Our CardUp Review - What Is It? & Is It Worth It?

When you search for a credit card, one of the main factors you’re probably looking for is the rewards offerings. Some credit cards are very generous with the points or miles you can earn through making everyday purchases. What’s frustrating, then, is when you want to pay for something on your credit card to earn points, but the service you’re paying for doesn’t allow for credit card payment. 

Luckily, it’s 2020, a time when there is a solution to almost every problem out there. When it comes to debit-only payments, there’s a service that can allow you to pay using your credit card – and it’s called CardUp. 

What is CardUp?

Credit: CardUp https://www.cardup.co/

CardUp Singapore enables you to make virtually every single one of your purchases with a credit card, even those that typically don’t accept credit card payment. It does this by making the payments on your behalf using another payment form, while you pay by credit card directly to CardUp. This way, you can still benefit from earning points to go towards your rewards programme without having to miss out for no good reason.

Acting as a sort of middleman between you and your vendor, CardUp will first receive your credit card payment, before sending that same payment on to your vendor by debit. If you’re paying big expenses using your credit card, you could really benefit from going through CardUp to ensure you’re able to receive that big batch of rewards points from your purchase. 

You can automate your payments to CardUp to save time and make sure you’re not forgetting about important transactions. From a business perspective, using CardUp also allows you to pay by credit and hold onto your cash for longer, should you be looking to optimise your working capital. 

CardUp: The Early Days

A Singapore-based company, Cardup was founded in 2016 by Nicki Ramsey, and received US$1.7 million in funding from Sequoia India and Seedplus in 2018. The service became popular very quickly because it offered a range of financial solutions, from letting users set up recurring credit card payments for rent, insurance, taxes and more, to allowing businesses to pay taxes, suppliers and payroll with credit. 

Credit: CardUp https://www.cardup.co/

Two years on from its initial startup funding, CardUp Singapore is now used for hundreds of millions in payment, according to information from the website. 

How CardUp Works 

To use CardUp, you need to be a registered user for the service. If you have never used it before, click the “Sign Up” tab on the top right-hand corner of the website. You will then need to enter an email address and password to register. You will also need to select whether you want a personal or business account. 
Next, you will move onto a page where you’re prompted to complete your profile or schedule your first payment.
 

 
Credit: CardUp https://app.cardup.co/dashboard

You will be asked to verify your phone number before you schedule your first payment and complete your profile, so make sure you have an accessible phone number to hand. 

Credit: CardUp https://app.cardup.co/dashboard

If you have SingPass, you can click to autofill your personal information and sign up straightaway. If not, you can complete your profile manually. You only need to enter your full name and your date of birth, so it’s a quick job.

Credit: CardUp https://app.cardup.co/dashboard

When your profile is complete, you can start scheduling payments. Click the “Schedule your first payment” box, which will take you onto a page that allows you to select the type of payment you wish to schedule. You can choose between Rent, Rental Deposit, Education, Condo & MCST Fees, Insurance, Taxes & Stamp Duty, Electricity, Season Parking, Car Loans, and Miscellaneous Payments. 

Make sure you have confirmed your email address before you schedule payments, or the website won’t let you proceed any further. You can click “get confirmation email” below the table of options if you haven’t already received one. 

Credit: CardUp https://app.cardup.co/dashboard

For the purposes of this example, we selected “Rent” as our payment choice. This brings up a drop-down option for you to select your recipient, which includes a couple of CardUp Preferred Recipients.

You can then fill out the recipient’s details and click “next” on the bottom right-hand side of the screen. 

You will move onto a page where you can select the value of the payment you want to schedule and confirm. You can also choose to schedule these payments to be taken straight from your credit account on a regular basis if this is convenient for you. 

On the unlikely chance that CardUp can’t support your payment, a representative of the service will get in touch within one working day to let you know.

Cardup Payments: A Detailed Look

There are 10 different means of payment that you can choose to use CardUp for: Rent, Rental Deposit, Education, Condo & MCST Fees, Insurance, Taxes & Stamp Duty, Electricity, Season Parking, Car Loans and Miscellaneous. 

Credit: CardUp https://app.cardup.co/dashboard

Rent 

Rent allows you to schedule your rent payments in advance. When scheduling a rent payment, you need to select your landlord and fill in their details, including their name and address. You will also need to fill out the recipient account information. 

Rental Deposit

Rental deposit lets you pay a one-off deposit to secure a property for rent. To do this, you will need to follow the same process as for Rent, filling out your landlord’s details and details of the recipient account. 

Education

When using CardUp for paying university or other education-related fees, you can select your school from the list of CardUp Preferred Recipients, or add your own. Then you need to fill out your recipient’s details, and upload a document of payment advice, such as an invoice, which helps CardUp validate the bank’s details. 

Condo & MCST Fees

Condo & MCST Fees lets you schedule automatic MSCT payments by credit. Just select your MCST number or add a new condo, then upload the recipient’s details and account details. You will also need to upload a document, such as an invoice, as proof of your transaction. 

