GreedyRates en-us GreedyRates June 2017 Roundup: New Promotions and Card Updates Tue, 20 Jun 2017 14:15:44 -0400
American Express
One of the biggest issues Canadian cardholders have traditionally taken with American Express is its limited usability, since many locations don't accept this form of payment. Well, Amex has listened to the public’s longstanding complaints, and they’ve made some significant policy changes this month that will make their cards far more accessible to the average Joe and could dramatically broaden their reach.

Policy changes include:

American Express has removed the minimum income requirement for new card applicants. In the past, you needed to have at least a $40,000 personal income to be eligible. Now, any Canadian can apply. This opens the door to students, low-income citizens, or those who work off the books.
They’ve also loosened up their bankruptcy-free policy for new applicants. Formerly, new applicants had to be bankruptcy free for at least 7 years prior to application. That period has now been reduced to only 2 years, a major game changer for Canadians who had a rough spot but have worked their way out of it.

And regarding the fun stuff, each type of card that American Express offers has an updated and improved membership rewards points status.

American Express Business Platinum Card: Receive 40,000 Membership Rewards Points!
American Express Business Gold Card: Receive 30,000 Membership Rewards Points!
American Express Gold Rewards Card: Receive 25,000 Membership Rewards Points!
American Express SimplyCash Preferred™ Card: 5% Cash Back on ALL Purchases For First 6 months (up to $300 cash back), 2% After!

There's also a first-year annual fee waiver (save $99) for the Gold Rewards card, making it even more appealing, and the Platinum card is a must-have for frequent flyers with a lot of travel perks like lounge access and elite status.
National Bank World Elite Mastercard
Sign up anytime before August 15th, 2017, and get 25,000 bonus points in return (up to $250 in value). This promo is coming as part of National Bank’s bold move toward the travel sector. They’ve previously not been very active in this industry, so it should be a good chance for Canadian cardholders to reap more benefits from the healthy competition that this card will generate. Click here to apply for it now.
Capital One
Last but not least, Capital One cards have finally been reviewed by our GreedyRates' staff! Check back for more updated Capital One card reviews for the best deals and promotions around. In the meantime, enjoy the Capital One Guaranteed Secured MasterCard, a perfect choice for those in need of some credit score repairing!]]>
The Canadian Tire Options® MasterCard® Wed, 14 Jun 2017 16:16:07 -0400
No annual fee
0% APR financing on purchases of $200 or more at Canadian Tire
Earn Canadian Tire Money at a flat 2x rate on all purchases
Earn Canadian Tire Money at a 10x rate at Canadian Tire and partner stores
Redeem Canadian Tire Money at the pump, or in the store
24/7 customer service
Optional identity theft deterrence features

[button color="red" size="medium" link="" target="blank" ]Apply Now![/button]

For the millions of Canadians who rely on their local Canadian Tire to fill up their vehicles, buy necessities for the family and more, the Canadian Tire Options® MasterCard® has the potential to save hundreds if not thousands of dollars on these types of purchases each year. Cardholders earn Canadian Tire Money everywhere, participating in a valuable rewards points system redeemable directly at the gas pump, or for food, toys, and lifestyle products in Canadian Tire locations across the country.

When purchasing in Canadian Tire locations across Canada, members earn Canadian Tire Money at 10x the normal rate – the equivalent of 4% cash back. There is also a broad network of partner stores that help members earn at the same 10x rate, including Sport Chek, Mark’s, PartSource and more. Everywhere else, these earnings slow to a 2x rate but are not restricted by purchase. This rewards ecosystem helps Canadians simultaneously save and earn on some of their biggest bills.

Other than an advanced rewards rate, a new draw to the Canadian Tire Options MasterCard is a limited time promotion run by the bank, which grants every cardholder the ability to get 0% APR financing on any purchase over $200 from Canadian Tire. With no fees for this financial advantage nor annual membership costs, there are few reasons not to apply for this unique credit card.
Why We Like It:

No Annual Fee: Whereas other rewards cards burden cardholders with fees in the form of an annual membership charge, the Canadian Tire Options MasterCard has the potential to save as much or more than its peer cards, and comes at absolutely no cost. Similar cards charge as much as $60 for just the annual fee, and lack some of the secondary benefits.

Interest-Free Financing: For no fees and a 0% interest rate, cardholders can pay for purchases at Canadian Tire totaling $200 or more in monthly installments, with terms up to two years. For those who are protective of their balance or who need increased cash flow, this limited-time bonus is a great option.

Flexible Canadian Tire Money: Earn with any purchase, anywhere when holding the Canadian Tire Options MasterCard. Aptly named, members with this credit card have many options when it comes to accruing points, but for purchases made at Canadian Tire stores or partner brands, they earn at a significantly increased rate. Ten times the normal pace of accrual equals 4% cash back – a highly competitive offer.

The Value of Rewards: Canadian Tire Money can be spent at the gas pump or at the register in Canadian Tire stores across Canada. A combination of gas and items from the store, such as lifestyle products, food and snacks, could represent a large portion of monthly bills. The Canadian Tire Options MasterCard can help reduce household expenses in a big way.

Customer Service: Canadian Tire representatives are known as some of the most friendly and helpful around, and are all based in the country, so customers know there is a fellow Canadian on the other end of the line. Phone support is available 24/7 for customers with inquiries, comments or concerns.

Protect Your Identity: Cardholders have the choice to pay a bit extra for some identity theft deterrent features, like credit monitoring and added protection when traveling. They can also opt in for life, disability and critical or terminal illness insurance to protect against unforeseen life events that may threaten financial stability.

Is It Worth It?
One of the most relevant factors in determining if the Canadian Tire Options MasterCard is worthwhile for any potential customer, is how often they shop at Canadian Tire. Given the many branches across the country and plethora of products available, there is a good chance that many Canadian citizens may find the card frequently beneficial when it comes to completing day-to-day errands.
For no annual fee, those who incur heavy expenses from Canadian Tire and its partner stores can gain relief in the form of steady savings. For what it is, the card is a strong contender among similar-level rewards cards, and is aimed more towards customers spending heavily on gas. Customers for whom a long commute is a normal occurrence will find a handy companion in the Canadian Tire Options MasterCard.

[button color="red" size="small" link="" target="blank" ]Apply Now![/button]]]>
It’s Not You, It’s Me: The Air Canada-Aeroplan Breakup and How It Affects Aeroplan Members Tue, 30 May 2017 08:51:53 -0400
Ironically it was Air Canada that actually created the Aeroplan program in 1984 in an effort to grow its base of frequent flyers. Initially begun as a flight-oriented rewards program, Aeroplan evolved into a massive rewards behemoth with more than 75 partners representing over 150 different brands, spanning the spectrum of travel, retail and financial industries. In 2002 Aeroplan was sold to Aimia, a marketing and loyalty rewards company based in Montreal. Notable partners include 27 airlines from the Star Alliance network, as well as retailers like Gap, Esso, Chapters, Home Hardware and more. Aeroplan also has partnerships with credit cards, such as TD Bank, CIBC and American Express, that allow cardmembers to gain additional rewards points for purchases. Aeroplan’s affiliation with Star Alliance and the multi-faceted (and continuously expanding) accrual and redemption options played a large part in the program’s success and steady growth, such that today it now has over 5 million members.

Unfortunately for Aimia, Aeroplan’s market share is a major part of its success, which is why the corporation’s stock fell more than 60 percent after the dissolution of its partnership with Air Canada was announced. It should come as no surprise then that Aimia seems the more eager of the two parties to reconcile their differences and salvage the relationship. GreedyRates spoke with Christa Poole, Aimia’s Senior Manager of External Communications, who said, “We continue to believe that a new deal with Air Canada is still the best option for our five million members of Aeroplan, as this has been a very successful partnership over the years for our members, pairing one of the best global airlines with one of the world’s leading loyalty providers.”

As to Air Canada’s side of the story, in a classic it’s-not-you-it’s-me move, the Canadian air travel giant has avoided making a statement about any concrete issues it took with Aimia’s running of Aeroplan. Rather, Air Canada indicated that it wishes to widen the reach of its rewards program and take on an even larger share of the loyalty rewards market. Air Canada says that the new rewards program (which has yet to be named) "…will offer additional earning and redemption opportunities, more personalized service and a better digital experience for Air Canada customers."
What Does the Split Mean for Aeroplan Members?
According to both Air Canada and Aimia, the Aeroplan-Air Canada partnership will continue to operate as normal until June 2020. Furthermore, Air Canada notes that Aeroplan miles accrued before June 2020 will be redeemable for Air Canada flights after the breakup date, though the miles themselves will not be transferable to Air Canada’s newfangled rewards program.

For its part, Aimia is dealing with the split by emphasizing Aeroplan’s non-flight related rewards, like retail and hotel partners. “In addition to flights, Aeroplan members redeemed more than 700,000 non-air rewards last year, through more than 1,000 specialty, merchandise, hotel, car rental and experiential rewards. Since launching the merchandise, hotel, car rental and experiential rewards in 2004, more than 144 billion Aeroplan Miles have been redeemed for non-air rewards.” Aimia also noted in an email to members that, “We know how much you care about this program, and we're working to secure great new redemption options for you after June 2020.”

Some of our whip-smart and slightly sarcastic GreedyRates readers emailed us noting the irony of Aeroplan’s name in light of the Air Canada breakup. When asked if Aeroplan is considering a rebranding, Poole responded with a one-word, “No.”
Should You Stay or Should You Go?
Until the dust settles and Air Canada’s new rewards program is more fully fleshed out, it’s difficult to know whether it will be worth staying with Aeroplan. Certainly, if you’re not a frequent flyer and find that you often redeem your Aeroplan points for things like hotels, rental cars and merchandise, you may well decide to stick with Aeroplan.

If, however, you’re an avid traveler and always redeemed your Aeroplan miles for free flights, it might be a good idea to start investigating new rewards programs now rather than wait to see how Aeroplan will adapt and what Air Canada will eventually offer. Here’s a brief overview of some frequent flyer-friendly cards that are worth considering.
Scotiabank Gold American Express
This is one of our favorite travel rewards cards as it has the most generous reward categories in Canada. Cardholders earn 4x Scotia Rewards points for every $1 spent on gas, groceries, dining and entertainment. You earn 1x points on all other purchases. Presently the card is offering a generous sign-up bonus of 30,000 points (worth $300), with no annual fee in the first year when you spend $750 in the first three months. There’s also a bevy of other travel-oriented perks like airport lounge access, travel insurance and concierge service. Click here for the full review
American Express Gold Rewards Card
This card is one of Canada’s unsung reward-earning heroes. It offers new cardmembers a bonus of 25,000 Membership Rewards when you charge $1,500 in your first 3 months. You’ll also earn 2x points for every $1 in eligible purchases. It offers awesome flexibility with the ability to transfer your points to other frequent flyer programs like Aeroplan or Avios. The card is also waiving its annual $150 fee for the first year. Click here for the full review
Rogers Platinum Mastercard
Even if you’re not a Rogers customer, this card packs a lot of punch with the country’s best cashback rate of 1.75% in all categories. Not only is Rogers waiving the fee in the first year, but it’s also offering a cashback bonus of $25 when you make your first purchase within the first 90 days. All that cash back could add up to a nice bundle for an upcoming vacation, and frequent travelers will really appreciate the 4% cash back you receive on purchases made in foreign currency. Click here for the full review
RBC Visa Infinite Avion
This card nets 1 point per $1 spent on any general purchase and 1.25 points per $1 spent on travel. You’ll also receive a welcome bonus of 15,000 points which can be redeemed for travel on any airline with no blackout dates. For the yearly fee of $120 you also receive additional benefits like trip cancellation insurance, emergency medical insurance and purchase protection. Click here for more details on the RBC Visa Infinite Avion card
CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite
Enjoy a welcome package of 15,000 bonus points (worth $300) when you make your first purchase. You’ll earn 2 points per $1 when you purchase travel through the CIBC Rewards Centre portal and 1.5 points for every $1 you spend on gas, groceries and at drug stores. All other purchases earn you 1 point per dollar. You can use your points to book travel on any airline with no blackout dates. The annual $150 fee is waived in the first year.
Last but definitely not least – The WestJet RBC World Elite Mastercard
Another favorite among globetrotters is the WestJet RBC World Elite Mastercard. Signing up currently earns 250 WestJet dollars, with no minimum spending requirement. The card earns 2% in WestJet dollars when used to buy WestJet flights or WestJet Vacations packages, and earns 1.5% in WestJet dollars for all other purchases. For the annual fee of $99, you also get your first checked bag at no cost. Where this card really shines is if you have friends or family who love to travel, as cardholders receive an annual companion voucher to wherever WestJet flies. Click here for the full review
Final Thoughts
Whether or not you decide to look for a new rewards program, it’s certain that in the meantime, much like parents competing for a child’s affections after a divorce, Aimia will work hard to retain members’ loyalty with the promise of bigger and better rewards. As Poole notes, “What’s important for us is that our members will continue to be at the centre of our program. We know flight rewards are a member favorite. We’re committed to preserving a high value redemption proposition for Aeroplan members, including travel and flight rewards with industry leaders. We are hopeful for our members to be able to redeem for flight rewards on Air Canada and other airlines long past 2020 and we look forward to providing more details at the earliest possible time.”]]>
Face Off: Nordstrom Canadian Visa Card vs. American Express Gold Rewards Card vs. Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite Cash Back Card Thu, 25 May 2017 08:57:43 -0400 Nordstrom Canadian VISA Card Benefits
You might be thinking if you are already a member of the Nordstrom Rewards program, the VISA card is not necessary. But this isn't the case at all. In fact, Nordstrom cardholders have a lot more benefits. While both members can convert 2,000 points into $20 bonus notes, here are some of the benefits that cardholders enjoy while Canadians who are simply part of the Rewards program do not.

