Personal Finance

Worth the millennial’s while?

Vivek Ananth | Updated on October 17, 2019 Published on October 17, 2019

Attraction The card offers healthy cashback for online purchases on both Amazon and Flipkart   -  Mixmike

The card offers better choice and flexibility than similar cards from Amazon and Flipkart

Love them or hate them, you can’t ignore them. Millennials are a much-wooed consumer category, especially in the ongoing festive season.

HDFC Bank has also got on to the bandwagon and launched a range of debit, credit and prepaid cards named ‘Millenia’ targeting the young crowd.

Now, it’s not that only ‘millennials’ can opt for the Millennia cards — anyone up to the age of 65 can go for them. Age is, after all, but a number. But the Millennia cards of HDFC Bank do focus more on young customers who love shopping online and use Amazon and Flipkart’s co-branded credit cards.

HDFC Bank’s Millennia credit card offers benefits that are quite similar to the Amazon Pay ICICI Bank Credit Card and the Flipkart Axis Bank Credit Card, including fuel surcharge waiver.

The key feature in all these cards is a graded cashback/reward system — maximum cashback or reward points are offered for online purchases on Amazon or Flipkart, followed by purchases with other online partner merchants, and the least cashback is given for offline purchases.

So, is HDFC Bank’s Millennia credit card worth the millennial’s while?

Joining fee

For starters, there is a joining fee of ₹1,000 on the Millennia credit card, and this continues as a yearly fee from the second year. If you spend ₹30,000 within the first 90 days, the joining fee will be refunded. Also, if you spend more than ₹1 lakh in a year on the card, the next year’s charge is waived off.

Likewise, on the Flipkart Axis Bank credit card, there is a joining and yearly fee of ₹500, but if you spend more than ₹2 lakh in a year on the card, the next year’s charge is waived off. The Amazon Pay ICICI Bank credit card scores a brownie point here — there are no joining or yearly fees.

Rewards

The HDFC Bank Millenia credit card reward points are earned in the form of cashback — that is, a certain portion of your purchase amount will be returned to you as cash points (of equal amount) and, when redeemed, these points will reduce the bill amount in the next statement.

But these cash points will be credited to your balance statement only after you accumulate at least 2,500 cash points, and only in multiples of ₹500.

The maximum cashback — whether through online or offline spends — that can be accumulated in a month is ₹2,250. Any unredeemed cash points will expire after a year.

The cash points can also be redeemed on HDFC Bank’s SmartBuy portal against flight and hotel bookings and on rewards catalogue items.

How much is the cashback on transactions? If you use HDFC Bank’s Smartbuy portal or Payzapp payment app to shop at Amazon or Flipkart or to book flights or hotels, and pay online through the Millennia credit card, you will earn the maximum cashback of 5 per cent on your spends.

In essence, to get the maximum cashback, the above purchases have to be routed through the Smartbuy portal or Payzapp payment app and the payment has to be made using the Millennia card.

On such purchases, you can earn a maximum cashback of ₹1,000 a month for the first six months and ₹750 a month thereafter.

On all other online spends using the Millennia card, the cashback is 2.5 per cent. The minimum transaction amount to earn any cashback (5 per cent or 2.5 per cent) for online transactions is ₹2,000. For offline transactions, the cashback is 1 per cent of the transaction amount if you spend over ₹100.

Coming to the competition, the Amazon Pay ICICI Bank credit card offers 5 per cent cashback of the transaction value on all purchases by its Prime customers on purchases made on Amazon.in. If you are not an Amazon Prime member, you get a lower 2 per cent cashback on spends on Amazon.in.

For online purchases from partner merchants through Amazon Pay, the cashback on the credit card transaction is 2 per cent. Any payments using the card made outside of Amazon.in and Amazon Pay earns only 1 per cent cashback. On the Amazon Pay ICICI Bank credit card, there is no minimum transaction value for earning cashback and no limit for total cashbacks in a month. The cashbacks are credited not to your credit card but to your Amazon Pay account from where they can be used to pay for purchases.

On the Flipkart Axis Bank credit card, the cashback is 5 per cent on spends on Flipkart and the Flipkart-controlled entities Myntra and 2GUD. On partner merchants such as Uber, MakeMyTrip and UrbanClap, the cashback is 4 per cent.

For all other payments using the credit card, the cashback is 1.5 per cent. There is no minimum transaction value for earning cashback and no limit for total cashbacks in a month. These cashbacks are reflected in your credit card account in the next billing cycle and reduces the amount due.

On a comparative basis, the fees charged by HDFC Bank’s Millennia card and its conditions regarding cashback credit seem to be dampeners.

On the other hand, the card scores over the competition on some parameters. One, with a single card, you can get healthy cashback on both Amazon and Flipkart, and also on flight and hotel bookings. Also, the Millennia card offers cashback on EMI transactions too.

HDFC Millennia credit card also offers milestone benefits in the first year such as 1,000 cash points on spending ₹1 lakh. After paying the joining fee in the first year, it also offers a welcome benefit of 1,000 cash points.

All said, whichever credit card you opt for, be sure to be disciplined in your payment behavior. Make your card payment on time and in full – each time, every time. Else, the high penalty and interest costs will far outweigh the benefits that the cards offer.

Published on October 17, 2019
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