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Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™: 2019 review

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Other premium travel products offer better deals.

  • Get this card if you want savings with luxury providers or wish to bring unlimited guests into Priority Pass lounges.
  • Pick something else if you want a signup bonus, strong rewards or valuable travel credits.
  • Apply with a good to excellent credit score of 670 or higher.

Up to 2x

Points

$495

Annual fee

16.49%

Purchase APR (variable)

0%

Intro Balance Transfer

for the first 15 billing cycles (then 16.49% variable)

Details

Product NameLuxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™
Card typeMastercard
Annual fee$495
Purchase APR16.49% variable
Balance transfer APR0% intro for the first 15 billing cycles (then 16.49% variable)
Balance transfer fee$5 or 3% of the transaction, whichever is greater
Cash advance rate26.74% variable
Cash advance fee$10 or 5% of the cash advance amount, whichever is greater
Foreign transaction feeNone
Interest free periodUp to 23 days
Late payment feeUp to $37
Returned payment feeUp to $37
Additional cardholder fee$195

Pros and cons

Pros
  • Solid redemption rate for cash back and airfare
  • Good balance transfer intro APR
  • Bring unlimited guests into Priority Pass lounges
  • Excellent savings with select luxury providers
  • Contact concierge via live chat in the mobile app
Cons
  • Weak travel credits
  • Other premium cards offer superior rewards
  • No signup bonus
  • High cost for authorized users
  • Global Entry/TSA PreCheck credit renews less frequently than with other cards

How to apply for the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™

  1. Visit the Luxury Card website.
  2. Click Apply now.
  3. Complete the application with information such as your full name, address, annual gross income, date of birth, Social Security number and mother’s maiden name.
  4. Review your information and submit your application.

What credit score do I need?

Barclays, the card issuer, tends to require higher credit scores than other providers. We recommend applying for this card only if you have a credit score of 670 or higher.

Card benefits

The Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™‘s benefits aren’t terrible on their own — they just shrink when compared to other premium cards. Still, you may find value for narrow-use cases.

  • 1.5x points on all purchases. This unimpressive rewards rate improves slightly when you consider the redemption rates.
  • Travel credits. Save on travel with up to $100 in annual airline credits and a credit for your Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application every five years.
  • Airport lounge access. With Priority Pass Select, you can access more than 1,200 airport lounges globally.
  • 24/7 concierge. Call the Luxury Card Concierge any time for dinner reservations, help procuring hard-to-find gifts, making travel plans and other personal requests.
  • Luxury Card benefits. Enjoy special amenities at select hotels, privileges with partner brands, premium travel benefits, access to world-class experiences and more.
  • No foreign transaction fees. Use your card for international purchases without incurring a fee.

Deeper dive: Rewards are solid on their own but unimpressive compared to the competition

The Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ takes a different tack with rewards. Whereas most premium credit cards offer tiered rewards, the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ offers flat-rate rewards: 1.5x points on all purchases. While this sounds terrible, it gets better when you consider redemption rates.

You can get a 1%, 1.5% or 2% redemption rate depending on what you use your points for:

Redemption Starts at Redemption rate
Airfare 50 points for $1 in airfare 2%
Cash back 67 points for $1 in cash back 1.5%
Hotel stays and car rentals 100 points for $1 in hotels or car rentals 1%

The rate for hotel stays and car rentals is disappointingly low. The cashback redemption rate is solid, but it’s not very impressive considering you’ll find no-annual-fee cashback cards with the same — or better — rates. Plenty of cards offer 1.5% cash back on every purchase, for example. And cards like the PayPal Cashback Mastercard® offer 2% cash back on all spending.

The 2% redemption rate on airfare is solid as well, but it doesn’t offer an advantage over simply getting a no-annual-fee card with 2% cash back. You’ll also find cards like the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card that offer 2x miles on every purchase.

The card’s website displays this chart comparing redemption rates among premium travel cards:

Luxury Black Card Mastercard Screenshot 2

It’s technically accurate, but it leaves out an important detail: Considering earn rates and the fact that you can get higher redemption rates via reward transfers, the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™‘s competitors offer superior reward rates.

Overall, the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™‘s airfare and cashback redemption rates are decent on their own. But they offer no real advantage when compared with other great cards.