Reward Members earn one point per dollar spent at any Nordstrom Canada store. This is true regardless of how you pay for your purchase (meaning purchases paid for in cash or non-Nordstrom credit cards help you accrue points). Conversely, Nordstrom Rewards cardholders earn twice that much (two points per dollar spent) in any Nordstrom or Nordstrom Rack store in the US or Canada,,, Trunk Club, and HauteLook whenever they use their card.

Using your Visa card anywhere else will award 1 point per dollar spent. Additionally, Canadian cardholders gain other benefits such as:

A $20 bonus note upon first purchase with their cards at participating locations
Early access to anniversary sale items
Exclusive bonus point events
Triple Points day throughout the year (up to four per year)
Other random points days that reward cardholders with up to ten times the normal amount of points awarded
Alteration reimbursements
Competitively low APR rates
Roadside assistance and travel insurance

*Cardholders should bear in mind that points earned as a Nordstrom Rewards Member cannot be combined with Nordstrom Canadian VISA Card points.
Nordstrom Canadian VISA Card Drawbacks
Of course, the Nordstrom Canadian Visa card isn’t flawless. The drawbacks to this card include:

Notes expire one year after date of issuance. This isn't a huge drawback though since cardholders can easily spend the notes online before they expire.
There are no in-store discounts on additional purchases as is the case with many retail credit cards.

Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite Cash Back Card Benefits
Next, we'll discuss the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite cash back card. This is one of the top cash back cards Canadians can own. It offers .4% back on gas and groceries, 2% on pharmaceuticals and frequent bills, and 1% on anything else. Scotia is easily the best cash back card on offer, and Canadians who shop anywhere will benefit greatly from things like:

Annual waiver of first year’s fee
Highest cash back rate of all Canadian credit cards for gas and groceries category
Access to Visa Infinite Enhancements
Discount on car rentals from Avis

Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite Cash Back Card Drawbacks
There aren’t many, but the drawbacks of the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite cash back card are:

The earn rate is capped at $25,000, at which point all purchases earn 1%
The necessary income level is a little high, and you need an excellent credit score rating
Interest rates climb high if you aren’t on top of payments

American Express Gold Rewards Card Benefits
American Express has many credit cards on offer, but the Gold Rewards card is a relative unknown in comparison to some of the more publicly recognized options. According to the stats, however, this is one card not to be missed. It offers tremendous benefits to Canadian cardholders with one of the biggest signup bonuses around, an annual fee waiver for first time users, and a solid earn rate for purchases, making it one of the most lucrative Aeroplan cards available to date. Here is a closer look:

Earn 25,000 points just for signing up (enough for a cross country flight within the US)
Earn 2 points per dollar spent
Book flights on any airline around the world
Upgrades in hotels and airfare
Annual airline credit
Choose from a wide range of airline loyalty programs to cash out points

American Express Gold Rewards Card Drawbacks
The American Express Gold Rewards card is limited in that it has:

High annual fee after the first year’s waiver
Not internationally accepted

The Nordstrom Canadian VISA card is a great option for those who enjoy this retail chain. There are no annual fees, several stores, and the benefits are spread across Canada, the US, and even online. Additionally, with a $20 gift note, this card offers Canadians one of the most impressive signup bonuses (percentage-wise) around. Finally, the debit card option makes Nordstrom’s Visa something unique, manageable, and smart for shoppers in the area.

The Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite cash back card is the best cash back credit card on offer to Canadian citizens, with 4% back and an annual fee waiver for the first year. Since this isn’t a cash back card, Nordstrom isn’t in direct competition of the Scotia card, and with no annual fees, there’s nothing to hold you back from keeping both cards in your wallet.

Finally, the American Express Gold Rewards card has the largest signup bonus of any of this type on offer to Canadians. Cardholders earn either $250 in cash or a free return flight with the 1:1 trade off in Aeroplan miles. Like the Scotia card, the annual fee waiver is a nice touch, and the double point earnings in the widest range of categories puts the American Express Gold Rewards card at the top of the list. For frequent flyers, it’s a great choice.]]>
May 2017 Roundup: Hot New Offers & An Update (Tangerine's) Tue, 16 May 2017 15:51:54 -0400 Tangerine MasterCard: Still a Solid Choice
The Tangerine cashback card came onto the scene with a real splash, offering no annual fees, unlimited cashback, 2% on two categories of your choice (three if you have your cash back earnings deposited into a Tangerine Savings Account) and 1% on all other categories. With not even a year under its belt, Tangerine has changed its policy, making some Canadians reconsider their choice. Although the 2% cashback on three selected categories remains intact, all other categories will have a 0.5% cashback reward instead. Additionally, the card is raising its foreign transaction fee from 1.5% to 2.5%.

Granted, the bait and switch isn’t good business practice, but the Tangerine credit card is still one of the best on offer in Canada today. With no fees, it literally doesn’t cost you a thing to keep the card in your wallet. For the promo categories, 2% is a great deal, and there’s still unlimited cashback, an advantage most credit cards won’t provide. So even with the changes made, the Tangerine money-back credit card is still a competitive choice for shoppers.
Scotiabank: Continuing Its Reputation for Excellence
Scotiabank has plenty of cards on offer including the Scotiabank Momentum MasterCard, which is still one of the most popular options among the Canadian public to date. A few changes among Scotiabank cards worth noting include: 

Scotiabank®* Gold American Express® Card is actually raising the signup bonus from 25,000 points to 30,000. That’s a tremendous offer worth $300 (instead of $250), so travelers can really take advantage of this upgrade.

The Scotia Momentum® VISA Infinite card’s signup bonus is being changed. Instead of giving 5% cashback for the first three months and an introductory 1.99% on balance transfers for the first six months, now cardholders simply get to waive the annual fee for the first year.
Scotiabank®* American Express® Card is extending the annual fee waiver of $39 to July 31st from April 30th.

Bottom line, Scotiabank is looking for ways to keep customers happy, and Canadian cardholders should make the most out of these offers.
The American Express NEW SimplyCash™ Preferred: More Cash Back
The American Express cashback card continues to live up to its name. While the annual fee is being raised from $79 to $99, the 5% cash back granted for the first six months is now being extended to ALL purchases. Additionally, the cash back offer has no category limitations, so you can get rewards points for purchases on anything like grocery, gas, dining, pharmaceutical, and more. In case that wasn’t enough for the American Express SimplyCash™ Preferred card, the $100K cap on cashback rewards has been lifted, so now Canadians can earn 2% cash back after the six months with no cap.
Canadian Tire Options® MasterCard®: Plenty of Options
Canadian Tire MasterCard is a relatively new face to GreedyRates, but it's looking like it may become an attractive option for Canadian cardholders. CTFS is the financial service arm of the Canadian Tire retail chain that recently began its foray into the credit card market.

The Options card is currently the most benefit-laden CTFS card, but the financial institution also offers other Canadian Tire credit cards including their well-known Gas Advantage® MasterCard® and Cash Advantage® MasterCard®. Here’s a quick breakdown of the three:

Canadian Tire Options MasterCard®: Easily the fastest and best way to collect Canadian Tire Money, the Canadian Tire Options MasterCard® has a lot to offer. Cardholders can earn up to 4% (or 10x) at participating Canadian Tire stores, Mark’s branches, Sport Chek locations, and Driver’s Academy. There’s also a unique multiplier for purchases at the Canadian Tire Gas Bars. Best of all, you will receive 2x reward points on all other purchases made with this card. Canadian Tire Points are good for purchases at any Canadian Tire store, and members will receive bonuses and exclusive offers just for signing up. Tech-ready consumers will appreciate the web app for faster payment, along with Apple Pay compatibility that lets you pay anywhere you go for contactless and headache-free purchasing.
Gas Advantage® MasterCard®: This CTFS card offers a tiered discount system based on your previous month’s spending. Canadians can earn up to $.10 off per litre of gas, a big benefit considering the rising petrol prices. Discounts are used for gasoline/diesel purchases at all Canadian Tire Gas Bars. Rewards are accrued by making purchases at any Canadian Tire Stores, online, or Mark’s. All purchases will be doubled during the promotional period. There is a $500 cap on the highest level of discount per litre, though and after $500, your discount is lowered to $.02/litre. Another benefit to this card is that there’s no annual fee, and CTFS offers financing plans for in-store purchases.
Cash Advantage® MasterCard®: The Cash Advantage card really makes an inviting offer. Now cardholders can get up to 1.5% cash back on all purchases anywhere and a whopping 3% cash back at Canadian Tire stores. How much you earn depends on the extent of your purchases and your annual credit balance/record. The 3% cashback offer is good for all Canadian Tire stores (online, in person, or catalogue purchases), as well as Canadian Gas Bars and Mark's purchases. As with their other cards, the Canadian Tire Cash Advantage® MasterCard® has no annual fees and an easy online signup process.

It’s a great month to go shopping, so grab one of these reward-rich credit cards and start earning points today.]]>
When It Comes to Credit Cards, One Bank Isn’t Enough – Canadian Banks in Review Sun, 07 May 2017 15:57:22 -0400
These days, banks and credit cards are commonly mentioned in the same breath, and many know that a bank is only as good as its best card. Besides providing customers with a way to access and easily use their funds – whether at home or across the world – the best credit cards now come with a plethora of bonuses and benefits meant to bring extra value to the cardholder.

Here we consider the best banks in Canada, and the cards their customers love. There will be a few familiar names, but also some unique nominees that may surprise. Whether for travel bonuses, cash back or another enticing bonus category, all the best Canadian banks and their credit cards are here to square off.

Keep in mind, the best bank in Canada is tough to qualify, so this list does not put them in any particular order. You can quickly navigate to your bank of choice by clicking on any of the following names:

RBC Royal Bank
Rogers Bank
BMO Bank of Montreal
National Bank of Canada
PC Financial
Canadian Tire Bank
TD Canada Trust Bank


Scotiabank brings an array of unique credit cards to the table, many of which do not stick to a single bonus niche but rather add value in multiple ways. They are the third largest bank in Canada, and one of the best, rising quickly through the ranks in recent years by constantly releasing innovative and exciting offers, much like the card mentioned below. 
Scotiabank’s Best Credit Card:
The Scotiabank Gold American Express Card
Combining a worthwhile instant bonus and point accrual rate, this double-edged card is a strong addition to any wallet. For no annual fee and an instant travel credit of $250, it saves hundreds right from signup. However, its strengths are in its everyday use: even before customers spend $750 in the first three months and receive their lump-sum credit, points accrue at a rate of 4 per $1 spent on gas, groceries, dining and even entertainment. Then, these expenses can be paid off with the very same points!

30,000 Scotia rewards points (offer expires July 31, 2017)
First year annual fee waived
4% earn rate on gas, groceries, dining, and entertainment
Pay off purchases with points

Click here to apply for the Scotiabank Gold American Express Card

RBC Royal Bank

The Royal Bank of Canada, or RBC, is the largest financial establishment in the country. They place a high importance on community, and this value reveals itself in many of their offerings. One of the quality products that has become a first choice amongst RBC clientele with families is the one covered below. 
RBC’s Best Credit Card: The WestJet RBC World Elite MasterCard
MasterCard and WestJet have teamed up with the Royal Bank of Canada to produce one of the most useful travel tools we have encountered - the World Elite credit card. Many of the hassles and obstacles inherent in traveling with family are addressed by this feature-heavy card, including the extremely valuable annual companion flight voucher. This lets cardholders purchase a round-trip companion flight ticket for just $99 to anywhere within North America. Other excellent benefits are an immediate $250 travel voucher (useable with the same companion flight!) and a free checked bag for the primary cardholder and up to eight companions. This alone has the potential to save up to $240 in baggage fees, assuming it costs $30 per bag. The addition of travel medical insurance for the family wraps up one of the best credit card deals seen lately in Canada.

$250 travel voucher
$99 companion flight voucher
Free travel medical insurance
Free checked bag for you and up to 8 companions

Rogers Bank

A relatively new player on the scene, Rogers was founded in 2013 and quickly became a popular domestic bank for Canadian citizens. Like other banks, it offers rewards cards with appealing bonuses, but their best offering suits those customers who do business internationally. 
Rogers Bank’s Best Credit Card:
The Rogers™ Platinum MasterCard® 
This unique cash back card is a true powerhouse when used by prolific shoppers, which is one reason why it has garnered the number one spot on our list. The other reasons concern the magnitude of the bonuses provided, including a competitive 1.75% cash back on all purchases made in Canadian dollars. The better bonus, however, is a remarkable 4% unlimited cash back on all purchases made in a foreign currency. This could mean travel expenses from your business trip or your latest online shopping spree. On top of exemption from the first year’s annual fee, there are few reasons not to apply for this great card.

