Best Rewards Credit Cards in India

One of the reasons why people opt for credit cards is to earn rewards that can be redeemed for gifts, vouchers, air miles, travel related bookings etc. Furthermore, the more you spend on your credit card, the more you can earn. At FinTown, we spend thousands of hours researching financial products in India to help our customers make the best possible personal finance decisions. You can find below a comprehensive understanding of some of the best credit cards to earn rewards.

Credit Card Annual Fee APR Annual Bonus
SBI Card Elite INR 4,999 40.2% INR 17,500
Standard Chartered Bank Ultimate Visa Credit Card INR 5,000 37.20% INR 10,000 cash back on MakeMyTrip
Axis Bank Vistara Infinite Card INR 10,000 41.75% 10,000 bonus CV points and 3 business class tickets on achieving milestone spends. 1 business class ticket as a welcome gift.
YES Bank First Preferred Credit Card INR 2,500 23.88% 25,000 reward points
Standard Chartered Bank Manhattan Platinum Credit Card First year fee: INR Second year onwards: INR 999 41.88% BookMyShow vouchers worth INR 2,000
500 reward points on registering for online banking.
ICICI Bank Sapphiro American Express Credit Card First year fee: INR 6,500 + GST Year 2: INR 3,500 + GST 40.8% Vouchers worth INR 10,000.
HDFC Diner’s Club Black Credit Card Joining Fee: INR 10,000
Renewal Fee: INR 5,000
23.88% INR 9,578
RBL Bank Insignia Preferred Banking INR 5,000 40.80% INR 5,700 Accor Plus Membership

8 Best Rewards Credit Cards in India - Reviews, Features and Benefits [Explained]

SBI Elite Credit Card

The SBI Elite Credit Card is the most premium card offered by SBI aimed at satisfying frequent travellers and people who want to earn reward points. To gain the maximum benefit from this card, a customer must spend around INR 5-8 lakhs a year, which is on the higher side. Additionally, the SBI Elite Credit Card is perfect for cardholders who can take advantage of the membership programs to Trident, Vistara, and Priority Pass.

Pros & Cons:

Reasons to Choose Reasons to avoid
Club Vistara Membership & Trident Privilege Membership  High Annual Fee
Low Foreign Currency Mark-up Fee High interest rate
Domestic & International Airport Lounge Access  No golf privileges

Rewards/Benefits:

  • Welcome Benefit: The SBI Elite  Credit Card gives you an e-voucher worth INR 5000 as a welcome gift. You can use this voucher to choose between some popular travel and lifestyle brands such as Yatra, Hush Puppies/Bata, Marks & Spencer, Pantaloons and Shoppers Stop.
  • Milestone Spend Benefit: With the SBI Elite Credit Card, you can earn 10,000 reward points on achieving spends between 3 lakhs to 4 lakhs. Furthermore, you earn 15,000 reward points on achieving annual spends between 5 lakhs and 8 lakh. The milestone benefits would sum up to INR 12,500 per year.
  • Rewards Programme:
    • - 10 reward points on every INR 100 that you spend on grocery, dining spends and departmental stores.
    • - 2 reward points per INR 100 on all other categories.
  • Airport Lounge Access: Complimentary membership to the Priority Pass Program worth $99 which gives you 6 complimentary lounge visits per year. Additionally, you get 2 free domestic airport lounge visits.
  • Fraud liability cover: You get fraud liability cover worth INR 1 Lakh
  • Complimentary movie tickets: You can save up to INR 6,000 a year on movie tickets.
  • Low Foreign Currency Mark-up Fee: The SBI Elite Credit Card has a low foreign currency mark-up fee for 1.99%.

Quick Figures:

Annual Fee   INR 4,999
Annual Bonus  INR 5,000 as the initial bonus and 12,500 bonus points as milestone spend benefit
APR  40.2%
Minimum Requirements\ Should be a salaried employee

The best feature of this credit card is that it allows you to earn 10 reward points for every INR 100 spent on three different categories. For all other categories, you earn 2 points for every  INR 100 spent. Additionally, you get airport lounge access, Trident Privilege Membership, Club Vistara Membership, Fuel Surcharge Waiver etc.

Standard Chartered Bank Ultimate Credit Card

The Standard Chartered Bank Ultimate Credit Card is a good option when it comes to earning rewards on all your spends. Additionally, this card offers you a lot in terms of welcome benefit, cash back on uber rides and duty-free spends.

