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Credit Card

The smell of money is intoxicating, that much is undeniable. However, those little pieces of plastics slotted in your wallet should feel a whole lot better than cold hard cash. Think about it: credit cards dangled by banks these days offer a great deal of privileges in terms of air miles, cashback, cash rebates and rewards points. The rolling interest rates notwithstanding, that could translate into major savings as you spend, something that cash cannot offer.

But the show-stealing feature of credit cards has to be the unbelievable convenience it brings to our hectic lives. We don’t have to leave our private kingdoms. Rather than journeying to the nearest fast food outlet, our credit cards can bring the food to us while we work. Rather than tapping our ez-link cards on public buses, our credit cards can comfortably send us from Point A to Point B without cash payment. Rather than stepping out to the living room to watch TV, our credit cards can unlock the latest Netflix blockbusters along with the couch potato king in us.

Have you caught our drift already? Here are some ways you can exploit your credit cards and get more out of your lifestyle for less.

ASOS and Net-A-Porter

Online shopping is like ice cream -- nobody really says no to it. It gives us the luxury of shopping round the clock, and it could also make us feel like we are shopping in the high fashion districts of Milan, Paris and New York. All from the comfort of our bedroom, no less. 

ASOS, a popular online retailer based in the UK, is rich in streetwear labels for the fashion forward, Yeezy treading trendsetters. They also have an outlet wing where you can find mid-market to luxury brands at a permanent sale. Spending above S$50 would get you free delivery. Why do you not own a credit card already?

Speaking of luxury brands, Net-A-Porter would be a heavenly escape for the chi-chi shopaholics. The high fashion online boutique, which features the likes of Gucci, Tom Ford, J.Crew, Alexander McQueen, Burberry and Miu Miu, is the exact reason why you are virtually flown to the aforementioned fashion capitals. Sure, your credit cards could have booked you those flights. But even better, they can be your personal shopping facilitator.

Deliveroo and Uber Eats

Frankly speaking, no one wants to get up from the couch to prepare dinner in the middle of a Netflix marathon. It’s simply not efficient to break the momentum. But what’s efficient is how you can order your dinner (plus supper if you’re forward thinking) through Deliveroo while the boring bits of the show is playing out. 

Whether you fancy a burger bash from Fatboy’s or gluten-free healthy eats from your go-to salad store, Deliveroo basically delivers the restaurant to you rather than have you physically move your butt to the restaurant. The minimum order is S$25 and delivery charges are at S$3, but that shouldn’t be an issue since you are going to feast like a king or if you have company.

A new kid on the food delivery block, Uber’s ambition has stretched beyond fetching passengers to fetching dinner. Uber Eats is fast gaining traction over its huge variety of participating restaurants and they don’t charge for delivery. The downer is that Uber Eats only deliver to selected areas in central Singapore, so tough luck if you stay at Jurong West.

Netflix and Viu

Don’t limit your credit card to just food, drinks and shopping. There is so much more you can do! Like using it for another creature comfort: binge-watching your favourite TV shows. 

Hell's Kitchen βœ… Bogota βœ… Hawkins βœ… Next stop: Harlem ✈️ #LukeCage

A photo posted by Netflix Asia (@netflixasia) on

If you are not already on the Netflix (and chill) bandwagon, you are so late to the party. There is a reason why everyone is doing it; when you create an account and start a subscription with your credit card, you get immediate access to a library of the hottest TV shows, with Marvel’s ‘Daredevil’ being somewhat of a Netflix poster boy.

At home, you can stream the shows on HD and study the pores of actors up close. Outside of home, you can download shows onto your smartphone and watch them on the way to your next appointment. And then on the legal side of things, you can be sure you won’t be receiving any warning letters about piracy.

At the rate you are binge-watching, running out of shows to watch is a real problem. What do you do? You turn to Viu, a new Asia-based online streaming service for the everyday auntie’s favourite Korean dramas. Similar to Netflix, you only need your credit card to kick start your on-the-go and on-the-spot entertainment.

RedMart and honestbee

Housewives (and househusbands), prepare to bid farewell to your daily NTUC Fairprice grocery runs. With the onset of RedMart and honestbee, they have effectively changed the way people shop for their milk and avocados. Both e-commerce platforms offer shoppers a similar experience; after adding everything from fresh produce to fruit juices into virtual baskets and then checking out with credit card payment, a runner would shop them for you and deliver your orders in under an hour. Or at least they would try to.

In the past, either your Mum or your domestic helper would be in charge of the groceries. It is safe to say that as long as you have a credit card in place, you’ll be saving everyone the trouble. They can use the extra time to play Temple Run 2 and then focus on the cooking when the delivery guy arrives.

Uber and Grab

In the days of yore, the NETS technology in taxis was rad. Now, it’s more like an expired fad, because you only need an app. Or two. The smartphone app-volution has produced the likes of Uber and Grab for us, and we merely have to download the apps from the virtual stores and input our credit card details. Instead of long waits, we can simply stay put at wherever we are until the Uber or Grab driver calls, which usually doesn’t take more than five minutes.

Moreover, both ride-sharing companies have stepped up their game with Uber Pool and GrabHitch, slashing standard fare prices by about half. Putting up with that other weird-smelling passenger in the car is a small sacrifice. At the end of the ride, we can save precious few seconds by alighting without frantically digging our wallets.

If you ask us, you really don’t need a car in Singapore to travel like royalty. You can accomplish that through a few taps on your phone and a piece of plastic.

Bonus: Apple Pay and Samsung Pay

At first, you don’t need cash. Now, you don’t need credit cards. With the introduction of Apple Pay and Samsung Pay, smartphones are the new credit card. 

Living like a king never felt so simple.