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Top Virtual Credit Cards in India


Are you looking for extra security of your bank details while shopping online? Then go for one of the top Virtual Credit Cards in India.

Other than maximum security, Virtual Credit Cards are easy to carry and use. You need not worry about any fraudulent transactions on your credit card or bank account.

What are Virtual Credit Cards?

As the term implies, a Virtual Credit Card exists online only. It has no physical presence like the regular, plastic credit card.

A Virtual Credit Card carries the 16-digit unique number issued by your bank in collaboration with Visa International, MasterCard, Diners Club or RuPay.

It also bears the three-digit Card Verification Value (CVV) number for better security.

Usually, a Virtual Credit Card will also have a Personal Identification Number (PIN), similar to their physical counterparts.

However, Virtual Credit Cards will not bear your signature anywhere.

There are several more features of Virtual Credit Cards, which we will discuss later in this article. First, let us know the top Virtual Credit Cards in India that are easily available.

Top Virtual Credit Cards Available in India

Usually, a Virtual Credit Card will be linked to your existing credit card. Also, never confuse between a Virtual Credit Card and a virtual debit card: they are totally different. Interested? Here is our list of five topmost Virtual Credit Cards in India.

1. SBI Corporate Virtual Credit Card

SBI Corporate Credit Card is available for businesses only. This Virtual Credit Card allows companies to make large payments quickly, even if they do not have cash or adequate bank balance.

Businesses that take SBI Corporate Virtual Credit Card to get a lot of benefits. They can issue a single-use or multiple use Virtual Credit Cards (VCCs) to several officials responsible for making online payments.

SBI Corporate Virtual Credit Card customers can also decide the spending limit they wish to allot for every staff handling payments. This feature helps reduce frauds and unnecessary spending.

Additionally, businesses need not pay the bank instantly: they can avail of the credit period or opt for part settlement of their corporate credit card bill.

2. HDFC NetSafe Virtual Credit Card

For individuals, the best VCC comes from India’s largest private sector lender, HDFC Bank. This top virtual credit card is called HDFC NetSafe.

HDFC Bank is offering this card keeping in mind the reluctance among Indians to disclose their banking or credit card details online.

It is very easy to apply for an HDFC Bank NetSafe Virtual Credit Card. You need to have an existing HDFC credit card to get a VCC.

Simply login to your net banking account with HDFC Bank and register on the link to get instant Virtual Credit Card.

HDFC Bank also offers VCCs to account holders that do not hold a credit card.

However, you have to be eligible to get a VCC, as per guidelines of the bank.

HDFC Bank NetSafe VCC carries a host of promotions, special offers, cashbacks and other attractive schemes that you can avail simply by using this Virtual Credit Card.

3. ICICI Bank InAFlash Virtual Credit Card

Should you require a Virtual Credit Card almost instantly, opt for the ICICI Bank InAFlash VCC.

If you qualify and hold an ICICI Bank account or credit card, this VCC is available in a couple of minutes only.

You can apply for ICICI Bank InAFlash Virtual Credit Card from a computer or iMobile, its mobile banking app, while on the move.

This is one of the top Virtual Credit Cards in India because of the speed at which it generates.

This VCC is available for single or multiple uses and comes packed with features like cashback and other special offers.

4. Axis Purchase Control Credit Card

Axis Purchase Control Credit Card from Axis Bank comes with a special feature. You can select the categories of shopping while you apply for this Virtual Credit Card.

Meaning, nobody can fraudulently use the card for any other category of service.

For example, if you select the ‘Groceries’ category only, nobody can use this card for online shopping or paying utilities bills.

You can add or remove up to 29 different categories of spend. This allows you to have total control over your spending with Axis Purchase Control VCC.

Furthermore, users can also set a maximum limit for spending under each category or for the entire VCC. You can change PIN and other access control features online.

5. Kotak Netc@rd

Kotak Netc@rd is another top Virtual Credit Card in India. There are two variants of Kotak Netc@ard: one that links to your savings account and another that connects to your physical credit card.

Getting a Kotak Netc@rd is very easy. Simply go to website of the Kotak Mahindra Bank and provide the necessary details. You get the VCC within a few minutes.

It is also possible to get a Virtual Credit Card through the Kotak 811 online savings account. Usually, these VCCs come with small credit limits.

This precaution is to ensure that nobody can splurge large amounts, if details accidentally fall into wrong hands.

Wrap Up

Virtual Credit Cards are much different than Virtual Debit Cards. VCCs give you credit while the other debits money directly from your account.

A major advantage of VCCs is that you can access them even from your smartphone, using the app provided by issuing bank.

You can opt for single use or multiple uses VCC. And finally, VCCs keep your identity a secret to a great extent. If you are wary about online transactions and fraud, go for any of these top Virtual Credit Cards in India.

Best Cashback Credit Cards in India


Should you wish to stretch every Rupee spent on shopping, opt for one of the best cashback credit cards in India.

