SBI Elite Credit Card Review

Review Summary

As the name suggests, this card belongs to the elite class of credit cards. The SBI Elite Card is a top class credit card with exceptional benefits and features. Although the annual fee is high (Rs. 4999), it is justified if you look at the features and benefits offered by the card. The card has a reward rate that ranges from 0.5% -2.5%. SBI is one of the most trusted banks in India and it has come up with a gem of a card. Welcome gift, up to 5x rewards, airport lounge access, free movie tickets are some of the benefits related to this card. You should definitely apply for this card if you want to live the high life. 

In this article

Card Rating table
Pros and Cons of the card
Card details: At a glance
SBI Elite Credit Card: Benefits
Where SBI Elite Credit Card falls short
Fees and charges
Reasons to sign up for the card
Similar cards: In case SBI Elite Credit Card doesn’t impress you
Final Word

SBI Elite

Info

Pros
  • Welcome gift
  • Excellent rewards program
  • Airport lounge access
  • Club Vistara and Trident Privilege membership
  • Lowest foreign currency markup
Cons
  • High annual fee
  • Slightly high interest rate
  • No cash back on any category

Additional

  • Welcome e-gift voucher worth Rs. 5000
  • Earn 5x reward points on dining, grocery stores, and departmental stores
  • Earn 2 reward points for every Rs. 100 on all other spends
  • Reward rate of the card varies from 0.5% -2.5%
  • Annual fee reversal if you spend more than 10 lacs
  • You can get 2 free movie tickets per month or Rs. 500 off whichever is less
  • Get 6 complimentary airport lounge visits per year outside India (Maximum: 2 visits per quarter)
  • Get 4 rounds of complimentary green fees access and up to 50% off on golf games
  • Complimentary Trident Privilege Red Tier Membership
  • Complimentary Club Vistara Silver Membership
  • 1% fuel surcharge waiver across all petrol pumps in India up to Rs. 250 per billing cycle
  • Exclusive concierge services to assist you with all your travel bookings, dinner reservations, and much more

Card Rating

MeasureRating (Out of 5)
Annual Fee2
Rewards4
Features 4.5
Interest Rate2
Joining Bonus4.5

Pros and Cons of the card

ProsCons
Welcome giftHigh annual fee
Excellent rewards programSlightly high interest rate
Airport lounge accessNo cash back on any category
Club Vistara and Trident Privilege membership
Lowest foreign currency markup

SBI Elite Credit Card Features & Details

Annual FeeRs. 4999
Welcome giftE-gift voucher worth Rs. 5000
RewardsUp to 5x rewards
Other benefitsFree movie tickets
Airport lounge access
Fuel surcharge waiver
Hotel membership
Club vistara membership
Interest rate Up to 3.35% per month, i.e. 40.20% annually
Late Payment chargesRs. 0-200: Nil
Rs. 201-500: Rs. 100
Rs. 501-1000: Rs. 400
Rs. 1001- 10000: Rs. 500
Rs. 10001 and more: Rs. 750
Cash Advance feesSBI or other ATMs: 2.5% of transaction amount, subject to a minimum of Rs. 300
International ATM: 3% of transaction amount, subject to a minimum of Rs. 300
Foreign currency transaction fee1.99% of the transaction

SBI Elite Credit Card: Benefits

Welcome gift

SBI Elite Card gives you a welcome e-gift voucher worth Rs. 5000. You will receive a text message to choose the e-gift voucher within 5 days of annual fee payment. You can choose the voucher from the following partner brands:

  1. Yatra
  2. Hush Puppies/ Bata
  3. Marks and Spencer
  4. Pantaloons
  5. Shoppers Stop

After you have chosen the which voucher you want, it will be sent to your registered mobile number and email within 10 days of the request.

Redeeming the voucher:

For redeeming the voucher at Marks and Spencer, Shoppers Stop, Hush Puppies/ Bata, and Pantaloons, you just need to show the e-gift voucher code at the respective store.

For redeeming the voucher at Yatra and Shoppers Stop, you can use the code online at the time of purchase.