Deeper dive: Airline and Global Entry/TSA PreCheck credits are underwhelming

Every calendar year, you’ll receive a statement credit up to $100 for airline purchases. Qualifying purchases include:

  • Airfare.
  • Baggage fees.
  • Lounge access.
  • Eligible inflight purchases depending on the merchant category code (MCC).

A travel credit is always welcome. For the price of the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™, however, the airline credit isn’t particularly valuable. Consider the credits you’ll receive with similarly priced cards:

  • The Chase Sapphire Reserve® ($450 annual fee) offers a $300 credit each account anniversary year that applies to many different travel purchases — not just airline spending.
  • The Citi Prestige® Credit Card ($495 annual fee) offers a $250 travel credit every calendar year. This applies to general travel purchases.

The Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ also offers a credit for your Global Entry/TSA PreCheck application fee, which the above-mentioned cards include as well. You’ll receive this credit every five years, while the Chase Sapphire Reserve® offers the credit every four years.

Deeper dive: The Priority Pass Select benefit isn’t unique, but you’ll find one intriguing advantage

You’ll receive Priority Pass Select membership with your card, which gives you unlimited access to more than 1,200 lounges in 600-plus airports around the world.

It’s good for lounge access at around 40 US airports, including Atlanta (ATL), Dallas-Ft. Worth (DFW) and New York-JFK (JFK). On the downside, it won’t get you lounge access at such airports as Salt Lake City (SLC), which is a hub for Delta, and Fort Lauderdale (FLL), a JetBlue hub.

Priority Pass Select isn’t unique to the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™. You’ll find the benefit with premium travel cards like the Chase Sapphire Reserve® and Citi Prestige® Credit Card. However, with Priority Pass Select through the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™, you can bring unlimited guests.

Compare that benefit with the competition:

  • Membership through Chase’s card lets you bring guests at $27 a head.
  • Membership through Citi’s card lets you bring up to two guests at no charge.

Worth mentioning: The big winner in complimentary airport lounge privileges is still The Platinum Card® from American Express, which offers Priority Pass Select membership as well as Delta Sky Club entry. Additionally, it offers access to the Centurion Lounges — an Amex ace in the hole.

Deeper dive: Use concierge to fulfill a variety of requests

You can contact Luxury Card Concierge 24/7 with personal requests big and small. Here are a few tasks Luxury Card says its reps have helped with:

  • Researching school districts to help a cardholder narrow areas to move to in Denver.
  • Setting up a proposal on the JumboTron in New York City’s Times Square.
  • Skipping the ticket purchase line at a theme park.

Concierge can be well worth the cost of entry depending on how often you use it. Beyond unusual requests, you can make traditional requests like dinner reservations, booking travel and finding tickets to in-demand shows. Note, however, that concierge benefits are available widely, especially with premium cards.

Contact Luxury Card Concierge by phone or email, or through the Luxury Card app.

Deeper dive: Luxury Card Travel perks can offer extraordinary value

One major appeal of being a cardmember is having access to Luxury Card Travel perks. These include:

  • Airport Meet & Assist. Dedicated representatives can fast-track you through queues and processing at over 500 airports around the globe. You’ll receive a 20% discount for this service.
  • Global Luggage Delivery. Have your luggage sent ahead of time to your destination, which can save you some hassle — not to mention the money you’d otherwise spend checking baggage. Through Luxury Card, you’ll get a complimentary second bag on your first shipment, a 20% ongoing discount and complimentary luggage insurance.

At more than 3,000 luxury hotels around the world, you’ll receive special amenities such as:

  • Complimentary room upgrades.
  • Complimentary in-room Wi-Fi.
  • Spa credits.
  • Food and beverage packages.
  • Early check-in and late checkout.
  • Hotel credits and credits for suite bookings.
  • Accelerated points.
  • Welcome amenities.
  • Complimentary breakfast for two.
  • Priority restaurant reservations.

