Best Supplementary Credit Cards To Gift Your Partner Or Kids

Best Supplementary Credit Cards To Gift Your Partner Or Kids

Earn rewards faster as a family with these great deals!

Which 6 credit cards make for the best supplementary cards, and why. All your questions, answered.

What are supplementary credit cards and how do they work?

Supplementary credit cards allow credit card account holders to share credit card benefits and perks with family members, most commonly their spouse or children. They are also a means to gain additional credit, raising the total credit limit.  

This type of credit card is linked to a primary credit card, and typically shares the same reward structure. 

They also allow the supplementary cardmember to enjoy some or all of the same perks and privileges as the primary cardmember, although the degree to which this applies varies somewhat between providers. 

best credit cards for kids

Image Source: iStock

What are the advantages of using supplementary credit cards?

  • Earn rewards faster

Credit cards accrue rewards as you use them, so the more qualifying transactions you make, the faster you will earn your rewards. 

Typically, supplementary cards have their transactions combined with the primary card’s, boosting the value of qualifying transactions. In this way, supplementary cards can help you earn more rewards at a faster rate. 

  • Reduce annual fees

It is customary for at least the first supplementary credit card to be issued free of charge. 

Therefore, instead of applying (and paying for) two primary credit cards of the same type, households may switch one primary card to a supplementary card with no fees instead. 

Doing so will result in a reduction of their total annual fees. 

  • As an emergency fund

A supplementary credit card may also be kept as a source of emergency money, to be used when funds are required on short notice. 

For example, supplementary cards may be given to children studying overseas to cope with temporary fund shortages, instead of having to call home whenever they run out of money. Look out for a fraud protection feature, in which you can monitor dispute suspicious charges.

  • To teach financial concepts

Credit cards don’t work exactly the same way as money does, making it an ideal tool to teach children important financial concepts.

For example, they can be taught the financial concept of credit and debt, which goads them to manage their finances effectively instead of turning to borrowing whenever they run out of cash. 

As supplementary cards have adjustable credit limits, you can use them to teach children how to set and manage budgets. 

  • To pay for necessary services 

Supplying your children with a supplementary card can help them access important services. They can use their supplementary cards to pay for online food delivery, or to book ride-hailing services to get to where they need to go safely. 

Providing the means to pay for their own food and transport can be helpful in weaning coming-of-age children from relying too much on their parents or helpers, and encourage them towards independence.

What are the downsides of using supplementary credit cards? 

  • Risk of overspending 

It is important to bear in mind that the primary credit card account holder is ultimately liable for the entire credit card balance, regardless of whether the charges were racked up via supplementary cards or not. 

Therefore, if your spouse or children fail to exercise financial prudence, they run the risk of racking up a huge bill, which you’ll be on the hook for. 

If the supplementary cards and the main card have a shared credit limit, careless spending can also exhaust the credit card limit, which could cause bills and other financial obligations to go unpaid. You may even have to fork out extra for admin fees and late fees to rectify the situation. 

To help prevent this from happening, it is important to set a credit limit on each supplementary card. Any request to increase this limit must be reviewed by the primary cardmember. 

  • Rewards earned funneled to primary cardmember

Cashback earned is applied to the main account’s statement balance, while air miles and rewards points are awarded to the main cardmember. 

Since they helped to earn these rewards, the supplementary cardmembers may then feel justified in asking for a share of the rewards. However, dividing them up in a fair and equitable manner may be difficult or troublesome. 

  • No increase in rewards due to caps

Some types of rewards, such as cashback, are capped at a fixed amount, and do not increase with the addition of supplementary cards. 

If the primary cardmember is already reaching the rewards cap, there’s not much to be gained from adding on supplementary cards, unless they are air miles cards or unlimited cashback cards.

6 Popular Supplementary Credit Cards To Get

best credit cards for kids

Standard Chartered Unlimited Cashback Card

The SCB Unlimited Cashback Card gives you 1.5% cashback on all your spends, so the more transactions you charge to it, the more savings you’ll get. 

Which is why this makes a great supplementary card for your family members. Put a copy into the hands of your spouse and children – easy to do as annual fees are waived for up to five supplementary cards – and watch the savings rack up.

SingSaver Promotion: Receive a set of Sony WF1000XM3 True Wireless earbuds (worth $349) or $200 cash via PayNow, when you apply for the Standard Chartered Unlimited or Standard Chartered Rewards+ credit card! To be eligible for this promotion, you’ll have to be a new Standard Chartered Bank cardholder and activate your new card within the first 30 days of card approval. Also, a min. spend of $80 is required. If you already have a Standard Chartered credit card, you’ll be rewarded with $30 cash via PayNow when you sign up. Promotion is valid till 25 November 2020, T&Cs apply.

best credit cards for kids

UOB PRVI Miles American Express Card

The UOB PRVI Miles credit cards are known for their industry-leading local spend earn rate of 1.4 miles per dollar, but it’s the American Express variant that makes having supplementary cards rewarding. 

