Black credit cards

If you're in the dark about the best type of card, black credit cards are often at the top of the pack. Find out how these premium cards work and the benefits on offer.

Updated

Black credit cards are one of the most exclusive types of card, designed for the biggest earners and spenders, with features ranging from generous rewards programs and insurance policies to dedicated concierge services and travel credits. They’re often invite-only.

Find the right card for you

See if you’ll be accepted for a range of cards before applying, without harming your credit score.

What is a black credit card?

A black credit card is a premium credit card that offers more status and benefits than standard, gold or platinum credit cards. The use of the term “black” for this type of credit card refers to the level of the account, similar to how airline and hotel programs have different status levels.

However, there are some standard credit cards that are also labelled as “black” cards by the provider. These cards may offer more benefits than other similar cards, but without the exclusivity of the elite black cards.

What benefits can I find with a black credit card?

Black credit cards offer a range of exclusive features that vary between cards. A few notable features may include:

  • Higher credit limits
  • Special card construction, such as titanium or carbon
  • Greater travel insurance coverage
  • Complimentary status upgrades for hotel and airline programs
  • Special upgrades at select hotels
  • Travel credits
  • Access to hundreds of airport lounges around the world
  • 24/7 concierge service
  • Access to special events and experiences

What are the most prestigious credit cards?

Compare black credit cards

Data indicated here is updated daily
Name Product Max. intro bonus Default earn-rate Annual/monthly fees Rep. APR Link Incentive Representative example
Coutts & Co Silk Credit Card Visa
N/A
N/A
£0
14.7% (variable)
More Info
Thank You From Coutts - as spending increases cardholders automatically become eligible for a choice of gifts.
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 14.71% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 14.7% APR (variable).
NatWest Reward Black Credit Card Mastercard
N/A
1 point per £2 spent
£84 per annum. Reward Black Current Account holders: £0 per annum
37.1% (variable)
More Info
1% Rewards earned on supermarket spend and 0.5% at their petrol stations, at least 1% Rewards earned at MyRewards retailers and 0.5% everywhere else when shopping at home and abroad. 5 Rewards is £5 when redeemed. Rewards can be converted into money and transferred to a current account, exchanged for gift cards or tickets with some retailers doubling their value or converted into money and donated to one of the RBS Group chosen charities.
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 18.9% (variable) p.a. with a fee of £84 per annum. Reward Black Current Account holders: £0 per annum, your representative rate is 37.1% APR (variable).
Royal Bank of Scotland Reward Black Credit Card Mastercard
N/A
1 point per £2 spent
£84 per annum. Reward Black Current Account holders: £0 per annum
37.1% (variable)
More Info
1% Rewards earned on supermarket spend and 0.5% at their petrol stations, at least 1% Rewards earned at MyRewards retailers and 0.5% everywhere else when shopping at home and abroad. 5 Rewards is £5 when redeemed. Rewards can be converted into money and transferred to a current account, exchanged for gift cards or tickets with some retailers doubling their value or converted into money and donated to one of the RBS Group chosen charities.
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 18.9% (variable) p.a. with a fee of £84 per annum. Reward Black Current Account holders: £0 per annum, your representative rate is 37.1% APR (variable).
Santander World Elite Mastercard
N/A
0.5% cashback
£15 per month
49.8% (variable)
More Info
0.5% on £1 to £3000 of monthly spend. Maximum of £15 cashback paid per month. Cashback paid Monthly into Card Account. Maximum spend for cashback purposes is limited to credit limit.
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 18.9% (variable) p.a. with a fee of £15 per month, your representative rate is 49.8% APR (variable).
HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard
40,000 points
2 points per £1 spent
£195 per annum
59.3% (variable)
More Info
2 points for every £1 spend in the UK. 4 points for every £1 spend outside the UK. 40,000 Anniversary Points Boost - qualifying spend £12K in 12 months from account opening. Points can be redeemed for airline frequent flyer miles, retail vouchers from selected stores and luxury wines and champagnes or can be used to make donations made to the charity of the customer's choice.
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 18.9% (variable) p.a. with a fee of £195 per annum, your representative rate is 59.3% APR (variable).
loading

Compare up to 4 providers

Approval for any credit card will depend on your status. The APR shown represents the interest rate offered to most successful applicants. Depending on your personal circumstances the APR you're offered may be higher, or you may not be offered credit at all. Fees and rates are subject to change without notice. It's always wise to check the terms of any deal before you borrow.

How much does a black credit card cost?

As you’d expect, the perks offered by the best black credit cards can often come with a premium price tag. Depending on the card, you may be faced with an annual fee in the thousands of pounds, though many black cards have annual fees around £300 or less.

