25+ Best Credit Cards in India with Reviews (2019)

By | May 6, 2019

Looking for the best credit cards in India to suit your needs? You’re at the right place. Whether you want cashback, rewards, airmiles, premium or super premium cards, you can find everything here.

But remember, there is no single card that fits all, because where we spend, how much we spend and how much joining fee we’re willing to pay varies from person to person.

So I’ve analysed 70+ credit cards across various banks and complied a list of 25+ best credit cards in India based on various user segments.

With about 10 active cards in my wallet, the below list covers most of my cards and even more. Let’s begin!

Best Lifestyle Credit Cards

Lifestyle cards are nothing but the cards that suits almost everyone for any kinds of spends, be it dining, online shopping, etc. Hence, these are all-rounder cards used by vast majority of users and it is easy to get approved as well. 

  • Suggested income: 6 Lakhs+
  • Suggested spend: 3 Lakhs+

1. SBI Prime

SBI Prime Card

SBICard Prime is one of the best credit card in India for many cardholders since 2017. From milestone benefits to lounge access, SBI Prime has everything you need under single roof and that too with a renewal fee waiver on 3 Lakh spend. USP of this card is that you can use it to pay your house rent and get a great reward rate on it. So 3L spend shouldn’t be tough to achieve.

2. HDFC Regalia First

HDFC Regalia First Credit Card

Unlike SBI Prime which is a paid card, HDFC Regalia First mostly comes at free of cost, which fits well for those who are not comfortable in paying joining fees. The best part of HDFC cards are its merchant offers, as very often you get 5X/10X promos which will increase the reward rate of this card to the roof. I suggest you have at-least one HDFC credit card in your wallet and this one is good to start with.

3. Amex MRCC

American Express Membership Rewards Credit Card

American Express Membership Rewards Credit Card (MRCC) is the best way to get into the world of Amex. If you use this card just to get the 1000 MR points monthly by spending Rs.1000*4 times, you can easily get a return of more than 10%. Apart from that, you will also get access to the Amex merchant offers which are very lucrative most of the time.

4. SBI SimplyClick

SBI Simplyclick credit card

If your spends are mostly into online and is less than 3 Lakhs a year, you could prefer Simplyclick. With SimplyClick card you get accelerated rewards on few merchants as well. It also comes with sweet milestone benefit (Cleartrip vouchers) that makes this low annual fee card Click!

5. ICICI Coral Amex

ICICI Coral Credit Card is the beginner range of credit cards in the ICICI Bank’s Gemstone Credit card collection. If you really want a credit card from ICICI, this is probably the only best credit card that makes sense in lot of aspects: Low fee, decent benefits & ICICI amex offers.

6. ICICI Amazon Pay

If you want a FREE credit card from ICICI, Amazon Pay credit card is the best one out there. It’s also highly rewarding for the spends on Amazon.

7. RBL Platinum Delight

I wouldn’t really suggest RBL credit card unless you’re already banking with RBL and got a chance to get a card from them. Just like Amex MRCC, this card too gives 1000 Points on spends of Rs.1000*5 times a month which can get you a reward rate of ~5% on spends of around Rs.60,000 a year.

8. Standard Chartered Manhattan

Standard Chartered has very good cashback offers with Uber and so holding this card is one of the best way to save on your cab expenses. They also keep adding new merchant offers every now and then that are really useful. So if you’re going for SC for any reason, Manhattan is good to start with.

Best Premium Credit Cards

Premium credit cards comes into picture when your lifestyle falls bit beyond ordinary. Premium credit cards are kind of upgraded versions of the lifestyle cards that we’ve seen above.

It comes with more travel benefits like domestic and international lounge access, better reward rate on high spends, etc. 

  • Suggested income range: 12 Lakhs+
  • Suggested spend range: 6 Lakhs+

1. HDFC Regalia

HDFC Bank Regalia Credit Card

It’s HDFC’s flagship credit card and has its name and fame for many years in the industry. Consider it as an upgraded version of Regalia First which we saw above.

Low foreign currency markup fees on international transactions, 5X/10X rewards with selected merchants are some of its benefits. Newly added milestone benefits increases the overall reward rate to 2% upto 8L spend.

2. SBI Elite

SBI Card Elite

SBI Elite is one of the best premium credit card with the ability to get 2 bookmyshow tickets (not buy1 get 1) worth Rs.500 every month and is one of the best Bookmyshow offer around. It suits well for movie buffs and high spenders, as the renewal fee gets waived off on 10L spend.

3. Amex Gold Charge Card

American Express Gold Charge Card (India)
  • Reward Rate: 2%-10%
  • Joining/Renewal Fee: Rs.1000+GST/Rs.4,500+GST
  • Apply Now

If you’re into premium lifestyle, you MUST have at-least one of the Amex cards in your pocket. While Amex MRCC serves that purpose as we saw earlier, Amex Gold Charge Card makes sense if you need more buying power and it’s way to the Amex Platinum.

Check out 5 Reasons Why You Should Have an American Express Credit Card. Remember, its a “Charge Card” and not a “Credit card”, hence no EMI options.

4. HDFC Diners ClubMiles

HDFC Diners ClubMiles Credit Card

If you’re more of a traveler and online shopper, HDFC Diners ClubMiles Credit card will help you save quite a lot with its 10X Reward Points and complimentary lounge access. The only downside of this credit card is that its not a Visa or Mastercard but Diners Club itself and the Diners Club acceptance is not 100%. Hence you always need one backup card to be on safer side.

5. Indusind Iconia Amex

Indusind Iconia American Express Credit Card

Do you spend a lot on weekends? Consider getting Iconia Amex Credit card. I’m personally using it for fuel spends as it doesn’t have fuel surcharge at HPCL pumps. While the unlimited domestic lounge access on this card has been revoked, its still good for the reward rate & Amex Offers.

This is for credit card enthusiasts and i would not really suggest for beginners as Indusind credit card systems are not so great at the moment.

Best Travel Credit Cards

When your life has good amount of travel, that’s when you need to have these Travel credit cards. Travel credit cards are designed in such a way that you get travel vouchers/points instead of cashback.

Also remember, most Premium & Super Premium Credit Cards also serve as a travel card in many ways.

1. Amex Plat Travel Card

American Express Platinum Travel card is the best travel credit card in the country, hands down! Its designed for high spenders as you get ~Rs.30,000 worth of travel vouchers that includes domestic travel vouchers + Taj Stay vouchers.

You get all these on spending 4 Lakhs on the card, however, your spends need to be bit higher if you’re looking for the renewal fee waiver.

2. CITI PremierMiles

Citi premier Miles (New Design)

First of all, its NOT an Airmiles card, which even most of the card holders don’t know. Citibank Premiermiles is a rewards card more like HDFC Regalia and fits well only for the Citi Priority/Gold account holders. You can also convert your points to major airlines & hotel loyalty programs.

While this card in itself is not a great card, its the way to get Citi Prestige, which you’ll see shortly.

3. Axis Privilege Card

If you’re an Axis Bank Priority customer, you can get this card for free. That being said, this card comes with decent benefit for travellers in terms of Yatra voucher redemption options. Not a great card, but if you want non-airline card from Axis, it would be this.

4. SBI IRCTC Card

IRCTC SBI Platinum Card
  • Reward Rate: 1%-10%
  • Joining Fee: Rs.500+GST
  • Apply Now

With SBI IRCTC credit card, you have a chance to save upto 10% on your train tickets and redeem them back for train journeys. If you travel by Indian railways very often (40+ trips annually), consider going for this card.

5. ICICI Makemytrip

If you can make use of the Lemon Tree hotels voucher that comes with the card, you will find a good value in the product. It also comes with benefits like railway lounge access/ airport spa sessions.

So it may be good for some, but not to me, for now. But as unfortunately not many credit cards in India are tagged as “travel card”, this card made it to the list.

Best Airline Credit Cards

If you’re a frequent traveller, you might also need to get one or more of the best Airmiles Credit cards. Airmiles credit cards makes sense if you fly frequently with the specific airline. Here are some of the best, after Jet Airways shutdown.

1. Axis Vistara Infinite

The newest airline in India has one of the best rewarding credit card in the Industry. Apart from the welcome voucher, this card gives upto 3 Business Class vouchers based on your spends and the reward rate is as unbelievable as ~15%.

It is also by far the easiest and fastest card to earn business class vouchers as Axis bank and Vistara has wonderful integration in place to post the points & vouchers to account faster.

This card needs 7.5L spend to maximize the benefit. if your spends are bit low, you may also go for the Vistara Signature variant.

2. SBI Air India Signature

No one is actually interested in flying Air India isn’t it? Well, this card gets you access to other Star Alliance Airline partner as well, like Thai Airways & Singapore Airlines, which makes it worth giving a try.

Fortunately, even Air India has decent product as i flew on one of their Dreamliner recently. Check out my first flight on: Air India 787 Dreamliner Business Class

3. Etihad Guest SBI Premier Card

If you’re flying Etihad often, it makes a sense to hold this card as it gives you the Gold tier which comes with a lot of benefits. But if you’re not into Etihad, its not the card for you.

Best Super Premium Credit Cards

With over 2 Lakh+ High Networth Individuals (HNI) living in India, they certainly need special attention, don’t they?! So banks have super premium cards that comes with higher credit limits, unlimited lounge access, highest reward rate & much more perks.

  • Suggested income range: 25 Lakhs+
  • Suggested spend range: 10 Lakhs+

1. HDFC Infinia

  • Reward Rate: 3.3% – 33%
  • Joining Fee: Rs.10,000+GST (Free for select accounts)
  • Full Review: HDFC Infinia Review

India’s most Prestigious Infinia Credit Card comes with a minimum credit limit of Rs 7 Lakhs+ and the unique NPSL* (No Pre-set Spending Limit) feature makes it stand out. HDFC’s most popular 5X/10X rewards promos with select merchants makes it one of the highest rewarding credit cards in the country.

2. HDFC Diners Black

HDFC Diners Black Credit Card (NEW Design)

With its lucrative 10X reward points program, its undoubtedly the best Credit card in India, especially for travellers. Even without the 10X points, it comes with a great reward rate by default, as good as HDFC Infinia.

Only downside though is lower acceptance of Diners cards in India compared to Visa/MasterCard, which means, you have to keep a backup card handy.

3. Standard Chartered Ultimate

Standard Chartered Ultimate Credit Card (India)

Just like HDFC Infinia/Diners Black, Stan. C Ultimate card too comes with 3.3% reward rate. And the greatest advantage over HDFC is that you can also redeem your reward points for Amazon Voucher (temporary benefit). But it lacks the unlimited lounge access benefit.

4. Citi Prestige

  • Reward Rate: 2% – 10%
  • Annual fee: Rs 20,000+GST (Free for Citigold & Private Clients)
  • Full Review: Citi Prestige Review

Citi Prestige is a bit different card compared to the regular rewards cards. Despite being an expensive card, you get maximum benefit IF & ONLY IF you know to play the airmiles game. Holding Citi Gold/private account will further help you get accelerated rewards. If you are doing trips in APAC, this card can help you save well (Hotel+ lounge+ Limo).

5. ICICI Emeralde

This card comes with a very low reward rate on spends but if you put a value to the benefits like Spa/Bookmyshow/Wifi benefits among others, you’ll find the overall return to be reasonably good.

6. Amex Platinum Card

This card is entirely different from any other card that you see here. This is because, with any card we usually calculate the returns based on spends, but here you need to calculate the returns based on the benefits you get by holding the card, like: hotel privileges, concierge, etc.

It’s an amazing card for someone who loves luxury travel. The welcome bonus of 100K MR Points is great for the first year without a doubt. For renewal, you need to decide based on how much value you get from it.

Bonus: That all aside, its also OKAY to get Yes First Exclusive credit card just for unlimited lounge access benefit, as long as you get the card for free.

