Best International Travel Credit Cards in India 2019

If you're an international traveler, you may favor a credit card with great rewards on travel bookings, overseas spend or perhaps both. We've sifted through all the options in the market to come up with our best picks for traveling abroad.

Best International Travel Credit Cards
Flexible TravelYatra SBI8 lounge visits/year, Rs. 8,250 Yatra vouchers
Jet AirwaysJP HDFC Diners ClubUnlimited global lounge, Jet Airways tickets
No FeeAxis Pride Signature1.6% back on all spend except fuel, lounge access
SecuredAxis Insta Easy2.4% international, Rs. 20,000 deposit
CashbackSC UltimateRs. 10,000 on MakeMyTrip, 3.33% all spend
OverseasRBL World Plus SupercardRs. 3,600-6,000 welcome gift, 3.6-6.0% international
Frequent FliersCiti PremierMiles4.5% on all air bookings, redeem on many airlines
Air IndiaAir India SBI Signature8 lounge visits/year, Rs. 11,250 in bonuses
MakeMyTripMakeMyTrip ICICI Bank SignatureRs. 4,000 in promotions, Rs 3,999 Airtel roaming pack
Lounge AccessHDFC Diners Club BlackUnlimited global lounge, Rs. 15,000 in bonuses
ICICI Bank Sapphiro Amex4 quarterly domestic lounge visits, 0.75% on travel
LuxuryCiti PrestigeUnlimited Priority Pass, buy 4 get 1 hotel night

Best Credit Card for Flexible International Travel Bookings: Yatra SBI Card

Consider this if you often make travel bookings with Yatra

Age Requirement None listed by issuer
Annual Income Requirement None listed by issuer
Bonuses
  • Welcome Gift: 7 Yatra vouchers totaling Rs. 8,250 (flights, hotels, holiday packages)

The Yatra SBI Card is the best credit card for international travel bookings for most people. The welcome gift of Rs. 8,250 in Yatra vouchers is the most valuable feature of this card, which includes Rs. 2,000 for international travel and Rs. 3,000 for international holidays. Every year, you also get 6 discounts of up to 20% off flight and hotel transactions, as well as two domestic MasterCard lounge visits quarterly. Although you'll receive good rupee value back of 1.5% from overseas transactions (6 points per Rs. 100 spent, 25% redemption rate for Yatra vouchers), the card has a standard 3.5% foreign currency transaction fee, so the net cost on international spend is 2%.

Outside of travel-related expenditures, you get good rupee value back of 1.5% on department and grocery stores, dining and movies/entertainment. Beyond those categories, you'll receive below-average value back of 0.25% (1 point per Rs. 100). Overall, if you book online enough with Yatra, this credit card will net you fantastic value primarily from using its discounts & rewards to significantly lower your yearly travel costs.

  • Annual Fee: Rs. 499 (beyond first year, waived on Rs. 100,000 annual spend)
  • Earn Rate: 6 points/Rs. 100 spent on department stores, grocery, dining, movies/entertainment, overseas; 1 point/Rs. 100 on other
  • Point Value: 1 Reward Point = Rs. 0.25 Yatra vouchers
  • Perks: 2 free domestic MasterCard lounge visits/quarter (23 lounges, 9 cities) valid till 4/1/19; air accident cover of Rs. 50 lakhs
  • FX Fee: 3.5%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions Rs. 500 – 3,000; max Rs. 100 waived/month
  • Annual Fee: Rs. 499 (beyond first year, waived on Rs. 100,000 annual spend)
  • Earn Rate: 6 points/Rs. 100 spent on department stores, grocery, dining, movies/entertainment, overseas; 1 point/Rs. 100 on other
  • Point Value: 1 Reward Point = Rs. 0.25 Yatra vouchers
  • Perks: 2 free domestic MasterCard lounge visits/quarter (23 lounges, 9 cities) valid till 4/1/19; air accident cover of Rs. 50 lakhs
  • FX Fee: 3.5%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions Rs. 500 – 3,000; max Rs. 100 waived/month

Best Credit Card for Flight Bookings & Overseas Spend: JetPrivilege HDFC Bank Diners Club Credit Card

Consider this if you want great value on your Jet Airways bookings and spend enough overseas

