You Can Now Earn Miles on MRT/Bus with Apple Pay or Credit/Debit Cards
You would’ve heard recently that you could somehow pay for your MRT or Bus rides in Singapore using your credit/debit cards or your phone.
That’s where SimplyGo comes in. Having launched this month (June 2019), commuters can now use their Mastercard or Visa cards to pay for rides on public transport. This works even for cards loaded onto mobile phones via Apple Pay and Google Pay. Singtel’s Dash, Fitbit Pay and Samsung Pay works too.
For those new to this initiative, using SimplyGo means that your public transport fares are now charged directly to your credit card or debited from your bank account. That means no more queuing up to top up your ez-link card.
To sign up for the feature, head over to the SimplyGo portal and sign up for an account.
Cool, but where do the miles come in?
For the most part, earning miles on public transport fares were impossible as banks excluded top-ups to your ez-link or NETS cards. However, with SimplyGo, every dollar spent directly at the gantry will be eligible for rewards points (unless it’s with Citibank).
Earning rates follow the standard for your credit/debit card. With the BOC Elite Miles World Mastercard leading the pack at 1.5 mpd quickly followed by the UOB PRVI Miles portfolio of cards* (1.4 mpd) and the DBS Altitude Visa (1.2 mpd). Other cards like the KrisFlyer UOB Credit Card* (3.0mpd) and the Maybank Horizon (3.2mpd) require you to fulfil specific spending requirements before qualifying for the accelerated rates.
*Note that UOB awards miles in blocks of $5 each, so any spending below that or between $5 and $10 is essentially ‘useless’. UOB calculates your total expenditure on public transport for the week and charges you at one go for it.
But that’s not the main reason to switch SimplyGo right now. That honour goes to the myriad of promotions by banks to get users to Simply Go.
Your Mini-Guide to SimplyGo Promos
None, for some reason. Go figure.
The first 30,000 cardholders who register for the promo will receive $5 in cash back when they spend $30 worth of eligible BUS/MRT transactions by 31 July. More information here.
Be the first 10,000 Visa/first 2,000 new to SimplyGo Mastercard holders to register and spend at least $40 in BUS/MRT rides to get 25% cash back on the amount spent up to $15. More information here.
HSBC and Standard Chartered
Though earning miles on SimplyGo won’t supercharge your miles balance (unless you’re this guy), it’s great to know that even your daily commute can help you get that bit closer to your dream flight redemption. And we’re finally getting that much closer to the dream of cashless travel.
As an aside for iPhone users, note that Singapore is not participating (for now) in Apple’s Express Transit Mode, which means that you have to authenticate Apple Pay via Face/Touch ID first before tapping your phone on the card reader.
Here are Travelcene, we’re super excited for the introduction of SimplyGo as it means that you have to top up a card to take public transport ever again. Ever.
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