Bottomline

As I always say, choosing a credit card is totally based on the Individual’s lifestyle and spend pattern. Thumb rule is to get maximum returns via: welcome vouchers, card linked benefits & regular spends.

You shall have as many cards as you wish and all you need to do is find a strategy to get maximum value out of them.

And not to forget, credit card industry in India is rapidly changing and hence you need to be aware of the changes happening in the space to make the most out of your cards. 

Hence, consider updating your strategy at-least every ~6 months to stay in the trend. You may also like us on Facebook to get instant updates on latest happenings in the industry. Peace!

Author: Siddharth

A Credit Card addict, minting reward points & air miles for years. Obsessed with aviation, airport lounges and luxury hotels. Helping Indians choose a right credit card and enjoy luxury travel at affordable cost.

292 thoughts on “25+ Best Credit Cards in India with Reviews (2019)

  1. ARR

    Hi Sid,
    Thank you Sid for updating the list. We had a nice journey in the previous year. You introduced us a great app like CRED. It’s more rewarding.( They delivered a delicious cake too.) I got around Rs.70,000/- cash credit with Indusind Iconia.
    Thank you everyone for the contribution.

    Reply
    1. Pavan Goyal

      Ya CRED best way to pay credit card dues also icici has introduced PAYLATER digital credit which can pay your CC dues via upi

      Reply
      1. Yahoosharma

        How to pay CC via icici paylater?
        Guidance will be helpful

        Reply
      2. Anil

        You can’t pay by ICICI PayLater account. Early I used to pay Flipkart Cardless Credit dues, later ICICI Bank stopped that, when logged in, PayLater account is not showing for credit card/cardless credit payments.

        If you know any other trick, kindly let me know…..

        Reply
    1. Shashi

      Hello, i am a beginner for CC’s. I applied for HDFC regalia 1st and CITI Rewards. Even though i met the eligibility criteria they rejected the application due to ‘no credit history’. Let me know how to build/start a credit history. I don’t want to take any kind of loans. I have now applied for sbi simply save cc. Will they approve?

      Reply
        1. Vikas

          I don’t why HDFC have rejected my application, the branch manager tried it’s level best.
          Seems that Siddharth u need to update the story on how the banks don’t give the credit cards to the Judicial officers in India ( Personal Experience) even though my CIBIl score is 852, ITR of 19 lac. Have the SbI elite, Citibank rewards & Amex Rewards card.
          AXis informally told they won’t be able to give.
          HDFC put a negative score on my CIBIl.

          Reply
          1. Siddharth Post author

            Yes, HDFC don’t issue cards to select work groups (like lawyers). Looks like they had bad time with them in the past. Its the karma of the past generation. 😐

          2. Ebin Johnson

            It is not only the case with judicial officers. I am from IT sector, Bangalore. ITR close to 25 Lac. Hold SBI ELITE, AMEX GOLD, AMEX MRCC,HSBC. Preferred account holder. Credit score above 750, still HDFC won’t approve my applications.

          3. Siddharth Post author

            That’s weird. Did they give any reason?

          4. Amex Guy

            Ebin, for DCB/Infinia, I can see application getting rejected for non-management roles in general. For other HDFC cards, the preferred account portal should have pre approved offers. I mean, CIBIL and ITR should not even be in picture.

          5. Vikas

            Hahahahah. Don’t know how they believe that Judicial officer wont pay or cheat them when they impart the justice to these banks on the daily basis.
            Lawyer can be understood as they can say , see u in court and fight for the recovery.

            Judicial officers are like another govt employee and they do their work.
            What so unsafe about them. Instead I believe we would be safest client they will see who will pay 😉
            They are ready to have my salary account and offer me privileged account .
            ICICI & HSBC just approved my colleague’s application and now they are ready to offer me also despite the HDFC incident & assured it will sail through.

            What’s so hush about Axis and HDFC,

          6. ANIRBAN SEN

            I had my HDFC since 2005 and they upgraded over the years to Regalia and then split to Regalia and Diners Premium. Never faced any difficulty being an advocate. Perhaps having a Preferred Account (min. 2 lakhs balance) would help.
            In the alternative, take a look at your CIBIL report.

  2. Gautam

    How does YES FIRST Preferred Credit Card fare against this list ? Earlier, it was in direct comparison to HDFC Regalia ? What about now, after devaluation

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Its somewhere between beginner & premium cards. As they reduced offers too, I decided to skip it from the list.

      Reply
  3. Shailesh

    I think Diners Club Miles also deserves a place in the list..

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      I think you need to read slowly 😉

      Reply
  4. Captain Bishuddha Bharatiya

    Typing mistake. Under best premium credit cards instead of writing spends range you wrote suggested income range.

    Reply
  5. Ruhul Laskar

    Could you share a detailed review of CITI Ultima card?

    Reply
    1. Shivi

      .@ Ruhul – Citi Ultima is an invite only card and doesn’t even feature on Citi India’s Site page. The best Citi we have here is Prestige and Ultima (Infinite variant) is, imho, issued to very few who have spends in excess of 50-80l/yr.

      Reply
      1. Mayank Grewal

        I didn’t realise they were still issuing the Ultima to new customers. Thought applications had been frozen circa 2016 or so.

        Reply
        1. Ruhul Laskar

          The previous variant of Ultima got rebranded as Prestige. Ultima is now offered only to Ultra High Net-worth Individuals and the eligibility is an ITR of INR 5 crore and above. It has a joining fee of around INR 2 lac. It will be great to see if any member could share a hands-on experience of it along with list of all welcome and renewal benefits.

          Reply
      2. Ruhul Laskar

        @ Shivi, I am currently using Prestige and was eager to know more about the Ultima, like you mentioned, it’s not even featured on CITI’s website. Centurion is also not listed on AMEX’s website, however, there are several reviews and unboxing videos available for it. Ultima is one such card for which one would struggle to find a detailed review!

        Reply
  6. SH

    Great post.

    Citi Premier Miles has a new design? Not aware of that.

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Yes, they’ve changed to global design. Check Citi website for new designs of other cards.

      Reply
      1. Arjun S

        I really like the new global designs. Wished they would have changed it for the Prestige too.

        Reply
  7. Vineet

    Thanks for a great article. It was eagerly awaited.
    Could someone pls tell me if I should ask HDFC for a change to DCB. MY limit on regalia is 2.7 lakhs. And my ITR is 15 plus. The thing that is holding me back is that my Regalia is LTF. And presently I don’t see any hope of spending a large amount on a single CARD to ask for waiving my annual fees ( blame it to my habit of collecting cards like trophy– HSBC, SBI, AMEX{2}, YES BANK, HDFC, ICICI). Plus the issue that I just have one another Mastercard. Rest is Visa or Amex. So should I go ahead, sacrifice LTF for Diners. Is there a possibility of being accepted or should I wait till my Regalia crosses 3 lakhs limit

    Reply
    1. Gopal

      Vineet,
      I would wait before asking for the upgrade as i recently asked for an upgrade via my RM from Regalia First with 5 lacs limit and with ITR of 18 lacs and also having a few FDs and being a preferred customer. RM was pretty confident about the upgrade being done but the upgrade was rejected as the reason my RM said was that the CC division rejected saying they need 1.65 lac nett salary or should keep a FD of 11 lacs.

      Reply
      1. Raj kumar

        Gopal,
        Does keeping a FD of 11 Lacs makes you eligible for DCB?

        Reply
    2. Praveen Katiyar

      @Vineet
      Wait for limit to be on positive side of 3L. Keep checking in ur hdfc credit card online account for limit increase/paper form to chennai, using ur ITR.
      Register few billers in Smart Pay Online after logging into ur hdfc credit crd account. (Mobile/LIC etc)
      For the time being spend more on Regalia, to increase ur chances of getting DCB.

      Reply
    3. Abhishek Roy

      I would suggest you to wait and let the limit be increased to around 4 lakhs and then try.

      Reply
  8. Prashant Gupta

    Thats again a good article, but i think u can add a sub category of fuel cards as thats one of the expenses we all do. U can add citi indian oil and hpcl icici amex coral card- these i think are the most used cards.

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Will need to do a separate article. Thanks for the inputs.

      Reply
    2. Pavan Goyal

      Hdfc regalia does not give cash back for fuel spends only hdfc moneyback card gives

      Reply
  9. Praveen Katiyar

    @Sid
    YEs First cards need mention for their industry lowest FC markup of 1.75% among CC. Correct me if im wrong.
    YFE with unlimited lounge thru PP for add on also.
    Although devalued, YFP/YFE are easiest/cheapest way to get PP, not to mention card on card basis. Also both were LTF.

    Reply
    1. Aditya Agrawal

      +1 YFE is an excellent card. Even at rewards rate of 1.5%, unlimited Domestic + International lounge access even for Add on members makes it killer to own.

      Reply
  10. Yash Dabriwal

    Hi Sid,

    Do any of these offer points in utility bills ? Currently pay upwards of 6L annually on utility so wanted to maximize my points there

    Reply
    1. MT

      take any card which gives points on wallet transactions , and then pay utility through wallets , which card you can get is upto your income and credit history and bank discretion

      Reply
      1. HIMESH MISHRA

        AXIS,SBI & ICICI gives rewards points on wallet amount load.

        Reply
    2. Praveen Katiyar

      Have a look at SC Titanium.
      It gives5% cashback (not points) with certain limits, on minimum trxn of Rs. 750.
      I like that card.

      Reply
    3. Abhi

      AFAIK, nearly all cards give RP on utility payments except for AmEx, isn’t it so ?? Which card are you using ?
      Anyhow, if you use any card to pay that huge amount, they’ll most probably stop/revert RPs.

      Reply
    4. Manoj Singh

      You may have to Try ICICI Amazon Card, with offers unlimited Rewards and you may pay all your Utility Bills from Amazon Pay. Reward value is also Rs1=1RP
      or go for SBI Prime Card which offers 20 Reward Points per Rs. 100 spent on standing instructions of Utility Bills payments.

      Reply
  11. Amann

    Great Job Sid.

    This was bound to happen with YFE dropping its rewards rate. Where do you think the next top Credit card will come from?

    I’m currently relying on SCB ultimate for rewards and YFE for lounge access.

    Also please update for the best debit cards as well. I think Development Credit Bank Elite / Family Cashback should make the cut there along with Axis Bank Priority and IndusInd Exclusive. Please post with your thoughts.

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Ola card from SBI & flipkart card from others seems to be in works. They can give grand reward rate if they wish, esp. Ola. Let’s see.

      Reply
    2. Surya

      Amann,
      For Debit Cards, I have DCB Elite and Indusind Exclusive, both present excellent value prepositions and DCB gives 1.6% flat cashback on all spends (although with capping of Rs.2000 per month and Rs.20K per year, which converts to Rs.125000 expenses/month which qualify for cashback) and IndusInd Exclusive gives ZERO forex markup charges, Buy1Get1 Bookmyshow (and the quotas here for this BIN range is mostly available in my experience), Complementary Lounge access ( I have used them multiple times without any issues) as main attractions.
      I have multiple accounts in Family sharing of IndusInd exclusive, which presents me with excellent options for benefits. I opted for World MC for one account and Visa for spouse.
      Cheers!

      Reply
  12. Shashi

    Hii, any difference between sbi simply save credit card vs sbi simply save ADVANTAGE credit card?

    Reply
    1. Ankur

      Both cards are same except simply save advantage is issued against FD.

      Reply
  13. Gkcards

    Citi prestige is free only for private clients, and not for Citigold

    Reply
      1. Prasun khaitan

        Hi Sid,

        Please compare yesprivate and infinia cards

        Thanks and regards,

        Reply
  14. Abhishek Roy

    One can’t help but drool at the sight of all these cards!!!

    Reply
  15. Dion

    Which offers have Yes downgraded on their Yes First Preferred Credit card? They still have priority pass so lounge access, low foreign currency mark up of 1.75%, no validity on reward points. Makes this seem more promising than Regalia.

