11 Most Popular Credit Cards for Salaried Individuals

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You can’t deny the importance of a credit card, especially if you’re a working individual. 

Your credit card is a friend who manages your monthly expenses smartly. It’s a buddy who lends you money when you are short. 

More than anything, it is a well-wisher who showers special privileges and free goodies every so often.

There’s been a spike in credit card users in India lately, touching 52 million in 2019. However, getting a credit card can be overwhelming for salaried individuals because of the sheer number of options available in the market. 

We list 10 popular credit cards so that by the end of this article, you can choose one that best suits your needs. Let’s get straight into it.

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1. American Express Membership Reward Credit Card

For most salaried individuals, Amex is an aspirational card. To avail of this card, you need to have an income of at least ₹6 lakhs per annum.

If you get the card using a referral link, the joining fee of ₹1000 is waived off. The annual fee is ₹1500 from the second year, which you won’t have to pay if you spend more than ₹1,50,000. If your expenditure exceeds ₹90,000, the fee gets slashed to ₹750. 

If you get the card from the bank, the renewal fee is ₹0 if you spend more than ₹1,50,000 and ₹2250 if you spend more than ₹90,000 in a year. Otherwise, you will have to pay ₹4500.

Here are the benefits.

  • For every ₹4 that you spend, you get a reward point of ₹1. You can accumulate 1000 bonus points using this card in a month.
  • For your expenses on fuel, insurance, utilities, and cash transactions, you get a reward point of ₹1 for every ₹50 that you spend.
  • Moreover, the card offers a discount of 20% at the partner restaurants, zero lost card liability, and free card replacement benefits.

2. HDFC Bank Regalia Credit Card

You can get this popular credit card if you have a minimum annual income of ₹12 lakh.

This card comes with a joining and renewal fee of ₹2500. However, it compensates you by giving 2500 reward points worth ₹1250. There is no renewal fee if you spend at least ₹3 lakhs in a year.

Let’s go through its benefits very briefly.

  • Get 4 reward points for every ₹150 that you spend.
  • Each reward point equals to ₹0.5 if you use the credit card to book hotels or tickets from a registered portal.
  • The reward points become ₹0.2 if you redeem the points for cash or the reward catalog.
  • You can travel the world by converting your reward points to AirMiles at Jet Airways or Singapore Airlines.
  • You get complimentary lounge accesses at all airports.
  • If you spend ₹75,000 in the first 90 days, you get free Zomato Gold membership for a year.
  • You get 15,000 reward points if you spend at least ₹8,00,000 in a year. For spending ₹5,00,000, you get 10,000 reward points.

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3. SBI SimplyClick Credit Card

This card is your best bet if you are a frequent online shopper.

To get this card, you need to have a monthly income of at least ₹30,000 per month. Plus, you’re exempt from the joining and renewal fee of ₹500 if you spend ₹1 lakh in a year.

Here’s what else the card has to offer you:

  • It offers an Amazon welcome voucher worth ₹500.
  • You receive Cleartrip vouchers worth ₹2000 for spending ₹1 lakh in a year.
  • You earn 10 reward points per ₹100 on online spending with exclusive partners – Amazon, BookMyShow, Cleartrip, Lenskart, Netmeds, Rentomojo, and UrbanClap.
  • For all other online transactions, you earn 5 Reward Points per ₹100.
  • For all offline spends, you get 1 reward point for every ₹100.

4. SBI Prime Credit Card

The card comes with a joining and renewal fee of ₹3000 per year. However, it also gives you a welcome gift of the same amount. Most notably, the renewal fee is nil if you spend ₹3 lakh in a year.

The reward points structure consists of three types of reward points – regular, milestone, and accelerated. Here is how they work.

  • For all your regular expenses, you get 2 reward points per ₹100 that you spend.
  • For milestone expenses, you get ₹1000 Pizza Hut e-voucher (every quarter) if you spend ₹50,000. For more than ₹5 lakh, you get vouchers worth ₹7000 from Yatra or Pantaloons.
  • The accelerated reward system gives you 20 points per ₹100 that you spend. The card makes your birthday special by giving you the same benefit.
  • Additionally, you earn 15 points for ₹100 spent at Big Basket and 10 points spent on dining, groceries, departmental stores, and movies.
  • You get free access to international and domestic lounges.
  • The card also brings other benefits such as Club Vistara Silver membership, BookMyShow benefit, and Trident Privilege Red Tier membership.

5. HSBC Visa Platinum Credit Card

Get a lock on your expenses with a credit card that doesn’t require a joining or renewal fee. Moreover, you get a voucher worth ₹2000 on the first transaction. Let’s look at the other features and benefits of this popular card.