You will definitely be surprised at the amazing array of benefits they offer. These credit cards offer attractive cashbacks when you shop at brick-and-mortar stores or online.

Surely, this sounds interesting. If so, continue reading. Here I will list 10 best cashback credit cards in India. Possibly, you may be unaware of the existence of some of these cards.

Understanding Cashback Credit Cards

Usually, every credit card comes with rewards programs. This means you get reward points for every spending.

However, cashback credit cards are totally different. They reimburse a percentage of the amount you spend.

These cashbacks will reflect on your credit card bill for the billing cycle. Or the money will be returned to you in some other form.

Therefore, cashback credit cards are much different from those offering rewards programs only.

Further, there are certain credit cards that offer cashback on specific products only. These too are a different genre.

Therefore, here we list only those credit cards that offer cashback facility.

Top 10 Cashback Credit Cards in India

Cashback credit cards in India operate in different ways. Some offer points for every Rupee you spend. These points translate as cash for future purchases. Others will directly offer a discount when you buy something using the credit card.

1. HDFC Bank Cashback Credit Cards

HDFC Cashback Credit Cards
Image Source: https://www.hdfcbank.com/personal/credit_card/moneyback

A fantastic range of six cashback credit cards, each offering equally amazing benefits, are available from India’s largest private sector lender, HDFC Bank.

HDFC Bank’s range of cashback credit cards includes:

  1. Visa Platinum Edge
  2. MasterCard
    • Titanium Edge
    • MoneyBack
    • Bharat Cashback Card
  3. RuPay Bharat Card
  4. Visa Freedom Card

While HDFC Bank markets these under the category ‘cashback cards’, other credit cards issued by the bank also offer attractive cashback schemes.

In fact, almost every credit card issued by HDFC Bank either from the Visa International, MasterCard and Diners Club brand includes at least one or more cashback schemes.

Additionally, HDFC Bank has special credit cards for women, professionals including doctors and teachers as well as cobranded cards with Jet Airways- India’s largest private sector airline.

Eligibility for these cards vary. For some credit cards, you may have to be an HDFC Bank account holders. You can check directly with your nearest HDFC Bank branch for eligibility criteria.

2. Amazon Pay- ICICI Bank

Amazon Pay Credit Card
Image Source: ICICI Bank Amazon Pay Credit Card

Should you be an avid shopper on Amazon for everything from groceries to expensive gadgets, consider the cobranded Amazon Pay-ICICI Bank Credit Card. This card gives cashback on all purchases made on Amazon as well as other online stores to your neighbourhood grocery.

Amazon Pay-ICICI Bank credit card does not attract a joining or annual fee.

Amazon Prime customers can get up to five percent cashback on all purchases made from Amazon India online store. Non-Prime customers get three percent cashback.

You are also entitled to two percent cashback for shopping from over 100 Amazon Pay partner merchants across India. For other shopping, the Amazon Pay-ICICI Bank credit card offers one percent cashback.

These cashbacks in addition to any other special offers on Amazon India online store.

Additionally, Amazon Pay-ICICI Bank credit card gives 15 percent savings at over 2,500 restaurants across India and waiver of one percent fuel surcharge at petrol stations.

Cashback amounts are directly credited to your Amazon Pay balance.

Furthermore, ICICI Bank gives complimentary membership of its Culinary Treats dining rewards programs to this credit card holders.

You need not hold an account at ICICI Bank to avail this cobranded credit card.

3. YES Prosperity Plus Cashback Credit Card

Image Source: YES Prosperity Cashback Plus Credit Card

As the name indicates, this cashback credit card comes from YES Bank.

There are two distinct cashback credit cards from YES Bank:

  • Prosperity Credit Card
  • YES Prosperity Plus Credit Card.

Both are from the MasterCard brand.

YES Prosperity Cashback Credit Card gives five percent cashback on your spends on movies, groceries and utility payments. On all other spendings, this credit card offers 0.5 percent cashback per billing cycle on other spends, excluding fuel.

YES Prosperity Plus Cashback Credit Card: Benefits are similar to the Prosperity Cashback credit card. Only, you get 0.75 percent cashback on all other spends except fuel.

You need not be a YES Bank customer to apply for this credit card. Entry is open to anyone with a provable monthly income of Rs.25,000 and above.

4. Axis Bank My Choice Credit Card

Image Source: http://www.kdms.in/axisbank

Axis Bank My Choice Credit Card comes with a unique feature: it allows you to select any two from the six categories you want cashback. These include dining, fuel, electronics, utility bills, travel and supermarkets.

This credit card offers a flat five percent cashback on spending on the two categories you choose.

Axis Bank also allows you to personalize your My Choice credit card. This means you can select a picture of your choice to appear on the credit card.

You can apply for an Axis Bank credit card without being a customer of this bank.

5. RBL Classic Shopper Card

Image Source: RBL bank

Another fabulous cashback credit card in India comes from RBL Bank known as RBL Classic Shopper Card, it comes from MasterCard label.

