For most people, the Maybank SaveUp account is attractive *only* if you plan to take up a new loan from Maybank. Even then, the highest bonus interest tier will only be awarded for the first 12 months.
[What I like]
• Effective interest rate of 3% p.a. at the highest bonus tier
• Bonus interest based on number of qualifying products and not savings balance
• No mandatory requirements for bonus interest
[What I don't like]
• Highest tier of bonus interest is only awarded for 12 months
• Requirements for investment and insurance categories don't make sense
The Maybank SaveUp account is Maybank’s version of a high-interest rate savings account. In terms of construct, it most closely resembles the DBS Multiplier account - the more you bank with Maybank across different product categories, the more bonus interest you earn.
Bonus interest is awarded with just one qualifying product category, which can easily be achieved. But to get an attractive interest rate, you’ll need to meet the criteria for three categories (out of a total of five). Meeting this third category is not as easy, which puts the Maybank SaveUp account out of consideration for most people.
[Who this account is for]
If you are planning to take up either a home loan or car loan from Maybank, the Maybank SaveUp account allows you to earn slightly higher interest at a rate of 3% p.a. on your savings, compared to 2.0-2.5% at most other banks with a similar set of conditions.
[Who this account isn't for]
Without a loan from Maybank, the bonus interest that most people can expect to earn falls to just 1.1% p.a.. Technically, there are other categories that you can look at - namely, Investment and Insurance - but the steep criteria for them effectively puts them out of reach for most people. If you are not looking for a loan, you should consider other banks.
[Why I like this account]
The entry level conditions for earning bonus interest are easy to meet. You only need to credit your salary or spend $300 on GIRO transactions each month, and spend another $500 on an eligible Maybank credit card to meet the requirements for en effective interest rate of 1.4% p.a.
The usual exclusions on what constitutes eligible credit card spend apply - i.e. as with all other banks, AXS payments and Grab Pay top-ups won’t count. Also, not everyone will like the credit card minimum spend requirement. But overall the basic requirements are no more onerous that the requirements of other banks.
If you are planning to take up a home or car loan with Maybank, then opening up a SaveUp account becomes a no-brainer. Based on the details listed on Maybank’s website, this needs to be a new loan with the bank, so it appears that existing loan holders are unfortunately out of luck.
[Flaws and possible dealbreakers]
The biggest flaw is that bonus interest for taking up a loan with Maybank is only awarded for the first 12 months, even if the actual loan repayment period is longer than that (which it likely will be). Unless Maybank changes the programme’s rules, this means that you should only plan to open a SaveUp account for up to 12 months.
There are other categories besides Loans that you could look at, but the steep requirements for the Investment ($30k in structured deposits or $25k in cash investments) and Insurance ($5k in annual premiums) categories effectively put them out of reach for most people.