Security Bank Cash Back Credit Card: Cash Backs are Automatic and Simple

 The best credit card is one that has the lowest annual fees and gives the most rewards for the kind of spending you do. For me, that’s the cash back.


Really quickly, a cashback is a kind of discount. For credit cards, the cashback amount is subtracted from the total amount due, so before any payment is made, the amount is already less. This is different from a traditional rebate where you get money after cash out. Usually, cashback credit cards give cashbacks using a %’s on a particular spending category. My Security Bank Mastercard gives the following cashback:

  • Groceries: 5%
  • Gas 4%
  • Utilities 3%
  • Dining 2%
  • Shopping: 1%

This is capped at 12% annually and has some restrictions. For example, only transactions with printed card slips are subject to the cashback, so online payments to telco’s do not earn cashback. It has an  annual membership fee of ₱3,000, and interest of 2% per month.


There are many credit cards, so this post will look at two examples.

UnionBank Cash back: This is in the same class as my Security Bank Cashback, except it uses a simpler rule: it’s just 1% on all categories. Annual fee is ₱3,000 per year, and its interest fee is 1.96%.

Citibank Rewards: The basic rewards card earns 1 point for every ₱30, and 15 points is equivalent to ₱1 that you can spend on certain merchants like Apple or Ray ban. To make this apples-to-apples, we find the percent to credit card spend that this is equivalent to, which we get from ₱1 / ₱30 / 15 points, and this is equal to 0.22%. For some merchants and under some promos, this can get as high as 0.66%. The annual fee is ₱2,500, and monthly interest rate is 3.5%.


The Security Bank cash back works the best for me because most of my expenses are on groceries (I spend around ₱2,000 more on groceries than I do on my electricity-water-internet utilities). As a result, I average around 2.4% cashback-to-total credit card spend. In my case, this card beats both the UnionBank and Citibank cards I have as comparison. I find that while this card has categories, except for one big exclusion criteria (see the Ang Hindi Okay part), it’s fairly easy to understand. Do not estimate how difficult it is to keep track and use rewards points of other credit cards. Cash backs are simple, because they are applied automatically.

For the most part, Security Bank is a straightforward bank to deal with as a credit card provider. Lines are usually available, and I have done everything from requesting for a lower limit, asking for a replacement card, and questioning a few charges. Interest fees for the most part, are a non-issue for me because I really make sure NOT to have to pay interest, but do consider this for you own situation. Security Bank’s interest fees are competitive with the market.


My biggest issue is the exclusion of non-card slip transactions, in other words all online transactions, from the cash back, because this is the best way to pay my telco fees. Other issues include that they never waive your annual fee, and that they don’t have as many promos and installment options as more popular cards.


■■□□ The best for me against everything out there.

I have a love-hate relationship with credit cards, but I am mainly happy with this credit card. Doing research, I was extremely turned off by how hard it was to find out how to spend the points of one credit card. Cash backs are automatic and simple. But the biggest thing that detracts from this credit card is how it excludes online purchases from cash back.

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