HDFC Bank Smartbuy 5X Rewards Points for Infinia and Diners Club Black customers

We have written extensively about the HDFC Diners 10x program. HDFC Bank Diners Club 10X Rewards were my favourite kind of reward currency primarily due to some offbeat transfer partners they provided in India. The list went away in 2016, but still, I look at it as a 33% cashback card, with all the cashback going towards travel.

The list of 10X partners frequently gets updated, but no major shakeups, until yesterday. The focus has been on travel & e-commerce. They initially put out a year-long list of partners, but then recalled it, and started to extend the date of the promotion by the months. Here are the announcements for AprilMayJune & July 2016. Then, it got extended through March 2017 but applied caps on reward earning per month, and a one-month extension through April 2017. In May, they put a new list valid through July 2017. Subsequently, they added all categories of SmartBuy on the list as of July 2017. In the last reveal, they knocked off the travel category. You can now access this category through SmartBuy which is for everyone who is an HDFC Bank Credit Card Holder.

HDFC Bank Diners Club & Infinia Smartbuy 5X Reward Points

Today, HDFC Bank has confirmed that SmartBuy would continue through April 2019, but it would now be half of what it was in the last update. This is usual for April, as a full offer is not revealed in April, but it comes later.

Smartbuy 5X

That means you could earn 5X points for the following activities with HDFC SmartBuy here on:

  • Flight Booking
  • Hotel Booking
  • Shopping via Flipkart & Amazon
  • Comparison shopping via the SmartBuy website.
  • This offer does not apply to the purchase of jewellery/gold coins or its equivalents.
  • This offer does not apply to the purchase of prepaid cards/gift cards or its equivalents.

The Diners Club Black customers and Infinia Customers, they get 5X Reward Points. Other Credit Card and Debit Card customers will get a maximum of 5% cashback on their products.

  • Infinia Customers will get a maximum of 25,000 Reward Points, worth INR 1 each in this calendar month.
  • Diners Club Black Customers will get a maximum of 15,000 Reward Points, worth INR 1 each in this calendar month.
  • Other Credit & Debit Card holders will get a maximum of INR 2000 cashback.

That means, for Diners Club Black, the maximum purchase value in April 2019 should be INR 112,500 for using the Diners Club Black on the Smartbuy portal. For Infinia customers, they can use their card for a total of INR 187,500 to maximise the promotion on the Smartbuy portal.

At the moment, there is still no information on the Diners 10X programme or the International Spend 10X programme, but the T&C updated on some partner merchants such as Bookmyshow reveal it to be continued till June 2019.

The 5x points do not apply to the HDFC Bank JetPrivilege co-branded Diners card. There is no extension on the 10X for International Spend at the moment.

Bottomline

You now get a return of 16.5% on your spends with Diners Club Black or Infinia Credit Card, as compared to the 33% so far. But even then, the conditions attached here are much lesser as compared to shopping around on various websites for ticket discounts.
This is an evident devaluation no less of the proposition that everyone got used to on the Smartbuy site. I hope that when HDFC Bank announces the 10X proposition for Diners Club Black customers, they have an OTA on the partner’s list.
Remember, the Diners Club Black proposition has been diluted since 2016 as well, when first the partners were eliminated, then the unlimited points were capped to 50,000, and then to 25,000 and so on.
This is not a drill, and this is not an April Fools Joke either. So what do you make of the now 50% value proposition of the HDFC Bank Diners Club and HDFC Bank Infinia Smartbuy 5X proposition?
(HT Kumar MS)

Comments

  1. Wondering if it makes sense to ditch Diners Black and go for Infinia in the current scenario?

    Or wait for the Intermiles Amex to be released? (I had surrendered my Amex Jet Privilege last month or so).

    Cheers,
    Shishir

  2. With the death of Jet Privilege program, I am planning to convert my Jet Diners Club card to either Diners Black or Infinia. My RM recommends Infinia, but 10X rewards on DCB are hard to ignore. What do you recommend I go for?

  3. Now I see some update on SmartBuy website, with 10X offer, with expiry date until March 31st 2020. Is it true? :O

  4. Surprisingly the smartbuy website has started showing 10X offer again this evening with a cap of 25000. It was 5X this morning when I read your blog. I think HDFC played a prank on april fools day.

  5. This is a downgrade alright for dcb ! 5x with a 15k cap! And why place dcb lower than infinia ?
    Most people chose dcb over infinia given a choice because of the additional 10x on diners. Now since HDFC places dcb below infinia wonder who is gonna choose dcb unless they come up with something significant on the additional 10x front and improve their offline acceptance .

  6. Redeeming points for a 100 point flight is a 10% loss (avg) because market rate by ota is 90 and 75-80 for hotel redemption so with a 16.5% cashback DCB will lose its charm people no more need to be insecure due to poor diners club coverage.R.I.P

  7. I read your site and I buy Rs 2000 tickets also. If your site is only meant for people who buy Rs. 2,00,000 tickets then put up a banner saying it’s only for them. I’m a Infinia holder and still buy 2000 and 200000 also. Kindly don’t insult people who shop for tickets on various sites because it’s their hard earned money and not hype drummed up earned money unlike others.

      • @Avinash, you felt hurt by something, we reread it and did not find it in good taste if you did not find it in good taste, so we edited it out to ensure readers don’t get rubbed in the wrong. Now, where is the problem here? Can we close this now?

  8. I plan to switch over to Citi Prestige again.. More or less same value like DCB when I book tickets on other OTAs with promotions. Plus I get a lot many airline partners to transfer my points.

  9. I think that’s the end of Diners Black usage. 10X was the main motivation to use this card. Else for travel, we generally get 1200-1500 cashback offers normally on other OTAs using any other card. So the usage of Diners club will be down until 10X comes back!

  10. Read this on other blog as well. So yeah, definitely not a April fool joke.

    Anyway, was running to get DCB upgrade but now, will depend on the 10x partners list. Else not really worth it tbh.

    Infact, considering what someone said- that most times when you book via OTA, you mostly get 8-10% discount depending on size of your booking.

    + Regular points

    So I wouldn’t be too heartbroken if they include 10x partner without code requirements. Would infact be much better.

    P.S –
    guess that’s end of my Diners premium except 10x partners like Ubers and TataCliq.
    SCB Ultimate will be my go to card I think for most places and Premieremiles for travel

    • Never really looked into SCB Ultimate but doesn’t it have the same reward point ratio of 5 points for every 150 spend? No other major benefits aside from this. Premiermiles has also been devalued to 0.45 per mile. Wondering if I’m missing anything here?

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