You’ll be awarded 20,000 air miles if you charge more than $50,000 in a year. If you struggle to reach that limit yourself, get some supplementary cards and have your family to help you. 

This reward encourages having more supplementary cards than less. However, do note that only annual fees for the first two supplementary cards are waived. 

SingSaver Promotion: Get $150 cash credit when you apply as a new UOB cardmember and make a minimum spend of $1,500. This promotion is valid for the first 200 new UOB cardmembers from now till 31 December 2020.

Best Supplementary Credit Cards To Gift Your Partner Or Kids

UOB One Card

The rebate structure may take some working out, but the gist is this: Spend at least $2,000 per month for three months, and it will let you earn the maximum cashback (equivalent to 5% cashback). 

Therefore, keeping your spending up as long as possible will be the most rewarding way to use this card. Which is where your family members come in: get them to add their spending to the pool in order to fulfil the $2,000 monthly spend and get the most cashback possible each quarter. 

SingSaver Promotion: Get $150 cash credit when you apply as a new UOB cardmember and make a minimum spend of $1,500. This promotion is valid for the first 200 new UOB cardmembers from now till 31 December 2020.

Best Supplementary Credit Cards To Gift Your Partner Or Kids

Citi PremierMiles Visa Card

The Citi PremierMiles Visa Card lets you earn air miles at 1.2 miles per dollar spent locally, and 2 miles per dollar overseas. 

Since Citi has made all supplementary cards free for life for this credit card, why not get your spouse and (fiscally responsible) kids a piece each and earn air miles on their spendings too? 

And if you’re worried about a glut of miles, don’t: Citi air miles have no expiry date. 

SingSaver exclusive promotion: Get an Apple Watch SE or $300 cash via PayNow when you apply for a qualifying Citibank credit card as a new cardmember.

You will have to make a qualifying spend transaction of any amount on your new card to be eligible. Existing Citibank cardmembers will get $30 cash via PayNow instead. Promotion is valid from 1 – 30 November 2020. Pick your Citibank card here!

Best Supplementary Credit Cards To Gift Your Partner Or Kids

OCBC 365 Credit Card

The OCBC 365 credit card offers up to $80 cashback each month (or $960 a year, not bad!), but you’ll have to spend at least $800 per month to get the cashback. Despite the slightly higher-than-average minimum monthly spend, some like it for the fact that there is no categorical limit on cashback earning, unlike other cards. 

Recruit your family members to help you hit the monthly cap by pooling their transactions, especially if they frequently pay for online food delivery (6% cashback), Grab rides (3% cashback) and telco bills (3% cashback).

It’s somewhat of a pity that the OCBC 365 supplementary card annual fees are waived only for the first two years. If you really want to save on the annual fee, maybe put your children on rotation with this card.

SingSaver promotion: Get S$100 GrabFood vouchers upon approval for new OCBC credit cardholders when you apply for the OCBC 365 credit card by 15 November 2020. Existing OCBC credit cardholders that apply for this card will still receive $50 GrabFood vouchers if you are the first 1,000 existing OCBC Cardholders to spend at least $300 on the card.

Best Supplementary Credit Cards To Gift Your Partner Or Kids

HSBC Advance Credit Card

The HSBC Advance Credit Card gives 1.5% unlimited cashback on all your spends, rising to 2.5% when you spend more than $2,000 a month. 

(Tip: Sign up for a HSBC Advance banking account and earn 1% more cashback, for a maximum of 3.5% cashback).

Ultimately, your cashback is capped at $70 per month (for non-Advance banking customers), but you can enjoy 2.5% cashback for up to $2,800 worth of transactions per month. 

If you can’t quite hit this limit on your own, get your spouse and/or children supplementary cards to pool their purchases. And since you can apply for up to 5 supplementary cards free, there’s little reason not to. 

Best Supplementary Credit Cards To Gift Your Partner Or Kids

This article was first published in SingSaver and republished on theAsianparent with permission.

SingSaver is a personal finance comparison platform which provides free, quick and easily accessible resources to help consumers understand personal finance products in Singapore; including credit cards, personal loans and travel insurance.

https://t.me/theAsianparentSG

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Any views or opinions expressed in this article are personal and belong solely to the author; and do not represent those of theAsianparent or its clients.

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