Liverpool vs Barcelona, Credit Cards Edition: Which Team Wins?

by Jacie Tan

Cash Back Credit Cards

Liverpool’s miraculous Champions League semi-final performance saw the English side overthrow Barcelona’s three-goal first-leg lead, comprehensively beating the Spanish champions 4-0 and secure a spot in the Champion’s League final. Liverpool may have proven themselves the victor on the field, but when it comes to the respective teams’ credit cards, which football club’s credit card would emerge the winner?

We take a look at the Maybank FC Barcelona Visa Signature and the Standard Chartered Liverpool Cashback Card to see which is the better cashback credit card.

Maybank FC Barcelona Visa Signature

The Maybank FC Barcelona is a straightforward cashback credit card: it offers 2% cashback on all retail purchases, capped at RM50 with no minimum spend requirement. As a major bonus, the card increases its cashback rate to 10% at a RM100 cap during the months of May and August, which is when football season ends and begins each year.

Standard Chartered Liverpool FC Cashback Card

The Standard Chartered Liverpool FC Cashback offers varying cashback rates depending on how much you spend each month. You are eligible for cashback as long as you spend a minimum of RM500 a month and get the highest rate of 5% when you spend RM1,500 and above. Like the Maybank FC Barcelona (besides in May and August), monthly cashback is capped at a maximum of RM50.

Monthly Retail Spend Cashback Cap
RM500 – RM799.99 2% RM10
RM800 – RM1,499.99 3% RM25
RM1,500 and above 5% RM50

Which card gives the better cashback returns?

We start off by looking at how much is the maximum total cashback each credit card can give you in a year. With the Maybank FC Barcelona, you can get a promising RM700 in cashback returns a year – but that’s only if you spend RM1,000 a month in May and August, and RM2,500 per month for the rest of the year. This means you have to spend a total of RM27,000 in a year to achieve that maximum RM700 in cashback.

Using the Standard Chartered Liverpool card, you get a lesser amount of RM600 total yearly cashback at the highest rate of cashback offered – but you only need to spend RM1,500 a month (RM18,000 per year) to reach this maximum amount. 

Clearly, the range of your expenditure plays an important part in determining which is the right cashback credit card for you – so let’s compare the two cards based on the differing amounts of monthly spend.

Breaking it down

For those who spend above RM2,500 a month

Verdict: The FC Barcelona takes the lead here. 2% of this amount would allow you to hit that RM50 of cashback each month, and you have the bonus months of May and August to give you an extra RM100 of cashback in a year compared to the Liverpool FC Cashback.

For those who spend over RM1,500 a month

Verdict: The Liverpool FC Cashback springs a counter-attack by earning RM50 worth of cashback by spending this much each month. If you were using the FC Barcelona’s 2% rate of cashback, you would have only earned RM30 of cashback.

For those who spend about RM1,000 a month

Verdict: This falls within the range of the Standard Chartered Liverpool FC’s 3% cashback rate, which is still higher than Maybank FC Barcelona’s 2%. But be wary of this offside trap: the cashback for this tier is capped at RM25, which may clip your returns the more you spend.

For those who spend around RM500 a month

Verdict: Here is where the Maybank FC Barcelona scores again. If you’re spending below RM800 a month, both cards offer the same cashback rate, but the Standard Chartered Liverpool will cap your effective cashback earnings. And of course, for monthly spend below RM500, you don’t get any cashback from the Liverpool card.

Watch out for the exclusions

Of course, there’s no use comparing the cashback returns blindly without taking into consideration the restrictions of each card. Starting from 1 June 2019, the FC Barcelona Visa Signature will not be giving cashback for spending on utilities and government bodies. Meanwhile, the Standard Chartered Liverpool does not offer cashback for petrol and insurance transactions, although they do count towards the minimum spend requirement.

Therefore, when calculating your monthly expenses to see which card you want to get, make sure to take these exclusions into consideration. For example, not getting cashback on utilities transactions may be a deal breaker for you – although you can just as easily get another credit card to get cashback specifically for paying your utility bills.

Check the eligibility requirements

The Maybank FC Barcelona Visa Signature scores major points for being free for life with no strings attached, while the Standard Chartered Liverpool FC Cashback has an annual fee of RM175, waived only for the first year. However, Standard Chartered is running a promotion until 31 October 2020 where cardholders get to redeem an official Liverpool Football Club jersey for free when you pay your annual fee. The 2019/2020 home jersey is worth RM299 - well above the card's annual fee.

As you know, you’ll have to spend more on the Maybank FC Barcelona than the Standard Chartered Liverpool to get the maximum monthly cashback, and the minimum income requirements of each card reflect this accordingly. You need to earn RM48,000 per year or RM4,000 a month to qualify for the Maybank FC Barcelona. For the Standard Chartered Liverpool, those who earn a minimum of RM36,000 per annum (RM3,000 per month) can apply.

Final score: which is the better cashback card?

You should be able to see from our examples above that there is no definitive winner when it comes to these two cashback credit cards; it really does depend on each individual’s monthly expenditure and spending patterns. Just like with actual football clubs, the Maybank FC Barcelona Visa Signature may be more than a credit card, but someone else may argue that the you'll never walk alone with the Standard Chartered Liverpool FC Cashback Card. 

But here's an overhead kick to end this match: if you spend above RM2,500 a month and use both cards, splitting RM1,500 on the LFC card and the remaining RM1,000 on the FCB card will yield RM70 in monthly cashback (and RM150 for May and August!) But would you use a card bearing a club crest that's not the one in your heart? That's a penalty we'll leave you to decide.