If you’re thinking of taking out a personal loan to go on holiday, please close that browser window and slowly step away from the computer. Personal loans are not meant to be a quick-fix for your cashflow issues and should never be used to pay for anything that isn’t an emergency or necessity.
However, if you are facing something that counts as an emergency — say, a medical emergency, or an urgent home repair, and really don’t have the cash for it, a personal loan can be a lower-interest alternative to credit card debt.
So, let’s check out the Citi Quick Cash Personal Loan to see what it entails, and what factors you need to consider, including interest rates, repayments and so on.
By the way, this is just a review, not an advert, so you should always compare personal loans across the various banks such as the popular DBS and POSB personal loan, OCBC personal loan, and UOB personal loan before deciding which one to sign up for.
Citibank personal loan application criteria
Citi Quick Cash is a bit different from your run-of-the-mill personal loan. It is meant for people who have a Citi Credit Card or Citi Ready Credit account and who have not used up all the money within their credit limit. Citi Quick Cash lets them convert this available credit limit into cash, at more favourable interest rates.
If you don’t already have a Citi Credit Card or Citibank Ready Credit, you will have to first get one or the other before you can access Citi Quick Cash.
In addition, you need to satisfy the following annual income requirements to qualify for Quick Cash:
- Singapore Citizens and PRs: $30,000
- Foreigners: $42,000
Citi personal loan application & approval time
Before you apply, you can check your potential monthly repayments on the Citi Quick Cash Loan website. On the loan calculator, you can also select the reason for which you’re borrowing the money. (If you selected “branded luxury” or “vacation”, please do yourself a favour and forget about taking out the loan.)
You can also use the MoneySmart personal loan comparison page to get a quotation and at the same time compare with other banks.
To apply for Quick Cash, existing Citibank customers can go through the Citibank mobile app.
For non-Citibank cardholders, you need to first sign up for a credit card. If that’s the case, I suggest you apply for your card on MoneySmart to take advantage of our exclusive promotions.
Existing Citi Credit Card holders and Ready Credit Account Holders do not need to furnish any documents.
For new-to-Citibank customers applying for a credit card or Ready Credit, you can apply online with the following documents:
- NRIC or Passport
- Past 12 months’ CPF statement submitted via CPF website OR latest Income Tax Notice of Assessment and latest computerised payslip (for salaried employees and all foreigners)
- Last two years’ Income Tax Notice of Assessment and last three months’ bank statements (for self-employed)
- Employment Pass (foreigners only)
For existing Citibank customers submitting an application through the Citibank mobile app, approval is instant.
For new-to-Citibank customers, approval can take three to five working days.
Citibank QuickCash personal loan interest rate (2022)
Citibank does not publish their interest rates transparently on their site, which is a major turn off.
You can only see the actual interest rate you’ll be getting when you apply for the loan.
The website does say that rates go as low as 3.45per cent per annum, which works out to an Effective Interest Rate (EIR) of 6.5 per cent. But these lowest interest rates are usually reserved for richer customers, such as those with an annual income of at least $120,000.
Citibank personal loan vs DBS, POSB, OCBC, UOB personal loan interest rates
For the purposes of comparing the Citibank loan with those from the three local banks, let’s use the hypothetical example of someone who’s taking out a $10,000 loan, to be repaid over three years.
Assuming this person is a Singaporean or PR who is earning $2,500 per month, here’s what the interest rates could look like:
|Interest rate||EIR||Monthly installment||Total amount payable|
|Citibank||3.45 per cent||6.5 per cent||$307||$11,035|
|DBS/POSB||3.88 per cent||7.9 per cent||$310||$11,164|
|OCBC||5.43 per cent||11.47 per cent||$323||$11,629|
|UOB||3.4 per cent||6.42 per cent||$306||$11,020|
As you can see, in this particular example, Citi Quick Cash is actually quite competitive compared to the three local banks, with only UOB being verrrry slightly cheaper.
Citibank Quick Cash personal loan promotions
In the spirit of sharing lobangs, here are the ongoing Citibank promotions to look out for:
- MoneySmart promotion: New Quick Cash loan customers get $150 + $400 cash via PayNow when they apply for Citi Quick Cash through MoneySmart. Valid till April 30, 2022.
- Citibank mobile app promotion: Get $50, $150 or $450 GrabFood vouchers. Valid till May 31, 2022.
Be cautious with personal loans
In spite of what banks’ marketing slogans might lead you to believe, personal loans are NOT a convenient bandaid to all your money woes, making it possible to afford all the holidays and shopping sprees you desire.
In fact, personal loans are best avoided unless you absolutely need to spend that money and your only other option is falling into credit card debt. Here are some examples of needs: Emergency medical treatment, your kid/parent/pet falling ill, your window or front door being broken, or your fridge breaking down.
For anything else that’s less urgent or less necessary, give yourself time to save up rather than get into debt over it.
This article was first published in MoneySmart.