Citibank SMRT Card: Should You Apply?

Citibank SMRT Card: Should You Apply?

Great EZ Link + cash back card for young adults who spend on food, movies and shopping

Good for

  • Commuters who frequently use EZ-Link
  • Young professionals with a modest budget
  • Lower spenders balancing essentials & leisure

Bad for

  • Families & people with higher monthly spend
  • People who dislike merchant restrictions
  • Specialised spenders (ie dining, shopping)

Editor's Rating

3.5/5.0

If you're a young professional looking to earn on both everyday & leisure spend, Citi SMRT Card is your best bet. It's one of the few cashback cards on the market with no minimum spend requirement, so you can quickly earn high rates even if you're on a budget. Cardholders earn 5% rebate on coffee & fast food, groceries and cinemas, 3% on online shopping, and 2% on health & beauty, all with select merchants. Citi SMRT Card stands out because it's EZ-Link compatible and rewards 2% rebate for Auto Top-Ups. Competitors not only have higher minimums, they also reward fewer types of spend, making Citi SMRT Card the absolute best card for young professionals and commuters.

ProsCons
  • 5% rebate on coffee, fast food, groceries & cinemas
  • 3% rebate on online shopping
  • 2% rebate with select health & beauty merchants
  • EZ-Link functionality with 2% rebate on Auto Top-Ups
  • No minimum spend requirement
  • Earnings capped at just S$50/month (S$600/year)
  • Only select merchants eligible for rebates
Promotions:
  • Earn S$120 cash rebate w/ S$1,200 spend in 1st 3mo
Card Overview
Pros:
  • 5% rebates on coffee & fast food chains, groceries, cinemas
  • 3% rebate on online shopping
  • 2% rebate with select health & beauty merchants
  • EZ-Link functionality with 2% rebate on Auto Top-Ups
  • No minimum spend requirement
  • Promotions: Earn S$120 cash rebate w/ S$1,200 spend in 1st 3mo
Cons:
  • Earnings capped at low S$50/month (S$600/year)
  • Only select merchants eligible for rebates

What Makes Citi SMRT Card Stand Out

Citi SMRT Card is great for commuters and young professionals who spend most of their money on transit, coffee, fast food, and groceries. It’s especially convenient for commuters because of its dual function as an EZ-Link Card. Unlike most other cards, Citi SMRT Card also offers 2% in savings for EZ-Reload Auto Top-ups. Because there's no minimum qualifying spend, the card is also very accessible to those on a modest budget. With rebates up to 5% for multiple spending categories, Citi SMRT Card offers a great way for young professionals to earn cash back on select daily spend.

Monthly Statement Retail PurchasesLess than S$300S$300 or More
Groceries4.7%5%
Coffee, Movies and Fast Food4.7%5%
Online Shopping2.7%3%
Health and Beauty1.7%2%
EZ-Reload Auto Top-up1.7%2%
All Other Spend-0.3%

Citi SMRT Card does have some notable limitations. For example, total rebate is capped at only S$600 per year (S$50 per month). In addition, the 5% rebate on groceries and 2% rebate on EZ-Reload Auto Top-Ups only apply to transactions above S$50 and S$30, respectively. Smaller transactions receive a lower rebate. Finally, online transactions on groceries, movies or food can only earn 3% instead of 5%, and online travel bookings are excluded from the 3% rate.

Different Cashback Earnings at Different Spend Levels for Groceries and EZ-Reload

Grocery SpendEZ-Reload Spend
Spend AmtRateEarnedRateEarned
S$30.03%S$0.91%S$0.3
S$40.03%S$1.22%S$0.8
S$50.05%S$2.52%S$1.0

Citi SMRT Card is a great match for young professionals with a modest budget because of its tailored rebates and affordability. With a 2-year waiver of the S$192.6 annual fee, the card bridges first entering the workforce to eventually earning more, and considering switching to a card with greater cashback potential (for example, the Citi Cash Back Card). In this light, average to affluent spenders with more diversified spending can spend more and earn more cashback with other credit cards.

How Does Citi SMRT Card's Rebate Program Work?

Use our quick guide below to learn how you can redeem SMRT$.

  • Rebates are earned as SMRT$, where 1 SMRT$ is equal in value to S$1
  • SMRT$ earned by supplementary card(s) is credited to the principal account
  • SMRT$ can be redeemed as cash rebate or as a shopping voucher
  • SMRT$ can be redeemed in units of 5 as cash rebate or in units of 10 as a voucher
  • SMRT$ are valid for 15 months from the the qualifying period during which they're earned
  • Redeemed rewards vouchers are valid for 3 months following their date of issue

Citi SMRT Card's Features and Benefits:

Card Overview
  • Annual Fee: S$192.6, Waived for 2 years
  • Income Requirement: S$30,000 for locals, S$42,000 for foreigners
Rewards Rate Details
  • EZ-Link compatible with 2% rebate Auto Top-Up (min S$30)
  • Up to 7% rebate on groceries (min $50) at FairPrice, FairPrice Xtra Kallang Wave, Giant, Sheng Siong
  • Up to 5% rebate at select café & fast food chains (BreadTalk, Burger King, KFC, McDonald's, Pizza Hut, PastaMania, Sakae Sushi, Subway, Coffee Club, Dome Café, Gloria Jean's Coffee, Starbucks, Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, The Connoisseur Concerto, Toast Box)
  • Up to 5% rebate at select cinemas (Cathay Cineplexes, Filmgarde, Golden Village, Shaw Theatres)
  • 3% rebate on online shopping (excluding travel bookings)
  • Up to 14% off on petrol at Esso and Shell
  • 2% rebate at Watson’s, Guardian, NTUC Unity Healthcare, GNC, Nature’s Farm
  • No minimum spend requirement
  • S$600 cap on SMRT$ rebate annually
Benefits & Perks
  • Citibank Gourmet Pleasures & Citi World Privileges
Promotions:
  • Earn S$120 cash rebate w/ S$1,200 spend in 1st 3mo
  • Travel Discounts: Up to 10% off bookings with Expedia & Bookings, 8% with Agoda, Hotels & Trip
  • Hotel & Buffet: Complimentary seasonal products at Buffet Town & Kiseki Japanese Buffet Restaurant, 15% off Lobby Lounge at Shangri-La Singapore (& more)