Who should get a black credit card?

Most black credit cards are designed for people with high incomes and high monthly charges. They’re also usually reserved for those with excellent credit scores.

But meeting the application requirements doesn’t necessarily mean you should get a black credit card. If you never travel, for example, you won’t leverage perks like travel credits, airport lounge access and status upgrades in hotel and airline programs. In that case, it might not be worth paying a high annual fee.

On the other hand, if you travel often and love accessing special events through your card, you might find your card pays for itself many times over.

How to compare black credit cards

There are three main factors to consider when comparing black credit cards:

  • Rewards. Black credit cards often don’t have the most powerful rewards, as their main value lies in their benefits. If rewards are important to you, consider a travel card or look into cashback credit cards. When evaluating a black card, check if it offers elevated rewards for certain categories. Then consider your spending in these categories to see if you’re likely to benefit.
  • Complimentary extras. Compare benefits based on what’s valuable to you. Black cards tend to offer certain features across the board, such as Global Entry and access to airport lounges. But you’ll see differences between products, such as varying values of airline fee credits and perks in specific loyalty programs.
  • Fees. Preferably, your card’s benefits will outweigh the annual fee. Consider whether you’ll use perks like airport lounge access and travel credits. Additionally, look into your spending and see whether you’ll earn enough rewards to offset the annual fee.

What are the alternatives to black credit cards?

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold Credit Card

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold Card

  • 20,000 Membership Rewards point welcome bonus
  • 2 complimentary airport lounge visits per year
  • No annual fee in year 1

Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 22.2% (variable) p.a. with an annual fee of £140 (£0 in first year), your representative APR is 56.6% APR (variable).

Promoted

Bottom line

Not everyone will qualify for the most exclusive black credit cards, which is part of the appeal. This type of card comes with a high annual fee, robust luxury features and is often available by invitation only.

However, there are some black cards that offer better rewards and benefits, without the associated cost. You also don’t have to get a black card to enjoy high-class travel benefits. If you don’t meet the criteria or are looking for a more affordable option, compare travel credit cards and see if you can find the alternative that’s right for you.

Frequently asked questions

Find the right card for you

See if you’ll be accepted for a range of cards before applying, without harming your credit score.

We show offers we can track - that's not every product on the market...yet. Unless we've said otherwise, products are in no particular order. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations of these) aren't ratings, though we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it. This is subject to our terms of use. When you make major financial decisions, consider getting independent financial advice. Always consider your own circumstances when you compare products so you get what's right for you.

More guides on Finder

  • Sell on Squarespace

    In this expert review you’ll find out exactly what Squarespace can offer you, how much a monthly subscription costs and how this website-building platform stacks up against its competitors.

  • The Best American Express credit cards of October 2020

    Looking for the best American Express Credit credit card? Here’s our guide to Amex’s best in class cards for cashback, rewards and more.

  • Best buy-to-let mortgage

    If you’re in need of a buy-to-let mortgage, this guide looks at how you can find the best one for your circumstances.

  • Best backpacker insurance companies in 2020

    We’ve compiled a list of some of the best backpacker insurance providers in the UK and some top tips on how to get the best deal on your policy.

  • The best cashback credit cards of 2020

    Cashback credit cards let you earn money back on every purchase you make, but which one has the best cashback offer, as well as the best rate?

  • The best balance transfer credit cards of 2020

    Here’s how you can get the best deal on a balance transfer credit card, from finding the longest 0% periods to getting the lowest fees.

  • Best way to invest £10,000

    £10k has just fallen into your lap and you’re not sure what to spend it on. Read our guide and find out how to build yourself a better financial future.

  • Amazon Business Prime American Express Card review 2020

    Amazon’s premium business card, the Amazon Business Prime credit card lets you get the most out of your Amazon business purchases.

  • Compare the best prepaid debit cards for teenagers

    Whether your teenager is travelling overseas or wants to learn how to manage funds when paying on plastic, start comparing prepaid cards with this guide.

  • Compare current accounts

    If you don’t feel like you’re getting much from your bank account, switching has never been easier! Banks and building societies offer up cash and vouchers when you switch, and will handle the boring bits for you.

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder.com provides guides and information on a range of products and services. Because our content is not financial advice, we suggest talking with a professional before you make any decision.

By submitting your comment or question, you agree to our Privacy and Cookies Policy and Terms of Use.

Questions and responses on finder.com are not provided, paid for or otherwise endorsed by any bank or brand. These banks and brands are not responsible for ensuring that comments are answered or accurate.
Go to site