Luxury Card also maintains partnerships with providers of luxury services, and here’s where the card shines. These are examples of benefits you’ll find:

  • Villas of Distinction. Book luxury villas and enjoy benefits like $700 in service credits, in-home massages, rental cars and private drivers.
  • Willing Foot by Lisa Lindblad Travel Design. Enjoy 5% discounts on custom travel packages and 10% discounts on pre-crafted packages with this bespoke travel company.
  • Cruise privileges. Through Luxury Card’s cruise program, receive privileges on over 20 cruise lines, including cabin upgrades, private cocktail events, shipboard credits and special shipboard services.
  • Jet charter services. Get up to $350 in credits toward chauffeured transfers and $350 in credits per flight toward inflight catering.
  • Sentient Jet. You can buy 20-hour Jet Cards instead of the normal 25-hour cards. Plus, get a complimentary hour of flight time, a $1,500 Mastercard gift card and a $500 credit toward premium catering or ground transportation.
  • Car rental privileges. Get benefits with Alamo, Enterprise, National, Avis and Budget, including discounts and guaranteed upgrades.
  • Chauffeured service. Get perks with Carey International and EmpireCLS, including a $50 discount on your first booking, a 10% discount on base rates and complimentary vehicle upgrades.
  • Wireless communication. Get special pricing on high-speed pocket Wi-Fi, low-cost Wi-Fi calling and satellite phone rental, which help you stay connected during your travels.
  • DUFL. This travel caching service stores your clothing in a DUFL closet, delivering your items to you before you arrive at your destination. When you leave, DUFL will pick up your clothes, dry clean them and have them ready for your next trip. Get two trips free through Luxury Card.
  • ARMARIUM. Access luxury fashion rentals. With Luxury Card, get 50% off your first rental, a 25% continuous discount and complimentary shipping.

Garde Robe. This luxury wardrobe management service stores and delivers your garments. Through Luxury Card, you’ll get a $750 credit toward a one-year membership.

If you can leverage these perks, your card could pay for itself many times over — even if its main benefits aren’t spectacular.

Deeper dive: Special amenities and experiences offer more value from your card

Luxury Card special amenities include:

  • Entertainment events and hospitality. Get into sought-after entertainment events — even some that are sold out.
  • Restaurants and dining. Luxury Card curates over 900 of the best restaurants worldwide. You’ll enjoy priority reservations, complimentary appetizers, private kitchen tours, chef visits and more.
  • The Ultimate Golf Program. Gain entry to highly acclaimed golf courses, tournaments and events.
  • Canyon Ranch. This provider offers healthy-living and luxury-spa vacations. By meeting minimum-stay requirements in Tucson, Arizona, or Lenox, Massachusetts, you’ll receive a multitude of perks. These include 25% off a package stay, an upgrade to an Executive room, a $320 service allowance and more.
  • The Red Door Salon & Spa. Get 20% off services and products with this facial and salon provider.
  • Mastercard Priceless. Access Priceless Cities, Priceless Golf and Priceless Surprises for exclusive experiences and gifts.

You also get access to Luxury Card EXPERIENCES in such categories as activity and adventure, arts and culture, culinary and wine, family, and sports and entertainment.

Deeper dive: Enjoy select purchase and travel protections with your card

You’ll receive other protections when you pay for eligible items with your card:

  • Cell phone protection. Pay for your wireless bill with your card, and your phone is covered against theft or damage. This benefit is offered by Mastercard and allows $1,000 in annual coverage.
  • Baggage delay insurance. Get reimbursed up to $100 a day for three qualifying days maximum if your baggage is delayed by more than four hours.
    Many other cards require minimum delays of six hours, but some offer insurance for more qualifying days. Insurance with your Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ doesn’t apply when you arrive at your primary residence.
  • Travel accident insurance. You’re covered for common carrier accidental death and dismemberment for up to $250,000. Unfortunately, the Luxury Card website doesn’t mention a 24-hour travel accident benefit. Meanwhile, select Chase cards offer $500,000 to $1,000,000 in common carrier insurance along with 24-hour travel accident benefits.
  • Auto rental collision waiver. This is secondary car rental coverage, meaning it applies after your personal insurance.
  • Standard Mastercard protections. Enjoy ID theft protection and $0 liability protection. Call Mastercard Global Service if your card is lost or stolen, or if you need an emergency cash advance. Also, leverage Mastercard travel assistance when you need information about your destination, medical help or referrals to legal services.
  • Trip cancellation and interruption. You’ll receive secondary coverage up to $5,000 per insured person for eligible accidental events.

While the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ doesn’t offer the most comprehensive collection of purchase and travel protections, it gives you more benefits than you’ll find with some other providers.

