SBI Card Launches “PRIME” Credit Card – Review

By | June 14, 2017

SBICard recently launched a new credit card and is positioned a bit below its premium credit card SBI Elite but infact has better features, the most important of which is Priority Pass benefit with 4 Free Visits (international only). It comes with a lot of lifestyle benefits, available on both MasterCard World & Visa Signature variants and is a contact-less card.

  • Joining/Renewal Fee: Rs.2,999+Tax (Renewal Fee Waived on 3 Lakh spend)
  • Welcome e-gift Voucher: Rs. 3,000

SBI Card Prime Features and Benefits – Review

#1 Welcome Gift – SBI Card Prime

Welcome e-gift Voucher worth โ‚น 3,000 from any of the following brands: Bata/Hush Puppies, Marks and Spencer, Pantaloons, Shoppers Stop and Yatra.

  • Gift Voucher code will be sent to your registered mobile number within 15 days of request
  • For Bata/ Hush Puppies, Marks and Spencer, Pantaloons, Shoppers Stop, you can redeem your e-Gift Voucher by showing the code at the respective brand store
  • For Yatra, you can redeem the code online at the time of purchase

I would prefer “Pantaloons” voucher anytime or “Yatra” if there is any upcoming travel.

#2 Reward Points

  • 20 RP per Rs.100 spent: Standing instructions of Utility Bills payments (5% Value)
  • 20 RP per Rs.100 spent: All spends on your birthday (5% Value)
  • 15 RP per Rs.100 spent: BigBasket, Reliance Fresh, Reliance Smart, Reliance Footprint, Reliance Trends and Sahakari Bhandar stores (3.75% Value)
  • 10 RP per Rs.100 spent: Dining, Groceries, Departmental stores and Movies (2.5% Value)
  • All other spends: 2 RP per Rs.100 (0.50% Value)
  • 1 Reward Point Value – Rs.0.25 (can be adjusted as statement credit)

Lots of slabs, but the good one i see is first two with 5% value with no upper cap (as i believe). Also you get decent value on departmental store spends. This should simply replace your Standard Chartered Manhattan credit card as SBI Card Prime is now one of the best credit card for families with Groceries & Departmental store spend benefits.

The very important point to note is that you can adjust these reward points for statement credit as you do with Elite card.

#3 Milestone Benefits

  • Spend Rs.50,000: Get Rs.1,000 Pizza Hut e-Voucher (every calendar quarter)
  • Spend Rs.5 Lakhs: Get Rs.7000 worth Yatra/Pantaloons Voucher.

#4 Airport Lounge Access

  • International: 4 complimentary visits per year to International Priority Pass Lounges, outside India (max. 2 visits per quarter)
  • Domestic: 8 complimentary visits per year to Domestic VISA/Mastercard Lounges in India (max. 2 visits per quarter)
  • Both for Primary Cardholders only

All banks are now pushing Priority pass to be used only for Intl visits. This is because Bank might need to pay a higher amount from their pocket for your Priority Pass visits, wherein Mastercard/Visa maynot demand a higher amount for their lounge access as its a part of their core benefit.

By the way, do you know that SBI Elite card now has 6 free Priority pass visits from July 1st 2017? ๐Ÿ™‚

#5 Club Vistara Membership

  • Enjoy Complimentary Club Vistara Silver membership
  • Get 1 complimentaryย Lounge Access Voucher and 1 Upgrade Voucher
  • Earn 9 Club Vistara Points for every โ‚น 100 spent on Vistara flights

Good move. Upgrade voucher gives a lot of value.

Other Features:

  • Enjoy complimentary Trident Privilege Red Tier Membership & other benefits linked to it.
  • 4 complimentary rounds on Green Fees

SBI CARD PRIME

How to get the best value out of SBI PRIME Credit Card

Its a power packed credit card with a lot of features stuffed inside. From milestone benefit to lounge access, SBI Card prime has everything you need under single roof and that too with a renewal fee waiver of just 3L spend which is very much acceptable. So how can you maximize the value? Lets consider a spend of 5 Lakhs in a year

  • Spend on categories with 5% value as mentioned above, You save -> Rs. 25,000 as Reward points
  • You get ->Rs.4,000 worth pizza Hut vouchers (provided quarterly spends are reached)
  • You get ->Rs.7,000 worth yartra/Pantaloons voucher (5L Spend)
  • Total Savings: Rs.36,000 on 5L spend which is ~7% Reward Rate

Ofcourse, you can’t always spend on 5% value categories, but yes, if not 7% you can get value as good as at-least 3~5% considering the milestone benefit and spends being spread out across other categories. Now the direct competitor is HDFC Regalia with 1.6% Reward Rate, that too only with limited redemption options.