Age Requirement 21-60 (65 if self-employed)
Annual Income Requirement None listed by issuer
Bonuses
  • Welcome Gift: 1) 15,000 JPMiles (worth ~Rs. 6,750), 2) waiver of 1-way base fare Economy Class ticket, 3) Rs. 750 voucher for return ticket, 4) 15 JetPrivilege Tier Points upon first swipe > Rs. 50 and 5) an extra 15,000 JPMiles on Rs. 150,000 of spend within first 90 days
  • Renewal Bonus: 1) 10,000 JPMiles (worth ~Rs. 4,500), 2) waiver of one-way base fare Economy Class ticket, 3) Rs. 750 voucher for return ticket and 4) 5 JetPrivilege Tier Points

If you're a Jet Airways flyer, the JetPrivilege HDFC Diners Club Card is the best international travel card both for flight bookings and if you want value back from your overseas spend. On the flight-booking side, it has a great welcome gift and renewal bonus of 25,000 JPMiles (worth ~Rs. 11,250), 2 one-way base fare tickets and Rs. 1,500 in return tickets, the highest value source from the credit card. You'll also get an extra 15,000 JPMiles (~Rs. 6,750) if you spend Rs. 150,000 in the first 90 days, but most may find this difficult. On regular Jet Airways spend, you'll get 7.2% value back (24 JPMiles per Rs. 150; 1 mile = ~Rs. 0.45), and another 5% off base fare tickets.

The card earns a great rate of 5.3% in JPMiles (8 JPMiles per Rs. 150; 2.4% rupee value) on spend outside fuel. With only a 2% foreign currency transaction fee, one of the lowest rates in India, you'll net 0.40% value from overseas spend. Finally, you'll earn JetPrivilege Tier Points depending on your spending level and receive Diners Club Lounge access. In sum, if you’re a Jet Airways flier, you can't find a more valuable card out there for airfare and international transactions.

  • Annual Fee: Rs. 10,000 (first year), Rs. 5,000 (beyond first year)
  • Earn Rate: 8 JPMiles/Rs. 150 spent except fuel; 3X miles & 5% off Jet Airways base fare
  • Est. Point Value: 1 JPMile = Rs. 0.45
  • Perks: Diners Club Lounge access (600+ lounges globally); unlimited free golf (green fee waiver) ~20 courses in India, 40 worldwide; free golf lessons at select ranges in India; domestic airport premiere check-in & extra bag allowance; earn JP Tier Points; dining discounts
  • FX Fee: 2%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions Rs. 400 – 5,000; max Rs. 1,000 waived per month
  • Annual Fee: Rs. 10,000 (first year), Rs. 5,000 (beyond first year)
  • Earn Rate: 8 JPMiles/Rs. 150 spent except fuel; 3X miles & 5% off Jet Airways base fare
  • Est. Point Value: 1 JPMile = Rs. 0.45
  • Perks: Diners Club Lounge access (600+ lounges globally); unlimited free golf (green fee waiver) ~20 courses in India, 40 worldwide; free golf lessons at select ranges in India; domestic airport premiere check-in & extra bag allowance; earn JP Tier Points; dining discounts
  • FX Fee: 2%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions Rs. 400 – 5,000; max Rs. 1,000 waived per month

Best No-Fee Credit Card for International Travel: Axis Bank Pride Signature Credit Card

Consider this if you spend at least Rs. 40,000 annually on your card

Age Requirement 18-70
Annual Income Requirement None listed by issuer
Bonuses
  • Monthly Bonus: 100 points (Rs. 40 in Yatra vouchers) on spend of Rs. 5,000

The Axis Bank Pride Signature Card is the best no-annual fee credit card if you spend at least Rs. 40,000 yearly. To be clear, there is no fee charged in your first year, but there's technically a fee of Rs. 500 in subsequent years if you do not spend at least Rs. 40,000 (achievable for many consumers). Most of the card's value comes from rewards earned on general spend, with great 1.6% rupee value back on all card charges except fuel (8 point per Rs. 200 spent; 1 point = Rs. 0.40 Yatra vouchers), including travel bookings and overseas transactions. On the latter, the card's market-standard 3.5% foreign currency transaction fee will result in a net cost of 1.9% on overseas spend.

Among the card's perks, you'll receive 2 lounge visits per quarter across 5 major cities within India. If you're looking for a no-fee card to earn rewards on your travel spend, get this one as long as you can meet its Rs. 40,000 annual spend threshold.

