Most credit cards are made out of plastic–it’s cheap and resilient, so what’s not to like? But if you want to differentiate yourself from the hoi polloi, metal cards are an easy way to do so. They’re also an expensive way to do so, which is why metal credit cards are for premium products. Let’s take a look at the metal credit cards out there.
Chase Sapphire Preferred: It’s not Chase Sapphire Preferred week anymore, but still: the CSP is the most famous metal card, the most popular one, as well as the cheapest with an annual fee of $95 (waived the first year). Though I’m obliged to point out that it’s not metallic all the way through–it’s actually metal sandwiched between layers of plastic. Still, it’s got more of a heft than most cards. And let’s not forget it’s high-end counterpart, the Chase Sapphire Reserve.
Chase Marriott: Chase does like the metal cards, don’t they? Unfortunately they all come with annual fees. In the case of the Marriott card, the annual fee gets you a “free” category 1-5 room every year, but I don’t think it’s worth it.
Chase Ritz Carlton and Chase United Club: We’re not done with Chase yet! They do like their metal credit cards, don’t they? The Chase Ritz Carlton can be a good deal if you snag the 140K offer. Andy has some good posts about this card here and here, while Travel Is Free just put up a solid post on another use of Marriot points you may or may not be familiar with.
J.P. Morgan Chase Palladium: Let’s have a look at this one:
Oh yeah… that’s palladium and 24K gold you’re looking at. You signature will be laser-etched onto it. But it’s got a $595 annual fee, and even if you’re willing to pay that, you have to have a private banking relationship with Chase, which would apparently involve at least $250K in assets. The benefits aren’t great: 2 Ultimate Rewards points per dollar spent on travel, 1 point everywhere else. There’s also a 35,000-point bonus if you spend $100,000, plus the requisite concierge (reputedly quite good) and some other benefits.
Amazon Prime Rewards card: Metal cards tend to be high-end products since it’s expensive to make metal credit cards (and to replace them when you lose them or the number gets stolen). If you want a metal card without an annual fee, give this one a look.
U.S. Bank Altitude Reserve: U.S. Bank’s 2017 entry into an increasingly crowded premium travel card market, it has some decent benefits plus a good sign-up bonus that can make it worth signing up for a year.
MasterCard Black Card: Issued by Barclays, this was originally the high-end card that nobody cared about since its benefits didn’t match the $495 annual fee. But hey, it was made out of stainless steel. They’re retooled it into a brand called the “Luxury Card”, possibly because Amex sued them for a trademark violation and won. You have three options: titanium, black, and gold, and the gold card may have a bonus big enough to make it worth getting for a year.
Amex Centurion: The gold standard of exclusive credit cards, this card is informally known as the black card, thus the lawsuit I just mentioned. It’s made of titanium and boasts an initiation fee of $7,500 plus an annual fee of $2,500 (but they still charge you a $38 late fee if you miss a payment). The card is invitation only. Amex won’t divulge its criteria, but eligibility is apparently based on things like income, spending, and possibly fame. If you’re eligible for the card, they’ll let you know.
Amex Platinum: Much more attainable than the Centurion, this one still has an annual fee of $550 (recently raised from $450). Those good-for-nothings also nuked the Centurion lounge benefit and made it family-unfriendly.
Dubai First Royale Card: Check this one out:
Yes, that’s gold trim on the top and the left with a diamond embedded in the center. No, there’s no “First Friday” with this card as there is with the Chase Sapphire Preferred.
Pure + Solid MasterCard debit card: If you’re a fool with too much money, these cards would be worth looking into. There are platinum, gold, and silver cards, each crafted using their eponymous metals, which is why the Platinum one will set you back $38,690.
Your Own Customized Metal Card: I had no idea this company existed, but apparently the good folks at Metal-CreditCard.com will convert any credit card you want into a metal credit card with a design of your choice for $149. Here’s one possible design from the company’s website:
This would be a great design to do manufactured spending with! What clerk is going to tell you they won’t accept a card like that?
The downside is that if your credit card number happens to get stolen, you’ll have to pay $149 for a new card.
That’s all I’m aware of… did I leave any out?
The Chase Marriott, which I like to think of as a black Chase Sapphire Preferred that can only be used at Marriott…
Thanks, I knew I forgot one.
Gary Leff says
Reports in the forums are that the Palladium concierge is no longer as good as it used to be, apparently Chase is now using the same concierge company for Palladium as they do for the Ritz-Carlton card. Other benefits include a United Club membership and a Lounge Club membership with free guest included. There’s no signup bonus.
Good to know, Thanks Gary.
Capital One Venture is also a metal card, and the annual fee is lower than CSP.
Did not know that, thanks. I haven’t applied for a CapOne card in many years.
Since when is the Capital One Venture metal? I have one and mine is not metal.
Chase also provides its Marriott-branded card in metal — seems heavier to me than the Sapphire. Unlike the Ritz-Carlton, the Marriott card can be had free the first year (per some offers).
I had initially assumed everyone got a metal version, but apparently the metal cards are something Capital One has just started testing in the last month on Venture & VentureOne. There are some posts about it on myFICO forums.
Martin Sweeze says
you forgot the exclusive PURE + SOLID MasterCards.
No it’s not , that’s a lie
Peter Stines says
This card can be used anywhere, not only at Marrott. You earn special perks if used at Marriott.
Lawrence Anderson says
You forgot the Mastercard Black Card/Luxury Card.
You can get another one @ zero.
Zero Fees – up to 3% Cashback
I have all three Chase metal cards. Least heaviest: Chase Sapphire Preferred, then Marriott and Ritz-Carlton is the heaviest. I love handing the Ritz Carlton to cashiers; I ALWAYS get a comment on it 😀
Does anyone know if the new Chase Sapphire Reserve card is metal?
The CSR is a metal card, however with Chase having such a surge in applications from the HUGE rewards bonus, the initial card will be a plastic card and it will be replaced by a metal card when the cards come “back in stock”
This is a new one, also issued by Chase: Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card. Amazon Prime members get 5% back on Amazon purchases, 2% at restaurants, gas stations, and drug stores, and 1% elsewhere. No annual fee but if your prime membership ($99/yr) lapses, you’ll only get 3% back on Amazon purchases. You do get to keep the metal card, though.
Yes I have it, it’s pretty sweet. Nothing laser etched tho, thin plastic with details and logo and metal core, you can definitely feel the weight of the metal.
Us bank altitude reserve and Amex Plat are also metal
Thanks, I need to update this post. 🙂
Visa Black Card? Did you even do your research on this?
Yes, I did my research, but I typed “Visa” instead of “MasterCard”. Fixed.
Nolan Murray says
Agreed, how could you forget Mastercard Black Card?
Yeah a glorified debit card..
Thanks but no thanks… and the referral link is noted…