Different people have different indicators to know that they’ve made it in life.
For me, I know I’ve made it if I’m able to order food without looking at the price tag.
For others, being able to live in a condo might be a sign of success.
Or being able to have the most exclusive credit cards at the back of their pocket.
After my part-time job at a private bank opened my eyes to the world of the elite, I realised that there are so many exciting perks for the upper class.
Ever wondered what are some privileges that are enjoyed by the crazy rich Asians just from owning a card?
Or…….. wanna know if you’re actually eligible for one? 😏
TL;DR: Are You Eligible for the Most Atas Credit Cards in the World?
|Credit Card||Annual Fee||How to Qualify||Privileges Include|
|American Express Centurion® Card||$7,490||Minimum spending of at least $300,000 per year|
Minimum annual income of $1 million
|Unlimited-visit Priority Pass membership for 4
Instant Elite status for hotel programmes
Emirates Skywards Gold Status
|Citi ULTIMA Card||$4,160||Minimum annual income of $500,000|
Minimum of $2 million (AUM) with Citibank AND spend $20,000 monthly for past 3 months
|Three unlimited-visit Priority Pass memberships
Complimentary companion air ticket
Buy One Get One Free hotel stays
|DBS Insignia Card||$3,210||Minimum annual income of $500,000|
Be a Treasures Private Client of DBS (Min AUM: $1.5million)
|Unlimited-visit Priority Pass membership for cardholder
Yearly complimentary 2-Night Hotel Stays
Expedited immigration passes during travel
Damai Spa Access in Singapore
|UOB Reserve Card||$3,852||Reserve Card: |
(Any one of the criteria)
Minimum annual income of $500,000
At least $2 million in deposit in UOB account or any other private bank
Private relationship with UOB or any other private bank
A high business or social profile
Spend over $200,000 with personal credit cards over the past 12 months
UOB Reserve Diamond Card:
Charge at least $1,000,000 to the UOB Reserve card within the first membership year to qualify
Spend $1,000,000 every year to retain card benefits
|Unlimited-visit Priority Pass membership for main cardholder
Access to private members-only clubs
Unlimited miles purchase
Additional privileges for Diamond cardmembers:
Complimentary meals and birthday treats
Complimentary second night hotel stay
American Express Centurion® Card
Some say that this is THE black card.
The one where you could whip it out in the middle of a restaurant and the whole crowd would turn silent.
It’s so exclusive that there is difficulty in finding information online about it.
And part of what makes the Centurion Card so mysterious is that there seems to be a secret formula behind who gets invited.
Nobody truly knows how they might get selected for it.
Yes, this card is by-invite only.
In Singapore, it seems like to be able to even get started, you have to pay an initiation fee of $7,490, along with an annual fee of $7,490.
This means an upfront fee of close to $15,000.
For this card, rumour has it that there is a minimum spending of at least $300,000 per year.
(It’s like spending a HDB unit away every year. #richpeoplethings)
Also, successful applicants seem to have a Notice of Assessment (NOA) of more than S$1 million in income.
So what are some of the privileges you could enjoy with this card?
Airport Lounge Access
Airport lounge access seems to be common among credit cards, but this card takes it to the next level.
The principal cardholder and one supplementary member would each receive a Priority Pass with two free guests, with unlimited visits.
In addition, Centurion cardholders also get to enjoy access to:
- Delta Sky Clubs (when flying on Delta Airlines)
- Escape Lounges (USA)
- International American Express Lounges
- Plaza Premium Airport Lounges
- The Centurion Lounges
Check out the Centurion Lounge in Hong Kong, which features a private dining area that serves an a la carte menu of Cantonese delicacies by Lau Yiu Fai, the Executive Chef of a two Michelin star restaurant, or shower suites stocked with toiletries by L’Occitane.
Instant Elite Status for Hotels
Centurion cardholders can get to enjoy instant elite status for the following programmes:
- Hilton Honors Diamond
- Shangri-La Golden Circle Diamond
- IHG Platinum Elite
- Radisson Rewards Gold
- Marriott Bonvoy Gold
A Hilton Honors Diamond status could get you an upgrade to a suites-only section of the Conrad Bali as pictured above.
Emirates Skywards Gold Status
Another perk that Centurion Cardholders get to enjoy would be an instant Emirates Skywards Gold Status.
This is second-highest tier under the Emirates membership, and is usually awarded after 50,000 tier miles or 50 flights.
