BOC Family Card: Is it Right for You?

Bank of China Family Rebate Card
Bank of China Family Rebate Card

BOC Family Card: Is it Right for You?

Well-Rounded Cashback–Even for Transit & Hospital Spend

Good for

  • Household spenders will well-rounded budgets
  • Consumers who typically take public transit
  • People who may have recurring medical spend

Bad for

  • Consumers with irregular spending habits
  • People who want to avoid paying an annual fee
  • Those looking for a straightforward rebate card

Editor's Rating

3.5/5.0

Bank of China Family Card is a great option for Singaporeans with moderate, diversified budgets. Cardholders who spend at least S$800/month earn elevated cashback rates in a variety of categories. Consumers earn 10% rebate on global dining and at movie theaters, 5% with select Family Club merchants (like Watsons & POPULAR Bookstore), 3% on contactless public transport transactions, and 3% on supermarket, hospital and online retail spend. Cardholders can earn up to S$25/month from each of these four groupings, for a potential total of up to S$100/month in earnings. While this rewards cap is quite competitive, cardholders would need to consciously distribute their budgets across all categories to maximise their earnings. Nonetheless, everyday consumers with considerable practical spend may be able to earn more cashback with BOC Family Card than with similar alternatives.

ProsCons
  • 10% rebate on dining & movies
  • 5% w/ "Family Club" marchants
  • 3% on public transport, supermarkets, hospitals bills & online spend
  • Grouped categories capped at S$25/mo
  • Few additional perks or privileges
  • General retail earns just 0.30% cashback
Card Overview
Pros:
  • 10% rebate on dining & movies
  • 5% w/ select marchants (Watsons, Best Denki & more)
  • 3% on public transport, supermarkets, hospitals & online
Cons:
  • Grouped categories capped at S$25/mo
  • Few additional perks or privileges
  • General retail earns just 0.30% cashback

What Makes BOC Family Credit Card Stand Out

BOC Family Card is a great everyday option for functional spenders–especially those with regular transit and medical spend. Cardholders who spend at least S$800/month are eligible for boosted rewards in a variety of categories: 10% rebate on global dining & at movie theaters, 5% with select "Family Club" merchants, 3% on contactless public transport spend and another 3% on supermarket, hospital & online retail spend. These categories cover an impressive breadth of expense areas, allowing consumers–especially those shopping for their family–to earn cashback on many of key purchases.

CategoryEligible TransactionsRebate RateCategory CapTotal Cap
DiningRestaurants, cafes, fast food restaurants & other eating establishments worldwide10%S$25S$100/mo
MoviesTransactions at any movie theatre in Singapore
Family Club MerchantsBest Denki, POPULAR Bookstore, Unity Pharmacy, Watsons, Welcia-BHG (subj. to change)5%S$25
Public TransportContactless card transit transactions on MRT Trains & SBS/SMRT Busses via TransitLink ABT System3%S$25
SupermarketsTransactions at major supermarkets & hypermarkets3%S$25
OnlineRetail transactions made via the internet (exc. apply)
Hospital BillsOn-site transactions made at hospitals in Singapore

BOC Family Card especially stands out by rewarding public transit and hospital spend. Both categories rarely earn boosted cashback–in fact, many competitor cards do not reward transit or medical spend at all. Both of BOC Family Card's categories are quite broad, however. Contactless card transit transactions on MRT Trains and SBS/SMRT Buses (via the TransitLink ABT system) and on-site transactions made at hospitals in Singapore are both eligible for 3% rebate. As a result, BOC Family Card is a great option for people seeking rewards for functional spending.

Still, BOC Family Card does have a few drawbacks. To begin with, category groupings (dining & movies; Family Club merchants; public transit and supermarkets, hospital & online spend) are each capped at S$25/month. While it's possible to earn up to S$100/month–which is quite competitive–cardholders would need to carefully track their spending to do so. Because rates vary between categories, consumers would also need to skew their spending in order to max out each cap. People with focused budgets or those with big dining budgets may not earn to their full potential with BOC Family Card.

Monthly Spend Required to Max Out Each Rewards Category

Rewards Category GroupRateCapSpend to Cap
Dining & Movies10%S$25S$250
Family Club Merchants5%S$25S$500
Public Transport3%S$25S$833
Supermarkets, Online, Hospitals3%S$25S$833
Total AmountS$100S$2,416

Nonetheless, BOC Family Card is still a great option for everyday household spenders looking to earn cashback on diversified spend. While there's a S$203.3 fee, it's waived the first year, allowing consumers to fully focus on earning and maxing out their rewards.

