What are the travel benefits for UK World Elite MasterCard holders?

Over the weekend Rob covered the Santander Select World Elite MasterCard and the HSBC Premier World Elite MasterCard.

As well as the specific benefits that come with each of these cards, there are some that are generic to all World Elite MasterCard products.  The main one is airport lounge access via LoungeKey which is available simply by showing your World Elite credit card at the door of any of the 870 participating lounges.

In the UK, MasterCard has negotiated a separate package of special benefits for its World Elite cardholders.  Both HSBC and Santander are poor at letting their customers know what they can claim, so we have put together this round up of the benefits.

world elite mastercard

Holiday benefits:

Abercrombie & Kent

5% booking discount on all holidays, ski chalets and villas

VIP status including priority upgrades where possible

Personal invitations to private events and dinners

Access to award-winning guides when travelling

Own Private Client Manager, a dedicated consultant to design your holiday requirements year-round

Hotel benefits:

Corinthia Hotels

Complimentary WiFi

Room upgrade at time of arrival, subject to availability

Early check-in upon arrival 10.00, subject to availability

4pm late check-out, subject to availability

Two complimentary bottles of still water on arrival

Fruit basket

Chef’s Treat on selected hotels that varies by property

Spa voucher on selected hotels

Fairmont Hotels & Resorts

Room upgrade (subject to availability on arrival)

Complimentary breakfast

$25 resort credit (valid for all hotels)

Late check-out until 16:00 on Saturdays and Sundays

Green Pearls

Complimentary local experience when staying at a selected Green Pearls Property

Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group

Complimentary daily breakfast for two

Room upgrade at time of arrival, subject to availability

Early check-in upon arrival, subject to availability

3pm late check-out, subject to availability

Special Amenity that varies per property


VIP welcome basket

£150 savings per stay

Raffles Hotels

Room Upgrade (on arrival)

Daily complimentary breakfast

Confirmed late check-out to 15:00

Complimentary welcome drink

Small Luxury Hotels of the World

3 nights for the price of two (paticipating hotels)

24 months Loved membership

Immediate Status Upgrade to “Loved” status

Complimentary room upgrades

Continental daily breakfast for two

Late check-out


Room upgrade (subject to availability on arrival)

Complimentary breakfast

Free internet

Late check-out until 16:00

Endless Weekend package with confirmed room upgrade, daily breakfast until 2pm and late check-out until 4pm

Leading Hotels of the World

Free daily continental breakfast for two

Free internet access

One-category room upgrades (subject to availability)

Welcome gifts at check-in

Special Leaders Club rates

Early check-in and late check-out

Invitations to Leaders Club events

Car hire benefits:


Free one class upgrade with every booking, subject to availability

Up to 15% discount off best available rates worldwide including Hertz Collections.

900 Gold Plus Rewards bonus points valid for a free weekend rental day

Free additional driver (spouse or civil partner)


Up to 15% discount on Sixt rent a car and Sixt rent a truck

20% discount on Sixt limousine (chauffeur) service in Germany, Austria and Switzerland

10% discount on limousine service in other countries

Other UK World Elite benefits:

Belstaff – complimentary monogramming leather jacket

Chic Outlet Shopping Villages – 10% off at selected boutiques, 15% off shopping packages

Mastercard Airport Concierge – 15% off airport meet and greet services

Gieves and Hawkes – £50 off £500 spend

The Hackett Membership Club – Join 65B club without a purchase

Turnbull & Asser – £50 off £500 spend

As you can see, there is an interesting mix of benefits here.  I doubt that anyone will be using the majority of them, but even if only one or two would be useful it could swing your decision as to whether you should apply (subject to income criteria etc) for HSBC Premier World Elite (see my main article here) or Santander Select (see our main article).

A PDF document explaining how to claim these benefits can be downloaded here.

(Want to earn more miles and points from credit cards?  Click here to visit our dedicated airline and hotel travel credit cards page or use the ‘Credit Cards Update’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

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  1. Mr Dee says:

    Nice, will come visit you at the Raffles hotel 🙂

  2. I have a Tesco “Finest” World MasterCard – don’t think these are offered any more. Certainly never realized that any of these benefits were available!

