Name of Credit Card
Jet Airways ICICI Bank Sapphiro AMEX Credit Card
Features and Benefits
Provided by ICICI Bank for Indian residents only.
On enrolment – 10,000 Bonus JP miles and on renewal – 5000 Bonus JP miles
Benefit of 5 JPMiles per INR 100 on domestic spending and 7 JPMiles per INR 100 on international spending
Discounts on base fare for certain national and international tickets
Access to select airport lounges
Complimentary excess baggage and dedicated check-in in certain airports
Complimentary golf games, movie tickets and discounts in restaurants
Concierge service is available for travel arrangements.
The joining fee is Rs. 5,000 and the renewal fee is also Rs. 5,000.
The travel benefits are limited to Jet Airways.
The number of JPMiles that can be collected in a year is restricted to 60000. You can add more if you pay Rs. 7500. This is restrictive for customers.
The interest is on the higher side and there is restriction on the number of miles that you can collect. Travel benefits are available only if you use Jet Airways. Unless you love playing golf, there are other cards that you can consider.
Jet Airways American Express® Platinum Credit Card
Features and Benefits
Issued by American Express for all above 18 years old who have a permanent residential address in India and earn more than Rs. 6,00,000 per annum.
Joining Reward of 10,000 JPMiles and a one way ticket for domestic travel with base fare waived.
Benefit of 8 JPMiles for every Rs. 150 spent.
Access to 13 domestic airport lounges
Membership in certain preferred hotels and resorts.
1 Night Complimentary stay in Oberoi Hotels and Resorts if you book 2 or 3 consecutive nights stay.
5% Discount on base ticket fare and excess baggage waiver up to 5kg on domestic flights.
Concierge service available.
Joining Fee – Rs. 5,000. Renewal fee – Rs. 10,000
The interest rate on outstanding balances is 3.35% which is on the higher side.
Travel benefits are restricted to Jet Airways.
If you use Jet Airways flights frequently, you can consider the card though the renewal fees are very high.
American Express® Platinum Travel Credit Card
Features and Benefits
Issued by American Express for all above 18 years old who have a permanent residential address in India and earn more than Rs. 6,00,000 per annum.
Joining reward of 5,000 Milestone Bonus Points which can be used for travel vouchers of up to Rs. 4,000
4 complimentary visits per annum to any of the 30 lounges in 12 cities.
Discounts on bookings made on www.makemytrip.com and on dining in various restaurants
The value of vouchers for travel that you get for redeeming milestone reward points are higher as compared to other cards or using those points on other purchases.
Joining fee – Rs. 3,500 and annual fee of Rs. 5,000.
Travel vouchers can be used only for domestic flights.
Travel vouchers can be redeemed only if you book via the American Express travel site. They are valid only for 6 months after issuance.
Interest rate on late payments is 3.5%
The joining fees and renewal fees are competitive. There are restrictions on travel vouchers that you get though the value is higher as compared to other cards. So if you are able to use the travel vouchers to your best advantage, the card is good.
JetPrivilege HDFC Bank Diners Club
Features and Benefits
It is offered by HDFC Bank to salaried persons between the ages of 21 and 60 years and self-employed persons between the ages of 21 and 60 years.
On joining, the card holder gets 30,000 bonus JPMiles.
8 JPMiles earned for every Rs. 150 spent and thrice that number for spends on www.jetairways.com
Access to over 550 lounges in airports across the world.
Premiere check-in and excess baggage allowance and discounts on base fare of air tickets.
Access to golfing in India and abroad
Concierge services and 15% discount in many restaurants.
Joining fees - Rs. 10,000
Renewal fees – Rs. 5,000
The joining fee is very high and travel benefits are restricted to Jet Airways.
Joining fees is high. Interest rate is low at 1.99% per month on outstanding dues. If you travel in India and abroad and use Jet Airways often and you like golf, it is a good card to consider.
Executive Summary: Many of us like travelling. Some of us have to travel for work as well. Travel credit cards are lifestyle cards that offer many travel related features which can help us derive more value from our travels. We have compared 4 travel based credit cards here - Jet Airways ICICI Bank Sapphiro AMEX Credit Card, Jet Airways American Express® Platinum Credit Card, American Express® Platinum Travel Credit Card and JetPrivilege HDFC Bank Diners Club.
You always want to play your cards right, be it your job or relationships or even holidays. This is true in the case of credit cards too. If you get the right card as per your lifestyle, you derive a lot of value. Here we have compared some travel based credit cards-
If you travel a lot for business and pleasure, getting a travel based card can be rewarding. Do let us know if you use travel based credit cards and your experience with them.
