Credit cards that help you lounge while you fly

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Your guide to a comfortable flight.

Let’s face it, traveling can be a stressful experience. Finding a place to relax before you begin a strenuous journey is often a challenge. Having access to airport lounges with complimentary drinks and meals can make your transition way smoother.

In India, there are two main ways to access airport lounges free of cost. Both methods include credit cards and come with a plethora of benefits.

Priority Pass is currently the number one independent lounge programme which gives access to 1200+ airport lounges across 140 countries. It’s an add-on card which is a supplementary benefit of a credit card (primary card) that is required to access airport lounges affiliated with Priority Pass membership.

Diners Club Lounge gives access to 850 diners club airport lounges worldwide. You need a diners club credit card to access an airport lounge. There is no add-on card here, the entry will be given on the basis of a Diners Club credit card.

Here’s your guide to the best credit cards which provide airport lounge access through these two programmes along with their annual fee, benefits and more.

HDFC Bank Infinia

Meet your ideal travel companion, HDFC Infinia, that provides preferential access to 1000+ airport lounges worldwide under the Priority Pass membership. In addition, there are other benefits which can be availed using this credit card.

  • Enabled for contactless payments
  • Low markup fee on all foreign currency transactions
  • Complimentary Club Vistara Gold membership with one-year validity
  • Exclusive dining privileges at finest restaurants in India
  • 10 reward points for every INR 150 spent on travel bookings
  • High credit limit or no pre-set spending limit so that you can shop freely
  • Personal concierge services

CitiBank Prestige

Loaded with unique travel perks, CitiBank Prestige Credit Card offers complimentary Priority Pass membership which allows lounge access to 800 airports worldwide. You can use Priority Pass even in domestic lounges. Some more travel benefits of this credit card are:

  • Contactless payments
  • 10,000 bonus air miles and vouchers from Taj Group or ITC Hotels, every year
  • One night complimentary stay on a minimum booking of four nights at hotels worldwide
  • Earn 1 reward point domestically and 2 reward points overseas at every INR 100 spent from the card

YesBank Yes First Exclusive

The new entrant in credit card segment, Yes First Exclusive Credit Card provides a complimentary Priority Pass membership that allows unlimited access to 25+ domestic lounges in India. Some other benefits of this credit card are:

  • Contactless payments
  • Complimentary membership of Taj Inner Circle Epicure (for primary cardholder) which allows privileges on dining and hotel at Taj Group of hotels
  • 50,000 reward points on your first transaction within 90 days of activation
  • 10 reward points on every INR 100 spent on retail purchases
  • Life Insurance cover of INR 3 crore in the event of death due to flight accidents
  • 25% discount on movie tickets from BookMyShow

HDFC Bank Regalia

One of the premium credit cards, HDFC Regalia provides a Priority Pass membership which gives access to 1000+ airport lounges worldwide. The credit card offers 6 complimentary international lounge access in a calendar year. Other benefits of HDFC Regalia credit card are:

  • Contactless payments
  • Complimentary Zomato Gold membership
  • 4 reward points at every INR 150 spent from credit card
  • Exclusive dining privileges at premium restaurants
  • Low foreign currency markup of 2% + GST on all foreign purchases
  • Compensation of 1 crore in the event of a flight accident

HDFC Diners Club Black

On par with Priority Pass credit cards, HDFC Diners Club Black allows unlimited access to 700+ airport lounges in India and worldwide. All you need is the primary card (Diners Club Black credit card) to access an airport lounge. Other benefits of HDFC Diners Club Black credit card are:

  • Reward points on booking flight tickets across 150+ airlines
  • 5,000 reward points as the welcome bonus
  • Insurance cover of 2 crores in the event of air accident
  • Markup fee of 2% on all foreign currency transactions
  • 5 reward points on every INR 150 spent from credit card
  • 24×7 concierge services

HDFC Diners Club Premium

Sit back and relax in the leading lounges across the world by using HDFC Diners Club Premium Credit Card. You’ll complimentary access to 700+ airport lounges worldwide up to 6 times in a calendar year along with exciting reward points on international transactions. Here are some other benefits of using an HDFC Diners Club Premium credit card:

  • 2,500 reward points as the welcome bonus
  • Reward points on booking flight tickets across 150+ airlines
  • Up to 15% discount at 3000+ restaurants across India
  • 4 reward points for every INR 150 spent on retail purchases
  • Insurance cover of 1 crore in the event of air accident
  • Travel Insurance cover up to INR 25 lakhs

JetPrivilege HDFC Bank Diners Club Credit Card

Embark on an unruffled journey with JetPrivilege HDFC Diners Club credit card which allows unlimited access to over 550+ airport lounges including 30+ domestic lounges. You can avail a discounted Jet Airways flight tickets with the base fare waived off, and a discount voucher for return flight ticket by using a JetPrivilege credit card. Some other benefits of this credit card are:

  • 30,000 JPMiles as a welcome bonus after activating the card
  • 3x JPMiles for purchases made on the official Jet Airways website.
  • 8 JPMiles for every INR 150 spent from the card
  • Exclusive dining privileges with up to 15% off at finest restaurants
  • 24×7 concierge services on all bookings

Bottom line

When zooming into a credit card for airport lounge access, a few things to consider are the frequency of your travel and the times you will need to use the credit card. The annual fees of credit cards are high, so it’ll be useful to have one if you’re a frequent flyer. Consider the airports you travel to the most, and the availability of airport lounges are also important factors. After analyzing each parameter, we’re sure that you will have the right credit card at the back of your pocket.

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