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Best Top 10 Travel Credit Cards In India 2020

Yes you can shop, earn rewards from your credit card and redeem during travel bookings!

by LilRoot Updated: 03 Sep, 2020, 09:35 IST
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Credit cards offer best rewards on travel booking like airline tickets and hotel stay or even insurance which can help you save a ton with the correct choice of card. The best way to choose the right card is to look at the eligibility criteria and the welcome bonus. The points earned on the card can be used to redeem a free ticket or buy vouchers depending on the type of card.

We will explore 10 best credit cards in India and its benefits below:

  1. American Express Platinum Travel

Annual fee: First Year Fee: Rs. 3,500 plus applicable taxes | Second Year onwards: Rs. 5,000 plus applicable taxes.

Sign-up bonus: Gives welcome bonus of 5,000 rewards points.

Rewards rate: Earn 1 Reward point on dining and travel purchases for every Rs. 50 spent except for spend on Fuel, Insurance, Utilities, Cash Transactions and EMI conversion at Point of Sale

Milestone Privileges: Spend Rs. 1.90 Lakhs in a year and get Travel Vouchers worth more than Rs. 7,700. Get a Taj Experiences E-Gift Card worth Rs. 10000 and get additional Travel Vouchers worth more than Rs. 11,800 when you spend Rs 4 Lakhs in a year.

Travel/Other Benefits:

  • Enjoy 4 complimentary visits per year to airport lounges across India.
  • Enjoy complimentary membership to Priority Pass worth $99
  • Enjoy exciting discounts of up to 20% every time you dine at select restaurants.
  • Fuel surcharge waiver at HPCL fuel outlets

Card Review:
Pros: Good for indigo frequent travellers as the milestone travel vouchers are usually Indigo vouchers mostly. Offers 8% reward rate if you manage to spend Rs 4 Lakhs in a year (highest reward rate amongst all best travel credit cards).

Cons: Milestone benefit is limited so no rewards on spending above Rs 4 Lakhs. The rewards are limited to Indigo and Taj vouchers.

2. HDFC Diners Club Black


Annual fees: First year fee: ₹ 10,000 + taxes
Welcome Benefits: Get free annual membership of Forbes Digital Subscription, Club Marriott, Zomato Gold, MakeMyTrip Double Black, Amazon Prime, Times Prime.
Milestone Privileges:
  • Annual Benefits: Free memberships will be renewed again on annual spend of Rs 8 Lakhs.
  • Monthly Milestone: Spend Rs 80000 per month and avail Ola Select membership or BookMyShow or TataCLiQ worth Rs. 500 each (any 2).


Rewards rate:

  • 10x reward points on Flights, Hotels, Bus, Rail, Instant Vouchers, Flipkart Store in SmartBuy, Amazon Store in SmartBuy.
  • Get 5 points for every spend of ₹ 150
  • Earn 2x points on weekend dining spends
  • Redeem reward points (at Rs 1 per point) for hotel and airline bookings and for AirMiles across British Airways Executive Club (Avios), Jet Airways (JPMiles), Singapore Airlines (KrisFlyer Miles), Club Vistara. (1 Reward Point = 1 AirMile)

Benefits:

  • Wellness Benefits: Get upto 30% off at leading salons, spas and gyms.
  • Unlimited Airport lounge access.
  • Air accident insurance cover worth Rs 2 crore
  • Medical emergency insurance cover of up to Rs 50 lakh
  • Travel insurance cover of Rs 55,000 for baggage delay or loss
  • Low Foreign Currency Markup fee of 1.99%

Card Review:
Pros: Unlimited free lounge access. A direct savings of 3.3% on all retail spends and 33% on 10X partners & Smartbuy.

3. SBI Elite Credit Card

Annual fee: Rs. 4,999

Sign-up bonus: Offers welcome e- Gift voucher worth Rs. 5,000

Rewards rate:

  • Get 5X Reward Points on Dining, Departmental stores and Grocery Spends (10 points on every Rs 100 spent).
  • Earn 2 Reward Points per Rs. 100 on all other spends, except fuel.
  • Pay your card outstanding with Reward Points. 4 Reward Points = Rs. 1

Milestone Privileges: Get 10,000 reward points on annual spend of Rs 3 Lakhs and 15,000 bonus reward points on achieving annual spends of Rs. 5 lakhs and 8 lakhs.