RBL Classic Shopper Card offers selective cashback offers. The cashback can also be donated to charities listed on their website.

RBL Bank claims it has India’s first ever digital rewards redemption portal from where you can redeem your points for cashbacks.

Only eligible customers of RBL Bank can apply for this credit card.

6. IRCTC- SBI Platinum Card

Image Source: SBI bank

IRCTC-SBI Platinum Card is a cobranded credit card issued by Indian Railways Catering & Transport Corporation and the country’s largest public sector lender, State Bank of India.

This card offers cashback of 10 percent on train tickets of Indian Railways in the Air-Conditioned (AC)-single, AC-Two Tier, AC-Three Tier and AC Chair Car classes.

This card also gives cashback of Re.1 for every Rs.125 for train tickets in other classes, bought from the IRCTC portal.

Additionally, IRCTC-SBI Platinum card gives a waiver of 1.8 percent reservation surcharge while booking train tickets online and offline.

It gives a Re.1 cashback on non-fuel purchases too like groceries, paying utility bills, mobile recharge and other spendings.

Further, IRCTC-SBI Platinum Card gives a waiver of one percent fuel surcharge at petrol stations across India. Additional cashbacks and benefits are available for other purchases made on the IRCTC portal too.

Only SBI customers can apply for this cobranded credit card.

7. Standard Chartered Manhattan Platinum Credit Card

Image Source: https://myfaayda.com

This ranks among the best cashback credit cards in India.

The Standard Chartered Manhattan Platinum Credit Card gives five percent cashback on spends at supermarkets. Additionally, you get rewards worth three times the value of your spending on other purchases.

Further, Standard Chartered Manhattan Platinum Credit Card also gives its holders the membership of an exclusive Good Life Program which provides free lounge access at Indian and foreign airports, discounts on beauty and spa treatment, dining and entertainment, among others.

Non-customers of Standard Chartered Bank can also apply for this credit card, subject to meeting eligibility criteria.

8. Bank of Baroda Credit Cards

Image Source: https://www.bobfinancial.com

Leading public sector lender, Bank of Baroda has two cashback credit cards.

  • Bank of Baroda- Visa Easy Credit Card gives 0.5 percent cashback on your card bill during every cycle. This means you are getting cashback regardless of how you spend on this credit card.
  • Bank of Baroda- MasterCard Prime offers a one percent cashback on all spends.

9. Saraswat Bank RuPay Platinum

Image source: https://www.saraswatbank.com

India’s topmost cooperative lender, Saraswat Bank Ltd issues the RuPay Platinum credit card.

This credit card offers cashback on select purchases. However, specific details about cashback program of Saraswat Bank RuPay Platinum Credit Card are not available.

Saraswat Bank customers only can apply for this credit card.


10. Canara Bank RuPay Platinum Card

Image Source: https://www.cardexpert.in/

Canara Bank RuPay Platinum Card offers up to 10 percent cashback on purchases on Amazon India. Additionally, you can get a maximum of Rs.25 discount on all shopping on Amazon India too.

Additionally, Canara Bank RuPay card comes with the unique feature of availing great discounts from various offers on the National Payments Corporation of India (NCPI) portal.

Only Canara Bank customers are eligible for this credit card.

Wrap Up

Before selecting a cashback credit card from any bank, it is advisable to read their fine print. Cashbacks are given in different ways by each bank.

The period for giving cashback can also vary. Hence, it is essential to know the terms and conditions that govern your cashback credit card in India.

Furthermore, it is also worth remembering that credit card issuers have the sole discretion to withdraw or revise any cashback offers.

Therefore, it is better to choose a cashback credit card that suits your specific needs, depending upon your buying patterns.

It is vital to also know whether the cashback you get has any expiry date or blackout periods since you may be unable to use the money later.

I hope this article helps you in choosing the best cashback credit card in India and please feel free to provide your views and comments on the article.

10 Benefits of Credit Cards


There are several benefits of Credit Cards of which you may be unaware.

Other than giving you instant money and buying power, you can also avail several exclusive benefits from your Credit Card.

Once upon a time, credit cards were the privilege of the very affluent and famous people. Not everyone could get one. At best, prosperous businesses could apply for one in their name or that of top executives.

Today, almost every woman and man in India from the middle-income group can apply and get a credit card from their bank with fair ease.

All they need is a good credit score. Sometimes, you may have to transfer salary to the bank that issues a credit card.

Others are more lenient and require you to meet certain criteria such qualifying income, Permanent Account Number (PAN) and proper, verifiable address proof.

In fact, credit card industry in India has become so competitive, banks are finding it hard to find new applicants.

Hence, they send emails that make excellent offers to new credit card customers. Others try and attract customers with superb benefits for credit card holders.

If you already hold or wish to apply for one, here are top 10 benefits of credit cards you may not know.

Depending upon your type of credit card, here are some excellent benefits you get.

Top Benefits of Credit Cards

Here I will discuss the topmost benefits of credit cards. As I said earlier, benefits may vary according to issuer and level of membership.

