Life Hack #3- GrabPay MasterCard (GPMC)

I’m probably quite late to the game when it comes to getting the physical GrabPay MasterCard but better late than never.  Now you might ask me – what’s the point of activating the physical card if we already have a virtual version of GPMC? Well, I like to think of it as complimentary more than anything. 

The physical GrabPay MasterCard

So – GrabPay wallet as it stands today is limited to retailers who accept GrabPay as a form of payment where you would scan a QR code at the sales counter, and enter the price you like to pay using the wallet. The virtual GrabPay MasterCard doubles up as your go-to when it comes to online payment because you can use it as your normal credit card (and hence, enjoying the double dipping as highlighted in life hack #2). But there used to be a problem with offline purchase where retailers don’t accept GrabPay.

Well, the problem ceases to exist now, (now) that we have the physical GPMC. You can use it via PayWave or simply use the card to pay for bills at any restaurants that accept MasterCard. With this option, you get to achieve the holy grail of 4 mpd, including the additional Grab Rewards point that comes with it. Previously without this physical card, you would have to resort to using standard general credit card that gives you a measly 1.2 to 1.6 mpd (Examples of such are DBS Altitude, Citi PremierMiles)

Now, I like to show you how you can achieve quadruple dipping if you were to do grocery shopping in NTUC in a Capitaland Mall.

Note: I’ll save you the trouble of the math in calculating the cashback value for every dip (but if you are interested in the workings, read life hack #1 & #2)

1st dip: Top up GrabPay wallet using Citibank Rewards card

Benefit: 8.8% cashback (in the form of miles to redeem flight tickets)

2nd dip: Scan your Plus! card at the point of sale (NTUC self check out counter)

Benefit: 1.33% cashback (in the form of cash rebate)

3rd dip: Pay for your groceries bill via PayWave using the physical grabpay MasterCard

Benefit: 0.8% cashback (in the form of cash vouchers)

4th dip: Take a photo of the receipt in the CapitaRewards app

Benefit: 0.5% cashback (in the form of cash vouchers)

Popcorn, popcorn. Guess what the total cashback value will be?

Drumroll please






8.8 + 1.33+ 0.8 + 0.5 = 11.43%

In other words, you will get back $0.1143 rebate (miles + cashback) for every $1 spent using the physical GPMC.  

If 11.43% cashback doesn’t excite you, let’s isolate dip benefit #1 and look at the rewards solely from a miles redemption for flight ticket perspective. Let’s assume that we top up GrabPay $1k per month using Citi Rewards card. At the end of the year, we would have accumulated 48k miles (12k x 4). 48k miles can net you a business class round trip to Hong Kong via Singapore Airlines during their KrisFlyer spontaneous escape promotion with 6k miles to spare.

Standard miles redemption (You would need 61k miles to redeem for a HK J class ticket)
Spontaneous Escape promotion – You would now need 42k miles to redeem the same ticket

Now let’s work backwards. The price of purchasing a business class round trip to HK is $1727. Since I can now redeem the flight for free (using miles), the cashback I would get from topping up 12k into GrabPay Wallet would be 14.39% (instead of the 8.8% if we were to take the face value of each mile at $0.02).

A random search on for a business class flight to Hong Kong

This argument would only work if you have to spend $1k every month for anything really – which is realistic. So if you can make your dollar work harder for you (to get the most out of rebates), I don’t see why you wouldn’t.

Take time to digest the above. Hopefully you are as excited as me the next time you go to the grocery store (or running other errands) – knowing that you are one step closer to redeeming a free business flight by doing a few steps right. I will throw a teaser here by saying (accumulate your miles to redeem a flight to a further destination, and you will be surprised how much your cashback will increase)

To the advanced folks – Before I let you go, it’s worth noting that there is another alternative with using OBCB titanium card (in specific outlets) as they are currently giving 8mpd promo (which translates to roughly 16% cashback). Again, we use $0.02 as the value of each mile (read more here if it fascinates you). So my take is use this till the end of May (but bear in mind that there is cap of $500 spend limit). Once you have utilized that card, go back to the GPMC using GrabPay wallet top up using Citi Rewards card.

Ending off – sometimes all good things will come to an end, so enjoy it while it lasts. (There are murmurs that the 4mpd for topping up GrabPay wallet may be nerfed at some point).

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