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Visa Black Card Review

This article was written by in Credit. 67 comments.


Editor’s Note: Thank you for your interest, this offer expired and is no longer available.

Related: Comparing the Visa Black Card With American Express Platinum and Centurion Cards.

Visa is introducing a new credit card catered to consumers who spend $50,000 or more a year. The Visa Black Card looks similar to the American Express Centurion Card, which was created about a decade ago after that company wanted to capitalize on rumors of a super-exclusive black card. The Visa approach is more on par with the American Express Platinum Card, however.

The first thing you notice, beyond the carbon graphite blackness, is the $495 annual fee. This is well below the $2,500 fee for the Centurion Card, but close to the AmEx Platinum’s $450. If you qualify for the Visa Black Card, this fee will pay for a 24-hour, 7-day concierge service to help with restaurant recommendations and reservations, golf reservations, travel assistance, and specialty research and shopping. In other words, you can call the concierge and accomplish just about anything.

Here’s an example of the card’s concierge service mentioned on AdSavvy:

[A professional NFL football player] was on vacation with his family when a massive storm essentially shutdown the resort and island they were on, no commercial flights at all. He called his concierge and has a charter flight arranged, which allowed him to avoid the mayhem resulting from the storm crushing [the] island. Sure, he paid handsomely for the charter, but he watched the aftermath of the storm on his television at home instead of living through it.

Throughout the year, you will receive “luxury gifts” from Visa for no additional cost.

According to the card’s application, only 1% of U.S. residents will qualify. I’ve seen reports, however, that people who are not necessarily big spenders are applying for and qualifying for the card. Some who are accepted have average credit scores and low income. This is not what you would expect from a card that claims to be super-exclusive, but it’s bound to make certain people feel good about themselves.

The offers 1% cash back or points redeemable for travel on all purchases. While you’re traveling, you can access airport VIP lounges affiliated with Priority Pass. Right now, Visa is also offering a 0% balance transfer offer, which includes a 3% fee. This fee is restricted with a minimum of $5, and while the current offers is in place, a maximum of $50.

For big spenders, the $495 annual fee is easily paid for by cash back and concierge services. As someone who has enough trouble making my Netflix subscription worthwhile, this card probably isn’t for me.

Updated January 19, 2014 and originally published January 9, 2009. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.

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About the author

Luke Landes, also known as Flexo, is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about him and follow Luke Landes on Twitter. View all articles by .

{ 67 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Susan

I think I’ll take the $495 and keep it in my pocket. :)

If I really “need” a black credit card to feel good about myself, I’ll just color in my gold card with a sharpie. ;)

Bad timing on their part – excessive consumerism is on the way out (so I hear) – it’s been “out” in my house for a long time.

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avatar Henry

The Amex fees are well worth the money. I’ve had the centurion card for over 3 years and the concierge and travel service benefits are amazing. My fiance and I decided to take a last minute trip to Napa and called Amex one night. Within 15 minutes we had flights, limo, hotel and reservations at top notch restaurants (sorry to say we never made it because of too much “tasting”). They’ve helped me with random concierge requests, tickets and even a lost passport in Prague and I have found the card to be well worth the money.

Unfortunately I have also applied and received the Visa Black Card. This thing is a joke. I have no idea why I did it and regret the day I ever came across the card. First off the card came with a complete joke of a limit. Throw in the $500 annual fee and you just have to scratch your head. I just finished furnishing a new house and a few people didn’t take Amex. I used the Visa card and accidentally busted through the joke of a limit (is it really a limit then). Visa was nice enough to post that to my credit report which immediately dropped it 46 points. I called and they gave me the biggest BS excuse as to why this happened. Turns out I own a credit card processing company and know a thing or two about this and some dope CS rep just flat out lied about trashing my credit.

Bottom line… Don’t even consider the wannabe Visa Black Card. It’s a joke in every way. Their concierge service is worthless, their limits are a joke, and the card even feels flimsy like bad toilet paper. I’m not the type of guy that likes to turn heads with a credit card but I’ll never have that problem with the Visa card. It doesn’t get any second glances and anyone in the know understands that it’s a worthless card that they’ll give to anyone.