Pros & Cons:

Reasons to Choose Reasons to avoid
 Complimentary Priority Pass Membership  High Annual Percentage Rate
 Cash back on Uber rides  High Membership Fee
 Welcome bonus points from MakeMyTrip worth INR 10,000

Rewards/Benefits:

  • Welcome benefit:  Up to INR 10,000 cash back on MakeMyTrip on booking your flight ticket within 90 days of card issuance.
  • Rewards Programme: 5 Reward points for every INR 150 you spend on this card where 1 reward point equals INR 1.
  • Cash back on Uber Rides: 20% cash back on Uber Rides on spending INR 15,000; cash back of 5% at duty-free outlets.
  • Dining Discounts: 25% discounts on dining bills at partner restaurants.
  • Low Foreign Currency Markup Fee: 2% foreign currency mark-up fee
  • Airport Lounge Access - Complimentary Priority Pass Membership worth $99. $27 visit fee waived off on spending INR 20,000 on your card in the previous month.
  • Golf Games: Access 20 premier golf courses in the country with 1 complimentary golf game and 1 complimentary coaching session per month at any of the partner domestic golf courses.
  • Dining Discounts: Up to 25% off on dining bills at partner restaurants.

Quick Figures:

Annual Fee   INR 5,000
Annual Bonus Welcome bonus points from MakeMyTrip worth INR 10,000
APR  41.88%
Minimum Requirements Should be a salaried employee

The Standard Chartered Bank Ultimate Credit Card is a good option to earn reward points on all your spends and get access to airport lounges and golf privileges. Although the interest rate is on the higher side, the benefits earned due to this card outweighs the disadvantages.

Axis Bank Vistara Infinite Credit Card

The Axis Bank Vistara Infinite Credit Card is beneficial for Club Vistara frequent flyers. With every swipe, you would accrue Club Vistara points. Additionally, you get up to 3 business class tickets on achieving milestone spend requirement.

Pros & Cons:

Reasons to Choose Reasons to avoid
Club Vistara Membership & Trident Privilege Membership  High Annual Fee
Low Foreign Currency Mark-up Fee High interest rate
Domestic & International Airport Lounge Access  No golf privileges

Rewards/Benefits:

  • Welcome Benefit: One complimentary business class ticket
  • Club Vistara Membership:
    • - Complimentary Club Vistara Gold Membership
    • - Earn 6 CV points for every INR 200 spent
  • Milestone Benefit: Up to 3 Business Class tickets on achieving milestone spend requirements.
  • Golf games: 6 complimentary rounds of golf.
  • Insurance Benefits: 
    • - Air Accident Cover of up to INR 2,50,00,000
    • - Purchase Protection Cover up to INR 1,00,000
    • - Lost Card Liability up to 100% your credit limit
    • - Loss Travel Documents Cover up to USD 300
    • - Delay of Check-In Baggage Cover up to USD 300
    • - Loss of Check-In Baggage Cover up to USD 500

Quick Figures:

Annual Fee   INR 10,000
Annual Bonus 10,000 bonus CV points and 3 business class tickets on achieving milestone spends. 1 business class ticket as a welcome gift.
APR  41.75%
Minimum Requirements Net income should be INR 6,00,000 p.a.

While the Axis Bank Vistara Infinite Membership takes care of most of your needs, it does not offer you any dining or movie benefits. Nevertheless, this card is good for Club Vistara frequent travellers.

YES Bank First Preferred Credit Card

YES Bank First Preferred Credit Card targets individuals earning INR 1,20,000 a month or people who want to avail this credit card with a specified fixed deposit. This card offers low foreign currency mark-up fee, airport lounge access, insurance coverage and airport lounge access.

Pros & Cons:

Reasons to Choose Reasons to avoid
Club Vistara Membership & Trident Privilege Membership  High Annual Fee
Low Foreign Currency Mark-up Fee High interest rate
Domestic & International Airport Lounge Access  No golf privileges

Rewards/Benefits:

  • Welcome Offer: 15,000 reward points on your first transaction within 90 days of the card set up.
  • Renewal Benefit: 10,000 reward points on each renewal
  • Annual bonus reward points: 20,000 Bonus Reward Points on achieving spends of INR 7.5 Lakhs or more in each anniversary year
  • Preferred Rewards Programme:
    • - 8 reward points on every INR 100 retail spends.
    • - 1000 Reward Points on each YES PayNow registration
  • Master Card World Golf Programme:
    • - Waiver of 3 green fee
    • - One complimentary golf lesson every month
  • Airport Lounge access: Complimentary Priority Pass Membership and 4 Complimentary Visits in a calendar year for Primary Cardmember only. Domestic Lounge visits are restricted to 3 visits per calendar quarter.
  • Insurance Coverage: 
    • - Life Insurance Cover of INR 1 Cr for death due to Flight Accident
    • - Medical Insurance cover of INR 25 Lakhs for emergency hospitalization when travelling overseas
    • - Credit Shield cover in case of accidental death of Primary Cardmember
  • Entertainment offers: 25% discount on movie tickets through BookMyShow.

