Priority Banking – Which bank would you choose with $200,000?

Last updated: 13/3/19

If you had S$200,000 in fresh funds, and had a choice to be a priority customer of one bank, which bank should you choose? Well, I asked the same question and started researching on the various banks and the various benefits that they had to offer. Let’s cut to the chase!

singapore-104681_1280
View of the Singapore river & Central Business District

Firstly, what is priority banking? In simple terms, you can think of priority banking as catering to the affluent upper middle class; somewhat like business class on an airline. In Singapore, you need to invest or park at least $150,000 to $350,000 in the bank to qualify. Terms such as premier, privilege, and priority are all synonymous.

The banks can tell you what they want, but it’s more interesting to hear from the man on the ground. I scrolled the forums in search of information and a few common themes pop up:

  • Priority lanes, generally less waiting time
  • You’ll be served by a ‘chio’ (pretty) or handsome relationship manager
  • You get served coffee, tea, juice, and sometimes even wine
  • Access to certain ‘investments’ that are not available for the typical layman (often riskier investments)
  • Every CNY, they’ll send you their premium red packets
  • You’ll get invited to attend investment talks and various events
  • The greater the $$$ invested with them, the greater the ‘love’

Private banking is one step up, somewhat like seating in First Class on an airline. Most banks will require you to have a minimum of $1,000,000 in bank. Clients, more commonly known as High Net Worth (HNW) individuals usually have at least $1,000,000 of Assets Under Management (AUM). There is a fantastic article that describes this. This is a topic for another day.

In Singapore, there are several banks to choose from, namely: CIMB, Citibank, DBS, HSBC, Maybank, OCBC, Standard Chartered, and UOB. Each bank has its own perks, and the details are best gotten from their website. I’ll be focusing on a few key areas:

  • Minimum AUM required
  • Credit Card (CC) tagged to account  (and a few major corresponding benefits)
  • Special/Unique Perks offered

 

I’ll be listing alphabetically. Mile earnings listed are per $1. Let’s go!

 

CIMB (CIMB Preferred)

CIMB
“It’s about protecting your family and your wealth” – Family orientated; I like!

Min AUM: S$250,000:

CC: CIMB preferred recognition card

Unique Perks: Nothing that really floats my boat. It sounds very generic

Click here to explore further

 

CITIBANK (Citigold)

Citigold
Travelling the world and early retirement? Shut up and sign me up! XD

Min AUM: S$200,000:

CC: Citi Prestige card

– Welcome gift of 25,000 miles (Pay annual fee of $535)

– 1.3 Citi Miles

– UNLIMITED entry to Priority Pass lounges

– Complimentary nights (min 4 nights)

– Airport limousine transfers (8 complimentary)

Unique Perk: Enjoy Citigold status when opening an account overseas

 

For greater details, click here for Citigold privileges and here for Citi Prestige CC.

 

DBS (DBS Treasures)

Screen Shot 2019-03-14 at 6.14.37 PM
Must be really popular. Word on the ground is that the Treasures Lounge is always crowded

Min AUM: S$350,000:

CC: DBS Treasures black elite card. Click here

– 3.2 Miles at selected boutiques (Very limited choices IMO) Click here

– Local spend: 1.2 miles,  Overseas: 2.4 miles

Perks: Nothing really specific except for special rates

Click here to go to DBS Treasures Website

 

HSBC (HSBC Premier)

Screen Shot 2019-03-14 at 6.07.34 PM
That hanging tent looks like a really exciting way to spend the night!

Min AUM: S$200,000:

CC: HSBC Premier Mastercard

Welcome gifts for new to Premier customers

– S$488 cash credit with at least S$200,000 fresh funds

– S$400 cash credit with at least $100,000 investment in eligible products

– S$400 cash credit when you refer a friend to HSBC Premier

– S$180 cash credit or 12,000 air miles with minimum s$600 spend within a month from Card Account Opening date

– Up to 4.88% p.a. bonus interest

Perks: Nothing really specific; Most banks offer the same standard perks. Click here

 

Maybank (Premier Wealth)

Maybank Premier
Classy website design, I like!

Min AUM: S$200,000:

CC: Premium Wealth World Mastercard

– Two complimentary airport transfers per calendar year

– Two complimentary access to Plaza premium lounge twice a year (selected airports)

– 10x treat points (4 miles) at certain boutiques, dining establishments and petrol kiosk

– Fee waiver when converting treat point to air miles

Unique Perks: Privilege medical offers and client appreciation events

Click here to go to Maybank’s Premier wealth banking page.

 

OCBC (Premier Banking)

Screen Shot 2019-03-14 at 5.57.39 PM
I wonder who he is… Looks like he could be someone’s son or friend!

Min AUM: S$200,000:

CC: OCBC Voyage (Visa Infinite)

– 1.6 miles* (dining), and 1.2 miles* (local retail spend)

*These miles don’t function as typical miles. I’ll elaborate in future posts.

– Voyage tax facility (accumulate miles for paying taxes through the card)

– Complimentary airport transfer (with min spend of $3,000 in a month)

Click here to view the Voyage card privileges.

Unique Perks: Privileges are pretty much tied to the voyage credit card

 

Standard Chartered (Priority Banking)

Stand Chart Priority
I can manage my own wealth, thank you. But if you have a good credit card, we can talk business!

Min AUM: S$200,000:

CC: Priority Visa Infinite Credit card

– 2.5 points (1 mile)

Perks: Nothing that really stands out. Benefits are quite mediocre IMO

 

UOB (Privilege Banking)

UOB Priviledge banking
The UOB logo looks like it’s on a permanent hashtag with more lines #UOB

Min AUM: S$350,000

CC: UOB Privilege Banking Card (This is NOT the UOB Visa Infinite Metal Card)

Perks: 1.45% per annum (upon depositing $350,000 of fresh funds)

Apart from that, nothing really stands out, just the usuals. Click here to explore further

 

This blog post is intended to be an introduction, a part 1 if you will. I hope to do a part 2 upon experiencing priority banking myself and from consolidating various real life experiences.

 

Disclaimer: While every effort has been taken to be as accurate as possible, mistakes in information can still occur. If there are mistakes in the information provided, contact me and I’ll update accordingly. As usual, dyodd!

 

 

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