Friday, November 13, 2009

What can one do with RM50?

Lots of things:

  1. Get a Baskin Robbins quart
  2. Buy an ok pair of shoes
  3. Eat 1 kg of crabs cooked in sweet chili sauce
  4. Watch a movie in Gold Class
  5. Buy a SuhWEET hairband from Diva to wear with my pretty dress to an upcoming dinner
  6. Donate to charity
  7. Buy the 'Red Prophet' by Orson Scott Card (which is UNAVAILABLE in every bookstore in KL)
  8. Buy an AirAsia ticket ....somewhere, anywhere.....
  9. Buy a tank of petrol
  10. Pay for my Credit Card Annual Service Fee to Bank Negara....
So, I currently have credit cards from ummmm 2 international banks and 2 local establishments. So I have like a total of 9 credit cards....yikes, almost as bad as that government servant who reportedly had 10 right?

I only carry 5 around with me - god knows why I need so many....but maybe cos they give different offers/privileges at different establishments.....I can never remember which card gives me discounts where so I basically just ask the waiter/cashier and then pay with the card that is applicable.

But with the upcoming RM50 Service Fee, I shall be cancelling all but one - now the banks are ALL asking the big ole question - what to give my cardholder so they will keep my card???

Well, I'll tell you what I want:

  1. Discounts that are relevant to me - don't give me gifts or purchase with purcase, I want the good old monetary discount!
  2. The widest possible portfolio of merchants - I don't mean range - I mean portfolio as in, if I'm interested in shoes - give me the longest list of shoe merchants I can get discounts at.
  3. The best possible discounts - don't give me the measly 5% - if I can afford to buy a Jimmy Choo, I don't need no 5%! (WHY DO MERCHANTS NOT UNDERSTAND THAT????) If you give me a 25% discount minimum, I might think again about buying something I don't need! (Don't worry, I'm not a shopaholic! I'm a discountaholic! Can I start a group?)
  4. Ease of payment - over the internet, over the phone, without extra costs - better still if I can set up a monthly instruction to pay the statement amount automatically unless otherwise instructed. BETTER STILL - the Bank will call/sms me to tell me this is my amount for the month - do I wanna pay or not. So that reduces the scariness people feel about paying their credit card bill blindly cos you knowlah, if there is a wrong transaction in there and the money's gone to the bank, it could be quite hard to get it back!
  5. This next one - I've been talking about for some time for Malaysia but now the banks are starting to do - paying with points. Though again, I'd like that the points are not like 180 = RM1. Which means I am literally paying RM180 (from past transactions) to pay RM1 in my current transaction (I guess this is when you get rewarded 1 Bonus Point for every Ringgit you spendlah). I know the points are from the Bank's income but still man - can we maybe say like 50 points for RM10????? I'm on the side of the consumer here! I also love it where I can also pay a portion of my bill with points - it's like getting a discount right there.
  6. Customer Analytics and Differentiation in offers. Nowadays all the banks give the same offers - dining, slimming, exercise machines, hotels in god knows where....where is the GOOD Stuff???? The credit card I stick with should perform Accurate, Timely and Comprehensive Customer Analytics and find out what makes me tick. And give me benefits in those arenas. They could also call me up/email me once in a while just to say - Hey, what kind of discount would you like? Hey, I wanna give you a gift for your patronage - what would you like? Hey, here's free 3 days 2 nights on us at the Four Seasons Langkawi cos GOD KNOWS I never win any contests!!!!!!!!!!!! At least I know I'm a name and a face to them instead of just a Customer Number.

Now I'm stuck between choosing HSBC and EON Bank. Which one will emerge the winner??? HSBC doesn't really do a lot of fun stuff - I know their customer demographics are probably the older set and the RICHER set but that doesn't mean they can't cater to people like me right??? I mean I have the potential to become OLDER and RICHER - I AM their target market (albeit 15 years from now!!!) They should catch me now!!!!

And for those of you asking - EON? As in the Car Financier? As in E-O-N???? Well, yeah! EON Bank! They have a pretty wide range of discounts and their MATTA credit card gives lots of travel opportunities.....Aiya, so difficult - I would say this - HSBC should modernise their package and start looking at the young and stable and potentially old and rich....cos baby - I'd love to take you home!!!!!!!

1 comment:

Mark said...

Good blog which raises some interesting questions regarding fees on credit cards and an observation on the industry in Asia - in the UK we expect to have an annual charge for a credit card. Or at least we used to. I think that this is a good thing. What is the point for the credit card companies to have customers with numerous credit cards. Just think of all the money and resources wasted sending out statements for zero balances. If a charge was levied - surely consumers like you, would make a decision what card to keep and what to close. If he whole industry did this then costs would be reduced in only servicing active customers so better offers/interest rates could be applied. We would also have the side effect of customers having less temptation to overspend and get in debt. Just my two cents!