Deeper dive: Other benefits

As you’d expect, the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ has no foreign transaction fees. Unlike many other travel products, however, the card has quite a good balance transfer intro APR: 0% for 15 billing cycles, then 16.49% variable.

The Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ is constructed with stainless steel on its front and carbon on the back, giving it the heft you’d look for in a premium card.

You’ll also get special World Elite Mastercard benefits that can help you offset the card’s annual fee:

  • Postmates. Get $5 off qualifying orders of at least $25.
  • Lyft. After enrolling, take five qualifying rides in a month. You’ll receive a $10 Lyft credit. You can earn this credit each month.
  • Boxed. After creating a Boxed account, you’ll earn 5% cash rewards on qualifying orders.
  • ShopRunner. Your card lets you sign up for a complimentary ShopRunner membership, which gives you free two-day shipping and free returns on qualifying purchases.
  • Fandango. Join Fandango VIP and earn double points on qualifying purchases. Earning 500 points gets you a $5 reward.
  • Onefinestay. Receive a 10% discount on qualifying bookings.

Lastly, you’ll receive a complimentary subscription to LUXURY MAGAZINE, a quarterly publication that covers luxury travel, fashion, sports, tech, design and more.

What to watch out for

While the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ can be a strong pick for its less-noticeable features, it lags behind other premium cards in marquee benefits. Negatives include:

  • $495 annual fee. You might question whether it’s worth paying this premium price.
  • No signup bonus. This is a severe weakness that places the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ far behind its competitors.
  • No point transfers. The lack of point transfers severely limits the value you’ll get from your rewards.
  • High cost for authorized users. You’ll pay $195 per authorized user you add to your account. Premium-card competitors often charge just $75 per authorized user.
  • Weak annual travel credit. Other premium cards offer much better travel credits.
  • Rewards are unimpressive by comparison. On their own, they’re not horrible. But when you consider what you could earn with the competition, you’ll find you’re leaving a lot of value on the table.
  • Global Entry/TSA PreCheck credits renew every five years. Other cards may offer these credits every four to four-and-a-half years.

Deeper dive: The lack of rewards transfers is a big negative in today’s premium-travel world

Major competitors such as Chase, Amex, Citi and Capital One all offer reward transfers. The advantage of this is you can get more value from your points or miles by moving them to select travel partners.

The Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™‘s lack of point transfers means your reward values are always capped at 2% — disappointing for a premium travel card. Meanwhile, you can enjoy up to 10% reward rates with other premium cards.

Is the annual fee worth it?

At $495 a year, the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ competes in the luxury travel space. Unfortunately, for most consumers it won’t offer enough value to justify its cost.

Its major benefits are matched or exceeded by those of other cards. Furthermore, its rewards bring no enticing advantage, it has an unimpressive travel credit and it doesn’t even offer a signup bonus. The Priority Pass Select benefit offers just a very narrow advantage over other cards: the option to bring unlimited guests at no charge.

The card does have select bright spots, namely its suite of Luxury Card Travel perks. If you can leverage its luxury-provider discounts, special amenities and access to high-class experiences, you may in fact find the card very valuable.

Customer reviews/card rating

The Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ has a consistently poor reputation online. Many consumers say the card brings far less value than it costs. They add that it brings few exclusive features, weak rewards and poor travel credits.

Barclays Bank Delaware has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB), and has been accredited by the bureau since 2001. However, it has an average customer rating of just over 1 out of 5 stars.

The bank currently has around 1,100 customer complaints. Unhappy cardholders mention slow card delivery, unexpected account freezes, disputed charge offs and sudden credit-limit decreases. According to the BBB, Barclays has answered or resolved most customer complaints.

Authorized users or cosigners

You can add authorized users for $195 each. Note that this is a higher cost than the $75 per authorized user you’ll pay with other products such as the Chase Sapphire Reserve® and Citi Prestige® Credit Card.

Spending from authorized users adds rewards to your point balance. Your authorized users will enjoy complimentary Priority Pass Select membership and annual airline credits.

How does the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ compare to other similar cards?