Some perks would include:
- Priority service through Emirates Contact Centres
- Guaranteed seats in Economy class, even on fully-booked flights
- Priority baggage delivery
- Complimentary lounge access
There are also welcome vouchers for Singapore cardholders, which include:
- S$150 Tower Club F&B voucher
- Complimentary one night stay at St Regis Singapore/W Singapore
- 4 x S$50 St Regis Singapore dining voucher
- 3 complimentary spa treatments at Spa Rael, The Ultimate and Adeva Spa
- Buy one night get one night free at selected Mandarin Oriental hotels
- S$50 Marriott Tang Plaza Hotel (min S$100 spend)
- Assorted Love Dining vouchers
- Assorted upgrade and special rate vouchers at the Fairmont/Swissotel Stamford
To be honest, the welcome vouchers seem lacklustre to me… given the price tag that comes along with this metal card.
There are also other perks that come with this card, such as a 24/7 personal concierge service where you could send in any sort of requests – such as getting theatre tickets, great seats at concerts or reservations at hard-to-get restaurants.
Citi ULTIMA Credit Card
The Citi ULTIMA credit card is the one which is of the highest tier in the Citi world, where it is also a by-invite card.
According to Citibank’s website, this is a card where you can expect impeccable services delivered with finesse that only connoisseurs of the good life can appreciate.
Wowow enough to get them senses tingling.
In order to be eligible for this card, you have to:
- Earn a minimum annual income of $500,000 or
- Have a minimum of S$2 million Assets Under Management (AUM) with Citibank and spend at least S$20,000 a month for the past 3 months on any credit card
For this card, the annual fee is $4,160, and you will be getting 375,000 ThankYou points (150,000 miles) in return.
Airport Lounge Access
The Citi ULTIMA card allows for three unlimited-visit Priority Pass memberships, which includes the main cardholder as well as two supplementary holders.
This does not include guests, as offered by the AMEX Centurion card.
However, this is still a pretty good deal as compared to the other luxury cards that are covered below.
Companion Airfare Program
Being a Citi Prestige member also comes with other perks, such as the Companion Airfare Program.
Under this program, cardholders get to receive a complimentary companion ticket when they purchase a full-fare First or Business Class ticket on the following eight carriers:
- American Airlines
- British Airways
- Etihad Airways
- Japan Airlines
- Qatar Airways
While this sounds great right off the bat(buy 1 get 1 free ticket?), the caveat is that the paid ticket would be charged the highest fare class fee, and there is no discount on the tax and airline surcharges.
Milelion did a great table to illustrate this:
|Singapore to New York (Business Class Return)||ULTIMA Main Cardholder||Your Travel Companion||Final Cost|
|Tax & Airline Surcharge||S$1,579||S$1,579||S$3,158|
|Ticket Issuance Fee*||S$80||S$80||S$160|
|*This fee is charged as US$60|
Surcharges could add on to a hefty sum if you’re going to places with high taxes.
If you’re traveling alone, you get to enjoy 15% off full-fare First and Business Class tickets.
For every First or Business Class ticket purchased with the ULTIMA, you can get complimentary airport meet and assist services and free one-way airport transfers.
Buy One Get One Free Hotel Stays
ULTIMA cardholders also get to enjoy a complimentary night for hotel stays with every night booked.
The list of participating hotels (under the VISA Infinite Luxury Collection) can be found here.
Besides that, cardholders automatically get to enjoy certain perks at these hotels, such as automatic room upgrades and VIP guest statuses.
However, it is important to note that this benefit cannot be utilised in Singapore.
Also, the cost of the complimentary night would be based on the average room rate for the entire stay.
For instance, if your first night costs $500 and the second costs $1,000, you will receive a $750 rebate.
In addition, taxes and surcharges for the second night are still chargeable.
Some additional benefits that come with this card include exclusive golf club privileges and dining discounts of up to 20% at high-end restaurants around Singapore.
DBS Insignia Credit Card
The DBS Insignia credit card is the premium card for the DBS arena.
As compared to the two cards listed above, the Insignia card comes at a lower annual fee of $3,210.
Still slightly out of budget for commoners like most of us though.
Paying the annual fee would get you 50,000 DBS Points (100,000 miles) each year.
The engraving of your name on its metal body already shows how atas this card is.
In order to be eligible for this card, it is possible to do a walk-in to any DBS branches to request for it.
However, to be invited for this card, you have to meet either of the following requirements:
- Have a minimum annual income of $500,000
- Be a Treasures Private Client of DBS (minimum Assets Under Management (AUM): $1.5million)
So what are some of the privileges that come with this card?
Airport Lounge Access
Also offering premium airport lounge access, cardholders also get to enjoy unlimited-visit Priority Pass membership.
However, this membership only extends to the main cardholder.
As compared to other cards of its league, it pales slightly in comparison given most others would extend this privilege to its supplementary cardholders.
Regardless, there are still over 1,300 airport lounges worldwide for Priority Pass members to lounge in.