1. Peace of Mind

Undoubtedly, peace of mind is the greatest benefit any credit card gives you.

Holding a credit card means you will always have money to spend, though you have no cash. This means you can pay for any service or buy something in emergencies.

Most hospitals, pharmacies and other emergency services accept credit card payments.

You need not worry about meeting any unexpected and sudden expenses that are not covered by insurance.

Nor do you need to run helter-skelter to borrow money from relatives and friends for such expenses.

This peace of mind compensates more than adequately for any annual membership fees you pay for the credit card.

However, to get this benefit, you have to ensure there is adequate balance on your credit card by using it prudently and only when the need arises.

2. Online Shopping Benefits

Major online stores like Amazon and Flipkart, among others, give special and instant discounts if you pay using a credit card from specific banks.

These discounts range between two and 10 percent of the purchase value. Further, such discounts for online shopping are available round the year and not limited to sales or festival seasons only.

Another amazing benefit of credit cards for online shopping is facilities to pay in installments.

You might not have sufficient balance on the credit card while shopping for something expensive.

However, you can pay for your purchases up to 24 months in some cases, by using a credit card.

Understandably, you will pay a little more for the shopping through Equated Monthly Instalments (EMIs).

This is because credit card purchases attract something called Annual Percentage Rate (APR) which works like bank interest on loans. But you are getting the latest stuff when you need it most.

3. Airport Lounge Access

A lot of credit cards nowadays offer free access to Business and First class lounges while awaiting your flight.

This means you can relax in the comfort of an airline lounge instead of the waiting area of the airport.

This facility is available worldwide since Visa International and MasterCard, among others, have global agreements with airports and airlines for lounge access for customers.

Hence, even if you are travelling Economy class, you get free lounge access. Generally, such free lounge access will cover you and the spouse as well as children below age of 12 years.

Waiting at a Business and First class airport lounge entitles you to free beverages (including liquor where permitted), snacks and entertainment.

At some airports, you also get priority boarding of the flight, along with Business and First class passengers.

4. Loyalty Points

Most credit card members overlook this excellent benefit. Almost every credit card comes with free membership to a loyalty program.

This means, whenever you pay with the credit card, you get a certain number of points. Additionally, you earn more loyalty points for spending at merchants with whom a credit card issuer has agreements.

Loyalty points you earn by simply using the credit card to pay are useful for several things.  You can exchange them for expensive freebies including shopping vouchers or expensive gifts.

You can redeem them in exchange of cash discount when making purchases.

However, loyalty points usually come with an expiry date. Unless you use them before expiry, these loyalty points go wasted.

The credit card issuer pays for these loyalty points. Hence, you end up wasting your money as well as that of the issuer.

5. Free Insurance Cover

Nowadays, almost every credit card offers you some free insurance. These are usually group insurance covers taken by the issuer for its credit card members.

Depending upon the credit card issuer and type of card, you can be covered for accidental injury or death, loss of baggage during travel and sometimes, life insurance too.

Some credit cards offer purchase protection, meaning the stuff you buy is insured against damage and theft.

If you hold a credit card or plan to avail one, find out about such complimentary insurance. Nominate a family member and keep them posted about this benefit of the credit card.

In the unfortunate event of an accident, your family members can get some vital cash assistance from the credit card issuer.

6. Cash Advances

With a credit card, you need not to worry about having any cash in hand.

In fact, your credit card also allows you to withdraw cash from ATMs. Such withdrawals attract additional charges.

However, the facility is very useful if you need to pay cash immediately at places where credit or debit cards are not accepted.

Also, it is handy when you have insufficient balance in your bank account to meet some expense.

Using the cash advance facility, you also get another benefit from the credit card. You can send money to a bank account anywhere using net banking or mobile banking facilities.

In some countries like India, you cannot send money to bank accounts abroad without prior approval from concerned authorities.

However, you can send money almost instantly to relatives and friends across India, if the need arises.

7. Making Investments

Making investments without having much bank balance or cash is a great benefit of credit cards.

How? Nowadays, Asset Management Companies (AMCs) that offer Mutual Funds accept credit cards for lump-sum purchases or Systematic Investment Plans.

Or you can buy government bonds and stocks using a credit card too.

This benefit is particularly useful when you find an attractive investment opportunity that you do not want to miss.

In such cases, you can easily overcome the cash crunch by using a credit card to make the investments.

You can always settle the amount due on your credit card during the forthcoming billing cycle and ensure you do not pay APR, which keeps your investment attractive.

8. Quick Card Replacement

Should your credit card be lost or stolen while abroad, the issuing brand like Visa International or MasterCard tries to replace one within 72 hours of reporting.

The card will be delivered at the earliest at a foreign address where you can collect it safely.

This means you need not fear being stranded in some foreign land without money.

Additionally, major credit card issuers have 24-hour helplines. They help you report a lost or stolen credit card and take requests for issuing new ones.

