HSBC Advance Credit Card: Who Should Apply?

HSBC Advance Credit Card: Who Should Apply?

Flat Rate 3.5% Cashback for Relatively High Spenders

Good for

  • Affluent consumers who spend S$2,000-S$8,000/month
  • People looking for easy, low-maintenance cashback
  • Those who can deposit monthly fresh funds of S$2,000

Bad for

  • Consumers with an average or below-average spend
  • Travellers who prioritise miles & travel perks
  • People with highly specialised spend behaviors

Analyst's Rating

4.5/5.0

Affluent consumers interested in HSBC Advance Credit Card can earn up to S$3,600/year cashback, leading the market in rewards potential. With S$2,000 monthly spend, cardholders can max out the flat 3.5% cashback rate, capped at S$300/month. To qualify for this bonus rate, in addition to spending at least S$2,000/month, customers should deposit S$2,000/month in fresh funds, otherwise the cashback rate drops to 2.5% for spend above S$2,000 and 1.5% for spend below S$2,000, capped at S$70/month. HSBC Advance Card is a great option if you want to maximise rewards with minimal maintenance.

ProsCons
  • Up to 3.5% flat cashback for spend above S$2,000 and fresh funds deposit of S$2,000/month
  • S$300/mo cap when qualify for bonus cashback
  • Up to 16% fuel savings with Caltex or 14% with Shell
Promotions:
  • New cardholders can choose to receive either S$120 cashback with S$500 min spend or S$50 cashback with 1 transaction or S$30 when you apply with MyInfo ia SingPass (until Apr.30,2021)
  • Existing HSBC cardmembers receive S$30 cashback w/ min spend of S$500 (until Apr.30,2021)
  • Need to deposit S$2,000 fresh funds monthly to qualify for bonus rate
  • S$2,000 minimum spend to access top rates
  • Lacks specialized rates for specific categories
  • Does not offer travel perks

What Makes HSBC Advance Card Stand Out

HSBC Advance Card makes it easy for affluent consumers to maximise cashback with little maintenance, as long as they qualify for bonus cashback rates. The card offers customers 2.5% flat rate cashback when monthly spend is above S$2,000 (2.5% when below), which is far above competitor Standard Chartered Unlimited Cashback Card's 1.5% rate. HSBC Advance Card also caps earnings at S$70/month. In order to qualify for the bonus cashback rate of additional 1%, all you need is to deposit at least S$2,000 in fresh funds to your account each month and charge at least five transactions. This additional step will allow you to raise the cashback cap from S$70 to S$300/month, which is S$3,600/year in savings– the highest earning potential for a capped card on the market!

Monthly SpendHSBC Advance CardUOB One CardSC Unlimited Cashback Card
S$2,000S$70S$100 (cap)S$30
S$4,000S$140S$100 (cap)S$60
S$8,000S$280S$100 (cap)S$120

HSBC Advance Card isn't for everyone, however. Consumers with lower or more focused spending may prefer alternatives. People who primarily spend on dining, transport, petrol, medical and other select categories can earn S$100 more quickly and after a lower minimum spend requirement with CIMB Platinum MasterCard, though HSBC Advance Card has a higher monthly cap. On the other hand, very high spenders might prefer an unlimited cashback card. Ultimately, HSBC Advance Cardholders would need to spend S$8,571 per month to max out their rewards potential to S$3,600 per year.

CIMB Platinum MasterCardHSBC Advance Card
Max Rate10%*3.5%
Card FeeFreeS$192.60
Mo. Spend to Unlock RateS$600S$2,000
Spend to earn S$100S$1,000S$2,857
Spend to earn S$300Above CapS$8,571
Max Cashback per YearS$1,200S$3,600
* 10% Cashback for Dining, Transport & Petrol, Health & Medical, Travel Spend in Foreign Currency and spend with Select Electronics and Furnishings Vendors

In order to take full advantage of what HSBC Advance Credit Card has to offer, depositing a monthly amount of at least S$2,000 and charging at least 5 transactions to your card is crucial to reaching the 3.5% cashback rate. The biggest difference this bonus rate makes is actually the cashback cap it offers, which is S$300/month, adding up to S$3,600 savings per year.

Base Cashback Rates OnlyBase + Bonus Cashback
Cashback for spend S$2,000/mo and below1.5%2.5%
Cashback for spend above S$2,000/mo2.5%3.5%
Monthly cashback capS$70S$300
Max annual earningsS$840S$3,600

Ultimately, customers with high monthly spend can earn some of the highest cashback rewards available on the market with little-to-no maintenance with HSBC Advance Card.

How Does HSBC Advance Card's Rewards Program Work?

Use our quick and easy-to-read guide below to learn how you you can redeem HSBC Advance Card rewards.

  • Every 1 dollar of cashback earned is equal to S$1
  • Cashback is credited to the cardholder's account monthly
  • HSBC reserves the right not to credit cashback to the account once it is suspended or closed

HSBC Advance Card Rewards Exclusions

Some credit card expenditures are ineligible for cash back or rebate. We identify these exclusions in the table below.