Travel/Other Benefits:

  • Lounge Access: Get 6 International lounge visits and 2 domestic airport lounge access.
  • Club Vistara Membership: Enjoy complimentary Club Vistara Silver membership and get 1 complimentary lounge access Voucher and 1 upgrade voucher. Earn 9 Club Vistara Points for every Rs. 100 spent on Vistara flights.
  • Trident Privilege Membership: Enjoy complimentary Trident Privilege Red Tier membership with 1000 welcome points on registration.
  • Complimentary Movie Tickets: Free 2 movie tickets worth Rs. 500 every month
  • 1% Fuel Surcharge Waiver across all petrol pumps.
  • 1.99% foreign currency mark-up
  • Save up to 10% on Hertz car rental and up to 35% on Avis Car Rental

Card Review:
Pros: Trident and Vistara membership benefits.

Cons: No welcome gift on renewal.


4. Yes Preferred Credit card

Annual fees: First Year fee of Rs 2,499 + Taxes

Sign-up bonus: Get 10000 reward points

Milestone Privileges:

  • Get 7,500 Reward Points on each renewal
  • Earn 20,000 Bonus Reward Points on spends of Rs 7.5 Lakhs

Rewards rate:

  • 8 points on every Rs 100 spent on Travel Agencies & Tour Operators, Domestic Airlines and Dining
  • 4 points on Rs 100 spent on all other categories

Travel/Other benefits:

  • Lounge Access: 4 International & 12 domestic airport lounge access
  • Life Insurance Cover of Rs 1 Cr for death due to Flight Accidents
  • Medical Insurance cover of Rs 25 Lakhs for emergency hospitalization when travelling overseas
  • Credit Shield cover in case of accidental death of Primary Cardmember

Card Review:
Pros: Best for spending on Foreign Currency Transaction (Foreign currency mark-up fee of 1.75% lowest as per industry standards).


5. SBI Air India Signature

Annual fees: First Year fee of Rs 4,999 + Taxes

Sign-up Bonus: 20,000 Reward points as welcome gift.

Milestone Privileges: Get 5000 reward points on renewal every year + Get upto Rs 1,00,000 points on annual retail spend.

Annual Retail Spend Bonus Reward Points Cumulative Bonus Reward Points
Rs. 5 lakh 20,000 20,000
Rs. 10 lakh 30,000
50,000
Rs. 20 lakh
50,000
1,00,000

Rewards rate:

  • Get 4 Reward points for every Rs. 100 spent.
  • Convert your Reward points into Air India miles. 1 Reward point = 1 Air India Air mile.
  • Earn upto 30 Reward Points for every Rs. 100 spent on Air India tickets booked through airindia.com, airindia mobile app.
  • 30 Reward Points when booked for self and 10 Reward Points when booked for others.

Travel/Other benefits:

  • Complimentary membership of the Air India Frequent Flyer program [Flying Returns]
  • Lounge access: 8 domestic airport lounge visits per year. For the International airport lounge, you have to pay $27 per visit using Priority Pass Program.

Card Review:
Pros: Reward rate is ~10% as AirIndia Miles. If you spend 20 Lakhs you will get 2 Lakhs worth of points which can be redeemed for a free air ticket. Eg: One way ticket from India to Europe, London and Paris, cost 25,000 miles in economy, 50,000 miles in business and 62,500 miles in first class.

Annual fees: Rs 3000 + Taxes

Sign-up Bonus: Get 10,000 Bonus miles

Milestone Privileges: Get 3200 miles on airline spends of Rs 6000 every month and 11600 miles on travel and other spends worth Rs 54000 every month.

Rewards rate:

  • Earn 10 Miles per Rs.100 when you book flight tickets and stay at the PremierMiles website.
  • Earn 10 Miles per Rs.100 spent on all airline transactions on any website and all airlines.
    Earn 4 Miles for every Rs.100 spent on all other transactions.


Travel/Other benefits:

  • Get additional 2 months on recharge of 12 months on Tata Sky account
  • 3 months Free Trial of Gaana Plus with Citi Cards.
  • Up to 20% savings across participating restaurants.
  • Air accident insurance cover of up to Rs 1 crore.
  • Earn miles for air tickets on card plus get regular FFP (Frequent Flyer Program) miles for flying that airline.
  • Get 1 Frequent Flyer Air Mile for every 2 Miles you transfer on Cathay Pacific, British Airways, Thai Airways, Malaysia Airlines, Eva Air, Etihad Airways, Singapore Airlines, Qatar Airways and Air India.
  • Enjoy 8 complimentary domestic lounge access.