  • Annual Fee: None 1st year; Rs. 500 beyond 1st year, waived on annual spend of Rs. 40,000
  • Earn Rate: 8 points per Rs. 200 spent except on fuel
  • Point Value: 1 point = Rs. 0.40 Yatra vouchers
  • Perks: Access to 10 lounges across 5 cities in India, 2 visits/quarter; dining benefits
  • FX Fee: 3.5%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions Rs. 400 – 4,000. Max Rs. 400 per month
  • Annual Fee: None 1st year; Rs. 500 beyond 1st year, waived on annual spend of Rs. 40,000
  • Earn Rate: 8 points per Rs. 200 spent except on fuel
  • Point Value: 1 point = Rs. 0.40 Yatra vouchers
  • Perks: Access to 10 lounges across 5 cities in India, 2 visits/quarter; dining benefits
  • FX Fee: 3.5%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions Rs. 400 – 4,000. Max Rs. 400 per month

Best Secured Credit Card for International Travel: Axis Bank Insta Easy Credit Card

Consider this if you want a card against fixed deposit that will earn travel rewards

Age Requirement None listed by issuer
Annual Income Requirement None listed by issuer
Bonuses
  • Welcome Gift: 100 points (Rs. 40 in Yatra vouchers) on first online transaction

Axis Bank's Insta Easy Credit Card is the best card out there to earn travel rewards while you require a secured credit card, geared toward people with nonexistent, limited or poor credit history. You'll need to put down a minimum fixed deposit of Rs. 20,000, but you won't be charged annual fees, and there are no age or income requirements. The card has a nominal welcome gift of 100 points, so the real value comes from everyday spend.

On domestic charges, you'll receive great 1.2% rupee value back, including on travel bookings (6 points per Rs. 200; 1 point = Rs. 0.40 in Yatra vouchers). You'll get 2.4% reward value back on international charges (12 points per Rs. 200), but the card does have a market-standard 3.5% foreign currency transaction fee, so overseas transactions will cost net 1.1%. Bottom line, if you want the best travel rewards you can get from a secured credit card, get the Insta Easy.

  • Minimum Fixed Deposit: Rs. 20,000
  • Earn Rate: 6 points per Rs. 200 spent on domestic transactions except on Fuel; 12 points per Rs. 200 spent on international transactions
  • Point Value: 1 Axis eDGE Reward Point = Rs. 0.40 Yatra Travel Vouchers
  • Perks: Axis Bank’s Dining Delights program
  • FX Fee: 3.5%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions Rs. 400 – 4,000; max Rs. 400 waived per month
  • Minimum Fixed Deposit: Rs. 20,000
  • No Fees
  • Earn Rate: 6 points per Rs. 200 spent on domestic transactions except on fuel; 12 points per Rs. 200 spent on international transactions
  • Point Value: 1 Axis eDGE Reward Point = Rs. 0.40 Yatra Travel Vouchers
  • Perks: Axis Bank’s Dining Delights program
  • FX Fee: 3.5%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions Rs. 400 – 4,000; max Rs. 400 waived per month

Best Cashback Card for Overseas Transactions: Standard Chartered Ultimate Card

Consider this if you can spend enough on the card to offset the annual fees

Age Requirement 21-65
Annual Income Requirement None listed by issuer
Bonuses
  • Welcome Gift: Up to Rs. 10,000 cashback on MakeMyTrip on tickets booked within 90 days of card issuance

Standard Chartered's Ultimate Card is the best in the market if you want to earn great rewards across all your spending categories, including overseas. It comes with a great welcome gift of up to Rs. 10,000 cashback on MakeMyTrip tickets booked in your first 90 days as a cardholder. Beyond this bonus, you'll earn best-in-market 3.33% rupee value back on general spend without exclusions (5 points per Rs. 150 spent; 1 point = Rs. 1 cashback). With its foreign currency transaction fee of 2% (one of the best), you'll still get an excellent 1.33% net value back on overseas transactions.

The card also comes with great perks, including 4 airport lounge visits per quarter under the Visa program, and high spenders will get a free monthly Priority Pass visit if you spend at least Rs. 20,000 per month. You'll also get 5% off duty free spend and free golf (including coaching) on a monthly basis. Overall, get this card if you want to earn great rewards across all spending categories, including on your international spend.