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Planning for vacation can be a tedious job. While planning one can explore different websites for budget packages, read review on travel blogs. One should plan it financially by including it as a goal in financial plan. However, one should never take loan for funding vacation.
With winter holidays approaching, people have started planning for the short trip to nearby destination. Going on exotic vacation need proper planning and require thorough research and very few people are successful in planning it well. People go over budget on vacation and thus fail to enjoy it fully.
Many people do not take vacations often enough due to work, time and money problem. They think that vacation will cost a lot of money. Yes, it will cost a lot of money and with the continuous increase in the hotel rent, travelling cost and food cost, it will cost more every year but if they plan it well in advance then they can enjoy and feel relaxed during and after the vacation. So, how to plan for a vacation?
Someone said “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step” and there is no better time than now to start planning, so let’s discuss in brief the points to consider while planning for a vacation.
1. Finding hotels expensive? Try “Airbnb” – Most of the times people find it difficult to get a budget hotel for their stay. Even the websites which claim to list budget hotels are sometimes very expensive. However, with the options like “Airbnb”, now people can find a single room or whole apartment at much cheaper rate than hotel. People who have extra rooms in their apartment, they rent it out at very reasonable cost for business travellers and families. If your stay is getting extended one can even book room for a week or fortnight. Few even allow you to cook your own food.
2. Online Travel Portals can help you save a lot – Very less people have a habit of visiting websites for a proper travel package. They do not understand that it can save them lot of money and time. Many websites like Groupon, Makemytrip.com and Expedia can help you in finding attractive deals and packages all across the year.
3. Follow reviews on different portals and blogs – On the travel portals one can find reviews of the different destinations. You can actually get to know about the best time to travel to the place, list of tourist spots in that city, hotels and the food of the place. Also there are many travel blogs available on which people share their experience about vacation. This exercise can help you in saving a lot of time and money during your visit.
4. Keep a separate goal for vacation in your Financial Plan – There are many families who plan to go for local vacation once in a year and international vacation every 5 – 6 years. While local vacation can be planned with small saving deposits, the international vacation goal can be included in your financial plan and savings can be done through proper asset allocation with a proper mix of equity and debt.
5. Taking loan for vacation is a bad idea: During vacation season, many banks and financial institution offer loans to travel overseas. Sometimes people also take a loan on their insurance policies to go on vacation. This is the wrong approach. Instead one can plan in advance for the vacation by saving little amount every month.
The planned vacation can be more exiting when you are less worried about expenses and location. Please remember you don’t have to be Richie rich to enjoy a great vacation. The perfect mix of family and friends with little planning can also make your trip memorable. It does not matter where you go for vacation, what matter is how you enjoy your quality time and collect great memories.
So how do you plan your vacation? Do you include vacation goal in your financial plan? Please share your views.
This was originally published on Moneycontrol. The author can be reached at email@example.com
We have come a long way from the annual vacation to their native place as the only holiday trip taken during the year. People are open to different experiences. People explore different locations in India like Kashmir, Ladakh, Goa etc. as well as destinations abroad from Bangkok to Brazil and New York to Sydney. A survey by TripAdvisor has shown that the number of Indians travelling abroad has risen by 21% in the first half of 2014. The survey also showed that many prefer to take holiday packages as they tend to be more pocket friendly and people also get overwhelmed by the information on the Internet to decide the itinerary properly.
Vacations have evolved from being just an annual trip to a particular place and visit a couple of tourist spots. Travel companies have understood that each person is different and wants a different vacation depending on his interests, travel companions and events around the world.
Family Vacations – Family vacations are fun and they can create fond memories. Family members can bond with one another. If you are planning a vacation with your children or parents, you need to have a mix of various experiences like sightseeing, visiting amusement parks, visits to the zoo and some shopping so that the entire family has a memorable time. Most travel companies have tailor made holiday packages depending on the audience. For instance, Kesari can tailor different itineraries for Singapore depending on whether it is a family holiday or a honeymoon. A holiday package is better for a family holiday as meals will be taken care of and transportation will be pre-arranged which is good if you have older people or children with you.
