Credit Card Basics

Every time you swipe your credit card, you get rewarded because each peso spent can be converted. Credit card rewards are similar to shopping mall rewards card or a privilege card to encourage frequent usage.

General credit card rewards

Credit cards earn points which can be converted to either cashback or airmiles – the two main rewards across most banks. However, you also have the option to convert your points to minor credit card promos like vouchers to your favourite hotel, restaurant or lifestyle establishments.

Points work the same as your SM Advantage or your Mercury Drug rewards card – you get a point for every swipe.

How much you spend to earn one point differs greatly on your bank and the purchase. You may earn one point every time you spend ₱10 to ₱200. It also depends on the purchase. For instance, your credit card earns one point for every ₱36 spent, but that doesn’t include purchases from supermarkets, drugstores, and gas stations, which may require higher spending of about ₱125 to earn the same point.

Some banks offer up to 5 times more credit card points if you’ve spent at least ₱10,000 in their partner establishments. Some banks offer 3 times bonus points for local shopping and dining. That can be 4 times bonus points for overseas spending.

Credit card reward #1: Cashback

Credit cards offer refunds after making certain purchases in supermarkets, gas stations, drug stores, restaurants as well as department store purchases.

These are called cashback credit cards which offer refunds in major purchases, like shopping, grocery, dining and fuel. The rate differs, though, and usually runs from 0.5% to 5%. It may depend on the item, too. For instance, Security Bank offers 5% cashback for supermarket purchases, 4% for gas purchases, 3% for utilities, and 2% for dining establishments, and 1% for shopping.
Credit card reward #2: Airmiles

If you’ve been shopping around to compare credit cards, you’ve probably seen miles, frequent flyer or airline miles credit card too often. Those are called airline miles credit cards, or airmiles credit cards, which are the best choice for frequent travellers.

Instead of earning cashbacks or points, you will be rewarded with miles which you can use to get your next plane ticket. And in many cases, you also get access to exclusive travel-related deals like hotel and dining discounts, travel insurance coverage, and access to VIP airport lounge.

Also note that some banks allow miles redemption only with their partner airlines like Cebu Pacific, Tiger Airways, Philippine Airlines and Cathay Pacific. But then again, many cards now allow mile usage with multiple partner airlines.

If you are geared towards airmiles, it’s good to know that some miles rewards expire. 

What kind of card is best for you?

Haven't decided yet? Compare credit cards with GoBear Philippines to see the credit card rewards on each card and help you decide on which card suits you best.