  • Annual Fee: Rs. 5,000
  • Reward Earn Rate: 5 points per Rs. 150 spent on all transactions; 5% cashback duty free spend
  • Point Value: 1 point = Rs. 1 cashback
  • Perks: Complimentary Priority Pass membership (USD 27/visit, waived once monthly if last month's spend > Rs. 20,000); Visa Lounge access (4 free visits/quarter, major airports in India); 2 free domestic golf games/month (1 free guest game/month), 1 free golf coaching session/month; air accident cover of Rs. 1 crore, emergency medical, bag delay, loss of bags/personal docs, hijacking and flight delay coverage
  • FX Fee: 2%
  • Annual Fee: Rs. 5,000
  • Reward Earn Rate: 5 points per Rs. 150 spent on all transactions; 5% cashback duty free spend
  • Point Value: 1 point = Rs. 1 cashback
  • Perks: Complimentary Priority Pass membership (USD 27/visit, waived once monthly if last month's spend > Rs. 20,000); Visa Lounge access (4 free visits/quarter, major airports in India); 2 free domestic golf games/month (1 free guest game/month), 1 free golf coaching session/month; air accident cover of Rs. 1 crore, emergency medical, bag delay, loss of bags/personal docs, hijacking and flight delay coverage
  • FX Fee: 2%

Best Value on Overseas Transactions: RBL World Plus Supercard

Consider this if spend enough to outweigh the relatively high annual fees

Age Requirement None listed by issuer
Annual Income Requirement None listed by issuer
Bonuses
  • Welcome Gift: 20,000 points (worth Rs. 3,600-6,000 depending on redemption option)
  • Anniversary Bonus: 20,000 points on Rs. 300,000 spend in a year, 20,000 additional points on Rs. 500,000 spend

RBL's World Plus Supercard is one of the best credit cards for international transactions. You'll earn 3.6-6.0% rupee value back on your overseas spend (and all dining spend), depending on your point redemption option (the higher end of the range is best-in-market for overseas value). With its market-standard foreign currency transaction charge of 3.5%, net overseas value will range from 0.10-2.50%, still top-of-market on the higher end. On all other spend (except fuel), you'll earn a middle-of-the-road 0.36-0.60% value back.

Regarding the card's bonuses, the 20,000 point welcome gift (worth Rs. 3,600-6,000) is great, but to make this card worth the fees (Rs. 4,999 each year), you must charge enough on it annually. Specifically, you'll receive an anniversary bonus of 20,000 points on Rs. 300,000 annual spend, and 40,000 total if you spend Rs. 500,000. Among its perks, the World Plus Supercard will provide 8 airport lounge visits per year (max 2/quarter). Additionally, you'll get a complimentary Priority Pass membership, but you'll have to pay USD 27 for each use. On the whole, this credit card is best for high spenders who want to maximize their return on overseas spend.

  • Annual Fee: Rs. 4,999
  • Reward Earn Rate: 20 points/Rs. 100 spent international and dining transactions (max 2,000 points/monthly per category), 2 points/Rs. 100 spent on all else (except fuel)
  • Point Value: 1 point = Rs. 0.18-0.30 depending on redemption option (travel, mobile recharge, shopping)
  • Perks: 8 free (max 2/quarter) domestic lounge visits/year in India; complimentary Priority Pass membership (USD 27/visit); dining/movie benefits
  • FX Fee: 3.5%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions Rs. 500-4,000
  • Annual Fee: Rs. 4,999
  • Reward Earn Rate: 20 points/Rs. 100 spent international and dining transactions (max 2,000 points/monthly per category), 2 points/Rs. 100 spent on all else (except fuel)
  • Point Value: 1 point = Rs. 0.18-0.30 depending on redemption option (travel, mobile recharge, shopping)
  • Perks: 8 free (max 2/quarter) domestic lounge visits/year in India; complimentary Priority Pass membership (USD 27/visit); dining/movie benefits
  • FX Fee: 3.5%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions Rs. 500-4,000

Best Flexible Airline Card for Frequent Fliers: Citi PremierMiles Credit Card

Consider this if you want maximum airline options and travel very frequently

Age Requirement None listed by issuer
Annual Income Requirement None listed by issuer
Bonuses
  • Welcome Gift: 10,000 miles (worth Rs. 4,500 in vouchers for online travel partners, e.g. Yatra or MakeMyTrip)
  • Renewal Bonus: 3,000 miles (worth Rs. 1,350 in vouchers)

The Citi PremierMiles Card is the best airline miles credit card on the market if you're a regular traveler and fly on multiple different carriers. No matter which airline you fly, you get great 4.5% rupee value back (10 miles per Rs. 100 spent), and you can flexibly redeem on travel partners like Yatra or MakeMyTrip (100 miles = Rs. 45). Upon sign-up, you get great value of 10,000 miles (worth about Rs. 4,500), and another 3,000 miles (~Rs. 1,350) each year on renewal. To round off the card's travel benefits, you'll get 6-8 airport lounge visits per quarter in India (depending on whether you get Visa or MasterCard). As an additional perk, you can get 15% off dining at certain restaurants.