Rewards Program

The SBI Elite card offers an attractive reward program that lets you earn a lot of reward points that can be redeemed for a variety of gifts and vouchers. You can earn reward points as follows:

  1. Earn 5x reward points on dining, grocery stores, and departmental stores
  2. Earn 2 reward points for every Rs. 100 on all other spends

You can use these points for gifts, vouchers, and for paying your card’s outstanding balance. The redemption rate is 1 reward point = Rs. 0.25.

The reward rate of the card varies from 0.5% -2.5% depending on the category. For dining, grocery stores, and departmental stores the reward rate is 2.50% and for all other spends the reward rate is 0.5%.

Spend more, earn more!

The more you spend, the more points you earn. You can earn as much as 50000 bonus points. You get additional bonus points upon reaching certain milestones:

  1. Earn 10000 bonus points upon achieving annual spends of Rs. 3 lacs and 4 lacs
  2. Earn 15000 bonus points upon achieving annual spends of Rs. 5 lacs and 8 lacs
  3. Annual fee reversal if you spend more than 10 lacs

Movie Bonanza

If you love watching movies, this card can help you save up to Rs. 6000 in a year. You can get 2 free movie tickets per month or Rs. 500 off whichever is less. The offer details are described below:

  1. The offer is valid only on bookings through the bookmyshow website and mobile app.
  2. Offer is valid on purchase of minimum 2 movie tickets
  3. Only primary cardholder can avail the offer
  4. Offer cannot be combined with any other discount/offer/promotions
  5. Tickets once bought cannot be canceled, refunded, or exchanged
  6. The maximum discount per ticket is Rs. 250

Airport lounge access

With the SBI Elite card, you get complimentary Priority Pass Program membership worth $99. You can use this membership to relax and enjoy at airport lounges all over the globe. Details of the offer are described below:

  1. You get 6 complimentary airport lounge visits per year outside India (Maximum: 2 visits per quarter)
  2. You get access to over 1000 airport lounges globally
  3. After the complimentary visits, you are charged a usage of $27 for every visit
  4. Only the primary cardholder is eligible for the program
  5. Complimentary membership is valid only for first two years

Along with this, the SBI Elite Card gives you complimentary access to two domestic airport lounges in each quarter.

Mastercard/Visa Privileges

  1. You get 4 rounds of complimentary green fees access and up to 50% off on golf games.
  2. You get 1 complimentary lesson per month at specific golf courses in India.
  3. Discounts on dining at specific restaurants and cafe
  4. Discounts on select apparel brands
  5. For more details about Mastercard privileges, click here and for Visa privileges, click here

Complimentary Trident Hotel Privilege Membership

With this card, you get complimentary trident privilege red tier membership. Upon registration, you get 1000 welcome points. When you make your first Trident hotel booking using this card, you earn 1500 bonus points and an additional hotel credit of Rs. 1000 on extended night stay. Every time you book a stay using their website you get a 10% discount. Along with this, you earn 10 points for every Rs. 100 spent at participating hotels.

Club Vistara Membership

You get complimentary Club Vistara Silver Membership with this card. You earn 1 complimentary lounge access voucher and 1 upgrade voucher. Whenever you fly Vistara airlines, you earn 9 Club Vistara points for every Rs. 100 spent. You can apply for the Club Vistara Silver Membership here.

Fuel surcharge waiver

The card offers you 1% fuel surcharge waiver across all petrol pumps in India. In order to get this benefit, you need to purchase fuel worth Rs. 500 to Rs. 4000. The maximum surcharge waiver that you can get in one billing cycle is Rs. 250.

Lowest foreign exchange markup

SBI Elite card offers the lowest foreign exchange markup charge out of all the credit cards. The card charges a rate of 1.99% on international usage. The best part is that you earn 2 reward points for every Rs. 100 spent on all international transactions.

Exclusive concierge services

With this card, you get exclusive assistance with customised holiday packages, gift delivery, travel, mobile, and hotel reservations. Along with this, you get exclusive discounts at leading Spas and lifestyle stores. In order to avail the services, you can call 022-42320257 or email at sbicardelite@aspirelifestyles.com.