  • For most transactions, the add-on card is treated as a separate card.
  • You get a cashback of up to ₹2500 for spending at least ₹10,000 in the first 90 days.
  • You get six BookMyShow vouchers in a year worth ₹500 on spending over ₹50,000 in a month.
  • The card gets a cashback of ₹10,000 for booking your international flight tickets on MakeMyTrip on Sundays. Additionally, it also gives a 30% discount on Treebo hotels.
  • You get a 25% discount up to ₹150 on your Swiggy orders.
  • Best of all, you get 3X points on dining, hotels, and telecom in the first year. If you spend between ₹4 lakh and ₹10 lakh, your rewards increase to 5X.
  • You can also transfer your points to AirMiles and hotel miles.

6. Indian Oil Citi Platinum Credit Card

While you can’t ditch your fuel costs entirely, this card helps you optimize your spends. The only rider is to visit an Indian Oil fuel station. This card gets you 5% returns on your fuel spends: 2.5% surcharge waiver and 2.5% cashback.

  • It comes at a joining fee of ₹1000, and you won’t have to pay any renewal fee as long as you spend ₹30,000 in a year.
  • For every ₹150 that you spend on fuel, you earn 4 turbo points. Every single turbo point equals ₹1 worth of fuel.
  • For groceries and supermarket shopping, you earn 2 turbo points per ₹150 spent. In this case, there is a ₹5000 cap on your expenses.

7. ICICI Amazon Pay Credit Card

If you rely on Amazon extensively for your shopping, this card is perfect for you. Prime members can enjoy even more benefits, and it comes without an annual or renewal fee. 

Here’s a quick look at the card’s other features.

  • If you are a prime member, you get 5% cashback on all Amazon purchases. For non-prime members, the cashback is 3%.
  • You get 2% cashback on transactions with Amazon Pay partner merchants. For all other purchases, you get 1% cashback.
  • The card has a tie-up with over 2500 restaurants where you can enjoy a discount of 15%.
  • This card also gives a 1% fuel surcharge waiver, regardless of the fuel station.

8. Citibank Cashback Credit Card

If you are not the one to track reward points, here is the best alternative for you. This Citibank credit card gives direct cashback for all your expenses. 

  • For the amount that you spend on movie tickets, telephone, and other utility payments, you get 5% cashback. For all other spends, you get 0.5% cashback.
  • You can get the card with a joining and annual fee of ₹500.
  • Moreover, Citibank has a tie-up with several restaurants where you get a discount of 15%.
  • Lastly, the card allows you to convert your big-ticket expenses into easy EMIs.

9. Axis Bank Insta Credit Card

If you love the feeling of using a secured credit card on your travels, this card gives you good benefits and even ends up building a good credit score. 

Here are some features of this card that are worthy of discussion.

  • You can get it against a fixed deposit of a minimum of ₹20,000.
  • The credit card gets you 6 reward points for every ₹200 that you spend in the domestic market and 12 reward points on international spending.
  • Each point equals ₹0.40 that you can redeem as Yatra vouchers.
  • Moreover, you can avail a 15% discount at partner restaurants.

10. Citibank PremierMiles Credit Card

This card is a dream come true for travelers as the miles never expire. It comes at an annual fee of ₹3000 and gives you a welcome gift of 10,000 miles. For every subsequent renewal of your card, you get 3000 miles. 

Let’s look at the features of this card.

  • You get 10 miles per ₹100 on travel booking at the PremierMiles website. For all other spendings, you get 4 miles per ₹100.
  • You can redeem your miles against airlines and hotels.
  • Also of note is the complimentary lounge access at domestic airports.
  • You can get a minimum of 15% discount at partner restaurants.

11. Standard Chartered Manhattan Platinum Credit Card

If you work in a metro city and feel compelled to spend in supermarkets, here is a card worth considering. At a joining fee of ₹499, it’s easy on your pocket. 

Moreover, this fee gets waived off if you spend ₹30,000 in the first year. Similarly, your renewal fee is eliminated if you spend ₹60,000 in a year.

Here are the features of this card.

  • It gives you 5% cash back for shopping at More, Reliance Fresh, Big Bazaar, and Food Bazaar. The maximum cashback is ₹500 every month.
  • For your expenditure in hotels, dining, airline tickets, and fuel, you can enjoy 5X reward points.
  • For every ₹100 that you spend, you collect 1 reward point.
  • You also get ₹2000 BookMyShow vouchers on your first transaction in the first 90 days.

Conclusion

As you’re growing more and more independent with a career, it only makes sense to instill some financial responsibility in your life.

With a good credit card, you can not only manage your expenses well but also save more money. With the options given above, you will be well informed to make the right decision.

about CRED

CRED is a members-only platform that rewards the creditworthy individuals of India with exclusive experiences, rewards and upgrades.

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