Despite having to pay more than other banking options, much of the appeal of credit cards are the lavish rewards and benefits that come with them.
From up to 100% back on travel expenses offered by Discovery Bank, to 24/7 personal financial assistance with Nedbank, local banks are catering to high-income people with special lifestyle and business needs.
The cards themselves have become statements of status; many follow the same design layout of being all black and minimalistic, but some banks differentiate themselves, notably Discovery with its bright purple vertical card.
BusinessTech looked at some of the most exclusive bank cards available in South Africa:
Discovery Bank Purple Wealth Suite
Discovery Bank offers two different banking products, the Discovery Bank Purple Suite for South Africa’s wealthy and the Discovery Bank Purple Wealth Suite for the super-rich.
The qualifications to be considered for an invitation are unknown; however, the standard Discovery Bank Purple Suite requirements are still high. A prospective cardholder must earn no less than R2.5 million, the equivalent of a monthly salary of R208,000.
According to Discovery, the Wealth Suite offers its cardholders a metal credit card that can reward cardholders with up to 100% off on local and international business class flights for themselves and a spouse.
Other rewards include luxury accommodation through the Purple Hotel Collection, unlimited airport lounge visits, a more personalised banking experience, better rates on investments, and free gym memberships at any Virgin Active or Planet Fitness health club in South Africa.
FNB Private Wealth
The FNB Private Wealth Credit Card is available for earners of an annual income above R1.8 million or people with a net asset value over R15 million.
According to FNB, the card itself is metal, making it more resilient, durable and environmentally friendly. The main draw of this card is the exclusive eBucks lifestyle benefits that come with it, up to 55 days’ interest-free purchases and personalised interest rates.
At a relatively low initiation fee compared to other exclusive cards of R175, cardholders have exclusive access to benefits such as private banking advice, specialised lending, and access to over 1,000 airport lounges globally.
Nedbank Private Wealth
The Nedbank Private Wealth Bundle Account costs R468 per month and gives members; a current account, a Nedbank Private Wealth Visa Infinite, an American Express Cheque Card, and a Nedbank Private Wealth Visa Infinite and American Express Credit Card.
It is, however, only available to people who apply or are invited. For your application to be considered, you require a personal annual income of no less than R1.5 million or investable assets with the value of at least R5 million excluding the property you live in.
Nedbank stressed that its 24-hour Service Suite available exclusively to these cardholders is dedicated to assisting with banking inquiries, lifestyle needs, booking events, flower deliveries, or redeeming rewards.
Travel benefits include multi-trip travel insurance with Visa Infinite that can cover up to $2.5 million (R38,300,000).
Standard Bank Signature Banking
The Standard Bank Signature credit card sports a classy black and blue-accented look, a R480 monthly fee, and a minimum monthly income requirement of R92,000.
While the card is not invite-only, you have to reach out to Standard Bank if you wish to own the card. The main benefits of owning this card include the ability to grow one’s wealth through bespoke portfolio management, a dedicated banker to assist with any financial queries, the option to bank offshore, and 24/7 emergency services.
Investec Private Banking
Investec, through its Private Banking Account, offers prospective clients a Visa platinum credit card with up to 45 interest-free days on card purchases, unlimited free ATM withdrawals locally and internationally, as well as complimentary local and international lounge access.
This credit card is reserved only for people with an annual salary of R800,000.
RMB Private Fusion Account
The fully metal RMB credit card allows for personalised credit solutions, complimentary access to SLOW and Bidvest Premier Lounges, and interest-free 55 days.
The RMB Private Fusion Account shares similar benefits to the FNB eBucks reward system, which allows for savings on tech, travel, and accommodation.
According to RMB, you need to earn R750,000 or more per annum or have a net asset value of more than R15 million to qualify for this card.
Absa Private Banking
The second purple card on this list, the Absa Private Banking credit card, is Absa’s solution to the needs of their upper-income clientele. To qualify, you need a monthly salary of R62,500.
This card offers clients no transaction fees on purchases, up to 57 days interest-free, a credit limit of up to R228,000 and a swipe limit of R90,000.
The Visa Signature credit card also includes exclusive global assistance services, travel insurance and medical or legal referrals.