For general spend, you'll earn great 1.8% rupee value back (4 miles per Rs. 100 spent) on all other transactions. With the card's standard 3.5% foreign currency fee, overseas spend will cost a net 1.7%. Notably, annual fees can be waived if you are a Citi Priority or Citigold client. Especially if you have (or can obtain) such status as a customer, get this for its high travel flexibility.

  • Annual Fee: Rs. 3,000. First year fee waived for Citi Priority clients. No fee for Citigold clients
  • Earn Rate: 10 Miles per Rs. 100 spent on airline transactions. 4 Miles per Rs. 100 spent on other
  • Point Value: 100 Miles = Rs. 45 on online travel partners (e.g. MakeMyTrip). Transfer to airlines' miles programs worth 50% less
  • Perks: Domestic lounge access (MC - 6 visits/quarter, 7 lounges across 5 cities; Visa - 8 visits/quarter, 10 lounges across 5 cities); 15% off certain restaurants
  • FX Fee: 3.5%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Indian Oil for transactions on Citi EDCs
  • Annual Fee: Rs. 3,000. First year fee waived for Citi Priority clients. No fee for Citigold clients
  • Earn Rate: 10 Miles per Rs. 100 spent on airline transactions. 4 Miles per Rs. 100 spent on other
  • Point Value: 100 Miles = Rs. 45 on online travel partners (e.g. MakeMyTrip). Transfer to airlines' miles programs worth 50% less
  • Perks: Domestic lounge access (MC - 6 visits/quarter, 7 lounges across 5 cities; Visa - 8 visits/quarter, 10 lounges across 5 cities); 15% off certain restaurants
  • FX Fee: 3.5%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Indian Oil for transactions on Citi EDCs

Best International Travel Card for Air India: Air India SBI Signature Credit Card

Consider this if you often fly Air India

Age Requirement 21-60
Annual Income Requirement None listed by issuer
Bonuses & Promotions
  • Signup bonus of 20,000 points - ₹ 9,000 when converted to cash (Covers fees for approximately two years).
  • By spending ₹ 2,000,000 cardholder receives 50,000 points, by spending ₹ 1,000,000 cardholder receives 30,000 and by spending ₹ 500,000 cardholder receives 20,000 points (Approximately ₹ 45,000 in total)
  • Renewal benefit of 5,000 reward points (₹ 2,250)

The Air India SBI Signature Card is the best international travel card for individuals who travel Air India frequently. The credit card's highest value source is its bonuses, including the 20,000 point welcome gift (~Rs. 9,000). Ultra-high spenders will additionally benefit from the card's anniversary gifts. On regular card usage, you'll earn a best-in-market 13.5% rupee value back on Air India bookings for yourself (30 points per Rs. 100 spent; 1 point = Rs. 0.45), and fantastic 4.5% rupee value back when you book for others (10 points per Rs.100).

On all other spend, you'll get great rupee value back of 1.8% (4 points per Rs. 100 spent). With the card's standard 3.5% foreign currency transaction surcharge, overseas spend will come at a net cost of 1.7%. Of the card's two lounge programs, the 8 domestic visits a year under the Visa program is the best. Finally, you'll also get tier upgrade benefits for Air India. In sum, if you're an Air India flyer, get this card for maximum travel rewards.

  • Annual Fee: Rs. 4,999
  • Earn Rate: 30 points per Rs. 100 spent on Air India for yourself; 10 points per Rs. 100 spent on Air India for others; 4 points per Rs. 100 on all other spend
  • Estimated Point Value: 1 point = 1 Air India mile = Rs. 0.45
  • Perks: Visa Domestic Lounge Program (8 free visits/year, max 2/quarter; lounges across 6 major cities), free Priority Pass membership (USD 27 charged/visit), Air India tier upgrade benefits
  • FX Fee: 3.5%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions Rs. 500 – 4,000; max Rs. 250 per month
  • Annual Fee: Rs. 4,999
  • Earn Rate: 30 points per Rs. 100 spent on Air India for yourself; 10 points per Rs. 100 spent on Air India for others; 4 points per Rs. 100 on all other spend
  • Estimated Point Value: 1 point = 1 Air India mile = Rs. 0.45
  • Perks: Visa Domestic Lounge Program (8 free visits/year, max 2/quarter; lounges across 6 major cities), free Priority Pass membership (USD 27 charged/visit), Air India tier upgrade benefits
  • FX Fee: 3.5%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions Rs. 500 – 4,000; max Rs. 250 per month

