier has a slightly lower barrier to entry, but Citigold has a richer selection of privileges. Which of these priority banking programmes should you choose?

HSBC Premier and Citigold are priority banking programmes catered to wealthy individuals seeking to grow and manage their wealth and assets. 

At heart, both of these platforms are quite similar, but there are some slight differences that may make one more attractive over the other. 

How does HSBC Premier compare against Citigold? Let’s find out. 

SingSaver Exclusive Offer:

Receive S$150 Cash when you apply for a Citi Plus account through Singsaver, deposit S$15K within 2 months from the month of account opening, and maintain the funds for 4 months after funding in. Fulfilment will be done within 3 months from the end of the fund maintenance period. Valid till 31 October 2022. T&Cs apply.

At-a-glance: HSBC Premier vs Citigold

HSBC PremierCitigold
Signing up:
– Deposit fresh funds of at least S$200,000 – Deposit monthly salary of at least S$15,000 per month- Take an HSBC Singapore property loan of at least S$800,000
Signing up: 
– Deposit fresh funds of at least S$250,000
Wealth management tools and services:
– All-in-one wealth tracking via Wealth Dashboard- Preferential rates for savings, loans and mortgages- Online unit trust and securities investment- Construct your own investment portfolio- Latest research and wealth advisory from HSBC’s research team 
Wealth management tools and services: – Personalised wealth management via Total Wealth Advisor – Preferential mortgage interest rates and instalment offsets- Full suite of wealth solutions, ranging from forex to unit trusts and insurance solutions- Bonus interest with Citi Wealth First Account
Membership privileges:
– Global banking privileges, including fee-free ATM cash withdrawals – Overseas education support for children- Relationship Manager assigned to you
Membership privileges:
– Access Citigold centres and free emergency cash withdrawals worldwide- Dining, travel, hotel, spa, health and other lifestyle privileges- Relationship Manager assigned to you
Sign-up reward:
– Get up to S$13,501 welcome gift- Bonuses for incremental deposits, investments and referrals
Sign-up rewards:
– Get up to S$6,976 welcome gift for minimum S$250,000 deposit- Bonuses for incremental deposits, investments and referrals 

How these two products are the same

Both HSBC Premier and Citigold are premium banking programmes from HSBC and Citi respectively. They are targeted at affluent individuals who earn a high annual income (at least S$180,000) or have otherwise a substantial amount of wealth investments and assets.

Signing up for HSBC Premier or Citigold is largely similar – you’ll need to make deposits into your account equal to or exceeding the minimum qualifying sum, while making investments and/or buying insurance plans to access bonus cash rewards. 

The overarching goal of both HSBC Premier and Citigold is to help their members grow their wealth further. To that end, both programmes offer personalised wealth planning and advisory services through a variety of tools and services. 

These include digital dashboards and online wealth platforms that you can use to oversee your financial portfolio, as well as research insights and market reports. Another feature that may be useful is global banking facilities, such as free worldwide funds transfers, ATM withdrawals, and preferential forex rates. 

Another commonality between the two is the inclusion of privileges and rewards, mostly revolving around lifestyle, partnerships and services. And also, you won’t be going at it alone (although you can, if you choose to) – you’ll be assigned the services of a Relationship Manager, who will assist you in growing your wealth by curating opportunities, promotions and offers. 

Lastly, both programmes offer deposit insurance of up to S$75,000 in Singapore Dollar deposits through the Singapore Deposit Insurance Corporation. 

SingSaver Exclusive Offer: Snag an OTO Vanda VN-01 Massage Chair (worth S$1,880) or an iPhone 13 Pro Max 128 GB (worth S$1,799) when you open an HSBC Premier Everyday Global Account (EGA) with a min. deposit of S$200,000 and an HSBC investment account via the HSBC Singapore app or HSBC Online Banking. You’ll also enjoy access to a Family Relationship Manager for holistic advice and recommendations, with preferential rates on deposits, savings, and wealth products. Valid till 30 September 2022. T&Cs apply.