  3. Just noticed that the new IHG Premium Mastercard is also a “World” variety!

  4. Are there only 2 world elite cc in the UK or there are cheaper options available (interested in this card mostly because of the Lounge Key)? Cheers!

    • Coutts and some other private banks issue them. I don’t think there is anyone doing one which is available without a high income or investment requirement – Santander may be easiest.

      • George says:

        NatWest Black CC is (unadvertised) world elite – I have one. Question is whether it is worth the £84 fee.

        • If it allows you unlimited use of lounges and you travel regularly (and don’t have status with airline you are travelling with) then the answer is yes! Thanks for pointing at it!

        • However “Your NatWest Black Card:
          This credit card has been removed from sale, and as of 31st March 2017, all benefits of this card have now been removed for existing customers.”

        • George says:

          Hey AVM – the previous £250/y black card is dead, but the NatWest website still advertises the £84 reward black card I have- mine has the world elite logo on it. Will call them today and ask what it covers.

        • George, if you do call Natwest – please let us know what they’ve said – if this card works it could be a solution for me (or my wife rather – she travels a lot, but has no status)…

        • Andrew says:

          Natwest reward black credit card is neither world elite nor world… the old natwest black CC was world (no longer available)

        • George says:

          @Andrew- my card was issued as a reward black and has the world elite logo on the back – this is what I was going on (apologies if I’m mistaken)

          Will call NatWest tomorrow when back in the UK and find out for sure.

  5. Henrik says:

    A run down of the travel insurance benefits between this and amex plat (and other cards) would be an interesting piece for the blog. Particularly things like car rental, missed connections on separate tickets, policy for travel not paid with the card and general experience with claiming.

  6. rams1981 says:

    Just cancelled my HSBC card. Will re-apply in 6 months and hope for the bonus to kick in.

  7. Andrew (@andrewseftel) says:

    World Elite benefits aren’t what they used to be (I think Accor Platinum and Club Carlson Gold used to be on the list, amongst others); seems Mastercard just aren’t investing that much in the platform. Benefits are much better elsewhere – e.g. World Elite gets you Qatar Gold (Oneworld Sapphire) in the Middle East.

  8. the_real_a says:

    I still don’t fully understand with the EU capping, how World Elite Msstercard’s can charge merchants a higher fee… ??

    • I am assuming there is an opt-out for premium cards in the same way there is an opt out for Business Visa / MC products.

    • RussellH says:

      And is it fair to expect merchants to bear the increased cost? The likes of Tesco and Shell can negotiate their own fees directly with the card companies and I do not worry about them. But small businesses have to take the rates they are charged by their merchant acquirer, and you cannot refuse to accept a World Elite Mastercard if you advertise that you accept Mastercard. But if the card carries a healthy annual fee, then that will probably cover much, if not all, of the perks that many cardholders (perhaps not those here!) actually make use of?

      • Although for some card processors the fee they charge you as a seller is high enough that they just accept all cards (eg iZettle – we don’t put much through it so 2.75% fee, but they accept pretty much everything (MasterCard, Visa, American Express, Maestro, V pay, Visa Electron, JCB, Diners Club, China Union Pay). Lower fees if higher throughput but no differentiation which card is used.

  9. Lewis Watson says:

    Are these the only two world elite cards in the UK?

    My ihg card says master card world. Is that mid tier between elite and regular mater card?

  10. Re the HSBC card, I don’t understand how an individual earning 100k is eligible but not a couple earning 60k plus 40k?

  11. Am I going mad but was there reference to uber credit in this article earlier today?

  12. Today I tried to make booking at a LHW hotel using the benefits but was informed that the promotion with MasterCard had been suspended.

    Subsequently I emailed MasterCard using the [email protected] address detailed in the back of their 2017 World of Recognition booklet and received a bounce stating that the address was not valid.

    This seems a novel way to deal with complaints.