$54 in instant savings ($29 annual fee waiver, $25 first purchase bonus)
75% cash back on purchases in CAD
4% cash back on purchases in foreign currencies

Click here to apply for the Rogers™ Platinum MasterCard®

BMO Bank of Montreal

Like many banks, BMO understands that technology and new innovations are driving their industry in a different direction, and they have decided to go with the flow. An institution that puts special focus on the personal side of a digital world, much of what BMO offers is aimed at the next generation. 
BMO’s Best Credit Card: The BMO SPC MasterCard
The credit card we have chosen as BMO’s best may not be as exclusive as its peers, but a unique combination of easy approval and great bonuses provides those who may be getting their first card a taste of what bigger competitors offer. Targeted primarily at students, there is no minimum annual income or annual fee, giving young cardholders access to a line of credit for virtually nothing. It also grants 10-15% off at hundreds of retailers across Canada (on top of existing student discounts that they may offer), plus one of two other benefits chosen at the cardholder’s discretion. They can either receive a $60 welcome bonus and 1% cash back or a welcome bonus of 500 Air Miles with no additional fees.

No minimum income
No annual fee
Save 10-15% in eligible retailers
Get 1% cash back and $60 or no fees and 500 Air Miles

Click here to apply for the BMO SPC MasterCard

National Bank of Canada

Headquartered in Montreal, the National Bank of Canada serves millions of Canadians in a socially responsible and beneficial manner. The great bonuses featured on many of their cards focus on protecting customer to the utmost, and it so happens that the card we have chosen as their best is cut from the same cloth. 
National Bank of Canada’s Best Credit Card: The National Bank World Elite MasterCard
Providing peace of mind for cardholders is the modus operandi of this powerful piece of plastic. Customers enjoy a two-pronged bonus that entails a high earnings rate on points and almost every kind of insurance under the sun. Those who travel abroad with their families will appreciate the airtight protection brought by the National Bank World Elite MasterCard, which provides free out-of-province medical and hospital insurance, trip cancellation, trip interruption, flight delay, baggage insurance and even insurance on a rental vehicle. Moreover, customers earn points at an impressive rate of 2.5 per $1 spent alongside a rebate worth $250.

5 points per $1 spent
$250 rebate on travel fees
Travel medical insurance
Trip and flight protection
Rental vehicle coverage

Click here to apply for the National Bank World Elite MasterCard

PC Financial

PC, or President’s Choice bank, is brought to customers by Loblaw Companies, a giant in the Canadian food and pharmacy industries. Accordingly, rewards offered by PC credit cards are firmly cemented in these sectors, but are handed out at a much better rate than the competition. One of the best examples is the number one PC Financial card that we have included on this list. 
PC Financial’s Best Credit Card:
The PC Financial World Elite MasterCard
The sheer amount of rewards accrued for using this great credit card puts it leagues ahead of the competition, specifically on some of the biggest monthly bills of any household. Customers who shop at eligible grocery stores such as Loblaw or Shopper’s Mart get 3% of their purchases back as rewards points, which can then be used to pay for groceries right at the checkout counter. Cardholders also receive a 3% earn rate on eligible travel purchases, 3 cents back per litre at eligible gas stations and 1% back on everything else. Besides the fact that almost all purchases enjoy these rewards, free travel medical and car rental insurance seals the deal – especially considering that there is no annual fee!

No annual fee
00% back at Loblaw and Shopper’s Drug Marts
00% back on eligible travel purchases
3 cents per litre at eligible gas stations
00% back on all other purchases
Pay grocery bills directly with points
Free travel medical, car rental insurance and more

Click here to apply for the PC Financial World Elite MasterCard

Canadian Tire Bank

Operated by the Canadian Tire retailer, one of the biggest and most commonly found franchises in Canada, rewards from Canadian Tire cards are redeemable for the daily life necessities of most customers. They say that no Canadian lives further than 15 minutes from a Canadian Tire, so you do not have far to look when searching for a way to spend those points. 
Canadian Tire Bank’s Best Credit Card:
The Canadian Tire Options MasterCard
Remarkable for its high rate of bonus accrual, customers who use this MasterCard at their local Canadian Tire earn Canadian Tire ‘Money’ at a significant 10x rate every day. They also collect these rewards points elsewhere at a lower rate, redeemable for purchases at any Canadian Tire franchise in the country. The many locations and wide range of products sold at Canadian Tire makes this bonus ecosystem highly valuable for its members, who can purchase automotive, sports, leisure, home, toys and food products with their points (and earn at the same time). The integral function that Canadian Tire serves in providing for many Canadian families, plus the bonus program that is designed to save hundreds or thousands of dollars each year, makes the Canadian Tire Options MasterCard a perfect addition to any family’s financial toolset.

Earn 10x rewards points at Canadian Tire every day
Collect rewards points elsewhere as well
Redeem points for a wide range of necessities
No annual fee

Click here to apply for the Canadian Tire Options MasterCard

TD Canada Trust Bank

TD Canada Trust is a customer-focused bank headquartered in Toronto that provides financial services to thousands of small businesses and individuals across the country. It has become a trusted name among customers who enjoy its plethora of credit cards with advantageous travel benefits. 
TD Canada Trust’s Best Card:
The TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite Credit Card
The TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite is designed for those who love to travel, and accordingly it brings a healthy number of relevant bonuses. These include a healthy introductory bonus of 30,000 Aeroplan miles: the first 15,000 just for making a single purchase (it could be a pack of gum), then 10,000 for keeping an account in good standing and 5,000 for authorizing a second user. Alongside the $120 rebate on the annual fee (offer expired on May 16th, 2017), the immediate savings brought to customers who fly, whether for business or pleasure, are immense. Do note, however, that a prospective customer with a weaker credit score may not be eligible.

30,000 bonus Aeroplan miles
Extensive travel insurance
1.5 miles per $1 spent on gas and groceries

Click here to apply for the TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite credit card]]>
Transfer a Balance and Get Cash Back with the SimplyCash Preferred Card from American Express Sun, 30 Apr 2017 15:24:53 -0400 Get a head start on paying your balance and receive cash back in the process with the SimplyCash Preferred card from American Express. This double-edged bonus of 5% cash back and an interest rate of 1.99% gives customers who are transferring a balance from one card to another an extra boost to pay off their bills.

[button color="red" size="small" link="" ]Apply Now![/button]

The SimplyCash Preferred At a Glance

5% cash back in the first 6 months
1.99% interest rate for 6 months on balance transfers
2% cash back after welcome rate ends, no limits
$99 annual fee

Why We Like It

5% Cash Back Bonus: For the first 6 months after the card’s activation, the customer will enjoy an impressive 5% cashback on purchases, up to a maximum value of $300. This means that cardholders who spend $6,000 a month for the first six months will get the cash back on every dollar.
Competitive Post-Bonus Cash Back: After the initial bonus period of six months, customers receive 2% cash back for the life of their account, applicable with absolutely no limits on spending.
Balance Transfer Bonus: Approved applicants who transfer their balance from one card to the American Express SimplyCash Preferred card pay only 1.99% interest for 6 months after activation. This bonus allows for a maximum of $7,500 or 50% of the customer’s existing credit limit to be transferred and paid off monthly at a near-zero rate, saving hundreds of dollars in interest payments.

Extra Benefits of the SimplyCash Preferred Card from American Express
American Express offers customers some truly advantageous benefits on top of the already great balance transfer and cash back rates. One that stuck out was the refer-a-friend bonus, which rewards customers with up to $3,000 for referring friends to sign up for the same valuable card. A cash payment of $200 for each referral is a nice incentive to get others the same benefits that you enjoy.

If you apply for and receive another American Express card after the SimplyCash Preferred card, you are qualified for an exemption from any annual fees as well, potentially saving hundreds of dollars for those who need supplementary cards for themselves or family.

These additional features also apply:

American Express Front of the Line Service: Special invites, e-updates, a reservation system and advanced access to some of the best shows and events.

Insurance against damage and theft of a rental car
Travel accident insurance value of $100,000
Foreign medical insurance
Theft of baggage and lost item insurance

For Shoppers:

Products that are bought with the American Express SimplyCash card have their manufacturer’s warranty doubled, extending protection for expensive purchases.
Insurance against theft or accidental damage on eligible new purchases made with the card.

For those who want an advantage when paying off their balance and need a reason to keep the card once they have repaid their outstanding amounts, the American Express SimplyCash Preferred card is especially suitable. An initial 6 months of beneficial bonuses on balance transfers, a competitive cash back rate with no limits, plus an array of nice features courtesy of American Express make this card very worthwhile for many individuals with outstanding credit card balances.

[button color="red" size="small" link="" ]Apply Now![/button]]]>
The Best Business Credit Cards in Canada Thu, 20 Apr 2017 13:36:46 -0400
No matter how you run your business, the best business credit card grants the benefits you will find most valuable – whether in the form of rental car and airport lounge access for frequent travelers, cash back for those with large expenses, or low interest rates for protecting the bottom line. Take a glance at the list below to discover which of Canada’s best business credit cards can contribute the most to your livelihood.
For Small Businesses
Small businesses are particularly sensitive to fluctuating markets, and small business owners need a card they can rely on during challenging times. While a small business is usually an on-site endeavor, flexible travel benefits are much appreciated for time spent on the road, and the ability to accrue points for use on business expenses is an absolute must. Accordingly, there is one clear winner among the best small business credit cards in Canada.

[highlight]Winner[/highlight]: American Express® Business Gold Rewards Card

The American Express Business Gold credit card awards an impressive 30,000 points as a welcome bonus to those who spend $5,000 within the first three months of ownership – an easy hurdle to jump for most businesses that have expenses and overhead. The generous
welcome bonus is worth $300, but the best part is that it can be used to pay the same costs that generated the points in the first place.

Additionally, the beneficial ‘Your 3 Suppliers’ program awards points at double the standard rate of 1 per $1 spent when buying from any of the three suppliers specified to American Express beforehand. This powerful bonus allows business owners to accrue points at a boosted rate when paying for the vital supplies that keep the company afloat, and to pay off those purchases with the points themselves.

For no annual fee, the American Express® Business Gold card also comes with some useful travel benefits as well. The ability to transfer points to some of the most popular frequent flier programs helps reduce travel costs, and the many protections afforded to travelers make it a worthy companion on the road.

No annual fee
30,000-point welcome bonus
Use points to pay business expenses
Double bonus rate at your key suppliers
Travel insurance on baggage and flight delays, stolen items, accidents and emergencies, etc.
Use points with loyalty programs and frequent flier clubs
Quarterly and annual reporting simplify financial reporting

Click here to apply for the American Express® Business Gold Rewards Card

Runner Up: BMO Commercial MasterCard

Consolidate business expenses from purchasing, travel, entertainment and more into one program
Choose your reward: 1% cash back, air miles, low annual fee, US dollar compatibility, or nonprofit benefits
Purchase protection and extended warranty
Centralized data and reporting on expenditures in all areas of a business

Click here to apply for the BMO Commercial MasterCard
For Travel
Not all businesses are brick and mortar. Many high-flying businessmen and women are just that: flying - or traveling in general. Whether it is a big discount on a rental car, access to an exclusive airport lounge, or use of bonus points on frequent flier programs, travel-centric credit cards save money and pamper their owners at the same time.

While traveler bonuses are one of the more common rewards systems in place over a wide array of issuers and cards, it’s easy to spot the best of the bunch.

[highlight]Winner[/highlight]: The Business Platinum Card® from American Express®

With a strong focus on the convenience necessary for a smooth trip, the American Express Platinum Business card lets those who hold it travel in comfort and style. One of the main draws is free access to airport lounges in over 600 destinations around the world, as well as service from a personal concierge team that can arrange delivery and pickup of packages for you on the go. 

Additionally, members who spend at least $5,000 within the first three months of ownership get a massive 40,000-point bonus automatically. These points can be spent on business expenses, travel, gifts from the lofty first tier of the Membership Rewards program, and other eligible purchases with no limit. Points accrue at a favorable 1.25 point-per-dollar rate and can be transferred to many popular frequent flier and hotel groups.

The benefits covered by the Gold AmEx card like flight, travel, and baggage insurance are doubled, and Premium cardholders also get emergency medical coverage, phone access to an emergency physician 24/7, trip interruption and cancellation insurance, and the option to deduct the annual fee from your tax bill.

40,000-point welcome bonus
25 points per $1 spent
Worldwide airport lounge access
Dedicated concierge assistance
Points transferable to frequent flier and hotel programs
Thorough travel protection features

Click here to apply for the Business Platinum Card® from American Express

Runner Up: BMO Gold AIR MILES MasterCard for Business

1,000 bonus miles after initial purchase
1 mile per $10 spent in the first three months
1 mile per $15 spent after introductory rate
Easily and inexpensively add employee cards
Automatic rebates when purchasing from eligible merchants

Click here to apply for the BMO Gold AIR MILES MasterCard for Business
For Low Interest Rates
At the end of the day, the bottom line is critical to any business’s health. Protect the longevity of your company by receiving a discount on the amount you pay in interest on the business credit card. Owners who carry a balance from month to month will gravitate toward cards that grant the lowest interest rates possible. After all, saving money is a simple, yet powerful proposition.

When searching for the best card that has low interest rates, look not only at the rate you can attain, but also the extra bonuses that can make an appearance in certain cases.

[highlight]Winner[/highlight]: RBC Visa CreditLine for Small Business

With an interest rate of prime plus anywhere from 0.9% to 6.9%, customers who want to bring cut-and-dry financial benefits to their business are in luck. As of April 2017, the prime rate in Canada is just 2.7%, meaning rates with the RBC CreditLine Visa card run from 3.6% to 9.6% maximum. 

The card provides a valuable line of credit, doesn’t punish business for taking advantage of it, and comes with a rewards program as well. Employers can use the points that accrue - 1 point per $2 spent - on gift cards, merchandise and other gifts from the RBC catalog to incentivize employees.

