American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card and Citibank PremierMiles Credit Card are two of the best travel credit cards in the mid-range segment. Both the cards are Reward Points based credit cards. While American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card comes with a membership fee of Rs. 5,000 per annum, you need to shell out Rs. 3,000 every year for the Citibank PremierMiles Credit Card.

American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card vs Citibank PremierMiles Credit Card

In this article, we will analyze the reward structure and other benefits and privileges that both these travel credit cards offer, one by one, and then give you a quick comparison between the two cards so that it becomes easier for you to pick one for yourself based on your needs.

American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card

American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card is a mid-range travel credit card by the card issuer. The card offers a decent reward rate (2 Membership Rewards Points per Rs. 100) and comes loaded with a plethora of travel benefits including complimentary domestic airport lounge access every year, Priority Pass membership and complimentary Taj Stay Vouchers on achieving the stipulated spend milestones. Some of the key features of the card are as under-

  • 10,000 Membership Rewards Points as a welcome benefit, subject to expenditure of a minimum of Rs. 5,000 within 60 days of card issuance.
  • Bonus 15,000 Membership Rewards Points worth redemption value of up to Rs. 7,500 (against Taj Stay Vouchers) on spending Rs. 1.9 lakh in a year.
  • Taj Stay Voucher worth Rs, 10,000 and additional 25,000 Membership Rewards Points worth redemption value of up to Rs. 12,500 (against Taj Stay Vouchers) on the expenditure of Rs. 4 lakhs in a membership year.
  • 8 complimentary domestic airport lounge access every year (max 2 per quarter) and complimentary membership of the Priority Pass lounge access program.
  • Up to 20% discount on dining bills at partner restaurants.

The card comes with a joining fee of Rs. 3,500 and an annual renewal fee of Rs. 5,000 second year onwards. To be eligible for AmEx Platinum Travel Credit Card, you must have a minimum income of Rs. 6 lakh per annum.

Citibank PremierMiles Credit Card

Just like American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card, Citibank PemierMiles Credit Card is also a mid-range offering in the travel category. Citibank PremierMiles Credit Card has an AirMiles based reward structure. The card comes with a membership fee of Rs. 3,000 per annum and offers plenty of travel benefits like an accelerated reward rate on travel spends on the bank’s Premier Miles redemption portal, complimentary domestic lounge access and air accident insurance. Citibank PremierMiles Credit Card is offered in two variants- the Visa Signature variant and the MasterCard variant. Some of the key features of the card are as under-

  • 10,000 Miles as a welcome gift on the expenditure of a minimum of Rs. 1,000 within 60 days of card issuance.
  • 3,000 Miles as an annual benefit every year the card membership is renewed.
  • 4 Miles per Rs. 100 spent with the card.
  • Accelerated 10 Miles per Rs. 100 spent with the card on airline transactions on the bank’s Premier Miles redemption portal
  • The Miles earned are redeemable on various spends categories including AirMiles of partner airlines and Intermiles (1 Mile = 0.5 partner airline’s AirMile/InterMile), travel portals like Yatra, MakeMyTrip, Goibibo, PremierMiles and Indigo (1 Mile = Rs. 0.45), utility- Vodafone, BookMyShow and retail spends- ShoppersStop, Westside and Dining, fuel spends at Indian Oil outlets (1 Mile = Rs. 0.30) and other categories of spends (1 Mile = Rs. 0.20).
  • 8 complimentary domestic lounge visits per quarter with the Visa Signature variant and 6 complimentary domestic lounge visits per quarter with the MasterCard variant.
  • Up to 20% discount on dining bills at select Citibank partner restaurants.
  • Personal air accident cover worth Rs. 1 crore and lost card liability cover worth Rs. 10 lakh.