Once you report a card as lost or stolen, your liabilities get limited. Once the credit card issuer acknowledges your complaint and hotlists it, you can challenge and refuse to pay any expenses made fraudulently.

9. Global Acceptance

A report by London-based RBR estimates that Visa International and MasterCard each had around 38 million merchants worldwide that accept their credit cards by end of the calendar year 2018.

This figure does not include other issuers like Diners Club, Discovery, Japan Credit Bureau and others. By the year 2022, this figure is expected to cross 90 million merchants worldwide, RBR projects.

Asia is seen as the largest growing market for credit cards and includes countries like India and China.

Given these facts, your credit card will be accepted almost anywhere in the world by most businesses.

This means you need not carry cash while shopping at stores. Also, credit cards are borderless that dispense with your need to carry different currencies while travelling abroad.

10. Loans on Credit Card

Nowadays, lots of banks offer instant loans to their credit card holders that have a good spending and repayment record.

Often, such loans are approved and given within three to four days. The facility can be used by credit card holders to avail loan from other banks too.

Usually, the lending bank will ask for minimal documentation when advancing a loan on basis of your credit card.

Interest rates applicable on loans on credit card usually vary according to each bank and its policies.

However, most of these interest rates are at par with those of regular personal loans or marginally higher, which makes them more attractive.

This benefit is very useful if you need a loan in hurry and cannot find guarantors and want to avoid many hassles.

Wrap Up

A credit card can be an excellent asset that can save you from financial worries, help with investments and overcome crises, provided you use it prudently.

Else, a credit card debt can cripple you financially and ruin your credit score. If you already have a credit card, knowing these benefits can help you get better value.

And should you plan to apply for one, ensure your spending habits will not ruin the benefits of a credit card.

How Benefits Are Decided

All credit cards offer great benefits. However, some of these benefits may vary according to the issuing bank and your level of membership.

Normally, credit cards come in four levels that can be broadly classified as Classic or entry level, Silver or those for people with medium but steady income, Gold for the affluent class such as senior executives and Platinum for those in topmost income range.

Classifications can vary from bank to bank.

Different Types of Credit Cards in India

Different Types of credit cards in India

Want to know more about different types of credit cards in India?

Surely you would. It is very important to know about every detail before applying for a credit card.

Over 900 million valid credit cards issued by various banks in India are currently in active usage, according to statistics from Reserve Bank of India and other sources, released in January 2019.

Projections are, this figure will almost triple in by 2022 as India moves towards becoming a cashless economy.

These figures are nothing unusual if you look at the amazing variety and types of credit cards in India that are issued by the Public Sector Undertaking (PSU), private, cooperative and foreign banks.

Whether you are student or professional, homemaker or businesswoman, it is very easy to get a credit card in India. Moreover, you can apply and get a credit card that meets your specific needs.

Sounds interesting?

Then read more about these amazing types of credit cards in India that you can apply for. The names or brands of some credit cards may vary. However, they will provide almost similar benefits, terms and conditions.

Types of Credit Cards in India:

In India, there is an amazing array of credit cards you can choose from. Each type of credit card in India is issued to a holder on various criteria.

Major Credit Card Issuers in India:

There are five major credit card issuers in India. Generally, your bank will issue a credit card from any of these five brands.

  • Visa International: Most banks in India will issue a Visa-branded credit card. Visa is accepted by over 38 million merchants worldwide.
  • MasterCard: Almost every bank in India offers MasterCard credit cards. A MasterCard can be used at over 38 million merchants around the world.
  • Diners Club: This was the first credit card to be issued in India, in the mid-1970s. However, Diners Club cards are issued by select banks only.
  • American Express: American Express, also called Amex is a top brand of credit cards internationally. You can get an Amex card from mainly from private Indian banks or directly from American Express India. Using an Amex credit card may not be possible at several locations in India.
  • RuPay: Just in case you are unaware, India’s homegrown brand of financial services, RuPay, also issues credit cards. Currently, they are available only from State Bank of India. RuPay is a brand launched by the Indian government and the National Payments Corporation of India. It is valid in India only with plans to extend usage worldwide.

Categories of Credit Cards

Generally, there are various categories of credit cards that banks issue.

Factors including your age, educational qualifications, profession, income and location as well as credit scores are taken into consideration before a bank decides whether or not to issue a credit card.

And if it does, which category of card you are eligible for. Here are some broad categories of credit cards in India.

