Virtual Credit Card: Secure & Free - Apply Instantly in India
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When the world turned digital, it brought many benefits to the consumers. Gone are the days when one had to travel to another corner of a city, or to a neighbouring town to buy their favourite things. Now, people can get access to all brands and products at the convenience of their homes, irrespective of their locations. They could do so much more virtually. So, one of the most unique things that the digital age conceived, is online shopping, and furthermore, the concept of a virtual credit card.

Virtual credit cards come handy in tackling one of the biggest menaces of online transactions, frauds. Although online shopping has brought great convenience on one hand, on the other hand the risk of exposure to fraudsters is also looming large. Not all shopping portals are safe and there’s always a chance of your credit card information falling into the wrong hands. And even if you are cautious on every step, these new-age tricksters are always a step ahead. Virtual credit cards can be your best bet in such times.

But what is this virtual credit card? How to use them? What are the benefits of virtual credit cards? Here’s all you need to know about virtual credit cards.

What is a virtual credit card?

As the name implies, unlike the physical debit or credit card, virtual credit card does not come in a physical form, i.e., you can only use it for online shopping and not for the over-the-counter purchases. Virtual credit card is a randomly generated 16-digit number, which is associated with your debit account and it is often allotted by the banks or the third party firms.

What are the features and benefits of using a virtual credit card?

A virtual credit card adds an extra layer of security for making any type of online payment. And that’s the greatest advantage you can have, a safe and secure, worry-free transaction. Here are a few important features of the virtual credit card that help keep your money safe from online frauds.

  • No physical card required

Virtual credit cards are not in any physical form like your regular debit or credit cards.

This makes cloning difficult and transactions secure. Further, although the virtual card is connected with your debit account, your actual debit card number is not used for the online transaction. This makes your virtual credit card free of major fraud risks, thereby keeping the fraudsters at bay.

  • Limited validity and small credits

Virtual credit card is a limited time card, that is, it is valid to use only for an approved number of transactions and also, for a limited time period only. Apart from this, virtual credit cards use small credit top ups. So your money in the bank account is actually safe. Kotak Mahindra Bank offers you Netc@ard, a virtual credit card with a validity of maximum 48 hours. This validity can be changed by the bank from time to time.

  • Remaining amount gets transferred back to your bank account

If for some reason the allotted validity of the virtual credit card ends before the utilization of your entire amount, then the remaining amount will be sent back to the account from where the card was created. Also, if you don’t use the full amount added to your virtual credit card, then that will be transferred back to your bank account as well.

All these features make your online shopping spree a pleasant experience and also makes your virtual credit card free of any risk and danger.

How to use virtual credit cards?

Virtual credit cards can be used for online transactions only. Just like any other debit or credit card, you have to simply enter your card details and CVV.

Kotak Mahindra Bank offers you a virtual credit card free of cost, called netc@rd. You can generate and use it in simple steps.

  • Go to the merchant website and select the product you wish to purchase.
  • Select the payment mode as “Debit Card” (VISA).
  • Then log in to the Kotak Net Banking and select the “netc@rd” tab. Upon receiving the OTP, click on “Generate Card”.
  • After that, select the account and enter the amount in numbers to generate your free virtual credit card.
  • Congratulations! Your card has been created. Your “Card No.”, “CVV2 value” and the “Expiry Date” will be displayed on the screen.
  • Please enter the virtual credit card details on the merchant payment page and confirm the payment. That’s it, you’re done!

How do Virtual Credit Cards Work?

A virtual credit card works like a debit or credit card with reference to the online transactions only. But since there is no physical card created, you cannot use it in places where a physical card is required.

Also keep in mind that virtual credit cards are usually single-time use and cannot be reloaded. Cash withdrawals and mail order or telephone order purchases are not possible.

You can top up your virtual credit card with as much money as you need to make the desired payment. But keep in mind that usually virtual credit cards have a very small credit limit. It comes with a regular 16-digit number, an expiry date, and CVV1 or CVV2 numbers.

What are the Eligibility Criteria of the Virtual Credit Card?