  • Cardexpert Rating: 4.5/5

The time has come to get rid of the monopoly in the market (HDFC) as SBI Card prime will serve as an easy replacement for the HDFC Regalia Credit Card in every aspect. Its time for HDFC to realize that their endless series of devaluations is no longer going to help them.

Also, considering HDFC’s poor customer care experience, SBI would serve the needs far way better. Just that HDFC partner offers are good for now, but its just a matter of time and i believe SBI will top the premium credit card market in coming Years.

Great move SBICards! Lets welcome SBI Card Prime with Warm Hands ๐Ÿ˜€

I’m sure that this willย adversely affect the spends on HDFC Regalia, what do you think? Feel free to share your thoughts in comments below.

86 thoughts on “SBI Card Launches “PRIME” Credit Card – Review

  1. Shalabh Agarwal

    Looks absolutely brilliant move from SBI – I had been HDFC Premium Diner’s card holder for past 8-10 months, and what I am experiencing right now is due to the mandamus of payments bank based market sharing, more share for the digital transactions post demonetization, post mergers of plethora of mammoth banks, SBI is playing big in the market. I believe in 10-15 years down the line Credit cards are obsolete if not innovated, and in the time to come for them to exists, the demand has to be created, it is still quite prime to keep the elite cards in the wallet, just for the show off may be, but diversifying the segments like (SBI prime) will give others to think upon their strategy rather than devaluations. The inequality is rising & middle income groups are increasing and demand has to be met by the desires/needs. HDFC diner’s premium is all I am using for all my spends, & with recent caps to the rewards points, I primarily kept this card for the Lounge access. However, I am now going to apply for the SBI Prime/Elite card for sure. Which one do you recommend?

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Prime is good to go if your spends are in accelerated reward slab with total spends around ~5L,
      (most HDFC regalia, YES Preferred and other premium card holders gonna love this)

      Or, if you spend north of 10L,
      then Elite is good, as it has higher PP visits and BMS offers.

      Reply
      1. Shalabh Agarwal

        Well even my heart is beating for Prime – it does looks amazing. How long it took for you to get this card? And any salary prerequisites? Recently I have applied for the HSBC card (non -account holder) too, which is yet to arrive just because I needed an additional support credit card except Diners’ for the simple reason it is not used at some places/websites. However, I am still going to apply for this one. I am sitting pretty decent with my CIBIL score when I checked in March, i.e. 880+ something & I guess it should be approved if applied. I probably would end up spending 4-5 lakhs on the normal basis then 10L. Are they giving it in MC variant as well? Diner’s I will keep it for Domestic lounges – looking for some card in Travel section as well – hope something will come up soon.

        Reply
        1. Siddharth Post author

          Its a very fresh card, SBI don’t demand any high salary even for ELite card.
          So this should be easy to get for someone with even ~30k salary range.

          Yes, you can get Mastercard variant. Make sure to mention it while applying.

          Reply
          1. Shalabh Agarwal

            Alright ! Thanks so much. Keep up the good work. Regular to the site to know about the fantasies in the credit card world. One of the best source for the info. ๐Ÿ™‚ And regular updates are USPs to keep up with the ever changing world.

            However, on that note, How do you apply for the same? Any contact/toll free number? I am afraid if I try calling anyone to the customer care, they even won’t be knowing about it. Also, I am not very confident if this one is loaded on their website yet.

          2. Siddharth Post author

            Thanks for the kind words.
            Pls visit branch. That’s best way to apply for SBI cards AFAIK.

          3. Siddharth Post author

            More acceptance for lounge access.

      2. AS

        BMS weekend blockbuster available on this card if you get visa signature one. Not as good as Elite one, but still not bad.

        Reply
        1. Swaraj

          kindly elaborate how BMS offer can be availed in the PRIME card .
          Actually SBI is pushing me really hard to shift to their ELITE or PRIME card … The BMS offer attracted me for the ELITE one , but today i received a call for their PRIME variant which i think is good .

          Reply
  2. Ganesh

    Great news Sid! Many thanks for your endless efforts!

