The UAE’s best premium credit cards

UAE credit cards

If there’s one thing that everyone has in common, no matter how much they earn, it’s a joy in finding a good deal. And with the popularity of premium-rate credit cards now skyrocketing, we figured that now is as a good a time of any to delve into the world of credit cards requiring a minimum AED 20,000 salary.

Sure, if you’re earning AED 20,000 per month, you may not need to worry about the pennies too much, but good value is a universal language. With these credit cards, you can rest safe in the knowledge that your hard-earned cash isn’t going to waste, and that you’ll be reaping the rewards that your high salary should earn you.

Standard Chartered Bank Visa Infinite Credit Card
Minimum Salary: AED 30,000  

This card from Standard Chartered requires a monthly salary of AED 30,000 and comes with an AED 1,500 annual fee. Admittedly, it’s free for the first year and the fee can be waived after the first year if your annual retail spend reaches AED 150,000, but clearly this is a card for wealthy people. Still, you do get an awful lot for your money if you can afford one.

For one thing, the Visa Infinite card provides all sorts of lifestyle benefits. The card offers free access to Fitness First gyms in the UAE – and no other credit card in the UAE can offer that. You also get a complimentary round of golf every month, and you can choose from Emirates Golf Club, The Montgomerie, Jumeirah Golf Estates, Dubai Creek Golf & Yacht Club or Saadiyat Golf Club. On top of this, the card gives you 50% off at VOX cinemas, and up to 50% discounts at premium merchants, high-end retailers and dining outlets.

The card will also help you save money on airline tickets thanks to a unique cashback function. Whenever you spend money with the card, you earn reward points that can be redeemed against an airline ticket. If you spend $50,000 (or the equivalent amount in UAE dirhams) on the card, you’ll have enough points for a free round trip to New York. There are other travel benefits, too – for example, you get complimentary Marhaba services at Dubai International Airport, with a free limousine, meet and greet, and lounge access. The card also gives you and a guest unlimited access to over 500 airport lounges worldwide.

What’s more, Standard Chartered currently has a special offer on the Visa Infinite card, which will give new customers a new iPhone 7 Plus. Simply apply for the card, pay AED 499 and get your new phone after making your first purchase. Then, all you need to do is spend AED 10,000 per month on your card for the next six months.

Apply now!

The American Express Platinum Credit Card
Minimum Salary: AED 22,250

This is the daddy of the ‘Amex’ cards, and it comes with all the benefits you’d expect of a top-tier credit card. Naturally, you do have to pay quite a bit for the privilege, though – along with a required minimum monthly salary of AED 22,250, you’ll also need to pay a yearly fee of AED 700 to gain access to the Platinum Card.

For that, though, you get reward points that can be turned into air miles on 12 leading airlines, including Emirates and Etihad. Also, you’ll get Priority Pass membership, which gives the cardholder and guest access to over 700 airport lounges in over 100 countries. And, sticking with the travel theme, the card offers complimentary travel accident and inconvenience insurance.

But it isn’t just the realm of travel where the Amex Platinum card shines – it also provides worldwide savings on travel, leisure, dining and premium shopping. You’ll also get complimentary retail protection insurance, as well as worldwide customer care and emergency card replacement.

What’s more, American Express currently offers the card with up to 56 days of interest-free credit, after which the interest goes up to 2.99% per month – which still isn’t bad in the world of credit cards.

Apply now!

HSBC Black Credit Card
Minimum Salary: AED 50,000

With a minimum monthly salary requirement of AED 50,000, and an annual fee of AED 2,000, this is easily the most expensive credit card on this list. But then again, the Black Card does offer a lot.

For starters, when you sign up, you get a bonus of 250,000 air miles straight off the bat. These miles can be redeemed for flights with any airline, at any time, to any destination. The card doesn’t just help you save money on flights, either – it offers over 8,000 buy-one-get-one-free offers across 15 countries, and you get two-for-one movie tickets at VOX Cinemas in the UAE.

There are other lifestyle benefits, too – the Black Card offers free valet parking at selected Valtrans locations around Dubai and Abu Dhabi, and it offers free access to the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship. There are also a host of Premier World privileges that come with the card, as well as a complementary round of golf and discounts at the Al Badia Golf Club and Saadiyat Beach Golf Club.

Citibank Citi Prestige Credit Card
Minimum Salary: AED 30,000

Instead of focusing on one particular set of benefits, the Citibank Citi Prestige card simply carpet bombs its holders with benefits from all over the place – meaning you get travel, leisure, finance and points benefits all in one go. Certainly, that’ll be worth the AED 1,500 annual fee for some.

So what do you get with the Prestige card? Well, in terms of lifestyle, you get a complimentary fourth night at any hotel booked through the Citi Prestige Global Concierge. And speaking of that concierge service, it’s a 24-7 service available from anywhere in the world, designed to assist card holders with everything from making dinner reservations to taking care of travel requests. The card also offers a free round of golf once a month at the Montgomerie, Al Badia Golf Course in Dubai, and Yas Golf Club in Abu Dhabi.

In terms of travel, the card gives you and a guest unlimited access to over 650 airport lounges worldwide, as well as complimentary Marhaba meet-and-greet twice a year at Dubai International Airport. You’ll also get complimentary travel insurance, and up to 100% rebate on travel-related purchases (obviously conditions apply to that last one).

Apply now!

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