Additional features of the card

Excellent Balance Transfer Facility

SBI Elite Credit Card gives you the opportunity to transfer the outstanding balance on your other bank’s credit card to the SBI Elite Credit Card. The rate of interest charged on this is very nominal and you can pay back easily through EMIs. You can simply login SBI card online website, SMS BTEMI on 56767,  or call 39020202 / 1800-1801290 to avail the balance transfer on EMI facility.

SBI gives you two options for transferring your outstanding balance to the SBI Card.

Interest Rate ChargedTenure
0.50%3 months
0.75%6 months

If your previous card was a Visa, balance can be transferred within 3 days and if your card is not Visa, then the balance will be transferred within 5 days.

Easy Flexipay Facility

SBI gives you an opportunity to pay back your big purchases in flexible instalments. You can convert your transactions of Rs. 2,500 or more into Flexipay within 30 days of purchase. Following table describes a list of options to pay back big transactions.

TenureMonthly installment(Rs.) * Per Rs. 1000
6 months178.8
12 months95.4
24 Months 53.8

The rate of interest used to calculate the monthly instalments is 14.50% p.a. or as per applicable offer. Foreclosure or cancellation charges are 3.00% on the outstanding principal amount.

Easy Money facility

With easy money, you can get a cheque delivered to your doorstep simply by calling the SBI Card helpline. With this facility, you have the option of availing money against your cash limit. You can avail a cheque for a minimum of Rs. 5000 and a maximum of up to 75% of your available cash limit on your SBI Credit Card. A processing fee will be charged as applicable.

Global Acceptance

The SBI Elite Card is accepted in more than 24 million outlets across of the globe. Within India, it is accepted in over 325,000 outlets.

Contactless Advantage

With increasing technology, it has become even more convenient to use your card. You can simply wave your card at a secure radar and your transaction will be fulfilled. There is no need to hand over your card to the merchant or find cash in your wallet. Just wave your card and you’re done!

Fraud Liability cover

SBI has you covered against fraud. With this card, you get a complimentary credit card fraud liability cover of Rs. 1 lac. The liability cover is liable from the period of 48 hours prior to reporting of loss till 7 days post reporting of loss. Credit card fraud is a serious issue and you should report any such case immediately. You should contact the SBI Card helpline to report card loss at 39020202 (prefix local STD code) or 1860-180-1290.

Emergency Card Replacement

SBI has you covered if you need to replace your card in an emergency. The best part is you can get your SBI Elite Card replaced anywhere in the world. When traveling abroad, you can call the SBI helpline 24×7 for emergency card replacement. If you need to replace your card in India, you can call 39020202 (prefix local STD code) or 1860-180-1290.

Add-on card

SBI Card Elite gives you the opportunity to empower your family with add-on cards for your parents, children, spouse, or siblings above the age of 18 years.

Where SBI Elite Credit Card falls short

High annual fee

Since the SBI Elite Card is a super-premium credit card, its annual fee is bound to be high. If you’re looking for a super-premium card, you won’t mind paying such a high annual fee. In order to avail the benefits of this card, you need to pay an annual fee of Rs. 4999. For add-on cards, the annual fee is nil.

Reward redemption rate is not that impressive

Although the benefits outweigh the flaws of this card, there is one thing that the card lacks. It is the reward redemption rate. SBI Elite card has a standard SBI reward redemption rate of 1 reward point = Rs. 0.25. This is very low if you compare it other super-premium credit cards in the market.

There is no cash back program

Although the rewards programs offered by the card is one of the best in class, there is no cash back offered by the card. If you are someone who is interested in cash back cards you can consider Citi Cash Back Card, Standard Chartered Manhattan Platinum Card.

Fees and charges

Annual Fee

The annual fee for the card is Rs. 4999.

Default payment charges

You get an interest free credit period of about 20-50 days, applicable only on retail spends, and only if the last month’s outstanding balance is paid in full.

If you default on your payments, i.e., if you don’t pay the minimum amount due as per the last credit card statement by the payment due date, the interest charged is up to 3.35% per month, i.e. (40.20% annually). This will be very costly for you if you are someone who defaults on payments regularly. It is a good habit to pay your bills before the due date. This will help in maintaining a good credit score which will, in turn, help you in getting better credit card deals and loans in the future.

Late payment charges

If you are not able to pay the minimum amount due by the payment due date, you will incur late payment charges. These charges depend on your balance statement and are described in the table below.