Adventure Holidays – Some of you love adrenaline charged activities to have a memorable vacation. There are plenty of adventure options – Scuba diving in the Andamans, Swimming with Whale Sharks in Maldives, Trekking in the Himalayas or Bungee Jumping in Macau and more. If any of these get your heart pumping, you should go for an adventure holiday. Local travel companies and global giants like Thomas Cook offer adventure holiday packages. Thrillopia offers camps in Rishikesh where you can do overnight camping, kayaking and white water rafting in the mighty Ganges. Trekking organizations have treks in different parts of the country all year around. You can join one of these for a walk with nature. You can take a look at INDIAHIKES and GIO adventures for options and prices. There are many small local travel companies that arrange for adventure sports. If you know someone locally, you can contact them. It is better and safer to go in a group and with guides who know the area. It is also important to select a tour operator who has quality equipment and does not compromise on safety gear.
Religious Tours – Some people prefer to go for spiritual and religious tours to pay their respects to God and to get reconnected to faith. There are travel operators who specialize in these packages.
Theme Holidays – Just visiting popular vacation spot is passé for some of us today. Travel companies now offer theme based vacations. The theme could be based on books, history or culinary experiences. People take a 'Lord of the Rings' vacation tour in New Zealand as the movie was made there. Many places offer wine tasting vacations where you can visit vineyards, learn more about wine and sample fine wines.
Event based Holidays – There is a special thrill in watching live events be it an F1 race or the Football World Cup or visiting places for special events like being part of the Oktoberfest in Munich. If you are a tennis fan, you can plan next year's vacation in London with the Wimbledon in your itinerary and watch the players in white fight for glory while you enjoy your strawberries and cream. Cox and Kings had sold customized packages to Brazil for the Football World Cup in India. British travel company Gullivers has vacation packages for several sporting events like Formula 1 and ICC Cricket World Cup 2015.
Here are some tips as you plan the vacation -
Look out for smart tips from friends and families who have been there.
What kind of vacation do you prefer to take? How do you manage your finances so that the vacation truly rejuvenates your spirit, body and mind?
The article is originally published on moneycontrol. The author can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Executive Summary: Planning finances while travelling abroad is not easy for most people. Deciding your budget beforehand, making reservations in advance, using deals and offers, making smart currency decisions, choosing an offbeat destination, travelling during off peak season, packing smartly and keeping a check on your local expenses can help in making your vacation less expensive.
Travelling overseas is always exciting and on everyone’s To-Do list. Seeing new places, experiencing new cultures and meeting new people is something all of us want to do. But it should be kept in mind that an overseas vacation doesn’t happen easily for most of us. Atleast on the financial side. It is important to plan your finances when you consider holidaying at an international destination. Here are some quick tips to plan your finances for an overseas vacation:
Decide your budget: Many people do not estimate a budget, and as a result, spend more during the trip. Agreed, that it may not be possible to plan with exact precision. But without a realistic budget, there may be a tendency to spend impulsively on unnecessary things. Include an emergency budget to cover unexpected expenses like a doctor’s visit or if your luggage is misplaced.
Make reservations in advance: An overseas vacation should be planned beforehand. Ideally, you must make your flight and accommodation reservations well in advance. This not only ensures that you get good rates on tickets and hotel rooms, but is also a good check on how much you spend. Determining your budget and making your booking in advance can help to avoid unnecessary expenses.
Make use of deals and offers: Booking a holiday through a travel agent is less cumbersome, but can work out to be quite expensive. Instead, try to do your own research and look out for ongoing deals and discounts. It is important to research your options well and understand what suits your needs the best. Plan your itinerary in advance, especially details on the place you want to visit, mode of local travel, where you plan to eat, etc. Having these details in place can enable you to have control on your budget to a great extent. The popularity of the internet has resulted in many travel websites which give you a host of discounts and offers on hotel rooms, air tickets, car rentals, etc. You may get attractive deals on each of these categories from different websites.
Currency decisions: In today’s world of plastic money, it is not advisable or convenient to carry around cash. At the same time, one must avoid excessive use of credit cards as well. Not only do you not have a control on the exchange rate used, but also end up paying an extra fee as well. Instead opt for travellers cheques. International debit card is another alternative you can consider since what you spend is instantly debited from your account. This prevents excessive spending. If you are disciplined in your credit card usage, you can consider using cards which are specific travel cards. This can get you reward points and cash back offers during your overseas travel spend.
Choose an offbeat destination: Everyone wishes to travel to Hawaii and Switzerland, how many people can actually afford it? There are many equally exotic destinations, which are offbeat, and as a result less expensive. It is therefore always advisable to choose a destination based on your budget. You could opt for more luxurious destinations when you have surplus funds or lower commitments.