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avatar Mrs. Accountability

I’m applying for this one right away, NOT! LOL! I have never paid a yearly fee on any credit card (although for some reason our line of credit through the bank has recently charged us $25 for a yearly fee – note to self, call bank to have that reversed today). I guess if I was a millionaire I could go for something like this, but for the time being, I can manage making my own arrangements for flight off a resort on an island. No wait, I wouldn’t be there either. I guess I don’t need this card after all. And that’s a good one, Susan, I’ll color mine in with a sharpie, too. LOL.

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avatar Erick

Mrs. Accountability:

Thank you!!!! IF more people were like you and spent what they made we would all be happy! again Thank YOU!

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avatar Rassah

I have a CapitalOne Platinum card that has no annual fees, and pays 2% cash back. It’s the one that lets you put your own picture on it once a month. I think I’ll just order my next one to be completely black :D

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avatar Jonathan

How is 1% cash back “exclusive rewards”? :)

Anyone else thinking of starting a business that just paints regular credit cards black for a $50 fee?

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avatar thomas

Do they have a credit card for people who save 50k a year?

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avatar Bill M

Lets Start a Paint the Credit Card Black Club! I’ll keep my cash thank you, next…

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avatar 440rt

We’ve had our black card for several months now and my wife received a Chanel hand bag as an “Exclusive Reward”. The bag is probably only worth $300, but that pays for most of the yearly fee.

The yearly fee is also waived if you charge more then $50k a year. That’s pretty easy to do if you use the card for everything and pay it off at the end of the month. We pay utilities, phones, etc. with our card.

We used the concierge service to book playoff football tickets that were sold out, but other then that haven’t really tried it out much.

A friend of mine that charges way more then me also received 2 First Class tickets anywhere he wanted to go. Definitely not things you have to have, but well worth the $495 and well beyond a typical “cash back” reward.

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avatar Chilly

I call the Black VISA number to inquire about waiving of the $495 annual fee if the card holder spends $50K by the end of the one-year term. The representative told me that this was not true. Is the person I spoke with ill informed or did you receive information from them directly noting the waived fee? If yes, could you share the source? Thanks!

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avatar Sean

1% of $50,000 is $500. Ergo, if you spend $50,000 per year you’ll get the $495 annual fee (plus a whopping $5) back. Is it worth it ? Not to me, but my expenditures don’t come close to $50,000 per year.

X

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avatar ChrisW

Sounds like a shill for the company trying to put some lipstick on this pig.

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avatar s3rndpt

A Chanel handbag? Worth $300? Oh please. If there was anything that was a sign of this review not being real, that was it.

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avatar Josie

A $300 handbag is no more to me than Oprah’s $38,000 one… And no more useful than any under $100.

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avatar Mike

I have my Black Card for a few months now and all I have received is a $50 pen as a gift. I am sure my wife would have loved a Chanel bag or plan tickets but a pen? The concierge service is great as they were able to locate 50 yard line seats to the Super Bowl for me.

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avatar Taleeya Green

Can you please tell me what the qualifying factors are in order to apply for the card.

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avatar Taleeya Green

How can I get a black card?

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avatar Simon Lee

Dont do it, it’s a total scam worst customer service ever they really don’t care at all.

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avatar Widow

I am not only curious about what criteria are used to determine who will be the 1%, but even more so, how perspective members are found, for promotion by mail. I have a high credit rating and several credit and charge cards,in good standing,(with much better deals than this one), and I was not solicited for this Black Card. However, my late husband received a large, black envelope, with an application to apply. He’s been dead for 7 years and is listed as deceased with all matters of credit and banking. I thought it was a funny coincidence, for a deceased person to receive an ad for a BLACK card, in this funereal design, and when I saw that it’s only for 1%, I wondered if one of the criteria is being deceased? lol But seriously, it shows poor research technique, in marketing.

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avatar TW

I have the Platinum American Express card. I’ve had it for years and swear by it. I got stuck in an airport during a bad snow storm. I called them up and while others were sleeping on the floor, AE got us a room in a hotel and even picked us up. The airport was closed for 3 days.

