With the number of international visitors in Singapore plunging from 1.69 million in January this year to a mere 8,912 in August, the adverse economic impact is arguably felt most by the local tourism sector. In a bid to shore up the battered industry, the government launched a S$320 million SingapoRediscovers Vouchers scheme—available for redemption from 1 Dec 2020 to 30 Jun 2021—to encourage Singapore residents to support local hotels, attractions, and tours. Of course, if you're like any other bargain-loving Singaporean, there's likely one question on your mind: "How can I maximise the value of my vouchers?" You're in luck; find the answers below.
Go For Bundle Deals Put Together On Authorised Booking Channels
Go for bundle deals on the 5 appointed booking platforms – Changi Recommends, GlobalTix, Traveloka, Trip.com, and Klook—whenever possible. That's because each platform is privy to exclusive bundle deals put together in collaboration with hotels and other attractions. As these bundle deals typically cost less than if you were to purchase the individual components separately, you could think of the savings you enjoy as additional discounts on top of your vouchers.
For example, the Oakwood Premier AMTD Singapore and Gardens by the Bay staycation package available on Changi Recommends for S$320 entitles you to a plethora of services and tickets (including 2 tickets to Garden by the Bay and fitness trials). Regularly, you'd have had to pay S$400 for the above. Also, when you take into account the fact that the stay also includes S$60 worth of dining credits, you're essentially enjoying a total savings of S$140 (S$80 from the price difference and S$60 from the dining credits).
Pay With The Right Credit Card To Enjoy Additional Discounts
In the best-case scenario, you'd be able to offset everything you purchase (e.g. attraction tickets, hotel staycations) entirely with your vouchers—so you don't have to fork out a single cent in cash. That said, if like most Singaporeans, you have a penchant for luxury staycations, this will prove nearly impossible. Besides, there's also the regulation which states that you cannot stack or combine your vouchers with another individual in the same redemption.
So, in cases where you have to top up on the difference, do make payment with the right credit cards. More specifically, go for those that provide you with additional discounts, or at the very least, cashback. For instance, as a UOB cardholder, you can enjoy up to a S$20 discount with a minimum spend of S$100 (after offsetting the cost with your vouchers).
Redeem All 6 Subsidised Child/Youth Tickets You're Entitled To
Have kids in tow? Parents, grandparents, relatives, and legal guardians of minors (i.e. Singapore citizens below the age of 18) can also purchase up to 6 child or youth tickets for local attractions, at S$10 off per ticket. In other words: you essentially get S$160 worth of vouchers. Although, admittedly, you don't get to spend it on yourself. Regardless, this is still an excellent cost-saving option for those with kids. A requirement to note for the redemption of subsidised child/youth tickets is that the adult must declare his/her familial relationship to the child. He/she must also have at least S$10 left in their SingapoRediscover vouchers balance. So, make sure you plan and book all 6 subsidised tickets before you redeem your vouchers on big-ticket items like hotel staycations.
Weigh Your Options Carefully Before You Spend Your Vouchers
The Covid-19 fatigue is real. However, as tempting as it may be for you to redeem the SingapoRediscover vouchers on the first attraction you see, you should still weigh your options carefully. Doing so can go a long way in ensuring you get the most bang for your buck from your vouchers. Also, here's a bonus tip: you might want to hold off on redeeming the vouchers; the Singapore Tourism Board has made it clear that more deals will continue to be rolled out during the 7 months that the scheme is in place.