Visa lounge access to be cut for some cardholders

A while ago I wrote about Visa’s big plans to become the biggest credit card lounge network in India. The company intends to go from 5 cities right now to 22 cities shortly. This move should make them competitive with the Visa Lounge Access program, a realm they lack in right now as compared to MasterCard and Amex.

However, it turns out that is not the only plan that Visa has for their lounge network. They will also be reducing the lounge visit privileges for some of their members. It turns out that the Signature and Business cards will be on this list.

Visa Lounge Access

Currently, Visa Signature & Business cards are offered two lounge visits per quarter free of cost, but once the new program is implemented, they will be cut down to one lounge visit per quarter free, and the rest of the visits will be charged to the card.

While we still don’t have a timeline for the implementation of the change, it looks like both the changes will happen hand in hand. Which means, Visa will sign up more lounges and then cut access as well to the Signature & Corporate/Business cardholders. I’d expect this to be rolled out in October 2018, given that the current program is scheduled to last through September 2018.


This is not great news for Visa Signature cardholders when it happens, and the only thing that Visa cardholders can do is to upgrade to a higher tier card if they’d like to have their privileges.

What do you think about the above move from Visa to cut down lounge access for certain members?


  1. Too many people visiting the free lounge these days, this was always coming I guess !? I am glad I have Visa Infinite and Diners Black.

  2. If i have three signature cards issued by three different banks, i can make three visits free of charge by using each one of them once?

  3. Also Jet HDFC Diners card or diners black are good deal at 5000 Rs renewal fee and unlimited lounge access.

    with Jet HDFC diners card, will get retun value in terms of miles, one-way ticket, discount coupon on return ticket etc.

    • Majumdar,
      I wish mate. Way beyond my current tax returns.
      If had that 50lpa eligibility, would have gone for Diners Black, no questions.

  4. “…upgrade to a higher tier card” – Theres only 1 option available for that – Infinite. And even that does not shower you with substantial no. of visits… currently its 4 per quarter I guess.

    Overall this looks like a cheap move esp. when Amex and Diners Club are showering unlimited visits with their high-end offerings. Heck, even Rupay will now do better with their Platinum debit variant, offering 2 visits per quarter.

  5. Soooo..
    Seems midtier point enthusiasts like me will be screwed :p

    I have Visa signature in Citibank Premiremiles, IDFC debit card (also couple of MasterCard debit, HDFC diners premium and SBI IRCTC which yet to get and Amex Gold Charge).

    I had applied for ICICI jet amex Saphhiro but they apparently delayed submission due to some issues and have asked me to pay full 5k fees.
    While earlier wasn’t sure if I should, now, I am tempted due to unlimited lounge access.

    Wanted your thoughts on that: worth it to go for ICICI amex jet @5k? Or would be better to go for HDFC world signature?
    Travel approx 5 round trips a quarter from Ahmedabad. (Where there is no lounge anyway)

    Also, wanted some tips/suggestions for a trip I am taking to Singapore/Bali. Any chance you can let me know good time and medium to connect?

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