We all have bank accounts, debit cards and credit cards. Some of us have these courtesy our salary accounts where we normally do not have a choice or some ardent salesman whom we could not shrug off. If we did have a choice what would we want in these products?
In the case of bank accounts, the features that would typically be in a wish list are as follows:
- High interest rate for savings account.
- Minimum balance requirement should be nil or very less.
- Customized products, services and upgrades depending on loyalty and size of account.
- Personalized services.
- Usage of innovative and friendlier technology
Some of the banks with interesting services are:
- Yes Bank and Kotak Mahindra Bank give 6.00% and 5.50% respectively on savings accounts with balance less than Rs. 100,000. For balances above Rs. 100,000 the rates are 7% and 6% respectively. Other banks do not match this figure.
- State Bank of India (SBI) has done away with the minimum balance criteria for saving banks account. Other banks charge a penalty if one does not retain on an average the minimum monthly/quarterly balance specified.
- When it comes to online banking, Citibank India has a really good internet banking facility. There is multi level security, ease of use, no multiple registrations when it comes to adding new services like trading in mutual funds. There are no additional charges for purchase and sale of Mutual funds units
In credit cards the features that we as customers would typically like are – No/Low annual fees; Customized reward points, Eligibility criteria and last but not the least a high credit limit.
Here are some credit cards worth taking a look and maybe even having them:
- Credit cards from Citibank generally have a 55 day credit period. Most other banks have the credit period around 48-52 days.
- The American Express Gold card is high on reward points for customers. You get 1000 points if you use it once a week. You get points on purchase of grocery, fuel, travel and utility bills. At the end of one year of usage of the card, you get additional 5000 points. There are discounts of up to 20% in premium in fine dining restaurants. It also boasts of intelligence wherein the limit gets adjusted depending on payment behavior and spending patterns.
- Citibank Jet Airways CitiBusiness Credit Card is another interesting card. It is perfect if you are a corporate executive who has to travel frequently. You earn 2 points for every Rs. 100 spent and double the points for tickets booked on Jet Airways. Since it is a travel oriented card, card holders have special access to airport lounges, additional baggage allowance etc. The icing on the cake is that the credit limit is Rs. 1,000,000 and as of now there is no joining fees or annual fees.
Citi Premier Miles card where you get the following benefits
- Get 10000 Miles as soon as the first transaction of Rs. 1000 is made
- Get 10 Miles for every Rs 100 spent on airlines.
- Get 4 Miles for every Rs 100 of all other spends.
- Redeem miles across airlines on www.premiermiles.co.in
- Redeem miles up to 3 hours before take off
- Other features like access to airport lounges, offers on movie tickets etc.
Amex Platinum Travel Card
- Get a bonus of 5000 points if the joining fees is paid
- Get 1 point for every Rs. 40 spent
- Free two supplementary cards are given.
- If you spend Rs.190,000 in a year, you get two return flights of Indigo worth Rs. 6,000. Of course it has to be seen which two return flights you will get for this amount. I suppose you will end up paying the balance
- If you spend Rs. 400,000, you get a voucher worth Rs. 10,000 for a 2 nights stay. Over and above this amount, you have to pay and it does not seem to allow a one night stay.
Many banks have special privileges on Gold cards and Platinum cards. You must try to upgrade to these type cards by calling up the bank as the normal cards do not have too many offers/goodies for the customer. If you become a preferred customer or get a high priority status, you can avail of more benefits as a credit card customer.
To summarize, try to get the best benefits out of your Banking Relationship across Saving Accounts, Fixed Deposits & Credit Cards.
Do let us know your experiences of banking and using credit cards
Team Getting You Rich