Outstanding statement balance (in Rs.)Late fee (in Rs.)
0 -200Nil
201-500100
501-1000400
1001-10000500
10001 and more 750

Cash Advance limit and charges

The card gives you the opportunity to withdraw cash up to 80% of the credit limit, subject to a maximum of Rs. 15000 per day. The cash advance fee charged is 2.50% of the transaction amount, subject to a minimum of Rs. 300 when you use SBI or other ATMs. The cash advance fee is 3% when you withdraw from an international ATM.

Foreign Currency Transactions

You have the option of using your SBI Elite card for foreign transactions. However, you will be charged a foreign transaction fee for the same. For international transactions in US Dollars, you will be charged 1.99% of the INR equivalent of the US Dollar amount. If the transaction takes place in some other currency than US Dollars, then the transaction would be converted to US Dollars first, and then 1.99% charge would be levied on the INR equivalent of the US Dollars.

One major problem with this is that the transaction fee is billed in Indian Rupees using exchange rates on the date of settlement of transaction and not on the date of the transaction. This means that you may end paying more if the US Dollar appreciates against the Indian Rupee on the date of settlement. Exchange rates keep changing every day so you should think twice before using your card for foreign currency transaction. You should use it only if you have no other option left.

Other charges

Statement charge: Rs. 100 per statement that is more than 2 months old

Payment dishonour fee: 2% of the payment amount, subject to a minimum of Rs. 300

Charge slip retrieval: Rs. 225 per charge slip

Overlimit: 2.5% of over-limit amount subject to a minimum of Rs. 500

Card Replacement: Rs. 100

Emergency card replacement, when abroad: Nil

Rewards redemption fee: Rs. 99

Cash Payment Fee: Rs. 100

Reasons to sign up for the card

  1. Excellent rewards program that lets you earn points for all purchases
  2. Additional benefits such as free movie tickets, complimentary lounge access, fuel surcharge waiver
  3. Exclusive benefits such as Club Vistara and Trident Hotel membership
  4. Global acceptance and lowest foreign currency mark-up
  5. SBI is one of the most trusted banks in India

Similar cards: In case SBI Elite Credit Card doesn’t impress you

There are not many super-premium credit cards out there. The reason being they charge a high annual fee and their eligibility criteria is extremely tight. SBI Elite Card is one such super-premium card that offers exclusive benefits and privileges to the card holder. The SBI Elite card should impress you and it should be a top contender if you’re looking for a super-premium credit card. However, if for some reason you are not impressed by it, I can think of two more super-premium credit cards that you can consider.

HDFC Bank Diners Club Black Credit Card

The Diners Club Black Card from HDFC Bank is a super-premium credit gives tough competition to the SBI Elite Card. The Diners Black Card offers exclusive lifestyle, travelling benefits along with a spectacular rewards program that lets you save up to 33%. In order to avail these benefits, you need to pay a joining fee of Rs. 10000, and from second year onwards you need to pay an annual fee of Rs. 5000.

The Diners Black card offers a 10x accelerated rewards program that lets you earn 50 reward points for every Rs. 150 spent on partner brands viz., Smartbuy, Amazon.in, Lifestyle, Big Basket, Uber, BookMyShow, Swiggy, Redbus, Luxehues. The best part is that the reward redemption rate is 1 reward point = Rs. 1. Thus, for every Rs. 150 spent on these partner brands you earn Rs. 50 back. On other regular purchases, you earn 5 reward points for every Rs. 150 spent.

With this card, you get access to Diners Club Exclusive Lounge Program which gives you unlimited complimentary access to more than 700 international airport lounges and 35 domestic airport lounges within India. Along with this, you get air accident cover of Rs. 2 crores, travel insurance of baggage delay/loss of Rs. 55000.

The card is your best friend when it comes to movies, golf, and dining out. You earn 10x reward points when you book movies through BookMyShow. However, if you book through HDFC Diner Club website, you get 1 free ticket with 1 paid ticket. You also get complimentary golf games (Green Fee Waiver) at almost 20 golf courses in India and over 40 golf courses world over and complimentary golf lessons at select Driving ranges in India.

