Best Low Interest Credit Cards in Canada

Best Low Interest Credit Cards in Canada for 2023

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Last updated on May 4, 2023 Comments: 94

Let’s face it — sometimes you need or want to carry a balance on your credit card. Maybe you’re financing a big purchase and don’t have a line of credit to tap into, or perhaps you need the cash flow and simply aren’t in the position to pay off your debt right now. If this is the case, then borrowing at the lowest rate possible is the smart move. Luckily, there are credit cards that offer interest rates at about half those of traditional credit cards.

Low interest rate credit cards typically charge from 10-15%, compared to 20%+ for typical cards. Some offer promotional or variable rates while others offer a fixed rate.

If you do tend to carry a balance you may be tempted to use rewards cards but the math simply doesn’t add up — you’ll be spending close to 20% a year in interest to receive, maybe, 2% in rewards. Even if you carry the balance for 2 statement periods, it will cost you over 3.5% in compounded interest. This is why low interest cards are a better option.

We’ve compared all the low interest credit cards in Canada to find the one that’s easiest on your wallet.

Canada’s Best Low Interest Credit Cards

Credit CardPurchase Annual Interest Rate (APR)Annual FeeCard Review
MBNA True Line® Gold Mastercard® credit card8.99%$39Read More
MBNA True Line® Mastercard® credit card12.99%$0Read More
HSBC +Rewards™ Mastercard®11.9%$25 (First Year Rebate)*Read More
BMO Preferred Rate MasterCard®* 13.99%$29
(Waived the first year)*
Read More
CIBC Select Visa* Card 13.99%
(13.99% Cash Advance Annual Interest Rate and 13.99% Balance Transfer Annual Interest Rate)
(First Year Rebate)
Read More
Scotiabank Value® Visa* Card
12.99%$29Read More

† Conditions apply / *Terms and conditions apply

MBNA True Line® Gold Mastercard® credit card

Best Fixed Rate Low Interest Card

Apply Now
Who’s Eligible?
– Minimum Credit Score: Fair-Good
– Minimum Income: N/A
– Age: You must be the age of majority in your home province
– Residency: Canadian

The MBNA True Line Gold Mastercard charges an extremely low annual interest rate of 8.99% on purchases for an annual fee of just $39. That annual interest rate is less than half that charged by traditional credit cards and so makes it the perfect card to use if you’re planning a big purchase that you don’t quite have the cash saved up for. The annual fee is more than justified if you carry a balance.

Let’s say you buy a $5,000 couch and plan to pay it off in 12 months. You’ll pay total interest of $237 plus a $39 annual fee for a total debt cost of $276. But if you put that same couch on a credit card with no annual fee at 19.99% you’ll pay $511 in interest, or 85% more, including the annual fee.

Be careful though — if you’re late on payments twice in a row within 12 months your interest rate will jump to 19.99%.

This credit card is an awesome option for those who want to purchase a big ticket item and don’t quite have the cash saved up.

Key Features:

  • Interest Rate: 8.99% on purchases; 8.99%✪ on balance transfers; 24.99% on cash advance
  • Additional Perks: Buyer’s Assurance; Purchase Protection insurance; Additional 9 authorized users with no additional fee; Discounts on Avis and Budget car rentals
  • Annual Fee: $39

Click here to apply or learn more by reading our complete MBNA True Line® Gold Mastercard® credit card review.

✪, Terms and Conditions apply.

This offer is not available for residents of Quebec. 

Sponsored advertising. MBNA is a division of The Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD) and TD is not responsible for the contents of this site including any editorials or reviews that may appear on this site. For complete information on this MBNA credit card, please click on the “Apply Now” button

The Toronto-Dominion Bank is the issuer of this credit card. MBNA is a division of The Toronto-Dominion Bank. ®MBNA and other-trademarks are the property of The Toronto-Dominion Bank.

MBNA True Line® Mastercard® credit card

Best No Annual Fee Low Interest Card

Apply Now

Who’s Eligible?
>– Recommended Credit Score: Fair-Good
– Minimum Income: N/A
– Age: You must be the age of majority in your home province
– Residency: Canadian (This offer is not available for residents of Quebec)

The MBNA True Line® Mastercard® credit card is the best low interest rate card to keep in your wallet in case of emergencies. Because it charges a low annual interest rate of 12.99% plus no annual fee it functions great as a “just-in-case” card if you do have an unexpected financial challenge, like your car breaking down, a job loss, or need to book a flight out of town for a funeral. If you tend to carry a large balance or are actively planning a big purchase then it’s probably better to get the MBNA True Line® Gold Mastercard® credit card because the interest rate is lower which makes borrowing money cheaper, even including the cost of its annual fee.

However, if you’re carrying a balance on other credit cards, this card might be the better option as it offers 0% on balance transfers in the first 12 months (with a 3% transfer fee, minimum $7.50), so if you need that peace of mind while you pay off a balance, this card’s got you covered.

This card is awesome for those who can’t stomach paying annual fees or who want to carry a credit card as a fallback for a crisis.

Key Features

  • Interest Rate: 12.99% purchases; 12.99% on balance transfers; 24.99% cash advance
  • Additional Perks:  Apple Pay compatible; Additional 9 authorized users with no additional fee; Payment Plan feature
  • Annual Fee: $0

Click here to apply or learn more by reading our complete MBNA True Line® Mastercard® credit card review.

†, ✪, Terms and Conditions apply.

This offer is not available for residents of Quebec. 

Sponsored advertising. MBNA is a division of The Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD) and TD is not responsible for the contents of this site including any editorials or reviews that may appear on this site. For complete information on this MBNA credit card, please click on the “Apply Now” button

The Toronto-Dominion Bank is the issuer of this credit card. MBNA is a division of The Toronto-Dominion Bank. ®MBNA and other-trademarks are the property of The Toronto-Dominion Bank.

HSBC +Rewards™ Mastercard®

Best for Low Interest + Rewards

Apply Now

Who’s Eligible?
– Recommended Credit Score: 630+
– Minimum Income: N/A
– Age: You must be the age of majority in your home province
– Residency: Canadian

The HSBC +Rewards™ Mastercard is a rare hybrid card that not only offers low interest rates but also earns rewards. Competitive interest rates apply across the board with 11.9% on purchases, 11.9% on balance transfers, and notably – 11.9% on cash advances.

Every $1 spent on eligible dining and entertainment purchases earns 2 Points*, and all other eligible purchases earn 1 point per $1 spent*. Points can be redeemed on travel, gift cards, and merchandise, but travel redemptions provide the greatest value and flexibility, as points are redeemed as a statement credit against any eligible travel expense, like a flight, car rental, or hotel.

This card functions as a jack of all trades and is ideal for someone who only wants to carry around a single card and isn’t interested in a bulging wallet full of different cards for different purposes.

Key Features

  • Interest Rate: 11.9% Purchase APR
  • Welcome Bonus: Get up to $200 in total value* for the first year! Must apply by May 31, 2023. Conditions apply.
  • Rewards Rates: 2 points for every $1 spent on eligible dining and entertainment purchases*; 1 point per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases*
  • Additional Perks: Buyer’s Assurance; Purchase Protection insurance; Price Protection
  • Annual Fee: $25

Click here to apply or learn more by reading our complete HSBC +Rewards™ Mastercard® review.

This offer is only available to residents of Canada other than the province of Quebec (Quebec residents eligible for separate offer).

*Terms and Conditions apply.

®/TM Mastercard and World Elite are registered trademarks, and the circles design is a trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated. Used pursuant to license.

BMO Preferred Rate Mastercard®* 

Best Low Interest Cash Advance Card

Apply Now
Who’s Eligible?
– Recommended Credit Score: Good
– Minimum Income: None
– Age: You must be the age of majority in your home province
– Residency: Canadian


The BMO Preferred Rate Mastercard®* offers a competitive interest rate for purchases at 13.99%. Putting a bigger purchase (like a kitchen appliance, computer, or TV) on the card may be a smart idea because of the low interest rate and because the card extends manufacturer warranties up to an additional year for new items, and protects items against accidental damage and theft.

This card is perfect for cardholders who have a rare cash flow issue and would otherwise seek out a payday loan – it’s much cheaper to get a cash advance from this card.

Key Features:

  • Welcome Bonus: 0.99% introductory interest rate on Balance Transfers for 9 months with a 2% transfer fee* and get the $29 annual fee waived for the first year*
  • Interest Rate: 13.99% on purchases, 15.99% on cash advances & 15.99% on balance transfers (after the first 9 months)
  • Additional Perks:  Buyer’s Assurance; Purchase Protection
  • Annual Fee: $29 with first year waived*

Click here to apply for the BMO Preferred Rate Mastercard®*

*Terms and conditions apply

CIBC Select Visa* Card

Best Low Interest Balance Transfer Card

Apply Now
Who’s Eligible?
– Recommended Credit Score: Fair-Good
– Minimum Income: $15,000
– Age: You must be the age of majority in your home province
– Residency: Canadian


Similar to the MBNA True Line, the CIBC Select Visa* Card has ongoing low rates of: 13.99% Purchase Annual Interest Rate, 13.99% Balance Transfer Annual Interest Rate, and 13.99% Cash Advance Annual Interest Rate, with an annual fee of $29, which is rebated in your first year. That rate goes even lower when you get 0% interest for up to 10 months with a 1% transfer fee. This means you can pay off your balances and purchase urgent items without having to worry about paying loads of interest on both.

