best credit cards in India 2021

10+ Best Credit Cards in India for 2021 (with Pros, Cons, and Ratings)

If you are looking for the best credit cards in India for 2021, then you’ve surely landed on the right spot. In this blog, I am going to talk about the 10 most popular credit cards in India across different categories. 

After going through this in-depth article, you don’t need to think much about which is the best credit in India? I will highlight the major pros and cons of every card along with my personal advice. 

Despite this, remember that is no such credit card that suits all because every person has different spending capacity and buying patterns. Also, not everyone is ready to pay the high joining fees of credit cards.

As of writing this article, I’ve analyzed more than 50+ different credit cards from top banks in India, and based on that I’ve complied with this top 10 credit card in India list. I also run a youtube channel, Fintech Vishal – where I review the most popular credit cards in India. You can visit my YT channel for card close looks. 

I have given priority to reward point rate, cashback structure, bank customer services, and similar factors while preparing this list. 

If I’ve missed out on any of the popular credit card options, you can highlight them in the common section below and have your say. 

So, without further adieu, let’s get started: 

Best Lifetime Free Credit Cards in India 

Lifetime-free credit cards are immensely popular in India. By having these cards, you don’t need to worry about reaching the annual spend target on your card for getting a fee waiver. Some of the popular options in India are as follows: 

1. Amazon Pay ICICI Credit Card 

Noteworthy Features

  • 5% cashback on Amazon spends for prime users 
  • 3% cashback on Amazon spends for non-prime users
  • 2% cashback on flight booking, mobile recharge, utility bill payments, etc. 
  • 1% cashback on all other transactions 
  • Cashback is credited in Amazon pay wallet directly
  • 15% discount at ICICI partner restaurants

This is the best no-fee credit card in India. If you’re into online shopping and love getting direct cashback, this one is made for you. ICICI Bank and VISA people also run various offers on this card from time to time. 

Amazon Pay ICICI card application process is also superfast and paperless. You can apply for this card here. If you’re an Amazon Prime user, you should definitely check out this card as it offers 5% cashback when you purchase items from the Amazon app or website. 

Why Apply for this Card? 

  • Accelerated rewards on Amazon 
  • Lifetime free card 
  • Excellent customer service 
  • Fuel surcharge wavier

2. ICICI Bank Instant Platinum Credit Card 

Noteworthy Features

  • 2 PAYBACK points on every 100 Rs. spent on retail 
  • 100 Rs off on movie ticket bookings via BookMyShow (twice a month)
  • 15% discount at ICICI partner restaurants

It is a very popular lifetime free credit card in India from ICICI Bank. It is offered to most of the bank customers (with good cibil score and credit history) of ICICI Bank as a lifetime free option. You can also get this card against a fixed deposit. 

Why Apply for this Card? 

  • Lifetime free credit card
  • Decent PAYBACK reward program 
  • Good customer service 

3. IDFC First Millennia Credit Card 

Noteworthy Features 

  • 10X reward points on spend of 20K and above 
  • 6X reward points on online spends 
  • 3X reward points on offline spends 
  • 2 lakh personal accident cover 
  • 4 complimentary railway lounge access
  • Read IDFC First Mllennia credit card review here. 

Millennia credit card from IDFC first is among the four recently launched credit cards by IDFC First bank. The bank has made an entry into the Indian credit card industry with a bang this year by launching four lifetime free credit cards (ranging from entry-level to premium options) with the lowest APR charges (9 to 36%). The bank is also providing a 0.75 to 5% reward rate across all four credit cards (Classic, Millennia, Select, and Wealth). Currently, these cards are available for IDFC first bank customers only. Join the card waitlist here. 

Annual/Joining Fees: Nil 

Why Apply For this Card? 

  • Accelerated reward points on spends of 20K and more
  • Interest-free ATM cash withdrawal 
  • Lower Annual Interest Rate (9 to 36%)

Best Credit Cards in India for Online Shopping 

If you love to spend online look for eCommerce credit cards in India to get up to 10% cashback on every your every transaction. Amazon, Flipkart, Snapdeal, Paytm, and Google Pay have partnered with Indian banks recently to offer co-branded credit cards to their customers. 