Yes First Exclusive Credit Card

Another super-premium credit card is the Yes Bank Exclusive Card which offers super-premium rewards and benefits. However, only a select few can afford this card as you need to have a minimum salary of Rs. 50 lacs per annum to be eligible for this card. Or, if you already have a credit card, the credit limit should be at least Rs. 8 lacs and you should have owned it for the past 12 months and more.

With the Yes First Exclusive card you get 10 reward points for every Rs. 100 spent on retail transactions. Along with this, you get 25000 bonus reward points upon reaching a milestone of Rs. 20 lacs in one year. You can redeem these points at the rate of 1 reward point = Rs. 0.25. When you sign up, you get a welcome gift of 50000 bonus points and upon paying the annual fee (Rs. 10000), you get a renewal bonus of 40000 bonus points every year.

This card charges the lowest interest rate of 1.20% per month (14.40% per annum) for Yes Bank Savings and Salary account holders. For others, the card charges a rate of 1.99% per month (23.88% per annum). Even if you miss payment deadlines, the interest won’t be as high as other cards. Also, if you travel internationally and shop using this card, you pay a foreign currency markup of just 1.75%, which is the lowest amongst all other cards.

With your Yes Bank Exclusive Credit card you not only get complimentary membership to Priority Pass program but also unlimited complimentary access to lounges on Priority Pass membership for the primary Card member as well as the add-0n card member in a calendar year. For all your domestic travel, MasterCard lounge access program gives you unlimited complimentary access to select airport lounges across Indian Airports but for only primary cardmember.

You also get 25% discount on movie tickets when booked on www.bookmyshow.com or BookMyShow App (total discount is capped at Rs.250 per calendar month),  an entry into MasterCard World Golf program (complete waiver of Green fee at select golf courses in India), fuel surcharge waiver at all fuel stations across India for transactions between Rs.400 to Rs.5,000.

Final Word

This review must have helped you in evaluating the SBI Elite Credit Card. You must have made a decision by now, on whether you’ll apply for the card or not. The comparison with HDFC Bank Diners Club Black Credit Card and Yes Bank Exclusive Credit Card must have given you an idea as to where the SBI Elite Card stands amongst its peers. I would strongly recommend you to apply for this card if you want to live a luxurious lifestyle. Exclusive deals and offers help you earn a lot of rewards points which can be redeemed for numerous gift vouchers, services, etc. Sign up for the SBI Elite Credit Card and see for yourself.

Author: Himank Mishra

Himank is a highly motivated and dedicated person. He graduated from Ball State University, United States with an MBA in Finance. Himank has a passion for Financial Markets. He wants to help everyone achieve Financial Freedom!

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  • Jalem Raj Rohit

    Hi. Any idea about the airline partners for this card? For example, I can redeem my HDFC Regalia-First’s points with Jet and S’pore airlines.

    • Hi Jalem,

      You can convert your reward points on the SBI Elite card into JP Miles at the following conversion rate:
      4 reward points = 1 JP Miles
      Important points to note:
      1. Minimum 8,000 Reward Points are required for redemption against JPMiles.
      2. Redemption can be done in multiples of 8,000 Reward Points only.
      3. Simply call the SBI service center to place your redemption request.

      I hope this helps. Please let us know if you have any further questions.

    • Himank Mishra

      Hi Jalem,

      You can convert your reward points on the SBI Elite card into JP Miles at the following conversion rate:
      4 reward points = 1 JP Miles

      Important points to note:
      1. Minimum 8,000 Reward Points are required for redemption against JPMiles.
      2. Redemption can be done in multiples of 8,000 Reward Points only.
      3. Simply call the SBI service center to place your redemption request.

      I hope this helps. Please let us know if you have any further questions.

  • Felix Raj

    Hi Himank,

    I strongly recommend your post, But i would like to one thing, do we get any get vouchers upon paying renewal amount ? Just in case 🙂

    Thanks,
    Felix.

  • Yogesh Gandhi

    HI,

    What is the validity of 5K vouches?

    • Himank Mishra

      Hi Yogesh,

      The e-gift vouchers are valid for 6 months from the date of issue. The validity will be mentioned on the voucher when you receive it.

      Hope this helps!

      Thanks!