The card’s promotional balance transfer offer, along with its annual fee rebate and common carrier insurance makes this a strong competitor in the low interest and balance transfer credit card market.

Key Features:

  • Welcome Bonus: Transfer your credit card balance – Get 0% interest for up to 10 months with a 1% transfer fee and a first year annual fee rebate
  • Regular Interest Rate: 13.99% Purchase Annual Interest Rate, 13.99% Cash Advance Annual Interest Rate, and 13.99% Balance Transfer Annual Interest Rate
  • Additional Perks:  Common Carrier Accident Insurance
  • Annual Fee: $29 (rebated the first year)

Click here to apply or learn more by reading our complete CIBC Select Visa* Card review.

† Conditions apply

Quebec Residents: Learn More about this CIBC product here

Résidents du Québec: Pour en savoir plus sur ce produit CIBC, suivez ce lien

Scotiabank Value® Visa* Card

Best Low Interest Visa

Apply Now

Who’s Eligible?
– Recommended Credit Score: Good
– Age: You must be the age of majority in your home province or territory
– Residency: Canadian citizen or permanent resident
– Other: No bankruptcies in the past seven years

Though most of Canada’s low interest credit cards are Mastercards, there are nonetheless a few good options for those who prefer Visa. For an annual fee of $29, the Scotiabank Value® Visa* Card offers a competitive interest rate of 12.99% on purchases, balance transfers (12.99%), and cash advances (12.99%). These universally low rates are rare, and can potentially save you a lot of money across a variety of transaction types.

The low fixed rates are also supplemented with low promotions: to boost savings for new applicants, Scotia allows cardholders to transfer a balance after being approved. Get a 0% introductory interest rate on Cash Advances, including Balance Transfers, for the first 6 months (12.99% after that; annual fee $29).¹ Plus no annual fee in the first year.¹ Offer ends October 31, 2023.

Finally, cardholders who rent vehicles at any participating AVIS location in Canada and the U.S. will receive up to 25% off on the price of their rental when they pay with their card.

Click here to apply or learn more by reading our complete Scotiabank Value® Visa* Card review.

¹ Conditions Apply. Visit here for the Scotiabank Value® Visa* Card to learn more.

How We Compared and Chose the Cards

We compared and chose each credit card based on a holistic assessment of the value of each card. Obviously, the card had to have a low interest rate.  But that wasn’t the only thing we considered. We also took into account interest rates on cash advances, balance transfers, the annual fee as well as any perks to get a bigger picture of the total potential costs and benefits. For example, a slightly higher annual fee may be worth it if the card also offers discounts or insurance.

How to Choose the Best Low-Interest Card

When comparing one low interest credit card to the next, make sure to consider your individual spending habits and what’s most relevant to your lifestyle. If your primary goal is to pay off debt faster or keep a card in case of an emergency, then perhaps looking simply for the lowest interest rate possible is right for you. But let’s say you often depend on cash advances — then you’re going to want to look for a card that not only has a low rate for purchases but also for when you need to grab bills out of the ATM. Similarly, if you plan on making some big-ticket purchases then you might want a card that offers additional benefits like extended warranties and purchase assurances. By examining your priorities you’ll be able to find the right low interest card for you.

Read Reviews

One of the best things you can do before signing up for a credit card is read reviews to know what you’re getting into. Here at GreedyRates we’ve done the hard work of looking up and comparing all the best credit cards on the Canadian market to help you choose the one that is right for you.

Check Eligibility

Not everyone is eligible for every credit card or credit card offer. It really depends on your financial history or what other banking products you have.  Read the fine print to make sure you meet the income and credit score requirements before signing up for a card. And make sure the card has the specific benefit you’re looking for.  If you’re getting a card for a specific reason, such as balance transfers, then make sure to double-check that that card actually offers balance transfers.

Interest Rate on Purchases, Cash Advances, and Balance Transfers

While some cards offer the same rate across the board most have different interest rates for purchases, cash advances and balance transfers. Knowing what you’ll mostly be using the credit card for will help you choose which card is right for you. You wouldn’t want to expect 9% and then get hit with sticker shock when they charge you 25% for a cash advance!

Annual Fee

Paying an annual fee for a low-interest credit card can feel counterintuitive, but if the rate is low enough and the perks are good enough it can be more than worth it. Often, cards with annual fees will offer lower interest rates than those without, so if you’re going to carry a balance the fee might still let you come out ahead financially. Additionally, if the card offers other benefits that will save you money, like travel insurance or discounts on car rentals, it might more than pay for itself.

Rewards & Perks

Clearly, the main advantage of a low interest rate credit card is, well — its low interest rate.  But that doesn’t mean that’s the only thing it delivers. Some cards will also give you rewards points that you can redeem for travel, merchandise, and more. Other credit cards provide insurance and extended warranties. Make sure to read up on all the benefits of a low interest credit card, and choose the one that offers the perks most suitable for your lifestyle

What to Watch For With Low Interest Credit Cards

Something to watch for is for cards that claim to be low interest but are, in reality, variable rates of prime plus. The problem is that A. the prime rate can change several times a year, and B. the “plus” can also vary depending on your eligibility. You don’t know if you’re going to get a rate of 7.69% or 15.45% before you apply. Even if you’re unhappy with the rate you get, if you were approved, you may still have to pay the annual fee.

Another thing to watch for are the new personal loans available on the marketplace. These are not the same as a low interest credit card. They may advertise rates as low as 5.9% but in reality they average 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.

Why use a credit line or a personal loan to pay off credit card debt, when you can access ultra low rates with a credit card? 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. Few, if any, other products offer interest rates as low.

How Does Credit Card Interest Work

Your credit card’s annual percentage rate, or APR, is communicated as an annual charge but is calculated daily and charged monthly. If you want to know how much interest you will accrue each day you can multiply your balance by the APR and divide it by 365.

If you have a $2,000 balance on a low rate credit card charging you 12.99% APR, for example, you would calculate $2,000 times 0.1299 APR divided by 365 days equals $0.71 per day in interest charges. To calculate the monthly cost you would simply multiply the daily interest charge by the number of days in a month. For example $0.71 times 30 days is $21.35 monthly interest. Even if your balance stays constant, your monthly interest may fluctuate slightly because the number of days in each month range from 28 to 31.

With a brand new credit card, or one without any charges because you’ve paid off the balance in full, you typically get a grace period of 21 days before interest starts to accrue on purchases. If you’re carrying a balance on your credit card, however, new purchases will begin accruing interest the day you make them.

It’s not unusual for credit cards to charge a different APR for cash advances or balance transfers. Furthermore, both of these charges tend to have no grace period, so your balance will begin accruing interest right away.

How Low Interest Credit Cards Save You Money

It’s easy for personal finance experts to say that you should never carry a balance on your credit card, but hey, real life happens. We can’t prepare for everything.  You may be just starting out in the workforce and too young to have saved a significant emergency fund. Or perhaps it was depleted by a recent disaster. Something unexpected, like a glass of wine spilling on your computer, a car that breaks down or even the siren call of a week at an all-inclusive vacation in the Dominican Republic that forces your hand.

It’s also possible you made spending mistakes in the past and are now carrying a large balance on high-interest credit cards.

No matter the reason, a low interest credit card can save you money when borrowing and help you get out of debt faster since more of your payment will be going toward the principal instead of the interest.

Let’s say you owe $4,000 on a credit card currently charging you 19.99%. You’re diligently paying $300 per month towards your balance. Here’s the difference it would make to transfer that balance to a low-interest card with an interest rate of 12.99%:

Regular Credit CardLow Interest Rate Credit Card
Interest Rate19.99%12.99%
Months to Debt Free1615
Total Interest Paid$557.21$340.39

As you can see, choosing a low-interest credit card gets you out of debt one month sooner, and reduces your interest costs by over $200. So even if the low-interest rate credit card has a small annual fee it will almost certainly still save you money.

Bottom Line

Low interest rate credit cards are awesome for financing a big purchase, debt consolidation or to keep on hand for emergencies. Paying the annual fee is most likely worth it if you carry a balance from month-to-month. But if you’re planning to use the card frequently for something other than new purchases then make sure to review the applicable rates for cash advances and balance transfers as they may differ. To choose the best card don’t forget to take into account the perks and rewards.  Either way, a low interest credit card is one of the cheapest ways to borrow money without putting down collateral. And if you carry a balance it’s going to put a lot more money in your pocket than any reward or cash-back card.

BMO is not responsible for maintaining the content on this site. Please click on the Apply now link for the most up to date information.