    Reply
  16. Smruti Panda

    I think you’re too harsh on Yes Bank First credit cards. The Exclusive variant deserves more than just a mention. The reward rate has dropped by only (~0.5%; considering both 1.5% and 3% slabs). Considering the wide spectrum of target audience in the super premium category, some may still find it better than Prestige, Emeralds and Platinum.

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      It’s there at the bottom. Didn’t feel it worthwhile to list it with separate title among other great cards 🙂

      Reply
  17. Mouli

    Sid,

    Great list and I feel Yes First Exclusive deserves a place somewhere in the bottom for their unlimited lounge access for add on holder and decent reward rate in most of the categories

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Its there in the bottom if you pay attention. 🙂

      Reply
  18. Keshav Sodhi

    Hi, the card you have mentioned in the description for RBL Titanium Delight is their Platinum Delight card.
    Also, feel Platinum Maxima from RBL could make it to the list. Do check that out! Close to 2.2%+ Rewards on crossing 3.5l milestone

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Fixed. Thanks.

      Maxima is good, yet there are better cards for 2k fee range.

      Reply
  19. rudresh

    No place for AMEX platinum reserve?

    With quite high acceptance rate, HDFC Regalia has lost its sheen a bit, also it has impacted on the privilege that it used to give 3-4 yrs back

    Reply
  20. Prem Taparia

    Maybe you could also include Standard Chartered Titanium Credit Card for beginners. It’s reward rate is 5% cashback on fuel, utility and telecom, subject to a cap of Rs500 per month. With a fee waiver on annual spends of just 60K, this could easily become a free card with an annual cashback earnings of about Rs6000.

    Also I feel instead of Indusind Iconia Amex, Indusind Legend credit card would be better suited in this list. Both cards have similar benefits with the only exception that Legend is a Visa Card and therefore enjoy better acceptability, as compared to Iconia Amex.

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      # I don’t prefer Tiny max. caps

      # Legend comes at high cost. Not worth it.

      Reply
      1. Prem Taparia

        Well, you have included Manhattan which is also “Tiny max. caps”. My point is if any BEGINNER wants to have SC card, then Titanium is a better choice than Manhattan.

        Reply
      2. Pratik Gattani

        @sid legend comes at high cost but with amazing benefits..its easy to get 50-60k cashback with legend per year

        Reply
        1. Siddharth Post author

          As long as the spends are on weekends, Iconic Amex just does the same + Cool Amex offers every now and then.

          Reply
          1. Points Addict

            SCB SVT is a very peculiar card. 750 is their magic number. 750 is the minimum transaction value for any kind of cashback. 750 is also their annual fees amount.
            I usually load Fuel for 750/- to be eligible for this cashback. Recently, I almost missed noticing the annual fees they charged because of some system error. Because guess what? both show up as 750 Debit 🙂

  21. Hussain

    I hold a regalia first card. Is there an option to get this changed to the diners club miles. I had heard that they dont allow this as its considered as a downgrade. Also how is the acceptability of diners club these days? Would there be a benefit of changing from Regalia first to Diners club miles?

    Regards

    Reply
    1. Mayank

      I asked the same query, but they told only chennai office can tell whether the card can be changed or not. They told me to send a letter along with some verification documents to get the card changed. But as you know its HDFC CC, so for different people they provide different answers.

      Reply
    2. Rohan

      I hold regalia first, applied for diners club miles through the link that comes to apply for credit card once you logout from hdfc netbanking. Card is delivered in 3 days from application without any query. Now I hold both regalia first & diners club miles.

      Reply
      1. Mayank

        Is it really possible. Then How do the reward points get generated? I mean the value of each point is 0.30 paise or 0.50 paise?? How does it differentiate between the two?

        Reply
      2. Manoj Singh

        Hi Rohan,
        Just want to Confirm that Both Card Limit is Combined or Separated each Card Limit.
        As I am already Holding Diners Club Mile if Limit is not combined will try for Regalia.

        Reply
    3. Jambui

      My allmile was about to expire. Got message from hdfc that regalia first would be sent as replacement.

      I email card cust care that send me clubmiles instead as both are on same level. Losers replied that card is already sent, white lie as card if sent is usually recd the next day in metro cities.

      Forwarded mail to grieviance. Tadaaa clubmiles message recd within 3 days with a proper follow up email by grievance.

      So not everything is done by chennai dept.
      Grievance n nodal officer got full power if request is a valid one.
      Spent 5lac+ in 9 month and i am having diners black(fyf) now.

      Reply
  22. Praveen Perumalla

    Iconia is probably not premier anymore given that the lounge benefit is taken away and no more RPs on fuel. YFP is still a better choice given its BMS discount, PP, Golf, and other benefits.

    Reply
  23. Parag

    CITI PremierMiles is only free for 1st year in CITI priority account. They will deduct the fee and refund it if you maintain minimum balance for priority account.

    Reply
  24. Hanumant Shankarrao Jayebhaye

    I spend 60- 70 k on fuel per month can you suggest me a credit card for fuel purchase?

    Reply
    1. MT

      I suggest go for any card who gives points for wallet recharges and pay through wallet , most premium cards have surcharge waiver but limited to 100-450rs per month , any fuel transaction above 45,000 per month would prove worthless , you will end up paying a lot of surcharge, on wallet transactions, no surcharge plus you get full 0.75% cashback of the OMCs which in a CC transaction will be adjusted against the surchaRge you pay

      Reply
    2. Mahesh

      You apply for cit bank Indian oil card .every 150 spent at Indian oil you get 4 RP and 1RP =1 Rs.it means 2.6% Return.

      Reply
  25. Arjun S

    Although the SBI Elite is a good card, the experience I have had with their customer service has been a nightmare. I have a dispute for a transaction of Rs. 1.5L that has been going on for over a year now. Long story short, I was charged by SBI (and I paid my bill), but the merchant (a big software company) has confirmed multiple times they did not receive the money. I can’t even begin to describe my experience dealing with their customer care. The only reason I am keep that card active is on a hope that I get my money back. I am also considering going to the consumer court.

    Reply
      1. Arjun S

        I agree. I have 2 Amex cards – Jet Privilege and MRCC and the customer service is on a different level altogether. Although I must add that Citi Prestige customer care is a close second. Even for international transactions I use my Citi or Amex inspite of a higher forex charge. I just can’t trust the Elite card anymore 🙁

        Unfortunately I will have to give up the Jet Privilege card and take something else – maybe the Platinum Travel.

        Reply
        1. Praveen Perumalla

          One of my colleagues had to deal with a similar ordeal with SBI and ultimately got it settled in the court with 50% compensation from SBI.

          Reply
        2. MAA-traveler

          I’ve the SBI Prime card and currently chasing for a charge reversal (fraudulent transaction) though the amount is not as high as Arjun S for the past 3 months and I keep getting parrot reply only even after escalating to nodal officer which itself is a farce I guess. I’ve disabled the international transaction for good.

          That being said SBI Prime is one heck of a card. I get over 7% (5% birthday/Utility spends plus Yatra/Pantaloon and Pizza Hut vouchers) returns which can be statement credit and not some overpriced Maldives stay or J/F flight ticket. Also what is not mentioned here is Vistara Silver is given as long as we hold the card! After one year there is a review (where we can be downgraded) however we can re apply for the status and get the upgrade and Vistara lounge voucher. I’ve got the same for my card. I also think we can re apply for the Priority Pass after expiry.

          I guess a good strategy would be:
          Rs 5 Lakhs in SBI Prime (birthday/Utility spends)
          Rs 4 Lakhs in Amex Plat Travel
          Rs 0.5 lakhs in Amex MRCC
          Amazon Spends in ICICI Amazon Pay Card

          For Rs 5,900 annual fee (SBI has spend based waiver, MRCC can be companion LTF and Amazon Pay is LTF) we can get very good returns. Plus it is easy to hold these cards and doesn’t require any high ITR or banking relationship. 🙂

          Reply
          1. Anmol

            Hi MAA-traveler ,

            How did you get Vistara Silver Membership again after first year. I tried to re-apply after the first year membership ended & my account with Vistara was downgraded. SBI refused on the grounds that it’s a first year benefit only.

            Thanks in advance

          2. MAA-traveler

            @ Anmol,
            I had applied again on the SBI Card site with my Vistara CV number and got Silver again for one year along with the upgrade and lounge vouchers.

          3. Hari

            But, I don’t see any option to re-apply for the Vistara Silver status on the SBI website. Could you please throw some light on that ?

          4. Anmol

            Hi MAA-traveler ,

            I am unable to find any option on SBI Site which allows me to renew my silver membership for one more year. Can you please point the exact location on the site.

            Thanks in advance

    1. Surya

      Arjun S,
      I have SBI CC account since 2007, was upgraded with time, and in 2019 Jan I requested them to Cancel my card, which was being used for 12 years, with good spending domestic & international, and when I called helpline to Cancel the card, the POORLY TRAINED executive simple said OK SIR, it will be done in 3 days.
      SBI CC team did not even try to ask the reason for that.
      Later, after 15 days or so, they realised this and called me more than 25 times (I didn’t keep a tab on counts though 🙂 ) and it was too late by then.
      Their customer care is the Achilles Heel.

      Reply
  26. Ameya

    This list has come at the correct time. I am planning to shift to Mumbai and the rents there are too high. But as we have read so many examples of travel hacking, I want to apply the same for rent hacking. There are websites which help you pay via credit card, so am gonna use them.
    From this post, I expected to find the highest % which can be earned thru the transaction.
    My analysis of the returns so far (ignoring the HDFC club as the benefits may not last forever):
    1) Vistara Infinite (But I don’t want a miles dependent card)
    2) Amex Platinum Travel (Personally, having used this, I am inclined towards this card)
    Can you guys help me find any other rewarding cards for this purpose?
    My monthly rent will be 40k.

    Reply
    1. GTMAX

      The first card in the list provides you the perfect solution with 5% cashback on Auto Utility Payments which cover the Redgiraffe rent payments too. SBI Prime!!

      Reply
      1. Ameya

        No maximum reward points per transaction non-sense with SBI Prime? Actually, I am really fed-up with my SBI BPCL. So am a little averse to SBI.
        But thanks GTMAX.

        Reply
        1. Abhishek Roy

          No limit to earning points. The only three cards worth holding in the SBI arsenal is SBI Prime, SBI Elite and SBI Simply Click.

          Reply
    2. Abhishek Roy

      Without a doubt, SBI Prime. There is no card which comes even close to this. Other good cards are Infinia, SC Ultimate and DCB. Always avoid utility bill payments with AMEX as you don’t get any RPs for that.

      Reply
      1. Raj kumar

        Abhishek,
        Thanks for the information about Amex not giving points on utility payments.
        I have noticed they don’t give points even for Paypal transactions too.
        I did a transaction on Yatra through PayPal and card being Amex, I got 0 reward points.

        Reply
        1. Kiran

          Hi,

          I have received points on Paytm and amazon bill pay as well.

          Try those payment options.

          Cheers,
          Kiran

          Reply
      2. Ameya

        Is the rent transaction at redgiraffe a utility bill payment? If so, then it squashes the entire case for the Plat Travel.
        Thanks a ton guys!

        Reply
      3. Ameya

        Hi Abhishek, I just got off a call with AMEX customer care and they informed that they classify only:
        1) electricity bill
        2) gas bill payment as utility bills.
        So redgiraffe is an online transaction which is eligible for points

        Reply
  27. Praveen Perumalla

    I was comparing your card collection from 2017 article, all the way to 2019 and a big change in the collection indicating the need to update the portfolio per the changing market. Great collection, Sid!