Quick Figures:

Annual Fee  INR 2,500
Annual Bonus 25,000 reward points
APR  23.88%
Minimum Requirements Minimum Net Salary of INR 120,000 per month or Income Tax Return of INR 18.00 Lacs and above
Also available on Fixed Deposit

The YES Bank Preferred First Credit Card is a great option for those who want to earn rewards and get a low foreign currency mark-up fee. However, one needs to have a high net monthly income to be eligible for this card.

Standard Chartered Bank Manhattan Credit Card:

The Standard Chartered Bank Manhattan Platinum Credit Card targets new credit card users who have a salaried job. It offers a cash back of 5% on all your grocery spends. However, the best feature of these credit cards is a 20% cash back on all your Uber rides. Additionally, the 3X reward points on other spends are also very impressive. Therefore, all of these benefits make this card perfect for an urban dweller in India.

Pros & Cons:

Reasons to Choose  Reasons to Avoid 
 Low Annual Fee High Annual Percentage Rate
 Cash back on Uber  Minimum spend of INR 1000 for cash back
 Cash back on grocery spend  No airport lounge access
 Welcome benefit  No Fuel Surcharge Waiver

Rewards/Benefits:

  • Welcome Benefit: 
    • - BookMyshow Voucher worth INR 2,000 upon joining
    • - 500 reward points upon registering for mobile banking.
  • Cash back :
    •  20% Cash back on Uber Rides.
    • - Total savings in Uber amounts to INR 600 a month and INR 7200 a year
  • Cashback: 5% cash back on all your grocery spends
  • Rewards: 3X reward points on every INR 150 you spend on other categories (excluding grocery spends).

Quick Figures:

Annual Fee INR 999 Joining Fee: INR 499
Annual Bonus BookMyShow Voucher worth INR 2000 and 500 reward points.
APR 41.88%
Minimum Requirements A salaried individual; should belong to credit card sourcing cities/locations of the bank.

This card is perfect for those seeking an entry-level card with good cash back and rewards options in metro cities. However, if you cannot make your credit card bill payments in full, then you should consider taking another credit card as the interest rate for this credit card is on the higher side.

ICICI Bank Sapphiro American Express Credit Card

The ICICI Bank Sapphiro Credit Card is marketed as a super-premium card that offers good welcome bonus and milestone benefit. Furthermore, it offers complimentary airport lounge access and golf games every year. Additionally, you can get up to 15% dining discounts with this credit card. With this card, you can earn u to 20,000 PAYBACK points every year.

Pros & Cons:

Reasons to Choose Reasons to Avoid
 Airport Lounge Access  Devaluation of card
 Joining benefit  High Annual Fee
 Golf privileges  High Interest Rate
 Dining discounts  Unimpressive Rewards Rate

Rewards/Benefits

  • Welcome Benefit: Shopping and Travel Vouchers worth INR 10,000 upon payment of joining fee.
  • Airport Lounge Access:
    • - 4 complimentary domestic airport lounge visits per quarter.
    • - 2 complimentary international airport lounge visits.
  • Golf rounds: 4 complimentary rounds of golf based on eligible spends.
  • Movie offers: 2 complimentary BookMyShow movie or event tickets worth INR 500 every month.
  • Dining Discounts: 15% savings on dining bills
  • Reward points:
    • - Up to 20,000 payback points
    • - Up to 6 PAYBACK points on every INR 100 spent
    • - 1 PAYBACK point for every INR 100 spent on Fuel
  • Milestone Benefit:
    • - 4,000 PAYBACK points on spending INR 4,00,000 on your card and 2,000 PAYBACK points each time you cross INR 1,00,000 spend thereafter in an anniversary year. per year.

Quick Figures:

Annual Fee Year 1: INR 6,500 + GST Year 2: INR 3,500 + GST
Annual Bonus Vouchers worth INR 10,000
APR 40.8%
Minimum Requirements A good credit score

The ICICI Bank Sapphiro American Express Credit Card, although marketed as a Super Premium Card, has lost some of its charms after its devaluation. Earlier, you would have received a membership to the Gold Elite tier of Flying Blue, the leading European frequent flyer programme, upon purchase of a return trip air ticket from Air France-KLM. Moreover, the PAYBACK points on this card are not as good as similar cards in this segment. Therefore, it would not be incorrect to say that the Sapphiro Card is rather a premium card and not Super-Premium.

