One of the most commonly used financial products is a credit card. But, despite how common this financial tool is, there is a whole world of prestigious, elite credit cards that you probably have never encountered. In order to gain access to or be “in the know” of these credit cards, high net worth is required because of the intended wealth oriented exclusivity and cost. Furthermore, you usually need to receive a special invitation from a special person to obtain one of these prestigious credit cards. It is possible to receive a prestigious credit card without an invitation, but be prepared to pay the steep price. Once access is gained, individuals can relish an array of benefits, such as an immensely high credit limit and elite perks.
If you are like many Canadians who have never heard of these types of credit cards, you’ve come to the right place! In this article, we will explore what prestigious credit cards are, how to obtain one and whether they’re worth it or not.
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What Are Prestigious Credit Cards?
Prestigious credit cards have the same characteristics as a regular credit card product would. You use it to make purchases and pay the balance when it’s due with interest accruing on the unpaid balance. So, what makes prestigious credit cards special? In short, prestigious credit cards have countless benefits that regular credit cards do not. Below are the characteristics of prestigious credit cards that set them apart from regular credit cards.
- Limited Availability. Prestigious credit cards are not available to just anybody. Admission to use a prestigious credit card tends to be invite only. If you’re willing to schmooze, pull some strings or flaunt some money, you might swindle an invite!
- The Card is Rare Itself. Unlike ordinary plastic credit cards, the cards of prestigious nature are made of exclusive and expensive materials. The idea is that the card should feel as elite as it truly is. Prestigious credit cards can be made of gold, titanium or palladium and be encrusted with diamonds or other precious gemstones.
- Comes with a Price. The benefits of a prestigious credit card are not free unless you receive a discount as a result of having a high net worth and being an exclusive member. The annual fees are usually around $1,000 per year plus any applicable initiation fees. Although the fees can be much higher, the most expensive credit card (Sberbank Visa Infinite Gold Card) costs $100,000 per year!
- Crazy High Credit Limits. Prestigious credit cards have extraordinarily high spending limits because their owners can afford it. These credit cards allow individuals to buy virtually anything they want. Of course, credit card providers can cut you off when they see fit, just like any other credit card provider.
- Benefits. One of the most notable differences of prestigious credit cards is the personalized assistance the owner of the card receives. Example of prestigious credit card benefits are having access to a private airport lounge when traveling, personal shoppers and private jet use.
- Hidden Benefits. The general public is typically not made aware of prestigious credit card perks because that’s how owners want it. The less everyone knows about exclusive perks, the more members can reap the benefits and continue to keep control of them. Otherwise, how else would they take advantage of their perks?
The Most Prestigious Credit Cards in the World
Now that we know about all the elusive perks and characteristics of prestigious credit cards, let’s explore the most extravagant credit cards available in the world. You might be blown away by how expensive and luxurious prestigious credit cards really are!
Eurasian Diamond Card Visa Infinite by Eurasian Bank
To be eligible to receive this card, you need to be recommended by two current cardholders or by the managing board of the Eurasian Bank. The annual fees are between $395 and $1,185 depending on the outstanding balance of the card. You will benefit from concierge services worldwide which can help you book hotels, obtain butler services, arrange visas, schedule private plane services, and access translation services.
J.P. Morgan Reserve Card by J.P. Morgan Private Bank
This J.P. Morgan Reserve Card is offered to top clients only, a personalized invite is required. The invitees must have $10 million or more in assets managed by the investment bank. Once an invite is received, cardholders obtain a palladium credit card that is worth $1,295 itself. Annual fees are $595 and card owners can access airport lounges and take advantage of a $300 yearly travel credit.
The Merrill Lynch Octave Black Card by Merrill Lynch
The Octave Card is invitation only and is available to only their highest net worth clientele. To be considered for an invite, $10 million or more in a bank account at Merrill Lynch is required. There is an annual fee of $950 and cardholders reap the benefits of having no credit limit, two and a half times the points on applicable purchases, travel benefits, airport concierges, and special savings on private jet expenses.
