Life Hack #8: Shopee

Oh wow.

I am back after a 2+ month hiatus (and social media cleanse)

It felt really good but more on that next time (if I remember).

In this post, I am back with another hack (yes!) and it is going to be useful if you do online household shopping, or better still – take Grab or use any of the online food delivery platform.

Without giving too much away – For the record, I am a believer of prioritizing time & energy over money, and so if it is a case of saving 30+ minutes for $10, I would adopt the former in 9 out of 10 (but as we say in business, context and accounting for local nuances matters so don’t quote me word for word, but embrace the spirit of the law).

Anyway since I mentioned Grab from the onset, one of the biggest news in the past week is the sunset of GrabPay Mastercard (GPMC). Or rather, the use case is significantly weaker now that you cannot enjoy 4mpd via CRV topup directly into Grab wallet (reference: old post).

I’m going to save you the spills and redirect you to other blogs that do a better job in detailing what happened here, but the TLDR is that the MCC for Grab top-up has changed, and you can no longer get any miles for using credit card (*cry*).

As sad as it sounds, the world (miles game) is still a beautiful thing and there are always alternatives.

The latest card that I am going to add to my arsenal of weapons is the HSBC revolution card (which basically operates similar to GPMC in that they reward 4mpd for every* contactless transaction). The caveat here is that the card operates in an inclusion fashion (meaning as long as you are transacting in departmental, travel, and dining categories among others, you are pretty safe).

In case you are wondering, I digress from the main post but thought it is a good reminder to put GPMC out there in case you are still adoring it religiously without doing the fact check (here is POFMA for you).

So let’s recircle back to life hack #8.

Shopee is an e-commerce app that I use literally every day. And this is coming from an user who preferred Lazada in the past, but has been won over. Before you read beyond the text, I am not a shopaholic but I’ll come to that in a bit.

In my head, the gamification of features in Shopee is pure gold. And I suspect the affiliation to Garena may have played a part in it? Who knows.

Anyhow, my writing is getting rusty so let me attempt to keep this post precise to the point of argument around value.

There are 3 reasons why you should put Shopee under your radar.

Reason #1: You save 15% instantly buying Grab vouchers for Food or Transport

This is probably the worst-kept secret but I am surprised there are not more people who knows this. Before you hail a ride in Grab, the trick is to search for Grab in Shopee, and look for vouchers in denomination of $5. You can buy any voucher that you want, and redeem the promo code in the Grab app for a direct ride offset.

If it helps, I tend to buy $10 Grab Transport voucher if I’m planning to take a Grab ride, and grab a $20 Grab Food voucher if I’m feeling lazy to go out and eat. Choosing the latter basically nets out the delivery fee to be negligible.

Grab vouchers on offer in Shopee.
After which, you will receive a Grab promo code under digital purchase in the Shopee app

In case you are wondering. This doesn’t just apply to Grab. You can find Foodpanda and Comfort vouchers in Shopee too (how nice).

And if you are feeling adventurous, you can enjoy triple dip by virtue of using DBS WWMC to pay for your Shopee transactions, and get 4mpd for every dollar spent. The second (and intermediary dip) is that DBS occasionally run cashback promo directly in their lifestyle app. So all you need to do is to register for the cashback every month, and spend above a certain threshold to get a 8% cashback.

This was what I got in end July after spending $200 on DBS WWMC.

It just works. Thank me if this has been missing in your (grab) life all this while.

Reason #2: You get cashback rebates (almost) everytime you buy something in Shopee

If you know me, I am a miles guy through and through, but that doesn’t stop me from being flexible with combining cashback benefits if the opportunity arises.

In the case of Shopee, you basically get the best of two world – Get cashback in the form of Shopee coins (in which you can offset your next purchase), and then pay using your credit card (DBS WWMC or OCBC Titanium).

The beauty of Shopee is that they give out cashback vouchers every week for as long as I can remember. So there are no excuses why you won’t use them for your purchases.

Platform voucher that you can apply in Shopee before checkout, and redeem your coins for instant cashback
Get cashback vouchers that Shopee releases from time to time

Reason #3: You literally get free money for playing games in Shopee

Just by checking in daily to Shopee for a week will give you about 15 coins – which is equivalent to $0.15. It is not ground breaker but it only takes you a few seconds to click on the app, so it is easy pickings really.

Check in daily to get Shopee coins (1 coin = $0.01)

Next, they have a bunch of games that enable you to get coins.

The concept of Shopee Farm (one of the games in the app) is just simple and brilliant. You ‘water’ your plant between 1 to 4 days depending on the size of the reward.

On average, I would say you spend about 15 to 45 minutes in the app daily and in return, you get from 7 to 707 coins for every successful plant. In most cases i tend to get 17 coins after 4 days of ‘watering’, which nets out to be $1.20 per month.

Again, it is not going to change your life but to get free dough during your break time (I say (Nike) – just do it.)

And if this tickles the cockles of your heart, I’ll save a post on other streams of investing in separate post (NOTE: it is not financial advice so consider that as additional info for your own consideration).

If you cannot grow a physical plant, do a virtual money tree instead 🙂

So there you have it – 3 reasons why you should add Shopee to your selection of (miles) weapon.

Now if this helps you in any way, and you have not used Shopee before, get $10 off my referral code here using your mobile phone. T&C applies.

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