My mom is 94. Her only income is SS. She lives with me and I take care of her. You guessed it…she got a Black Visa invite. I didn’t.

Think I’d switch? Hah!

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avatar Mr. Better than you

You are all mad because you are all poor. You all are complaining about a $500 fee. I laugh at you. Im guessing that most of you who have posted have horrible jobs making less than $10 an hour. Mabe all of you go to college and get better jobs. Again just to let you know, im laughing at all of you.

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avatar JDWhiskey24

I hope ‘Mr. Better than you’ goes to school soon. Proper grammar would be a start. ‘im’ should be “I’m” and “mabe” should be ‘maybe’. I’m sure you’re the epitomy of Asher Roth’s “I love college”, but you should take your own advice: “mabe all of you go to college and get better jobs” (or go back if you’ve already been). I didn’t go to college and I don’t throw my ‘no college degree’ in peoples faces. I have a black Amex, drive a nice car, own my house, have several Mont Blanc pens (to use when I sign checks to pay for my cars…in full). Don’t be so quick to judge; we’re just talking about a f+!?#@*g credit card here.

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avatar Mark

Paying cash for expensive cars is just foolish. Smart people lease.

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avatar Bob

No, dumb people lease cars. Leasing a car is almost always a very bad financial decision. Ask anyone with a financial background or a CPA to explain it to you.

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avatar JB

And people with a financial background will tell you that buying a brand new car is the worst possible investment out there. Buying used is the best plan of action, leasing is the second.

avatar damyelle

D**m that was dumb to say!!

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avatar Paige

Not when the lease only allows 10K or 12K miles per year. I drive about 20K miles per year; buying is MUCH cheaper for me and many other people who don’t live near public transportation.

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avatar GDWhiskey24

Um, you may want to learn how to spell “epitome” before you attempt to give someone grammar lessons.

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avatar Mike

Really? Put the bottle of Jack down and take a chill. This is on the internet in forum, and please don’t treat my post as a dissertation. Most people write what meets the setting (would you spell out every word in a text?) If your expected to read a proper sentence structure and grammar on every comment… ugh pick the bottle back up.

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avatar Bobby Davis

Man!,,, That was so mean? Who would say this to a group of strangers they have never met? You may have money, but you DON’T have any manners!!! A very good grammar class would not hurt either !!

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avatar Mathew

I think the claim that this card is for uber-rich high net worth individuals is nonsense. I received an offer for this card and I am nowhere near the so-called 1% of US population that is supposed to be the customer for this card.Infact I have not used a credit card in years and carry no debt other than mortgage. Barclay’s must be really desperate to offer me this card.
.
Although the brochure is impressive in it’s design and writing and for a second I thought of getting this card until I saw the $495 annual fee,In no time I ripped the brochure and application form into peices

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avatar ChrisW

This card is a joke!

I got an “exclusive” invitation to apply for one, but they SPELLED MY NAME WRONG!

Wonder which 1% spam list they got my name from.

Oh, and the TERMS! LOL

13% interest, or prime plus 9.99. Same as Bank of America or Bob’s Fly-by-night Bank.

Worse than any other card I carry, including American Express.

Abnd what line of credit do you get? At least $250, far less than the $500 they charge you for a year.

A guarantee you will be over limit from day one?

Looks like.

Report this fraud to your state attorney general NOW!

I BURNED the offer and laughed the entire time!

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avatar Chicagoguy

I got one in the mail yesterday and read how it was only marketed to the top 1% of earners in US. I’m probably in the top 3% but definitely not in the top1% based on my research done during tax times, so strike 1. Strike 2 was how all the extras I am supposed to get meant crap to me. Concierge service? Are you f’ing kidding me? Not for me. Strike 3 was the $495 annual service. I actually laughed out loud when I saw that and took vicious pleasure in tearing that beautiful envelope and marketing materials up. I’m not in the market for this type of gimmick even if I was in the top 1% though being a geek at heart, I did like the fact that this one came in carbon fiber ;)

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avatar Chriseana Finley

You have the audacity to ask for $495 a year. That is absolutely crazy, especially the way the economy is these days. People do not have that kind of money to spend a year on a visa card that was suppose to be designed to help. This card is out rages… What were you thinking and what was I thinking…?