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Centurion Card by American Express
Commonly referred to as the “Black Card”, this credit card can only be obtained by invite. Invites are obtained if you have spent a minimum of $250,000, in a year, across all your AMEX account. Once you receive your invite, a one time fee of $7,500 is required along with an annual fee of $2,500. After the fees are paid, the owner had no credit limit and has access to a concierge.
Stratus Rewards Visa by Stratus
In contrast, this card is known as the “White Card” and commonly used by avid flyers. To get a White Card, you need a referral from a cardholder or a Stratus Reward partner company. The card costs $1,500 per year and gives you rewards for travel on private jets or charter flights.
Luxury Gold Card by Mastercard
This is one of the select few prestigious credit cards that you can apply for, an invitation is not required. The cost of the card annually is $995 and the card is made of gold, as the name implies. If you get your hands on this card, you can take advantage of chauffeur transportation, luggage delivery around the world, and special service from airport representatives.
Coutts Silk Credit Card by Royal Bank of Scotland
The Coutts card is an exception to the invitation-only rule. In order to get one, you need to complete a questionnaire. During the questionnaire, the bank asks you if you will be bringing in over a million pounds worth of investable assets among other questions. The card also allows you to access airport lounges, attend exclusive events and use the 24/7 services provided by the bank.
Dubai First Royale Mastercard by Dubai First
This card is offered to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) royalty and other high net worth individuals in the area. The Dubai First Royale card is one of the most elite and exclusive cards out there. A one time fee of 7,000 dirhams (or $1,900 CAD) is required. There is no credit limit and you are matched with a lifestyle manager who has the ability to connect you with anything your heart desires.
Sberbank Visa Infinite Gold Card by Sberbank
The Infinite Gold Card is only issued to the top 100 clients of Sberbank. There’s a reason it’s only introduced to top clientele, it is made of gold, diamonds, and mother of pearl. If a client wants to use this card, the initiation fee is $100,000, $65,000 of which goes toward the card manufacturing alone. In addition, there is an annual $2,000 fee to maintain the card.
Santander Unlimited Black Card by Santander Group
Perhaps one of the lesser-known prestigious credit cards, this black card is offered by the Santander Group in Brazil to elusive private banking customers. The annual fee is $275 and the spending limit is quite flexible. Other benefits include special experiences with restaurants and hotels, 24-hour concierge services, airport concierge with Mastercard, LoungeKey membership and travel insurance.
Obtaining a Prestigious Credit Card
Prestigious credit cards are specifically designed for exclusivity. In fact, they are only marketed to a select few individuals, not the masses. Before you can even consider obtaining a prestigious credit card, you need to be a part of the right group of people. In terms of prestigious credit cards, that means you need to have a high net worth or simply know the right people.
All of that being said, it absolutely is not impossible to gain access to a prestigious credit card. To work towards a high net worth, you need to master personal finance concepts such as saving, budgeting, investing, and optimization of credit. Anyone can master these concepts with education, dedication, patience, and perseverance. You will also need the luck and opportunity for a high paying job to build a high net worth. Once you get a high net worth, its all about schmoozing, mingling and networking to get your prestigious credit card invite.
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Are Prestigious Credit Cards Worth It?
As mentioned, owners of prestigious credit cards have a high net worth meaning that they live a more luxurious lifestyle than ordinary people do. Prestigious credit cards compliment that lifestyle by providing the owners with glamourous perks that aren’t available to the general public. In other words, the perks of prestigious credit cards are more of a want than a need and an extreme one at that!
If glamour and luxury are important to you and you can afford the perks, then a prestigious credit card would be worth it. It all depends on your personal preferences, lifestyle and financial position. Another thing that matters is considering whether the annual fees of a prestigious credit card are worth the benefits you get.
The main attraction of prestigious credit cards is the exclusivity that comes with it. You get access to benefits that the majority of people do not, sounds amazing, doesn’t it? Although, obtaining a prestigious credit card is easier said than done. The majority of people will never receive one in their lifetime and that is perfectly okay! At the end of the day, prestigious credit cards are an elite luxury, by no means are they needed to be successful financially and having one doesn’t mean anything other than having access to exclusive perks.