The Bonus$aver account offered by Standard Chartered Bank offers an attractive interest rate of up to 3% p.a. Read on to find out how easy (or difficult) it is to earn this interest rate.
Bonus$aver offers a maximum total interest of up to 2.6% p.a. for your first $80,000 — a relatively high interest rate with the current economic environment. However, getting this 2.6% p.a. will require effort on your part.
How the Bonus$aver account works
The Bonus$aver account has five main pillars. Meeting the requirements under each pillar will earn you bonus interest on the first $80,000 of your account balance:
- Spend: Spend a minimum of $500 on your card to earn additional 0.25% p.a. bonus interest, or more than $2,000 to earn an additional 0.75% p.a.
- Salary credit: Credit a minimum salary of $3,000 per month through GIRO to earn additional 0.20% p.a. bonus interest
- Invest: Invest in an eligible unit trust with a minimum subscription sum of $30,000 to earn additional 0.90% p.a. bonus interest
- Insure: Purchase an eligible insurance policy with a minimal annual premium of $12,000 to earn additional 0.90% p.a. bonus interest
- Bill payment: Make three eligible bill payments of at least $50 each (in a calendar month) from your Bonus$aver account via GIRO or online banking to earn additional 0.10% p.a. bonus interest
Here’s what this might look like if you spend more than $2,000 on your card and meet all of the category requirements, earning you an estimated annual interest of 2.6% p.a.:
Pros and cons of the Bonus$aver account
Bonus$aver account product summary:
- Base interest rate: 0.03% p.a.
- Maximum interest rate: 2.60% p.a.
- Minimum average daily balance for auto-waiver of monthly fall-below fee: $3,000
- Minimum initial deposit: NIL
|No minimum initial deposit||Requires you to jump through multiple hoops to earn bonus interest|
|Interest rate of up to 2.6% p.a.||Minimum monthly salary crediting of $3,000|
|Multi-currency feature allows you to access 14 different currencies with no overseas transaction fees||Invest category requires a minimum investment amount of $30,000 in an eligible unit trust to earn bonus interest|
|Waived credit card annual fee for the first two years||Insure category requires minimum annual insurance premium of $12,000 to earn bonus interest|
Why should you choose the Standard Chartered Bonus$aver account?
While the Bonus$aver requires you to jump through hoops to earn your bonus interest, there are merits to applying for this account that gives up to 2.6% p.a. in interest.
Benefit #1: Get rewarded for each individual category
The Bonus$aver account rewards you with bonus interest rates for each category requirement you fulfil. These categories are not bundled together, which means you can still earn bonus interest just by fulfilling one category. For example, even if the only transaction you carried out for the month was to credit your salary of at least $3,000, you would still earn a bonus 0.2% p.a.
Benefit #2: Access 14 different currencies
Enable the multi-currency feature to access 14 different currencies from your personal Bonus$aver account. With this feature, you can convert your Singapore dollars at competitive FX rates to pay for your foreign currency spending without incurring overseas transaction fees. The ability to pay in multiple currencies could appeal to online shoppers, expatriates, overseas students and investors that make investments in foreign currencies.
Benefit #3: Higher bonus interest for spending more
Most savings accounts require you to make a minimum spend each month on your card before you can earn bonus interest and the Bonus$aver isn’t an exception. However, if you frequently spend more than $2,000 on your card, you get rewarded with higher interest of 0.75% p.a compared to the 0.25% p.a. you enjoy when you spend the minimum $500 required.
Benefit #4: Choose between a debit or credit card
When you open a Bonus$aver account, you will have to apply for a Bonus$aver debit or credit card as well. You will need this card in order to meet the account’s spending requirements. Unlike many high-yield savings accounts that come with credit cards, customers that still prefer debit cards do have this option with the Bonus$saver.
What charges or fees should you look out for?
- Minimum initial deposit: NIL
- Fall below fee (fee incurred if you fail to meet the minimum average daily balance of $3,000): $5 per month
- Early account closure fee: $30 (within 6 months of opening)
- Cheque book fee (optional): First cheque book free, subsequent cheque books $15 each
- Debit card annual fee: $20
- Credit card annual fee: $214 (Free for first 2 years)
How to apply?
To apply for a Bonus$aver account and a Bonus$aver debit card, you first have to be at least 18 years of age. If you are looking to apply for the Bonus$aver account and Bonus$aver credit card, you will have to be between 21 to 65 years old.
During the application process, Singaporeans and Singapore PRs will need to provide:
- Copy of NRIC (front and back)
- Latest computerised payslip, or latest 6 months’ CPF contribution history statement
Alternatively, you can also apply via MyInfo with your SingPass login, where forms are prefilled with no submission of documents needed.
Foreigners will have to provide:
- Copy of Passport (with at least 6 months’ validity)
- Copy of your Employment Pass
- Any of the following documents:
(i) Latest utility bill, rates or tax bill
(ii) Latest bank / credit card statement (e-Statements are accepted)
(iii) Rental agreement showing your address
(iv) Latest mobile phone statement or pay-TV statement
(v) Letter from employer stating current address
(vi) Government-issued document stating current address (e.g. IRAS, CPF, ICA)
Other additional documents that might be required (for Singaporeans, PRs and foreigners) include:
- Latest computerised payslip
- Latest Income Tax Notice of Assessment (NOA) or latest 3 months of commission statement from same employer
Existing Standard Chartered credit cardholders have it easy. No documents will be required for you to open the Bonus$aver account, unless there has been a recent change to your income, where you will have to submit your updated documents for review.
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