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What is a black credit card?

The American Express Black Card is a high-end option that can only be obtained by invitation. Black Amex cards, also known as Centurion® Cards from American Express, have become symbols of wealth and status in our culture.

What you should know about the American Express Centurion® Card

According to online reports, in order to be invited to apply again for the Centurion® Card from American Express, you need to spend a particular amount on an Amex card each year in order to be invited to apply again. In addition to the $10,000 joining charge, American Express’ Centurion® Card has an annual cost of $5,000. In addition to the prestige, the card’s key benefits appear to include complimentary hotel stays, access to Centennial Lounges, Continental Medallion status, and a personalized concierge service available around the clock.

There are, however, a few more options available to you if you are seeking a black card, which you are actually able to apply for. They won’t carry the same societal weight, but neither will their fees be as outrageous as other options.

Here are a few black credit cards that stand out:

Generally:

Mastercard® Black grants 1 point for every $1 spent. Points are worth 2 cents for flights and 1.5 cents for cash back. You’ll also receive a $100 yearly air travel credit, a 24/7 travel agency, and a $100 Global Entry application credit. Approval requires acceptable credit. $495/year.

There is no annual fee: 

There is no annual fee associated with the RBC Bank Visa Premium Black Credit Card. You earn one point for every dollar spent, and these points can be redeemed through RBC Rewards. To be accepted, you will need to have good credit.

Ideal for vacationing:

Each year, this black card costs $650. After spending $5,000 in the first three months, you can get 150,000 bonus points and a free stay from Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant. When you spend $1 at a Marriott Bonvoy hotel, you get 6 points. The card lets you get up to $300 back on your statement each year (up to $25 per month) for spending at restaurants.

Invite-only:

The American Express Centurion® Card is for high-spending members. $5,000 annual membership fee and $10,000 induction fee Legionary Lounges, hotel benefits, Delta Trinket status, and a personal concierge are all included. Membership Rewards give one point for every dollar spent.

The secrecy and exclusivity of American Express’ Centurion® Card lend an air of mystery to black credit. Most of us don’t have enough money to qualify for the real thing, so we can’t apply. If your credit card has good terms, its color doesn’t matter.

You’d be better off with a Chase Freedom Preferred, Citi Triple Cash Card, or Capital One Venture. Some credit card providers, notably Wells Fargo, enable you to modify your card’s look.

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