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Credit profiles and credit cards

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Pinshot
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Credit profiles and credit cards

Postby Pinshot » Thu, 25 Feb 2016 11:14 pm

Im currently going through my relocation plans to Singapore from the UK.

I have great credit in the UK and i make use of credit cards with good benefits. I would like some advice on the credit system in singapore:

[*]Can i apply for a credit card in singapore on an EP but not PR as soon as i arrive. I assume i must have secured my accommodation first also?

[*]How does the credit system work? Do they have profiles like in the UK? Is it based on income (unlike the UK). What are my options with zero history in the country?

[*]Would anyone recommend the Citigroup global account? I understand i can apply for this before i get to the country and may not even need my address in Singapore yet.
https://www.ipb.citibank.com.sg/english ... DIPDBAENC1

Any other advise would be great thanks.

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Re: Credit profiles and credit cards

Postby Pinshot » Thu, 25 Feb 2016 11:54 pm

actually i dont think that Global account is for me. It aimed towards high net worth peoples.

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Re: Credit profiles and credit cards

Postby BBCWatcher » Fri, 26 Feb 2016 5:03 pm

Pinshot wrote:Can i apply for a credit card in singapore on an EP but not PR as soon as i arrive. I assume i must have secured my accommodation first also?

Yes. But why is this important?

Do they have profiles like in the UK?

Yes, there is a credit history system.

Is it based on income (unlike the UK).

Yes. There are income thresholds to qualify, and there are higher credit limits depending on income levels.

What are my options with zero history in the country?

1. If you need a bank account, open one. My current favorite is Citibank's "Tap and Save" account.
2. Apply for a credit card with that bank. Maybe you'll get one, maybe you won't.

But again, why is this important? You have a U.K. credit card. (Although maybe you should get a lower cost credit card before you go.) You can do everything a credit card allows you to do, like rent a car, then settle the bill with a Singapore ATM/debit card if you wish when you return the car. Are you planning to go into debt in Singapore on a credit card?

Would anyone recommend the Citigroup global account? I understand i can apply for this before i get to the country and may not even need my address in Singapore yet.

No. In my experience that account offered less than what you can get walking into Citibank Singapore as a new "Tap and Save" customer.

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Re: Credit profiles and credit cards

Postby Pinshot » Fri, 26 Feb 2016 10:46 pm

Hi BBC Watcher

Basically i need a singapore credit card because i travel all over the world. Maybe a different country each week on occasion. As my salary is paid in S Dollars i dont want to have to transfer money around. Also, i tend to use credit card for most purchases as a collect various points and will likely have to close my UK CC accounts as i dont want to be charged 3% foreign transaction fees and its a pain to pay the bill without already having sterling.

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Re: Credit profiles and credit cards

Postby BBCWatcher » Fri, 26 Feb 2016 10:55 pm

Pinshot wrote:Basically i need a singapore credit card because i travel all over the world.

That means you need ready access to funds, i.e. a payment card. It doesn't follow that you specifically need a credit card.

All Singapore issued payment cards, whether credit or debit, charge significant foreign transaction fees. The link I provided to low cost U.K. issued credit cards for foreign transactions is something you should pay attention to. It's quite likely it will be less expensive for you to transfer funds from Singapore to the U.K. and then to use a zero foreign transaction fee U.K. issued credit card when spending money outside Singapore.

The Citibank issued "Tap and Save" Visa debit card provides 1% rebates on point of sale purchases. Points, bonuses, and rebates are not unique to credit cards. But like all Singapore-issued payment cards the Tap and Save debit card is expensive to use for purchases outside Singapore.

Likewise, I cannot even come close to matching the cost profile of my preferred U.S. issued credit card that I use for all spending outside Singapore, even when factoring in (low cost) foreign currency transfer service to replenish funds in the U.S. I happen to have a Singapore-issued payment card, but I never use it outside Singapore. It's more expensive. All of them are.
Last edited by BBCWatcher on Fri, 26 Feb 2016 11:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Pinshot
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Re: Credit profiles and credit cards

Postby Pinshot » Fri, 26 Feb 2016 11:00 pm

Thank you for that information. The reason i say credit card is because it offers much more protection against fraud. I was once ripped off by 4k on a debit card and it was hirrible. Never got the full amount back. But credit card companies have been far more accommodating in similar situations as i guess its their money and not mine.

Im going to look into that card you mentioned. I will of course require a debit card too so that makes sense as a possible choice. I like the rebate of 1%.

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Re: Credit profiles and credit cards

Postby BBCWatcher » Fri, 26 Feb 2016 11:05 pm

Pinshot wrote:Thank you for that information. The reason i say credit card is because it offers much more protection against fraud.

All Singapore-issued payment cards when used in Singapore must be used in EMV chip mode. Magnetic stripe purchases are not authorized, and overseas spending is also blocked unless you explicitly enable it. Multifactor authorization (SMS text message PIN code verification) is standard for online and "card not present" purchases, although the "Tap and Save" card I mentioned doesn't allow any card-not-present purchases. There are consumer protections in Singapore on debit card transactions that are much better than those in the United Kingdom. You also have the option to maintain two accounts: a payment card linked account with a small balance and a second account with a much larger balance (hopefully), e.g. to receive your salary.

But I do not recommend using any Singapore-issued payment card, debit or credit, outside Singapore. You have much better offers available from U.K. issuers.


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