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Axis Magnus Credit Card Review

Axis Magnus Credit Card

Axis Bank had launched the Axis Magnus credit card sometime in 2019 and it remained a mediocre card back then. However, recent changes that Axis has done with the Magnus credit card’s benefits and simultaneous devaluation of the HDFC Infinia and DCB has made Axis Magnus a very good card to hold. In this article, I will list down my views on the Axis Magnus credit card and a comparison with HDFC Infinia and DCB, to see if Magnus is really better than Infinia/DCB.

Axis Magnus Credit Card

Axis Bank Magnus credit card

Fees and Eligibility:

  • Joining fees and annual fees INR10,000 + GST. Fee waived at annual spends of 15lakhs

Rewards and Benefit:

  • Joining Benefit:
    • Joining benefit of 10K Tata Cliq voucher or 10k worth domestic flight ticket.
    • This is applicable on renewal too, provided the annual fee is paid.
  • Recurring Benefits:
    • BOGO on BMS up to Rs. 500 off on the second ticket for a maximum of 5 movie/non-movie bookings in a month.
  • Reward Points:
    • Standard Reward Rate: 12 reward points on every INR200 spent. 1 Reward point = 0.20 paisa (1.2% reward rate).
    • Accelerated Reward Rate: 5x reward points (i.e. 60 RPs) on every INR200 spent on travel spending via Travel Edge (6% reward rate).
    • Milestone Reward Rate: 25,000 RPs worth INR5,000 on monthly spends of INR1Lakh (i.e. 5% reward rate)
  • Lounge Access:
    • Domestic: Unlimited complimentary domestic lounge access to primary and add-on card members.
    • International: Unlimited complimentary lounge access to the primary cardholder. 8 guest visits are allowed in a year.
    • Airport Concierge Service: 8 complimentary end-to-end VIP services at the airports within India.

My views on Axis Magnus credit card

The Axis Magnus credit card has been in existence since 2019. However, given the low reward rate of 1.2%, high annual fee (10K) and very high fee waiver threshold (15Lakhs) the card remained very mediocre. However, Axis Bank has made some changes in the reward program making the card quite interesting. The changes are

  • Monthly Milestone Benefits: 25,000 RPs worth INR5,000 on monthly spending of INR1Lakh (i.e. 5% reward rate). This one change alone increases the reward rate on the card from 1.2% to 6.2%. Only wallet spends are excluded in the calculations.
  • Accelerated Reward Rate: 5x reward points (i.e. 60 RPs) on every INR200 spent on travel spending via Travel Edge (6% reward rate). Thru its Travel Edge portal, travel bookings will earn a 6% reward rate
  • International lounge access: Unlimited international lounge access via Priority Pass for the primary cardholder.

The introduction of a monthly milestone benefit equivalent to INR5K significantly changes the reward rate of the card to 6%+. Further, since all spends are included, except wallet load, one can seriously think of using this card as a primary card as long as monthly spends are above 1lakh. This can be a boon for people running high utility (read electricity) and fuel bills every month.

Another feature on this card, the airport concierge service (a glorified name for porter service) on Indian airports can be useful for people who travel frequently with heavy luggage or in large groups.  For normal travel, I don’t think this service makes any difference.

One another feature that is unique to Axis Magnus is BOGO on BMS for up to 500 for a maximum of 5 movie/non-movie bookings in a month. This is saying that you can literally go to movies every week at 50% off. This feature sounds great on paper, but I feel is impractical in practice, as very few cardholders will tend to watch movies/theatre every week religiously.

Axis Magnus vs HDFC Infinia vs HDFC Diners Black

Since the devaluation of HDFC cards and tweaking of benefits on Axis Magnus happened at the same time, it’s quite obvious for everyone to compare these cards.

I also compared these cards, since I own a DCB and the devaluation has been quite sharp on DCB. However, in the comparison calculator below it’s quite clear that Axis Magnus is still a notch below compared to HDFC Infinia/DCB.

For most of the use cases or spend patterns, Infinia/DCB end up giving a better reward rate than Axis Magnus. Nonetheless, there are scenarios where Axis Magnus would end up giving a better rate. These are mainly cases where one ends up spending more than 1lakh on electricity, insurance, rent or fuel bills every month.

The highlight of the Axis Magnus credit card is its clean reward structure. You spend, you get a 1.2% base reward rate and if you spend more than a lakh in a month you get an additional 5% reward rate. The challenge with HDFC cards is that the 5x/10x program has now become 2x/3x/5x/10x, making it difficult to remember the reward rate you will eventually get.

