A lifetime free credit card doesn't charge any joining or annual fees. These cards are great for beginners or those new to using credit cards. They're also suitable for people who don't want to pay any fees for having a card. Although most of these cards offer basic benefits and low rewards, some provide good value.
Here are some top credit cards with zero annual fees. We've also highlighted who should consider getting each card to make it easier for you to choose the one that fits your needs best.
|Best Suited For
|Amazon Pay ICICI Credit Card
|Online Shopping at Amazon
|5% cashback on Amazon for Prime users
|IDFC First Select Credit Card
|Rewards and Travel
|10-times more reward points on incremental spends above Rs. 25,000 per month
|HSBC Visa Platinum Credit Card
|Amazon and Swiggy voucher, airport lounge access and cashback under introductory offer*
|IDFC First Millennia Credit Card
|Rewards and Travel
|6X reward points on online spends up to Rs. 20,000 per month
|ICICI Platinum Chip Credit Card
|2 reward points on every Rs. 100 spent
|Dhanaxmi Bank Platinum Credit Card
|5% cashback on departmental store and supermarket spends
The Amazon Pay ICICI Credit Card stands out as a top choice in the lifetime free category, particularly for Amazon Prime users. It offers the highest cashback, credited as Amazon Pay Balance, which can be used for further purchases.
Who should get this card? The Amazon Pay ICICI Credit Card is great for getting cashback, but it's most beneficial for Amazon Prime members. They get the highest cashback. If you're not a Prime member, you still get a 3% cashback on Amazon purchases. This card is good if you shop a lot on Amazon and want decent cashback. If you prefer shopping on Flipkart or Myntra, you might want to consider applying for the Flipkart Axis Bank Credit Card.
The IDFC First Select is a great lifetime free credit card for those seeking a high rewards rate. With this card, the more you spend, the more you earn. It operates on an incremental spend reward points model, meaning your earnings increase when you reach specific spending milestones.
Who should get this card? The IDFC FIRST Select Credit Card stands out as one of the best zero annual fee credit cards, providing decent rewards across all spending categories. For those who frequently shop online, it offers a higher reward rate of 6X on online purchases and 3X on offline transactions. This card is a good choice if you prefer earning rewards over cashback and don't typically make large expenses on your credit card. However, if you're seeking a card with category-specific benefits, this might not be the ideal option for you.
The HSBC Visa Platinum Credit Card is great for those who want shopping and travel benefits without any annual fees. You earn cashback and movie vouchers when you spend a certain amount. Plus, you get more rewards once you spend over Rs. 4 lakhs milestone.
Who should get this card? The HSBC Visa Platinum Credit Card is a great choice if you're new to credit cards and don't want to pay any annual fees. It comes with lots of perks like free vouchers, memberships, rewards, cashback, and movie ticket discounts. The best thing is, you get a sign-up bonus of over Rs. 2,000 without needing to pay any joining fee. So, if you're looking for a basic credit card without annual fees, this one is a good option to consider.
The IDFC FIRST Millennia Credit Card is perfect for big spenders. It gives you 6 times more rewards on online shopping until you reach a certain monthly limit. The best part is, the reward points you earn don't expire, so you can collect them over time and use them for great benefits.
Who should get this card? The IDFC FIRST Millennia Credit Card is an excellent choice for a no-annual-fee credit card with a solid rewards rate. With this card, you can earn up to 10 times more reward points on specific purchases, especially if you often shop online. The overall rewards rate is an impressive 3%, which is higher than many other no-annual-fee credit cards. The card operates on an incremental model, meaning the more you spend, the more you earn. Overall, if you're a frequent online shopper and want a card that provides good value through rewards, this is a great option to consider.
The ICICI Platinum Chip Credit Card is ideal for individuals who are new to credit and are looking for a basic card primarily to build a good credit score. It stands out as one of the best no-annual-fee credit cards.
Who should get this card? The ICICI Platinum Chip Credit Card is a simple credit card that gives reward points on all transactions, but it's particularly beneficial for retail purchases. While it offers basic benefits like dining discounts, fuel surcharge waivers, and vouchers, its main strength lies in its rewards program. However, if you're seeking a credit card with more extensive benefits and a higher rewards rate, you might explore other options in the market. This no-annual-fee card is a good choice for those starting their credit journey and looking for a straightforward credit card.
The Dhanlaxmi Bank Platinum Credit Card stands out as one of the top lifetime free credit cards with cashback benefits. It uniquely caters to practical needs by emphasizing cashback on supermarket and departmental store purchases, which are regular expenses for many individuals.
Who should get this card? The Dhanlaxmi Bank Platinum Credit Card is a great choice among no-annual-fee credit cards, providing cashback on every transaction. It's perfect for those who want to handle their finances wisely while earning cashback. The card gives a straightforward 5% cashback on retail transactions, covering everyday spending categories. If you prefer using your credit card for daily expenses and value cashback over rewards, this card is a suitable option for you.
HSBC Visa Platinum Credit Card and IDFC FIRST Select Credit Card are two lifetime free credit cards that provide access to airport lounges. The HSBC card offers 3 free visits to both domestic and international lounges, while the IDFC FIRST Select card gives you 4 complimentary visits to domestic airport lounges every quarter. Additionally, the IDFC Millennia Credit Card allows access to railway lounges for 4 visits per quarter.
A lifetime free credit card doesn't have any joining or annual fees. However, keep in mind that you may still incur charges such as late payment fees, cash advance fees, and interest, depending on how you use the card.
Well-known banks in India, like ICICI Bank, IDFC FIRST Bank, HSBC Bank, and others, provide lifetime free credit cards. Occasionally, other issuers may also introduce lifetime free credit card offers. To stay updated and find such cards, it's recommended to check the issuer's website for the latest details.
It is important to get clarity on which charges are free. In this case, it seems the issuer has waived off the joining fee but second year onwards, annual/renewal charges will be applicable. Some cards also have the condition that if you use certain facility within a specified period, say the first 90 days, to make the card lifetime free. When you get a free credit card offer, read the terms and conditions in detail to ensure that the card carries no charges whatsoever.