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avatar RR

I received the offer, IMO this is strictly for snob appeal. I have a no fee Fidelity VISA card that I charge almost every purchase we make and I get 1.75% back that I put into my investment account. This works out to about $1k/yr in my case. Better than paying the $495 up front for services I don’t really need. If I traveled more something like this may be worthwhile, but everyone needs to remember, exclusivity is an expensive indulgence and there are many that want to make your money their money by offering exclusiveness. Caveat Emptor.

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avatar W.C. Varones

Complete scam for idiots.

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avatar Joske Van Kloten Vermeulen, Schoten

“Mr. Better than you” is pulling your leg. Relax.

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avatar Brent

I got this card in the mail today. I laughed for a good few minutes. It would take me 5 years to spend $50,000…

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avatar Brent

I got this card in the mail today. I laughed for a good few minutes. It would take me 5 years to spend $50,000…

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avatar bobby

it’s called the “flexperk visa” at us bank. The same and more no fee

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avatar Agassi

This card is a piece of crap. They are out there looking to rip people off. $495 ANNUAL FEE.. UNBELIEVABLE !! They are better deals out there than this crap.

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avatar Christopher

I am a Visa Black card holder. I find the comments here quite interesting. Specifically, the comments where one person claims that a deceased person recieved and offer and another that complains about the annual fee. ALL credit card companies have a history of soliciting persons that are deceased. That is simply an error on the part of the issuer. In terms of the annual fee, in turn you get unlimited usage of an assistant to help with planning travel, shopping and so forth. $495 a year for that service is more than worth the cost. An employed personal assistant would cost at lease $35k plus a year. No, I do not work for visa, but I am a card holder. When applying, you will be contacted to verify income, employment and so forth. I do not believe for one instant that a person with low income and marginal credit will ever get this card. You must have both a high income coupled with excellent credit. I suppose it is possible that a person with above average income could get the car, but that individual will have to have amazing credit. In such a case that person would more than likely have a lower limit than the rest of the card holders. However, the more I htink about that the more unlikely it seems that such a person would get this card. The card does offer valuable perks, an assistant, prestige, good insurance protection from purchases, world wide acceptance…..it is an excellent card. The packaging, upon arrival , was a very nice presentation. I recieved two personal follow calls regarding my card within one week of its arrival. Simly put, if you are a person that complains about a $495 annual fee then this card is not for you. You cannot affford this type of card. It is for a more affluent class that you do not fall into. It serves a class of people that spend $500 or more on dinners, travel often and so forth. In summation, if you do not meet the criteria, spend less time online and more time learning how to incrase your income and credit score to qualify. Life is not fair!

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avatar Widow

I’m the one who’s deceased husband got the solicitation. This shows me that Black Visa has inferior solicitation mailing list technology and is not seeking out people who would be interested in this card. Sure my dead husband receives mail like this, but I would think that if this were something really exclusive, the solicitation would be able to find people who would be interested. My husband’s death was reported to all matters of banking and credit. I just thought that it was ironic that dead people receive special Black invitations.

But I already have a credit card with no annual fee and it includes all the concierge services and other benefits you mention, for free. I also get reward points, with much less limitation than the Black Visa. I just use this card to pay for everyday expenses and then pay it off. Then my credit rating goes up and when it’s time to pay for special things, like vacations, I cash in the points and get a lot for free.

I personally don’t find it anything to brag about to be paying a lot for nothing, I’m more proud of getting a lot or very little, but if I did have much more money than I needed, and I did want to show off, I would make large philanthropic donations to show off to the world at large and I would get a big yacht and villa on the French Riviera, to show off to the other billionaires and still have something I could really enjoy myself.

This card seems to be for people who are insecure and are falling for something that’s almost a hoax.