  • Classic: These are entry-level credit cards issued by banks to persons with good credit scores. A Classic credit card is usually issued to a person with minimum qualifying income.
  • Silver: A Silver credit card is usually given to first time applicants. They entitle the holder to a credit limit worth one or two-month monthly salary only.
  • Gold: This type of credit card is the most common. It will usually be available as an upgrade of the Classic or Silver credit card, provided the user has solid spending and impeccable repayment history. Gold credit cards are very common in India.
  • Titanium: Titanium credit cards are usually issued to persons with higher income and good credit score. They come with a slew of benefits such as loyalty points on every spending and complimentary accident insurance, among others. Usually, the brand ‘Titanium’ credit card is used by MasterCard.
  • Platinum: There is not much difference between a Titanium and Platinum credit card. Usually, the only difference would be additional benefits and a higher credit limit. A ‘Platinum’ credit card is a brand from Visa International.
  • Invitation Only Cards: Usually, ‘invitation only cards’ are very exclusive. You cannot apply for them: instead, the bank or issuer has to invite you to avail the card. Invitation only cards come with very high annual membership fee like Rs.200,000 and one-off membership of Rs.250,000 among others. They are strictly for high net worth individuals and offer several exclusive benefits.

Here, it is worth remembering, the bank or issuer will decide on the type of card you can get.

Also, the branding like ‘Silver’, ‘Gold’, ‘Platinum’ differs according to the issuer or bank. Therefore, the credit card you hold does not actually reflect your income or financial status.

Only ‘Invitation Only’ cards are a genuine reflection of a person’s financial standing since they are available to very high net worth individuals such as businessmen and industrialists.

Add-On or Supplementary Credit Cards

Very often, a bank or issuer can offer you something called Add-On or Supplementary credit card. An Add-On or Supplementary credit card is usually for your closest family members, especially spouse and children above 12 years of age.

An Add-On or Supplementary credit card does not have its own, independent credit limit. Instead, it shares your credit limit with your spouse and kids.

In simple words, when your spouse or child spends on an Add-On or Supplementary credit card, the money is debited from your credit limit.

The primary cardholder is responsible for all expenses made on an Add-On or Supplementary credit card issued to the spouse and children.

Add-On or Supplementary credit cards also pack the same benefits that you get as the primary holder.

For example, loyalty points for spending on an Add-On or Supplementary credit card will be credited to your account only.

Some banks offer complimentary group accident insurance to holders of Add-On or Supplementary cards.

Specific Benefit Credit Cards

As I mention earlier, banks and issuing companies in India offer customized solutions for their credit card members.

If you are looking at specific benefits from your credit card, here are some types that you may consider.

  • Fuel Credit Cards: With gasoline prices on the upswing, fuel credit cards are growing very popular among vehicle owners in India. They allow you to get some discount at petrol stations.
  • Travel Credit Cards: Airlines and above all, Indian Railways, have excellent cobranded credit cards that offer a slew of benefits for frequent travellers. If you wish to save on travel expenses or enjoy related benefits, apply for a travel credit card.
  • Shopping Credit Cards: Understandably, you can shop with any credit card. But if you wish to stretch your spending and get maximum from every Rupee, apply for cashback credit cards. The issuer gives you points for every Rupee you spend. These points are worth cash.
  • Cobranded credit cards: These are credit cards that are issued by banks with a particular brand or company. They allow you to save a lot of money while making purchases online or offline
  • Lifestyle Credit Cards: Usually, a lifestyle credit card is for upmarket clients. Privileges include discounts on air travel, rebates at expensive restaurants and hotels, fitness clubs and boutiques.
  • Entertainment Credit Cards: If you are a movie fan and love dining out, opt for an entertainment credit card. It allows you to save on movie and entertainment tickets and offers hefty discounts on dining.
  • Contactless Credit Card: Very few banks in India currently offer a contactless credit card. A contactless credit card allows you to on a Point of Sale (POS) machine. All you need to do is wave your card before the machine.
  • Credit Cards by Profession: This is the latest trend in India. Some banks now offer special credit cards for customers from various professions such as doctors and teachers. Following an Indian government directive, special credit cards are also available now to farmers, to help buy seeds, fertilizers and other essentials.
  • Student Credit Cards: Nowadays, even college students can get credit cards. In some cases, your parents may have to keep a fixed deposit with the bank as collateral for your credit card.
  • Partnership Credit Cards: A lot of banks do not have their own credit cards. Hence, they offer partnership credit cards. This means, your bank will have an agreement with another one that issues a credit card. The credit card itself will bear names and logos of both banks.
  • Domestic Credit Cards: Normally, domestic credit cards are issued for people who will not travel abroad. They are valid in India and sometimes in Nepal and Bhutan too. You can make online purchases within India with these domestic credit cards.
  • International Credit Cards: As the term implies, international credit cards can be used in India and worldwide. These are the most common type of credit cards issued by banks. You can use them in any foreign currency. Charges will be converted into Indian Rupees. You also have to pay an extra fee for international usage.
  • Invitation Only Cards: These credit cards are available on invitation only, as I explain earlier. They are for very high net worth individuals. They offer a wholly exclusive range of benefits that are needed for the extremely wealthy individual.

Cloned Credit Cards: Growing Threat

Regardless of which type of credit card you hold, take every step to ensure its safety.

Never disclose Personal Identification Number and other details to unknown persons. This is because cloned credit card crimes in India are on the rise.