Besides a competitive interest rate, rewards points can be spent on travel using the handy booking tool right from the RBC rewards site. While other cards can offer similarly low interest rates to business owners, RBC goes above and beyond with their extra features.

Rates as low as prime + 0.9% (3.6%)
Flexible line of credit for your business
Accrue rewards points at a rate of 1 per $2 spent
Use points on gifts, travel rewards, and other incentives

Click here to apply for the RBC Visa CreditLine for Small Business

Runner Up: BMO Preferred Rate MasterCard for Business

5% interest rate
$0 annual fee
Pay $25 and enjoy a 12.9% yearly rate instead
Add employee cards for just $5

Click here to apply for the BMO Preferred Rate MasterCard for Business
For Cash Back

[highlight]Winner[/highlight]: BMO Premium Cash Back MasterCard for Business

The exemption from an annual fee provides customers an immediate cash savings of $69, and for 6 months after activation, BMO Premium Cash Back MasterCard cardholders get an impressive 2% cash back on all their purchases. Additionally, 3% cash back on all purchases made at Shell stations, National Car Rental or Alamo Rent a Car branches across the country is a hefty bonus on what is sure to be one of the biggest monthly expenses. 

Though it is aimed for business travelers who find themselves on the road often, the BMO Premium Cash Back Business card can benefit anyone with free coverage from the BMO Roadside Assistance program.

Another noteworthy bonus is access to up to 25% off at the same National and Alamo car rental agencies that customers already get 3% cash back from. These well-thought-out features and solid terms make the BMO Premium Cash Back MasterCard for Business the clear choice for those who want the most worthwhile cash back credit card in Canada.

$0 annual fee
2% cash back for the first 6 months
1% cash back afterwards
3% cash back at Shell stations, Alamo or National rental car agencies
Free BMO roadside assistance

Click here to apply for BMO Premium Cash Back MasterCard for Business

Runner Up: National Bank Platinum MasterCard Business Card

5 points for every $1 spent on all purchases
Up to 2.5% off purchases made at any Ultramar location
Link a commercial account and enjoy overdraft protection
Platinum business insurance from Blue Cross
Enjoy zero liability with MasterCard

Click here to apply for National Bank's Platinum MasterCard Business Card
The best Canadian business credit card is not a single elusive option – there are several choices available for customers of varying needs. Before settling on a business credit card, decide which bonuses are most relevant to how your business operates.

Is frequent travel a necessity? If so, a card that awards flier miles, hotel stays or airport lounge access may be best. Is the bottom line your most important consideration? Then perhaps you should go with whichever card offers the lowest rates or awards the biggest cash back bonus. The decision is ultimately subjective, but any of the winning cards on the list above present very strong options.]]>
Best Credit Card Tips for April 2017 Sun, 02 Apr 2017 14:07:25 -0400
When it comes to cashing in on credit cards rewards systems, timing is everything. Using the wrong card for the right purchase won’t give you the benefits you could receive if you were playing the system properly. If you want to make the most of your credit card rewards points programs, check out these top credit card tips for April. You'll be glad you did.
Tip #1: Look for Signup Bonuses
The majority of credit cards today will offer a sizable signup bonus, so don’t skip this freebie. Depending on the terms and conditions of the specific credit card deal, you can use the bonus in various ways during this month. For example, the TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite card offers a tremendous 30,000 bonus points, 15,000 upon your first purchase, 10,000 more after 90 days, and another 5,000 for an additional authorized user. Those points can be used for flights, taxes, and surcharges to more than 1,300 locations around the world. This offer ends in May though, so get on it now.
Tip #2: Don’t Pay for the First Year
Waving the first year’s annual fee is becoming a common practice, especially among the best points credit cards out there. Card holders should take advantage of this deal, and use their credit cards wisely. If you are systematic about it, you can theoretically get away with never paying an annual fee. Simply switch from one great credit card deal that offers no annual fee for the first year to the next, so you never have to deal with those pesky yearly charges. Rogers™ Platinum MasterCard® is an example of a card that waives that first year’s annual fee.
Tip #3: Get Travel Benefits
If you’re planning on taking a holiday this month, be sure to cash in on your rewards points. While vacations can be quite pricey, credit card plans can help you save quite a lot on your travels. Look for cards that have affiliate programs with airlines, hotels, and car rentals so you can trade in points for tickets, free nights, and rentals. While abroad, use credit cards with no foreign transaction fees or no currency exchange fees like the Marriott Rewards® Premier Visa® Card to save that expense as well.
Tip #4: Think About the Future
While spending now, don’t forget to consider the future. When purchasing new home decor, travel expenses, or even daily items, use credit cards with low interest rates to cut down on the extra burden of a large debt to pay off later. MBNA TrueLine MasterCard® credit card and American Express Essential Credit Card are some of the best low interest credit cards you’ll find. MBNA TrueLine MasterCard® credit card also has no annual fees, an additional saving, while the American Express Essential Credit Card allows cardholders to pay out their debt either gradually or all at once.

Playing the credit card circuit is not difficult once you know the tricks. No matter who you are or what your financial situation, you can get a good deal on a card and benefit from the many rewards programs available. There are even credit cards for people with bad credit, so don’t be discouraged by a low credit score. Find out your options today.]]>
5 Tips On Travel Hacking - What You Need to Know to Hack it Tue, 28 Mar 2017 15:54:21 -0400
What is travel hacking anyway? It’s a modern term for getting the most out of your travels, be it through finding online discounts, coupons for cheaper flights, or using miles to make purchases while you’re abroad.
Travel Hack #1: Look for Bonus Points Packages That Count
Some credit cards offer fabulous deals for purchases, anniversaries, and other occasions throughout the year. The more benefits that come with the package, the more you’ll save when traveling. A great example of this is the Marriott Rewards® Premier Visa® Card. This credit card offers 30,000 bonus points after your first purchase on the card. These points can be traded for travel benefits such as four free nights in a hotel abroad, no foreign currency exchange fees, and 5 points for every dollar spent at Marriott locations. That’s a good deal!

Finally, look for cards that are specifically travel-friendly. The Rogers™ Platinum MasterCard® has a unique 4% unlimited cashback rewards policy for any purchases made in a foreign currency, so this is the ideal card for traveling. Now that you know how to hack a credit card, it’s time to make use of that knowledge. Enjoy your spring as a smarter, more hack-savvy traveler thanks to these simple travel hacks.
Travel Hack #2: Get Your Flight Paid For
Flights can be a large portion of your travel expenses, so finding a travel hack for this high-ticket item can save you a lot on your overall holiday. Many companies will allow you to transfer your credit card reward points into frequent flyer miles and pay for your flights via this method.  The American Express® Gold Rewards Card allows this in programs such as Avios and Aeroplan®. Oh, and be sure to find those No Annual Fee cards (Amex Gold Rewards again) just to sweeten your deal even more by saving approx. $100 a year.
Travel Hack #3: Pay Attention
The number one lesson in travel hacking 101 is keep your eye on the ball. Credit card companies, airlines, gas stations, etc. want to make money off of you. They’ll offer incentives to reel you in, but those deals won’t last long. You need to pay attention to what deals are being offered, end dates, redemption expiration dates, and the fine print to know when to stay put and when it’s time to move on to another credit card with better fringe benefits.
Travel Hack #4: Don’t Skip Insurance
Not having travel insurance can actually cost you a lot more in the event that something goes wrong. Fortunately, lots of great credit cards have travel insurance benefits tied into their packages. TD® Aeroplan® Visa Infinite* Card, for example, includes a variety of travel insurance packages so you can really sit back, relax, and just enjoy the ride.
Travel Hack #5: Go for the Points
While nearly all cards today will offer some sort of points system each time you make a purchase, not all credit cards were created equal, and some are significantly more lucrative than others. Look for a card that will simply reward you for spending handsomely. MBNA Rewards World Elite® will reward travelers with 2 points for every dollar they spend, making your purchases twice as sweet.
Bonus Tip: Rinse, Wash, Repeat
A major contributor to a successful travel hack is your ability to own more than one credit card at a time, and earn more points redeemable for miles and other perks. Did you know you can sign up for the American Express Gold Rewards card, get a 25,000 welcome bonus points, and convert them to Aeroplan® Miles? That’s right! Your next step should be signing up for the TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite card and getting their 30,000 Aeroplan points. Now you have 55,000 points that are equivalent to two round-trips to the States! Don’t forget: the more travel reward cards you own - the more free flights and hotel nights you earn.

Now that you know how to hack a credit card, it’s time to make use of that knowledge. Enjoy your spring as a smarter, more hack-savvy traveler thanks to these simple travel hacks. For more on travel hacking, see our complete list of the best travel credit cards.]]>
Canada is Maxed Out, But Credit Cards are Decreasing Wed, 15 Mar 2017 14:35:10 -0400
Reward Programs to Foster Loyalty
According to the analysts, higher debt with fewer cards in circulation translates to people signing up for fewer credit cards, but actually using the ones they already have more frequently. This closing in of financial outlets could be seen as a positive turn for consumers. With customers signing up for fewer cards, companies will need to increase incentives to keep their customers from switching to a competitor with better benefits.

With higher spending producing greater balances on fewer cards, credit limits are breaking new heights as well. TransUnion a credit card monitoring agency in Canada, suspects that limits will continue to rise as brand loyalty increases.
Are Demographics Painting a Skewed Picture?
Before credit card companies start reorganizing their entire business model, however, a few things should be noted: The data is slightly unbalanced due to the difference in demographics. Millennials, for example, have a tendency to use debit cards more often than credit. The older generation, on the other hand, appreciates the benefits of card loyalty schemes, and therefore utilizes these plans more often. Still, more benefits such as air miles or vouchers are helpful for the industry and an obvious incentive for people to sign up or use those cards.
Maintaining Financial Responsibilities Throughout This Flux
Of course, just because you can spend more doesn’t mean you should. As always, consumers should keep their spending habits within a reasonable budget and not exceed their means simply because the credit limit allows it.

This is particularly true considering the fact that the studies have shown that consumers who pay at least the minimum monthly payment (if not more) have a greater likelihood of staying away from delinquency (like late fees). Overall delinquency rates had a slight increase, while non-mortgage rates actually decreased. Generally speaking, this was a good year for consumer credit according to the Insider Insights report.

Still carrying debt you would like erased for practically nothing? Check out Canada's best balance transfer credit card!]]>
Top Credit Cards for Bad Credit In Canada - Unsecured & Secured Credit Card Options Mon, 06 Mar 2017 09:03:59 -0500
Canadians can now choose from a host of different types of credit cards to help them establish, re-establish or repair their credit histories and credit scores. Whether you're looking for an unsecured, guaranteed approval, or secured credit card, there's an option that's best for you.

With the credit cards below, you can enjoy all the benefits of having a credit card, even if you have no credit history, or have had credit problems in the past. These credit cards for bad credit will help you rebuild or establish a strong credit rating, while giving you the convenience and security of a credit card - make purchases online or over the phone and book travel reservations easily and securely.
Top Credit Cards For Bad Credit
Top No Annual Fee Secured Credit Card For Bad Credit In Canada:
Home Trust Secured Visa No Annual Fee
[caption id="attachment_7117" align="alignright" width="125"] Click Here To Apply[/caption]

A no annual fee secured credit card requires a security deposit but does not charge an annual fee. Your credit limit is then set at the amount of the deposit. You can put down as little as $500, or as much as $25,000, depending on the card.  If you decide to cancel your secured card, you can just pay off your outstanding balance, and you'll get your security deposit back. Because the card is secured, almost everybody is approved. The only downside for some, is that it does require a bank account.

Why It’s a Winner: The Home Trust Secured Visa, is a great option for those not approved for an unsecured credit card, looking to re-build or establish credit through a secured credit card but don't want to pay an annual fee.

While it does require a minimum deposit of $500, you are guaranteed to get approved. Once approved, you can start to use it like any other credit card, and Home Trust will report your payments to both Equifax and TransUnion, helping you re-establish your credit.

It does come with a 19.99% interest rate, (but you shouldn't be carrying a balance on a secured credit card anyways). Also, if you have any large purchases you need to make on the card, you can deposit as much as $10,000, which should give you all the flexibility to have a large enough credit line for big ticket purchases.
Top Low Interest Secured Credit Card For Bad Credit In Canada:
Peoples Trust Secured Credit Card
[caption id="" align="alignright" width="125"] Click Here To Apply[/caption]

Even though this is a secured credit card, some people still may carry a balance from time to time, and if you do, a low interest option is critical to keeping down your borrowing costs.

Why It’s a Winner: The People's Trust secured credit card offers a low interest rate of 12.99% on balances, two percentage lower than the next best secured credit card.

What also makes this card unique among it's peers, is that you can create a security deposit as low as $500 to as high as $25,000. That's the highest deposit allowed in Canada, to our knowledge, giving you the baility to create a $25,000 line of credit and all the flexibility to spend on big ticket items to meet your individual needs.

This card is ideal if you have had credit problems and want to rebuild your credit rating, have no credit history and want to establish a good credit rating or are a discharged bankrupt.

Just be careful with the low interest rate. If you intend on carrying a balance, you're probably better off not getting the card and using the money that you would have used for your deposit to pay for your service - interest free.

You will need a bank account to be able to apply for this secured credit card.
Top Unsecured Credit Card For Bad Credit In Canada:
The Affirm MasterCard® Credit Card

IMPORTANT NOTICE! Affirm Financial Services has temporarily suspended issuing new credit cards. This is the message showing on their website:
"As we continue to find progressive ways to support the credit needs of Canadians, Affirm Financial Services has temporarily suspended issuing new credit cards, loans and all credit limit increases.

