Credit Cards in India come with a variety of annual fees. You need to pay the annual fee in certain cases.
But you can find the best free credit card in India in 3 cases.
- A few credit cards offer welcome gifts equal to or more than the sign-in charges. So the net cost will be zero.
- You can get a credit card annual fee waiver on spending a certain amount in the year. The card will become free for that year.
- There are only a few lifetime free credit cards in India.
The annual fee for Credit Card is not a huge concern for spendthrifts. But for people like you and me saving every penny which can be saved with a little effort, counts.
We have researched for the best Credit Cards in India with no annual fee. In this article, I have added all the 3 types of free credit cards in India.
Here is the list of 11 best free credit card in India 2021
Best Lifetime Free Credit Card in India 2021
#1. ICICI Instant Platinum Card Review
Platinum credit card is beginner level credit card offered by ICICI bank. You can get ICICI instant platinum credit card lifetime free (limited time offer) otherwise bank charge annual fee of Rs 199.
You will get basic benefits like 3 payback points per Rs 100 on the platinum credit card.
ICICI Bank also offers you instant credit card against the fixed deposit if you have a saving account with ICICI bank. You can simply log on to ICICI online banking and apply for the card.
Annual Fee: Lifetime Free
Best Used for: First Time Credit Card applicants.
- 3 payback points for every Rs.100 spent.
- Get ₹ 100 off on movie tickets twice a month.
- Enjoy delicious treats at minimum 15% savings at over 800 leading restaurants across 10 cities in India.
- 1% fuel surcharge waiver can be availed on fuel transaction of maximum ₹ 4,000 at HPCL pumps
You would to read – Best credit card in India 2021
#2. ICICI Amazon Pay Credit Card Review
ICICI Amazon Pay credit card is one of the best zero annual fee credit cards in India for Amazon shoppers. You can save up to 5% on every shopping on Amazon if you are a prime member.
You will get 3% cashback as Amazon pay balance for non-prime members.
Application Process – One drawback is that you cannot apply directly for the credit card. You would see an invite inside your Amazon Mobile App and receive an email from Amazon. Only then you can get this amazon pay credit card.
You will invite-only if you already have an ICICI credit card.
Make sure you add your existing ICICI credit card into Amazon account to get the invite. If you don’t have ICICI credit card then apply for a lifetime free ICICI Platinum Credit Card.
Annual Fees – NIL (Lifetime free)
Benefits of Amazon Pay Credit Card
- 5% cashback for Amazon Prime customers
- 3% cashback for non-prime customers
- No cap on cashback, minimum transaction- Rs. 3000
- 2% cashback when using as a preferred payment method
- 1% cashback on all other payments
- 1% fuel surcharge waiver
#3. Standard Chartered Platinum Rewards Card Review
Standard chartered platinum rewards credit card is the best option if you are applying credit card for the first time and looking for a No Annual Fees credit card for life.
You have a high chance of approval of the Platinum card if you are a salaried employee.
(Approval rate is good in case you have a minimum salary of Rs. 25,000 per month from Private or Government job)
Annual Fee: Rs 250 (you will get 100% cashback up to Rs 500 on your first restaurant spend)
You will get annual fee waiver on spending Rs 60,000 in a year.
Standard Chartered Credit Card Benefits
- Easy approval
- Additional 1000 rewards points if you transact within 60 days
- Bonus 500 points for registering for online banking
- 5 points on spending 150 rupees on dining
- 5 points on spending 150 on fuel
- 1 reward points on spending 150 on any other category
- Additional discounts & offers from Ola, Uber, Grofers, Yatra, that keep on changing with time
Best for – Salaried people who want to own all-rounder credit card
#4. HSBC Visa Platinum Card Review
HSBC Platinum credit card is a lifetime free credit card best for basic usage like regular spend, free movies tickets, dining out.
On papers, the card seems very attractive but due to weak reward redemption, the HSBC platinum card is not as good as compared to other cards.
Annual Fee: Nil.
HSBC Platinum credit card benefits
- 3X rewards on dining, hotels and telecom categories for the first year
- 2 reward points for every ₹150 spent
- 5X rewards after crossing the milestone of ₹ 4 lakh in a year.
- 1% fuel surcharge waiver
- Get ₹2000 Cleartrip voucher on the first transaction
- Get 10% cashback (up to ₹2500) for making 9 transactions totaling to ₹10,000 in the first 90 days
- Entertainment ticket voucher worth ₹500 on spending over ₹50,000 in a calendar month
The benefits are not as great as seem. Either the benefits are one time or you have to spend a lot to get better rewards.
Best Credit Card in India with No Annual Fee 2021 (Annual Fee waiver Credit Cards)
#5. Standard Chartered Manhattan Credit Card Review
SC Manhattan is the only card that offers a direct 5% cashback on your grocery shopping in the supermarkets. You only need to make a minimum transaction of Rs. 1000 to get a 5% cashback. The maximum cashback is capped at Rs. 500 per month (Rs. 150 per transaction).
SC Manhattan credit card comes with an annual fee but if you have credit card annual spending of more than 1.2 lakh then you will enjoy the benefits free of cost.