Best MakeMyTrip Card: MakeMyTrip ICICI Bank Signature Credit Card

Consider this if you are a traveller who prefers to book through MakeMyTrip

Age Requirement None listed by issuer
Annual Income Requirement None listed by issuer
Bonuses & Promotions
  • Welcome Gift: 10,000 Reward Points (worth Rs. 10,000)
  • Renewal Bonus: 5,000 Reward Points (worth Rs. 5,000); not applicable when renewal fee is waived (requires annual spend of Rs. 500,000)

The MakeMyTrip ICICI Bank Signature Credit Card is a great card for individuals who frequently book throughMakeMyTrip. For example, the MakeMyTrip ICICI Bank Signature Credit Card offers sign-up bonuses of Rs. 1,500 in My Cash to be used on the MakeMyTrip site and a Lemontree Hotel voucher of Rs. 2,500. The card also has a great promotion of Rs. 4,000 of My Cash each anniversary year once the cardholder surpasses certain spending thresholds. The cardholder will also be enrolled into an invitation only MMTDOUBLEBLACK membership. The cardholder will also receive an MMTBlack membership as a way to receive points through spending, the details for MMTBLACK milestones are displayed in the table below.

Furthermore, The MakeMyTrip ICICI Signature Card has an elevated rewards rate on travel bookings made on MakeMyTrip at 2% (4 points per Rs. 200) for hotel and holiday spending and 1% (2 points per Rs. 200, 1 point = Rs. 1) for flight bookings. Additionally, for overseas spending the the card offers an elevated rewards rate of 0.75% (1.5 points per Rs. 200, 1 point = Rs. 1). However, this card offers a relatively low rewards rate of 0.63% (1.25 point per Rs. 200, 1 point = Rs. 1) on all other spending categories outside of travel bookings and overseas spending. As a result, this card is best for those that often use MakeMyTrip to book travel.

  • Joining Fee: Rs. 2,500
  • Annual Fee: No Fee
  • Earn Rate: 1.25 point per Rs. 200 all spending, 4 points per Rs. 200 for hotel and holiday spending on MakeMyTrip, 2 points per Rs. 200 for flight bookings on MakeMyTrip, 1.5 points per Rs. 200 for spends outside MakeMyTrip
  • Point Value: 1 point = Rs. 1
  • Travel: Cardholder will receive a Lemon Tree Hotels voucher worth Rs 2,500 as a welcome gift, up to 2 airport lounge visits per quarter, additional international roaming pack up to Rs 3,999 with Airtel
  • MMTBLACK and MMTDOUBLEBLACK: MMTBLACK offers My Cash rewards as cardholder spending increases, MMTDOUBLEBLACK allows the cardholder to cancel 2 domestic flights and 2 domestic hotels. This is provided for one year but to renew there will be a cost of Rs. 1,499
  • Ola: Every 6th ride per month will be free on OLA
  • Joining Fee: Rs. 2,500
  • Annual Fee: No Fee
  • Earn Rate: 1.25 point per Rs. 200 all spending, 4 points per Rs. 200 for hotel and holiday spending on MakeMyTrip, 2 points per Rs. 200 for flight bookings on MakeMyTrip, 1.5 points per Rs. 200 for spends outside MakeMyTrip
  • Point Value: 1 point = Rs. 1
  • Travel: Cardholder will receive a Lemon Tree Hotels voucher worth Rs 2,500 as a welcome gift, up to 2 airport lounge visits per quarter, additional international roaming pack up to Rs 3,999 with Airtel
  • MMTBLACK and MMTDOUBLEBLACK: MMTBLACK offers My Cash rewards as cardholder spending increases, MMTDOUBLEBLACK allows the cardholder to cancel 2 domestic flights and 2 domestic hotels. This is provided for one year but to renew there will be a cost of Rs. 1,499
  • Ola: Every 6th ride per month will be free on OLA
SpendEarn
₹ 20,000₹ 500 My Cash
₹ 50,000₹ 1,250 My Cash
₹ 1,000,000₹ 1,500 My Cash
₹ 2,000,000₹ 3,000 My Cash
₹ 3,000,000₹ 3,750 My Cash
₹ 5,000,000₹ 15,000 My Cash
SpendEarn
₹ 20,000₹ 500 My Cash
₹ 50,000₹ 1,250 My Cash
₹ 1,000,000₹ 1,500 My Cash
₹ 2,000,000₹ 3,000 My Cash
₹ 3,000,000₹ 3,750 My Cash
₹ 5,000,000₹ 15,000 My Cash

Credit Cards for Airport Lounge Access

Depending on your income and preference for credit card perks, we've selected two different lounge access credit cards from which you could choose for international travel. These cards will help enhance the overall travel experience with added comfort for individuals looking for lounge access.