Value of annual travel credits

Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ The Platinum Card® from American Express Chase Sapphire Reserve® Citi Prestige® Credit Card
$100 $200 $300 $250

Effective annual fee after using travel credits

Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ The Platinum Card® from American Express Chase Sapphire Reserve® Citi Prestige® Credit Card
$395 $150 $150 $245

Effective annual fee after using travel credits

Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ The Platinum Card® from American Express Chase Sapphire Reserve® Citi Prestige® Credit Card
$395 $150 $150 $245

Highest estimated rewards rate

Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ The Platinum Card® from American Express Chase Sapphire Reserve® Citi Prestige® Credit Card
2% 10% 6% 10%

Change to signup bonus over time

2016 Current
25,000 points after a $1,500 spend within the first 90 days of account opening No signup bonus

Consider other cards if…

If you want a premium travel card, you’ll find excellent options in the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™‘s biggest competitors. Each card brings a different mix of bonus rewards and defining features.

The Platinum Card® from American Express ($550 annual fee)
This card distinguishes itself with a stellar 5x points on eligible flight and hotel spending, Uber credits, access to Delta SkyClub and Centurion lounges, and gold status in Marriott Bonvoy and Hilton Honors.

Chase Sapphire Reserve® ($450 annual fee)
Earn 3x points on eligible travel and dining after you use your $300 annual travel credit. Chase’s flagship card gives your points 50% more value when you redeem them through Chase Ultimate Rewards. You’ll also get access to a suite of travel and purchase protections that many other card providers don’t offer anymore.

Citi Prestige® Credit Card ($495 annual fee)
The Citi Prestige® Credit Card offers 5x points on air travel and restaurants — an excellent rate — as well as 3x points on hotels and cruise lines. What makes it unique is its complimentary fourth night when you make a hotel booking of at least four nights through ThankYou Rewards. You can get this benefit twice each calendar year.

Cards to pair with the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™

The Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ offers a solid 1.5% cashback redemption rate, but it’s a poor choice for common bonus categories such as travel and dining. Since you’re already paying a high annual fee for the card, consider less-expensive products that fill in the gaps for rewards. These include:

Redeeming points

To redeem your points, visit MyLuxuryCard.com or call the number on the back of your card.

You can use points for these redemptions:

  • Airfare
  • Hotel stays and car rentals
  • Cash back: statement credit or direct deposit to a US checking or savings account
  • Gift cards and gift certificates
  • Merchandise

How much are Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ points worth?

Your points are worth different values depending on how they’re redeemed:

Redemption Starts at Redemption rate
Airfare 50 points for $1 in airfare 2%
Cash back 67 points for $1 in cash back 1.5%
Hotel stays and car rentals 100 points for $1 in hotels or car rentals 1%
Gift cards, gift certificates and merchandise Varies depending on redemption Varies depending on redemption

The standard redemption rate across the industry is 1%. Note while the Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ offers a higher direct redemption rate than some competitors, other cards offer higher earn rates and ultimately offer better reward rates.

How to make the most out of your card

If you’ve been approved for the card, take these steps to use the card to its highest potential:

  • Create an online account. Visit the Luxury Card website and register your card. With an online account, you can view your balance and manage your card account.
  • Read your benefits booklet. You’ll find benefits available to you as a Luxury Card member that can help you make your card’s annual fee worth paying.
  • Create a rewards strategy. Understand the reward rates you can achieve with this card, and plan how you’ll use it for purchases. You may decide not to use it at all for spending, and instead use other cards that offer stronger rewards.
  • Use your Global Entry/TSA PreCheck credit. Apply for your chosen program well before your travel dates, as approval could take months.
  • Take advantage of Luxury Card Concierge. You may be surprised at the types of requests you can make. By using this service often, you may even find your card pays for itself.
  • Leverage Priority Pass Select membership. You can bring unlimited guests into Priority Pass lounges — an uncommon advantage among travel cards.

How to upgrade or downgrade your card

To upgrade to the Luxury Card Mastercard® Gold Card™ ($995 annual fee) or downgrade to the Luxury Card Mastercard® Titanium Card™ ($195 annual fee), call the support number on the back of your card.

Bottom line

The Luxury Card Mastercard® Black Card™ is visually attractive, but its benefits are lacking for its price. It offers glimpses of value, such as its unlimited-guest policy with Priority Pass Select and strong savings with select luxury providers. For the most part, however, it’s outclassed by premium-card competitors.

If you’re not sure this card is right for you, consider other travel products, including no-annual-fee, midtier and luxury cards.

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