    Reply
    1. Abhishek Roy

      Agreed, but the thing is, owning these cards is highly subjective. It’s based on your income and spends. You might not own the best cards (Super Premium Cards) but what we should aim for is to own the best card as per our income and spends. The point is whatever be your income, there will always be a card that will the best for you for your spend strategy and your income. I think the idea of this blog is to make the user know about such cards and make them realise about the benefits so that the pay could make an informed choice to own such cards and thus cannot be taken for a ride by any credit card agents or the fleeced by the banks.

      Reply
      1. Siddharth Post author

        “You might not own the best cards (Super Premium Cards) but what we should aim for is to own the best card as per our income and spends.” – That’s an amazing Point!

        Reply
        1. Praveen Perumalla

          True. I can only agree with that. I assume that a lot of the regular readers have learned that and I hope more people understand that and benefit out of credit cards instead of burning their hands with CC debt.

          Reply
      2. Mouli

        Point Well Made,I have seen few who blindly chase Super Premium Cards whose benefit will be available only if you spend X amount per year which they cant spend
        So its better all does a self study on where they fit and apply and get those cards .
        Super Premium cards are not Super Premium for all !

        Reply
  28. Nabendu Mondal

    Hi Sid,

    Nice update to previous years list. Can u please update the article with Indusind Iconia being LTF currently for everyone .I got both the variants issued but the Amex one is the one which is worth going for . Also any idea if the PP benefits on sbi prime is limited to only the first 2 years as quoted by someone in its respective thread. Yes cards may mellow down its 10x 5x with the current situation. Axis seems to be getting better with offers and promotions . And a flipkart and ola cobranded cards will be fabulous just like Amazon nailed it with ICICI Amazon pay

    Reply
    1. Alok Patil

      Hi Nabendu, can you please tell how to get Indusind Iconia as LTF. I currently don’t hold an account or card with Indusind.

      Reply
      1. Nabendu Mondal

        Hi Alok ,

        Please check the Indus Amex Review page linked in the article . I have mentioned the contact details alongwith how I procured the card . I also did not have any relationship with the bank when I applied for the card

        Reply
  29. Shubham Velani

    Should I use regalia for fuel expenses or is something better available?

    Reply
    1. Ankur

      You can switch your fuel spends to Citi Indian Oil card or Standard Chartered Super Value Titanium card.

      Reply
      1. Sakthi

        Paytm also gives 5% return on fuel spends (max 20 per transaction). I switched all my fuel spends to Paytm @ IOC fuel stations.

        Reply
        1. Bhavya

          Can you please elaborate how Paytm gives 5% return on fuel spends ?

          Reply
      2. Praveen Katiyar

        Yes. Perfect. I have both.
        StanC Super Value Titanium card is not tied to a particular petrol pump and cashback can be redeemed for statement credit. Plus it also gives u 5% cashback for utility payments with certain conditions and Rs 750 min payment amount. I have continuously reaped atleast Rs100 per month and availed fee reversal by spending Rs 60k annually.
        Citi Indial Oil is LTF for me and also nice if u have Indian Oil nearby. This card can be mostly sourced LTF.

        (JUST A SHORT INTRO. FOLLOW RESPECTIVE THREADS ON CARDEXPERT.IN FOR DETAILED INFO.)

        Reply
    2. Bhavya

      You can also try HDFC Bharat Card for cashback on fuel (5% cashback). Bharat card can also be used to pay utility bills via PayZapp which also earns 5% cashback on PayZapp transactions. You can also apply the utility bill promocodes to earn additional 5% cashback in your PayZapp wallet. Effective cashback ~ 10% on utility bills on PayZapp using Bharat card.

      Reply
  30. Mohit

    Hi Siddharth, You might want to check your post as you have exposed the card numbers of the users in this post.

    Secondly, I am holding more than 15 active cards on the premium segment across the banks. This is great forum to collaborate. I will be happy to share my experiences as well.

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      “exposed the card numbers of the users” – May I know where?

      Reply
  31. Amar Mehta

    Hey Siddharth,
    Great article (as always), thank you!
    I don’t see Yes Bank Credit Card featuring anywhere, I applied for one based on your reviews last year on this site and that’s become my primary spending card.
    I had couple of questions and couldn’t find an answer to it in the article, maybe I missed it.
    – Which is/are the best card/s for Utility Bills Payment?
    I am currently using SC Titanium Rewards Card.
    – Is there something like maximum/optimum no. of credit cards that one can/should hold for good credit history? Can I have multiple cards per institution vs 1 card per institution?

    Thanks again for the great content, experiences and guidance your provide.

    Reply
  32. jambui

    Yes preferred deserve place instead of icici coral amex.
    I feel your opinion is a little biased as you own coral and kind of justifying it.

    it still provides 1% return instead of coral .5%/1% for offline/online.
    plus 4 priority pass visit plus 12 matercard visit.

    and best part is free for most of users.

    Reply
    1. Priyansh Modi

      Love the article.. and damn, not just Siddharth or AmexGuy but there seems to be so many who are knowledgeable about the card game.

      Anyway, have quite a few cards myself (HDFC diners premium, Citi premieremiles, SCB ultimate, SBI IRCTC, amex Reserve, axis privilege, yes preferred first, jet plat)

      The aim is to of course upgrade few of them (HDFC diners black and/or yes first exclusive being the key ones).

      Would love to hear tips for same.
      Average card spends- 1l/m
      HDFC spends- approx 35-40k (preferred customer) limit around 5.1l
      Yes card- not much.

      ITR- 15lpa approx

      Any tips on getting those two upgrades? Would be amazin.
      Any tips on how

      Reply
      1. Praveen Katiyar

        If ur YFP is more than 6month old, call customer care and ask for YFE.
        Take some interest free EMI (on portals like paytm/amazon or anywhere). Online portal refunds you interest portion, u just pay 18% GST on interest amount(small sacrifice). But bank gets interest. Then again try with customer care may b after bill is generated. U wd get YFE surely.

        Reply
      2. Ankit Arora

        Hi Priyansh,

        HDFC has an internal criteria wherein they can upgrade to DCB if you have a limit of 5L or above. Ask your RM and if he/she does not help then please ask him/her to get you in touch with the Credit Card Sales team. I followed this route only to upgrade to DCB in January this year. Hope this helps!

        Reply
  33. Surya

    There was a comment few months back that ‘A very good bank is coming up with a very good card’. But no update after that, is there any update on that story?

    Reply
    1. Praveen Katiyar

      Im also waiting anxiously.
      Good u reminded.
      If i have to guess, may b Barclays..!!

      Reply
  34. Vineet

    Can anyone shed light as to paying through which credit card will accrue reward points in NPS. Today i came to know that Nps payment through AMEX doesnt accrue points as it comes under Utilities.
    Will Regalia or Premier miles or Elite accrue points? Or for that matter any card by ICICI or HSBC or Yes bank

    Reply
    1. Praveen Katiyar

      @Vineet
      I have made NPS payment via credit card, I would like you to check extra amount(plus gst on it) that NPS charges for using credit card. That generally nullify accrued point value(taking1% in general).
      Still as i said I have used it and plan to use it during Deepawali or any other time to reach spend based milestone, as during those times there is net gain plus i get free credit period by using credit card.
      Users with Regalia/PM/Elite can tell u about point accrual.

      Reply
        1. Anoop E S

          you can pay NPS at PFRDA website using credit card option.

          Reply
        2. Mayank

          SBI e pay accepts it.
          Also, yes you will get the reward points using Regalia First/ SC Manhattan. One thing you should note that payment for NPS comes under insurance category, so you can also invest when there is some 2X or 3X offer for insurance payments. That way you will warn more then the fee you had to pay for doing NPS transaction.

          Reply
    2. MAA-traveler

      @Vineet,

      There is an extra charge of 1.1% for credit card payment for NPS. So you may want to use a card which can give you more returns than that. I guess you should get points for Amex also but assuming even you don’t get, you can can still use the card card strategically for meeting the 4L spends for Plat Travel or 4*1000 charge per month in the case of MRCC. Further you may use when there is a spend based offers on Amex (or any other card for that matter).

      Reply
  35. Ashish

    Hi Siddharth
    Appreciate you taking time off to update this article with the latest details.
    This is the only place which gives me hope of holding a DCB card after I read the comments.
    DCB is a dream card for me.
    I currently hold:
    1> Regalia card with 6l+ limit (primary) (expiry in June)- I regularly check for upgrade but still no luck, but when ever I get a chance to enhance the limit I do.
    2> Citi Reward with 5l+ Limit – not using it frequently.
    Wanted some guidance on how to get to DCB, the regalia card should i get it extended or go with Mailing my forms directly to Chennai.
    WIll not renewing my Regalia impact my credit score?
    PS: I dont have the monthly inhand salary of 1.65l

    Reply
    1. John

      You should be able to get DCB by sending them the upgrade forms. Usually they won’t upgrade at the time of renewal. In my case I send the upgrade forms soon after renewal and it was approved.

      Reply
      1. Ashish

        Thanks John,
        Will wait then.
        In case any body has any other suggestion do let know

        Reply
        1. Praveen Katiyar

          @ Ashish

          As far as i know renewal of card does not impact CIBIL. Its just continuing of your old account.

          After login to your HDFC CC account, register some payments like LIC/Mobile bills in Smart Pay.
          It increases the chances.

          Reply
      2. Ashish

        Finally got my DCB by sending them the upgrade form directly

        Reply
  36. Wahed

    Sid,
    I want to apply for Amex platinum travel card based on ITR of 6.5lac,
    Should I apply for platinum travel or MRCC,
    My current cibil score is 754,
    Which Amex card is easy for approval.
    Reply appreciate.

    Reply
    1. Rakesh

      @Wahed, you can apply for Amex Platinum travel card ..they anyway offer MRCC soon as companion card 🙂

      Reply
    2. Praveen Katiyar

      @ Wahed

      MRCC is Lifestyle card, i.e. suits everyone. Best part is, if u can spend 90k/150k in a year next year’s 50%/100% fee is waived. 1000 points every month for 4 transaction of more than Rs. 1000, even on wallet loading.

      Amex Platinum Travel is indeed best travel card out there, but it has no fee reversal, the rewards are great if u can use it. It gives you maximum value on 4lakh spends.

      Read reviews of both cards on cardexpert.in and decide which suits your needs and spending pattern.

      Hope it helps.

      Reply
  37. Anoop E S

    Hi Siddharth

    any advice on jet cards?

    checked with ICICI and Amex. If we request,we can change to any gemstone card upto emaralde (ICICI) and Plat Travel or Plat Reserve (Amex)

    Reply
  38. Vishal Kumar

    Hi everyone, can you please suggest a credit card for me?

    Here’s a brief about me: I’m an entrepreneur running a startup and most of the payments through credit card will be towards Google Ads (in INR), Facebook Ads (in INR), International service companies (in USD). The annual spends will be around 10L-15L which will be paid through company account. I’m on a salary of 9L CTC.

    Also, can I get a Personal card variant and use it for my startup expenses to get the maximum benefit?

    Reply
    1. Priyansh Modi

      Would suggest StanC Ultimate/SBI Prime.
      Good cards for the spends you are looking at.

      Also, corporate cards often have less points or offers. Hence would suggest personal cards more.

      P.S- HDFC Diners Black is good card to have but will take time for you to reach I think.

      Also, use Cred app to pay the bills for your card. Approx rewards of 1-2% for doing just that- paying your dues.

      Reply
    2. Praveen Katiyar

      I would recommend Yes First (Preferred or Exclusive) as its FX markup is only 1.75%, for your USD payments. 2nd choice would be HDFC cards having 2% FX markup.

      Check Sid’s article – 7 Best Credit Cards in India for International Travel/Spends (Low Forex Markup Fees)
      If your spends are high and u can recover ur Annual Fee HDFC Infinia is worth, else Yes First Cards (generally LTF) are better.

      @Sid (& other readers) are better placed to tell you whether there could be some flagging if you use personal card for company spends..