This is applicable to all new-to-bank HSBC Premier clients. Customers should still be an eligible Premier customer at the time of reward fulfilment. Promotion is valid till 30 September 2022. T&Cs apply.

How they are different

Sign-up criteria 

To sign up for Citigold, you’ll need to make a deposit of fresh funds totalling S$250,000. While not explicitly stated, there may be other ways through which you can also qualify for membership. Check directly with Citi if you’d like to explore other ways to qualify. 

For HSBC Premier, there are three options for you to qualify. One is by making a fresh funds deposit of at least S$200,000, another is by crediting your salary of at least $15,000 per month, and thirdly by taking up a Singapore property mortgage worth at least S$800,000.

Sign-up rewards

At the time of writing, both Citigold and HSBC Premier are offering sign-up rewards worth several thousands of dollars. 

Citigold promises almost S$7,000 in cash bonuses. But hold on to your horses, as HSBC Premier is dangling nearly double that figure – over S$13,000.

While such sums certainly make for attention-grabbing marketing campaigns, the devil, as they say, are in the details. 

In order to collect the full bonus reward, you’ll need to complete a whole list of tasks, such as making investments, buying insurance plans, maintaining your account for a minimum period, and such. 

Also, part of the cash rewards come from referral bonuses, which you only receive if you manage to persuade your friends, acquaintances or family members to sign up. 

It might be prudent to ignore the big flashy numbers, as realistically speaking, you’ll likely only receive part of the cash bonuses if you only want to sign up for basic services.

SingSaver Exclusive Offer: Grab an Apple iPad Air 5th Gen (worth S$879) or a Sony HT-G700 Soundbar (worth S$899) or S$800 Cash when you make a min. deposit of S$250,000 within 3 months of account opening. Valid till 2 October 2022. T&Cs apply.

This is applicable for all new to bank customers who do not have an existing Citigold or Citibank current/savings account. If you own a Citibank credit card or personal loan, you will still be eligible. T&Cs apply.

You’ll also enjoy exclusive privileges, from personalised wealth advisories to a dedicated Relationship Manager – all to close the gap to your financial milestones. 

Additionally, get up to S$6,976 cash when you make a min. deposit of S$250,000 in Assets Under Management within 3 months of account opening. T&Cs apply.

Membership privileges

One of the membership privileges that HSBC Premier offers is overseas education support for your children. 

This perk helps to smoothen the transition for your children studying in another country through the provision of HSBC banking and payment facilities. As you’d imagine, this is really only useful if you have children and are planning to send them for overseas study. 

In contrast, Citigold seems to offer a more general suite of membership privileges anchored by lifestyle, dining, travel and spa offers. Of course, it is likely that HSBC also has some of these, but details aren’t readily available, so you’ll have to ask them directly. 

Conclusion: HSBC Premier or Citigold – Which one is right for you?

HSBC Premier has a slightly lower entry point – S$200,000 versus Citigold’s S$250,000 – and also offers more ways to qualify. 

However, what’s more important is whether these programmes serve your long-term financial goals, which pretty much boils down to whether you can find investment products and opportunities that suit your needs and preferences. 

The membership perks and privileges are secondary considerations that are good to have, and certainly should not form the basis of your decision. 

But also, there’s no need to choose only one of these (or indeed, any other) priority banking programmes. If you have the funds, go ahead and sign up for both the programmes to see which one suits you best. You can always make adjustments as you go along. 

But just to cover all your bases, make sure to check for early closure penalties, fixed-deposit rules and the like in case you do decide to make an early exit.

Read these next:
A Full Guide To Priority Banking In Singapore
Premium Credit Cards: Which Gives High Income Earners The Best Value?
5 Best Wealth Management Services In Singapore
Best Premium Credit Cards In Singapore
The Four Most Exclusive Credit Cards in Singapore

By Alevin Chan
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.

Alevin Chan September 19, 2022 96413