Annual fee: Rs. 999 (waived off with 1.2 Lakhs annual spending)
Welcome, Gift – BookMyShow gift vouchers worth Rs 2000 on making the first transaction within the first 90 days.
Watch Manhattan credit card review
- 5% cashback on credit card expenditure at supermarkets & department stores
- 3 rewards points per Rs. 150 spent on all other spends
- Rs. 2000 BookMyShow voucher on the first transaction done within 90 days of card setup
#6. Amex Membership Rewards Credit Card Review
Amex Membership Rewards is the only card that gives bonus rewards points on adding money to wallets like Paytm, Amazon Pay and Freecharge.
You can earn 1,000 bonus membership rewards points worth Rs. 400 every month by simply doing 4 transactions of Rs. 1000 each.
First Year Annual Fee – Rs. 1000
Second Year onwards – Rs. 4500 (+earn 5000 reward points upon renewal)
Note: The annual fee will be waived off when you apply using the below link, also earn 2000 bonus points.
Membership Rewards Card Benefits:
- 2000 referral bonus points when you apply using the above link.
- 1000 Bonus points for using your Card 4 times every month.
- Earn 1 MR point on Rs.50 spent on all spends except for spending
#7. SBI Simply Click Credit Card Review
SBI Simply Click credit card is best for all your online shopping needs. The card gives you 10X rewards on Amazon, BookMyShow, Cleartrip, Foodpanda, Lenskart, and UrbanClap.
The card comes with an annual fee of Rs 499 but you will get the annual fee waiver and enjoy the free credit card.
Annual Fee: 499 ( get a waiver on spending 1 Lakh )
Best For : online shopping
Welcome & Milestone Benefits
- Get Amazon.in gift card worth Rs. 500 on joining
- Cleartrip e-voucher worth Rs. 2,000 when you cross annual online spends of Rs. 1 Lakh
- Another Cleartrip e-voucher worth Rs. 2,000, if you spend an additional Rs. 1 Lakh
SBI Simply Click credit card benefits
- 10 reward point on Rs. 100 spend at the partnered brand
- 5 reward point on Rs. 100 spend on other online spends
- Each reward point is worth Re. 0.20
- Earn 1 reward point per Rs. 100 on all other spends
- 1% fuel surcharge waiver
#8. Kotak Royale Signature Credit Card Review
Kotak Royale Signature credit card is a lifestyle credit card that offers 4X reward points on hotels, restaurants, travel, and airlines.
You will get 2 complimentary domestic airport lounge access per quarter as well.
Annual Fee: 999 (spend 1 lac and get annual fee waiver)
Best Used for: Lifestyle expenses.
- 4X reward points on every Rs. 150 spent on Hotels | Restaurants | Travel Agencies & Tour Operators | Package Tour Operators | Airlines and Air Carriers | International
- 2X rewards elsewhere
- 2 Complimentary access to Airport Lounges every quarter in India
- Fuel surcharge waiver on transactions above Rs. 500
- Railway surcharge waiver for transactions on www.irctc.co.in
#9. Citibank Rewards Domestic Credit Card Review
Citibank rewards credit card is a shopping credit card that offers 10 rewards points on Rs 125 spend on apparel and department stores.
You can redeem the rewards points at departmental stores, travel sites and other gift vouchers.
Annual Fee: Rs. 1000.
Fee Waiver: Annual fee is waived off after purchase of Rs. 30,000.
Best Used for: Shopping.
- Earn 10 Reward Points on Rs. 125 expense made at Apparel and Department stores.
- Earn 1 reward point for spending Rs. 125 anywhere else.
- Redeem at departmental stores, retail shopping sites, travel sites or frequent flyers.
- No expiration for RP.
Best Zero Annual Fee Credit Card in India 2021
#10. HDFC Moneyback Card
HDFC moneyback credit card is a basic credit card offered by the bank to their customers. The MoneyBack credit card comes with an annual fee of Rs 500 but the bank offers lifetime free credit card to their bank account holders.
Annual Fee: Lifetime free for HDFC customers
- You earn 2 reward points per Rs. 150 spent
- Get 4 reward points per Rs. 150 on online spends
- 1% fuel surcharge waiver (min transaction Rs. 400)
- You can redeem reward points for the statement credit
#11. Axis Insta Easy Credit Card
Axis Insta Easy is a lifetime free credit card offered by the Axis bank. If you are first-time applicant and already have an axis bank account, then you can open the Axis Insta easy credit card.
You can apply the credit card against the fixed deposit as well. You would get upto 80% limit on your credit card as the value of fixed deposit.
Annual Fee: Lifetime Free
Best Used for: Basic
- Cash withdrawal upto 100% credit limit
- 1% fuel surcharge waiver on the fuel transactions amount between Rs 400 to 4000.
Which Card Should You Apply?
If you are a first-time credit card user, then apply for reward paying credit card without any annual fees – Standard Chartered Platinum Credit Card.
If you want to apply for a credit card that gives better benefits then apply for Amex membership rewards credit card.
You should calculate the benefits return with the credit card annual fee. If you are not using credit cards then you go for a free or minimum fee credit card.