We are working hard to ensure that we bring you the credit products you need as soon as we can. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you.

Existing Affirm Mastercard customers may continue to use the card in accordance with the terms of the cardholder agreement."

An unsecured credit card for bad credit is a card designed for those with impaired credit. However, because it is unsecured, you won't have to put any deposit or security against the card, and you're not required to have a bank account. It's a great alternative if you've been turned down for a credit card by the banks.

The advantages of an unsecured credit card are: 1. You get a true line of credit, without having to give a security deposit. 2. Your credit history gets reported to the credit bureaus. 3. It allows you to build or re-build your credit, even if you had difficulties in the past or present - even consumer proposal or bankruptcy.

Why It’s a Winner: The Affirm MasterCard is our top ranked credit card for bad credit, because it stands alone in Canada as the only unsecured credit card for bad credit with absolutely no security deposit required. It's a great opportunity for those who have declared bankruptcy or have been or are in consumer proposal, offering unsecured credit lines as high as $3,000.

It comes with an interest rate of 29.99% for homeowners and 34.99% for non-homeowners, comparable to a store credit card, and much lower than a pay day loan. But remember, you shouldn't be carrying a balance anyways. The idea here is for you to use good credit habits and pay down your credit card bill every month, not just the minimum payment, on time - use automatic payments if you can't trust yourself. Pay down your balance every month and the interest rate is irrelevant.

It does come with an annual fee of $84 per year, charged at $7 per month. Reasonable for the risk the bank is taking, and when you consider many secured credit cards also come with an annual fee. Once you've re-established your credit, you can apply for a no fee credit card, and avoid the annual fee altogether.

Affirm reports to both credit bureaus, Equifax and TransUnion, with every payment. Not all lenders do this. As a result, the Affirm MasterCard will help you build a positive track record of payment performance, and improve your credit history and score as quickly as possible.

READ THIS TO GET APPROVED: To help you get approved for this card, if you've declared bankruptcy or been in consumer proposal you should have a FICO greater than 500. If not, your FICO should be greater than 600. Your annual income should be at least $10,000. You should not have a payday loan inquiry. Nor should you have a major derogatory like a delinquency, or judgement in the last 6 months.
Summary of Best Bad Credit, Credit Cards In Canada

Credit Card
Target Audience

Home Trust Secured Visa
No credit history, Rebuilding credit

Peoples Trust Secured Credit Card
No credit history, Rebuilding credit

Affirm MasterCard Credit Card
Rebuilding credit, Bankrupt, Consumer Proposal

Strategies To Get Credit Cards for Bad Credit
Get An Unsecured Credit Card If Possible
We really recommend that you first try to get approved for an unsecured card. The application process is simpler, you won't have the risk of losing your security deposit and you won't tie up your money in a security deposit either.

Don't apply for every credit card under the sun - doing so will further lower your credit score. If you're in bankruptcy, consumer proposal, just emerged or even on a debt repayment plan, an unsecured card specifically for bad credit might be the best alternative you have. If you've already been declined by the banks, it may be the only chance you have for an unsecured credit card.
Get A Secured Credit Card But Don't Pay A Fee, And Don't Keep It Forever
If you can't qualify for an unsecured credit card for bad credit, and you want to get on the path of re-building your credit - and have access to the convenience of MasterCard and Visa, then a secured card might make sense. We would recommend getting one without an annual fee - why pay a fee when you don't have to?

Secondly, once you re-established your credit to the point that you qualify for an unsecured card, get one, and then cancel your secured credit card.

And remember, make all of your payments on time. In fact, you should set-up all your credit cards for pre-authorized payments, so you're never late - The Golden Rule of responsible credit card usage!

TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite Credit Card Review Mon, 06 Mar 2017 01:30:34 -0500
Best Travel Credit Cards in Canada for 2017
Best Aeroplan Sign-up Bonuses
Aeroplan Credit Cards Comparison

Looking for that elusive 30,000 mile credit card sign-up bonus? We found it. Trying to figure out how to get that premium travel rewards credit card without an annual fee (invalid as of May 16, 2017)? Here it is.
TD's Aeroplan Visa Infinite credit card is still Canada's most popular travel card with one of the hottest sign-up offers in Canada today - 30,000 miles (15,000 miles with your first purchase, 10,000 miles when you keep your Account open, active and in good standing for 90 days, 5,000 miles when you add an authorized user) all with no minimum spend requirement and no annual fee in the first year - the promotion you've been waiting for!
25,000 Aeroplan miles alone will get you a return economy class flight anywhere within North America, (taxes and fees not included). The savings from the first year annual fee rebate are worth an additional $120. The only cost to getting the free flight is putting one purchase on the card to meet the activation requirement - it could be a pack of gum. TD's paying you a whole bunch of money to apply for the card - take advantage.
This offer expired on May 16, 2017. 

TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite Benefits
Aeroplan miles are worth between 1.27 cents and 2.19 cents (based on a sampling of 15 flights that GreedyRates performed). You will get 1.5 points per dollar spent on gas, grocery, drugstore and Air purchases and 1 point everywhere else, giving you between 1.27% and 3.28% in value per dollar spent on your credit card.  
When looking at the Aeroplan flight redemption chart, the 25,000 point sign-up bonus offer (plus 5,000 if you add an authorized user) is enough to get a return fare ticket that will take you to destinations anywhere within continental North America on an economy fare. 15,000 points is good enough for a return short-haul flight to anywhere in North America.
Here are some of the additional perks that help this card stand-out from the pack:
1) Free checked bag when travelling on an Aeroplan flight rewards operated by Air Canada
2) Priority Check-in when travelling on an Aeroplan flight reward operated by Air Canada
3) Priority Boarding when travelling on an Aeroplan flight reward operated by Air Canada
4) Annual Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge One-Time Guest Pass when travelling on an Aeroplan flight operated by Air Canada
5) Miles will not expire as long as you are a TD Aeroplan Cardholder
6) Comprehensive travel insurances including travel medical, trip cancellation interruption, auto rental collision loss, purchase security and extended warranty
7) 1.5 points per $1 spent on gas, grocery and drugstore purchases
8) 1.5 points per $1 spent on purchases  1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
9) Earn miles twice when you pay with your TD AeroplanVisa Infinite Card and use your Aeroplan Membership Card at over 150 retail partners
Worth It?
With the sign-up bonus now at up to 30,000 points with no annual fee in the first year, the sign-up bonus alone is worth it. All you have to do is take the time to apply and you're getting a free ticket. With no annual fee, and no minimum spend requirement, the sign-up bonus is essentially free. You'll receive a Welcome Bonus of 15,000 Aeroplan Miles with your first purchase and 10,000 Aeroplan Miles if keep your Account open and in good standing 90 days after account approval. Plus, you'll get an additional 5,000 miles if you add an authorized user.
The TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite card's perks can add up to a lot more than the $120 fee (which isn't charged in the first year of this offer invalid as of May 16, 2017), making the card a worthy travelling companion in its own right. For example, the first free checked bag is worth $25 (each way), the free Maple Leaf Lounge access pass is worth $50, and the complimentary insurances alone can be worth over $400 per year and more.
You will need to either have a minimum personal income of $60,000 or a minimum household income of $100,000 to be eligible for the card. If you don't, TD will make the Aeroplan Platinum card available to you.
Better Offers?
To our knowledge, this is the best Aeroplan credit card offer in Canada right now. In fact, this offer isn't even available inside TD branches right now or on its website. With this offer, available at only, you can essentially fly free, just for getting approved, and spending what you would have spent otherwise - there is no minimum spend requirement! (Invalid as of May 16, 2017)
If you have a better offer, feel free to share, but as for now, we think this is the best Aeroplan credit card offer in the Canadian marketplace today. (Invalid as of May 16, 2017)
For other great offers on travel bonuses:

Best Travel Credit Cards in Canada for 2017
Best Aeroplan Sign-up Bonuses
Aeroplan Credit Cards Comparison
The Best Aeroplan Credit Card Sign-Up Bonuses - Fly Free now! Mon, 06 Mar 2017 00:05:42 -0500
We've assembled the Best Aeroplan credit card sign-up bonuses currently available in the Canadian marketplace. Getting a new Aeroplan credit card with a juicy sign-up bonus offer is the best and cheapest way to add to your collection of Aeroplan points. Even if you already have an Aeroplan credit card, why spend $25,000 over 1-2 years to get 25,000 points, when all you have to do is sign-up for a new card from a different issuer!
Best Aeroplan Credit Card Sign-Up Bonuses
Credit Cards          Sign-Up  Bonus           Minimum Spend           Annual Fee            Min Income       

 40,000 Miles                     $3,000 in 3 Months                 $499                          $40K                   Get This Offer              

 25,000 Miles                    $1,500 in 3 Months            No fee 1 Yr/$150 after    $20K               Get This Offer              Note: Transfer Amex Gold points to Aeroplan 1:1 for free
 15,000 Miles                     $1,500 in 3 Months                   $120                             $20K                  Get This Offer

 55,000 Miles                       First Purchase                         $399                            $200K               Get This Offer

 30,000 Miles                      First Purchase                     $120                        $60K                    Get This Offer

From our perspective, the best Aeroplan credit card sign-up bonus right now is the American Express Gold Rewards Credit Card (transfer points to Aeroplan miles 1:1 for free) with no annual fee in the first year and a 25,000 Aeroplan Mile sign-up bonus.

You get Amex's 25,000 miles if you spend $1,500 in the first 3 months. TD's 30,000 miles has no minimum spend requirement (15,000 miles on activation, plus another 10,000 miles when you keep your account open and in good standing for 90 days, plus an additional 5,000 miles if you add an authorized user).

If you already have an Aeroplan credit card, signing-up for another Aeroplan credit card is the easiest, fastest and cheapest way to get an additional 25,000 miles free! You also keep your Aeroplan miles, even if you cancel your credit card. Why wouldn't you go through the minimal effort to apply for another card?

With either card, you juice your Aeroplan account with free miles, plus there's an annual fee rebate for the first year! It's a risk free way to get 25,000 miles, enough for free return airfare to anywhere in North America, including travelling from Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver or Calgary to New York, Miami, Arizona or California!

Aside from the high sign-up bonus, the Amex Gold Rewards card also offers 2 points per dollar spent on gas, groceries, pharmacy travel, and 1 point everywhere else, making it the best way to accumulate Aeroplan points in Canada. By comparison, both the TD and CIBC Aeroplan Visa Infinite cards only offer 1.5 points per dollar spent on gas, groceries, pharmacy and 1 point everywhere else (including travel). The Amex Gold Rewards card has the added advantage that you can keep your points within Amex and use them to fly any airline, with no seat restrictions, any time, or transfer them to Aeroplan - cost-free - at your convenience.

Several factors will help you identify the best Aeroplan credit card sign-up bonus offer for you:

1. Size of the bonus: There are plenty of Aeroplan sign-up bonuses for 15,000 points, but you should always wait until you get at least 25,000. That may mean you have to wait for a special offer. Just be patient it's worth it. Think about it, the difference between 25,000 and 15,000 bonus points is around $10,000 in credit card spend...for most that's a lot of time and money.

2. Attainable welcome bonus: Some bonus offers give 15,000 points with no minimum spend required. Others offer a 25,000 point bonus with a minimum spend of $500 within the first 3 months. Whatever it is, make sure the minimum spend and the time-frame required to achieve the threshold are easily attainable given your budget.

3. Annual fee waiver: Many of the best Aeroplan credit card bonus offers also have a first year annual fee waiver. With no annual fee in the first year, the issuer is begging you to try out their card risk free. The good news is, with no annual fee in the first year, the sign-up bonus is absolutely free - at the end of the year you can decide to cancel your card or not, but the Aeroplan points will remain yours.

4. Transferability: Many Canadians only look at Aeroplan branded credit cards and miss out on a number of other rewards cards that exchange points with Aeroplan 1:1. We love those hybrid cards because they give cardholders the flexibility to take advantage of other huge sign-up bonuses, sometimes 25,000 points or more, and then transfer those points to their Aeroplan account free. Applying for multiple Aeroplan sign-up bonuses from different issuers is a great strategy to quickly ramp up your point balance.
Summary of Best Aeroplan Credit Card Offers:

Credit Card

Welcome Bonus

Annual Fee

Min Income

Apply Online

American Express Aeroplan Platinum

40,000 miles



Get This Offer

American Express Gold Rewards

25,000 miles

1st year free, $150 thereafter


Get This Offer

TD Aeroplan Infinite Visa

30,000 miles



Get This Offer

TD Aeroplan Privilege

55,000 miles



Get This Offer

American Express Aeroplan

25,000 miles



Get This Offer

Regardless of your choice, it's never been easier to milk Aeroplan rewards out of the system than it is right now. Take advantage while the good times last. You can compare Aeroplan credit cards in even greater depth with our travel rewards comparison tool, if you want even more detail.]]>
Best Travel Credit Card Rankings in Canada For 2017 Mon, 06 Mar 2017 00:03:58 -0500
To help us derive our rankings for the best travel credit card, we first measured the value per point of each rewards program. We checked how many points were required to fly on 15 different flights for each credit card and compared it to the lowest price of each flight, giving us the true cost per point of each rewards program. We did a similar exercise for hotels.

We then evaluated earn rates, credit card bonuses, annual fees, perks, insurance coverage, foreign transaction fees, ease of redemption, and travel opportunities to determine the best travel credit card in Canada for each travel card category.

