DBS has launched the Vantage Card as its attempt into the mass affluent income cards segment. The other DBS “exclusive” credit card is the DBS Insignia which is more geared towards high net worth individuals with a 500k per year income requirement. The new DBS Vantage Visa Infinite Card requires much less – 120k annual income.
As with other credit cards for the affluent such as the Citi Prestige or the UOB Visa Infinite, the DBS Vantage Visa Infinite Card comes with a host of benefits. In summary these are:
- 1.5 mile per S$1 local spend / 2.2 miles per S$1 overseas spend
- Ability to switch to cashback (2.2 miles = 2.2%)
- Accor Plus Explorer Membership (worth S$408)
- Dining privileges (through partnership with Dining City)
- 10 complimentary airport lounge visits per year with Priority Pass
- Visa concierge
The DBS Vantage Card also normally comes with a sign-up bonus of 25,000 miles applicable for both new-to-DBS and existing DBS cardholders with every payment of the S$5894 annual fee. Until 30th June 2023 (11:59PM), DBS is giving an extra 35,000 miles (new cardholders) / 15,000 (existing cardholders) upon signing up after payment of the annual fee and spending S$4,000 within 30 days of receiving the card. This adds up to 60,000 / 40,000 miles. You can sign up here.
You can also check the latest credit card sign-up promotions from other banks here
Let’s take a closer look at the benefits:
Miles Earn Rate
The miles earn rate of 1.5 miles per S$1 on local spend / 2.2 miles per S$1 on overseas spend (equivalent to 1.5% and 2.2% cashback) is very competitive if you pit it against other general spending cards (whether targeted to the affluent or not). The only one I know that’s higher for general spends is the UOB Absolute AMEX which gives 1.7% cashback for all spend. For a VISA/Mastercard, the DBS Vantage Card is hard to top.
That being said, when it comes to local spends, one can practically PayWave most transactions which means you could be better off paying with the likes of the HSBC Revolution Card or the UOB PPV and earn 4 miles per S$1 in the process. However, these cards have spending caps while the DBS Vantage Card does not. This is handy for large transactions.
Accor Plus Explorer Membership
The DBS Vantage Card comes with free Accor Plus Explorer membership (worth S$418). This membership comes with a host of other benefits:
- One complimentary hotel night in Asia-Pacific in Accor hotels
- Up to 50% dining in the restaurants of participating Accor hotels
- 10% off best available rate
- 15% off drinks
- Accor Live Limitless Silver status
- Access to Red Hot Rooms sale (up to 50% off)
- Member exclusive experiences
- Dining and accommodation discount vouchers
Do note that Accor Live Limitless Silver members get additional benefits such as late check-out and welcome drink. Overall, the Accor Plus Explorer is a good add-on to have although I would not regard it as the top reason to get the card unless you stay a lot in Accor properties or dine in their restaurants. That said, cardholders who don’t intend to make full use of the Accor membership can still get the minimum utility from this benefit by way of the free night hotel stay.
According to the DBS website, the card is supposed to give easier access to Michelin-awarded restaurants which are often hard to book. Discounts of up to 50% are also supposed to be offered. I have gone through the list of restaurants that partner with them and most provide 10% to 20% discount.
Priority Pass Membership (1o Free Visits / Year)
DBS Vantage Card holders get to visit Priority Pass lounges 10 times per year at no charge. This is comparably less than what other premium credit cards offer. Citi Prestige, Maybank Visa Infinite and HSBC Visa Infinite all give unlimited visits per year so this card falls quite short in this aspect. Frequent travelers or those who travel with families might see this as a sticking point.
Should you get the DBS Vantage Card?
If you stack up all the benefits of the DBS Vantage Card, there is no question that you will be getting much more than the S$594 that you are paying for, especially with the 60,000 miles offer running until 30th June 2023 (11:59PM). This equates to a cost of just S$0.0099 per mile for new cardholders or S$0.01485 for existing ones. For new cardholders (and provided you can spend S$4,000 in 30 days), this card is already worth getting. For existing DBS cardholders however, the S$0.01485 per mile cost is still decent enough but pales in comparison with the Citi Prestige offer which requires a slightly lower annual fee payment of S$540 for 48,000 sign-up bonus miles. The Citi Prestige offer also requires a much lower spend of just S$800 over the first 2 months to qualify.
|Issuing Card Company
|Offer For new-to-bank cardholders
|Offer for existing bank cardholders
|DBS Vantage Card
(S$0.0099 per mile)
(S$0.01485 per mile)
|Accor Plus Explorer (worth S$418)
10 Priority Pass Lounge Visits
Up to 2.2 miles per S$1 spend (overseas)
(S$0.01125 per mile)
(S$0.01125 per mile)
|Unlimited Priority Pass Access
Up to 2 miles per S$1 spend (overseas spend)
Do note the bonus miles provide for the bulk of the sign-up value for this card. If you are after the lounge access, the Citi Prestige is better off for a slightly lower annual fee. As for the Accor Plus Explorer membership, I do note that it’s worth S$418 and it’s good to have but I would rank this as a secondary benefit. This benefit will bode well for those who like staying in Accor hotels or dining in their restaurants. That said, cardholders who don’t intend to make use of the Accor membership can still get the minimum benefit by way of the free night hotel stay.
In conclusion, the main approach I would suggest is to sign-up for this card while the promotion is running for 60,000 bonus miles for new-to-DBS cardholders. After receiving the card, take advantage of the 4 miles per S$1 benefit and use this card for the relatively generous 1.5 miles (local)/2.2 miles (overseas) per S$1 for general spends (during situations PayWave transactions might disqualify you from getting bonus miles from other cards).
How to Apply
You can sign up for the DBS Vantage Card here.
If you have DBS Online Banking, you can easily apply for the card there. Do note that your income records need to be updated to reflect at least S$120,000 per year. You can easily do so by uploading new income documents.