Sadly, India ranks among the top five countries with credit card fraud. Also, beware of persons offering you a cloned credit card for a small fee. It is illegal to possess and own a cloned credit card.

You can get into some very serious trouble with the law for possessing or using a cloned credit card.

Further, online thefts of credit card details are also on the rise in India. Point of Sale machines is also not quite safe.

Wrap Up

Now that you are aware of different types of credit cards in India, it is possible to make the best choice while applying for one.

Also, if you are hoping to get more benefits from your credit card, you can select one that offers the best solutions.

Credit cards are excellent to have provided you can use them with prudence. Else, having a credit card with unpaid dues can land you in serious financial doldrums and severely damage a credit score.

What is Credit Card? Difference between Credit & Debit cards?

credit cards vs debit cards

The term ‘credit card’ is something you may be hearing or seeing daily. Nowadays, it is a very common and acceptable form of paying for bills and purchases.

About 21 percent of all payments worldwide are made with credit cards, according to various sources.

In fact, credit cards rank as the third most favourite mode of payment among consumers and businesses around the world.

Understandably, you may be owning a credit card. Or you might be considering applying for one. Therefore, here are some interesting facts to inform you what is a credit card.

What is Credit Card?

credit cards

Credit cards are often called ‘plastic money’ or simply ‘plastics.’ A credit card is issued by a bank, financial company or a large chain of stores. A credit card allows you to pay bills or make purchases.

In simplest terms, a credit card works on the principle: ‘Buy Now, Pay Later.’ When you pay with a credit card, the issuer allows you to repay the money within 20 to 45 days.

The number of days you can enjoy credit is at the discretion of the issuer. They will inform you in advance of the exact date by which you need to repay the amount.

Types of Credit Card

Broadly speaking, there are two types of credit cards.

  • Physical:

This is a credit card made of PVC, a kind of plastic. These are the most common types of credit cards in circulation around the world.

They have a 16-digit unique number embossed on the front, an electronic chip that contains your financial information, magnetic strip for swiping at Point of Sale (POS) machine and a paper strip that bears your signature.

There is also a three-digit CVV or card verification code for online transactions. Some credit cards also carry your picture to prevent misuse. Worldwide, all credit cards are of a standard size: 85.60mm X 53.98mm.

  • Digital:

With online banking and countries moving towards paperless economy, you can also get a digital credit card. A digital credit card will appear on a special app provided by the issuing bank or financial organization.

The numbers are concealed for additional safety. A digital credit card will not have features of a physical one.

Instead, it will have a QR code that a merchant will scan to get payment.

You need to key-in a four or six digit Personal Identification Number (PIN) and verify the payment with a One Time Password (OTP) sent to your smartphone. They also have a three digit CVV for online transactions.

Credit Card Issuers

Worldwide, credit cards are issued by several organizations. They do so independently or in collaboration with banks and financial organizations.

Two of the largest credit card issuers worldwide include:

  • Visa International
  • MasterCard

Other credit card issuers are:

  • Diners Club
  • Discovery
  • American Express
  • Japan Credit Bureau (JCB)
  • China Union Pay
  • RuPay (India)

Additionally, several large stores worldwide also issue their own credit cards to customers that have good credit scores.

The system of stores issuing credit cards is most common in the US. Giant retailers including Walmart, Target, Kohl’s and others issue their own credit cards for clients that are independent of any financial organization or bank.

For many people around the world, getting a credit card might prove difficult due to any reason. Yet, if you do wish to pay using ‘plastic’ or use alternatives to cash, you can use a debit card.

What Are Debit Cards?


Financial companies that issue credit cards also issue debit cards. Only, stores and other entities do not issue debit cards since they are not authorized to keep your money like a bank.

Debit cards rank as the second most preferred option worldwide to pay bills or make a purchase.

Debit cards are also issued by banks and financial institutions where you hold an account and have funds.

The plastic card you use at an ATM to withdraw cash or make transactions is also called a debit card. It allows you to pay bills or make purchases in place of cash.

You can use a debit card to pay bills or buy something only if you have sufficient money in your bank account.

When you make the payment, this money is instantly debited from your bank balance. Hence the term ‘debit card’.

It is a very safe mode of payment since you do not have to worry about paying something later.

Types of Debit Cards

Debit cards are also available in two variants.

  • Physical:

A physical debit card is made of PVC, bears a unique 16-digit number and an electronic chip, paper strip for signature and magnetic strip for swiping. They have a three-digit card verification code for online transactions.

  • Digital:

A digital debit card is issued by banks that are online and provide apps for mobile banking. These cards also have a 16-digit unique number but do not bear your signature.

Once again, payment is by scanning a QR code and verifying through OTP. Digital debit cards also have a three-digit CVV for confirming online transactions.

Difference Between Credit Card and Debit Card

A credit card and debit card have several similarities. They are of the same size. To a layperson, the difference may not be apparent easily. However, here are some major comparision between a credit card and debit card.