Author Bio

Bridget Casey
Bridget Casey is the award-winning entrepreneur behind Money After Graduation, a Canadian financial literacy website aimed at 20 and 30-somethings. She holds a BSc. from the University of Alberta, and an MBA in Finance from the University of Calgary. She has been featured as a millennial financial expert by Yahoo! Finance, TIME Magazine, Business Insider, CBC and BNN. Bridget was recognized as one of Alberta's Top Young Innovators in 2016.

Article comments

Joe says:


I don’t see Laurentian’s Visa Black Reduced Rate card on your list of low interest credit cards. Can you add it?

Bryce says:

Hi I was approved with a $4,000 Credit Limit BMO preferred rate Mastercard that I will be using solely for a balance transfer from my TD card. I would like to transfer my full $5000 though and before I activate my new BMO card can I ask them to increase my limit an extra $1000-1500 because of my situation? I have a 730 Credit Score and make more then my minimum payments

Nate Siegel says:

Hey Bryce,

Good question. It’s unfortunate to be approved for a credit limit that just shy of your outstanding balance, and so it may be worth a call to BMO to make your case. You should know beforehand, however, that BMO has already recently looked at your full financial profile via the hard pull required for the Preferred Rate card application. It knows what kind of balances you have, your credit score, and likely gathered your intentions as well! For all that, it decided to approve you for $4,000 anyway, so an appeal may not work. Like we said, it’s worth a try though.

Perhaps making the $4,000 balance transfer first will build some extra goodwill. That way, whatever agent you call will be able to see that your credit limit is indeed full, and you simply want to take further advantage of a promotion that’s profitable for them anyway. Best of luck!

GreedyRates Staff

Stacey says:

Hi there
I applied and received the MNBA card which I was going to transfer some debt from my Scotiabank visa too (as Scotiabank just screwed me over with fraudulent charges they wouldn’t deal with for 1.5 months that put my card overlimit and my credit down the tube). Anyhow I received my MNBA card and since have seen SEVERAL comments and reviews about how terrible this card is, that it’s a scam etc etc. what do I do?!

Nate Siegel says:

Hi Stacey,

Thanks for the post. If you’ve just been approved for the MBNA True Line card then go ahead and try doing your balance transfer, as you only have 90 days before the transfer is no longer eligible for MBNA’s 0% for 10 months promotion. It’s not recommended to believe everything you read on the internet, and you can believe that a site like ours gives readers a wide berth from cards that have little value. Even for tremendous deals like the True Line’s 0% for 10 months, we specify that it’s crucial you be able to make minimum payments, or else the rate will increase to 12.99%.

In many cases, and perhaps in yours, you’re looking at a lower rate any way you swing it. Especially if you haven’t tried it for yourself, and if Scotiabank has you paying high rates, then it’s not the worst thing to do a test transfer first. You’ll see how it works and then if to follow-up with more transfers to fill the rest of your approved credit limit. Otherwise, the only harm in cancelling the card without doing anything with it is the slight, temporary ding to your credit score. If you need anything or have questions, let us know!


Jackie says:

In reviewing the information, my one question is if the 0% is only accessible if you do a “credit card” balance transfer?

Nate Siegel says:

Hi Jackie,

Appreciate the awesome comment! If you’re wondering about how to use the 0% balance transfer offer via MBNA’s True Line card, then it’s definitely crucial to know the card’s various caveats. You’ll need to make your balance transfers (any number of them) within 90 days of activating the card once you get it, and tolerate a 3% fee for each transfer, which just ends up being 3% of the total anyway. Regarding where you can transfer balances from, it’s important to realize that the card does NOT do exclusively balance transfers from credit cards. MBNA also allows cardholders to consolidate debt from other sources, such as lines of credit or loans.

The balance transfer also does not need to be ‘incoming’, for example sending your outstanding balance to MBNA from your other bank. The credit limit you’re approved for can also simply be deposited elsewhere, which accomplished largely the same thing (and at the same bonus 0% rate for 10 months) but can be more flexible for some people. We’ve had nothing but great feedback from MBNA cardholders with the True Line, and hope you join them! Let us know if we can be of any further help.


M. Faith says:

I’ve just come across your site and am thrilled to finally find clear and easy to understand financial information! Thank you! I’ve got a balance of about $6800 on a Visa Desjardins Card with an annual rate of 10.9%. I’m able to make roughly double the amount requested for the min.payments, and would be able to make larger payments over the next 12 months.I’m wondering if it would be worth it to switch to one of the MBNA cards with the 0% promotions? My thought process is that having the 0% rate would make my payments have a bigger impact than the current card. Are there any downsides to switching to this card? I do not use the card for daily expenses, it’s only up as high as it is because of unexpected big expenses in the past, but other than that it sits for emergency’s only. I’d love to have it paid off completely though.

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey M,

You’ve asked a great question and actually represent one of the more ideal candidates for a credit card like the MBNA True Line (or True Line Gold), offering 0.00% interest on balance transfers for 10 months. Especially if you’re able to make larger payments in the upcoming year, then knocking interest out of the equation for the majority of this time would be an enormous advantage. Think of it this way, if you were unable to make any payment except for the minimum, 0.00% versus 10.90% over 10 months with a $6,800 balance would save you over $500 in interest. That’s money you can put towards your principal instead.

As for downsides, you should remember that the card has some minor caveats, but ones that don’t outweigh its impressive promotion. For example, you’ll need to get approved for a credit limit that matches or eclipses your Desjardins balance in order to do the whole transfer at once, and also there’s a 3.00% transfer fee (adding $204 and making your balance $7,004 instead of $6,800). Make sure you continue to resist using your balance transfer card for purchases, as you’ve been doing as well. Send an application today and start saving while you have this discretionary income! Good luck.


Jan says:

Hello GreedyRates Team,

Many thanks for publishing this article & also posting equally helpful comments and responses. Definitely one of the most beneficial blogs I’ve read recently as I try to navigate my way out of debt in my mid-twenties!
I’d really appreciate your knowledgeable input on the following:
I bank with TD where I currently owe $14k on my line of credit (with a prime rate so the interest fluctuates, generally charged $116 or so per month for interest) and $15k on my PC credit card. Yikes! As you may know the interest on that hard is a ridiculously high but the standard 19.99% and I’m trying to decide if the MBNA True Line® Gold Mastercard is a better option vs the TD Emerald Flex Rate Visa to blow this debt faster? I’m leaning towards the former because of the steady 8% interest rate vs a variable rate and the promotional balance transfer option. Do you know when they usually extend this promotion from 6 months no interest to 10 months? Seems like it may be in the fall. I’d definitely prefer 10 months/no interest, who wouldn’t! Hopefully the have $15-$30k card limits available.
On the bright side, my credit is good so the plan is to transfer the PC credit card debt to a low interest card and use $10k from an investment to pay it down immediately plus $400-500 per month to clear the remaining $5k over the period of 10- 11 months. As for the LOC, I haven’t penciled down a strategy to demolish that one yet, apart from working OT regularly and cutting back on certain expenses to increase cash flow. I’m currently just putting approximately $200 per month towards that one and ignoring it for the most part and we see how well that’s working for me at this point (not!).

If you have any other valuable suggestions/alternative please feel free to provide! =)


The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey Jan!

We appreciate the kind words and hope to help you start crushing your outstanding balances. It sounds like you have a good grasp on the situation and are familiar with the idea that both the True Line Mastercard and the Emerald Flex Rate Visa, for all their benefits, aren’t able to apply their promotional interest rates to debts already owned by TD (your line of credit). However, we believe that the former card (True Line) will certainly be an ideal solution for the quick repayment strategy you have planned for your PC balance.

Unless you think you’ll spend many months at the post-promotional rate to pay off the remaining balance, the regular True Line card is worth getting over the Gold card, as it has 4 more months at 0.00% and no annual fee. After getting approved, determine your new credit limit and then you can use your $10,000 from the investment to pay the PC balance down to size—small enough to make the entire balance transfer to MBNA in one go. It sits at 0.00% interest for 10 months while you chip away with steady payments. The lack of interest accrued will help give you a healthier cash flow for the time being, but the priority is to tread water with PC while demolishing the MBNA balance. Good luck!


DJ Campbell says:

I’m surprised RBC low rate card wasn’t mentioned here.
It’s lower interest than the Scotia one,lower annual fee and you benefit from gas savings and warranty protection. I like the amex one for sure, but the numbers on this compared to Scotia makes sense.

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey DJ,

Great comment! We’re also fans of the RBC Visa Classic Low-Rate card, but only for certain cardholders, and obviously we can’t fit every card on a list meant to illustrate the best of the best. Remember that the card that suits you well is always what we encourage you to get, whether it’s on a list of the “best” or on our site at all. The RBC Visa you describe has been reviewed by our team, which confirmed that it’s a solid choice if you often need to carry your balance from month-to-month. With a competitive 11.99% rate advertised, you’ll accrue less than the average amount of interest from other cards (around 20.00% or more) but the reason that the card didn’t make it onto the “best of” list is because this low purchase rate is variable.