4. Flipkart Axis Bank Credit Card 

Noteworthy Features

  • 5% unlimited cashback on Flipkart, Myntra and 2Gud 
  • 4% cashback on Preferred Merchants 
  • 1.5% cashback on all other transactions
  • Cashback is credited into the card statement
  • 2900 Rs. worth welcome gift vouchers (from Flipkart, Myntra, Gaana, etc.)
  • 4 Complimentary Airport lounge access (per calendar year)

For online shoppers, this card is an absolute delight as it offers 5% cashback (no upper cap) on Flipkart shopping transactions. You also get the no-cost EMI option (for 6 to 12 months, depending upon transaction value) on Flipkart. Spending 2 Lakh Rs. or above in the previous financial year result in card annual fees reversal for you. 

Annual fees: 500 Rs. + GST

Why Apply for this Card? 

  • Accelerated rewards on Flipkart and Myntra 
  • 1.5% cashback on all other spends 
  • Cashback and discounts offer on leading brands regularly
  • Airport lounge access 

5. Axis ACE Credit Card 

Noteworthy Features

  • 5% unlimited cashback on recharge and bill payments on Gpay application. 
  • 4% cashback on Zomato, Ola and Swiggy 
  • 2% cashback on other transactions
  • Cashback gets credited into card statement directly 
  • 1% Fuel surcharge waiver

Axis Ace is probably the best entry-level credit card in India in 2021 as it offers 2% cashback (no upper cap) on all transactions outside google pay and its preferred partner apps. 

Besides, you also get four complimentary domestic lounge access per calendar year, which makes it an absolute delight. Getting direct approval for this card is difficult. Try to get some basic credit card from Axis bank by opening a savings account and then upgrade to this one. 

Annual Fees: 500 Rs. + GST (spend 2 lakh or above for annual fees reversal)

Why Apply for This Card? 

  • Accelerated cashback on recharge and bill payments 
  • 2% universal cashback 
  • Domestic lounge access 

6. SBI Simply Click Credit Card 

Noteworthy Features

  • 10X reward points on Amazon and BookMyShow 
  • 5X reward points on online spends 
  • Reward rate: 1.25 to 2.5%
  • 1000 Rs gift voucher on 1 lakh online spends annually 

If you just spend around 1 lakh annually on online shopping, consider this card. It offers 2.5% cashback on Amazon and 1.25% cashback on all other online spends in form of reward points. The value of 1 reward point is 25 paisa. Besides, you will also become eligible for the 10% SBI discount offer, available on Flipkart/Amazon during online sales. 

I am using this card for the past year and have been able to get 4 cleartrip vouchers worth 2000 for spending 50K in a calendar quarter multiple times. 

Annual Fees: 500 Rs. + GST (reversal on 1 lakh annual spends)

Why Apply for this Card? 

  • Lower spends required for annual fees reversal 
  • Fuel surcharge wavier
  • Accelerated reward points on Amazon

Best Travel Credit Cards in India 

7. Citi PremierMiles Card 

Noteworthy features

  • 10 miles on every 100 rupees spent on airline transactions 
  • 8 miles per 100 rupees spend across Amazon, Flipkart & Myntra
  • 10,000 bonus welcome miles on card activation 
  • Transfer miles to hotel & airline partners 
  • Never expiring miles

This is one of the best travel credit cards in India where you get the option to transfer your miles/reward points for booking hotel/airline tickets. Popular options include Air India, British Airways, Jet Airways, Taj InnerCircle, etc. You also get lounge access, travel, and lifestyle concierge services with this card. 

Annual Fees: As applicable by the bank 

Why Apply for this Card? 

  • Accelerated reward points across travel and online shopping 
  • 26,000+ offers across travel, hotel, lifestyle, and online shopping categories
  • Easy EMI option 
  • 20% discount at CITI bank partner restaurants 

8. SBI IRCTC Credit Card 

Noteworthy Features

  • 10% reward rate on IRCTC app/website
  • 1% reward rate on other transactions 
  • 350 bonus points on card activation 

If you’re someone who travels by train a lot, then this card is a no-brainer as it offers up to 10% cashback on train ticket bookings via the IRCTC app and website. You also get 4 complimentary railway lounge access per calendar year, as well as, 1% transaction charge waiver on IRCTC bookings. 