      Hope it helps.

      Reply
  39. Ricky Kodnani

    Hello Sir,
    I’d like to know if are there any subscriptions to email reports regarding cards and if they are available… is it available for specific banks or credit card types

    Thanking you in advance.

    Reply
  40. Nammu

    On the SBI cards website, there are 2 cards – SBI Elite & SBI Elite advantage- What is the difference between the two? I even used to compare feature but can’t find any difference.
    Similarly what is the difference between SBI Prime & SBI Prime advantage?

    Reply
  41. Kiran

    I have developed a strategy with below credit card and their spends-

    1. Diners Black (Fees- 5000)- Main card. I earn 10x benefits from it most of the times. Lowest FX markup fees.
    2. Amex MMRC-(Fees- 1500) Secondary card- mainly for 18k & 24K points- so that I can offset the Diners Black renewal fees from 2020 onwards.
    3. Standard Chartered Titanium (Fees-750)- For Fuel expenses- Irrespective of any petrol pump, I get 5% cashback on the fuel expenses. Have earned more than 2500 in 5-7 months.
    4. Yes Bank (LTF)- For adhoc offers.
    5. HSBC Visa platinum-(LTF) For 10% cashback and other swiggy offers.
    6. Indusind Aura- Just wanted to have Indusind card in my wallet (backup)

    Now, I am planning to have one more credit card specially for travel benefits. probably, I’ll go for Amex Platinum Travel card.
    Can anyone suggest if I can still get more benefits by getting any other card.

    Thanks
    Kiran

    Reply
    1. Praveen Katiyar

      @Kiran
      Nice to share your strategy. Few more

      If u like watching movies take ICICI Coral/Rubyx for 1 free ticket on bookmyshow (max value of ticket should not be more than 250 in Coral, 300 in Rubyx). Some say its hard to get the discount as its first come first serve, but i have 7 out of 10 times got it. Else i use Yes First card for 25% discount on full value.

      Upgrade or get Yes First cards (Preferred/Exclusive), they have a FX Markup of 1.75%. Plus they give u priority pass in case u visit foreign lounges. Exclusive gives you add on priority pass with unlimited complimentary visits.

      Maximum fuel cashback including Surcharge, possible in SC Titanium is Rs. 200 per month. Other categories are Telecom & Utilities on which max cashback per month is Rs 200 & Rs 100 Respectively. If u need more cash back on fuel, add another card probably Citibank Indian Oil Card, but its applicable only on Indian Oil Outlets. U can check Cardexpert.in for best fuel cards.

      Hope it helps.

      Reply
      1. Kiran

        Praveen,
        Unfortunately, inspite of my eligibility for Yes First Preferred, I have been given Prosperity Edge (some error while applying, I guess). Will see if they provide an upgrade in next three months.
        ICICI- They don’t seem to have lucrative features or specific benefit in Gemstone category. I mean they are jack of all trades, masters of none. I’m not a big fan of watching movies in theaters, so haven’t really thought of going for this option.
        SC titanium gives 250 cashback in fuel category- that means I have Rs 5000 at disposal only for fuel. thats good for me.
        Citibank- I’ll apply for the Citi Rewards cc, via vodafone website. they are running an offer – 1 year 1.5 GB daily data and 100 SMS daily & unlimited calling. that saves me approx Rs 2000 for a year. P.s – Only for Prepaid customers. Also Standard Chartered Titanium is much better than Citi Indian Oil Card.

        Reply
        1. Praveen Katiyar

          @ Kiran
          Not that ur collection is majorly short with anything, I can understand that u r trying to maximize the gains.. let me try once again..
          U are looking after travel card, Amex Plat Travel is a great choice but u can also give a thought to Axis cards.. Axis Privilege is a option and Axis Vistara cards are also notable..
          Axis Privilege should be your go to card if u can spend 4L and like Annual fee reversal..
          Axis Vistara Infinite/Signature is beneficial if u like airline card and can use Vistara network.. there isn’t a fee reversal though..

          One pro of all Axis cards is that u don’t pay extra charge (with other cards u need to pay charge plus gst on it) when u pay insurance premium at LIC website and Axis gives u reward points whereas Amex doesn’t.. Axis cards also come with no limit of transaction size on LIC, whereas MC/Visa Max transaction size is 1L on LIC website..
          One con of Axis if I have to name is that they have poor customer care and no website if you just have their card, only app to see your card activity..
          Decide vis-a-vis Amex Plat, go for Axis if u have lot of annual LIC payments, u save trx charges and get reward points..
          See individual reviews on cardexpert.in and decide..

          Hope it helps..

          Reply
    2. Viswanathan

      @Kiran,
      Diners Black used in HDFC SmartBuy website gives points worth 33% on travel. That is the best one AFAIK

      Reply
  42. Venkat

    How do you guys maximize 10x on Diners Club Black? I guess Gold purchases are not counted. Nor are gift cards? What are the best options?

    Reply
  43. Shail J

    Although I’m not a great fan of icici credit cards, I’m still impressed with some of Rubyx and Sapphiro card features like Domestic lounge access and Bookmyshow offers
    1. Domestic lounges: ICICI Bank issues Amex and mastercard variants for the same CC account in case of both Rubyx and Sapphiro which gives you 16 and 24 domestic lounge accesses respectively in a year. For Rubyx it’s 2/qtr on mastercard and 2/qtr on Amex I. e 4/qtr on both cards put together. And so in a year each of these cards allow you for 8 accesses likewise it’s 24 for Sapphiro. This is a great benefit if you are travelling with your family.
    2. Bookmyshow: unlike lounge accesses, bookmyshow offer is limited 2 tickets per month for Rubyx up to 300 Rs regardless of the variant. It’s max 2 tickets PM on the account. Likewise for Sapphiro get 1+1 offer for up to 400 Rs twice a month
    3. Railway lounges: 2/qtr. Limited to 4 cities i believe at this point
    4. International lounge access: applicable on Sapphiro through DragonPass.

    I believe, these cards should figure somewhere on the list.

    Reply
  44. Naitik Mehta

    Can anyone explain that which debit card or reward programme can give us max cashback or benefit ..specially when we pay our credit card dues via cred app? i have shortlisted five banks SBI,INDUSIND,AXIS,DCB OR DBS?
    or any other cashback programme by bank in your mind?

    Reply
    1. Amex Guy

      Citigold/DBS Treasures is the killer combination. Use DBS for first 1 lac every quarter, and then enjoy 2% cash back on Citi. When I say DBS, I don’t mean digibank.

      If you get prefer NRV accounts, use DBS for first 10K every month, then use Citi debit for 1% cash back.

      Return on CRED is a bit of hit and miss and totally depends on the payment gateway they use. But 1 in 3 times I do get lucky. I’m sure even this hole will be patched at some point so don’t rely on it in your computations for return.

      Reply
      1. Naitik Mehta

        Thanks Amex guy

        by DBS you mean to say, digi savings pr dbs treasures account? prefere NRV account is different than this?
        in my city i.e Surat ,city bank provides citigold account with initial 30L cheque only,so dont prefer to go with it.
        Actually i dont have use of debit card in daily life,mostly do all transaction on CC.so thought to have some cashback thru Debit card payments on CC bill dues.which bank consider payments of CC on cred app as regular pos spend?

        Reply
  45. Tejas Ghongadi

    One of my friends got the SBI Prime card as LTF as part of an upgrade from SimplyClick. I was quite surprised with this as it is very rare for SBI to give a Premium card as LTF. Also, the friend fairly young and not in a very high income group.

    I am looking at closing the SBI Elite card as I have moved on to SCB Ultimate & HDFC DCB. Thinking about asking SBI to convert SBI Elite to LTF. Have been using the SBI Elite (Previously SBI Signature) for the past 5 years and have given them decent business. Will it work?

    Reply
    1. Himanshu Kainth

      Tejas,

      I too upgraded from Simplyclick to Prime. Surprisingly they didn’t charged me. Also i didn’t get any welcome benefit (that is obvious)

      Even i am surprised what went good to not charge me. No high spends no high income.

      Reply
      1. CHINTAN

        @Himanshu Kainth
        Are you working in finance company?

        Reply
        1. Himanshu Kainth

          Haha. Why did you ask? Any special benefits to finance companies employees? I am a self-employed business.

          Reply
          1. CHINTAN

            I thought SBI is issuing LTF Prime CC to finance companies employees.

      2. GTMAX

        SBI charges card fees only once in a year. So if you were charged fees for SimplyClick before you upgraded, you will not be charged for Prime in that year. It will be chargeable from next year onwards

        Reply
    2. CHINTAN

      @Tejas Ghongadi,
      Your friend is working in any financial company?

      Reply
  46. Justin

    Hi,

    I am looking for a lifetime free zero annual fees credit card which offers complementary lounge access and complementary priority pass membership with minimal forex markup rates. I have an excellent credit score.

    Initially I had not bothered to look around and simply got an HDFC Regalia First card at an annual fees of Rs. 1000, the first card I came across which suited my needs. I have been using that for more than 3 years. Now I have offers of lifetime free IndusInd Platinum Aura Edge and Yes Prosperity Edge which offer the same advantages without any annual and joining charges.

    What is your opinion on these cards in terms of reward points and their redemption, forex markup, customer service, etc? Should I close my HDFC card and take any one of these? What could be my next steps? Thanks

    Reply
    1. Ankur

      Regalia First already offers good forex rate in between all three. Yes provides domestic lounge access. Redemption options are good in hdfc and indus ind and as don’t have yes card so cannot comment on that. Customer service is hit or miss depending on your query.

      You should not close your first card as its linked to your credit history part in cibil etc.

      You can apply for yes card if you want to expand your portfolio of cards without any joining fee.

      Reply
    2. Mayank

      Simply register for smart bill pay and Regalia First Card will become free. Ask HDFC Bank customer Care to do so.
      Don’t take yes bank prosperity edge card (I have it and don’t use because of points devaluation and limited offers).
      You can also ask HDFC bank CC that whether any card upgrade offer is available on your Regalia First card or not.

      Reply
    3. Praveen Katiyar

      @Justin
      As Mayank suggested, register smart pay and try getting annual fee for regalia waived.
      However, in my honest opinion, take LTF yes card and slowly move up to first preferred to first exclusive.
      Yes First Preferred can be sourced LTF card on card basis if existing card has 3L limit. Whenever you reach Yes First Preferred you get complimentary priority pass with free visits. Forex also 1.75% only. Though devalued it still worth when LTF. After just 6 month of usage i got upgraded to yes first exclusive from yes first preferred.
      Yes bank is aggressively marketing its card, i would recommend to have one LTF as long its available.
      Stay away from Indusind.. i hold Platinum Aura LTF and its just another plastic.
      Hope it helps.

      Reply
  47. Kalpesh Vaghani

    I have YES private Credit card which is called Black MasterCard, Extremely Disappointed from concierge services. it was my experience from last three months.

    Reply
    1. Amann

      Did you pay for this card or was it FYF or LTF?

      Either way you should definitely write to them and tell them how useless they were.

      Reply
    2. Ankit Jain

      @Sid and all, Can some help with 1-2 credit cards with Reward point convertible to Cash credit.
      For Standing instruction on Bill is SBI Prime.( 5%).
      But , for other daily transaction which one is giving CashBack (cash) and how much.
      I got DCB, post reading your Blog at earned 50K points :). But can not convert it to cash. Same with HDFC Infinia/Regalia/SC Ultimate (GV rarely available).

      Need cash earning for credit bill payment from Cred: Suggest payment option better than DCB Bank (i have 1.6% flat), I heard SBI wealth(2.5%), can we convert reward point of SBI signature card to cash. I think @MAA-traveler can answer, if read.

      and review on Yes bank reward point redemption (is it cash possible).