To obtain the 11.99% rate, you’ll need to qualify with a low credit score, and RBC notes that only those applicants with the most exemplary scores will be eligible, with others likely to experience purchase interest rates of 19.99%. In these latter instances, the card isn’t much better than most. The idea that only those with high credit scores will get the lowest purchase rate, when the point of the card is to help people who carry their balances (an activity that isn’t conducive to high scores) is a bit ironic, but in individual cases can be effective. Look closely at the fine print and take a second look at the Scotia card again now that you have another viewpoint available. We’re here for anything else you need.

GreedyRates Staff

Archie says:

Hello Greedyrates,

Thank you very much for putting efforts and information in this article. I found it well written and easy to understand this tough field of banking and finances. I have a line of credit of around $9800 with 8.9% with TD. Also more than $5000 on TD visa. my credit score is good and I am trying to clear off my debt slowly. After reading your article. I applied today for MBNA True Line Gold.
My considerations: one, to have a card with the lowest payment, exclusively for debt payment with 0 to lowest interest payment. Two, to have a regular credit card for day to day purchases. What will be your suggestions? Is RBC platinum visa card is good for my debt payment exclusively and MBNA for my day to day expenditure?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey Archie!

Thanks for the comment and for showing your appreciation, we’re always glad to help. It’s important for us to understand why you wanted the MBNA True Line Gold card, because it has some limitations that affect you specifically. It could be good for daily spending, especially with a low regular interest rate of 8.99%, but the card’s main feature is its lucrative promotion for 0.00% interest on transferred balances. However: You won’t be able to transfer your TD line of credit or credit card balances to the MBNA card, because TD and MBNA are the same bank. We warn applicants about this in the review and our guide on balance transfers, because despite that one bank is called MBNA and the other TD, TD acquired MBNA back in 2015. No bank will let its own customers discount their debt for no reason, this is why new debt (from other banks) is allowed the interest reduction only.

You might get approved for the MBNA True Line Gold card, and even be able to transfer balances to it, but the 0.00% rate is off the table. If this ruins your plans, don’t worry. You can leave the Gold card in your wallet and apply for a different balance transfer promotion, which will help consolidate your debt sources at a lower rate. If approved, BMO will give you interest rate shelter with its Air Miles Mastercard. Regardless of whether you want Air Miles or not, the card currently offers 1.99% interest for 9 months. You can find better cards for daily purchases, unless the low purchase rate on the Gold card is why you’ve set your sights on it. Otherwise, it doesn’t earn any rewards or have much in the way of extra features. Let us know what your strategy is, which types of rewards match your habits and we’ll provide better suggestions!


Laurie says:

Hello Greedyrates,

I received a Desjardins visa with my brick do pay for a year account but I want to get rid of this card when I pay off my brick account. I have a $3000 balance that I would need to transfer. I have great credit but I dont want to be paying high interest rates as I use my credit card frequently. What card do you think is the best option for me?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hello Laurie!

Thank you very much for the excellent question. If your credit is as good as you say, it should be no problem at all to get one of the many excellent balance transfer promotions available right now, which come with a handful of credit cards from banks like MBNA and BMO. A $3,000 balance is relatively low and with a good credit score you should easily be able to get a card like the True Line Mastercard from MBNA with a $3,000+ credit limit and thereby transfer your entire balance in one go. This card is one of the best options for moving a balance and sheltering it from high interest over time, with a 0.00% promotional rate on your transferred balance that lasts for 10 months. During this time, you can make payments at whatever pace you like (as long as you’re managing the monthly minimum) and slowly work off that debt.

Another great option is the Scotiabank Momentum Visa, which currently offers a deal for 2.99% interest for 6 months. Though it doesn’t hold a candle to the balance transfer promotion offered by MBNA, the card is also more usable for everyday purchases with 2.00% back on gas and groceries, drugstore purchases and recurring bills alike. You’ll also get 1.00% elsewhere, making for a blend of utility that might be more suitable for your situation than a card which packs all its value into the transfer deal alone. Finally, be aware that closing your old Desjardins card after the transfer will result in a slight hit to your credit, and there’s no harm in keeping it open for a while as your credit recovers. Thanks again for the comment and good luck with your choice!

GreedyRates Staff

James says:

Hi GreedyRates,

Thanks to you, I found out about the MBNA Trueline mastercard and just received mine in the mail last week. I got the promotion of 0% for 6 months but now I see that it’s changed to 0% for 10 months. Am I able to upgrade to 10 months or am I stuck with the promotion I have? I’m very happy with my current promotion but the extra four months would be nice.



The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey James!

Thanks for your comment, and congratulations on obtaining what is most likely the best balance transfer promotion available to Canadians currently. However—that’s not exactly the case, is it? We know that the recent changes made to the card extend the promotion for another four months, and this is undoubtedly because MBNA wants to motivate applicants to sign up for the card before the window closes (on December 31st, the deal is discontinued).

Since you applied for the card before the promotion changed, you’re not automatically upgraded to 10 months at 0.00%, but you can certainly ask. Call MBNA and make your case and see if they’ll be flexible. Often times, if you use your own power as a consumer you can squeeze some extra services out of the bank, by indicating that you’ll likely transfer a larger balance if the promotion could get extended, or that you’ve found a better deal elsewhere (a veiled threat to leave the bank).

If you’re not successful, just keep the promotion you have and enjoy! Thanks again.


Tinta says:

Hello there GreedyRates Team!

I have around $6000 balance on my Scotia Visa Card. I am focusing on cleaning out my debt. I have BMO Preferred Low-interest card with a Promotional interest rate of 0% for 12 months with an available credit limit of $3000.

If I transfer $3000 to BMO from Scotia and avail 0% offer then I will owe 3000 on BMO and 3000 on Scotia. Which one should I focus to pay a higher amount of i.e
1. The higher amount on BMO and minimum payment on Scotia or
2. The higher amount on Scotia and minimum amount on BMO?

BMO promotional interest is 0% for 12 months and after that 11.99%

Scotia interest rate is 19.99%

I am also approved for American Express Essential card with credit limit of $1000 which will be my backup card.

Thank you.

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hi Tinta!

We greatly appreciate your comment and look forward to working through this little puzzle with you! Let’s run through a few potential ways this could play out. Keep in mind, however, that one extremely relevant factor to this decision is how fast you’re able to reduce your balance. How much per month do you think you can put towards your debt? Regardless, here’s what may happen:

First let’s assume that you choose to pay off the $3,000 balance that’s sheltered under your BMO 0.00% promotion, before paying off the $3,000 balance with Scotia. We’ll also assume that you can pay the entire balance before the promotion ends. In this case, you’ll accrue $600 more debt on your Scotia balance (19.99% on $3,000 for 12 months) and reduce your BMO balance to 0, bringing your total balance to $3,600 after the year is over. End result? A $3,600 balance at 19.99%–a high rate.

What if you choose to pay off the Scotia balance first? If it takes you the full year that your other balance is with BMO, then you now have a $3,000 balance with BMO at 11.99% (better than $3,600 at 19.99% surely) but you also accrued an unknown amount of interest during the year when paying off the Scotia balance. You’ll also need to have paid the minimum payments to BMO during the year as well, in order to maintain the 0.00% promotion. In conclusion, you’ll likely save more money by letting your 0.00% balance sit and working hard to reduce your higher interest balance first.

If you’ve got anything relevant to add that may affect the outcome above, then feel free to email us at [email protected] to keep your personal financial detail off the comments section. Appreciated!

GreedyRates Staff

Chelsea says:

Hello there GreedyRates Team!

Thank you so very much for the very detailed article. I just got off the phone with a TD representative in regards to my interest rate, & decided to take a peek online before I made any commitments. I had initially inquired about the possibility of lowering my interest rate of 19.99% (yikes) however the only option that the representative gave me was to switch to a TD Emerald Flex card with an interest rate of 16.7% & $25.00 annual fee. With a mere 3.29% change in addition to an annual fee, there just doesn’t seem to be a whole lot of incentive here in my humble opinion…

I currently owe a balance of $7,500.00 on my TD Green Visa. Though I have no problem whatsoever making my monthly minimum payments & will continue to do so, there just isn’t much incentive for me to pay any more than just that at the moment when the interest charges cost me just as much, if not more than my monthly minimum payments that are due. My credit rating is in the 750 area as well!

Ideally I would like to transfer this balance to a card that will not gauge me with interest rates or annual fees, & provide me with some time to pay off the balance – as paying it off in a large lump sum is just not an option for me at this point in time. I do not need any fancy bells or whistles either to say the least!

I look forward to hearing from you, & can’t thank you enough for the well written/helpful article. Thank you so much, chat again soon!



The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey There Chelsea!

Thanks for coming to GreedyRates and explaining your situation so well, and for describing your ideal card. It’ll make our job that much easier. We also enjoy the appreciation and kind words, obviously! To begin, let’s look at how much interest you’ll save by switching over to the Emerald Flex card from your current credit card. We know you’re hesitant to pay the $25 annual fee and to go through the process of switching, but we assure you it’s a breeze, and your $7,500 balance justifies the swap anyway. The 3.29% lower interest on the other card winds up saving you $247 in yearly interest, assuming that you only make minimum or near-minimum payments each month.