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avatar Mike

Sounds about right, they call you and verify all your information.. As mentioned there is history of many CC company’s soliciting to just about everyone. That doesn’t mean just everyone is getting it. Good luck to your baby, dog, and no disrespect dead ones, on answering the questions and verifying information. I think this card was designed for people like me that are in the Medium to Upper Class. If it was designed for the supper rich, the fee would be closer to $3-4K similar to the AMEX Centurion

“In summation, if you do not meet the criteria, spend less time online and more time learning how to increase* your income and credit score to qualify. Life is not fair!” Love It

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avatar ELIAS KFOURY

Happy New Year ,
Wish 2011 will bring you a healthier and wealthier lifestyle
I’d like to be one of the VISA BLACK CARD cardholdres

Thanks

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avatar Athena Rolando

All I can say is, I met 3 people within 6 years that had black Amex (1997-2003) and they were all used to purchase cheap food at big city restaurants. Los Angeles, Miami Beach and New York City. I see everyone sort of knit-picking at the in and outs of the card. Bottom line, it’s easy to blo $495 on something, just make sure you are happy with what you receive, there are many options…VISA was just at the end of it….MASTERCARD….any thoughts :)…. Hey if someone wants to let me use their Black Card, I think I could show you how to have fun and get a lot of merchandise for $50,000….BIG LOL :)

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avatar erik

i think that black card is made for people that really make very good money and use it allot like a american express, i have one my self and i get points and after a year or two i have a free air plane ticket for me and my wife. and my 1 percent cash back pays my annual fee. so it is a very good card

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avatar Mike

Sounds about similar to me, it is what it is. Nothing more (especially) nothing less. The ones that feel like they are getting screwed or its a bad card are the ones that get it and expect the $500 card to be similar to a $3000 card. Like I said it is what its.

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avatar Simon Lee

This is the first review I have ever written about any service, the Visa Black Card is that bad that I really feel the need to warn others. Honestly its a HUGE scam, they charge you money and you get nothing at all for it, nothing. The worst thing is the they have the most terrible customer service they really don’t care. I think the sole purpose is to get your $450 and then after that they don’t care. STAY AWAY STAY AWAY.

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avatar Average Joe

I got the invite today, and all I can say is…they must be desperate for cardholders. Although I am (bordering on obsessive) careful with my credit and have an excellent credit score, I would never be considered “wealthy”! I am just an average schmoe who works in state government with a second job just to keep that credit score up there. I’m 40 years old, have only been on a plane twice in my life and, even if I was swimming in wealth, would never ever pay a “concierge” to take care of something I can take care of myself. I couldn’t shred this “invitation” fast enough!

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avatar WTH

Haven’t the American tax payer bailed out the banks enough and now they ask for annual fees and outrageous interest rates to cover their mismanagement of money. Shouldn’t they pay us BACK? Isn’t it time the consumer start setting the examples and stop fall into their financial traps???? Just to carry a BLACK CARD, all my other visa cards offer the same service at no extra charge.

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avatar Simon Lee

I don’t know what happened to me I am usually a pretty smart guy, but with this I turned into a total moron, why did I get this card? I totally agree with what you say it’s ridiculous that they can screw you like this. You pay the money and they treat you terribly. They made a mistake and refused to refund fees, when I threatened to close the card they said “no problem I can close it right away”. They don’t care about you been loyal or staying with them as you already paid the $450 fee and thats all that they wanted. STAY AWAY from this card, terrible service.

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avatar MGL

I don’t know what offer some of you people are reading, but mine specifically states, ”
Limited Membership – Membership in Black Card is limited per credit card product to 1% of the US population based on the 2000 Census.” The offer I received makes absolutely no mention of a need to be wealthy or specifically marketed to the wealthy. Mine is a “pre-approved” offer. I do have a credit score between 820 & 830 (on the 850 scale), but my income is only in the middle to upper middle class range.

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avatar MGL

Also, I’m not interested in this card. I get free “concierge service” on a couple of no annual fee cards I have. I also get more than 1% cash back on the card I use most often (average about 1.5%).

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avatar Henry

The 1% stat is similar to the Amex platinum. They have about the same standards when soliciting card members. If you read online you’ll see that Visa isn’t as picky as they let on. Offers have gone to peoples dogs and long deceased individuals. Clever marketing, but in fact it’s not that exclusive.

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avatar Eric

Thanks for pointing that out: “1% of the US population.” Many people seem to think the card is offered to the top1% of income earners, which is a wholly different group altogether.

