HDFC Bank Regalia First Credit Card Review (2018)

By | September 13, 2018

HDFC Bank has been very successful with their premium offering Regalia Credit Card, so much so that everyone wants it. Earlier HDFC Bank used to issue Allmiles credit card for those who’re not eligible for the Regalia. But HDFC recently decided to stop issuing Allmiles card, probably because it was run by a different loyalty partner.

So that’s how HDFC Regalia First came into existence – as a good replacement for Allmiles credit card. Note that this is the Regalia First and do-not get confused with the original Regalia, which is one step above this card.

  • Joining/Annual Fee: 1,000 INR (But you can get it for free mostly)

HDFC Regalia First Credit Card (Visa)

Reward Points

Default Reward Rate

  • 1 Reward Point = 0.30 INR (when redeemed on regalia portal)
  • 4 RP for every 150 INR Retail Spends
  • Reward Rate: ~0.8%

Spend Based Milestones

  • Earn 5,000 Reward Points on annual spends of Rs. 3,00,000 or more in each anniversary year
  • Earn 7,500 Reward Points on annual spends of Rs. 6,00,000 or more in each anniversary year
  • Fulfilment: After completion of the card anniversary year.

So if you’re able to spend 6 Lakhs in a year, you can get reward rate as good as 1.2%  – which is pretty good for a card of this range.

5X/10X Offers

Every now and then HDFC runs offers with various merchant to give you 2x/5x/10x of the regular points which multiplies the reward rate so well. Hence, lookout for the offers every now & then.

Redemption

All the above reward rate that i’ve mentioned is possible to achieve only when you redeem the points for travel bookings (flights/hotels). If you prefer to redeem your points for shopping or other vouchers from the catalog, you’ll end up loosing a lot.

Redemptions are easy and I’ve myself used the original Regalia Reward Points to book a trip to Vietnam – typically saving 25,000 INR using points.

Lounge Access

Domestic

  • Access Via: Visa Signature/Master Card
  • Complimentary Limits: 8
  • Limits Reset: Every Calendar Year

Note that most of the Visa/MC limits are set to every quarter, but with Regalia range of cards its an yearly limit, which is great indeed.

International

  • Access Via: Priority Pass
  • Complimentary Limits: 3 (shared between Primary & Add-on cards)
  • Limits Reset: Every Calendar Year

If you would like to check the remaining visits left on your card at any point of time, you need to check with Priority Pass directly (pp@prioritypass.com.hk) about the visits done on your PP card. Just deduct that # from your actual limit and you’ll get the remaining limits on your PP card.

Caution: Any visits made in domestic lounges or visits made above the limits at Intl Lounges with attract $32 fee per visit.

Other Benefits

  • Foreign Exchange Markup fee: 2% + GST
  • Credit Shield: 5 Lakhs

How to Apply

  • New Application: >7.2 Lakh Annual Income (Branch/Online)
  • HDFC Classic Banking: If you’re a Classic Customer for >6 months with good Balance/AQB, you’ve higher chances to get Regalia First if above condition is not met.
  • Upgrade: Limits above 1.5 Lakh on existing HDFC card (Moneyback) with good spends would help.

That aside, most of the salary account holders are given HDFC Regalia First even if you don’t meet the above eligibility criteria, provided your company is banking with HDFC.

Competitors

Regalia is a Semi-premium credit card – a not so popular segment in credit card industry but HDFC is giving Premium feel even for non-premium customers and that’s how HDFC is killing the competition. Cards with similar reward rate are as below,

Bottomline

HDFC Bank is certainly doing a great thing by introducing Premium benefits to regular customers. Its also in line with the current generation’s expectation to meet their growing travel needs. And not to forget, this is not the card to hold, but the path to get the original Regalia – the actual premium credit card.

  • Cardexpert Rating: 4/5 

Whats your take on HDFC bank Regalia First Credit Card? Feel free to share your thoughts in comments below.

Author: Siddharth

A Credit Card freak minting reward points and cashback for years, started adding Airmiles in recent times. Obsessed with aviation, airport lounges and luxury travel at affordable cost.

31 thoughts on “HDFC Bank Regalia First Credit Card Review (2018)

  1. Ramesh Padmanban

    Hi Sidharth, Nice blog with lot of information. Really helped to learn lot of credit card tricks. I am also holding Regalia first. But I think the reward point is equivalent to 30 paise and not 40 paise. Can you please reconfirm ?

    Reply
    1. Siddharth Post author

      Ramesh,
      You’re right. I’ve updated the numbers. I’m still outdated on these cards 😉

      Reply
  2. Mickey

    I’m having a hard time trying to upgrade my Money back to Regalia First. I have an existing limit of 1.5 and spends of 3 lakhs so far this year.

    You think I should escalate to Nodal O?

    In fact I even meet the ITR requirements comfortably + CIBIL.

    Reply
    1. Swetank

      Easy way….ask them to deactivate your moneyback card. May be they can offer you upgrade at that time.
      If not, then also go for cancellation of card and apply for credit card through Hdfc website. You will get a call within 24 hours.
      I am sure they will approve you instantly for regalia first and maybe REGALIA directly. Just provide them your documents and card will be at your place within two to three week. 👍🙏

      Reply
      1. Mickey

        Swetank – what is the difference between deactivation and cancellation? Aren’t they the same thing? Not sure if such tricks would work with HDFC, they are too smart🤔

        Reply
    2. Abhishek Roy

      How have you approached them for the upgrade? Through th Relationship Manager/Branch People?

      Reply
      1. Mickey

        Abhishek – first on call centre and then by email to customer care. I don’t have any a/c with them so no RM.