Premium Lounge Access: HDFC Diners Club Black Card

Consider this if you make at least Rs. 2,100,000 per year

Age Requirement 21-60 (65 if self-employed)
Annual Income Requirement Rs. 2,100,000
Bonuses
  • Welcome Gift: 10,000 Reward Points (worth Rs. 10,000)
  • Renewal Bonus: 5,000 Reward Points (worth Rs. 5,000); not applicable when renewal fee is waived (requires annual spend of Rs. 500,000)

The HDFC Diners Club Black Card is one of the most profitable credit cards for high spenders, but does require a high minimum annual income of Rs. 2,100,000. This credit card offers great value from both its bonuses and earn on spend, with the former equating to Rs. 15,000 in welcome and renewal gifts. On all retail spend except fuel, you'll earn a top rate of 3.33% rupee value back (5 points per Rs. 150; 1 point = Rs. 1 in travel rewards). With only a 2% foreign currency transaction surcharge, overseas spend will net you 1.33% value back, one of the best rates in India.

The card's fantastic perks include Diners Club Lounge unlimited access and six complimentary golf games (green fee waiver) each quarter. You must be able to meet the income requirement, but if you can this is one of the best credit cards for travel perks on the market.

  • Annual Fee: Rs. 10,000 first year; Rs. 5,000 beyond (waived on annual spend of Rs. 500,000)
  • Earn Rate: 5 points/Rs. 150 retail spend except fuel
  • FX Fee: 2.0%
  • Point Value: 1 point = Rs. 1 on HDFC Diners Club travel portal
  • Perks: Diners Club Lounge (free access to 850+ lounges); 6 free green fee waivers/quarter at 20 courses in India & 40 worldwide; air accident cover Rs. 2 crore; emergency medical expense cover; baggage delay cover
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions Rs. 400–5,000, max Rs. 1,000/month
  • Annual Fee: Rs. 10,000 first year; Rs. 5,000 beyond (waived on annual spend of Rs. 500,000)
  • Earn Rate: 5 points/Rs. 150 retail spend except fuel
  • FX Fee: 2.0%
  • Point Value: 1 point = Rs. 1 on HDFC Diners Club travel portal
  • Perks: Diners Club Lounge (free access to 850+ lounges); 6 free green fee waivers/quarter at 20 courses in India & 40 worldwide; air accident cover Rs. 2 crore; emergency medical expense cover; baggage delay cover
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions Rs. 400–5,000, max Rs. 1,000/month

Great Lounge Access: ICICI Bank Sapphiro American Express Credit Card

Consider this if you are interested in a card with lounge access and great travel perks, without a high annual salary

Age Requirement None listed by issuer
Annual Income Requirement None listed by issuer
Bonuses & Promotions
  • 4,000 PAYBACK Points on spending ₹ 4,00,000 on your card and 2,000 PAYBACK Points each time you cross ₹ 100,000 spend thereafter in an anniversary year; maximum of 20,000 PAYBACK Points per year, get up to 20,000 PAYBACK points every anniversary year

The ICICI Bank American Express Sapphiro Card is another great choice for individuals looking for lounge access. Unlike the HDFC Diners Club Black Card, the ICICI Bank Sapphiro American Express Card is easier to attain, as its joining fee (Rs. 6,500) is half that of the HDFC card. While the ICICI Bank Sapphiro Card's promotions are not quite as strong as the HDFC card, it has some great benefits. For example, the Sapphiro card offers 2 international airport lounge visits per year. Additionally, the cardholder receives a quarterly perk of 4 domestic lounge visits along with 2 domestic airport spa visits per calendar year. All of this is received through the DreamFolks DragonPass Lounge Access Programme.

Additionally, the ICICI Bank Sapphiro American Express Credit Card also offers 50% more in rewards than its MasterCard counterpart. Finally, the card also offers both entertainment and air travel coverages listed below for your reference.

