Black rewards credit cards
Sick and tired of your boring old rewards credit card? Want a piece of plastic that can keep up with your life in the fast lane? Look no further than a black rewards card.
These cards are the pinnacle of rewards cards, with impressive points earning power and some really cool perks up for grabs. But all that luxury doesn’t come without a price tag, so before you decide to go all in with the creme de la creme of credit cards, check out the details below:
Black rewards card comparison - page last updated September 19, 2020
What is a black rewards card?
A black rewards card is the most exclusive of credit cards, a step above platinum plastic in the credit card hierarchy. A lot of black cards are shrouded in mystery - sometimes, you only really know what’s on offer when you’re extended an invitation to apply - which only adds to the appeal of carrying one.
What kind of spender should use a black rewards card?
These elite cards are not the right choice for every shopper, no matter how appealing the matte black finish and spending prestige might be. But one of these cards might be the right choice for you if you…
- Spend big. Black rewards cards come with high credit limits and serious rewards programs, but they also come with hefty annual fees attached. So they’re best suited to dedicated shoppers, who spend a lot and will get enough value out of the rewards program to justify the high cost of the card.
- Are a points junkie. If you can never get enough rewards points, then you’ll love the increased earning power that comes along with a black rewards card.
- Love extra perks. Above and beyond earning a stack of points, a black rewards card gives you access to a heap of other premium perks, which we’ll cover in this guide. It’ll be much easier to justify shelling out for the annual fee on a black card if you’re the kind of person who will actually use these added extras.
- Always pay your bill in full. Sometimes forget to make a credit card payment, or only pay the minimum? Then a black rewards card is not for you. The hefty interest rate attached means that to avoid paying way too much for this piece of plastic, you should be the kind of person to faithfully pay your entire credit card bill each and every month.
What are the eligibility requirements?
Even if you think you’re the kind of person who should carry a black rewards card in their wallet, there’s another hurdle to jump: some pretty strict eligibility requirements.
Each provider may have slightly different eligibility criteria, but for starters, as with any other credit card, you’ll likely need a driver’s licence or passport as I.D., as well as proof of a regular income.
That’s where it starts to get a bit trickier. You’ll also need an exceptional credit rating and history to score a black rewards card. Plus, most black credit cards come with a minimum income requirement, usually between $50,000 and $120,000 p.a.
Key features of a black rewards card
At least part of the appeal of a black rewards card is a sense of prestige and exclusivity. But that won’t help you spend when and how you want. So what exactly are you getting when you opt for one of these pieces of plastic?
Here are some of the main features you can expect from your black credit card:
- Annual fee. One of the unavoidable costs of carrying a black rewards card is the steep annual fee. All the luxury of a top end credit card is reflected in this fee, which can come in at around $400, although some of the most exclusive black rewards cards are rumoured to have fees as high as $2,500.
- Interest rate. On a black rewards card, it’s not unusual to get nailed with an interest rate of 20% or above. This is a pretty steep price to pay - so if you’re using a black piece of plastic, remember to have a plan in place that will enable you to pay off your balance in full each month and avoid the sting of interest all together.
- Interest free days. Speaking of avoiding interest, the best way to do that is by knowing when your interest free days will run out. Black rewards cards aren’t any different to any other credit card in this area - you’ll still usually get 44 or 55 days interest free each month.
- Rewards program. When you spend big on a black card, you’ll earn big rewards points. Like any other rewards card, you can usually choose between general rewards programs or airline rewards. You’ll be able to cash in your points for things like luxury retail products, free flights, event tickets, gift cards or cash back.
- Rewards cap and expiry. As well as earning you heaps of points, black rewards cards often come with no cap on how many points you can earn or how long you can save them up for.
- Extra perks. One of the main things that sets a black rewards card apart from it’s less luxe cousins, is all the premium perks and extra bonuses on offer. These freebies, along with the extra points power, are where you’ll recoup the cost of the annual fee - so be sure to make the most of them!
What kind of perks come with a black rewards card?
If perks are such an important part of having a black rewards card, then you’ll need to know just what’s on offer, right?
Each rewards program and each card offer is a little bit different, so some might have perks that others don’t. But with that in mind, here are some of the premium freebies you can often expect to bag, compliments of your black credit card:
Complimentary insurance cover is a pretty standard freebie for platinum or black rewards cards. Cover on offer could include:
- Extended warranty (usually up to 24 months) on purchases made on your card.
- Purchase protection, which covers you against loss, theft or accidental damage to things you bought on your card.
- International travel insurance.
If you’re a frequent traveller, a black rewards card could hook you up with a heap of handy free services and perks, including:
- Airport lounge passes in cities around the world.
- Complimentary membership to a Frequent Flyers program.
- Free flights.
Your black credit card usually comes with a 24/7 concierge service, which is set up to help you with things like booking flights, accommodation and restaurants or finding that perfect gift.
Access to exclusive events
Black rewards card programs often come with access to exclusive food, lifestyle or retail events, such as VIP shopping experiences.
What are the disadvantages of a black rewards card?
The main downside to having an exclusive black card tucked in your pocket is that it’s the most expensive credit card option around. From high annual fees to a steep interest rate, these cards don’t come cheap.
That means you have to really make use of the perks and rewards points on offer to justify the higher cost of having the card. But be careful not to overspend on your shopping just to score rewards points - then not only have you shelled out for the annual fee, but you’ve spent more than you bargained for elsewhere too.
Is a black card better for earning rewards points?
|Rewards||Platinum rewards||Black rewards|
|Points earned on AMEX||1||2||3|
|Points earned on Visa/MasterCard||0.75||1||1.25|
*Table is indicative only. Please check each product for information on points scheme.
That means you can rack up points quicker than ever, plus, since black cards often come with no cap on points and no points expiry date, it’s super easy to build up a stack of them to use on rewards you really want.
Find a black credit card
If the luxe and exclusive world of black rewards cards is right for you, head over to our black credit cards comparison table to check out some of the deals on offer.
Need some more information before you committ? Read our general guide on black credit cards.
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