        Reply
        1. Abhishek Roy

          Don’t do that. Simply send your ITR/Salary Slips for 2 month with an upgrade form where you have marked lifetime free option for regalia first by taking either add on card or smartpay and send it to Chennai Address directly.

          Reply
          1. Saroj

            I also followed this process only and Got My Regalia First within one week.They didn’t increase my CL. It was same as Moneyback card(2.3 L)

  3. Himanshu

    hey,
    I have R.First
    Spends on electricity bills incur any additional charges? On paying postpaid/prepaid recharges gives reward points?
    can i pay through smartpay? Any benefits?

    Reply
    1. Prashant Gupta

      Any payments through wallet will not get you points. You can pay directly on individual sites for points. Smartpay does not have any offer but payzapp has from time to time.

      Reply
  4. Mayank Airen

    Hi Siddarth
    I daily look up on this site for any new article/blogs. I share similar traits with you when it comes to using right credit card to gain maximum benefit.
    I am holding 2 HDFC lifetime free credit cards. One is Regalia First(upgraded from Superia) and Diners Premium(upgraded from Diners Rewards). The combined limit of both the cards is 80K. This is the same inspite that my salary has increased multifold . I had in past applied for limit enhancement. Can you please suggest me how should I go about it. Is holding 2 cards a restriction for limit enhancement.
    Please guide.

    Reply
    1. Himanshu

      Hey Mayank,

      How did you got 2 cards from HDFC? I heard only in few cases due to high NRV.

      My experience with HDFC. I got R. First two years back. With good spends i finally manage to get pre-approved offer. Limit got extended to 4X. And now 2 months back again got offer limit increased to 50%.

      1) Stay within 30% all the time
      2) Increase your spends

      If that not works take help of RM/BM or send docs to chennai.

      Reply
  5. Mickey

    Do LE or card upgrade request be put as Hard/ soft inquiry on CIBIL? Does it affect credit score if denied?

    Reply
  6. Himanshu

    @Mickey

    I don’t see HDFC doing cibil enquiry on LE. 4 months back my limit got upgraded. No enquiry done by HDFC

    Reply
  7. Mickey

    What is the difference between Regalia First and Regalia First Business?

    Any difference in benefits/ rewards?

    Reply
  8. Ankit

    No Cibil inquiry in HDFC for LE even My friend got a Hdfc Solitaire Women Credit Card without cibil check and No income documents. (Based on Preferred Savings account)

    Reply
  9. Strydon

    What card would be best for following usage :
    1. International travel
    2. Movie tickets
    3. IRCTC
    4. Groceries and online shopping.
    5. Fuel
    Is there a “one card to rule them all ?”

    Reply
  10. Mickey

    How to make the Regalia First LTF?

    HDFC upgraded me but I didn’t download the form and send it to Chennai, so it is not LTF

    Anyone know?

    Reply
  11. Mickey

    Believe me –

    HDFC card phone CC is the worst ever.. all are trainees, they have absolutely no idea even about basic queries.

    Reply
  12. Mickey

    Himanshu –

    How can one increase spends and stay within 30% at the same time?

    Reply
    1. Himanshu

      Spend on card and pay within generation date. This tip is given by sid and many others in every blog.

      Better to read all the comments/discussions. I have gathered so much knowledge about cards.

      Thank you very much sid.

      Reply
  13. ST Ali

    I am in a fuss with regards to Regalia First Reward points…

    My card was deactivated citing KYC requirement… I’d accumulated 37757 points on it & Never got the notification in any of my card statement when they will be expiring. Traditionally HDFC card statement mentions how many points are expiring in 60 days & also 30 days…

    Once KYC was completed & card reactivated three things happened with the card

    1) It stopped working for Online transaction requiring VBV (Error showing my mobile no. & email is not registered with bank post KYC)
    2) My cash advance limit is now ZERO
    3) My reward point balance is now ZERO

    After complaining regarding online transaction block repeatedly they finally corrected the VBV transaction after 1.5 months

    But my cash advance limit & Reward points are still ZERO..

    What can be done now with reward points.. Cash advance is not important to me since I never used it int he past???

    PS.
    I never asked for card up-gradation ever & it was always given to me by HDFC at each renewal + I’ve a credit score of 859, can it help in any way ??

    Reply
  14. Anitha

    Hi Siddharth

    After a lot of researching I went for an upgrade from Solitaire to HDFC Regalia First card 2 months ago. The application process and issue of the card was a nightmare and I would simply call it a bad experience. Customer care is pathetic considering I have had a HDFC card all along(7 years to be precise) and having been their customer. So much that I made up my mind to cancel the card and go for a SBI card. But this article really made me change my mind and give the card a chance to prove its worth rather than decide based on people who handled the application process. Really well written article, gave me the confidence to stick to my Regalia First Card.

    Thank you

    Reply
    1. Mickey

      Anitha – if you scroll up 3 answers you will see that I have written that HDFC CC is the worst.

      Even on email.

      Most issues have to be resolved only after escalation to Nodal Officer, who are in fact quite good

      Reply
      1. Karthik

        HDFC is the largest credit card issuers in India so they don’t generally care about their customers.

        Reply
  15. Mickey

    ST Ali – can you tell us more about this KYC deactivation thing? What was the problem exactly, and didn’t HDFC ask you or warn you to provide details?

    Deactivation would be an extreme last step I thought?

    Reply
    1. ST Ali

      Mickey – They did sent mailer for KYC but they never mentioned the consequences if I did not submit on time… I missed the deadline since I was out of station. I’ve been a customer since last 14 years & did 100% timely payment. What i am unable to understand is how 100% of points would expire together… It not like I did only one transaction two years ago..

      Reply

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