      Thanks,

      Reply
      1. MAA-traveler

        @Ankit Jain,
        With SBI Wealth card you can redeem SBI Prepaid Gift Card which is almost like a debit card. There are Amazon and Flipkart gift card also. Redemption is never a issue and no charges other than Rs 50 courier charges since it is a physical card. I have also used to pay by points at offline stores of Big Bazaar, Lifestyle and Reliance Trends.

        Reply
        1. Ankit Jain

          Thanks @MAA-traveler , superb. I will explore to get sbi wealth account

          Reply
        2. Raj kumar

          @MAA-traveler

          Can you elaborate more on SBI Wealth card and eligibility of it?

          Reply
  48. ankit verma

    My mother recently got SBI Prime card for LTF. She has a savings account and few fixed deposit with NAV of over 20 lacs with SBI.

    Reply
  49. Sumit Agarwal

    Hi, (a) which is/are the cards you use? (b) which is the best credit card in the country across categories?

    Reply
  50. Dr Kunal Shah

    Hey , have been following you since the last couple of years and you truly always have an in-depth analysis on the credit cards.
    Me and my dad have an Amex Platinum travel and HDFC jetprivilege diners card.
    As HDFC doesn’t allow two cards for an individual.”, I am planning to give one of the HDFC diners jetprivilege away a Nd get a HDFC Diners Black or HDFC Infinia .
    Also I hve been offered an Amex Platinum charge which I want to hve for all its fancy.

    Want your advise on two things
    1) should I get diners black or Infinia?
    2) should I do away with one of the Amex Platinum travel card as the platform for booking in Platinum travel and Platinum charge is different.

    Thanks

    Reply
  51. UTKARSH

    Hi Sid,

    I have been following your posts for more than a year now and you are doing an awesome job here.
    I wanted to ask about AMEX Platinum travel card (though I have read your review of it). I already have an AMEX MRCC and HDFC Regalia Card along with other not so premium CC. Since Amex platinum travel card has benefits with spends more than 4L but these spends are already part of the above two cards. My requirement is for a card that gives me benefits for domestic flight tickets more than international. Does it make sense to get an AMEX Plat. travel card for this? Or is there any other card that gives me benefits for domestic travel?

    Reply
    1. Praveen Katiyar

      @Utkarsh
      Since you are looking for a travel card I’m assuming significant travel annually.
      Only Airline co-branded card (among Air India-SBI & Vistara-Axis) worth holding these days is Axis-Vistara. If your travel cities are part of Vistara Network then go for Axis Vistara card. It gives u CV which can be best used to upgrade or buy another ticket.
      On the other hand, Amex Travel Plat makes sense as if u apply for it, (at times when there is offer) your Amex MRCC can be free from fee as long as you hold Amex Travel Plat. In this scenario you use MRCC for just 4trxn and get 1000 reward points and MRCC spends can be done on Amex Travel Plat. Travel Plat gives u experience (not upgrade/tickets).
      Hope I could put things in perspective.

      Reply
  52. Rajeev

    Hi Sidhharth,

    Yes Bank has launched “Yes Cart” which is similar to “SmartBuy” of HDFC Bank

    Now Yes Bank credit card holders can enjoy 5X reward rate for spends on “Yes Cart”. I think the launch requires a review of your 25+ Best Credit Cards in India with Reviews (2019)

    Yes First Exclusive and Yes First Preferred are back in the “Best Super Premium Credit Cards” and “Best Premium Credit Cards” moreover other credit cards of Yes Bank can also find place in other categories.

    Request you to have a look and update 25+ Best Credit Cards in India with Reviews (2019)

    Reply
    1. Praveen Katiyar

      After devaluation, Yes Bank would have noticed a lot of decline in the card usage, so its coming back aggressively. Moreover Yes is quick learner and has many ex HDFC employees. Launch of Yes Cart makes sense in lot of way for Yes First (YF) card holders.
      Normal reward rate for shopping on Myntra/Flipkart/Amazon/Tata Cliq for YFP is 1% & for YFE is 1.5%.
      Now, with launch of 5x reward on CC through ‘Yes Cart’ reward rate shoots to 5% for YFP & 7.5% for YFE.

      People not having DCB/Infinia can use Yes First to get handsome rewards at par or more with ICICI Amazon Pay on Amazon and also on hitherto uncovered portals like ‘Myntra’, ‘Tata Cliq’ & ‘Myntra’.

      People having DCB/Infinia will be using these cards in Smart Buy but can use YF cards also get 5% or 7.5% rewards on additional portals like ‘Myntra & Tata Cliq’.

      People having YFE will use YFE over ICICI Amazon Pay on Amazon and elsewhere through Yes Cart.

      Reply
  53. Raj kumar

    Hello
    this is rajkumar from vizag
    i want to take credit card(s) for following purposes
    1. i had to make travel trips from vizag to mumbai yearly nearly 6 times and i had to stay 2 to 3 days in hotel
    2. i had to buy products from third party people (not online shopping brands like amazon, flipkart etc.,) and i had to pay for them through payment gateways like paytm, razorpay, phonepe etc.,

    now please suggest any credit card or combination of two credit cards which will suitable for my needs and i am looking for the card or cards must giving more cashback or more rewards for the above main needs

    if there is a possibility i will use the same card or cards suggested by you for online and offline shopping and for movie tickets also

    I am asking this because my salary is 30000pm and i had been spending more on the above two ( 1& 2 ) causes

    please suggest the best credit card or combination of cards that will suit my needs

    thank you

    Reply
    1. Praveen Katiyar

      @Raj Kumar
      It would have been better if you could tell the approx annual spend u plan, nonetheless I would try solving the situation:
      1) If Vizag/Mumbai/Vizag have Vistara, you can take Axis Vistara card for collecting CV points and use the same card for paytm loads too.. this way you can cross the spend threshold and recover your annual fee too..
      2) Another option is see is using Amex MRCC card, on just 4 trxn of Rs. 1000 or more in a calendar month you get 1000 reward points and 1 reward points for every Rs. 50 spend. This card can be sourced first year free and full annual fee can be reversed on spend of just 1.5L (50% is you spend Rs. 90,000) annually.
      Read review of both these cards on cardexpert.in with your annual spend in the mind, and decide. Also go through 25 best credit cards for 2019 to have options that may have not crossed my mind.
      Hope it helps.

      Reply
  54. Shiv Kumar Singh

    Hi Sid,
    There is good news up ! The discontinued ICICI Diamant Program is under the process face lift. A senior ICICI Official said that they are currently restructuring the card and the one can expect it in the second phase of this year. All the benefits would be revised but still it would remain invite-only. I am excited about getting this new revamped version of the ICICI Diamant Card……

    Reply
  55. Arun

    Thanks for the updated list bro. Sadly, none of my cards are present in the new list. I think I have to change my credit cards.

    Reply
    1. Praveen Katiyar

      @Arun
      Many of the cards which I have were in last year’s list but not in this list..
      As rightly said by Sid & Abhi earlier, do not chase premium/other cards for the sake of it.. however it does feel sad sometimes to know that cards in ur portfolio aren’t among the best..
      Treat this list as pointer for the cards worth holding, first try low hanging fruits, every 3-4months see what u need and how to best achieve it by spending least..
      It’s not even easy for me to match or get closer to this list.. but it help me to make smart decision.. wish u many more cards and happiness.. cheers..!!

      Reply
  56. Nihar Das

    Hey Sid this year’s list of cards quite matches with lot of readers & card enthualist’s opinion about Credit card scenario in India . I was inspired to get the DCB after reading your last year’s list and reactivated my 6 years old card with HDFC Money-back card in Nov 18 (I was not using this card since 2013 & I had other mid level cards ) and worked through to DCB now ! Thanks for the post.
    One area you can add every six to nine months could be your Card strategy to maximize rewards/ cashback / miles and hotel loyalty points transfer . It will help lot of people to make the best use of their available cards . Thanks again.

    Reply
    1. Praveen Katiyar

      @ Nihar
      On my latest physical form application to Chennai, with 13L plus ITR they refused to give me Regalia, instead offered me LE.
      Regalia is something which Im just interested to later upgrade to DCB/Infinia, else Regalia isnt much needed cos i have other cards.

      Reply
      1. Himanshu Kainth

        Praveen,

        May i know your limit and spends? You should easily got the card based on your income.

        Send again after 3 months.

        Reply
        1. Praveen Katiyar

          @ Himanshu
          In 2018, I spend 2.3 L on HDFC Moneyback, this year its already 1.8L. Yeah i think I would take LE as of now, and as u suggested would send the Physical form 3 months down the line. Iam hopeful as my new ITR would be more than 13L.

          Lets see..!!

          Reply
  57. Varun Gupta

    Hi Siddharth,
    Its been amazing to see the amount of details reg credit cards at your portal. You are doing a breathtaking job……
    Need some help.
    Presently I am having following credit cards:
    1. Cititbank Cashback Card : LTF
    2. Standard Chartered Titanium: 750 Annual Fee
    3. HDFC Diners Club Premium : LTF
    4. Yes Bank FP : LTF
    5. ICICI: Coral Visa: LTF

    As i am a frequent domestic traveller, i need a few more premium cards with Lounge facilities/ better rewards for Travel.
    Highest limit on my credit cards is more than 7 Lacs & monthly gross salary is Rs 1.3 Lacs
    can u please suggest me a few premium card which i may be eligible as per my credit limit or salary. LTF cards are more preferred.

    Reply
    1. Praveen Katiyar

      @ Varun,
      Nice to see your collection. As u only indicated your spend areas as ‘Domestic travel’ with LTF preference, I would like to suggest the following:
      a) Upgarde YFP LTF to YFE LTF. Call Customer Care and request if your YFP is more than 6 months old. This way your reward rate will be better and you get Priority Pass which u can use unlimited in intl travel.
      b) Upgrade HDFC card to Diners Club Black, but Im not sure if you would get it LTF. If the benefits outweigh Annual Fee then you can go for it. Depends on how much u can spend on it.

      Hope it helps.

      Reply
      1. Varun Gupta

        Thank you praveen. I m surely looking forward to your advice. Can you further suggest more premium cards w.r.t Citi/ StanC, Axis etc. wherein more benefits may be available.

        Reply
      2. Varun Gupta

        Also suggest how Diners clum Premium to Diners Club Black.

        Reply
        1. Praveen Katiyar

          @Varun
          1) In HDFC net banking, use card upgrade option to upgrade to DCB. Limit of more than 5L is helpful, if limit is more than 5L try upgrade else in the net banking there is option for LE too, use it. On a few occasions I have got LE not in net banking but either by sending physical form to Chennai or whenever I get sms for LE.

          2) If u can use Vistara network, take Axis Vistara Signature for upgrade vouchers (from economy to premium economy upgrade) and nice reward rate. No fee reversal though and not much reward after 4.5L spends. Go through Axis Vistara card review on card expert.in Vistara Signature is middle level, if u like travelling business class take Axis Vistara Infinite.

          Hope it helps..!

          Reply
          1. Varun Gupta

            @Praveen,
            thanks a ton dear. you guys are doing a great job!!

  58. Sudheer Reddy

    Hi Sid,

    Can you suggest me a CC which will allow me to convert reward points in to cash.

    thank you for your time in this,
    Sudheer Reddy.

    Reply
    1. Shail J

      Amex MRCC & Gold cards…you can get statement credit… Not sure about other Amex variants. Also with ICICI gemstone cards like Rubyx, Sipphiro etc yiu can convert payback points into cash credits @ 25p/payback point.

      Reply
    2. Praveen Katiyar

      @ Sudheer
      I think by ‘convert reward points in to cash’ you really mean ‘Statement Credit’, if that’s what you mean, I would suggest you have a look at ‘HSBC Cashback Credit’. It is a mid level credit card, not very attractive, but yes it addresses your requirement of getting ‘1% unlimited’ statement credit on all your spends except wallet loads.