Opt for travel in off peak season: All destinations have a peak and off peak season, based on the climate, festivals and other factors. Try to plan your travel just before or after the peak season. This can get you discounts on hotels, travel and other trips. However, check the downsides of travelling in the off peak season and make your decision.
Pack smartly: Always pack light when you travel overseas. Extra luggage is not only uncomfortable, but will also be charged extra by airlines. Check for laundry facilities at your accommodation or plan a smart mix and match of your clothes.
Be prudent in local expenses: More often than not, it is what you spend locally during your trip that can hurt your pocket. This is because most people do not plan for this in advance. Smart planning of such expenses can reduce your overall trip expenses. For example, make use of public transport wherever possible. If your destination is close-by, you can consider walking. This gives you a chance to explore the city and also save transport costs. If you have an international license, hiring a car is a good idea. If not, you can make use of modern start-ups like Uber to travel locally. Transportation or package tours arranged by hotels can be more expensive. Avoid eating at expensive restaurants and try the local food instead. Download a translation app to help you understand important words in the local language. Of course, you will need to be careful while eating street food. Alternatively, you can find out if there is a facility to order food online. This can also work out to be cheaper than splurging at fancy restaurants. If you wish to buy souvenirs, enquire where you will find it at a lower cost. Usually tourist attractions charge a higher price for the souvenir.
This article was originally published on Moneycontrol. The author can be reached at email@example.com
You require foreign currency when you travel abroad. You can get foreign currency in cash or use different cards like prepaid cards and debit and credit cards.You should take foreign currency only from authorised dealers to avoid getting trapped in fraudulent activities.
When you are going abroad for work, education or leisure, you need to make lot of preparations and one of the most important things is to arrange for foreign exchange or Forex. You need money in the currency of the country you are visiting to take care of your needs. Let us see the details of foreign exchange, how to buy it and so on.
1. Where should I buy foreign exchange from?
You should buy foreign exchange ONLY from authorized dealers. RBI has given authority to some dealers, banks and Full Fledged Money Changers to deal in foreign currency. They charge a commission for buying and selling foreign exchange. Forex dealers charge lower commission compared to banks. There will be some private dealers who might charge lower for the foreign exchange but they could be illegal. You should not buy from foreign residents as well.
2. How much foreign currency am I allowed?
The amount of foreign currency that you can take depends on the purpose of our visit.
- If you are going on a private visit (e.g. Tourism), you are allowed to obtain maximum foreign currency worth USD 10,000 per calendar year.
- If you are going for a business trip, you are allowed to take foreign currency up to worth USD 25,000 for one calendar year. Business trip includes attending conferences, seminars, training etc.
- If you are going for medical treatment, you can take up to USD 100,000 from authorized banks. You can take more provided you have an estimate from the doctor/hospital abroad.
- If you are going as a student, you can take foreign exchange up to the amount indicated by the educational institute that you are going to join.
- If you are going for employment or are emigrating to a new country, an amount up to USD 100,000 is allowed to be taken.
3. Can I use cards while travelling abroad?
You can use other means to meet your expenses as well. You can use international credit cards for expenses incurred abroad. The limit is fixed by the card issuing organization. International debit cards can be used in shops, restaurants etc. The exchange rate used will be the rate that prevails at that time. You will have to incur a currency conversion charge.
You can use prepaid forex cards as well. They are loaded with the cash you have asked for. There is no conversion charge unlike money changers or debit and credit cards.
It is good to use credit cards, debit cards or prepaid forex cards so that the risk of carrying so much cash can be avoided.
4. What kind of documentation should I have?
You normally require to take your passport to get foreign exchange. You should insist on a receipt for exchange received.
Hope this information helps you in your preparation to travel abroad. Have a safe trip!
The author can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
This article talks of a quick checklist when you travel abroad for holiday or work. These include taking a travel insurance, keeping travel documents and adequate foreign exchange, packing smart, making note of important contact details, taking care of things at home and being cognizant of country specific requirements.
Travelling abroad is both exciting and memorable. Whether you are travelling on business or for a holiday, for a short break or an extended period, it is important that you have a few basic things taken care of, before you embark on your journey. Here are some quick tips on the things you should remember while travelling abroad:
1. Travel Insurance: Travel insurance is undoubtedly an absolute must and tops the list of to-dos while travelling abroad. You can shop around and get the best policy available, depending on your needs and the cover required. It should most importantly cover theft, loss of possessions, accidents and illnesses. Sometimes, your existing medical insurance plan covers international travel. You may want to check this and decide accordingly. Watch this space for more details on travel insurance policies and comparison between the top policies in the market today.
