It’s iPhone season again! If you’re looking to buy a brand new phone for yourself (in this economy?!)
or to resell for profit, here are some cards you can use to maximise your rewards.
The iPhone 12 is really pricey, from the “lowest end” iPhone 12 mini going at $1,149, all the way to the 512GB iPhone 12 Pro Max going for a princely $2,299. While this is quite a chance to be earning cashback/miles, the high price tags also present some issues for the maximum capacities of most conditional cards.
Amex True Cashback + GrabPay Mastercard
Use for: Anywhere, max cap of $10,000 per month (GrabPay limit)
Rewards: 1.5% cashback (3% for new cardholders) + 0.8% Grab points
The Amex True Cashback card is the sole survivor after Mastercard and then Visa moved to reclassify Grab top-ups, rendering most cards ineligible for rewards. At present, the Amex TCB gives 1.5% cashback when you top up your Grab wallet, after which you can use your GrabPay Mastercard for your iPhone purchase and get further rewards in the form of Grab points which represents another 0.8% in rebate.
If you’re a new to the Amex TCB, check out the current rewards that make it even more compelling. At time of writing, the Amex card gives $120 via PayNow for new cardholders, and you get 3% cashback on your first $5,000 spend in the first six months.
New to bank
3% cashback for first $5,000 spend
$120 via PayNow with $500 spend within first month
OCBC Titanium Rewards
Use for: Best Denki, Apple, electronics retailers
Rewards: 4 miles per dollar, or 3.70% rebate in vouchers; +2% if bought at Best Denki!
The OCBC Titanium Rewards card is unique for being one of the only conditional rewards card that does not have a monthly cap. Instead, it has an annual cap of $12,000, and this makes it really useful for big ticket items like iPhone purchases; you can buy five sets of the 512GB iPhone 12 Pro Max before even coming close to the annual limit.
Even if you are not a miles person, the OCBC$ points earned by the Titanium Rewards card can be traded for various vouchers, and the effective rebate yield is 3.70%.
Do take note that this only applies to direct purchases from Apple or other electronic stores, and telcos (eg. phone purchases from Singtel, M1, Starhub etc.) are not eligible. On the bright side, if you can find stock at Best Denki, there’s a really nice additional 2% cashback on your purchase!
DBS Woman’s World Card
Use for: Online purchase $2,000 and under
Rewards: 4 miles per dollar or 2% in cash rebate (capped at $2,000 and must be online)
If you are purchasing online – which is probably the option Apple and telcos are encouraging given the pandemic – you can opt to use DBS Woman’s World Card for 4 miles per dollar. You can make full use of the monthly cap of $2,000 for all but the most expensive models. Unlike the OCBC Titanium Rewards, you can use this for telco’s online shops, and with subsidies from your phone plan, it is likely your upfront payment falls below the $2,000 mark even for the highest end iPhone.
New to bank
Use code 150CASH for $150 cashback on $800 spend
Maybank Family and Friends
Use for: Purchase from telco between $800 to $1,000
Rewards: Up to 8% cashback
If you’re getting your iPhone from your telco, Maybank Family and Friends is a great choice. The sweet spot to aim for is between $800 to $1,000 of spend for 8% cashback, but even if your phone is around $1,400 after subsidy, you still get 8% on the first $1,000 and 0.3% on the subsequent $400, netting you $81.20 in cashback which is an effective 5.8% cashback yield. That’s still much higher than most cards can get you.
Family and Friends
New to bank
$100 cashback (spend $250/mth for 2 months)
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Other notable promos at the moment: