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The Black Card from Barclays

Posted By Jim On 12/12/2008 @ 1:33 pm In Credit | 13 Comments

Ooooh, have you seen the latest and greatest in buying technology? Forged from carbon graphite by the hammer of Hephaestus himself, Barclays just announced The Black Card. It’s so exclusive that it’s available only to 1% of U.S. Residents. Only 1% of U.S. Residents get to experience the 24-Hour concierge service, only 1% get to enjoy “luxury gifts,” only 1% get to touch the patent pending carbon graphite card, and, of course, only 1% get to pay the $495 annual fee for a card that has offers few details about it.

You might be able to tell I’m a bit tongue and cheek about this thing, I was just surprised to see such an “exclusive” card advertise on site like Buy.com. I don’t associate Buy.com with luxury and exclusivity, I think of it like Amazon.com, a site you visit when you want to find good prices on regular products. You won’t find expensive brand named products there, unless it’s electronics, so it confused me why something so “exclusive” was advertising in a place that is normally frequented by us unwashed masses.

As for the card itself, if you’re into the whole exclusive card thing (and they are hoping you are) and have $495 a year to burn, it’s not that bad of a card. When you compare it to other affluent banking cards [3], like the American Express Black Centurion card, it seems to offer the same type of services but at a lower price point. The Barclays Black Card is made of a fancy material (ooooh graphite! like pencils!), offers the Travel Lounge Priority Pass, and the 24/7 concierge service. The Black Card also has a 0% APR on balance transfers for six months and a 1% cash back program – at only $495, not $2500 a year.

So, anyone running out and applying for this bad boy? It is the first time I’ve seen a company advertise an annual fee as an exclusive privilege!

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[3] affluent banking cards: http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/5-affluent-banking-credit-cards-you-cant-afford.html

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