      There are other better mid level cards/premium cards, but your needs can be better addressed if u can tell the total annual spends you would do & category of spends.

      Reply
  59. Shubham

    Which credit card to use for Wallet Top up like PayTM, PhonePe etc. for maximum points and rewards?

    Reply
    1. Prashant Gupta

      Amex mrcc, gold, plat travel and stanc ultimate..

      Reply
    2. Praveen Katiyar

      @ Shubham
      Arranged in order of reward rate:
      a) StanC Ultimate(3.3%)-Great card, 5000+GST fee
      b) Yes First Preferred(1%)/Yes First Exclusive(1.5%)-Priority pass with complimentary visits, and Low Foreign Currency Markup(1.75%) – Can be sourced LTF
      c) Amex Card- Amex MRCC/Gold Charge gives u 1000 reward point (18000 reward points can be converted into Rs. 7500 statement credit) every month for 4/6 txn of more than Rs. 1000 per month even for wallet load – MRCC can be sourced FY Free and Annual fee waiver at 1.5L annual spend. Not to mention best Customer support.

      Hope it helps.

      Reply
  60. Riswan

    Hi Siddhart,

    I’m a dropshipper, so I make lot of small foreign purchases on Aliexpress in USD. I want to reduce the extra transaction cost. What is the best bank account, credit and debit do you suggest me?

    Thank you.

    Reply
  61. Nitin Santhosh

    Hi Sir, my net income from two sources (salary and business remuneration) adds upto Rs 5 lakh per annum. I have had an Indian Bank credit card since 2012 when I was around 19. I have an excellent credit history with a score of 737 in Equifax. I have applied for Kotak Signature Royale Credit Card. I fly typically 8 flights a year. I play golf as well. Please tell me if I can apply for the American Express Club Membership rewards card? Thank you.

    Reply
    1. Praveen Katiyar

      @Nitin
      Amex MRCC eligibility says 6L ITR but had I been in your place I would definitely tried using my ITR acknowledgement of FY 18-19.
      All the best.

      Reply
  62. ICONIA_AMEX_ASPIRANT

    Hello Sid sir,
    Check out RBL bank money Tap Credit Card-

    Online transactions – 2.5% Cashback
    +
    Monthly bonus 1000 RP (= Rs. 250) on 5 txn of Rs.1000 i.e 5% Cashback
    +
    Annual spend milestones.

    Reply
      1. ICONIA

        Hi Sid,
        HSBC Bank silently launched CASHBACK CREDIT CARD. Card gives 1.5% Cashback for Online transactions.

        Reply
  63. SG

    what are the best credit cards for rent payment through RedGiraffe now that SBI Prime has removed it as a biller?

    Reply
  64. Vishal

    Given the better 10x reward point system on Diners, m considering downgrading from Infinia to Diners Black 🙂
    The extra 10x reward points partner sites for Diners black continues until December this year!

    Reply
    1. Kiran

      I have an doubts on the word- downgrading.

      Is it really a downgrade from Infinia to Diners Black? I mean, in terms of pure benefits, Infinia does have few more features, however, in terms of points and value for money and returns DB does outshine.

      Has there been any new upgrades/feature addition in Infinia which completely makes this card better than DB.

      Kiran

      Reply
    2. Praveen Katiyar

      Yes.. at the moment DCB with 10x partner seem more attractive than Infinia. Also since I hold YF Exclusive, priority pass isn’t needed. That way Infinia already hard to reach seem lesser attractive than DCB.

      Reply
  65. Sunny Bansal

    Sir HDFC have recently updated my regalia to infinia. I also received a same card for my spouse. Received 2 priority pass cards for me and spouse. Both priority pass were issued in my name and my spouse name but have same membership no. on both cards. Can we together visit lounge having 2 priority pass cards with same no. On it?

    Reply
  66. Dr Pankaj Gupta

    Any views on yes first business credit card, mainly for PP / lounge access and as backup card for DCB. Being offered LTF

    Reply
  67. Niket Prasad

    Hi Siddharth,

    I have a StanC ultimate credit card and Amex Platinum card. I have HDFC Regalia which I use for lounge access. I had been happily using Ultimate for most of my spends gaining 3.3% however they have reduced redemption options in a big way. I need a card with having 3%+ reward rate which can be redeemed on travel/Amazon pay/etc. HDFC Infinia i have been unable to get although my salary account is with them. Net Income per month is 2.4L and ITR is 30L+. DCB is not well accepted and the problem with HDFC guys are you are unable to get hold of them. Can you suggest a card for my international spends. I get a 1.5% cashback on Ultimate. Is there a better or equivalent cashback card for foreign spends. Average spend a month on card is 2L including 50% on international travel.

    Regards,
    Niket

    Reply
  68. PD

    Hey Siddharth,

    I am new to this credit card game. I have a query – Can I opt for a premium card with my LLP’s ITR. As my personal ITR is just at 10L(I don’t withdraw a lot) but LLP ITR is around 60L. So, is it possible to get based on LLP’s ITR or I should start withdrawing more and then apply using personal ITR.

    Reply
  69. Amod

    Hi,
    I am revamping my CC portfolio and would like to maximize variety in Banks to cover discounts offered on each Bank Card.
    At present in debit cards I have an ICICI (demat) , HDFC and SC (salary account) and in CC I have Citi Reward, Amex Gold and SC Titanium.
    I would remove a few and like to add a couple of more ( if not one cc) to it, by reducing the HDFC debit card and shutting the account, Amex CC ( too expensive) & SC Titanium (No great Benefits) . Your suggestions on the Cards I should consider.

    My usage is on Shopping, Movies, Restaurants. Not a big traveller but wouldnt mind a few travel benefits here and there.

    Reply
    1. Praveen Katiyar

      @Amod
      I would not have closed my HDFC account, instead i would have applied for HDFC CC (cos they are the industry leader and do come up with offer often), mentioning my account number as existing relationship with dem, it helps getting better CC.
      Amex Gold is ok, or change it Amex MRCC, use any of these cards for wallet load and Amex offers plus MRCC gives annual fee waiver at just 1.5L or 50% fee waiver at 90k spends. Just 4 trxn of more than 1k every month gives u bonus 1k points.
      Start with HDFC, grow slowly. All the best. Hope it helps..

      Reply
  70. Sanjay Garg

    Hi I Sid,
    Nice Information on Cards..
    Please add me in your mailing list for news letters and updates….
    Rgds

    Reply
  71. pranav

    Hi,
    I Spend at least 2.5 lacks a month in utility payments for my factory through indusind platinum aura edge credit card.
    Can you suggest me some card that can maximize my rewards for my spending.

    Thanks

    Reply
  72. Nikhil John

    Hi Siddharth,

    Thank you so much for this blog.
    I am looking for an ideal credit card to use. Currently I use Citi rewards card.

    My spends are around 20k per month:
    Hathway, Vodafone, Netflix, Youtube premium
    Zomato orders(almost 12k)
    Misc shopping, going out etc.

    What should my ideal card be?
    Should I just go for SBI Prime? I really like the option to set a daily limit in Citi Card. Do all cards have this facility?

    Reply
  73. Shekhar

    Kind of unrelated to this post but I would like to know how are you folks managing multiple credit cards? Are you keeping all of them in your wallet or using some app to store card number, expiry, cvv etc.?

    @Siddharth thank you for this post. It has helped me pick the right cards for my needs.

    Reply
  74. Ankur

    Hi Shekhar,

    Different banks provide different features so you don’t need a phyical card example ICICI cards details are available in their app.
    But if you don’t want to carry the physical card you can note down or click a picture of details.

    Travel cards with lounge access require physical card. Various combination by various needs of people. And these days any wallet can easily hold 5-6 cards so covers most day to day scenarios.

    Reply
  75. Mickey

    @ Nikhil John – difficult suggest a card randomly without knowing your ITR and travel needs. But instead of SBI Prime go fo SBI Simplyclick OR HDFC Regalia First if you are eligible

    Reply
  76. Mickey

    @ Shekhar – different cards are used online and offline depending upon needs, limits and offers. You can save 1 or 2 cards on website you use often for shopping/ traveling/ wallets etc. It’s safe because all transactions have to be authenticated via OTP anyway, except in Payzapp

    Reply
    1. Shekhar

      Thanks for the replies Mickey and Ankur. I carry 2 credit cards and 1 debit card in my wallet. I was hoping there is a reliable app in which I can store the information about my other cards.
      I guess, I would have to save the same in my phone either as text or as photos.

      Reply
      1. Ankur

        Hi Shekar,

        For saving details of cards you can check password managers that don’t store data in cloud. Example- Enpass that has option to store data locally on your phone or if you want on your Google drive etc. Check out some solutions and settle on option that works for you.

        Don’t store online debit card details, credit cards have much better protection if anything goes wrong and these days person can take out money via OTP from SBI and HDFC bank atms without debit card too as banks are demoting debit cards now.

        Reply
  77. Mickey

    @ Praveen Katiyar – was reading your posts, did you manage to get the Regalia?

    Reply
    1. Praveen Katiyar

      @Mickey
      Yeah, I did get Regalia, with no LE as LE happened a week before. Waiting for upgrade to DCB hence spending heavily on it. 10x/5x point crediting is a pain though.
      Mickey on a side note, Mickey is my pet name.

      Reply
        1. Praveen Katiyar

          Aah.. this question.. it keeps ringing in my head.. since i crossed 5L and got regalia.. i keep thinking.. whats next in HDFC i should target.. 6 months down the line..
          Recently i have re-read infinia and hands on infinia thread again.. with all comments.. (may b my 4th time)..
          What i inferred, i need to slowly start with a saving account n keep building relationship with HDFC.. as Iam about to invest my savings, i need to wait for this..
          My next target is DCB without surrendering Regalia, DCB is both manageable and within my reach.. and as pointed in these threads once you get DCB, HDFC will try to offer u Infinia now and then as upgrade to Regalia..
          I already hold Yes First Exclusive (LTF), and the olny benefit i see myself using is Intl. lounge access for me and my wife using PP. Hence Infinia’s other benefit (like golf/ no preset limit etc.) are not attractive except higher 9x limit.. but against 10k fee..
          DCB although with lower 9x limit is ok for me considering 5k fee and lower fee reversal target.
          What would u do Mickey if u are at my place ?

          Reply
          1. Mickey

            @ Praveen – just saw your reply, new comments get lost sometimes in the box below..

            I think in your case DCB is fine since you already have the PP benefits, and remaining you can get from Regalia. This way you stay on ‘both’ networks/ systems and get the best of each.

            But with the high spending you are doing now on Regalia, how can you be sure they will approach you for DCB after 6 months? Roughly what is your spend target for these 6 months?

            I’ve never received any upgrade inspite of crazy spends and before due date + advance payments.

            I upgraded from Moneyback – Regalia First – Regalia both times after about 10 months by sending an email to Nodal officer. Even my Moneyback card I received after they rejected my application. I wrote a stinker to the N.O and received my first HDFC card in 10 days🤪

  78. Shasank

    I am holding Indusind Legend Signature card & until now its the best card with every transaction of 100 rupees I get 2 rewards points equivalent to 2 rupees which can also be encashed out. I had paid 9999 rupees as one time fee & its free for lifetime. Also I get 4000 points on completing 4 lakhs per annum as extra rewards.

    Reply
    1. Himanshu Kainth

      Shashank,

      Legend signature at 10K ? I paid 10K for iconia amex with equivalent vouchers

      10K is good deal. You said 4K points on 4L spend. I don’t see this. Will check with customer care.

      Reply
        1. Himanshu Kainth

          Considering if you spend 6L with this card and only on weekends. You can save 2.67% with this card. Wish iconia had similar milestone spend benefit.

          Reply
    2. balaji

      “A special bonus offer awaits you. Earn 4000 bonus reward points on spending Rs 6 lakh or above within one year from the date of card issue!”