Exclusion CategoryDescription
Bank FeesCash advance; balance transfers; fees and charges (including finance charges, late charges, interest charges, annual fees); tax payments via HSBC tax payment facility; Installment Payment Plan; transactions made on brokerage/securities
Transfers & Bill PaymentsTransactions made on money payment/transfer websites; transactions relating to money orders, traveller's checks, gaming; AXS or ATM transactions; any pre-paid card top-ups including but not limited to EZ-Link, Transitlink or NETS Flashpay
Institutional PaymentsDonations/donations-in-kind (transactions tagged with MCC 8398 - charitable and social organizations)

HSBC Advance Card's Features and Benefits:

Details & Benefits
Annual FeeS$192.60, Waived for 1 year, subsequently waived for annual spending of S$12,500 (perpetually waived for Advance customers)
Annual Income Requirement30000 for locals, 40000 for foreigners
Card Details
  • Annual fee: S$192.60 (first year- waived)
  • 2.5% base cashback on purchases of S$2,000 and above
  • 1% bonus cashback when deposit min S$2,000 per month
  • Up to 16% fuel savings with Caltex and 14% petrol discount with Shell
  • Visa Concierge and e-Commerce purchase protection

Promotions:

  • New cardholders can choose to receive either S$120 cashback with S$500 min spend or S$50 cashback with 1 transaction or S$30 when you apply with MyInfo ia SingPass (until Apr.30,2021)
  • Existing HSBC cardmembers receive S$30 cashback w/ min spend of S$500 (until Apr.30,2021)

How does HSBC Advance Card Compare Against Other Cards?

Read our comparisons of HSBC Advance 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.

HSBC Advance Card is a market leader for value-to-consumer after two years based on an average monthly spend of S$2,000

HSBC Advance Card v. UOB One Card

Consider this if you want to maximise your cash rebate and spend about S$2,000 per month

Annual Income Requirement 30000
Foreigner Income Requirement 80000

While HSBC Advance Card is great for low-maintenance cashback, UOB One Card is excellent for those who can actively maintain a budget of at least S$2,000 per month. Cardholders can earn up to S$300 quarterly through a tiered rebate system, equivalent to 5% cashback on all spend. Consumers who spend even S$1 below S$2,000, for any month, drop in rewards potential to 3.33% cashback (yielding cashback between S$50 to S$100 quarterly). UOB One Card also has a S$192.60 fee, waived just 1 year. Overall, UOB One Card is a better option for consistent, average spenders, and is more competitive than HSBC Advance Card for non-Advance customers.

HSBC Advance Card v. Standard Chartered Unlimited Cashback Card

Consider this if you are interested in a simple card, with unlimited cashback

Annual Income Requirement 30000
Foreigner Income Requirement 60000

Standard Chartered Unlimited Cashback Card offers high spenders infinite earning potential with no minimum spend, at a 1.5% cashback rate. The card is SimplyGo functional and offers up to 21% fuel savings at Caltex, though its S$192.60 fee is waived only 2 years. SC Unlimited Cashback Card is, however, best suited for very high spenders (S$6,000+ per month). While its cashback rate is lower than HSBC Advance Card's, earnings are unlimited. Still, those with monthly spend between S$2,000 and S$8,000 will more quickly maximise earnings with HSBC Advance Card's 3.5% cashback rate.

HSBC Advance Card v. OCBC 365 Card

Consider this if you are looking for a credit card for general day-to-day use

Annual Income Requirement 30000
Foreigner Income Requirement 45000

Average spenders can avoid an annual fee with OCBC 365 Card, which offers 6% cashback on groceries, 5% on petrol, and 3% on groceries, transport, travel, and bill payments. Rates are unlocked with S$800 spend, compared to S$2,000 for 3.5% with HSBC Advance Card, but earnings are capped at S$80/month (compared to S$300). Cardholders can waive the S$192.60 fee with each annual spend of S$10,000. Ultimately, OCBC 365 Card is more accessible to average spenders, but is limiting for high spenders.

HSBC Advance Card v. CIMB Platinum MasterCard

CIMB Platinum Mastercard
CIMB Platinum Mastercard

Consider this if you want a specialised dining credit card without an annual fee

Consumers who mostly spend on dining, transport and medical can maximise cashback with the no-fee CIMB Platinum MasterCard. Cardholders earn 10% cashback on dining, transport and petrol, medical expenses, travel spend in foreign currency and purchases with select furnishings vendors after $800 monthly spend, capped at S$100–or, in other words, up to S$1,200 per year with just S$12,000 annual spend in these categories. HSBC Advance Card banking customers would need to spend S$34,286 to earn the equivalent. However, HSBC Advance Card offers flat rate cashback and therefore is more convenient for busy, affluent consumers. CIMB Visa Signature Card is more competitive than HSBC Advance Card for non-banking customers.

Carrie Arndt

Carrie is a Senior Analyst at ValueChampion, helping consumers find the best credit cards and other financial products based on quantitative and qualitative analysis. She previously led consumer studies worldwide as a Senior Research Executive at MMR Research, and led development & operations and BellaVetro. She attended Duke University and Penn State University, graduating with a degree in Political Science and Government. Her work has been featured on a variety of major media such as Yahoo Finance, Asia One, Buro, Zuu Online and more.

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