  • A credit card allows you to buy now and pay later. You can pay for something even if you do not have sufficient cash at hand or bank balance.
  • Credit facility is not available with debit cards: the amount of your bill or shopping is debited instantly from your bank balance.
  • Studies worldwide show that people land in credit card debts because they end up spending on stuff they do not really need or are unable to control extravagant habits.
  • People with debit cards do not overspend because they know that cash in their account is limited.
  • Banks and financial institutions will check your credit score before issuing a credit card. Therefore, people with poor credit scores might be unable to get a credit card.
  • Debit cards are issued by banks to every account holder. They will never check your credit score before issuing a debit card. Hence, everyone can get a debit card.
  • Banks and financial institutions will charge a stiff fee for any cash withdrawals at ATMs made using credit cards. This is because credit cards are primarily to avail credit for shopping and paying bills.
  • You will not be charged a fee for cash withdrawals at ATMs made with debit card, provided you are within limits of the permitted free transactions. This fee varies according to bank and your location. Banks with fewer ATMs do not charge fees if you exceed the number of free withdrawals in any particular month.
  • Cash withdrawals on credit cards come with a preset limit. Meaning, you cannot avail of cash advance on a credit card over a specified amount.
  • There is no limit to the amount of money you can withdraw on a debit card, as long as you have sufficient balance in the bank account.
  • There are no prepaid credit cards. However, some banks may seek a security such as Fixed Deposit or other collaterals as security for your credit before issuing a credit card.
  • Banks and financial organizations also issue prepaid debit cards. These are usually for travelers such as forex cards, and people making online purchases. Prepaid debit cards allow you to load only a specific amount of money that can be refilled anytime.
  • Large financial institutions that issue credit cards also issue debit cards. Only, stores and other organizations that are not permitted legally to keep cash deposits from customers cannot issue debit cards.
  • Failing to pay credit card dues on time will attract heavy Average Purchase Rate (APR) or interest. This can go as high as 28 percent to 32percent depending upon the card you hold. If you do not pay the full amount and opt for minimum payment only, the unpaid sum attracts heavy interest or APR.
  • Debit card holders do not have to worry about paying APR or interest on their purchases. The amount is debited as soon as they make a transaction. Hence, there is no interest burden on debit card purchases.
  • Delays and defaults in paying credit card outstanding amounts can cause you legal problems. The bank or financial institution can file litigation at a court to recover its money. Additionally, recovery agents from credit card issuers can harass you at home and office in some countries till you repay the due amount.
  • Debit card users do not have to worry about delays and defaults in payments and any legal proceedings. The money has already been paid and banks or financial organizations have no right to take you to court.
  • The number of frauds involving credit cards is much higher than those with debit cards.
  • You cannot reserve hotels and certain other facilities in advance using a debit card. They will only accept a credit card to ensure that cancellation fees if any, can be charged.
  • You can get a credit card from banks and financial institutions with whom you have no bank account. Debit cards are issued only when you are the customer of the bank or financial institution and have an account.
  • A prepaid debit card with a fixed amount can be given as a gift to someone. You cannot gift a credit card to anyone.
  • Some banks issue ‘instant-card’ type debit cards, if you lose one. These debit cards do not carry your name. No credit card will ever be issued without your identity.

There are some other minor differences too between a credit card and a debit card. The first is branding. For example, a Visa debit card might bear the logo of Visa Plus while that issued by MasterCard will have a logo that says ‘Maestro.’

Similarities Between Credit Card & Debit Card

Despite these major differences, there are also some similarities in credit cards and debit cards. Here we explore some of these.

  • You can get a credit card or debit card for use within your country or internationally.
  • Both, credit card and debit card issuers charge an annual service fee. Some issuers waive the fee for the first year.
  • It is possible to give add-on or supplementary credit and debit cards to your spouse and children. The credit or money they can spend remains the same as in your bank account or the given credit limit.
  • All stores and merchants accept both- credit card and debit card- for payments.
  • You can limit the amount of losses suffered on credit card or debit card if they are stolen. To do so, you need to alert the issuing bank or financial organization immediately and file an appropriate complaint with the police.
  • Nowadays, credit cards and debit cards come with loyalty programs and freebies such as complimentary accident insurance.
  • Whether you are paying with credit card or debit card, the merchant has the right to seek proof that you are indeed its rightful and legal holder.
  • Depending upon where you live, merchants can charge a small fee when you pay with a debit card or credit card.
  • Both credit cards and debit cards will attract various fees when you use them abroad. These include differences in the exchange rate and foreign transaction charges, among others.
  • You can set daily, weekly or monthly spending limits on both credit card and debit card to ensure extra protection and prevent overspending. The bank will alert you when this limit is reached.

Wrap Up

As we highlight, there are several differences and similarities between a credit card and debit card.

Often, we require both to meet our financial commitments. While debit cards have several advantages, a credit card ensures you do not run out of money when you need it desperately for any emergency.

Take those that best suit your personal financial requirements. While every account holder of a bank will surely have a debit card, applying for a credit card is optional.

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