Actually I've personally benefited from endowment plans. In insurance, people rarely share their benefits publicly because it invites gossip, but I am doing that so that others who have not benefited know how it can help. So I have an endowment plan with flexible withdrawal allowance (or cashback, coupons, whatever you call these). I started the plan when I was in NS and it helped me on two occassions - first when I have exhausted all my savings after NS and uni, and I couldn't find work when I graduated in late 2009. Secondly, the plan helped me again when I changed jobs late on, as there was cashflow issues. I'm not a very disciplined saver, but having this endowment plan has helped me to set aside money to save when I needed it the most - I don't have to borrow from family or friends, or incur interest getting personal loans from banks. And as for retirement planning, you may want to ask how much you want for retirement. If you think less than $1,000/month is sufficient, there's already CPF LIFE in place. Just be sure that you're hitting the Full Retirement Sum when the time comes (no Basic Retirement, Full Retirement is needed). Though I must emphasise $1,000/monthly is hardly enough these days. Otherwise, endowment plans will help you set money aside for later use - can have one of these three types: 1) Provide a lump sum payment at certain age (Traditional Endowment Plans) 2) Provide regular payouts after a certain age (Annuities) 3) Provide flexibility for withdrawals (Whole Life Endowment Plans - these products are relatively new in the market, e.g. PruWealth) Can choose which one you like and how much to put in base on what you need.