While the credit card program may benefit from the expansion of the More Rewards loyalty program to even more partners, ultimately we think the program doesn’t offer shoppers near the value they can get from using alternative credit cards available in the market – whether shopping in More Rewards partner stores, or elsewhere.
Scotia has improved the credit card’s value proposition for spend within More Rewards partner locations, allowing cardholders to earn 6 points per dollar spent instead of the 4 with the old MBNA’s More Rewards card. The problem is shoppers can get more value using a no-fee 2% cash back card at More Rewards partner stores, than the More Rewards Visa card.
We also notice one significant decrease in the customer value proposition. The More Rewards Visa card from Scotia doesn’t offer the 25,000 point welcome bonus that MBNA offered to incentivize new applications. We’re curious to see if that changes.
More Rewards Credit Card Summary
- Earn 6 points per dollar spent on purchases at partner locations (including save-on-foods, Overwaitea, Cooper’s Foods, Urban Fare, PriceSmart Foods, Panago, Oxygen Yoga & Fitness, Coast Hotels, Accent Inns, Canadian Direct Insurance, The Jim Pattison Auto Group, and Petro Canada)
- Earn 4 points per dollar spent on purchases everywhere else
- Ability to “double-dip” – show your More Rewards loyalty card at More Rewards partner locations1 to earn an additional 1 point per dollar spent
- Frequent in-store bonus points offers
- No annual fee
- Redeem your points for travel, groceries and merchandise
More Rewards Points Valuation
We’ve done some quick valuations to determine the value of the points for various redemptions, and the resulting value earned at 6 points per dollar spent at partners and 4 points at non-partners with the credit card. The More Rewards Visa card can offer absolutely stupendous value, if you redeem your points through travel. Average value if you redeem for gift cards and other merchandise.
If you redeem for travel, you will receive .42% per point. Put another way, earning 6 points per dollar spent, you will earn the equivalent of 2.52% per dollar spent when spending at a More Rewards participating store or partner and redeeming for travel. When using your credit card elsewhere, you would receive 1.68% value when redeeming for travel. For a no fee credit card, that’s simply superb value.
If you’re redeeming for non-travel items, the value is less compelling:
- Best Buy Gift Card: $25 for 16,000 points ($25/16,000=.0015625)
- At 6 points per $1 spent at partners the value is .93%
- At 4 points per $1 spent at non-partners the value is .62%
- Accent Inn Gift Card: $75 for 36,000 points ($75/36,000=.00208)
- At 6 points per $1 spent at partners the value is 1.25%
- At 4 points per $1 spent at non-partners the value is .83%
- 3rd Generation Apple TV: $82.79 for 43,000 points ($83.79/43,000=.001948)
- At 6 points per $1 spent at partners the value is 1.16%
- At 4 points per $1 spent at non-partners the value is .78%
More Rewards Credit Card Evaluation
The More Rewards credit card offers a ton of value for folks who want a no fee travel rewards credit card. When redeeming for travel, the Scotia More Rewards Visa card offers more value than most credit cards – by a large margin.
However, if you’re not redeeming for travel, consumers can earn far greater rewards in More Rewards partner stores using cashback credit cards, than the Save On More card itself.
Taking a look at the analysis above, the Save On More credit card earns you a maximum of 1.25% at partner locations. However, there are already several no fee cash back credit cards which earn you the same, such as the American Express Simply Cash card which offers 1.25% cashback on all spend, and 5% cashback on gas and groceries for the first 6 months. There are also other cashback cards that offer 2% cash back on gas and groceries at all times, such as the no-fee Tangerine cash back card.
The More Rewards Visa card gives you even worse value for non More Rewards spend, earning you far less than 1%. There’s no excuse for anyone to be using a credit card which gives you less than 1% value in today’s Canadian credit card landscape. There are plenty of no-fee credit cards offering at least 1% on all spend, including cashback cards from BMO, MBNA, Amex, CapitalOne and Tangerine.
Your best bet is to use a no fee cash back card which gets you at least 2% in store, and then collect Save On More point with the loyalty card. Do not even consider using this card at non More Rewards partner locations. Getting less than 1% is just not acceptable in today’s market.
The Scotiabank More Rewards Visa card is really a tale of two tapes. Redeem for travel, and it’s a phenomenal credit card. Redeem for other gift cards or merchandise, and you really have to be careful.