Tigerair Platinum Credit Card Review

It’s the last week to sign-up for the promotional offer on the Tigerair Platinum Credit Card from Standard Chartered.  Until the 31st of January they are still offering the 2 air-tickets up front.  For views on what these are worth and how easy they are to use check out my follow-up post on redemptions.

When I was completing my Travel Saving Challenge I noticed an interesting link on the Tigerair site to a Tigerair Platinum Credit Card.

The Card is an interesting offer and could save you some cash depending on your spending habits when booking with Tiger.  The card has two plans – Upfront Rewards and Future Rewards.

Tigerair Credit Card sign-up page

Upfront Rewards

The card is offering the following on sign-up:

  • 2 free flight vouchers if you sign up to the credit card and are accepted prior to the 31st of January 2014.
  • The programme resets once you have spent $S5000 so effectively for each $S5000 you spend you get a free flight voucher, see the “catches” section for how useful this is.

Future Rewards Programme:

The card is offering the following on sign-up:

  • $S80 Cashback (similar offerings are available on other Standard Chartered credit cards)
  • Membership of the 360 Standard Chartered Rewards Programme – which means you have flexibility in redeeming your points earning elsewhere other than on Tiger flights (a Tiger flight will cost 8,000 points).

Benefits of both credit card programmes

The following are available for any Tiger bookings made through the Tiger/Standard Chartered booking tool using the credit card.

  • Standard seat selector: Any seat(s) in the standard rows with the exception of extra leg room seats and emergency exit row seats
    • Worth $S5 per flight
  • Priority boarding service boardmefirst
    • Worth $S6 per flight
  • Luggage Upsize™ from 20kg to 25kg
    • Worth $S3 per flight
  • Membership to ‘Stripes’ by Tigerair: An exclusive programme that gives you access to the hottest Tigerair deals and discounts

So potentially you could be saving $S14 per flight – not a great saving by any means.  In addition these are only worth it if you usually take up these options, personally I don’t.

All Supplementary cards are fee free and count towards the spend requirements

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Maximizing the benefits of the card

  • Use the voucher on expensive flights – generally longer distance and busier flights – again see catches section for issues with this.
  • It’s not clear from the terms and conditions whether the perks are for all those under the booking, so if you are travelling with a family the $S14 could be more valuable to you.
  • If you regularly travel with Tiger anyway and pay for the priority boarding etc then you might as well as you’ll save each time.
  • The eligibility criteria is low compared to many of the other frequent flyer cards so if you don’t have any it might be an option for you ($S30 and $S36,000 for Singaporeans/PR’s and Foreigners respectively)
  • If you opt for the Future Rewards programme it is probably going to be better value to use on tiger flights if the price is right as 8000 points only gets you a $S30 Voucher in say Pull & Bear, or Courts.
  • The vouchers including the taxes and fees, so will be more valuable on destinations that have higher landing and tax fees – you can check out the review of redemptions options here

    Tiger Card

The Catches:

  • For both programmes the vouchers can be used for any booking as there are no blackout dates, BUT the vouchers can only be used for certain booking classes.  I suspect that they can only be used for the lowest discounted fares and not the last minute ones that you may want to maximize the voucher for may be unavailable.  Tigerair actively market the fact that you should book 3 months in advance again an indication that it’s for the cheaper fare buckets.
  • If you opt for the Upfront programme and do not spend the required $S5000 then you’ll be charged a fee of $S100, but you still do receive the voucher.
  • A $S15 fee is levied on any of the vouchers used.
  • There is an annual fee of $S180 but this is waived for the first 2 years and for each subsequent if you spend a minimum of $S5000.
  • High Interest rate at 24.455% per annum (minimum).  Do not keep any spend on this card and pay off the full amount each month to avoid the interest costs.  I couldn’t find any information on balance transfer rates but assume they are high as this is a rewards card.
  • Usual list of non-earning spend including balance transfers, AXS payments etc – check the terms and conditions if you had a specific use in mind.
  • The Vouchers can only be used on the following flights out of Singapore:
    • Bangkok
    • Hat Yai
    • Ho Chi Minh
    • Jakarta
    • Krabi
    • Kuala Lumpur
    • Medan
    • Pekanbaru
    • Penang
    • Phuket
    • Surabaya

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Conclusions

If you find a use for the flight vouchers that would cost you more than $S150 per flight sector then this credit card maybe worth it as that’s a 3% return better than some of the cashback cards available in Singapore (including Standard Chartered’s own Manhattan) – check out the redemption options.  The bonus offer until the end of January in addition to the current offer is interesting and maybe worth a quick churn on the card assuming you have something around the value of $S5000 to spend on.  I’ve previously signed up for the $S80 cashback option through Standard Chartered and considering that many Tiger flights are under that value it may actually be a better option.