However, we’re not convinced that taking your bank’s offer is the best option. There are other balance transfer cards to explore, though your membership with TD does disqualify you from two of the best (the MBNA True Line cards). This is because TD and MBNA are essentially the same bank, and don’t allow cardholders to double dip promotions. The best alternative is probably the BMO Preferred Rate Mastercard, which gives you a 3.99% introductory rate on your balance transfer for 9 months. This should help you concentrate more of your earnings towards your balance and reduce it for when the rate increases. The card’s regular purchase and cash advance interest rate is 11.90%, which suppresses interest charges even further.

By switching over to BMO, you’ll also be able to cancel your TD card, and then you’ll have the option to return to TD/MBNA once your 9 months is up (if you like). If you’d already cancelled the card then you’ll no longer be a cardholder and thus, enjoy eligibility for a card like the True Line Gold Mastercard, which offers 0.00% interest for 6 months and then a post-promotional rate of 8.99%. Let us know how you want to tackle the situation.


Johanne says:

I have applied for the RBC Visa Platinum credit card and had to cancel it right away without activating it. I wanted to consolidate my debts and take advantage of the interest rate. When I received my card the credit limit was only at $1000. I sent an email to an adviser to increase the limit and he replied that they can’t increase the limit because and it would take 6 months to see how I do paying each month. I tried to explain again why I wanted to increase the limit and still the same answer no flexibility. I have a really good credit score.

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey Johanne,

These types of comments are always tough for us to address, because at the end of the day we don’t have the same information as the banks we write about. If a reader has been declined for a credit card that we recommend, even with great credit like yours, we have no recourse and can only provide some reasons why it might have happened. First, remember that the card you applied for a has a longer promotional period of 30 months, so if RBC wanted to keep you at a $1,000 credit limit for your first 6, it makes a bit more sense. This is one of the best balance transfer deals in the country and is already starting to become hard to obtain unfortunately, so RBC may have also informed their staff to only accept “sure thing” applications.

Regarding your own application, it might help to know that your credit score is not the most important factor that lenders scrutinize during the application approval process. More important is your current debt burden, your history of repayment, current income, home situation, and countless other components of your complete financial picture. We know it might not make sense to criticize an applicant for a debt consolidation card based on their debt, but banks will always act in their best interest.

We’d be happy to recommend some other balance transfer deals in the meantime. MBNA’s True Line Gold card is one of the most popular currently, due to its low promotional and post-promotional interest rates of 0.00% for 6 months and then 8.99% from then on. Perhaps you’ll have better luck with this card.


The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey Noelle,

We appreciate you coming to explain your financial situation so thoroughly. If you have an outstanding balance of $7,200 on your TD Emerald Flex Rate card, then it’s important to pay it off as soon as you can. Even at a rate of 8.20%, which is relatively low for the industry, it’ll take you much more time with compounding interest. Your empty line of credit, assuming it could absorb your TD balance, is probably your best bet at this juncture. Why? Because the best balance transfer cards on the market also come from TD (or MBNA to be specific), so you won’t be able to get a balance transfer promotion via either True Line card.

The Essential card you mention is a solid option, but you should keep in mind that Amex doesn’t allow new cardholders to transfer more than 50% of their approved credit limit to avail of any low-interest bonuses. You’ll see on the page’s not-so-fine print “You can transfer 50% of your assigned credit limit, up to a maximum of $7,500, whichever is less. There is no balance transfer fee for this offer.” This means you’ll need to get approved for a credit limit that’s double your balance of $7,200 in order to shelter the entire amount.

Still, it could be useful even if you aren’t able to transfer your whole balance, as would a card like the BMO Air Miles Mastercard, which offers 1.99% for 9 months instead of 6 months. Feel free to let us know what you’re thinking and we’ll be happy to provide more guidance if necessary. Thanks again.


Noelle says:

Hi, thank you for your response, quite helpful! Well, the BMO Air Miles Mastercard is out because if I were to get a new credit card (I only have one) I would get one that had a lower interest rate than this one at 19.99% as I would likely want to use it for purchases at some point. The 9 months versus 6 months is good however. I think I could get approved for at least the approx $15000 on the Amex as I have a long and very good credit history overall. It’s a good second card for me, double the warranty on new purchases, no annual fee, and Front of the Line access etc all sound good. But it’s a bit of a hassle having to do a 2 step process from them to my line of credit… which can absorb the whole amount of my TD debt. So I think I will probably put it on my line of credit for now, pay it off as fast as possible, and also look into the new credit card that Simplii Financial is coming out with soon, though I’m pretty sure their interest rate will not be the greatest… I used to have their Mastercard (when they were PC Financial) and never used it much due to the high interest. That was years ago and they may have more competitive rates and offers now. The Amex card is in my future I think though! 🙂 Is there any advantage for me to apply from your site versus just calling them? Thanks again!

Tom says:

Given decent credit score is there a scale of income to credit available

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey Tom,

Unfortunately, a tool like this would be very difficult to build, and inaccurate. Though a calculator to determine your potential approved credit limit based on income (and assuming good credit) would be useful, lenders look at a much more comprehensive variety of information when determining how much credit to extend. While it’s true that one’s credit usually increases as their income does, it’s not that straightforward. Banks and credit card issuers also scrutinize your credit score (decent isn’t a good enough indicator), your existing loans, credit history, recent inquiries and applications, and much more.

You’re better off looking at the last time you were approved for credit and extrapolating based on how your financial performance has been since then. If you’ve landed a better job and more income, been paying your bills on time and not increased your debts, then it’s safe to guess that you’ll be approved for more credit, not less. However, this is circumstantial, and still requires numerous outside factors to confirm. Best of luck!


Veronica says:

Hi I am a senior can u advise me on a credit card I have mc presidents choice the interest rate is to high I usually pay balance every month

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hi Veronica,

Thanks for coming to GreedyRates. If you’re a senior and are looking to replace your current credit card from PC Financial, we’d be happy to suggest a couple nice alternatives that have a lower interest rate. Since you pay your balance every month as well, we’ll omit recommendations that only offer low rates on balance transfers for the purpose of debt consolidation. Instead, the cards most relevant to you will have a competitive interest rate on purchases and cash advances.

A great option for you is the Desjardins Modulo Visa, which has a purchase, cash advance, and balance transfer interest rate of 10.90%. Though its annual fee is $50 instead of $0, Desjardins offers the ability to earn 1.00% in BONUSDOLLARS on all your purchases. These can be spent on travel, tickets for shows and events, rewards and gift cards, and even cash back against your statement. There are many other great low-interest cards on our site for you to look at as well. If you have any questions about these cards, how to apply, or need help using our site, just reply to this comment or email us at [email protected]. Thanks!


Selma says:

I have credit debt of about 5000.00 with a credit score of 650ish which card would be best for me?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hi Selma,

Appreciate your comment and your referring back to us for a card recommendation. If your credit is 650, then you’re on the upper end of ‘fair’ (with regard to your first question) and eligible for some of the best credit cards available to Canadians. With an outstanding balance of $5,000, however, then we think the best option for you is to do a balance transfer to your next card. This means that you’ll transfer your existing balance to a new credit card/bank thereby consolidating your new rate and your old one into a single, lower package.

You’re definitely capable of getting approved for the RBC Visa Platinum card, for example. It offers you credit up to $50,000 plus insurance on your rental car and purchases made on the card, but the balance transfer offer of 5.90% interest for 30 months is most relevant to you. You can pay just 5.90% on that $5,000 balance you have, letting you take a breather from high interest and more. Without more information about what you want in a credit card, we can’t offer much more focused recommendations.

If you like cash back more than the ability to avoid high interest, for instance, then you could check out the Tangerine Money-Back card as well. It’s a simple offer: pick two categories where you’d like to earn 2.00% cash back and get 0.50% everywhere else. You can swap anytime between categories like Home Improvement, Gas, Groceries, Bills, and many others. If you choose to deposit your cash back to a Tangerine Savings Account, you’ll even get a third 2.00% category, making the card competitive with those in upper tiers, which is a great opportunity for something with fair credit.


Selma says:

What’s a fair or good credit score?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey Selma,

Thanks for coming to us with a request for more information about credit scores. It’s key to know what we mean when we say ‘fair’ or ‘good’ credit score so that you don’t apply to a credit card with an unsuitable score. To avoid the resulting hard check and denial, check out our guide on credit scores here. For a short answer, ‘fair’ means between 500 and 700, while a good score falls above this range. There’s another article we wrote about the best cards for those with fair credit, which you should also take a look at.


Tanya says:

Waffling between the MBNA True Line and True Line Gold. I’m not sure I can pay the balance I want to transfer in 6 months, but definitely would be paid in a year How large of a balance for how long would make the lower interest rate and annual fee pay off?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey Tanya,

If you’re trying to decide between the MBNA True Line and True Line Gold Mastercard, then the biggest factor in your eventual choice is the size of your balance. This is true because you’re confident that you’ll be able to pay it off in a year, so to make the 8.99% rate worth paying $39 for (as opposed to $0 for 12.99%), you’ll need to figure out how much that extra 4.00% will save you over 6 months’ time. This considers that for both cards, your first 6 months will be without interest and the post-promotion interest rates are very low.