The eligibility criteria of a virtual credit card differ vastly from that of traditional credit card:

  • First of all, there is no need for a credit history to avail a virtual credit card.
  • You also don’t need to present the proof of income while generating your virtual credit card.
  • All resident Indian customers, NRE customers and foreigners registered for the net banking channel access are eligible for the virtual credit card.
  • They also must have at least one valid current/savings account with the concerned bank.

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Frequently Asked Questions


What are the fees and charges for Kotak virtual credit card?

Virtual credit cards are generally a free of cost service that the banks offer their customers.

Kotak Mahindra provides you with a free virtual credit card called the netc@rd, loaded with benefits. You are required to pay no fees or charges when creating or for using this virtual credit card.

How to pay rent through credit card?

A. The easiest way to pay rent is using credit cards. In this nothing is debited from your bank account. Instead the money is paid via the available line of credit. Rent payment through credit card is easy and just a few clicks away when it is linked to your UPI enabled app. Now you know how to pay rent through credit card.

How to use a credit card to pay rent?

When you use a credit card to pay rent, follow this -

  • Enter the payment information
  • Save receiver’s bank details, and select their account
  • Enter your PIN and complete payment

Can I create more than one virtual credit card?

A virtual credit card is usually offered free of cost to the customers.

Many banks have different policies for creating more than one virtual credit card. Some allow multiple applications, while others don’t. Kotak Mahindra Bank allows you to create a new virtual credit card once your existing card has expired.

Can I earn rewards and bonuses by paying the rent using a credit card?

A. Yes, you can earn reward points on your rent payment using credit cards. These earned points can be seen on the credit card statement. You’ll receive the statement monthly on your registered email ID. It means paying rent can be beneficial for earning more rewards with a credit card.

Can I use my virtual credit card for offline transactions?

Virtual credit card does not come in a physical copy, that is, it is meant for digital use only.

Therefore, you cannot use it at the store, nor can you use it to withdraw cash from the ATMs. However, you can use it for online transactions for a wide number of sites.

Can I do multiple transactions with my virtual credit card before it expires?

Kotak Mahindra netc@rd is a one-time use virtual credit card which comes with a validity of 48 hours.

That means when a virtual credit card is issued, you can only make a single transaction. Only when the card expires can you apply for a new card to make another transaction.

Will my credit score be impacted in case I pay the rent via a credit card?

A. Your credit score won’t be impacted when you pay rent with your credit card. But if you don’t pay the credit card bill after paying the rent with your credit card, surely it will be affected negatively.

For what kind of transactions can I use this virtual credit card?

A virtual credit card is a free digital credit card, which is designed to make your online purchases smooth and secure.

It is meant to protect you from online fraud. Therefore, your virtual credit card is only used for online transactions. Neither can you withdraw cash, nor can you swipe it at any store.

How is virtual credit card different from physical credit card?

A virtual credit card was especially designed to counter the risks that come with a traditional credit card.

Unlike a physical credit or debit card, which you can use at offline stores and for withdrawing cash from the ATMs, a virtual credit card is a digital card, which can only be used for online transactions.

Do I need to pay any amount if I apply for a virtual credit card?

A virtual credit card is free.

Yes, you heard that right. Kotak Mahindra’s netc@rd is a free virtual card. Unlike a traditional credit card, you neither have to pay any joining fee, nor do you have to pay any annual fees. You just have to visit the Kotak Mahindra Bank’s website and apply for the virtual credit card for free!

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Disclaimer: This Article is for information purposes only. The views expressed in this Article do not necessarily constitute the views of Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd. (“Bank”) or its employees. The Bank makes no warranty of any kind with respect to the completeness or accuracy of the material and articles contained in this Article. The information contained in this Article is sourced from empaneled external experts for the benefit of the customers and it does not constitute legal advice from the Bank. The Bank, its directors, employees and the contributors shall not be responsible or liable for any damage or loss resulting from or arising due to reliance on or use of any information contained herein. Tax laws are subject to amendment from time to time. The above information is for general understanding and reference. This is not legal advice or tax advice, and users are advised to consult their tax advisors before making any decision or taking any action.