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Benefits of the Visa Black Card

Christina Thomas

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If you spend (easily) more than $50,000 per year, then the Visa Black Card just might be a card for you. The $495 annual fee has caused some consternation amongst a few people who have been solicited with an application by mail; the fact is, this is the best reason for those who concern themselves with that price to avoid the Black Card, as it clearly falls out of their income bracket.

The ferocious marketing campaign of Visa may have riled a few feathers of anticipation, but unless you are the type who is capable of spending hundreds of dollars on a routine shopping trip for just yourself, then the annual fee will inspire complaints. Further, with the 1% cash back rewards program, this fee becomes nonexistent for spenders who charge at least $50,000 per year on their Black Card.

All that’s left, then, are the many gifts that you will receive in the mail as a part of their exclusive program.

Most agree that the Visa Black Card is modeled on American Express’ Centurion Card for the look; the American Express Platinum Card, for everything else. They share a similar annual fee, and the Visa Black Card will additionally provide the cardholder with the equivalent of a 24-hour assistant in the form of their concierge service, which can assist with travel, shopping, restaurant reservation and pretty much anything else you can think of but don’t want to bother with doing yourself (what greater evidence that such a credit card is meant for a higher income-bracket!).

The Visa Black Card ’s graphite mold is sturdy and often described as beautiful and commanding. Along with the 1% cash-back mentioned earlier, you are provided with access to over 600 airport VIP lounges all over the world which, for the frequent flyer, can be a godsend. A few other acknowledged gifts from their rewards program are $400 designer hand-bags, tickets to anywhere in the world (we’re assuming places like North Korea and Sudan aren’t considered by the people at Visa Black at the present time), dinners at various Steakhouses, etc. While these are certainly great gifts and can easily conspire to make up for the annual fee, we suspect that the true Black Card wielders wouldn’t regard them with as wild-eyed a grin as we would.

The Visa Black Card isn't quite as robust as the other high-end black cards offered by American Express and another company, but it is definitely considered an upper middle class type of credit card. The almost $500 annual fee warrants careful consideration; it might seem exorbitant, but the benefits more than make up for it - besides, $500 is a drop in the bucket. That amounts to just $42 per month; remember, the card is intended for people who bring home perhaps $8000 and above monthly.

Visa and Barclays have scaled back the program since its inception in 2009 - they still send out packets, but they aren't as ubiquitous as they once were. You may even be able to apply on their website, which has altered both its appearance and name slightly. To better make credit cards work for you, check out this website on using them to make money, instead of racking up debt.


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