Citi SMRT Card's Rewards Exclusions

The following credit card expenditures are ineligible for cash back or rebate.

Annual fees, interest charges, late payment charges, GST, cash advances, instalment/easy/extended/equal payment plans, preferred payment plans, balance transfers, cash advances, quasi-cash transactions (remote stored value load, money transfers, truck stop transactions), wire transfer money orders (WTMOs), foreign currency money orders, travelers cheques, debt repayment, all fees charged by Citibank or third party, miscellaneous charges imposed by Citibank (unless otherwise stated in writing by Citibank)
Funds transfers using the card as source of funds, bill payments (including via Citibank Online or via any other channel or agent); any top-ups or payment of funds to payment service providers, prepaid cards and any prepaid accounts; all transit-related transactions; any stored value card purchase/reload; utilities (electric, gas, water, sanitary); payment to merchants including (but not limited to) AXS, Banc de Binary, BUS/MRT, MoneyBookers, OANDA, PayPal, SAM, Saxo Cap Markets, Skrill, SKR, SkyFX, TL-ABT, Transitlink, Youtrip
Member financial institutions (merchandise & services); securities brokers & dealers; insurance sales, underwriting and premiums/direct marketing insurance services; gambling and betting (lottery tickets, casino gambling chips, off-track betting, wagers at race tracks & more); education (schools, elementary and secondary colleges, universities, professional schools and junior colleges/schools, correspondence schools, business and secretarial schools, trade and vocational schools, any other educational services); charitable/religious organizations; political organisations; court costs including alimony & child support; fines; bail bond payments; tax payments; government services (including postal services) & intra-government purchases
Nondurable goods (not elsewhere classified); quasi-cash merchants; real estate agents & managers; cleaning, maintenance & janitorial services; automobile parking lots & garages; cigar stores and stands

How does the Citi SMRT Card Compare Against Other Cards?

Read our comparisons of Citi SMRT 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.

Citi SMRT Card has a higher-than-market average value-to-consumer after two years, based on an average monthly spend of S$2,000

Citi SMRT Card v. POSB Everyday Card

Consider this if you are a busy homemaker who want to maximise savings on groceries, utilities, personal care, and petrol

Annual Income Requirement S$30,000
Foreigner Income Requirement S$45,000

POSB Everyday Card is a great all-in-one card for moms and families looking to maximise cash back from a broad range of expenditures. With promotional rebates of up to 15% for dining, groceries, recurring telco and utilities bills, personal care, and petrol, it's fairly easy to earn on essentials. But while POSB Everyday Card rewards diversified spend, many of its rates are merchant-restricted and require cardholders to meet a minimum qualifying spend (which varies by consumer). The annual fee of S$192.60 is also only waived for the first year. While consumers who spend less than S$2k per month could benefit from the POSB Everyday Card, they might also consider the Citi SMRT Card because it has no minimum spend requirement and offers a 2 year fee waiver.

Citi SMRT Card v. OCBC 365

Consider this if you want a no-fee cashback card for food purchases, utilities and online travel bookings

Annual Income Requirement S$30,000
Foreigner Income Requirement S$45,000

OCBC 365 Card is a great no-fee card for consumers seeking cashback on food, utilities, and online travel bookings. With a 2-year annual fee waiver (subsequently waived with a minimum annual spend of S$10,000), the OCBC 365 Card offers the average consumer a low maintenance way to earn daily cashback. OCBC 365 stands out for rewarding recurring telco and utilities bills at a high rate of 3%, and for including online ordering and delivery within its dining and groceries rebate options, at 6% and 3% respectively. The card’s rebates, however, are contingent on a minimum qualifying spend of S$800, which may not be accessible to those with a modest budget. Consumers who spend less than S$2k per month might consider Citi SMRT Card instead as it has no minimum spend requirement.

Citi SMRT Card v. Citi Cash Back Card

Consider this if you spend mostly on food and transportation

Annual Income Requirement S$30,000
Foreigner Income Requirement S$42,000

Citi Cash Back Card is a great fit for the average spender, looking to earn cashback on food and petrol purchases. The card prioritizes spend within these areas, offering a relatively high cashback rate of 8% on dining, groceries, and petrol worldwide. These rates are available after a minimum qualifying spend of S$888 per month, which is fairly accessible for an average consumer spending about S$2k per month. One drawback is that cashback for 8% rates is capped at S$25 per category, and the general unlimited rate of 0.25% is quite low. While average spenders likely won’t be hindered by these caps, more affluent spenders might consider a card with broader spend categories and higher caps. Those who spend less than S$2k per month might still consider the Citi SMRT Card for its more evenly spread rebates and ability to earn without a minimum spend requirement.

Comments and Questions

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