Poll: Women hold more cards

THE Singapore woman holds more credit cards than the Singapore man. 

She’s probably got five to his three, according to a recent Citibank survey. 

There are 200,000 women in Singapore who earn enough – at least S$30,000 (RM65,400) a year – to qualify for a credit card, said market research firm AC Nielsen. 

Citibank’s business director of credit payment products Yuen Kum Fai said: “They are more financially independent now and have a higher purchasing power than before.” 

So women spend a lot. And they use their credit cards a lot. 

Patricia Chui, 48, managing director of Bentley Porter Novelli Communications, a public relations consultancy, puts her eight cards to good use. 

She said: “I never carry cash. The cards save me the hassle of withdrawing money from ATMs.” 

And Chui, who said she racks up a five-figure bill each month, agrees: “All the cards have different rewards and perks. I use the cards for the different services, restaurant discounts and gifts.” 

To make sure the women keep using their cards, issuers apply a range of temptations. 

Citibank offers no fewer than seven cards, including ones linked to mobile phone company M1, and the department store Tangs. Some of its cards rack up frequent flyer points on Cathay Pacific, Northwest Airlines and Singapore Airlines. 

HSBC also has seven, which included Care For Nature – half the membership fee goes to a Care-For-Nature trust fund – and NTUC Income Visa, which comes with free travel insurance. 

UOB offers about a dozen, including Manchester United UOB Visa for fans of the famous football club, UOB Golf Visa Card for golfers, and UOB Big Hearts Little Ones MasterCard, which gives the Children’s Charities Association a small percentage of what the user spends. 

American Express tailors its temptations to its customers’ spending. Public affairs director Sanjit Mittra said it offers golfers discounts on accessories, and those who enjoy eating a dining programme with a 50% discount. – The Straits Times/Asia News Network  

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