      The 4000 bonus reward points is only for the first year of issue as per the TnC from theie website.

      @Shashank,
      are you getting this reward bonus every year ?

      Reply
  79. Ankur

    @Shasank – But you are restricted to weekend spends as weekdays spends are 1 rupee only. For weekdays, you could have much better card that has much better return based on requirements. Refer to Sid’s list.

    Reply
  80. Mayank malik

    hey sid
    I am Mayank and I am a digital marketer I spent over 1cr every year on digital ads I wanna ask you what’s the best card for me that give me good cashback

    Btw your article on the best credit cards is so detailed I really liked it

    looking forward to your reply

    cheers
    Mayank Malik

    Reply
  81. Anish Gupta

    I’ve shifted jobs and have to shift my bank accounts as well.
    Through my HDFC account I had the original Regalia card (Free)
    I’m getting an icici account and card (mostly Rubyx
    Is there a point of keeping hdfc card since it’s one of your recommended cards or drop it?

    Reply
    1. GTMAX

      Why would you ever want to drop an HDFC card and that too a free one?

      Reply
    2. Ankur

      @Anish – Hdfc card is always recommended in collection as they have good offers. Free should not be closed and if its a first card then if closed will have bad effect on your cibil credit history.

      Reply
    3. Praveen Katiyar

      @Anish
      Keep HDFC card and account both. HDFC is a major CC player. They know CC game don’t drop HDFC for ICICI.

      Reply
      1. Anish Gupta

        For their offers only I wouldn’t want to leave their CC network.

        Thing is, to maintain my Regalia Card I need to maintain a very high balance >2L in my bank account. I don’t know what will the charges be if I don’t maintain the balance.

        Keeping multiple bank accounts screw my personal balance sheet a lot as I would now have 3 accounts + Paytm Bank. So once settled, I am wondering what to do. I don’t how notorious is HDFC in charging fees or for downgrading my account, will they remove the charges.

        Reply
        1. Jasper

          @Anish Gupta downgrade your account to max account. Youll need to keep just 25k and no debit card fees also or any other charges. This wont downgrade your regalia card.
          You can keep your credit card without saving account too but wont be getting any future card upgrades that easily.

          Reply
  82. Ankit

    Which of these credit cards are available on “Card on Card” basis?

    Reply
  83. Shri

    @Sid Do you have an article explaining how travel insurance works (trip interruption benefits) on the premium/travel credit cards? I would very much appreciate your insights.

    Reply
  84. Rahul

    Hi Sid,
    I have been a regular follower of your blog, and your insights are really valuable.

    I currently have a bouquet of Amex Plat Travel (First 4 lac) + LTF Diners Black (all 10X + remaining spends) + CitiBank Indian Oil Card (only for fuel spends), which I use as my primary cards.
    I am looking for a backup card (for places where only Visa or MasterCard works), spends would be < INR 2 lac and therefore I am looking for maximum reward rate. I won't want to use Citibank card because of poor reward rate. Currently, that Card for me is a LTF Yes First Exclusive.

    What do you think abt the following:
    – Should Yes First Exclusive remain my primary non Amex/DC card for all other spends? Or are there better options?
    – Does the above strategy (overall) need a review? Am I missing out on a better value card?

    Reply
    1. Anish Gupta

      Hi Rahul,
      I would look at ICICI Amazon card (1-5% return, Free) or a SBI SimpleCick (2-10% return, INR 589)
      Best Wishes
      Anish

      Reply
    2. Shailesh

      How to get Diners Black LTF ? I have been trying but some how my RM is unable to get it LTF.

      Reply
  85. Shiv Kumar Singh

    Hello Siddharth, can I get Citi Prestige LTF,
    Currently I hold HDFC Infinia (LTF), HDFC Diners Club Black(LTF), ICICI Emeralde, ICICI Diamant Credit Card….

    Reply
    1. Ankur

      Hi Shiv,

      Citi does not issue Prestige as LTF. It is only first year free for citi private customers.

      Reply
    2. Neo

      Citi Prestige is free only for Citi Private clients ( NRV > 5 Cr). Anything less & you would have to pay the 20K fee.

      Reply
      1. Shiv Kumar Singh

        It means I have to increase my relationship…

        Thanks for your reply….

        Reply
  86. Prem Kumar

    I just applied for HDFC INFINIA credit cards with 2 add-on cards for my wife and son.
    I want to know whether we all 3 persons get 4 complimentary access to airport lounge each quarter by card it self or not?

    Furthermore we also each individual may enjoy free UNLIMITED Airport lounge free access with food etc around the world with priority pass or not?
    We all 3 get INDIVIDUAL priority pass card/membership or not?

    Please clear all doubts as the bank team has no accurate pieces of information.

    Reply
    1. RAKESH

      You will get 4 lounge visits per quarter ONLY for the PRIMARY CARD HOLDER through the MasterCard lounge access program. The add-on card will only work for swipes at retail outlets.

      If you hold an INFINIA, you can avail the priority pass benefit of accessing both domestic and international lounges as per PP Program for free. The add-on priority passes on your card are also allowed free lounge access.

      If approved, you will get 3 Credit Cards (1+2 add-on) and 3 Priority Pass Cards (1+2PP Add-on) when you receive the cards.

      Reply
      1. Mickey

        Rakesh – of course the add-on card holder can access the lounge in India

        Only condition is that Primary and add-on cannot use the same lounge at the same time

        Reply
  87. Anish Gupta

    Fresh Query:
    So in the last 1 year I have accumulated a nice bouquet of cards. My requirement is minimum cost maximizing rewards. I’ll list them, their cost and place of use
    1. Regalia – LTF (Rent, Redgirraffe)
    2. HDFC Jet Privilege – 5k (Jet usage)
    3. SBI elite – 5k (Bookmyshow, upgraded from SBI Prime with GV)
    4. Gold Charge Card + MRCC – 4.5k (Wallet top up, points for Jet)
    5. I’m get icici Rubyx cards – LTF (2 cards Amex and Visa/Master)

    Way forward which card should I keep and which should I cut. Annual CC expense reducing to below 3 L because no Redgirraffe.
    1. I’m looking at doing away with SBi altogether or should I downgrade it
    2. Redgirraffe use has been stopped as I stay with my family now so no rent.
    3. I’m thinking of keeping Amex Gold cards as I will generate 24k points which can be encashed for travel vouchers?
    4. Should I look at Amazon/Paytm/Ola cards. Does sbi simple click loose it’s charm because of these cards
    5. Can anyone review Rubyx cards. Last review is 2-3 yrs old.
    6. Jet privilege card I’ll be closing as well. Too many cards that’s why 😅

    Thanks for the help
    Best wishes.
    Anish

    Reply
    1. Praveen Katiyar

      @Arvind Raj
      No HSBC as they aren’t worth.. can u suggest any HSBC card in any category better than ones already mentioned here ?

      Reply
  88. Rakesh

    Hello Siddharth ,
    Thanks a lot for the wonderful site. Visiting your site has opened a whole new world for people like me. Upgraded one and acquired five new cards in last four months including DCB and Amex Plat Travel. Credit score got a hit but does not hurt so much .
    Best thing about your posts is your honesty.
    Thanks once again man.

    Reply
  89. Ujjwal

    How is the HSBC Smart Value card rated by the card experts here. I have an old HSBC Gold card(holding since 2007) that expired last month and I am getting a HSBC Smart Value card as a replacement. I already have a regalia and used the HSBC card as a backup.
    Since HSBC doesnot find much love here, thinking of taking the AMEX MRCC instead and cancelling the HSBC card.
    Does card cancellation affect the CIBIL score ?

    Reply
    1. Praveen Katiyar

      @ Ujjwal
      Closing a card (more so an Old card), does hit the CIBIL. But once in 4-6 Month that is ok as long as you keep CIBIL healthy by timely payments. That said, if your HSBC is LTF (i just feel), keep it with you, do not close.

      AMEX MRCC is a wonderful card that gives u 1000 MR points in a month in addition to regular MR points, for just 4 spends of greater than Rs. 1000 (that includes wallet load/ online spends too). Spending 90/150k in a year can give u 50/100% fee reversal. In addition to this, AMEX comes with great offers now n then, not to mention awesome customer care.

      One reason I come to cardexpert.in almost everyday is honest reviews/views. Thats what almost everybody here respects and tries to do.

      No love to HSBC as HSBC in last one year didnt came out with any great offer, only one card in their portfolio that I find simple and worth (in my opinion) is Cashback Card. But still, I would like to suggest you to take MRCC (do Min. 4 trxn of 1000 on wallet ) and just keep HSBC for some offers that may come (like in MMT) later.

      Divert your spends to HDFC, spend big on it. HDFC is where the game is. Not that Regalia is bad, but try reaching DCB or Infinia. Currently if Iam not wrong, you can spend 2.5L on Regalia between Nov-Jan and get upgraded to DCB.

      Hope it helps..!

      Reply
  90. Raj

    Hi,
    I hold a SBI prime card for 2 years. Priority pass which came with it has expired now.
    Now SBI claims that this feature of the card is only for 2 years and now membership is payable and I have to contact priority pass to get it renewed.
    I haven’t been able to find this 2 year in terms and conditions on sbicard website. But I got the same response even from nodal officer desk.

    Has anybody experienced that?

    Reply
  91. Mritunjay

    Hi Sid,
    Can you suggest if I have to keep only one (Max2) credit card which would be better for the best return? I can spend up to 5L yearly on credit card and most of my expenses include a mix of travel, shopping & dining. I have 30L ITR.

    Reply
    1. Prashant Gupta

      Diners club black with Standard chartered ultimate as backup. Though both come with annual fee. One of the amex card can also be considered.

      Reply
      1. Arun

        Sid/Prashant,

        I have DCB, SBI Prime, MRCC and YFP.

        SBI Prime has lost it’s shine (due to Max cap). But holding it for 2020 as I have spent the threshold for Annual fee waiver in current year.

        Need suggestions on
        1) Which one should i use as a back up for DCB?
        2) I don’t want to close SBI. Which SBI card should I swap prime with?

        Reply
      2. Mritunjay

        Thank you Prashant.
        Standard Chartered is technically free as they provide reward points worth joining fee. What is best way to use those points? How is the redemption of SC?

        Reply
    2. Sree

      Go for infinia/DCB depending upon your lifestyle. You can go for Amex MRCC/Plat travel as backup card

      Reply
      1. Shivi

        @Sree: I think you meant the other way around ~ Amex Plat depending on lifestyle & Infinia/DCB as backup!

        Reply
      2. Mritunjay

        Thank you Sree!
        I will go with DCB as getting Infinia is bit difficult. I feel amex has high fee. I mean not worth to get high return or may be I am not aware how to get the best return from amex. Any idea?
        Also, don’t you feel only DCB and Amex will get me into low acceptance situation?

        Reply
  92. Omkar D

    Hi Sid,
    First of all, thanks for all your blogs. I’ve been reading them since quite a lot of time now. Just needed your advice on below query:
    Currently I hold following cards:
    1. SBI SimplyClick
    2. Amazon pay ICICI
    3. ICICI platinum (use it only for 100rs off on BMS tickets)
    4. HSBC smart value (for HSBC specific offers)
    5. HDFC Diners ClubMiles LTF
    6. HDFC Infinia (Add-on to wife’s card with PP)

    I’m planning to go for Citi rewards and Flipkart axis card just to avail respective exclusive offers.
    Is there any other card you may suggest for me or any replacement or upgrade to existing cards.
    PS – my annual CTC is 4.5lpa.
    Regards,

    Reply
  93. Mayank

    Hi Sid,

    Can u please update the best credit card list in every 6 months? I have noticed that credit card industry in as a whole is changing very fast. So, yearly update of best credit cards list is not suitable. Some cards have devalued, some have removed benefits and some new cards are launched. Its just a query / suggestion.

    Love your website:)

    Reply

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