  • Joining Fee: Rs. 6,500
  • Annual Fee: Rs. 3,500 (This can be waived if the cardholder reaches annual spends of Rs. 600,000)
  • Earn Rate: 3 points per Rs. 100 on all spends (except overseas spending and utilities), 6 points per Rs. 100 on overseas spending, 1 point per Rs. 100 on utility spending
  • Point Value: 1 Reward Point = Rs. 0.25
  • Movies: With the purchase of one movie ticket the cardholder can get up to Rs. 500 off of a second ticket on BookMyShow, twice every month
  • Dining: A minimum of 15% savings on dining at over 2,500 restaurants across the nation through the Culinary Treats Programme
  • Insurance: Offers air accident insurance up to Rs. 3,000,000, air accident insurance up to Rs. 3 crore, baggage insurance up to Rs. 25,000, loss of travel documents $500, loss of checked baggage $1,200, delay receipt of checked baggage $300 in excess of 12 hours, missing flight due to trans-shipment $300, plane hijacking $250 per hour of up to a maximum of 12 hours, delay in flight coverage of $250 over 12 hours
  • Joining Fee: Rs. 6,500
  • Annual Fee: Rs. 3,500 (This can be waived if the cardholder reaches annual spends of Rs. 600,000)
  • Earn Rate: 3 points per Rs. 100 on all spends(except overseas spending and utilities), 6 points per Rs. 100 on overseas spending, 1 point per Rs. 100 on utility spending
  • Point Value: 1 Reward Point = Rs. 0.25
  • Movies: With the purchase of one movie ticket the cardholder can get up to Rs. 500 off of a second ticket on BookMyShow, twice every month
  • Dining: A minimum of 15% savings on dining at over 2,500 restaurants across the nation through the Culinary Treats Programme
  • Insurance: Offers air accident insurance up to Rs. 3,000,000, air accident insurance up to Rs. 3 crore, baggage insurance up to Rs. 25,000, loss of travel documents $500, loss of checked baggage $1,200, delay receipt of checked baggage $300 in excess of 12 hours, missing flight due to trans-shipment $300, plane hijacking $250 per hour of up to a maximum of 12 hours, delay in flight coverage of $250 over 12 hours

Best luxury Perks Card: Citi Prestige Credit Card

Consider this if you have Citigold Private status or you're a very high spender

Age Requirement None listed by issuer
Annual Income Requirement None listed by issuer
Bonuses
  • Welcome Gift / Renewal Bonus: 10,000 air miles (worth about Rs. 4,500) and vouchers worth Rs. 10,000 from Taj Group or ITC Hotels

The Citi Prestige Card has the most lucrative perks out there, but you have to be a very high spender or have Citigold Private status for the credit card's monetary value to outweigh the annual fees. The fantastic perks include unlimited Priority Pass, stay 4 nights/get 1 free at any hotel in the world and great golf benefits. Monetarily, most of the card's value comes from its annual bonuses of ~Rs. 14,500 in rupee value (10,000 miles & Rs. 10,000 in Taj/ITC vouchers).

However, it also has great value back of 1.8% on domestic card charges (1 point per Rs. 100 spent) and 3.6% value back on overseas charges (2 points per Rs. 100 spent). The market-standard 3.5% foreign currency transaction fee will bring the net value on overseas spend down to 0.10%, but that's still better than most cards, which have a net cost to the consumer. In all, if you spend enough on your credit card annually or have Citigold Private status and want top perks, choose the Citi Prestige.

  • Annual Fee: Rs. 20,000 - waived for Citigold Private (account > Rs. 5 lakhs)
  • Earn Rate: 1 point/Rs. 100 spent in India, 2 points/Rs. 100 overseas
  • Point Value: 1 point = 4 miles (~Rs. 1.8) on 14 major airlines
  • Perks: Unlimited free Priority Pass; stay 4 get 1 night at any hotel; 1 year Taj Epicure Plus/InnerCircle Silver; 3 free green fees; 4 free golf rounds & lessons each year at 15 clubs; air accident cover Rs. 5 crores; overseas medical insurance; emergency cash
  • FX Fee: 3.5%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions at Indian Oil on Citi EDCs
  • Annual Fee: Rs. 20,000 - waived for Citigold Private (account > Rs. 5 lakhs)
  • Earn Rate: 1 point/Rs. 100 spent in India, 2 points/Rs. 100 overseas
  • Point Value: 1 point = 4 miles (~Rs. 1.8) on 14 major airlines
  • Perks: Unlimited free Priority Pass; stay 4 get 1 night at any hotel; 1 year Taj Epicure Plus/InnerCircle Silver; 3 free green fees; 4 free golf rounds & lessons each year at 15 clubs; air accident cover Rs. 5 crores; overseas medical insurance; emergency cash
  • FX Fee: 3.5%
  • Fuel Surcharge Waiver: Transactions at Indian Oil on Citi EDCs