How Does BOC Family Card's Rewards Program Work?

Use our quick guide below to learn how you can redeem BOC Family Card's rewards.

  • Spend from principal and supplementary cardholders is combined when calculating rewards total (both count towards the same monthly earnings cap)
  • Cashback is credited to the card account in the subsequent billing cycle
  • Cashback can only be used to offset card transactions; it cannot be converted to or exchanged for cash, transferred or paid towards any cardmember liabilities
  • Cashback is valid for 2 years and then subsequently expires

BOC Family Credit Card's Features and Benefits:

Bank of China Family Rebate Card
Bank of China Family Rebate Card
Card Overview
  • Annual Fee: S$203.3, Waived for 1 year
  • Income Requirement: S$30,000 for locals, S$60,000 for foreigners
Rewards Rate Details
  • S$800 minimum spend to access elevated rates
  • 10% rebate on global dining & transactions at movie theaters, up to S$25/mo
  • 5% rebate w/ Family Club Merchants (Best Denki, POPULAR Bookstore, Unity Pharmacy, Watsons, Welcia-BHG & more), up to S$25/mo
  • 3% rebate on public transport (contactless transactions on MRT trains & SBS/SMRT Buses via SimplyGo), up to S$25/mo
  • 3% rebate on local supermarkets, online retail & hospitals, up to S$25/mo
  • 0.30% on general spend

BOC Family Card's Rewards Exclusions

Interest charges; card annual fees; finance charges; late payment charges; goods and services taxes; cash advances; fund transfers; purchases made through Installment Payment Plans (IPP); any form of purchase or statement instalments; tax payment plans; unposted, cancelled, disputed and refunded transactions
Utility bill payments; AXS payments; SAM payments; loading of prepaid accounts, cards and merchants (including but not limited to EZ-Link, TransitLink, NETS FlashPay, Singtel Dash, Youtrip, GrabPay, MatchMove Pay and HelloPay)
Payments made to government or government-related institutions (including but not limited to ACRA, CPF, HDB, ICA, LTA, MOM, URA, IRAS and town councils); any form of donations; any form of money transfer and remittance payments (including but not limited to Swiss Money Transfer, TransferWise and WorldRemit)
Payments made to government or government-related institutions (such as ACRA, CPF, HDB, ICA, LTA, MOM, URA, IRAS and town councils); financial institutions/services including banks and brokerages (such as helloPay, MatchMove Pay, Saxo Cap Markets, IG MARKETS, FOREX, MONEYBOOKERS, OANDA PACIFIC and Swiss Money Transfer); money transfer and remittance services (such as Swiss Money Transfer, TransferWise and WorldRemit); utility bill payments and other bill payments (such as SP Services, AXS, SAM payments); prepaid accounts and payment service providers (EZLINK [FEVO], EZLINK [IMAGINE], TransitLink, NETS FlashPay, SingTel Dash, Youtrip, GrabPay Top up, MatchMove Pay and HelloPay); cleaning, maintenance and janitorial services (such as Helpling and Sendhelper)

How does BOC Family Card Compare to Other Cards?

Read our comparisons of BOC Family Card with other cards and learn what makes each card unique in their own way. We compare and contrast each card to highlight its uniqueness to help you identify the card that you need.

Graph showing some of Singapore’s best credit cards in terms of value-to-consumer after two years, based on an average monthly spend of S$2,000
BOC Family Card v. OCBC 365 Card
OCBC 365 Card is another great "everyday" option that even comes with a spend-based fee waiver. Cardholders who spend at least S$800/month can earn up to 6% on dining & online food delivery, 3% on groceries, land transport, online travel bookings & recurring bill-pay and 0.3% on EZ-Link and Transitlink spend. While OCBC 365 Card does not reward medical spend and offers a much lower cashback rate on public transit, it does provide competitive cashback for bill-pay. Additionally, OCBC 365 Card's S$80/month rewards cap applies to total earnings, which allows consumers to spend more fluidly without excessive category tracking. OCBC 365 Card also stands out by offering an easy fee-waiver. Consumers who spend S$10k/year are exempt from the S$192.6 annual fee. Overall, OCBC 365 Card is a more affordable everyday option for household spenders whose budgets may vary slightly from month to month.
BOC Family Card v. Maybank Family & Friends Card
If you're a household spender that primarily shops in Singapore and Malaysia, you may want to consider Maybank Family & Friends Mastercard. Cardholders earn 5% cashback in these regions on fast food & food delivery, groceries, transport, data communications & online TV streaming all after just S$500 minimum spend. This is one of the most competitive rates on the market for lower spenders. However–even better–those who spend at least S$800/month earn 8% rebate in all of these categories, up to S$80/month in rewards. Given the extent of rewards-eligible spend, it's fairly easy for a family spender to achieve this minimum.