Features where Axis Magnus outscores HDFC Cards

There are a few features that make Axis Magnus stand out in comparison to HDFC twins. Have listed them below

  • No 70% rule: HDFC cards has this rule that allows only 70% of the booking amount can be set off against points. Axis Magnus as of now has a clean structure. The entire reward balance can be taken as a statement credit at a 20paise rate.
  • Airport concierge service: While this is nothing more than a glorified porter service at airports, the probability that I will use this is higher than the complimentary golf rounds that HDFC cards offer.
  • 5×500 BOGO on BMS: This is a useful offer that will be used at least once a month for sure if not more. Especially now given that Covid is nearing an end 🤞. Maybe adding INR 6000 in Magnus’s annual reward rate. DCB does give monthly 500 BMS vouchers on milestone spends but nothing such is available on Infinia.

Should you apply for Axis Magnus?

Will I apply for Axis Magnus? The answer as of now is clear No. The reason is simple, I don’t run a credit card bill of 1lakh every month. Maybe occasionally it happens (travel bookings, big insurance payments etc) but outside of that never. Further, given my spending pattern and my credit card strategy, I can extract a 6-8% reward rate on HDFC DCB. It appears low because it is my primary card and since I don’t travel much I don’t max out the 7500 reward points every month.

Should you apply? Depends on your usage pattern. If you run a cumulative 1lk bill per month on utility, insurance, rent and fuel, then you should apply. A consistent 6% reward rate on these spends is not available on any other credit cards. But again let us face it, how many of us will end up with a bill of 1lakh every month on electricity, fuel, insurance and rent? 😈

Conclusion

Axis Magnus with its revised benefits is a good card for frequent travellers (airport concierge services) who regularly runs a bill of 1lakh and above. It is not a replacement for HDFC Infinia or HDFC Diners Black yet.

Do you see Axis Magnus as a replacement for HDFC Diners Black or Infinia? Have you applied for Axis Magnus? Do share your views and experiences below. 

Photo by Martin de Arriba on Unsplash

27 Comments

  1. Amrish

    Couple of points:
    1. In your calculations, you’ve taken 1.2% for amazon/FK for Magnus. It could be 6% if done through vouchers, specially since there are no limits like in Infinia/ dcb
    2. While you’ve mentioned 70% RP utilization for Infinia/ Dcb, it doesn’t get factored in the calculations. It’s a big difference IMHO. The way I do it for myself is to consider value of RP as 70p. I think it gives a more fair comparison, maybe something to consider

    • Comment by post author

      CreditCardz

      Hey Amrish
      thanks for your comments – below are my thoughts
      1. there are limits for vouchers on Axis card too – someone had shared a screenshot on my twitter profile showing that more than 10k Amazon vouchers are not allowed (https://twitter.com/niteshladia/status/1429118789812047883).Happy to be corrected here.

      Further, Amazon vouchers can be used for most utility bill payments – so I can probably earn 10-15% on utility bill payment thru Infinia/DCB against 6% on Magnus.

      2. About the value of points, what you say is correct when you have say 50k points and have booking of 50k to be done. But in case you have 30k points and 50k booking, then you very well get value of 1 per point. Modelling these scenarios can make the model very complex and prone to error.

  2. Amrish

    Agree on both counts, but:
    1. By limit on voucher, I meant the daily and monthly limits hdfc has on SmartBuy. That’s not there with axis. Otherwise the 10k for amazon/ FK is same for both
    2. Agree it will make it complex and very subjective, but should keep in mind that RP < 1, difficult to put an exact value
    Anyway, all 3 are great cards. Just in my mind now the ranking is DCB<Magnus<Infinia. Best to keep Magnus + Infinia together if spends justify 🙂

  3. Akshay

    One should calculate based on 5 lac usage,then you will find DCB is not great anymore at all.I am still keeping this since its LTF,else would hv surrendered,no point in paying 10k for DCB now!!!

    • Comment by post author

      CreditCardz

      Hey Akshay.
      The calculator shared above is dynamic and you can change the monthly spends to around 42k to reach 5lk annual spends. Enabling you to check for yourself what level of returns you are getting on it.

  4. vaibhav89910@gmail.com

    Can’t get magnus cause of 10k fees it not for everyone obviously.. in the future like 2 to 4 year may be

  5. Shreyansh Soni

    Couple of points to add
    1. Magnus is comparatively easier to get as you just should have min 3lac credit limit on other cards on card to card basis
    2. Instead of giving value of 1rs to dcb and infinia reward points, it should be around 70ps or less as the hotel and flight prices are most of the times overpriced and you can almost anytime get 10 to 15 % discount on flights and 25% or more discount on hotel bookings

    A better option would be comparing the points redemption for amazon vouchers instead which would bring down the point value of dcb and infinia by around 30%
    This would bring at least dcb and magnus at a level and then freedom to spend anywhere for 1lac spend on magnus would give it an edge over dcb imo

    • Comment by post author

      CreditCardz

      Great inputs Shreyansh.
      My reservation against Magnus stems from the point that you need to spend 1lakh every month like a treadmill to extract value out of it.
      Unless someone is into Mfg spends or passing business expenses on personal card, this level of spend is just not possible.

