FlatTrade and Kotak Securities: Two Leading Zero Brokerage Option Trading Platforms

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If you are a beginner to options trading, especially naked buying with controlled capital for learning purposes, you might be looking for a zero-brokerage trading broker, right?

We have so many state-of-the-art trading platforms over there. Zerodha, Upstox, and Angle One are a few to name, but these premium platforms, along with offering cutting-edge services, are a bit costly for a beginner as far as the brokerage is concerned.

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As you might know, the standard brokerage per option trade is Rs 40, comprising both entry and exit fees. Well, if you are a highly experienced trader, it might be a meager amount for you as long as you are emotionally strong and capable of taking controlled trades when it comes to options trading.

Warning: I am not a professional trader or financial advisor of any kind. Only a retailer trader with a passion for writing and blogging. My writings on this blog and other connected platforms are meant for educational purposes only. Learn more here. Make sure you base your decisions solely on your convictions and studies. 

But the story is completely different for a beginner, who might be finding it hard to keep discipline at least in trades in the early stages and will be losing a notable amount in brokerage, apart from the losses in trades.

So, if you think you are a member of that group, here you have two zero-brokerage trading platforms: FlatTrade and Kotak Securities.

There are indeed more platforms in India that offer brokerage-free options trading, but in this article, I would like to focus on FlatTrade and Kotak Securities, which I have gone hands-on with in real trading, and, therefore, I can come up with quality reviews and comparisons of them here in this blog post.

Stay tuned for my detailed take on each trading platform below.

Introduction to FlatTrade and Kotak Securities

FlatTrade is one of the leading zero-brokerage trading terminals in India, and it is run by a Chennai-based company, Fortune Capital Services Pvt Ltd.

Parent Company: Fortune Capital Services Pvt Ltd
Brokerage: 0 Brokerage on Equity Delivery, F&O and Intraday in NSE, BSE and MCX
Joining Fee: Rs 200
MTF Interest Rate: 18%
Asset Classes: Stocks, IPOs, F&Os, Commodities, and more.

Open Your FlatTrade Account Here

This broker charges you no brokerage on all trades, covering equity delivery, equity intraday, and futures and options in both equity and indexes.

FlatTrade offers trading and investment facilities in all asset classes, like stocks, IPOs, commodities, F&O, and currency. You need to pay only Rs. 200 as an account opening charge to get going with this zero brokerage trading terminal.

The next is Kotak Securities, which, as you can see, is a more popular brand as it is from Kotak Mahindra Bank. Unlike FlatTrade, Kotak Securities Limited (KSL) is one of the oldest stock broking firms in India, and it offers full-fledged investment and trading services in all the popular asset classes.

Parent Company: Kotak Mahindra Bank
Brokerage: 0 Brokerage on All Intraday Trades (Trade Free Plan)
Different Plans: Trade Free Youth, Trade Free Plan, and Trade Free Pro
Joining Fee: Rs 99 to Rs 299 as per Plans.
MTF Interest Rate: 9.7% (Trade Free Pro)
Asset Classes: Stocks, IPOs, F&Os, Commodities, and more.

Open Your Kotak Securities Account Here

Kotak Securities is indeed the biggest of the duo for its number of customer accounts, branches, franchises, networks, and more. When it comes to zero-brokerage trading, Kotak has multiple plans that may match your needs perfectly.

The most attractive one, in my view, is the Trade Free Plan, which costs a one-time payment of Rs. 99 and is meant for investors over the age of 30. What you get in the plan is a facility to go for intraday trades at no cost, including F&Os. But if you carry forward an F&O position, it costs you Rs. 20, as usual with other platforms out there.

Another plan with Kotak is Trade Free Youth, which is meant for investors under 30 years of age. Costing Rs 299 for the first year, it offers you zero brokerage on all types of trades, including F&O, mutual funds, IPOs, and more.

Finally, we have a rather premium plan called the Trade Free Pro plan, which costs you Rs 249 per month. The perk with the plan is that you can do all intraday trades at zero brokerage, while you get four times more leverage with the Margin Trading Facility with an annual interest rate of 9.75%.