Here's the summary of the top ranked travel credit cards in Canada, full credit card reviews are below:
Best Travel Credit Card Rankings for Canada 2017

Best Flexible Travel Credit Card Winner:

Winner: The American Express® Gold Rewards Card
Runner-Up: RBC Visa Infinite Avion

Best Airline Travel Credit Card Winner:

Winner: TD® Aeroplan® Visa Infinite* Card
Runner-Up: WestJet World Elite MasterCard

Best "Book Anything, Anytime, Anywhere" Travel Credit Card Winner:

Winner: MBNA Rewards World Elite® 
Runner-Up: Capital One Aspire Travel World Elite MasterCard®

Best Foreign Transaction Travel Credit Card Winner: 

Winner: Rogers™ Platinum Mastercard®
Runner-Up: The Marriott Rewards® Premier Visa® Credit Card From Chase

Best Insurance Travel Credit Card Winner:

Winner: Desjardins Visa Odyssey Gold
Runner-Up: National Bank World Elite MasterCard

Best Hotel Travel Credit Card Winner: 

Winner: Marriott Rewards® Premier Visa® Card
Runner-Up: Starwood Preferred Guest Card

A description of each travel card category and a full review of each of the top ranked Canadian travel credit cards are as follows:
Best Flexible Travel Credit Card In Canada:
The American Express® Gold Rewards Card
[caption id="attachment_303" align="alignright" width="125"] Click Here to Apply[/caption]

A flexible travel credit card allows you to make any travel related purchase on your card, then call or go online to pay for it with your points, allowing you to benefit from the best deals or options you can find. Some even allow you to convert your points into an alternative frequent flyer program.

Why It's a Winner: The American Express Gold Rewards card is special because of its phenomenal rewards value and its unparalleled flexibility.  Earn a welcome bonus of 25,000 Membership Rewards points (redeem for $250 against any travel or transfer to Aeroplan 1:1 for 25,000 Aeroplan miles) and get the first year annual fee waived - a value of $150 - making the card virtually free to try for a year and the welcome bonus free as well.
Ongoing value is strong. Earn double points on gas, grocery, drugstore all travel related expenses (air, water, rail and road transport, lodging and tour operator sales). Each Amex point is worth 1 cent. As a result, the base rewards rate is worth 1% and the bonus rewards rate is worth 2%. If you transfer your points to Aeroplan, the base rewards rate is worth 1.28% and 2.56% on bonus categories, which is stellar. The insurance package is phenomenal.
What makes this card the gold standard of flexibility in Canada however, is that you can book any travel related purchase (flight, cruise, train, hotel, or rental car) on the card, and then use your points to pay ANY of the travel expenses that show up on your statement, including taxes fees. You can ALSO choose to transfer your Membership Rewards points to Aeroplan or British Airways AVIOS points 1:1 with no additional charges - secretly making this the most valuable Aeroplan card on the market. Pair this card with the TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite card below and you'll have 50,000 bonus points to start - without even paying an annual fee!
The Amex Gold Rewards card beats RBC's Visa Infinite Avion card for four reasons. First, it has a higher sign-up bonus. Second, Amex waives the first year annual fee. Third, you can earn double points on travel expenses (in addition to gas groceries). Fourth, Amex allows you to redeem for any travel expense on your statement at full value, while if you redeem with RBC's Payback with Points feature, you'll get closer to half a penny per point.
In the end, Amex gives the cardholder additional flexibility to take advantage of promotions and cost saving opportunities in both the Aeroplan and Avios programs, without sacrificing any value if you decide to redeem for any travel purchase.

Runner Up: RBC Visa Infinite Avion Card

Best Airline Travel Credit Card In Canada:
TD® Aeroplan® Visa Infinite Card

An airline travel card puts miles directly into your airline frequent flyer account. Airline credit cards have their perks – waived bag fees, lounge access, priority boarding check-in, and so on – while a more general travel credit card might offer higher earning potential and greater flexibility.

Why It's a Winner: If you're looking to top-up, or start-off your Aeroplan mile bank, this is a great opportunity. There's currently an excellent welcome bonus of up to 30,000 miles, with no annual fee in the first year, and no minimum spend required! Earn 15,000 Aeroplan miles with your first purchase, 10,000 miles when you keep your account open and in good standing for 90 days, and an additional 5,000 miles if you add an authorized user .  25,000 points will allow you to fly return to any city in North America from any Canadian city.  15,000 points allows you to fly return to any short-haul destination in North America. To top it off, TD is offering a first year annual fee rebate, a value of $120, making the card free to try and the welcome bonus a hefty bargain.
Our study found each Aeroplan mile to be valued between 1.28 cents per mile when redeeming for economy fare to 2.2 cents for business class - a strong rewards rate, despite the recent devaluation when redeeming for business and first class fares on certain routes. We like the point acceleration opportunities offered by the card, including 1.5 points per dollar spent at gas, grocery drug stores (at 1.28-2.2 cents per mile, it give you a 1.92% to 3.3% earn rate) and the additional opportunities to double dip at Aeroplan partners to further accelerate point accumulation.
TD offers a very rich set of perks on the card. It has a robust set of insurance protection, including travel medical, trip cancellation, trip interruption, trip delay, baggage and auto rental. Other perks we like include priority check-in and boarding, free lounge access, and one-free checked bag on Aeroplan redemption flights, which can save you $52.50 per return ticket.
The TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite card beats the West Jet World Elite MasterCard for three reasons. First, you can redeem your points to fly to more destinations with Air Canada and Star Alliance than with West Jet. Second, there are more opportunities to earn points and to double dip at Aeroplan partners. Third, you can use your points to upgrade to business and first class.

Runner Up: WestJet World Elite MasterCard

Best "Book Anything, Anytime, Anywhere" Travel Credit Card In Canada:
MBNA Rewards World Elite® 
[caption id="attachment_5087" align="alignright" width="125"] Click Here To Apply[/caption]

A "Book Anything, Anytime, Anywhere" travel credit card allows you to redeem for any travel related expense on your credit card. You purchase travel on your card from any travel provider (airline, hotel, cruise, resort, theme park, car rental, etc...) then call or go online to redeem your points for the travel purchase.

Why It's a Winner: The MBNA Rewards World Elite card is simple, convenient and rich. Get a $100 welcome bonus, upon your first purchase (no minimum spend required) and a 2% earn rate on everything. Best of all, you can redeem your cash credit for anything on your credit card bill - including travel.
The MBNA Rewards World Elite card offers 2 points per dollar spent on ALL purchases, which translates to a 2% earn rate on all spend (earn $2 in rewards for every $100 in purchases). There are no caps or limits to how much you can earn. That matches the richest flat earn rate in Canada. Nothing beats 2%.
Here's where the MBNA Rewards World Elite is unique. You can apply your points against ANY purchase on your credit card statement, not just travel purchases - at full value - including taxes and fees. For example, if you spent $10,000 on your travel card, you will earn $200 in rewards. You can then apply that $200 credit against any item on your statement any time, OR you can have MBNA send you a check or direct deposit the $200 into your checking account (cashback). Pretty nifty.
You can also use your points to redeem for travel in MBNA's travel centre or rewards catalogue, but why would you? We recommend you get the best deal you can find on your own (websavers, Expedia, discount travel, etc...). Use your MBNA Rewards World Elite card to purchase your travel, and then redeem your MBNA cash equivalent points against the purchase. You'll get the cheapest travel deal you can find, booked when you want, with one of the richest redemption rates!
The MBNA Rewards World Elite beat the Capital One Aspire World Elite because, while both offer a 2% earn rate, the Aspire devalues points to a 1.5% earn rate when redeeming for cash or non-travel purchases. MBNA is 2% all the time. Moreover, while the Aspire World Elite has the higher sign-up bonus, it comes with a $150 annual fee (versus $89) and requires $1,000 spend in the first 3 months.

Runner Up: Capital One Aspire Travel World Elite MasterCard®

Best Foreign Transaction Travel Credit Card In Canada:
Rogers™ Platinum Mastercard® 
[caption id="attachment_4387" align="alignright" width="125"] Click Here To Apply[/caption]
Most banks charge a foreign transaction fee of 2.5% on top of the near spot market currency conversion rate charged by Visa or Mastercard. A foreign transaction card charges no fees above the conversion rate, or provides extra rewards to subsidize the rate, meaning you're getting pretty close to the spot rate when using the card to make a purchase in a foreign currency!

Why It's a Winner: While not a travel card per se, the Rogers Platinum Mastercard is one of only 3 credit cards in Canada that subsidize foreign transaction fees. It won the category because it offers 4% cashback on ALL foreign purchases, comes with no annual fee, a 1.75% rewards rate on all other spend you can redeem against any expense - not just Rogers.Although Rogers subsidizes foreign transactions a little differently, it remains the best way to make purchases in a foreign currency. Most credit cards offer 2% or less rewards per dollar spent and charge 2.5% in foreign transaction fees, for a net loss of .5%. Others offer 1% cashback and no foreign transaction fees, for a net gain of 1%. Rogers offers 4% cashback on foreign purchases, with a 2.5% foreign transaction fee, for a net cashback gain of 1.5% - the highest of all. You're making money on each dollar you spend in a foreign currency!
You can redeem your cash rewards as a statement credit once per year, for any balance owing on your credit card, including travel expenses. Alternatively, you can redeem your cash back any time for Rogers, FIDO, or Chatr services or products.
Rogers offers a $25 welcome bonus in cash back rewards when you make your first purchase within 90 days of receiving your card, no annual fee in the first year (savings of $29), and no annual fee ever if you set up your Rogers bill as a pre-authorized payment. This card does not have a very strong travel insurance package. It's best to use abroad or for foreign internet purchases, but not to book your flight, if you want trip cancellation coverage.
The Rogers Platinum Mastercard beats out the Marriott Rewards Visa card for three reasons. First, Rogers comes with a higher net rewards rate on foreign transaction of 1.5% versus 1% for the Marriott card. Second, it comes with a richer rewards rate of 1.75% on all spend, compared to about 1% for Marriott. Third, you can redeem your points as cashback against any expense, including travel, not just Marriott hotels - making it more flexible.

Runner Up: Marriott Rewards® Premier Visa® Card

Best Insurance Travel Credit Card In Canada:
Desjardins Visa Odyssey Gold
[caption id="" align="alignright" width="128"] Click Here To Apply[/caption]

Whether you're a snowbird, jaunt across the border, or go away for the annual family holiday, you can save big money and protect yourself and your savings with free travel insurance included on your credit card. It's convenient, free, and exceptionally valuable.

Why It's a Winner: The Desjardins Visa Odyssey Gold is available to every Canadian. Its inclusive credit card travel insurance is a tour de force that stands head and shoulders above the competition.
First, its travel medical insurance covers you and your family for 60 consecutive days, while out of province or country. Most other travel cards cover you for 15-25 days. Second, it offers travel medical coverage up to the age of 75 ( 60 days for ages up to 59, 31 days for ages between 60-64, and 15 days for ages 65-75)! Third, it covers you for up to $5 million in claims, most cover you between $1M to $2M.
Lastly, while the Odyssey covers you for trip cancellation up to $2,500 per person, if you have an unexpected return home it offers unlimited trip interruption insurance!
Desjardins' Odyssey Gold comes with every major travel insurance coverage you'll need, including out-of-province / out-of-country travel medical insurance, trip cancellation, trip interruption, trip delay, baggage, car rental, travel accident, purchase protection, extended warranty mobile device insurance.
Unfortunately, it comes with a $110 annual fee (pretty reasonable given the coverage), and only gets you a 1% earn rate on your spend. A great card for the coverage itself, but we'd probably recommend using another card to accumulate your rewards.
The Desjardins Odyssey Gold Visa card beats National Bank's World Elite travel card for a few reasons. It offers more coverage to older ages. It offers unlimited trip interruption coverage and it has mobile device insurance, which National Bank does not.

Runner Up: National Bank World Elite MasterCard

Best Hotel Travel Credit Card In Canada:
Marriott Rewards® Premier Visa® Card
[caption id="attachment_1049" align="alignright" width="125"] Click Here to Apply[/caption]
Hotel travel cards put your points directly into your frequent guest program accounts. Cardholders will discover benefits that both cut your travel costs and add another dimension of luxury and convenience to your hotel experience. 

Why It's a Winner: Earn 30,000 bonus points with your first purchase! That's up to 4 free nights, with no minimum spend requirements - and it comes with no annual fee in the first year. Plus, get an additional free nights stay on your account anniversary date EVERY year at a category 1-5 hotel! To top it off, it doesn't charge any foreign transactions fees on purchases outside of Canada. That's a savings of 2.5% on non-Canadian purchases alone.
Not to be overlooked, Marriott Rewards ranks highest among hotel loyalty/rewards programs as ranked by J.D. Powers. Also Marriott Hotel's has recently acquired Delta Hotels Starwood. Their hotels can now be found worldwide with a brand for every price point - Delta, Sheraton, W, AC Hotels by Marriott, Autograph Collection Hotels, Courtyard, Edition, Fairfield Inn, Gaylord Hotels, JW Marriott, Marriott Executive Apartments, Marriott Hotels Resorts, Marriott Vacation Club, Renaissance Hotels, Residence Inn, SpringHill Suites, The Ritz-Carlton and TownePlace Suites.
Marriott has indicated it has no plans to merge the Marriott and SPG credit card programs until at least 2018. However, members can now link their loyalty accounts and transfer points between each program freely. We think that's a great opportunity for Canadians to get both credit cards and merge the bonus points from each. You could end up with 90,000 Marriott Rewards or 30,000 SPG Starpoints by doing so!