    Regards
    Ganesh

    Reply
  3. Rahul

    HDFC’s lifetime free scheme will always help keep it ahead in terms of market share. For a person like me, i would rather have a credit card with no strings attached wrt spending limit than a Rs 3000 annual fees hanging like a sword if i dont spend atleast Rs 3 lacs. Just a food for thought.

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      True that. But if that’s the case, SBI will run that promo to all of its SBI customer base and get the numbers in no time ๐Ÿ™‚
      They maybe testing few things. Lets see what’s coming!

      Reply
      1. Shalabh Agarwal

        Well in that case, one should wait for the card to be offer life time free? to accumulate the numbers?

        Reply
        1. Siddharth Post author

          No, it was just a thought. They may or maynot do.

          Reply
  4. Shalabh Agarwal

    Siddharth, the international complimentary visits are they chargeable – brochure marks that 27$ would be charged every time being a visitor? Is it true?

    Also, how good is the Vistara membership with upgrade voucher? Thoughts?

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      4 PP visits are free as mentioned on SBI website itself.
      “4 complimentary visits per year to International Priority Pass Lounges, outside India (max. 2 visits per quarter)”

      Vistara upgrade vouchers are part of Silver Tier and yes it should be easy to use with less complications as they’re a Premium carrier. I may review this in detail in coming months as i get practically exposed to ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply
        1. Shalabh Agarwal

          Also, I tried opening the Prime card brochure & it says that $27 charged on the card? Not sure. If that is free upto four visits. Then it’s cool.

          Reply
  5. Meet Sharma

    Can I get this card with no credit history, but with salary of 40k?

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Well, you got to give a try!
      Hit or Miss! More chances to go through if you’ve some existing relationship with SBI.
      Anyways, this card is also available on FD basis which is highly suggested for your case.

      Reply
      1. Meet Sharma

        I’ll get in touch soon with my friend who happens to be in SBI and have a look at it.

        Reply
      2. AS

        Link please regarding the eligibility for card on basis of fd.

        Reply
        1. Siddharth Post author

          Just Visit branch. 1.25L on Fd should do i think.

          Reply
  6. Rohan M

    And meanwhile HDFC did this
    EasyEMI and e-wallet loading transactions will not accrue Reward points.
    Reward points accrued will be reversed if a retail transaction is converted into SmartEMI.
    Reward points accrued for Insurance transactions will have a maximum cap of 2,000 per transaction.
    I got mail regarding this and I hold regalia first.

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Yes, they updated Infinia page a while back.

      Reply
  7. Ebin Johnson

    Check Elite. They are giving some additional offers. Priority pass is there too + club vistara silver membership + trident privilege membership

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Yes, they’ve added all these features to Elite too.

      Reply
  8. Sunny

    Wow this is brilliant and shocking, never expected SBI to dish out such a card with great benefits

    It definitely trumps HDFC Regalia any day, now I’m really thinking of trying for this.

    Reply
  9. David

    Ok so I got SBI Simply Click and I heard you can hold only one card from SBI at atime, so does it mean I should jump over to PRIME?

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      I recently did it as well, but i heard from phone banking guys that you can anytime change the card if you’re not satisfied with current one/Simplyclick. But approval from internal team is required.

      Reply
    2. Siva

      I have a simply click too which I use a lot – around 40k+ per month average, but all my spends are online. I believe its actually a loss if I switch over to this as the rewards on online spends on simplyclick is best (3.25% for first 2 lakhs and 1.25% post that) and 10X rewards on some partner sites. Note that I use other cards (Amex etc.) for offline and fuel transactions.

      Any thoughts Sidharth?

      Reply
  10. Prashant Gupta

    This card dont seem to be of use for some of us who use sodexo and other food card for grocery purchase. For dining regalia give 3.3% and diners black give 6.6%. But yes its a perfect replacement for sc manhattan and other grocery and departmental store focussed cards. Most of the cards have some or the other movie offer and Paytm also. For retail spend and online purchase this card seems to be useless even for travel bookings.

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Yes, it can no way compete with super premium cards like Diners Black.
      But it sure wins over Regalia (tough to get too) & Yes preferred.

      Infact if i see it right, SBI may come up with upper cap on each category sooner or later!

      Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      I was about to give 5, but then reduced to 4.5 ๐Ÿ™‚
      Any reason why you think it only deserves 4?

      Reply
  11. Alok

    Nicee!

    What could be the deciding factors between this Prime and the Yes Preferred?

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Prime – you can redeem points for cash credit while u can’t on preferred.

