Advice on which credit cards and frequent flyer program is best if moving to Malaysia?

Hello. We are Australians moving to Malaysia for work for 4 years. I would appreciate advice with regards to which Credit Card would be best to use during this period keeping in mind international currency transfer costs (we are paid in AUD). We would like to accumulate points that we can use for lounge access, flights and upgrades for travel during that time noting flights will not just be back to Aus (hopefully!) Probably mainly flying MAS and my partner is a member of Qantas Club. I was thinking maybe AMEX Platinum?
Thank you. I’m not sure where to start!

I’m not sure if you can apply for Malaysia credit cards based on the type of work permit/visa arrangements you have, but if not, any Australian card with no foreign transaction fees should be your top priority. There is no point earning points when you are having to pay 2-3% for the privilege of paying with an overseas card.

As for frequent flyer programs, Malaysian airlines can be credited to Qantas depending on the flight class you are booked in. If you aren’t planning to stay in Malaysia long term and you aren’t really flying enough to accumulate status with either, I would just keep building up my Qantas points balance.


You can’t double dip the no international conversion/transaction fee and good reward point earning rate in one card. But to balance out I think (not sure if I can nominate one particular card here) Coles Mastercard is working fine on both ends. 0 international transaction fee (not sure if the rate is good or not though) and Flybuys rewards for Coles shopping when home (or points can be converted to Velocity under VA or Krisflyer under Singapore Airline). Really up to you but this is the best card I am shopping around with similar requirement (not particularly bonding to Malaysia).

Hope it hepls.