Insurance 

If you have monthly insurance, you can schedule payments using your credit card through CardUp. Select the insurance provider from CardUp’s list of Preferred Recipients or add a new insurance company and fill out the required details. 

Taxes and Stamp Duty

Taxes and Stamp Duty allows you to pay your taxes by credit card. You can choose between income tax and property tax. Stamp Duty is a relatively new option that has been added to CardUp this year. 

Electricity 

Electricity is a payment option that has only just been made available to CardUp. To pay your electricity bills by credit, select your recipient and fill out the appropriate details. 

Season Parking

If you pay monthly for season parking, you can pay for your subscription on CardUp. You can add the details of the appropriate company and schedule one-time or regular payments by credit card. 

Car Loans

Even paying for a loaned car is an option on CardUp. You can choose from CardUp’s Preferred Recipients or add in the details of your own preferred bank. 

Miscellaneous Payments

Miscellaneous Payments covers two options: Helper Salary or Other. Presumably, this option is there to support any other payments that can usually not be made with a credit card. It’s more than likely that CardUp would get back to you pretty fast if you requested to schedule a payment that they didn’t support. 

Pros & Cons of Using CardUp

The benefits of using CardUp are fairly self-explanatory. By scheduling your payments with CardUp, you can:

  • Earn more points and enjoy credit card rewards, just by shifting big payments to your credit card. This is the reason why most people choose to use CardUp.
  • Schedule recurring transactions, so you don’t need to spend time making the same payment every month, or worry about missing a payment. If you want a simple way to pay rent or subscription fees, CardUp offers a good platform for doing so. 
  • Pay for almost everything that is traditionally debit-only, from rent and education to electricity and car loans. 
  • Use a secure, legitimate middleman for your transactions, knowing that your money will safely reach the right destination. 
  • Make payments through CardUp using any major credit card issued in Singapore, including HSBC, American Express and Citibank. 

Credit: CardUp https://www.cardup.co/

  • Handle payments entirely from your end. Your vendor, or the recipient of your transaction, does not need to sign up to CardUp to receive payments from you. Providing you know their payment details, you can fill them out yourself and the funds will be transferred to them by CardUp.
  • Earn miles through CardUp transactions. If your credit card rewards you with miles per $1 spent, you can easily earn lots of miles with recurring payments. You can use CardUp’s miles calculator, pictured below, to work out how many miles you can earn based on your monthly CardUp payments.

Credit: CardUp https://www.cardup.co/rewards

Of course, the cons of using CardUp are less obvious on surface level. Some of the things to be aware of are:

  • There is a 2.6% processing fee that applies for each transaction. This is essentially how CardUp makes money from the service it provides. If you are using the service for multiple transactions, this fee can quickly start to add up. 
  • Any payment lower than $130 will receive a minimum CardUp fee of $3.40. Note that $3.40 is 2.6% of $130, so if you make a payment lower than that, you will still receive the fixed fee of 2.6%. 
  • There are dangers to increasing your credit card usage. Make sure you’re aware of your credit card’s limits before you start making big payments that could affect your credit card. Also, it goes without saying that you should only use your credit card to make payments that you can afford to repay. 
  • Processing time for payments takes a minimum of 3 days, so it’s best to set your payments up well in advance to avoid frustration. 
  • If you want to make an urgent, next-day payment, there will be an additional 0.3% fee on top of the standard fee of 2.6% on the transaction. Promo code discounts also won’t be applicable, and you can’t make a payment of more than $15,000. 
  • CardUp won’t offer you a refund for any payment. This is to be expected, but it may prove annoying if you have made a payment mistake, for example. CardUp simply acts as the middleman between you and the vendor, and you will need to communicate directly with the recipient in question if you want a refund. This can either be paid back through CardUp or directly into your bank account.  

Current CardUp Promotions 2020 

At the moment, CardUp is offering a slightly lower processing fee on any transaction that is made before 30 June 2020. If you use the CardUp promo code GET225 before confirming your transaction, you can receive a 2.25% transaction fee instead of one at 2.6%. This is valid only for payments that exceed $130. 

Credit: CardUp https://carduphelp.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/360041215113-2-25-Promo-General-FAQs

CardUp is also offering a discounted fee of 1.9% (originally 2.6%) for any rent payments until June 30. You just need to enter the CardUp promo code SAVERENT19 before finalising the transaction. You can apply this promo code to existing rent payments as well as new ones; just edit your existing payment and add SAVERENT19 into the promo code box. 

Summary

CardUp Singapore is unquestionably convenient, and it’s easy to see why the service has received such a warm welcome by credit cardholders in Singapore. Paying your big payments by credit card can help you to get far more out of your credit card rewards programme, while you continue to pay what you would normally pay by debit (with the exception of CardUp’s 2.6% processing fee). Providing you can safely repay your credit card payments, signing up to CardUp may be one of the most advantageous things you do this year.