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Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Malaysia top 10 basic credit cards suitable for university students with low income

Saving money as a student on your credit card bills

Guest post by Sabrina Warmerdam (Share your tips with 50,000+ Malaysian students)

All of us know that students don’t have all the financial resources they would like to have as they have to finance their studies. Also, as student are usually not big spenders it's more beneficial for them to have a credit card which they don’t have to swipe a numerous amount of time each year to get an annual fee waived.

Malaysia Top 10 Basic Credit Cards for Students with Low Income

Students try in every way to save some money, so why not while using a credit card? A credit card has several features on which you can save some money.
  1. Pay attention on the annual fee rate, some credit cards have an annual fee (which can be either waived or not) and some credit cards have no annual fee at all. 
  2. Make your decision after you checked the interest rate of the credit card. Some credit cards have a lower interest rate compared to other credit cards.
  3. Check all the benefits and features of the credit card and make up your mind from which features you want to benefit. Credit cards do often have benefits for spending on petrol, retail and overseas. You can earn Air Miles with some credit cards and some of them have the benefit of a travel insurance. It’s important to all check these and to make up your mind whether you want to benefit from them or not. 
Only 6% of all credit cards available in Malaysia can be considered as basic credit cards. Therefore, it is very hard to find these cards. A basic credit card has the following criteria:
  1. Has no annual fee / or annual fee waiver
  2. Requires RM 2,500 monthly income at most
  3. Is available to anyone
So, of all the cards which met the criteria above, we made a top 10 list of basic credit cards and some helpful information.

Malaysia Top 10 Basic Credit Cards

1. BSN Classic Card-i


BSN’s Classic Card-i is one of the basic cards with a relatively low interest rate of only 13.5%. To be eligible for this credit card, your minimum income should be at least RM 2,000. So next to the fact that the card has no annual fee and is eligible to anyone, you can also benefit by earnings points. For each Ringgit spent on retail and petrol, you earn one point and for each Ringgit spent overseas you earn 2 points.

2. Maybank 2 Gold Card


Maybank’s 2 Gold Card has the lowest interest rate among the basic credit cards, only 8.88%. One downside of this credit card is that you should at least earn RM 2,500 each month in order to be eligible for this card. However, on the other hand you will also benefit from the fact that you can earn points while using this credit card. For every Ringgit spent on retail and overseas you’ll earn 5 points, for every Ringgit spent on petrol and flight purchases you will earn 1 point. Also, these points can be exchanged for Air Miles, namely, 4.77 points can be converted into 1 Enrich Mile, 1 KrisFlyer Mile or 1 Asia Mile.

3. CIMB Islamic Platinum


CIMB’s Islamic Platinum card is one of the several basic credit cards with an interest rate of 15%. Furthermore, you are eligible for this credit card when you have a monthly income of at least RM 2,000. Next to this, you can save some money by earning points while using your credit card. For each Ringgit spent on retail and petrol, you’ll earn 1 point. For each Ringgit spent overseas, you’ll earn 2 points. These points can be exchanged for Air Miles, 6 points can be converted into 1 Enrich Mile.

4. BSN Classic Card


BSN’s Classic Card has, compared to the other basic credit cards, a relatively low interest rate of only 13.5%. Furthermore, if your monthly income exceeds RM 2,000, you are eligible for this credit card. Next to these facts, it is always nice to save some more money by earning points while using your credit card. For each Ringgit spent on retail and petrol, you’ll earn 1 point. For each Ringgit spent overseas, you’ll earn 2 points. These points can be converted into Air Miles, 5.5 points can be exchanged to 1 Enrich Mile.

5. Maybank Ikhwan Gold Card


Maybank’s Ikhwan Gold Card has, just like a lot of other basic credit cards, an interest rate of 15%. To be eligible for this credit card, you should at least earn a monthly income of RM 2,000. Furthermore, with this credit card you can also earn points in order to save some more money. If you spend one Ringgit on retail, petrol and overseas, you’ll earn 1 point. Also, you’ll get 5% cashback on spending in selected grocery outlets.

6. AmBank Gold Card


AmBank’s Gold Card is also a basic credit card as it has no annual fee and is available to anyone. Furthermore, it has an interest rate of 15% and a minimum monthly required income of RM 2,000. You can save some more money with this credit card by earning points while using it. For each Ringgit spent on retail and overseas, you’ll earn 1 point. These points can be exchanged into Air Miles, 10 points can be converted into 1 Enrich Mile or 1 BIG Point. Next to the points and Air Miles, you can also benefit from a travel insurance of up to RM 500,000.

7. OCBC Titanium Blue/Pink


OCBC’s Titanium Blue / Pink credit card has a 15% interest rate, and a minimum monthly required income of RM 2,000. Furthermore, you can earn 0.1% cashback on retail and petrol spending and 1% cashback on spending overseas and online tranasactions.

8. CitiBank Choice Card


CitiBank’s Choice Card is also one of the basic credit cards. You are eligible for this credit card if your monthly income exceeds RM 2,000. Moreover, the credit card has an interest rate of 15%. Also, Citi Bank offers a few benefits while using this credit card. For each Ringgit spend on petrol and retail, you’ll earn 1 point. These earned points can be converted into Air Miles. 6.5 points can be exchanged for 1 Asia Mile, 7 points can be exchanged for 1 KrisFlyer Mile, and 8.5 points can be exchanged for 1 Enrich Mile.

9. Public Bank – Petron Gold Card


Public Bank’s Petron Gold Card is also part of the 6% basic credit cards. It has an interest rate of 15% and you are eligible for this credit card when your monthly income exceeds RM 2,000. Furthermore, with this card you get a 0.5% cashback on retail, petrol and overseas spending.

10. Hong Leong – I’m Card


The I’m Card of Hong Leong has an interest rate of 15%. Furthermore, you are eligible for this credit card if you have a monthly income of RM 2,000.

Choosing a credit card can be a difficult task as there are hundreds of credit cards available in the Malaysian market. However, narrowing your choice down to a basic credit card can make your search a lot easier and besides save you a little money too.

Sabrina Warmerdam is a data analyst intern at CompareHero.my, an online comparison website for credit cards, personal loans, and broadband. Next to comparisons, we regularly publish blog articles with insights about financial topics, e.g. Best Travel Credit Cards and Saving Money on Broadband.
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