      I dont run a bill of 1lk every month on all my cards put together. So for me it just doesn’t make sense.

      • Shreyansh Soni

        True
        Maybe we can term magnus as best super premium card for Non travellers (For those who travel not more than 2 3 times a year like myself 🤭)

  6. Jaya

    can i buy amazon vouchers from GIFT EDGE( https://www.gyftr.com/edgerewards) with the magnus card for 5x edge rewards

  7. Shreyansh Soni

    Hey
    I got this card around 15 days back and to my surprise the sale discounts on amazon and flipkart for axis credit cards are not getting applied on this card
    The same card discounts are getting applied on my flipkart and ace card without any issue
    I initially thought this of some technical issue but after complaining till the nodal officer i was informed today that the card discounts on merchant’s like amazon, flipkart and others won’t apply on this card as this card is excluded from those offers
    I have checked all the terms and conditions on amazon and flipkart (During the sale period) and there was only one exclusion on flipkart for flipkart axis card of 5% discount instead of 10% which is fine
    Can you please confirm whether anyone else is facing this issue or is it just some technical issue with my card?
    And if it’s true then this will be a major downside for this card!

    • Shreyansh Soni

      Update: Tried booking a flight today at makemytrip using axis’s discount code MMTWEDCREDIT
      After entering the magnus card number and clicking on continue the page shows ‘The offer is only valid on Axis Credit Cards’
      I think axis has not shared the card’s bin number with merchants either inadvertently or they just dont wanna give offers on this card

      • Comment by post author

        CreditCardz

        Hey Shreyansh i suggest that you get your card replaced. The situation you are facing seems odd.
        Would have suggested getting an addon instead, but Axis is not issuing those as of now.
        So the best thing is to place a request for card replacement and hopefully then you won’t face such issue

        • Shreyansh Soni

          I asked this issue to sid from cardexpert and he told that the problem indeed exists and they likely missed to update the visa bin numbers
          And a few other people are also facing the same issue
          Can you please check it once
          You can check it on cred as the 10x edge reward points on travel offer is ongoing there and is also not getting applied

  8. shila212

    What about 10x/20x points on Traveledge or/20x rewards on Amazon that Axis regularly runs. The reward points have no cap. With 1l spend that translates to 29% cashback in that month easily from Amazon.

  9. Anand

    I have both Infinia and Magnus. After spending 1 lac on Magnus per month should i switch to using Infinia for maximum benefits?

    • Comment by post author

      CreditCardz

      Hey Anand thats a decent plan and you can stick to it

      However, my 2 cents is tabulate your spends of the last 4-6 months and see where you would have earned the highest reward rate keeping in mind the monthly target of 1lac on Magnus. This way you can probably juice out another 1-1.5% reward rate on your cards.

      Let me know if you need any help with this. Will be happy to help.

  10. Varun

    Didn’t find any mention of 20paise per reward point as statement credit on their website. Can you share source ?

  11. Vin

    Well written article! I got a Magnus post your blog but later found out a limitation on this card so thought to let know you a ‘hidden’ T&C
    You’ll only receive maximum of 6000 edge reward points per transaction on this card, that means transaction limit of ₹1,00,000. This could be applicable to other Axis card too, but not sure.
    E.g. if you make a transaction of ₹1,50,000 you’ll be credited with 6000 reward points instead of 9,000.

    Made a transaction of 120K but received 6000 points instead of 7200. Raised to Axis customer care, which we know are most useless in the industry. Front-end support says you should get 7200, back-end team closes issue saying 6000 is the limit without citing any T&C.

  12. Sid

    Doesn’t it make sense to get it anyway since they’re giving Tata Cliq voucher/Flight ticket worth 10k as Welcome/Annual benefit? I mean net you’re paying just the GST on top of the membership charges, right?

    • Comment by post author

      CreditCardz

      Tata cliq vouchers are no longer available. Now you get only the 10k air tkt.
      Thats one way to think about it, but its just your money moving from one pocket to another. So not sure what you gain.
      However, given the continuous devaluation of DCB, the card i own. I am seriously thinking of taking this card.

  13. Vaidy

    Does Magnum still give points for rent payment? I heard it no longer does… I would at least like to know if it at least counts for the 1 lac bonus points per month

    • Comment by post author

      CreditCardz

      On magnus you get points for rent payment.
      Axis ace and flipkart no longer gives.

      • Abhishek Laddha

        Axis Ace never had points , it always gives cashback ( flat 2 % for all and 5% for bill payments )

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