Annual Fees: 500 Rs. + GST 

Renewal Fees: 300 Rs +GST 

Why Apply for this Card? 

  • Accelerated rewards on train tickets 
  • Fuel surcharge wavier
  • Railway lounge access 

Best Premium Credit Cards in India 

Premium credit cards are a great option when you’re looking for an all-in-one card that offers you good reward points across most of the categories. Such cards come with good travel, lounge, and reward point offers. Let’s look at the popular options in India: 

9. SBI Prime Amex Credit Card 

Noteworthy Features

  • 20 reward points on utility bill payments (standing instructions) 
  • 10 reward points on dining, groceries, departmental, and dining spends
  • Complimentary Trident Privilege red tier membership 
  • Complimentary Club Vistara membership 
  • 9 Vistara points on every 100 Rs. spend on Vistara fights
  • 4 international and 8 domestic airport lounge access
  • 3000 Rs welcome gift voucher (you can pick from Pantaloons, Lifestyle, Shoppers Stop, etc.)
  • 25% discount at American Express partner retail outlets 

This is one of the best lifestyle credit cards for people who spend heavily across dining, groceries, travel, departmental, and utility bills. You get 2.5 to 5% cashback across these categories in form of reward points. Besides excellent travel and welcome benefits, you also get  PizzaHut vouchers worth 1000 Rs on spending 50K in a calendar quarter. Adding to that, you also get a 7000 Rs voucher from Yatra/Pantaloons on annual spending of 5 Lakh. 

Annual Fees: 3000 Rs + GST 

Suggested Spend Range: 6 lakh+ 

What Apply For this Card? 

  • Excellent reward rate across travel, dining, and utility bills
  • Airport Lounge access  
  • Welcome gift voucher 
  • Club Vistara membership 

10. Amex MRCC Credit Card 

Noteworthy Features 

  • 1 membership reward point on every 50 Rs spend 
  • 4000 bonus membership points on card activation 
  • 1000 bonus points every calendar month on doing 4 transactions of Rs 1500 or more
  • Special 18K and 24K Gold Karat Categories for reward points redemption 
  • 20% discount at Amex partner restaurants 
  • Reward points on EMI conversions post-purchase 

Amex MRCC is among the best premium credit cards in India because of its excellent reward structure. By doing just four 1500 rupees transactions in a month, you can earn 1000 bonus points easily. And, reach the 18K membership points milestone (worth 7000 Rs. Amazon voucher/ 6000 Rs. statement credit ) in a year. Also, the 4500 Rs. annual fees can be easily waived off by spending 1.5 lakh Rs. in a calendar year. 

  • Joining Fees: 1000 Rs. (4000 bonus membership points on spending 15K in first 60 days after card activation)
  • Renewal Fees: 4500 Rs. (Spend 1.50 lakh Rs. annually for fees reversal)
  • Suggested Spend Range: 3 to 4 lakh

Why Apply for This Card? 

  • 18 and 24K Gold Karat Reward Points Collection 
  • Bonus membership points 
  • Multiple offers and discounts at Amex preferred partners 

Summing Up..!

Hope you’ve enjoyed this exciting list of the best credit cards in India for 2021. I have tried to add cards that give you maximum cashback, reward points, partner offers, and joining benefits to this list. Will try to update this list as the year moves ahead with new credit card launches.  

There are a lot of exciting credit card launches that are scheduled for 2021. So, keep watching this space for more updates. 

Also, you can comment down and provide your suggestions regarding this list. Did you like the credit cards mentioned above? Or, you have a different opinion? Whatever, it is just start the conversation below. I’ll be happy to answer 🙂

Bonus Content 

Follow my Youtube Channel for all the latest updates about credit card offers. 

If you’re interested in knowing about Indian stock market, visit my close friend’s blog. He has shared strategies about why invest in share market.

You can also checkout this particular blog to know more about how to build a website from scratch here.

To know best tips for how to stay superfit, you can visit this blog.

You can also visit this blog to learn about the most on-demand jobs of 2021.

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