Quick Comparision

For a quick comparison between American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card and Citibank PremierMiles Credit Card, we have summarised the reward rate, fee, eligibility criteria and other benefits of the two cards in a tabular form as under-

American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card Citibank PremierMiles Credit Card
Reward Rate
  • 2 Membership Rewards Point per Rs. 100.
  • 4 Miles per Rs. 100 on regular spends.
  • 10 Miles per Rs. 100 on airline transactions.
Reward Redemption
  • Membership Rewards Points are redeemable for shopping vouchers, credit card bill payment (under Cash + Point scheme), or can be transferred to partner flight/hotel loyalty programs.
  • Miles are redeemable for partner airline’s AirMiles, on travel portals, for utility, fuel and retail purchases, and other spends categories with varying redemption rates.
  • 1 Mile = 0.5 AirMile of partner airlines, 1 Mile = Rs. 0.45 for travel-related categories (on travel portals), 1 Mile = Rs. 0.30 for utility and fuel and retail categories and 1 Mile = Rs. 0.20 for other categories.
Welcome/Renewal Benefits
  • 10,000 Membership Rewards Points as a welcome gift subject to a minimum expenditure of Rs. 5,000 in the first 2 months of card issuance.
  • 10,000 Miles as a welcome gift on the expenditure of a minimum of Rs. 1,000 within 60 days of card issuance.
  • 3,000 Miles every year the card membership is renewed.
Milestone Benefits
  • 15,000 Bonus Membership Rewards Points on spending Rs. 1.9 lakh in a year.
  • Taj Stay Vouchers worth Rs. 10,000 and additional 25,000 Membership Rewards Points on expenditure of Rs. 4 lakh in a year.
N/A
Additional Benefits
  • 8 complimentary domestic lounge access every year (max 2 per quarter) and complimentary Priority Pass Membership.
  • Up to 20% discount on dining bills at partner restaurants.
  • 8 complimentary domestic lounge access per quarter with the Visa variant and 6 complimentary domestic lounge access per quarter with the MasterCard variant.
  • Up to 20% discount at partner restaurants.
  • Personal air accident cover worth Rs 1 crore and lost card liability cover worth Rs. 10 lakh.
Membership Fee
  • Rs. 5,000 per annum second year onwards (joining fee of Rs. 3,500 for the first year)
  • Rs. 3,000 per annum
Eligibility
  • Income of more than 6 lakh per annum for both salaried and self-employed applicants.
  • No income criteria are explicitly specified by the bank.

 

The Verdict

While Citibank PremierMiles credit card offers a higher reward rate than American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card and also comes with a lower annual fee of Rs. 3,000 (compared with Rs. 5,000 for the American Express Platinum Travel Card), you do get better premium add-on benefits with the American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card like complimentary Taj Stay Vouchers and bonus Membership Rewards Points on achieving the stipulated spend milestones. Moreover, American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card also offers a complimentary membership of the Priority Pass airport lounge access program.

So, if you are to make a decision on purely financial grounds (based on which credit card is more economical), then Citibank PremierMiles Credit Card is the obvious choice. However, if you’re someone who wants to enjoy a premium travel experience, then you should consider American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card as you can get Taj Stay Vouchers worth up to Rs. 34,000 on the expenditure of Rs. 4 lakhs in a membership year (considering the milestone vouchers and redemption of regular as well as milestone Membership Rewards Points against Taj Stay Vouchers)- reward rate of 8.5%, which makes it a very attractive premium benefit.

Another point worth considering is that Citibank PremierMiles Credit Card offers 8 complimentary domestic lounge access per quarter with the Visa variant (total 32 per annum) and 6 complimentary domestic lounge access per quarter with the MasterCard variant (total 24 per annum), compared with just 8 domestic lounge access per annum (max 2 per quarter) with American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card. On the other hand, AmEx Platinum Travel Credit Card offers you a complimentary membership of the Priority Pass lounge access program, which Citibank PremierMiles Credit Card does not. So, if you are a frequent domestic flyer, Citibank PremierMiles Credit Card makes more sense, and if you frequently fly to international destinations, American Express Platinum Travel Credit Card should be the card of choice for you.

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