According to our math, the minimum balance you can have to make paying the $39 worthwhile is $1,950. Look at it this way: If your balance is just $1,000, then you’ll accrue $64.95 in interest at 12.99% in those 6 months and pay $0 in annual fees, for a total of $64.95. If you choose to pay the annual fee for 4.00% less interest on your $1,000 balance, your final payment will be $44.95. However, after adding the fee that’s $83.95. $1,950 is the breakeven point because if you choose to pay $0 for 12.99% interest for 6 months, your total interest charge will be $126.65. If you get the Gold card, 8.99% interest for 6 months plus the $39 annual fee is also $126.65. The larger your balance, the greater value you gain from the flat rate that you’re paying for that 8.99%.

Hope that answers your question thoroughly! As always, let us know if you need further assistance.


Brenda says:

Hi. I had an RBC cashback mastercard that I used for a cash advance to pay for a new roof. I got the 1.9% over 10 months and paid it off just last week when the 10 months expired. I called them to see if they had any offers that would allow me to advance more money for another term as I now need 10,000 for another renovation. They said I could not get the same rate on that card and would have to go with a rate around 8% which is the best they could offer so I canceled the card. I guess my question is how soon can I reapply for another RBC cashback card? I think they call this cycling and not sure how strict they are on that. Any advice would be helpful. Thanks

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey Brenda,

Great comment. We applaud you for successfully completing your balance transfer! It’s awesome how much money you saved, isn’t it? Now that you (obviously) want a repeat experience, you’ll likely have to go to with another card from scratch, because most banks only offer their best balance transfer deals to new customers, or existing customer with new debt from another source.

You think you could pay off this $10,000 in 6 months? If so, check out the True Line Gold Mastercard from MBNA, which is currently offering 0.00% for 6 months to new customers who transfer a balance. Afterwards, your rate won’t rocket up to 20.00% or 24.00% either, it’ll stay at 8.99%–a very unique and forgiving model. If 6 months isn’t your cup of tea, then there are other comparable 10-month balance transfer deals, such as the Best Western Rewards Mastercard and the Harley-Davidson Mastercard.

As long as you’re a new cardholder and your debt is transferred from another lender (not RBC), you’ll probably also be able to get your hands on the RBC Visa Platinum card, which offers 5.90% interest for a whopping 30 months (2.5 years!). We’d call over to RBC to make sure that you’re eligible, however. If you are (and be sure to mention that it’s through us), then apply through our link because RBC may not have the same promotion on their own site. Need more info? Let us know and we’ll reply promptly!

GreedyRates Staff

Larry Joseph says:

I owe about $30000 on a TD Emerald card with 7.95% interest. I’m having a hard time paying it down. Would I be able to get the MBNA 0% card (owned by TD also) and do a deposit transfer to my bank acct (with no interest) and then use it to pay down the Emerald card? What are the limits to this? Could I do the whole amount and then at the end of the year do something similar again to avoid the higher interest rate on what balance I have left. Essentially switching to the best rates to maximize my payments. If no, what would be the best strategy for me?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hi Larry!

We’re glad you came to us for advice about a potential balance transfer. If you have $30,000 exposed to high interest, then you could be collecting significant compounded interest charges already, which will have a negative impact on your ability to pay it off in a timely (and inexpensive) manner. However, your balance is with TD, meaning that you won’t be able to use TD or MBNA balance transfer deals to escape these interest charges. This is because MBNA and TD are essentially the same bank, though TD Asset Group is the official parent company. You’ll have to go elsewhere for your transfer.

Thankfully, RBC presents a solution that’s quite suitable for you, in their Visa Platinum card. Instead of charging 0.00% interest for a very short period like 6 months (which might not be enough time for a large balance like yours), RBC charges a bit more interest but applies the promotion for years, literally. You can shelter that $30,000 under just 5.90% interest for 30 months (2.5 years), making it much easier to rid yourself of this outstanding balance. There are other great options as well, all listed in the link below. If you have any specific questions, feel free to comment again or shoot us an email.

GreedyRates Staff

Frances says:

I’m wondering which card would make the most sense if I wanted to make a new purchase that will take me longer than 6 months to pay off? Would it make sense to take advantage of one of the cash advance deals and make the purchase that way?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey Frances,

Thanks for your awesome comment! We’re glad that you’re getting inspired by our articles and are now curious about how to finance a large upcoming purchase. We’d be glad to help. If the item is expensive and you don’t think you’ll be able to pay it off within 6 months, then you’ll still be able to get a lot of value from a 6-month balance transfer promotion.

Essentially, you’d apply for a card like the True Line Mastercard, and once you get it, make your purchase with another credit card or bank account. The True Line card will allow you to deposit your credit limit into that account, which effectively erases that portion of your balance and transplants it with MBNA at 0.00% interest for 6 months. Work hard to reduce this balance as much as you can in 6 months, so that your remaining debt is negligible after the promotion ends.

This method is extremely logical, especially if you’re approved for the Gold True Line card, which raises its interest rates after 6 months, but to only 8.99%. This is probably less than your existing bank charges, so after you pay off your new purchase, you can simply transfer the rest of your balance to MBNA and continue using your old card. However, if all this maneuvering is too complicated, check out the RBC Visa Platinum card. This will keep your balance safe at 5.90% for 30 months, letting you pay it back gradually without much risk of compound interest.

Thanks again for reading,
The GreedyRates Team

Chris Poellein says:

I have been a MBNA costumer since 2007 because of the 9.99% interest rate and the frequent Promotions. But … MBNA send me a notice that they are raising their interest rate to 14.99% starting August 1st . A sudden 5% increase !!! Sorry .. but I’m not THAT loyal !

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey Chris,

Your comment is much appreciated. We understand how frustrating it can be for issuers to raise interest rates suddenly, though this is how it has always worked with variable rates. They reserve the right to change your rate when they like, but usually don’t surprise cardholders like this. It’s logical that they might alter one’s rate if they miss minimum payments, but we’ve had a few readers express their displeasure upon realizing that they suddenly pay more interest than they used to–even with perfect payment histories.

At least they gave you some warning before raising your rates. This gives you more than enough time to find a better option and let MBNA know that their new policy has resulted in one less customer. It will also give MBNA a chance to offer you a better rate to keep you on their balance sheet. We always recommend that cardholders who are switching to another card or issuer call their old one first, as it often produces a better deal.

If not, then feel free to explore other options. We’re seeing a lot of great balance transfer deals going around lately, and you could easily use one of them to escape high interest and MBNA all in one move. They’re all found on our page below. Check them out and let us know if you have any follow-up questions. Best of luck!

The GreedyRates Team

Carla says:

Hi, regarding your MBNA Trueline card comments- “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”; “it takes two minutes and does not count as a credit inquiry to get your rate.” How do you see the strength of my credit without a credit inquiry soft or hard to my account???

GreedyRates says:

Hi Carla! Thanks for your question. We’ll do our best to address it satisfactorily. Regarding the MBNA Trueline card, this is one of the few cards that will allow you to determine your eligibility without receiving lasting effects on your credit score. Here’s how it works: basically, when you use MBNA’s tool to discover the rate that you’ll be approved for, you will receive a soft credit inquiry on your report, which has no negative effects on your credit. Here’s what the fine print says:

“By submitting the form below, your request will automatically generate an inquiry on your credit bureau file. The information will then be shared with TransUnion, an external credit reporting agency. If everything matches, we will verify your identity and provide you with the low annual interest rate that you are eligible to receive.”

Hard checks or credit inquiries last longer, normally for a period between 3 and 6 years, though their impact is minimal. If you are happy with the rate you’re approved for and do decide to apply for the card, then MBNA will replace the soft inquiry with a hard one (though you’ll already know your eligibility). Good luck and happy card hunting!

GreedyRates Staff

CHB says:

Ok, Main questions. At this point Im paying off $25,000 on a 13% cc. How do I pay off this with the lowest interest and also have a card to use for regular use. I would ideally have 0% card rate to pay off balance and another lowest interest card to use for regular use that could carry a small balance if needed.
Thanks for the help!

GreedyRates says:

Hey CHB, thanks for the questions, and for your thorough details. If you’re looking at the Platinum Plus card to help reduce your exposure to interest, you’re already halfway to a solution. There are no better deals out there, and if you’re approved for a $25,000 credit limit with MBNA, you can essentially park your entire balance there for a year, and not worry about the 13.00% interest at all. In the mean time, you now have a completely empty credit card to use however you like.

Alternatively, you could cancel your older credit card and find a low-rate option like you originally suggested. We really like the RBC Visa Classic Low Rate card, which is a simple credit card that offers two basic perks: a low annual fee and 11.99% interest on everything. There are other low-interest cards that might suit you better. Check them out here.