This card is offered to 2,814,219.06 people. I write: this card is offered to two million, eight-hundred fourteen-thousand, two-hundred nineteen and six-one-hundredths people.

In other words, this card is offered to nearly three-million residents of the US. Hardly exclusive.

For all the comments in here from people claiming to have this card, and who act like they are big spenders and wealthier than everyone else, who think they need a concierge service which is basically a 24 hour information line (and what kind of fool thinks a credit card ‘concierge’ desk that serves hundreds of thousands of customers is equivalent to a $35K/year personal assistant, as written in a comment above?!?), you are NOT in the top 1%, or probably even the top 5% or even 10% of earners. You are just another Joe Schmoe who has good credit and can be counted upon to pay your bill, like the nearly other 3 million people offered this card.

So who gets offered this card? You can immediately throw out 24% of the population that is under 18. Throw out almost the entire population in their 20s who have not established a lengthy credit history. Throw out people without a history of a constant, steady income. Throw out the people with less than excellent credit. Keep going and pretty soon you end up with a card offered to a lot of people, solely because they have a job and good credit.

So, you people who think you are among the top earners who have this card and think it makes you elite, go buy yourselves a bottle of Macallan 1946 so you don’t choke on my words.

And go sit in the corner while I light my Cubans with $100 bills. And after I do that, I might even smoke a cigar.

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avatar Mike

I would first like to say that I respect everyone’s opinion and feel they are free to say as they please. Please accept my comment with the same mindset. I’m an individual who works very hard for every dollar I earn, no hand outs. I’m not making the money where I would go out and spend 2-3k on a Credit card fee. Of-course if you’re Henry you can afford that and the Visa Black would be a joke. However for me not the case. Im the type of person who pays my bills on time and attempt to build credit in the process. So I may use a Credit Card then pay at the end of the month. With that all being said, If I want to pay a decent fee to treat myself so be it. I think many individuals are acting a little harsh on a the card. For a couple apparent reasons, your either to good for it and have the real deal AMEX Black, cant qualify for it, or just simply don’t care for what it offers. Once again this doesn’t apply to me I think I like having the ability to build my credit, through a single card that, continuously sends a variety of free gifts that range from Pens, Purses, or Tickets, and having the ability to have 24/7 hour concierge service. I never had a problem with it and it does everything it says it would, some people obviously expected more. All in all if its for you go for and don’t let the nay-Sayers scare you away. If not so be it, but don’t make it more, or less then what it is.
.Thanks for the time, God Bless

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avatar Falcon Pilot

I use this card for work. I travel 15-20 days a month. When I got the card they waived the fee immediately, and I hadn’t even used it yet. I’ve been very happy with customer service so far. 25,000 points gets you a $500 plane ticket. Most other cards would take 50,000 points for that ticket. I think the perks will be good.

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avatar Retired USAF Col

Received a solicitation in the mail and was stunned by the fee and the hype. I have a Platinum VISA through USAA. What more could I want than the excellent service USAA always provides. I suppose this caters to people who think they can make a statement by using this card. How shallow! Yet another credit card solicitation I tore up and threw in the trash.

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avatar AndyTheGameInventor

I think what alot of people are missing is the entry to the airline clubs as a major perk of the card. If you don’t fly very often, this means little to you. If you fly for a living (I don’t) and you fly every week or so, this card would be a bargain, as for $495 you would be able to use airport lounges from multiple airlines, which each charge about $400 a year for membership. I’ve only visited airline lounges a handful of times but they really make the airport stay pleasant, especially when your layover is lengthy.

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avatar nicole d

I purchased this visa black card mainly for the VIP airport lounges. They were supposed to be using Priority Pass as a provider. Well, they changed to Lounge Club as of December 2011 and now the airport lounge choices have diminished significantly. There are only a total of 16 US airport lounges to choose from! Of course, Newark is my airport of choice and it is NOT on the list. I am not happy and they refuse to compensate with anything else. I think I will go back to AM Platinum.