    Card Review:

    Pros: No miles expiry. Best miles card with points transfer feature.

    Cons: No international lounge access.

    Annual fees: Rs 5000 + Taxes

    Sign-up Bonus: Get 10,000 welcome bonus JPMiles and a complimentary discount code on joining.

    Milestone Privileges: 5,000 renewal bonus JPMiles and a complimentary discount code every year on renewal.

    Rewards rate:

    • 5 JPMiles on every Rs.100 Domestic spends
    • 7 JPMiles on every Rs.100 International spends
    • 1 JPMile on insurance and utilities

    Travel/Other benefits:

    • Minimum 15% off on your dining bill at over 2,500 participating restaurants spread across 12 cities.
    • Enjoy complimentary excess baggage allowance of 10 kgs in Premiere and 5 kgs in Economy on Jet Airways.
    • Buy one ticket and get up to Rs 500 off on the second ticket, twice every month, through BookMyShow.
    • 4 complimentary rounds/ lessons of golf every month
    • Get 2 international airport lounge visits and 2 spa sessions at selected airports in India every year, through complimentary DragonPass membership.

    Card Review:
    Pros: Unlimited domestic lounge access.

    Cons: Jet airways ticket discount is of no use now as the airline is unfunctional at the moment.

    Annual fees: Rs. 1,500 + Taxes

    Sign-up Bonus: Get 12,500 reward points

    Milestone Privileges: Spend Rs. 2.50 Lakh in a year to get Yatra Vouchers worth double the reward points accumulated. Earn 3,000 reward points on payment of renewal fees.

    Rewards rate: Earn 10 Reward Points on every Rs. 200 spent across all categories.

    Travel/Other benefits:

    • Air accident cover Upto Rs 2.5 Cr
    • Loss of travel document cover upto USD 300
    • Delay of check-in baggage cover upto USD 300
    • Loss of check-in baggage cover upto USD 500
    • Upto 20% off at selected restaurants.
    • 8 free domestic lounge access in a year
    • Fuel surcharge waiver on min transaction of Rs 400

    Card Review:
    Pros: Reward Value Rate: 1% to 3% + voucher benefits.
    Cons: No renewal bonus points or benefits.

    9. Kotak Royale Signature Credit Card

    Annual fees: Joining fees: Nil | Annual fees - Rs 999 + Taxes

    Sign-up Bonus: Get 2 BookMyShow vouchers of Rs 200 each.

    Milestone Privileges:

    • 10,000 bonus reward points on spending Rs. 4 Lakhs.
    • 30,000 points on spending Rs. 8 Lakhs (not extra of 10,000 bonus).

    Rewards rate:

    • 4X reward points on every Rs. 150 spent across Hotels, Restaurants, Travel Agencies & Tour Operators, Package Tour Operators, Airlines and Air Carriers, International Spends.
    • 2X reward points on all other categories

    Travel/Other benefits:

    • Railway surcharge waiver of Rs 500 annually for transactions on www.irctc.co.in and on Indian Railways Booking Counters.
    • 8 complimentary domestic lounge access every year.
    • Maximum fuel surcharge waiver is Rs 3,500 per the calendar year on min transaction of Rs 500.

    Card Review:
    Pros: Railway surcharge waiver and on 8L spend, you get about 1.2% rewards rate which is good.

    Cons: No international lounge access and not much welcome bonus benefit. Eligibility criteria at 24 lacs per year is very high.

    10. SBI IRCTC Credit Card

    Annual fees: Joining Fee: Rs. 500 + taxes | Second Year onwards: Rs. 300 + taxes

    Sign-up Bonus: Get 350 activation bonus Reward Points and earn Rs 100 cashback on your first ATM cash withdrawal.

    Rewards rate: Buy tickets through irctc website for AC1, AC2. AC3 and AC CC and earn upto 10% Valueback as Reward points. Get 1 Reward point for every Rs. 125 spent on non-fuel retail purchases, including railway ticket purchases at irctc website

    Travel/Other benefits:

    • Save 1.8% transaction charges on railway ticket bookings on irctc website.
    • Enjoy 1% fuel surcharge across all petrol pumps on min transaction of Rs. 500

    Card Review:
    Pros: Save upto 11.8% on all train travel spends.
    Cons: Points can only be redeemed to buy tickets on IRCTC.

    Dimers feel free to share your experience of any card that helped you save extra or any suggestions in the comment section below

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