Complimentary 2-Night Hotel Stays
Insignia cardholders get to have complimentary 2-night hotel stays every year at selected luxury hotels worldwide.
You can choose to frolick at The Gainsborough Bath Spa in the U.K., or chill at The Residence of Maldives.
There are also other luxury hotels situated in Australia, Bali, China, Indonesia and Korea.
The list looks impressive, which is probably a given for a card like this.
I mean, don’t you wanna just jump in and relax your afternoon away.
Expedited Immigration Passes During Travel
As a cardholder, you would also get to enjoy expedited immigration passes which allows accelerated immigration queues.
Special lanes for you to use while you are groggy from your red-eye flight.
Being rich means no more queueing time during traveling!
Ain’t got no time for queues, amirite?
There will be four Speedpasses available each year for this perk.
It seems pretty comprehensive with more than 500 participating airports worldwide.
Damai Spa Access in Singapore
In Singapore itself, you will get to enjoy complimentary access to the Damai Spa at Grand Hyatt Singapore.
This spa is mad luxurious (just look at the photo above) and specialises in treatments that focuses on the mind, body and soul.
It also features treatment processes and techniques from Chinese, Malay, Indian, and European cultures.
It’s like an amalgamation of the cultures you can find in Singapore.
From the website, a usual spa session would cost $280++ for 120 minutes.
Fancy a massage?
It is usually priced from $240++ onwards for a 90-minute session.
But for Insignia cardholders, feel free to drop by whenever you need a break for your tired legs from shopping!
Along with these privileges, other benefits would include discounted yacht rental rates and complimentary car club memberships.
UOB Reserve Credit Card
There seems to be two types of UOB Reserve cards – the UOB Reserve Card and the more exclusive UOB Reserve Diamond Card.
The UOB Reserve Card is also by-invite only.
In order to be eligible for this card, you must meet one of the following criteria:
- At least $2 million in deposit in UOB account or any other private bank
- Annual income of at least $500,000
- Spend over $200,000 with personal credit cards over the past 12 months
- A private relationship with UOB or any other private bank
- A high business or social profile
To qualify for the diamond version, you gotta charge at least $1,000,000 to your Reserve card within the first membership year.
For the Reserve card, the annual fee of $3,852 brings you 100,000 miles upon payment of fees.
You will also get another 50,000 miles when you spend $250,000 within a year.
Airport Lounge Access
Similar to the DBS Insignia Card, the Reserve card grants you an unlimited-visit Priority Pass membership pass.
This benefit also only extends to the main cardholder, and has no guest or supplementary card benefits.
Access to Private Members-Only Clubs
Under this card, you get to enjoy access to some of the most exclusive private clubs in Singapore.
For instance, in Singapore, you would get access to Sentosa Golf Club.
Also, cardholders are eligible for complimentary membership for the International Associate Club (IAC).
This high-end membership consists of more than 250 of the most illustrious private membership clubs worldwide.
As we all remember the good ol’ 5Cs back then (how Singaporeans used to define success), the C in Clubhouse is one of them.
It is where the rich mingle and spend their Sunday afternoons, and it still holds true today.
Unlimited Miles Purchase
Cardholders are able to purchase as many miles as they want, with no cap.
Miles would cost $0.19 each, and can be purchased via the UOB Reserve Payment Facility.
This might be useful for frequent travelers who are miles collectors too.
However, do note that this purchase does not count towards the $250,000 annual spend to redeem the additional 50,000 miles as mentioned above.
UOB Reserve Diamond Card Privileges
Being a UOB Reserve Diamond cardmember means more privileges, on top of those mentioned.
However, besides having to spend $1 million in the first year to qualify for this card, you are required to spend $1 million every year to maintain your membership and its perks.
Complimentary Meals and Birthday Treats
Every quarter, you will get to enjoy a complimentary meal for two at a restaurant selected by UOB.
Even though there isn’t a list of restaurants for us to check out, we can only expect high-end dining places with this level of curation.
For birthdays, cardholders also get to enjoy exclusive deals for the month.
It includes refreshments in the finest hotels and restaurants in Singapore.
Complimentary Second Night Hotel Stay
With this card, there is also the privilege of getting complimentary hotel stays for the second night, anywhere in the world.
Sounds amazing right?
This benefit is usable once per quarter and capped at S$400 per night.
While it is still rather workable, the price tag of spending $1 million per year seems a little hefty for such a cap on this benefit.
Are You Eligible for the Most Atas Credit Cards in the World?
After looking through this list, are you feeling even poorer (I am), or are you feeling motivated to chiong harder to attain these little metal babies?
For me, I am probably gonna stick to some of these best credit cards for an entry-level working adult.
If you have any questions regarding credit cards, you might have your queries already answered by our SeedlyCommunity!