My Reviews at a Glance

As a user of both FlatTrade and Kotak Securities for around one month (December 2023) as part of my rigorous testing of the platforms to prepare this article, I would rather stand for the former, i.e., FlatTrade.

Though FlatTrade is not as famous as Kotak Securities, it looked more responsive in executing orders (that must be the key factor) in my tests, but both platforms at times failed to load properly because of some technical glitches.


What I Love the Most

  • Zero Brokerage on All Trades
  • Simple and Easy Interface
  • Quick and Easy Order Placements
  • Simple View of Charts, Option Chain, and Market Depth
  • Flexible Order Window

Open Your FlatTrade Account Here

What I Don’t Love the Most

  • P&L and Fund Withdrawals are on the Back Office Page
  • Slow Loading Time of the Back Office Page
  • The Back Office Interface is not Very Good
  • Not Much Reliable with Connectivity Issues

Both platforms are not perfect when it comes to the interface and technical artistry, but I say with clear conviction that I am more in love with FlatTrade’s interface, as it has a very simple and easy interface, which I even felt like my regular broker, Zerodha.

Personally, what I find more exciting about FlatTrade is the notification sound while executing orders, which Kotak doesn’t have. Kotak’s interface has not been very exciting for me, as it appeared very sluggish in executing orders.

Kotak Securities

What I Love the Most

  • Zero Brokerage on All Intraday Trades
  • An Impressive and Simple Trading Interface
  • Option Chains and Investing Tools on a Single Go
  • Option Chain with Per-Lot Pricing
  • Highly User-Friendly and Flexible Order Window
  • Reports and Funds Accessible on the Main Interface

Open Your Kotak Securities Account Here

What I Don’t Love the Most

  • Slower and Sluggish Order Placements
  • Carry-over Positions are Chargeable in the Trade Free Plan
  • Not Much Reliable with Glitches and Connectivity Bugs
  • Age-Based Trading Plans and Packages

At times, it took more time to execute orders with Kotak, but I never felt that with its alternative during my period of testing. However, to be frank, both platforms looked unreliable for some hours while I was doing trades on a monthly expiry day.

Screenshot: The FlatTrade brokerage savings window during the testing period.

FlatTrading My Brokerage Savings

Please Find my Brokerage Savings on FlatTrade Here

In the meantime, access to FlatTrade after market hours, especially on weekends, is sometimes found to be limited. It may be because the engineering team behind it will be working on improving some bugs or glitches during the inactive hours.

Screenshot: My Kotak Securities P&L during the testing period.

Kotak Securities P and L Page

Notice: This can be a very biased review of mine, and someone else will certainly have another view. You can analyze both platforms by opening accounts with them if you are seriously looking for a zero-brokerage options trading platform.

Notice: Both FlatTrade and Kotak Securities are free-brokerage trading and investment platforms. Before joining them, you must realize that managing such platforms requires high server capacity, technical backup, and customer service, which these free platforms won’t always be able to meet as professionally as their premium alternatives.

Hence, there can be a good chance for you to face unexpected technical glitches and subsequent losses of your profits or even capital. Also, the customer service departments of the platforms may not be performing at the level that you can expect from premium platforms like Zerodha, Upstox, and more.

But if they work well, I’m sure you will be lucky enough to save a lot in brokerage. 

The Web Traffic Comparison

Next in my FlatTrade vs. Kotak Securities comparison, I would like to analyze the internet popularity and web traffic of the homepages of these two platforms.

As you know already, Kotak has a clear edge over FlatTrade as far as the number of customers is concerned, but let’s see the web traffic metrics of the platforms here with the data from the SEMRush analytical tool.

FlatTrade Web Traffic Analysis

Let us begin with FlatTrade. As of my testing in December 2023, FlatTrade has an organic traffic of around 5K per month, and the authority score of the website is 31. Of course, 70% of the traffic is from India.

When it comes to Kotak Securities, the difference is huge and is not even comparable at all. As you can guess, Kotak has manifold internet traffic and web popularity compared to the FlatTrade alternative.

Kotak Securities Web Traffic Analysis

As of December 2023, Kotak’s home page has a regular visit count of nearly 600,000 per month, and the authority score is above 50. Being one of the oldest brokers in India, nothing is surprising in this metric. 93% of the traffic to Kotak is from India.