Thursday, February 12, 2009

Rebates calculator for credit cards

I have shared before my opinions why I see credit card cash rebate is a better way to go especially if you wish to achieve greater savings. With direct cash rebates instead of receiving reward points, you have the freedom to spend the cash on anything that you want for example to offset or pay your future bills. You can read my article on Reward points or cash rebates.

During a crisis like now, I know more and more people are aware about the needs to reduce expenses. However no matter how much expenses you try to lower, you do still need to pay basic necessities like bills, groceries and cost of transportations. But with credit card payments, you can squeeze more savings out of those expenses.

There are many popular cash rebate credit cards in the market. To name the popular ones, they are the Citibank SMRT and Dividend cards, UOB One, POSB Everyday and Standard Chartered Manhattan cards. Depending on your spending habit, different combination of credit cards used can yield different amount of savings. As for me, I try to consolidate all my expenses which include bills, groceries and ezlink transactions to UOB One card. All my expenses add up nicely to about $300 or more each month.

If you have bigger expenses you may try to use different combination of credit cards to optimize your savings. Take note, I mention the word optimize in the previous line. In order to achieve optimization in savings, it is advisable that you PLAN your expenses before hand.

To help in the optimization process, I have created my first version of Rebates calculator for credit cards. In the excel file, you can try to forecast or plan your expenses to be charged under various credit cards. Your objective is to achieve the highest effective rebates in percentage based on your spending inputs. A higher effective cash rebate simply means you can achieve more savings with those combinations. I post below a screenshot of my excel file.

Screenshot of credit card rebates calculator

Take note my Rebates calculator for credit cards is still in its raw stage. I believe further improvements can be made if I receive feedback or gather enough interest and support from multiple users. So try it out!


Anonymous said...

This calculator is great.
But for the Dividend, I think Citibank is offering another 3% rebate, on top of the 5% going to DIV$

Anonymous said...

Sorry I didn't make myself clear. The 3% rebate is for Esso petrol.

Mike Dirnt said...

Hi Anonymous,

Thanks. can you show me where is the additional 3%? I believe the 3% is for promotional period only.

Thanks anyway. I made a minor mistake but no problem with the calculation. The 5% petrol should apply to all petrol companies instead of Esso only. I will include the update in my next version if any.

Even the convenience fee for ezlink auto top up is not reflected in effective rebates. Unless you are doing ezonline update, there is convenience fee. So need to be aware of that.

Anonymous said...

You can see if you visit Esso. They will put 3% rebate for Citibank cards.

Anyway, just a thought, since almost all petrol companies have tie in with some credit card company for 5%. Like UOB with Shell, HSBC with Caltex, POSB with SPC and Esso with DBS and Citibank. It feels like the rebate on Dividend is just another version of the discount. Do you agree?

Mike Dirnt said...

i dont drive so i didnt know. from the following website, you can earn up to 12.6% petrol savings.

by the way, the dividend card is 5% for all petrol companies

Mike Dirnt said...

my rebates calculation for petrol may not be comprehensive enough. you can visit the following website for the effective rebates/discounts on petrol for all credit cards in Singapore