Runner Up: Starwood Preferred Guest Card From American Express

Summary of Best Travel Credit Card Rankings in Canada

Welcome Bonus
Annual Fee
Min Income

American Express Gold Rewards
1st Yr Free, $150 thereafter

MBNA Rewards World Elite

Marriott Rewards Visa
1st Yr Free, $120 thereafter

Rogers Platinum MasterCard

Desjardins Visa Odyssey Gold

TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite

Last Leg of The Journey
The best travel credit card for you will depend on your travel needs and spending habits. You'll get the most from your card if you start-off with a great bonus offer, like the rewards program offered by the card, pay your balance in full each month, and consider which fees can best be balanced with bonuses, perks, and rewards.

Canadians are in a great position to try new travel cards that earn them more points, provide more benefits and better flexibility than the card in their wallet today. Take advantage and get more bang for your buck starting now.]]>
Comparing Aeroplan Credit Cards - TD, CIBC, American Express - Which is Best? Mon, 06 Mar 2017 00:01:11 -0500
Below is a quick comparison of the sign-up bonus, annual fee, point accumulation and insurance coverages offered by each Aeroplan credit card currently in the market. Although not officially an Aeroplan credit card, we included the Amex Gold rewards card because you're able to transfer its Amex points 1:1 to Aeroplan, giving cardholders significant flexiblity to book through Aeroplan or Amex at their option.

American Express Gold Rewards
American Express Aeroplan Plus
CIBC Aerogold Infinite
TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite
American Express AeroplanPlus Gold
TD Aeroplan Visa Platinum
TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite Privilege
American Express AeroplanPlus Platinum

Annual Fee
$0 1st Yr   $150 After

Supplementary Card

Signing Bonus Points

Basic Rewards
1 pt : $1
1 pt : $1
1 pt : $1.5
1 pt : $1
1 pt : $1
1 pt : $1
.66 pt : $1
1.25 pt : $1
1.25 pt : $1

Accelerated Rewards
2 pt : $1 (gas, grocery, drugstore travel)
1 pt : $1
1 pt : $1.5
1.5 pt : $1 (gas, grocery, drugstore)
1.5 pt : $1 (gas, grocery, drugstore Air Canada)
1.25 pt : $1 on spend > $10K
1 pt : $1 (gas, grocery, drugstore)
1.5 pt : $1 (gas, grocery, drugstore)
1.5 pt : $1 on spend > $25K

Auto Rental, Travel Accident, Flight Delay, Baggage, Trip Interruption, Out of Province Travel Medical, Hotel/Motel Burglary
Travel Accident
Auto Rental,
Travel Accident
Auto Rental, Travel Accident, Flight Delay, Baggage, Trip Interruption, Out of Province Travel Medical
Auto Rental,
Travel Accident,
Flight Delay,
Trip Interruption
Out of Province Travel Medical
Trip Cancellation

Auto Rental, Travel Accident, Flight Delay, Baggage, Hotel/Motel Burglary
Auto Rental
Auto Rental, Trip Cancellation, Travel Accident,
Flight Delay,
Trip Interruption,
Out of Province Travel Medical

Auto Rental, Trip Cancellation, Travel Accident, Flight Delay, Baggage, Trip Interruption, Out of Province Travel Medical, Hotel Motel Burglary

 Apply Now
 Apply Now
 Apply Now
 Apply Now
 Apply Now
 Apply Now
 Apply Now
 Apply Now
 Apply Now

What the above chart clearly shows, is that the Amex Gold Rewards card (transfer Amex points to Aeroplan 1:1 for free) has the heftiest up-front bonus of 25,000 Aeroplan points among the infinite cards, and is the only one to offer an attractive first year annual fee waiver.

TD's current Aeroplan Infinite offer gives you 15,000 miles on activation, another 10,000 miles if you keep your card open and in good standing for 90 days with no minimum spend is required and an additional 5,000 miles if you add an authorized user. That's a total of 25,000 Aeroplan miles!

We think the combination of a high welcome bonus with no minimum spend requirement and no cost in the first year (at least with the Amex Gold Rewards in the mix) make great opportunities to jump start your Aeroplan miles at virtually no cost. You're getting a round-trip, coach class ticket to anywhere within North America for free. That's a great opportunity. Get both cards and you have two free tickets.

The American Express Gold Rewards card is the richest Aeroplan credit card in Canada. Here's why: Because the American Express Gold Rewards card allows users to transfer its points 1:1 to Aeroplan miles, it effectively offers 2 Aeroplan miles per $1 spent on gas, groceries, drugstore and travel, and 1 point per $1 spent everywhere else. CIBC only offers 1.5 points on gas, groceries and drugstore, which is 25% less than the Gold Rewards earn rate, and they only offer 1 point per $1 spent on travel (TD offers 1.5 points on online Air Canada bookings). The Gold Rewards card gives 2 points per $1 spent on all travel expenses (flights, hotels, cruises, car rental, taxis, etc...), which not only makes it a great travel redemption card, but also a great travel earn card!

The TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite and Amex Gold Rewards cards also offer the highest welcome bonuses of 25,000 points to start, while the CIBC card only offers 15,000 points currently. The Amex Gold Rewards card also waives the first year annual fee, a value of $150, making it virtually risk free to try-out. It also makes the 25,000 point sign-up bonus free. CIBC is now charging the first year annual fee, although they have been making annual fee waiver offers to select applicants. Lastly, with an insurance package that is as good or better than the competition, we think the Amex Gold Rewards Card has the best value among any Aeroplan credit cards currently being offered in Canada.

Aside from the economic value of the Gold Rewards card, what really distinguishes it from the other Aeroplan cards, is that if you can't find the flight you're looking for with Air Canada, you can transfer your Amex points to Avios 1:1, or use them as Amex points for ANY travel expense, making it the most flexible option among the Aeroplan credit cards. CIBC used to allow cardholders to transfer points from Aventura to Aeroplan, but has discontinued that point exchange program unfortunately. We love the flexibility, and with Aeroplan's black-out dates, we think it's a very valuable one.

There are several nice value added features on the TD Aeroplan cards as well: free checked bag, priority check-in, priority boarding and 1 free Maple Lounge pass per year on Aeroplan flights operated by Air Canada. Plus, up to 35% fewer miles needed for Market Fare Flight Rewards as an Aeroplan Distinction member. Also, get faster access to Distinction status, Aeroplan’s recognition program that offers a range of Distinction benefits such as exclusive flight rewards, bonus mile offers and privileges.
Summary of Best Aeroplan Credit Card Offers in Canada

Aeroplan Credit Card
Welcome Bonus
Annual Fee
Min Income

American Express Gold Rewards
25,000 miles
1st year free, $150 thereafter

CIBC Aerogold Infinite
15,000 miles

TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite
30,000 miles

American Express AeroplanPlus Gold
15,000 miles

American Express Aeroplan Platinum
50,000 miles

TD Aeroplan Privilege
65,000 miles

All in all, we think the American Express Gold Rewards Card is the best Aeroplan credit card offer in Canada right now. It comes with a 25,000 mile sign-up bonus and no annual fee in the first year. Given the no annual fee promo, we recommend giving the Amex card a try, and jump starting your Aeroplan Miles with 25,000 points - enough for a round-trip ticket to anywhere in North America!

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Best Low Interest Credit Cards in Canada 2017 Thu, 02 Mar 2017 01:50:34 -0500
We compared all the low interest credit cards in the Canadian market. Some credit cards might offer the same or lower interest rates for a shorter-term promotional period, others for an annual fee, others with risk based APR's, and still others with a variable interest rate that can rise at any point in time.

None beat no annual fee 5.99% fixed rates for new purchases, none beat 0% for 12 month balance transfers, and none beat 0% for 12 month cash advances deposited into your checking account - for everyone who gets approved. None.

With no annual fee and Canada's best interest rates conveniently available in your wallet when you need them, these credit cards are must haves. None of the cards on our list come with an annual fee, so there's no cost to carrying them as sound back-up credit cards as well.
Top Low Interest Credit Cards in Canada
Best Low Interest Credit Card in Canada For Balance Transfers
MBNA Platinum Plus® MasterCard®

If you already have credit card, store card, or line of credit debt, the MBNA Platinum Plus MasterCard will help you cut, consolidate and reduce your debt with Canada's best standing balance transfer offer of 0% for 12 months, with no annual fee.

You can consolidate all of your store cards or credit cards to the MBNA Platinum Plus at 0% for 12 months - one payment, no interest. There is no annual fee on the card, however each transfer comes with a 1% transfer fee, which is low compared to some at 3%.

Alternatively, MBNA will also allow you to transfer cash into your bank account at 0% for 12 months as well. You can then use that 0% money for ANY purpose – same as cash, only MBNA calls it a “transfer of funds to a bank account”. It's essentially a 0% cash advance by another name.
Click here to apply for the MBNA Platinum Plus® MasterCard®  
Best Low Interest Credit Card in Canada For Cash Advances
RBC Cash Back MasterCard

The RBC Cash Back Mastercard comes with no annual fee and has a superb 1.9% interest rate for 10 months on cash advances and balance transfers! That's Canada's lowest rate for cash advances, with the longest term. With no annual fee, it's a no brainer.

Most Canadian credit card cash advances start charging interest from the moment you withdraw funds at rates of 24% or more, plus charge an initial cash advance fee of $5 or more. With the RBC Cash Back MasterCard promotional rate you get cash advances at only 1.9% for the first 10 months of the card, a massive savings.

You can also decide to use the card for balance transfers, at 1.9% for 10 months, with a 0% balance transfer fee. Most other Canadian cards charge a balance transfer fee of 1%-3% up front!

The other nice thing about this card is that if you want to use it for new purchases, you'll get 2% on groceries and 1% on everything else. That said, we'd recommend only using the card for new purchases AFTER you've paid down your cash advance loan.
Click here to apply for the RBC Cash Back MasterCard
Best Low Interest Fixed Rate Credit Card In Canada
American Express EssentialTM Credit Card

This new offer from American Express is the low interest card you want to make new purchases or take out a cash advance with. With no annual fee and an 8.99% fixed interest rate on new purchases cash advances, this card stands out. It’s simple, clean and transparent, the 8.99% rate is what you see and what you get upon approval, regardless of your credit.

No other cards from the big banks offer such a low fixed rate, and it comes with no annual fee. Not RBC, TD, Scotia, CIBC or BMO. Most have low rate cards at 11.99% for purchases and cash advances, with a $29 fee. Many have cards with cash advance rates as high as 24.99%!

With no annual fee, you can keep the American Express Essential credit card in your wallet as a back-up to your rewards card, cost free. It's great if you need to finance a new purchase, access cash or if you want to transfer a balance without having to worry about promotional periods.

The 8.99% interest rate, is the lowest fixed rate in the country. Because it's not a variable rate, there's no risk it will increase on you. Also, if you get approved for the card, you'll get the advertised 8.99% rate - there's no "as low as" trickery, where you apply for one rate, but end up with a higher one.

When you apply, you can also get a 1.99% balance transfer rate for the first 6 months, with a 0% balance transfer fee. Upon expiry of the 6 month promo rate your APR will go to and stay at 8.99% for your transferred balances.
Click here to apply for the American Express EssentialTM Credit Card
Best Low Interest Credit Card in Canada For Purchases
The MBNA TrueLine Credit Card

The MBNA TrueLine credit card, issued by TD, is likely the best low interest credit card in Canada. No credit cards offer the ability to get a lower fixed rate interest than 5.99%, with no annual fee. It's transparent, simple and free. Your rate will be applied to all purchases, balance transfers and access checks!

You'll get a rate between 5.99% 14.99% depending on the strength of your credit - but you'll see your rate before you actually apply - without any impact on your credit. Just fill out the quick form, MBNA will tell you your rate, and then you decide whether you want to continue with the application - it takes two minutes and does not count as a credit inquiry to get your rate.

We’ve reviewed low fixed interest rate offers from RBC, BMO, Scotia, CIBC, TD, VanCity, National Bank and none beat MBNA Trueline's as low as 5.99% fixed annual interest rate with no annual fee, making it our number one ranked fixed low interest credit card in Canada right now. Great no fee, low interest card to keep in your wallet in case you ever have to access a low rate. It's like having a 5.99% unsecured credit line at your disposal.
Click here to apply for the MBNA TrueLine Credit Card
Summary of the Best Low Interest Credit Cards in Canada 2017

Credit Card
Interest Rate
Annual Fee

MBNA Platinum Plus MasterCard
0% for 12 months
Balance Deposit Transfers

RBC Cash Back MasterCard
1.9% for 10 months
Cash Advances Balance Transfers

American Express Essential Card
Fixed Interest Rate Cash Advances

MBNA Trueline
Interest on New Purchases

If you do carry a balance, it makes no sense to chase rewards. You'll be spending close to 20% a year in interest, to save maybe 2% in rewards. Even if you carry the balance for 2 statement periods, it will cost you over 3.5% in compounded interest. The math doesn't work. You're best option, if you know you occasionally don't pay down your entire credit card bill, is to get yourself a no fee, low interest credit card. Just keep it in your wallet for those rainy days, unexpected expenses or need to haves - it costs you nothing, but will save you tons.