GreedyRates Staff

Corey says:

Is the 0% rate from the date that you are approved and receive the card? or from the date of the transaction? If approved for $5000 and decide to do the “transfer of funds to bank account” is that 0% for 12 months from the date of transaction. Then I can pay off other debts and bills with the funds transferred to my bank account and pay the $5000 back within the 12 months?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Corey, thanks for the request for clarification–we can definitely help. This is how the 0.00% rate works on the MBNA Platinum Plus card. You’re given a 0.00% rate on all balances transferred to the card within the first 90 days of ownership, whether you transfer them piecemeal or in bulk. Your only restrictions are this 90-day window and your available credit limit, which is up to MBNA to determine based on your credit history. The 0.00% is applied to each balance from the date of the transfer (made within the window), so if you were approved for the card a few weeks ago and just now received it, you can wait to do your $5000 transfer until the end of the 90-day window and still receive the full year of no interest. This is how it’s written on MBNA’s website:

The rate applies to “any balance transfers made within 90 day(s) of your account opening and will remain in effect for 12 Statement Periods from the transaction date of each eligible transaction.” Overall, the scenario you described in your comment was possible, so good luck!

GreedyRates Staff

James says:

I just paid off a balance on my MBNA Platinum Plus card. The 12 month 0% promotion has expired and I was wondering how I go about getting that same 0% interest promotion again? Do I need to cancel it and reapply?

GreedyRates says:

Hi James, we appreciate your comment. Congratulations on paying off your balance with the Platinum Plus! MBNA’s promotion with this card is amazing, and we’re glad you could experience it. You’re also not the first person to want the same deal another time, and there’s really nothing stopping you. Just remember a few things:

MBNA won’t let you open another Platinum Plus card while there’s still an account open, so you’ll have to cancel your other card first. Also, you can’t transfer balances from MBNA or TD accounts to the Platinum Plus, because then the bank would be cannabalizing its own debt.

Cancel your Platinum Plus card, now that the balance is at zero, and wait a month or so before reapplying for it again. This way, the bank’s records will have updated across its entire system, and there should be no obstacles standing between you and your second 0.00% interest rate promotion. Enjoy!

GreedyRates Staff

Daryn says:

I have a MBNA card with the 0% interest for 12 months. I dont have any debts and was wondering if it a good idea to do a cash advance for the full credit limit of 6500 (cash advance is the same at 0% interest for 12 months) and invest it in an RRSP, it is better than using a credit line. I just payoff the card within the 12. months. Does this make good sense?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Daryn, thanks for coming to GreedyRates! If you aren’t planning on doing a balance transfer or deposit transfer from another bank, you can’t avail of the 0.00% interest promotion. Cash advances made with the Platinum Plus card carry a monthly interest of 24.99%. If you want the MBNA Platinum Plus card and plan on using it to do a deposit transfer (paying off a loan or line of credit in full by transferring your approved credit limit to the lending bank), then you’ll need to take out your new debt within the first 90 days of getting the Platinum Plus card. As we understand it, you were approved for and received your Platinum Plus card already, even though you had no outstanding balances, so depending on when you were approved it could be possible to benefit from the interest rate reduction. We can’t say how effective your investment strategy is, however. How you use the money is up to you, just make sure you can pay off your balance within 12 months.

GreedyRates Staff

Teresa Wishart says:

I owe a lot of money on a Walmart Credit Card..can I transfer this debt at a lower interest rate and make a good size payment every month.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Teresa! Thanks for leaving your comment here with us. If you’ve got any amount of debt in any form–loan, another credit card, a line of credit, and more–the MBNA Platinum Plus card will accept it as a transfer. It’s even better if you’re planning on making sizeable payments and working hard to reduce the total balance, so we give you a big thumbs up! The other cards listed on the article above are also useful for reducing your balance, but none will grant you that 0.00% interest rate. Keep in mind that the Platinum Plus has a 1.00% balance transfer fee, so if you’re transfering a large amount, be prepared to pay for the privilege of these low rates. Thanks again.

GreedyRates Staff

Pat says:

Hello. Is it possible to do a balance transfer from my MBNA credit card to some else’s bank account?
Thanks for your advice throughout the years.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Pat, thanks for the interesting question. MBNA is very flexible when it comes to transferring different types of debt between accounts, but you’ll have to check with them first to see if this is possible. It’s likely that you’ll be able to transfer your balance to a spouse or partner on a joint account, but not to a stranger. Until we get more detail we can’t know for sure. One way that MBNA allows balances to be transferred is to do a “deposit transfer,” whereby one can send their approved credit limit to a different bank holding the balance. This could potentially be a spouse’s bank account and not your own, we think. Please check with MBNA, however. Also – let us know what you find out! Great question, and good luck.

GreedyRates Staff

Mike says:

I have a MBNA Platinum Plus card with about a $2000 balance where the promotional interest rate of 0% will expire about Feb. 6th, 2018
I also have an AMEX card with about a $3900 balance
I applied for another MBNA Platinum Plus card around August 2017 to try to transfer this AMEX balance but was denied because I already had an MBNA account (the Platinum Plus card mentioned above)
I now have a Scotia Bank card $5000 limit with a .99% or 1% promotion for 6 months.
I cannot transfer all the balances from both cards above (AMEX and MBNA cards)
Should I transfer the full balance from the MBNA Platinum Plus card (about $2000) to the Scotia Bank card? I will also transfer about $3000 from the AMEX card which will then reach the full $5000 limit on the new Scotia Bank Card.
Then should I close the MBNA Platinum Plus card’s account and re-apply for another MBNA Platinum Plus card to take advantage of the 0% promotion?

Julie says:

In the UK these same companies offer zero interest on purchases for 2 years. You get free credit. The cards are already making huge amounts from charging the supplier or retailer interest whenever you use their cards.
If they have to be more competitive there, then why not here ?
We are being ripped off.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Julie, thanks for contacting us about the RBC Visa Platinum card, and its 5.90% interest rate promotion. You can get this rate for 30 months but you’ll need to follow the link on our site, because this is a special rate that the bank offers those who apply via their partners (like us). It may be that the agreement RBC sent you was the standard boilerplate, and isn’t updated for all the bank’s latest running offers. Customer service representatives may not be universally updated either. Also remember that the 5.90% rate is only for cash advances and balance transfers, and is not considered the overall interest rate. The rate for purchases, which is usually displayed more prominently, is 19.99%.

As long as you began the process from this link, you should be good to go. On our side, it shows the 5.90% for 30 months promotion just fine, but let us know if you’re still having issues, and we’d be happy to follow up.

GreedyRates Staff

Michele says:

Hey there! So I have been offered 2 promotions and I’d like to see what makes sense and is ok to do. My CIBC card is offering a balance transfer at 0% at 10 months. My MBNA card is offering a 0.99% balance transfer for a year. I do carry a balance on my MBNA and I already did a balance transfer last year, my due date for that promotion is up in October. Since my CIBC has a higher balance, could I do the balance transfer from my CIBC onto my MBNA and then after take advantage of moving all that over to the CIBC balance transfer?

GreedyRates says:

Hey Michele, thanks for your question. We think that you should put as much of your balance as possible on the CIBC card first, and then use all of your discipline to pay off this balance before accruing any interest at all. If you cannot, that’s totally fine, because then MBNA can work as your backup. This also works better because of your current balance with MBNA. Come October, if you need to, you can take advantage of MBNA’s offer. Basically, your plan is sound, but you should simply switch the order of the cards you’ll use. Assuming that you work hard to pay down your balance, you should end up with less total interest in the end. Let us know if you have any additional questions!

GreedyRates Staff

Jan says:

I was looking for information on paying down debt and came your site and find it very informative. Does greedyrates have any financial affiliation with any of the institutions it mentions in this or any other of your articles?

GreedyRates says:

Hey Jan, thanks for your question! We try to be as transparent as possible when describing our relationship with the issuers we review. We do have financial affiliation with some of these entities, as you can see from the advertisements on the side of GreedyRates’ pages. However, this does not prevent us from sharing our own personal impartial views and opinions about their products. If a card has positive attributes, we give praise where praise is due, and if it has negative attributes, we warn customers of these downsides (an example is the Canadian Tire Mastercard review). What’s more, we compare different credit cards side by side in clear tables, making it easy for readers to see the differences from one card to the next. If you have any further questions, we’d be happy to answer as soon as possible. Thanks very much!

GreedyRates Staff

Brenda Cook says:

I am interested in transferring a balance of $5000 to a low interest card. I also need one that allows automatic charges every month as I have several of those. I know my credit score is not very high. Any suggestions?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Brenda, thanks for your question.

MBNA will approve your application with your creditworthiness in mind, but given a healthy financial history, a transfer of $5,000 seems likely. Even if your credit score is lower, don’t worry: MBNA often approves customers that have weaker scores or rocky credit history.

If the automatic charges you’re referring to are automatic debits from your account, then you should know that only one-time balance transfers are eligible for the 0% rate, so you might be better off telling your lender to charge you the entire sum, and then transferring it to the Platinum Plus. If not, please disregard. The Platinum Plus is a credit card and can make automatic purchases, but again, avoid carrying a balance. That is not what this card was designed for.

Good luck in your application – if you need any more assistance let us know and we will be happy to provide. Thanks.

