HDFC Bank has re-launched the Millennia credit card recently with a revised reward structure. The changes will be applicable for Millennia credit cards issued post 1st October 2021. For someone holding an older Millennia credit card, the old reward structure will continue until 31st October; post which the updated reward structure will be applicable.
However, the important question is whether the new reward structure better? The answer is, it depends on your monthly spending. Read on to find out.
HDFC Millennia Credit Card
What has changed in HDFC Millennia Card?
The reward structure of the HDFC Millennia credit card is now simplified and straightforward. For the old HDFC Millennia, the reward structure was convoluted; where only the transactions over 2000 would get accelerated reward points. Further, the cashback limit of 750 per month per category was applicable.
Now, there is no minimum transaction limit, which means that even a 100 spend is eligible for the accelerated reward rate. Further, the cashback limit is now at 1000 per month per category. These two changes make life easier for the cardholder.
However, with HDFC Bank being HDFC Bank, it has smartly reduced the categories for accelerated rewards. Earlier, all online spends use to get 2.5% cashback; whereas spends on Amazon, Flipkart, flight and hotel booking thru Payzapp and SmartBuy getting 5%. While all other spends use to get 1%.
Now, only spends on selected merchants (Amazon, BookMyShow, Cult.fit, Flipkart, Myntra, Sony LIV, Swiggy, Tata CLiQ, Uber and Zomato) will get a 5% reward rate. All other spends whether offline or online will get only 1% cashback. This effectively reduces the savings capacity of this card.
Further, to entice cardholders to spend more on Millennia credit cards, HDFC bank has introduced a quarterly milestone benefit. Under this, if you spend more than 100,000 in a calendar quarter you get a 1000 gift voucher (from one of the following –Big Basket, BookMyShow, Pizza Hut, PVR or Uber). While this feature did exist earlier too, it was only for the first year of the card issuance. This is now applicable for every quarter.
Another good thing that HDFC Bank has done is extended reward points validity. Earlier the reward points were valid only for a year. Now they are valid for 2 years. This is genuinely a good move as I was always of the opinion that reward points validity of 1 year is way too less and most cardholders won’t be able to redeem their points within a year of accumulation.
Further, for the new Millennia credit card, redemption now start from 500 points, which was earlier 2500 for a statement credit. This is another good change on the card.
HDFC Millennia Card – What has not changed?
Well to put it simply, rest everything else remains unchanged. J
An annual fee of 1000 remains, which is waived off on annual spending of 100,000 per year. Spending 100,000 per annum on a credit card should not be difficult, which, in a way, makes this card lifetime free.
Another good thing that has not changed is the lounge access. Millennia credit card still gives 8 domestic lounge access for free with a cap of a max of 2 per quarter.
HDFC Millennia Benefits Calculator
Below is a dynamic calculator that compares the reward rate of the old Millennia credit card and the new Millennia credit card. For spends under 33k per month, the reward rate of the old Millennia credit card was better; however, for spends above that, the new Millennia credit card gives a higher reward rate. This is obviously, what HDFC Bank wants more spending on their cards.
Overall, the changes on the Millennia credit card makes it more user-friendly thanks to the simplified earn rate and redemption process. However, to maximise the benefits one needs to spend over 4L on this card to earn a reward rate of 3.3%. At those spending levels, I would rather split my spending between Amex MRC and Axis Ace or ICICI Amazon Pay combo to get the max benefits.