Maybank Family & Friends Card is best for those with S$1k/month budgets, however. At this level, cardholders unlock top rates, max out the monthly earnings cap, and even qualify for a fee-waiver (the S$180.0 fee is waived with S$12k annual spend). Overall, Maybank Family & Friends is an excellent, affordable option for local household spenders.

BOC Family Card v. CIMB Platinum Mastercard
Read Our Full Review allows cardholders to earn up to 10% cashback in a variety of categories without ever having to pay an annual fee. In fact, consumers who spend at least S$800/month earn 10% rebate on global dining, travel spend in foreign currency, transport & petrol, medical spend and with select local electronics & furnishings merchants. While many of these categories overlap with BOC Family Card's, it's important to point out that "transport" excludes EZ-Link & Transitlink and "medical" excludes government hospitals and polyclinics.


CIMB Platinum Mastercard is also similar in that it caps rewards by category, rather than based on overall spend. Each of its 5 spend categories are capped at just S$20/month, which can be maxed out with just S$200 area spend. Unfortunately, this requires cardholders to have an even more diversified budget, with consistent and even spend across all categories. While consumers can technically earn up to S$100/month, it's unlikely that they'll do so given the card's rewards structure. Perhaps the biggest perk is that consumers never have to pay an annual fee. However, those who are willing to do so are far more likely to maximise cashback with BOC Family Card.

BOC Family v. OCBC 365
OCBC 365 Card is another great "everyday" option that even comes with a spend-based fee waiver. Cardholders who spend at least S$800/month can earn up to 6% on dining & online food delivery, 3% on groceries, land transport, online travel bookings & recurring bill-pay and 0.3% on EZ-Link and Transitlink spend. While OCBC 365 Card does not reward medical spend and offers a much lower cashback rate on public transit, it does provide competitive cashback for bill-pay. Additionally, OCBC 365 Card's S$80/month rewards cap applies to total earnings, which allows consumers to spend more fluidly without excessive category tracking. OCBC 365 Card also stands out by offering an easy fee-waiver. Consumers who spend S$10k/year are exempt from the S$192.6 annual fee. Overall, OCBC 365 Card is a more affordable everyday option for household spenders whose budgets may vary slightly from month to month.
BOC Family v. Maybank Family & Friends
If you're a household spender that primarily shops in Singapore and Malaysia, you may want to consider Maybank Family & Friends Mastercard. Cardholders earn 5% cashback in these regions on fast food & food delivery, groceries, transport, data communications & online TV streaming all after just S$500 minimum spend. This is one of the most competitive rates on the market for lower spenders. However–even better–those who spend at least S$800/month earn 8% rebate in all of these categories, up to S$80/month in rewards. Given the extent of rewards-eligible spend, it's fairly easy for a family spender to achieve this minimum.


Maybank Family & Friends Card is best for those with S$1k/month budgets, however. At this level, cardholders unlock top rates, max out the monthly earnings cap, and even qualify for a fee-waiver (the S$180.0 fee is waived with S$12k annual spend). Overall, Maybank Family & Friends is an excellent, affordable option for local household spenders.

BOC Family v. CIMB Platinum Mastercard
Read Our Full Review allows cardholders to earn up to 10% cashback in a variety of categories without ever having to pay an annual fee. In fact, consumers who spend at least S$800/month earn 10% rebate on global dining, travel spend in foreign currency, transport & petrol, medical spend and with select local electronics & furnishings merchants. While many of these categories overlap with BOC Family Card's, it's important to point out that "transport" excludes EZ-Link & Transitlink and "medical" excludes government hospitals and polyclinics.


CIMB Platinum Mastercard is also similar in that it caps rewards by category, rather than based on overall spend. Each of its 5 spend categories are capped at just S$20/month, which can be maxed out with just S$200 area spend. Unfortunately, this requires cardholders to have an even more diversified budget, with consistent and even spend across all categories. While consumers can technically earn up to S$100/month, it's unlikely that they'll do so given the card's rewards structure. Perhaps the biggest perk is that consumers never have to pay an annual fee. However, those who are willing to do so are far more likely to maximise cashback with BOC Family Card.

Carrie Arndt

Carrie is a Senior Analyst at ValueChampion, specialising in credit cards in Singapore. She previously led consumer studies worldwide as a Senior Research Executive at MMR Research.

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