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avatar Rick Morgan

Seems that I’m the first person on here who actually had the Visa Black Card AND is going to share details about the services, not just rattle off the same marketing words used by Barclays in its promotions. I tried to use the concierge services many many times, but in all honestly it sucks. I’d call a hotel myself only to be told it was sold out. I’d call the concierge and they would call me back telling me the same thing. I tried more than 10 times to obtain concert tickets for a show that I was unable to get tickets for and the concierge would tell me it was sold out. In other words in the 3 years I had the card and the approx. 30-40 times I tried using the concierge service, it never provided any added benefit over what I was able/unable to do by myself with a smart phone. I had a limit of $26,500 and through the course of 1 year charged in excess of $35k in aggregate. They would not reduce the annual fee. It’s not that $500 is unreasonable, but I have to be receiving something of value. In my opinion, the only thing I recieved was non automated customer service, which I told myself justified the fee for the last 2 years. But more recently, I decided that alone was not worth $500. When I called to cancel, they didn’t care, simply said, ok, it’s closed, see ya! Surprising… Oh and they allowed through a $35,000 charge from my dry cleaner (which was greater than my credit limit)…

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avatar D Seif

BEWARE OF THE FAKE PROMISE OF EXCLUSIVE MEMBERSHIP!

I applied for and paid the $495 fee for this card back in April 2012 as a replacement for a Costco Amex card. I use this card for all purchases and business travel, so it’s important that it not only be reliable and work, but that the credit limit be sufficient to support my travel. While Barclay’s has tried to portray this card as a premium card with premium services – equivalent or better than those offered by Amex – I must wholeheartedly disagree.

Here are some of the less than ‘premium’ services with the card:

1) The credit limit was less than half of what we use with our Amex card. We use the card for all expenses every month and pay it off each month. But, by cutting the limit in less than half, we have to switch cards mid-month, making it more complex and harder to manage each month.
2) When attempting to increase the credit limit to something more reasonable, we were instructed that we’d have to wait six months before they could consider an increase.
3) We had both of our cards compromised at merchant retailers within a three week period – it took more than seven days to receive replacement cards via regular mail. Shouldn’t ‘black card’ service come with an expedited replacement card service for free?!?
4) The Airport Lounge perk that they so prominently advertise is nothing less than a joke – the only lounges that are supported are primarily international, unless you fly to Alaska as Alaska Airlines lounges are supported.
5) We paid the extra $195 for a companion card for my wife – but beware, as companions DON’T receive the premium Airport Lounge perk which is a separate card that has to be mailed to you.
6) The website to manage the card is one of the least sophisticated I’ve every seen – granted, it’s all black and gold, but the user interface is antiquated and archaic.
7) When we tried to close the account due to the lack of ‘premium’ service – we were instructed that because it was past the 60 day window, we could not get a refund, even pro-rated, of the membership fee for either card….$700 down the drain for the premium experience of working with Barclay’s Black Card.

If you want a card that actually lives up to its name – get an Amex Platinum card and skip the imitations. I’ve learned that lesson the hard way.

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avatar Ethan Franklin

This card SUCKS! For $500 per year you get nothing extra. There is absolutely nothing special that you can’t get from a standard card with no fee. Their concierge has no pull with any exclusive events or restaurants and their rewards program is at the lower end of the competition. DON’T waste your money.

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avatar Sheila

They will eat you alive with petty interest charges – regardless of payments made on time and credits to your account.

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avatar Alicia

I have the BlackCard, the worst card ever! You can not compared this card with AMEX. Today I spend 3 hours at the phone with them, spoke with at least 6 people, and the calls drop 4 times! They don’t help at all, and the Concierge people are worthless. Terrible, the Travel Services is the worst ever. I had already two bad experience one last year in an International trip and now they can not help me to change my flight day. I’m canceling my card and sticking with just AMEX, do not get this TERRIBLE card!

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avatar Bill

Over the phone, I was about to submit my application for the visa black card but it seemed like a bad deal. What broke the deal was that they wouldn’t tell me what my credit limit would be before I accept the card. I could potentially be stuck with a $5k joke of a limit card that costs $495 and would still be liable to pay that membership fee even if I cancel in 1 day. I can’t believe they don’t give you a grace period to cancel. I’ll stick with my AMEX platinum.

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