2. Travel documents: Next come travel documents, which include your passport, visas, tickets and other related documents. Keep all this neatly organized in a separate folder or pouch, such that it is easily accessible. Check your passport validity. Generally you will not get a visa if the passport expiry is less than six months. But what if you go to a country which has ‘Visa on Arrival’? I knew of a friend whose passport validity was less than 6 months and arrived at the destination as it was a ‘Visa on Arrival’ country. But she couldn’t clear immigration. You don’t want to face such issues when you travel to a new country. Also, remember to keep two copies of all valid travel documents, so that you won’t be lost if your originals are misplaced.
3. Foreign exchange: It is important that you have sufficient local currency when you travel abroad. Buy foreign exchange from reputed dealers. Do your research well before you decide the dealer as there may be a wide variation in the rates you get. You should also carry an international debit and credit card. Call your Credit Card Company and bank to check the charges applicable for international transactions. You can also consider carrying traveller’s cheques which can be purchased from your bank before you leave.
4. Medicines and first aid kit: Medicines are critical, especially if they are prescribed drugs which you must absolutely take. Keep a separate pouch for medicines. Remember to keep a first aid kit also, having basic essentials like band-aid, painkillers and the like. If you are travelling with kids, make sure every medicine is readily available.
5. Note important telephone numbers: Another important requirement is to make note of all important telephone numbers in a pocket diary or notebook. This way, you will have access to important numbers even if you lose your phone. One important such contact is that of your bank. If you happen to lose your credit card or debit card, you must have the contact number handy to immediately call your bank and block the card.
6. Pack smart: It is recommended to travel light. Agreed, that this may not always be possible. Nevertheless, try to pack smartly. For example, if you are travelling with your spouse, don’t pack separately. Divide your clothes and your spouse’s clothes in two bags such that you can manage even if you lose one bag. Take extra polythene bags to put wet clothes or unwashed clothes. If you have the facility of a laundry service at the hotel, then reduce the clothes you take accordingly. Also remember to take clothes depending on the climate. Try and take non-bulky games for kids like playing cards or Frisbee which will not occupy much space. Innovate and pack smart.
7. Small backpack: Carry a small travel bag or backpack which is not too bulky to put your essentials when you go for sightseeing. Carry essentials like your wallet, passport, cash and mobile phone. It is always best to keep such things in a handy place.
8. Take care of things at home: Whether you leave for a short period or for many days, it is very important to take care of things at home before you step out. For example stop essentials like milk, paper, etc for the time you are away. If there is regular mail you get from some place, inform the concerned about your absence. Secure your house well, inform the security and unplug all electronics when you leave. Check for payments which may be due in your absence and pay such bills in advance to avoid unpleasant shocks when you return.
9. Plan connecting flights: Sometimes, you may be travelling to more than one destination. In such a case, you may need to catch connecting flights. Plan in such a way that there is sufficient time between such flights. Flight delays are common anywhere in the world and you don’t want your schedule to be upset because of improper planning.
10. Country specific requirements: Sometimes, some countries require proper inoculation if you want to visit. Understand these requirements and do the needful well in advance. Similarly, electric plugs and voltages are not the same in all countries. If needed, you will have to use an adapter or converter. If you have a relative in the place you plan to visit, this shouldn’t be a problem. If not, remember that all hotels do not offer this facility. You may find yourself unable to charge your phone or laptop for this reason. Similarly, you may not know the language of the place you are going to, and English is not spoken everywhere. Download a Translator App which will help you. Buy guidebooks, download maps and learn important words in the local language.
How was your experience when you travelled abroad? Let us know of any tips to include to this list.
The author can be reached at email@example.com
Backpacking is low-cost travelling to foreign countries. As the term indicates, it usually refers to travelling with simply a bag carried on your back. Some backpacking tips from a financial perspective are-
- Choosing an affordable country
- Decide on the itinerary
- Travel Light without valuable stuff
- Safety is important
- Stick to your budget by choosing accommodation, food to eat, transport options wisely
- Ensure you have money
Backpacking sounds adventurous and exciting. What does it mean? Backpacking is low-cost or budget travelling mostly to other countries independently with all your belongings in a backpack which can be easily carried by you over a long distance and/or for a long time. Backpacking is generally for a longer duration than your average vacation. It is not the usual holiday and therefore you will need to take care of certain things both from a financial and non-financial perspective.
Here are some backpacking tips -
Backpacking is a great way to travel, explore and learn about the customs, traditions and lives of people of a different country. Keep our money tips in mind and have a great trip.
The author can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org