      Reply
      1. Manav

        Yes Preferred is LTF, so didnt understand your “cash credit” point.
        With Yes Card, you can use it for travel / hotel / movie.. that might be a fair deal I suppose

        Reply
  12. Majumdar

    Offtopic but breaking news. No RPs on ewallet loading on HDFC CCs wef July 1.

    Regards

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Yes, its there for a while. Will put it in detail shortly.

      Reply
  13. Pranav

    Would you recommend getting this card instead of Regalia? Also how does this compare to Diners Premium?

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Regalia – Yes.
      Diners Premium – depends, as it has 10x and unlimited domestic lounge access.

      Reply
  14. Anirban Roy Chowdhury

    Hi Sid,

    While visiting BB few weeks back , a salesguy persuaded me to get the sbi fbb credit card with a limit of Rs 3.8L. Its tied up with FBB and I hardly buy clothes from fbb. Is there a way I can change that card and get a SBI prime card? Please can you let me know the process. Its not even a month that I got the sbi fbb card. Thanks!

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Just raise a complaint with phone banking stating you’re not happy with FBB card and wish to change.

      Reply
      1. Anirban Roy Chowdhury

        oh..thats it ….Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚ …and hey …really appreciate the prompt response !

        Reply
  15. Prashant Gupta

    Siddharth if u can see how many of us spend mainly on grocery and departmental store max rs. 3-5k but on other spends much more say rs.10k for which u only get 0.5% points. And most of those working in MNC and PSU now days get sodexo and meal cards. I also buy groceries and others using sodexo which give tax benefits which is more useful. I cant justify its usage for a person u does not spend on grocery, reliance stores. Its a perfect mid ranger card which will give tough competition to RBL, Axis and sc bank and most probably trump them becuase of cool lounge access feature.

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      The milestone benefit increases the reward rate on other spends. ๐Ÿ™‚

      But yes, if you deal with lots of sodexo, it may help only a bit.

      Reply
  16. Ebin Johnson

    I go with Sid for the rating. I get Sodexo, but is mainly used for lunch + some cafeteria spends. Some shops accepts it only for food related purchases. Also Like Elite you can exchange your points for statement credit which is really useful. As a new card, at least for an year they won’t devalue it. Hope this justifies the current rating.

    I am using SBI Elite and AMEX Gold for last 3 years. SBI’s customer care is equally as good as the other.

    Reply
  17. Ashwin

    From the website only ELITE cards are eligible for statement credits. Can we have statement credits in case of PRIME also?

    Reply
  18. Gokul

    Does this card provide RP for Utility payments(Insurance, Bill payment etc)

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      This week i guess, you should be able to apply right away!

      Reply
  19. Amandeep singh

    Hi sid,
    Great article as always. M elite card is due for renewal in August if I swap to this card will I get yatra voucher?

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Thank You!
      Yes, you get the welcome bonus as long as you pay the card joining fee.

      Reply
  20. Shobhit Kohli

    Dear Cardholder, we have introduced a few more features on your SBI Platinum Card, which will be applicable w.e.f. 1 Jul ’17. In all future communications from the effective date, your card will be referred to as ‘SBI Card PRIME’. Please note that all the existing features would continue to be applicable till 15 Jul ’17. For more details on the new features, refer to the e-mail sent on your registered e-mail ID on 15th Jun ’17 or visit sbicard website.

    Reply
  21. Shobhit Kohli

    All SBI platinum cards are being converted to SBI Card Prime ๐Ÿ™‚

    Reply
  22. Anil

    HDFC is reducing rewards day by day, no ewallet loading points, Regalis & Diners both are downgraded in comparison to their previous structure
    Amex raising spending threshold for offers & fee reversal getting touher
    Considering that this card is definitely good for 3-4 lacs spenders
    I used SBI Signature for a while till I could manage 5-6 lacs & then I got it downgraded to Simply Save which gives 2.5% on selected categories which is better than Indusind iconia 2%/1.5%, Yes Preferred 2%
    ICICI Rubyx still have better ratio 3.2%/1.6%

    PS : Sid thanks for such nice articles, even I am card freak & the way you put up info is commendable but my comments go under moderation each time & I do not even get notification if that goes live or some posts a reply
    Also post some article on comparison of diff reward options & catalogue
    thanks in advance

    Reply
  23. sundeep thomas

    Hi sid,
    I just got my Simplyclick advantage credit card two months back against a 1lac FD. I want to apply for this PRIME card mainly for lounge access.what is the procedure for getting this card? also would like to know if i ll get the same RP for spendings on amazon?

