18th May 2020 - 6 min read
While the most popular cards are all about low barriers of entry with modest benefits, crafting a card that’s suited to a particular niche is more challenging. Today, we take a look an example of such a card: the Standard Chartered JustONE Platinum Mastercard.
The Standard Chartered JustONE Platinum Mastercard is one of the more interesting cashback cards in Malaysia. It offers cashback for petrol, online, and auto-bill payments – a good mix of cashback categories, and one of very few cards to offer cashback for bills. While it looks like a generalist entry-level cashback credit card, you need to be understand its mechanics to maximise the cashback benefits.
At its most rewarding tier, the Standard Chartered JustONE Platinum boasts a 15% cashback rate and up to RM60 in cashback a month. The potential cashback earnings are generous, so let’s see how this card stands up when we take a closer look.
Like an increasing amount of cashback credit cards in Malaysia, the Standard Chartered JustONE Platinum Mastercard employs a tiered cashback rate system where you’d need to spend more to get a higher cashback percentage. The lower tiers aren’t particularly enticing, and the card only gets rewarding when you hit the last tier, which unlocks when you spend RM2,500 and above for that month.
|Monthly retail spend||Cashback rate||Cashback cap|
|RM1,000 – RM1,499.99||5%||RM12|
|RM1,500 – RM2,499.99||10%||RM28|
|RM2,500 and above||15%||*RM60|
*Cashback for online purchases will be capped at RM30 per month.
As mentioned above, the tiered cashback rates are applicable to three categories: petrol, online purchases, and auto-bill payments (only for insurance, telco, and utilities). For other categories of spend, the cashback rate is fixed at 0.2% regardless of spend amount.
You’ll also notice that there is a sub-cap of RM30 a month for online transactions, which you will have to take into account when planning on how to maximise your cashback through your monthly spend.
Unfortunately, Standard Chartered did not include groceries as one of the categories applicable for cashback. It would have made this card arguably one of the best cashback credit cards around as it would cover virtually every essential expenditure in a regular household in a single card. Nevertheless, the three categories still cover quite a large amount of the general family expenditure for the month, and these days you can always get your groceries on online platforms like Lazada and Shopee. More importantly, it is one of the few cashback credit cards left that offer cashback for utilities bills.
To maximise the cashback on the Standard Chartered JustONE Platinum Mastercard, you’ll need to first ensure your monthly expenditure is above RM2,500 to unlock the 15% tier. Remember also that while the higher cashback rates only apply to the three categories, retail spending outside of these categories still count towards the minimum retail purchase requirement; chances are, you will find yourself using the JustONE Platinum on expenditure outside of the cashback categories to hit the highest tiers.
Let’s break it down further with some calculations on the highest tier of cashback. The RM60 cap clearly isn’t 15% of RM2,500; this means that the effective cashback returns are actually lower at 2.4%. Taking the cap into consideration, you technically only get cashback returns for auto-billing, petrol, and online spend up to an expenditure amount of RM400 (note that the RM30 sub-cap for online transactions is met with RM200 in spending). The rest of the RM2,100 needed to unlock the tier can be used on other things like groceries, dining, and so on. Supplementary cards count towards this retail purchase requirement, which also make it easier to reach the overall RM2,500 monthly expenditure.
All things considered, this card is genuinely useful for a specific type of user. In particular, the breadwinners of the household will find this a pretty useful card. Those with children may find it easy to hit the RM2,500 threshold, which means you can actually get RM60 cashback each month just by paying for the essentials; in a year that amounts to RM720, which is one of the highest among cashback cards in Malaysia.
The Standard Chartered JustONE Platinum Mastercard is surprisingly easy to apply for. The minimum annual income is just RM36,000, or RM3,000 a month. Of course, it should be noted that even though a fresh graduate can qualify to apply for this card, it doesn’t necessarily mean they will be able to take full advantage of the card’s benefits.
If you earn the minimum RM3,000 a month, you will not be able to comfortably spend RM2,500 just to get the RM60 cashback. Moreover, there is a RM250 annual fee for this card, which is free for the first year. After that, your cashback earnings will still outweigh the cost of the annual fee if you’re earning RM60 in cashback a month, but it’s something to think about if you’re not tapping into the full potential of the JustONE Platinum’s cashback offerings.
From our analysis, it is clear that despite its low barrier of entry, the Standard Chartered JustONE Platinum Mastercard is more suited to bigger spenders rather than fresh graduates. For those who are looking for cashback cards that yield similar returns for much less monthly spend, you can check out the Maybank 2 Gold and the Public Bank Quantum credit cards instead.
But for the breadwinners – and by extension the person who pays for the bills every month – this is a credit card that yields one of the highest cashback amounts in the market. The caveat is simple: you must be confident of your capability to hit that RM2,500 expenditure every month, and this must include spending on petrol, auto-bill payments, and online expenditure.
If you feel that this is the right card for you, then go ahead and apply for the Standard Chartered JustONE Platinum Mastercard via RinggitPlus today.
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