ICICI Sapphiro Credit Card Review

ICICI Sapphiro Credit Card

Launched in 2012, the ICICI Sapphiro Credit Card was the third Credit Card to be launched in the ICICI Gemstone collection. With ICICI Sapphiro Credit Card, you get 2 cards linked to the same account: Sapphiro Amex and Sapphiro MasterCard with a combined limit and hence, you get to enjoy the benefits of both MasterCard and Amex. Marketed as a Premium Card with high annual fees, the reward points which we get on this card are not that great, but there are other unique benefits which are not offered with most of the Credit Cards out there.

Fees

Joining Fee

Rs 6,500 + GST (18%)
You get welcome vouchers from various merchants worth Rs 9,000+ within 45 days of payment of the joining fee.

Annual Fee

Rs 3,500 + GST (18%)

Fee waiver: The annual fee is waived off on spending more than Rs 6L in the previous year.

Eligibility for ICICI Sapphiro Credit Card

No specific criteria is mentioned for the Card on the ICICI website.

Benefits of ICICI Sapphiro Credit Card

Welcome benefit

On the payment of joining fees, you get the following vouchers:

  • Tata Cliq: Rs 3000
  • 4 * Rs 1000 EaseMyTrip Vouchers
  • 4 * Rs 250 Uber vouchers
  • Croma Voucher: Rs 1000
  • 1 year complementary Zomato pro subscription
  • For the first 2 months, spend Rs 20k in a month and get Rs 750 cashback (spends need to be done using the Amex version).

Reward points

You get payback points, having a value of Rs 0.25 per point. The points can be credited to the credit card account.

Spend CategoryICICI Bank Sapphiro Mastercard
Credit Card (every Rs 100)
ICICI Bank Sapphiro
Amex Credit Card (every Rs 100)
Domestic spends (except fuel)23
International spends46
Note: 1 payback point on every Rs. 100 spent on fuel, utilities and insurance categories.

Milestone Rewards

  • On reaching annual spends of Rs 4L, you get 4,000 payback points worth Rs 1,000.
  • On every incremental 1L spend, you get 2,000 payback points worth Rs 500.

The maximum milestone payback points we can earn per year has an upper limit of 20k.

Airport Lounge Access

Domestic
4 free Domestic Airport Lounge access (2 each for MasterCard and Amex variants) per quarter to selected Airport lounges in India. To avail the complementary airport lounge access, you need to spend a minimum of Rs 5,000 in the previous quarter (spends counted on each card variant separately).

International
2 complementary international airport lounge access per year to more than 450 airports in the world through the Dreamfolks membership you get with this Credit Card for free.

Dreamfolks DragonPass ICICI Sapphiro Credit Card
Dreamfolks membership card which I got with my ICICI Sapphiro Credit card.

Airport Spa Access

2 complementary spa access at selected airports in India every year through the Dreamfolks membership.

Monthly benefits

Buy 1 ticket from BookMyShow and get Rs 500 off on the second ticket, twice every month.

Drawbacks

  • The annual fee of Rs 3,500 is too high when we see the return rate we get on this card.
  • The Payback rewards system is not so good in terms of transparency of the points earned per transaction, the redemption options and the redemption charges.

Should you get it?

If you are looking just for the monetary rewards, then ICICI Sapphiro Credit Card is not for you. On spending Rs 6L on the Amex variant, you get the annual fee waiver and earn 26,000 payback points (18,000 regular points and 8,000 points as the milestone rewards) equal to Rs 6500, which translates to ~1.08% returns. Too less for a “premium card”, huh!! However, if you look into the other benefits, then you can get decent value back from this card. Very few credit cards in India provide complementary international airport lounge access (2 annually) and to top that, complementary spa access at airports (again, 2 annually) is another awesome benefit which we get with this card. But in any case, this does not justify the high fees you pay for this card IMO.

Personally speaking, I would not apply for this card if I have to pay the annual fees for this as the spend required for the annual fee waiver on this card is a little high and I can easily earn much more rewards using my Diners Club Black, rather than ICICI Sapphiro Credit Card. I was able to negotiate with ICICI Bank for a lifetime free ICICI Sapphiro Credit Card and hence I applied for this card without thinking twice. I received the MasterCard-Amex dual cards in approx. 10 days after applying and got the Dreamfolks membership card a week post that. I have used the Airport Lounge access twice using my ICICI Sapphiro Credit Card while travelling to Bangalore 2 weeks back an have availed the BookMyShow BOGO offer for a live event. However, I’m yet to avail the Airport Spa access using this card since the O2 spa in Bangalore Airport has shut down due to COVID-19 Pandemic.

Let me know your thoughts or queries on the ICICI Sapphiro Credit Card in the comments below. Want any specific Credit Card reviews? Let me know in the comments below or using the Contact Me section of this website.

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