    Reply
  24. Mahendra

    I sid,

    I am regalia holder. I didn’t get any benifits from the card even I spend 15lacs last year. Mostly on retails and dinning( Travel is not my concern). As I saw this card details on your site, I immedialty applied today morning. As a surprise, bank called me collected documents too today itself.. They require only Aadhar, PAN and one photo(No ITR, no sal slips). I feel this card is definitely better than Regalia for milestone acheivements.

    Thanks for the article. Keep it up.

    Reply
  25. Saravanan R

    This is very good card with lounge access. My Dad holds SBI Platinum Credit Card and he often gets calls from SBI to switch to Elite or Air India Signature Card but i will tell him not to go for it due to high annual fee and no waiver option.
    But this is very good card with lounge access benefits andwith 3lac spend annual fee waiver, it is a must have card. Need to upgrade to it immediately.

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      You should have got upgraded for free if you hold platinum before ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply
  26. Shivi

    Foreign Currency Transaction Fee for All Cards Except SBI Elite is still 3.5%. HDFC Regalia still scores over SBI Prime in that department with 2% markup.

    Reply
  27. Rahul

    I was planning to get a new CITI card, for spends approx. 1.5LPA. Would this be recommended for such a range. I would be ok to pay the joining fees since I am getting a Yatra voucher with it which I can use.

    Reply
  28. Anoop E S

    I am told by the SBI Customer Care that SBI Prime will be available only after July 15

    Reply
  29. Anil

    Thanks for deleting comments
    Your moderation is slow as well as pathetic

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Not deleted. I approve when i get time. Usually takes about a week or so.

      Reply
  30. Prashant Gupta

    The min. One can earn considering only other spends is 2.7% and not 5%. Please correct above. Overall one can earn around 3%.

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      I’ve updated the numbers. Yes, it differs as we can’t find exactly where ppl would spend.

      Reply
  31. Vijay

    Does the Prime card accrue reward points for Fuel Transactions? Most credit cards do not give reward points for fuel transactions.

    Reply
  32. Anilkumar

    Everything looks goods, but It seems annual charge of 3000 +Tax is bit high

    Reply
    1. Shivi

      You can get SBI Gold card. It’s with Rs. 500/- annual fee ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply
  33. Anwar

    Hey, I was forced by a sbi sales guy to apply for tata card and got it a week back with a ~1.5L limit. When can I ask for an upgrade for prime or a better card? Most of my expenses are on travel sites, and amazon. My other card is regalia first.

    Also, I can spent ~20L on jwelleries on coming months as a part of my sister’s wedding. Is there anyway to make use of card in that process?

    Thanks

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Diners 10X promo should save you good amount.

      Reply
  34. Mahendra

    Hi Sid,

    Thanks for the article. I applied for the card and it has been approved. I will get hands on soon. Meanwhile I would like to get VISA SIGNATURE variant of the card as I saw offers on this variant. I called customer care, they have no idea how to get specific variant.
    Is there anyway that I can get VISA variant?

    Reply
    1. Mahendra

      And could you explain what is difference between prime and prime advantage cards?

      Reply
        1. Shivi

          Thanks for the clarification AS! I was confused with their “Advantage” tag too! Btw, I asked the SBI card team. Prime is issued against FD of minimum 50,000/- only!

          Reply
    2. Shivi

      There is no specific way. You just need to wait and keep asking SBI customer care if they have the VISA variant IF they issue you a MasterCard!

      Reply
  35. Pradeep N

    I am using SBI Elite card since last so many years when it was Signature card. Recently PP benefit was announced on this card. I had earlier used the PP benefit when it was a Signature card and thereafter the PP card validity expired. SBI cards is reluctant to issue me another PP card after adding the PP benefits to the Elite Card. They say that I will have to renew it myself at my own cost to avail the PP benefits. Is SBI stand correct ? Can I get the card closed now and get my proportionate renewal fee back for the unused period ?

    Reply
    1. Shivi

      Renewal fees are non-refundable as per the terms & conditions of the card. You can close your current SBI Elite Card and apply for a new Prime card or new Elite card but that would come with its’ own set of charges.

      Reply
  36. Anonymous

    I have the Simply Click credit card. It has been only a couple of months though. Can I upgrade to Prime?

    Reply
    1. Shivi

      Guess what? Ask SBI card customer care! Ting Tong ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply

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