HDFC Diner's Club Black Credit Card (For rewards)

Recognized for its excellent rewards programme, the HDFC Diner's Club Black Credit Card is the best HDFC credit card for earning rewards. Every reward point can be redeemed for Re 1 on booking flight tickets/hotels. This card offers 6 golf games per quarter and unlimited airport lounge access. Furthermore, this card also comes with an impressive insurance policy. Additionally, you get 10X rewards on all your international spends.

Pros & Cons:

Reasons to Choose Reasons to Avoid 
 Great rewards and benefits High first-year membership fee and renewal fee
 Unlimited Airport Lounge Access Difficult to get
 Low Foreign Currency Mark-up Fee  Card acceptability
Golf games  (Green Fee Waiver)

Rewards/Benefits:

  • 10x Reward Points on all International Spends and Smartbuy.
  • 5X rewards on all other transactions.i.e. 5 reward points for every INR 150 spent.
  • Value of each reward point equals Re 1.  Up to 25,000 reward points a year.
  • 3 free movie tickets on BookMyShow.
  • 6 complimentary golf games per quarter.
  • Concierge services
  • Air accident cover of INR 2 Crore
  • Emergency medical expenses cover of INR 50 Lakh.
  • Global Value Program at  INR 199 Annual Fee.
    • - 500 Bonus reward points as a welcome benefit on 1st international spends.
    • - 1% Cashback on all International transactions.
    • - INR 2,000 worth Yatra vouch on reaching milestone spend of INR 1,50,000 on international spends.

Quick Figures:

Annual Fee  Year 1 Fee: INR 10,000 Renewal Fee: INR 5,000
Annual Bonus 10,000 bonus points as a welcome gift 5,000 bonus points on renewal
APR 23.88%
Minimum Requirements For salaried: Net Monthly Income > INR 1.75 Lakhs per month. For self-employed: ITR > INR 21 Lakhs per annum

The HDFC Bank Diner's Club Black Credit Card gives an impressive savings of up to 33%. With this card, you earn 10X rewards on all your international spends, making this card the best credit card for earning reward points. Additionally, you can earn up to 25,000 reward points, where every reward point equals Re 1. This card also offers a good deal when it comes to dining discounts and BookMyShow offers.

RBL Bank Insignia Preferred Banking Credit Card

The RBL Bank Insignia Preferred Credit Card targets Priority or premier customers of the bank. It takes care of all your luxury needs by providing you with a dedicated relationship manager, impressive rewards, invitations to special events, Accor Plus Membership, exclusive dining privileges, complimentary access to airport lounges and complimentary golf games and golf lesson each month.

Pros & Cons:

Reasons to Choose Reasons to Avoid
 Dedicated Relationship Manager  High interest rate
 Golf games and lessons  No welcome bonus
 Airport Lounge Access  High Annual Fee
 Accor Plus Membership
 Concierge services

Rewards/Benefits:

  • Rewards programme:
    • - 5 reward points for every INR 100 spent on domestic transactions
    • - 10 Reward points for every INR 100 spent on international transactions.
  • Priority Pass Membership:
    • - Complimentary Priority Pass Membership, where you get 6 visits per year using your Priority Pass
    • - 2 complimentary access to domestic lounges.
  • BookMyShow Discounts: Flat INR 500 discount on BookMyShow movie tickets.
  • Golf Games: Access to premier golf courses in India and 1 complimentary golf lesson every month.
  • Concierge Services: World-class concierge services with regards to referrals and reservation assistance for golf, car rental, hotels, spa sessions, events etc

Quick Figures:

Annual Fee  INR 5,000
Annual Bonus  Nil
APR  40.80%
Minimum Requirements  You should be a Priority customer of RBL Bank

If you have a high Total Relationship Balance with RBL, then the RBL Bank Insignia Preferred Credit Card could be right for you. It has a lot to offer, however, there's no annual bonus. All you get is rewards and benefits such as Accor Plus and Priority Pass Memberships.

 Bottom Line

All of these credit cards are some of the best credit cards to earn reward points for the money you spend on your credit card. However, if we were to choose the best among all these credit cards, the Standard Chartered Ultimate Visa Credit Card will emerge as the winner since it offers a great initial bonus,  a reasonable APR and you get to earn good reward points on all your spends.

FinTown Advantage:  We provide unbiased personal finance advice to help people make the best possible financial decisions. Our reviews and ratings of financial products are determined by customer financial wellbeing and not profiteering. Whether or not we make a penny, we do what is best for the customer. Our research team is made up of economists and market researchers who spend hundreds of hours researching and comparing products with the same mission in mind.