5 Things to Know About ‘Luxury Card’ Credit Cards
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Luxury Card, the provider of a trio of glitzy credit cards for high-end customers, is all about flash. The company markets three premium cards with hefty annual fees, touting their metal construction and fancy perks:
Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Titanium Card™, $195 annual fee.
Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Black Card™, $495 annual fee.
Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Gold Card™, $995 annual fee.
But the value of these cards is relatively lackluster when you take the high annual fees into account. Here’s what you should know about these offers.
Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Titanium Card™
Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Black Card™
Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Gold Card™
1. The cards are pricey
Issued by Barclays, the cards in the Luxury Card portfolio have annual fees in the triple digits. The Mastercard Gold Card is the priciest, with a fee just south of $1,000 a year, while the Mastercard Titanium Card is the least expensive. In the middle is the Mastercard Black Card, which launched in 2016 as a rebranded version of the old Visa Black.
The cards can get even more costly if you want to add another person to the account. For each authorized user, you’ll pay:
$95 on the Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Titanium Card™.
$195 on the Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Black Card™.
$295 on the Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Gold Card™.
A high annual fee on a credit card isn’t necessarily a deal-breaker if you can get more value out of the card in rewards and benefits. But with these cards, that can be hard to do.
2. The rewards are just OK
The Luxury Card website says cardmembers “receive leading airfare and cash back redemption rates.” But dig a little deeper and the rewards aren't actually better than the competition.
Here’s how much they're worth:
Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Titanium Card™: Points are worth 2 cents apiece for airfare redemptions and 1 cent apiece for other redemptions.
Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Black Card™. Points are worth 2 cents apiece for airfare redemptions, 1.5 cents apiece for cash back and 1 cent apiece for other redemptions.
Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Gold Card™: Points are worth 2 cents apiece for both airfare redemptions and cash back and 1 cent apiece for other redemptions.
Sure, the points on these cards can be worth up to 2 cents apiece, which is double the standard 1 cent per point offered on many cards. But you'll only earn 1 point per dollar spent. Assuming you redeem all your rewards for 2 cents per point, this is essentially the same earnings rate as Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card. Each mile is worth 1 cent, but you'll earn 2 miles per dollar on most purchases.
Even though the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card has an annual fee of $395, you have the potential to eke even more value out of your points by transferring them to a travel loyalty program. This card and its chief competitors the Chase Sapphire Reserve® (annual fee: $550) and The Platinum Card® from American Express (annual fee: $695) have multiple airline and hotel partners that allow you to transfer your points to loyalty programs at a 1-to-1 rate (Terms apply). If you transferred points on one of these cards to a partner to take advantage of a high-value redemption, you might be able to get, say, 5 cents of value out of each point.
The cards in the Luxury Card collection don’t have transfer partners; the maximum value you can get out of each point is 2 cents.
3. They're made of heavy metal
The cards from the Luxury Card collection are mostly unspectacular, but they do stand out in one way: They all have attractive metal designs.
Luxury Card notes that it has 70 patents issued globally for its metal card constructions. It also emphasizes the cards’ heft: The cards each weigh 22 grams, according to Luxury Card, making them heavier than other premium cards made of metal. The Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Gold Card™ — the one with a $995 annual fee — is even plated in 24-karat gold.
4. Some of the perks are fancy
As is usually the case with premium cards, the offerings in the Luxury Card collection come with some swanky perks. Here are some of the most valuable:
Annual airline credit. The Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Gold Card™ offers $200 in annual air travel credit toward qualifying purchases. The Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Black Card™ offers $100 a year in such credit.
Credit for Global Entry or TSA Precheck application fee. These programs can get you through airport security and customs faster. The credit is available on the Black and Gold cards, but not on the Titanium.
Priority Pass Select membership. This perk, which gets you into airport lounges around the world, is available on the Black and Gold cards, but not on the Titanium.
Airport escort. With all the cards, you can have an agent "accompany you through the airport, bypassing crowds and speeding up formalities," according to the issuer's website.
Concierge. All three cards offer 24/7 access to the Luxury Card Concierge. This service assists with such tasks as recovering items left behind at a hotel, planning a special event or arranging a last-minute delivery.
5. Overall, the cards are so-so
The cards in the Luxury Card portfolio are decent, but for the cost, you can do better.
Consider this: In the Luxury Card family, only one card — the Luxury Card™ Mastercard® Gold Card™, which has an annual fee of $995 — offers $200 in airline credits, a Global Entry or TSA Precheck application credit and Priority Pass Select membership benefits. Meanwhile, the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® and The Platinum Card® from American Express offer similar benefits and more at a fraction of the price.
To be clear, the cards in the Luxury Card portfolio aren’t terrible. As showy premium cards, they’re OK. But if you’re spending a fortune on an annual fee, you might want more than that. Find our picks for the best credit cards here.
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