Understanding credit cards exclusively for women!

By | March 17, 2014

Notorious as being impulsive shoppers and spendthrifts, the fact that women are able to manage homes with limited resources and multi tasking with the available finances is often ignored. Recent surveys have shown that women are less likely to default on their debts compared to males and are generally responsible spenders if given a free hand. With only 15% of working women in urban India having an independent credit card, banks and financial institutions are focusing their energy on women centric card segment.  Let us take a look at various aspects of such women centric card cards and whether it makes sense for women customers to opt for the same.

Analysing Women Credit Card Holders:

Independent women credit card holders lag behind in terms of numbers compared to men as the section remains largely under penetrated. A large number of women under the non working segment often end up using add on cards of their spouse rather than their own unique credit cards. The numbers are quite low in non metropolitan cities where penetration of women centric cards offers a great untapped opportunity for banks. Working women on the other hand find it easier to apply for a credit card due to their strong repayment track record or income proof. The lack of any substantial income proof for non working women including housewives makes it difficult for banks to offer credit cards.

Changing Face of Credit Card Segmentation:

The credit card market in India has evolved over the years and turning more towards a segmentation process rather than offering one size fits all cards for each customer.  From co branded credit cards with retail store chains to women centric credit cards, the credit card market is offering unique solutions customized for various customers. Since women make up more than 20% of the country’s workforce, it is only natural that credit card companies are targeting women centric credit cards offering women oriented advantages for card users. A lot of work still remains to be done as credit card companies are still unwilling to offer cards to non working women due to lack of clarity over their repayment track record.

Unique Features of Women Centric Cards:

Women centric credit cards are segmented to offer unique features to women card holders. These include reward points or active discounts on various women centric services like beauty parlors, free women’s health check-up package at leading hospitals, insurance for personal accident or death from women-related disease to rewards in beauty and health products. Cash back facility, amount of credit offered and interest rates on such women centric cards is almost similar compared to other segmented cards but the customization of reward points and services make it more lucrative for women customers to use actively.

Comparison of Various Women Centric Credit Cards:

Bank Card Name Eligibility Criteria Features Bonus /Benefits Fees
Bank of Baroda Bobcard Exclusive Woman Card Annual income of Rs. 2, 00,000 or more. Revolving credit: Rs. 40,000, Cash withdrawal: Cash limit will be 20% of the sanctioned credit limit. (subject to   repayment of earlier cash withdrawal amount) Every Rs.100/- spent 1.5 bonus point will be credited (Other than Cash Withdrawal and Petrol Transactions) Membership / Joining Fees Rs.350/- Renewal Fee for principle card Rs.750/-*            Add-on :free up to 3 add-ons
HDFC HDFC Solitaire Credit Card Both Salaried and Self employed Women #   50% more Reward Points on dining and grocery spends.# 3 Reward Points on Rs. 150 spent.#  Fuel Surcharge Waiver for transactions between Rs. 400 – Rs. 5,000 (ST applicable). #Enjoy shopping with Shoppers Stop vouchers of total worth Rs. 2,000 every year.# Earn 2,880 Reward Points or more in a year on dining and grocery shopping itself.#Save Rs. 1,500 in a year on your fuel transactions.Zero Lost Card liability post reporting card loss to bank. #Annual Fee             Rs. 999#Add On Card Fee             #Free for lifetime#Cash Advance Limit   40% of credit limit#Cash Advance Transaction Fee      2.5% on amount withdrawn or Rs 300/- whichever is higher
Standard Chartered Bank Standard Chartered Bank Diva Visa Both Salaried and Self employed Women #Les Concierges services from StanChart Diva allows payment of bills, movie ticket booking, organising parties, etc#free women’s health check-up package at leading hospitals in the country#Insurance for personal accident, death from women-related disease, children’s education, accident of education Cash Advance: 30% of the credit limit for the first 6 months, and based on your spending pattern, 60% for 7-12 months and 100% after 12 months # Interest Rate (% p.m.):   2.95# Effective Interest Rate Per Annum (in %): 41.75# Maximum Credit: 50 days# Minimum Payment Due: 5 % of the total outstanding amount

# Late Payment Charges: 15% of minimum amount due subject to a minimum of Rs 75 and a maximum of Rs 500

Citibank Citibank Woman’s Card #Enjoy fabulous discounts in beauty and health products, entertainment and shopping.# Contribute to the Society for Promotion of Area Resource Centers (SPARC) and Friends of Women World Banking (FWWB).#Share the power of your Citibank Woman’s Card with your family through an Add-on Card. Earn valuable Citibank Rewards Points every time you spend on your Card and exchange them for a vast array of fabulous gifts. You can earn 1 Rewards Point for every Rs. 150/- spent on your Card. #Joining Fee: Free for Life.#Annual Fee: Free for Life.#Add On Card Fee: Free for Life. You can also get three Additional Cards, Free for Life, for your family members over the age of 18.You can share the power of your Citibank Woman’s Card with your family. Your Citibank Woman’s Card membership entitles you to 3 Additional Cards, which is Free for Life, for members of your family over 18 years of age.


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