For whatever reason, most banks don't offer fixed rates as low as 5.99% to 9.99% with no annual fee. RBC, BMO, CIBC and Scotia offer low interest rate credit cards with rates as low as 11.99%, but they come with $20-$29 annual fees. RBC and TD have low variable rate credit cards of prime plus 4.99% to 8.99% or 1.25% to 12.75%. You don't know if you're going to get a rate of 7.69% or 15.45% before you apply. The problem is, even if you're unhappy with the rate you get, if you were approved, you still have to pay the annual fee!

With many of the new personal loans on the marketplace, while they advertise rates as low as 5.9%, they average more in the 12% range. Furthermore, they require you to send in proof of income and identity verification. Perhaps it's better than going into the branch to apply for a line of credit, but it's certainly not easier than applying for a credit card online.

That's why we love the new American Express Essential credit card. There's no annual fee, making it free to have whether you need it right away or not, and it has an 8.99% fixed rate. You know what you're getting before you apply, and it will never change.

MBNA's 0% for 12 month rate is also unparalleled in the Canadian marketplace. Whether you're looking to transfer your high interest credit card debt or you're looking to access cash at 0%, no other issuers currently offer the same published rate.

Just remember, don't make any new purchases on your balance transfer card - use it for balance transfers exclusively. You'll be paying 22% interest on new purchases, and when you try to pay the higher interest balance down, only a portion of your repayment will go towards your new purchase. The other portion will go towards your existing balance - you don't choose. As a result, you're new higher interest balance will stick until your lower interest balance is completely paid down.

So why use a credit line or personal loan to pay off credit card debt, when you can access 0% rates? It just doesn't make sense. We continue to recommend balance transfers as the optimal strategy to pay off high interest credit cards, store cards or fixed payment loans you may have. No other products offer interest rates as low.

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Top Credit Card Cash Advances in Canada Thu, 02 Mar 2017 00:01:39 -0500
A cash advance is a very convenient way to access funds. Instead of using your credit card to make a purchase, if you need actual cash, you simply withdraw money from your credit card at a bank or an ATM - it's like a line of credit but with the convenience of a credit card.

Credit card cash advances usually get a bad rap because most come with high interest charges of 22% or more and start charging interest from the moment they get funded - there's no interest free grace period, like there is with credit card purchases.

However, not all credit card cash advances come with high interest rates. In fact some will offer cash at cheaper interest rates than your home equity line of credit, some don't charge interest at all! We've scoured the market to reveal the cash advance credit cards with the lowest interest rates in the market.
Top Credit Card Cash Advance Promotions in Canada
1. RBC Cash Back MasterCard

This card offers a special promotional cash advance rate of 1.9% for 10 months, and a charge of $3.50 for each withdrawal. There is no annual fee on the credit card. That means you will only be charged 1.9% interest on cash advances during the first 10 months after your account has been approved.

It is the best pure credit card cash advance promotional offer in Canada right now. It also happens to be a pretty good cash back card (although not the best cash back credit card), offering 2% on groceries and up to 1% everywhere else. But we're here to evaluate it as a cash advance card, and at 1.9% for 10 months, with no annual fee it's a great deal.

Apply Here for the RBC Cash Back MasterCard

2. American Express Essential Credit Card

The American Express Essential Credit Card offers an 8.99% cash advance rate at ALL times with no annual fee. Aside from the best low fixed rate in Canada, what we love about this card is that there is no promotional rate - the 8.99% is always available for new purchases and cash advances.

With no annual fee you can keep the card in your wallet, and then use the card for an unexpected cash advance need whenever required, whether it's a year or two down the line. At 8.99%, the American Express Essential's cash advance is better than most unsecured credit lines!

In fact, the American Express Essential Credit Card  is a low rate card that offers 8.99% on all purchases, cash advances and balance transfers even after the promotional period ends.

Apply Here for the American Express Essential Credit Card

3. MBNA Platinum Plus MasterCard

This is another great opportunity to access cash, offering 0% for 12 months and no annual fee. However, it's not a pure cash advance product. With this offer, once you've been approved for the card, you can ask for a "deposit transfer" and cash will be deposited into your bank account, from your credit card, at the 0% for 12 month promotional rate, with a one time 1% transfer fee.

While not a pure cash advance, it's more like a money transfer into your bank account, it has the same effect. At 0% for 12 months, it comes with the best rate, but it can be a little less convenient than a pure cash advance because it can take 2-5 business days to get funded into your bank account.

Apply Here for the MBNA Platinum Plus MasterCard
Credit Card Cash Advance Rates

Credit Card
Cash Advance Rate
Cash Advance Term
Annual Fee

RBC Cash Back MasterCard
10 months

Amex Essential Card
At all times

MBNA Platinum Plus
12 months

Credit Card Cash Advance Summary
Many financial advisers and money bloggers suggest people stay away from credit card cash advances. The fact is, sometimes we can all find ourselves in a short-term money crunch. The cards above provide the best short-term, low rate cash advance options in Canada.

In fact, we'd argue they're some of the cheapest ways to access cash period. The rates above (0%-1.9%) are certainly better than any unsecured installment loans and are even better than any secured line of credit, let alone unsecured line of credit. The trick is, they're meant to be short term and used sparingly. Keep that in mind and you just found yourself some cheap money.

How Do Canadian Credit Card Offers Compare To Their U.S. Cousins? Mon, 27 Feb 2017 18:50:52 -0500
We compared 4 credit cards, that had both a Canadian and U.S. version. In each case, the U.S. version offered more value to the cardholder.

We're not entirely sure why American credit cards offer more value than their Canadian counterparts. More competition, different banking regulatory environments and different revenue landscapes may be just a few of the reasons we'll explore. But regardless of the reason, it's clear Canadians are getting the short-end of the stick.
How Canadian and American Credit Cards Compare
When comparing Canadian to American credit cards, we thought it made most sense to compare credit cards that had both U.S. and Canadian counterparts. As such, we took a look at the U.S. and Canadian versions of the Costco, Amazon, Marriott and Starwood credit cards. Our comparison found the following:


Canadian Costco (Capital One)
U.S. Costco (Citi)

Costco cashback
Up to 1%

Bonus cashback
2% Gas

3% Restaurants
4% Gas

3% Restaurants Travel

Cashback elsewhere
Up to 1%

The side by side comparison of the Capital One credit card programs in Canada and the U.S. quickly show how much richer the U.S. Costco deal is for Americans. They get more than double the cash back on Costco purchases, double the cash back on gas purchases and they get cashback on travel purchases as well! America takes Gold, Canada Silver.


Canadian Amazon (Chase)
U.S. Amazon (Chase)

Amazon cashback

Bonus cashback
2% Gas, Restaurants, Drugstores

Cashback elsewhere

Special Perk
No Foreign Transaction Fees
No Foreign Transaction Fees

Welcome Bonus
$20 Gift Card
$50 Gift Card

Here we have the same retail partner and the same issuing bank, and the American version blows the Canadian credit card out of the water. Not only are you earning 50% more cashback at Amazon, and getting more than double the welcome bonus, you're also getting 2% cashback in 3 bonus categories!

To add insult to injury, Chase also offers an Amazon Prime credit card to U.S. citizens that gives 5% cash back on Amazon purchases and a $70 gift card!


Canadian Starwood Hotels (American Express)
U.S. Starwood Hotels (American Express)

Welcome Bonus

Annual Fees
1st Year Free, $95 thereafter

Special Perk
No Foreign Transaction Fees

Free In-Room Internet

Here again we have a great apples to apples comparison with the same co-brand partner and credit card issuer in each country. Once again, the U.S. offer beats the Canadian offer hands down. The American welcome bonus is almost double the size, and it comes with a first year annual fee waiver. While the minimum spend requirements are a little larger in the U.S., it should be noted that their welcome bonus, during promotional months can get even higher!

Perhaps the biggest difference of all is in the perks. The American SPG card has no foreign transaction fees, while the Canadian SPG credit card charges 2.5% on foreign transaction fees. Only a handful of Canadian credit cards, offer no foreign transaction fees.


Canadian Marriott Hotels (Chase)
U.S. Marriott Hotels (Chase)

Welcome Bonus

Annual Fees
Free first year, $120 thereafter

This one is actually a little less clear cut. While Chase offers nearly triple the amount of welcome bonus points in the U.S., the Canadian Marriott Rewards credit card waive the first year annual fee. The American version used to do the same, but too many gamers took advantage of the offer. Other than those two differences, both cards seem to be exactly the same.


From our sampling, it seems clear that U.S. credit cards tend to offer cardholders more value than their Canadian counterparts. There could be several reasons that account for the difference.

First, economies of scale. Each U.S. credit card program is significantly larger than their Canadian alternative. As a result, operating expenses per active account tend to be lower, giving U.S. issuers more room to allocate those savings to cardholders.

Second, regulatory environment. U.S. banks may have more lenient capital requirements than their Canadian counterparts, allowing them to lend more profitably. We're not sure this is the case, but it could account for the difference.

Moreover, while many American credit card practices have been curtailed in the last few years, American banks are still able to charge some fees, such as late fees, Canadian banks simply aren't allowed to.

Third, competition. With the size of the prize so much larger in the United States, banks may be willing to outbid one another on lower margin. Although lower margin deals are riskier, the sheer size of the absolute dollars make the deals exceptionally appealing in the U.S.


All said, Canadians should feel especially happy when comparing themselves to the rest of the world. The U.K, European Union and Australia have all but watched their credit card rewards programs vanish, as regulators capped credit card merchant fees. Canadians still enjoy some of the most outstanding credit card products and offers worldwide!

Best Family Travel Credit Cards in Canada Mon, 20 Feb 2017 22:37:16 -0500
The good news is, there are several Canadian credit cards that can make family travel far more affordable and fun!

In selecting our list, we looked for cards that accomplished one or more things. First they reduced the cost of flights or hotel nights. Second, they helped protect the family with the right insurance coverage. Third, they had some type of perk or benefit that made travel more fun for everyone!

1. The RBC WestJet World Elite MasterCard

This is our favourite family travel credit card. It comes with a $250 WestJet Dollar welcome bonus, an annual companion voucher, free checked bags for the primary cardholder and up to 8 travelling companions and travel medical insurance amongst other coverages.

The key to getting the most from this card is for both husband and wife to get the card. Doing so will give each parent a $250 WestJet Dollar welcome bonus, and a return airfare companion voucher for each child. Both the WestJet Dollar welcome bonus and the companion vouchers can be used on the same flights with no black-out dates or travelling restrictions.

If a family of four were to be flying from Toronto to Ft. Lauderdale in peak season, let's say December 26th to January 2, they could save $1,245 in airfare, $200 in checked bags and $75 in travel medical insurance for a total of $1,502 in savings!
Click Here To Apply For The RBC WestJet World Elite MasterCard
2. Aeroplan Credit Cards

The advantage of the Aeroplan program for the travelling family, is that there are multiple Aeroplan credit cards with hefty welcome bonuses both husband and wife can apply for.

25,000 Aeroplan miles will get you free round-trip airfare to anywhere in North America. There are two cards in the marketplace with no annual fee in the first year, the TD Aeroplan Infinite Visa card and the American Express Gold card which allows you to transfer your Amex points to Aeroplan miles 1:1 with no fee. If you and your wife apply for both cards, you'll get 4 round-trip flights for free!

One of the huge benefits of Aeroplan (despite the drawback of its infamous blackout dates), is the ability to book up to 2 stopovers on the same trip! So if you're planning on going on the summer vacation of a lifetime, you can do something like Toronto to Chicago, Chicago to Colorado and Colorado to Los Angeles and back to Toronto, all for the same 25,000 miles per person!
Click Here To Apply For The TD Aeroplan Infinite Visa Card
Click Here To apply For the American Express Gold Rewards Card
3. Marriott Rewards Premier Visa Card

The advantage of the Marriott Rewards Visa card for travelling families is that it comes with 4 free hotel nights, no foreign transaction fees and no annual fee in the first year.

The card's welcome bonus is actually 30,000 Marriott points. Staying at a category 3 Marriott hotel will cost you 15,000 points per night, and on Point Saver nights, it would cost you 10,000 points per night. For example, you could get 2 free nights at the Marriott Courtyard in Orlando Florida.

Again, if you and your spouse both apply for the card, that's 4 free hotel nights in Orlando, with no annual fee!

The other huge benefit of the Marriott Rewards Visa Card, is that it doesn't charge any foreign transaction fees. So you can use the card while travelling outside of Canada and all you'll be charged is Visa's exchange rate, which is pretty close to the spot rate. You won't be charged the typical 2.5% foreign transaction fee most Canadian credit cards charge or the 3% most banks charge when exchanging money at the branch!
Click Here To Apply For The Marriott Rewards Premier Visa Card

There are plenty of credit card options to help reduce the cost of family travel and make the whole experience better for you and the entire family!

When considering the right family travel credit card, don't just look at how many points you need to earn for a free flight. See what other benefits the card offers, because as you can see from the above, perks like companion vouchers, free checked bags and robust insurance can add serious value.

Moreover, take advantage of being married! For most people, you'll never get as much value from a credit card as you will from its sign-up bonus. Why spend $25,000 to earn 25,000 miles, when you can do it just by signing up for a new credit card. If you and your spouse each apply for new cards you can effectively double your points for each rewards program, and get to your destination of choice twice as fast!

Remember, credit card application minimum income requirements usually give you the option to use your personal or household income. That means that even if you're not working, you can use your spouses income to qualify for the minimum spend on your own credit card application. In fact, you can use the income of ANYONE that's living in your household, including parents and children. So get a little creative and start really piling on those miles now!

If you have any additional tips or tricks, share them with the rest of us!