GreedyRates Staff

Sarah says:

I want to apply to MBNA. But I read a lot of bad reviews about MBNA online. Is there any truth to that?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Sarah!

Thanks for asking your question, we will do our best to answer it. As far as issuers go, there are really none that are better or worse than others. Each is governed by strict laws that protect customers like you.

The best way to determine which is best is simply by comparing their credit cards. MBNA, as an issuer, has some of the best offers we’ve seen among the others available in the marketplace, which is the reason we’ve taken so much time to review their cards.

Among the MBNA products on Greedyrates, the only disappointment you may experience is in picking a card that isn’t suited to your needs. Otherwise, if you find one that looks good, you can trust that you’ll get exactly what is written in our reviews.

We hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Jan says:

I am looking to transfer a balance of $2600 to another card with a very low or no interest rate. I have also been offered to increase my credit limit from $3000 to $5000 without any complications of reapplying. My husband does not have a card at all. Would it be best for him to apply for one as he makes the most and then transfer my balance to his, avoiding paying interest for a year? What would be the charge then if we were to use the new credit card for a necessary purchase? Also does greedyrates have any financial affiliation with any of these institutions? I am looking for completely unbiased advice and as you can suspect, I don’t have much faith in banks to do what is best for me.Thank you.

GreedyRates says:

Hey Jan, thanks for reading GreedyRates!

Let’s see if we can help you out a bit. We understand you and your husband currently have a $2,600 balance on your existing card, and the issuer has offered to help you by raising your credit limit. However, this does not solve the problem of high rates, only that you can now add to your debt.

We recommend you pick up the MBNA Platinum Plus for a couple reasons. You can use it to get 12 months of relief on the interest rate that you’re currently paying on that $2,600, and give your husband access to credit at the same time. Considering that your debts and incomes are shared, he should be the one to apply and request that the entire balance be transferred.

Now, do not cancel your other card! In the meantime, you can accept a higher credit limit on it and use it for purchases that you wouldn’t make with the Platinum Plus. This will let you slowly pay off your outstanding debt and make smart purchases at the same time.

Let us know if you have any concerns or need further guidance. Thanks for reading!

GreedyRates Staff

Pamela says:

I am looking at the MBNA Platinum Plus MasterCard 0% for 12 months $0 Balance & Deposit Transfers
A friend has told me this card makes the insurance mandatory and that’s where most of his monthly charges came from which was more than the interest. Is this true? It says nothing about insurance costs in the comparatives above
thanks in advance

GreedyRates says:

Hi Pamela, thanks for your question.

Regarding your concerns about the MBNA Platinum Plus card, we’re not sure where your friend got his or her information but we have never heard of MBNA charging customers for the insurance that comes as a default.

The basic travel protection and rental car coverage that comes with the card is a common feature among several other credit cards – and we are not certain that these features cost cardholders money. To be sure, check with customer service at MBNA and let us know what you find. We think a short conversation will clear up your doubts for good. Thanks again!

GreedyRates Staff

Judy says:

Hi Staff, thanks for your knowledge on credit card. I would be interested in transferring my credit card balance to another card. From what i read you mention MBNA Platinum Plus MasterCard at 0% for 12 months. First of all, should i at the end of the 12 months period do a “deposit transfer? Second, Can this be done online? Can I do the same for a business credit card/

GreedyRates says:

Hey Judy, thanks for your great questions.

We understand that you want to transfer a balance from one card to another, and you were correct in choosing the MBNA Platinum Plus MasterCard as your optimal solution.

When applying to transfer your balance, MasterCard and MBNA will approve you for both the specific amount that can be transferred, as well as your credit limit with the new card. For one year, interest will not accrue on the balance you carry, but cross the one year boundary and the APR will quickly change from 0% to a higher rate.

If you are still carrying a balance at the end of the 12-month introductory period, you apply to do another balance transfer to a new introductory rate card. This can all be done online or over the phone. If this isn’t possible, then you might want to look into a deposit transfer. Whether or not you should transfer your remaining balance to a checking account and take care of it from there depends on the account’s rate, versus the post-bonus period MBNA rate.

Your question about business credit cards is also interesting. While what you can get approved for depends on your current credit score, we think you will enjoy the RBC Visa CreditLine for Small Businesses. The card has an extremely low interest rate and also brings value in the form of points that accrue with purchases and a flexible line of credit. You can look at all of the credit cards for businesses that we recommend to find the best fit for your circumstances.

We hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Jenny says:

Thank you for this article, it’s very helpful. I did the inquiry to get my rate for the MBNA TrueLine Credit Card and got 9.99% (out of a possibility of 5.99%, 7.99%, 9.99%, 12.99% and 14.99%).
What does that say about my credit strength in your opinion? I unfortunately don’t have the time or funds to get my credit report before making a rather urgent application… Thanks for your help!

GreedyRates says:

Hi Jenny, great questions and comments!

While it isn’t totally necessary to check your credit report before applying for a new credit card, it should be noted that applying may affect your credit score, and that by checking it beforehand you’re able to better understand your chances of approval and also at what rate. This gives you a bit more foresight, but it’s ok that you didn’t check. While every card issuer is different, that MBNA quoted you at 9.99% probably means your credit score is relatively healthy. If you’re not happy with that, we recommend taking advantage of one of the many free credit report services out there to learn what may be stopping you from increasing your score and then putting what you learn into action.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Colin O says:

This site never fails to inform. Great work! One question, however. Are any of these low interest rate cards also paired with a high limit? I am looking to do a balance transfer of approximately $5000, and if these cards are all low limit cards, a balance transfer won’t help me much. Any ideas?

GreedyRates says:

Hey Colin!

We really appreciate your comments and are glad you enjoy the site.

To address your question, we’re happy to report that the MBNA Platinum Plus card may suit your needs well. Credit and balance transfer limits run up to $100,000 on this card, depending on what you’re approved for. Plus, for those who transfer balances from other cards, MBNA offers a beneficial 0% interest rate for a full year.

Thanks and best of luck!

GreedyRates Staff

Judy says:

Hi, thanks for this great info. Once the year is over, what will be the interest rate?
Thank you

GreedyRates says:

Hey Judy, thanks for your inquiry.

Regarding the interest rate on balance transfers, after the year-long promotion has concluded, it will go from 0% to the standard rate of 21.99%. One must understand that the only 0% rate during the promotion is the interest on balance transfers that were made in the first 90 days of membership. Purchases, cash advances and other functions of the card still accrue interest.

The Platinum Plus is largely for providing shelter from high rates accompanying your largest debts, and not to use as a normal credit card. If you can’t pay back the full balance over the promotional period, you can do another balance transfer, request an extension from MBNA, and take other courses of action as well. When the time comes, we’re here to help.

GreedyRates Staff

Ryan says:

Hello I’m new to the credit card world. I was looking for something that has a no annual fee, low fixed interest rate, and that builds up my credit. And maybe something if possible with cash back. Is there a credit card that has that all?

GreedyRates says:

Hey Ryan!

What a great question. Let’s see if we can help you out.

While it’s hard to find a card that “has it all”, there are some great options that will serve your needs well – even without prior knowledge of your current credit score. Since you mentioned first that you’re looking for something with no annual fee and low interest rate, one of the best cards in that category is the American Express Essential Credit Card, which has no annual fee and a fixed rate of 8.99% on all purchases – including cash advances! (which usually range around a 20% interest rate). We estimate that this card will save you over $1300 a year on interest, something that a new cardholder can definitely appreciate.

For a card with cash back, know that most will come with the interest rates standard among the industry’s best. Expect around 19% if cash back is your primary goal. Since you are new to the credit card world, we recommend you start with a basic card that makes it easy to manage your finances (low rates, no annual fees). The Amex Essential mentioned above is great, but for the single purpose of establishing credit, the Secured Visa from Home Trust (no annual fee) is also great. You will be approved no matter your current credit score, and given the chance to build credit quickly, provided you are responsible with your finances.

Good luck!

GreedyRates Staff

Michele says:

I love coming to this site. Always informative and honest! Love it! I did the MBNA balance transfer last year based on this advice and am just using it to pay my balance off. However, I won’t be able to pay it off in full. Can I do another balance transfer or is that not a good idea?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Michele,

You can absolutely get another MBNA Platinum Plus MasterCard at 0% for 12 months. However, because no banks allow balance transfers form one of their own cards to another of their cards, you’ll have to do what’s called a “deposit transfer”. Once you get your card, simply request MBNA to do a deposit transfer into a Canadian checking account of your choice. MBNA will transfer the sum from your new Platinum Plus credit card to your checking account at 0% for 12 months. You will then use the money now in your checking account to pay down your balance on the old MBNA Platinum Plus credit card.

Hope that helps!

GreedyRates Staff

virginia chubo says:

I have MNBA master card. they changed me 1% transfer fee And i pay 1% of what i owe goes to my payment every month.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Virginia,

That correct. You pay 0% interest, however each month you pay the greater of 1% of your balance or $5. Since htere is no interest, 100% of your payment goes towards paying down your balance.

GreedyRates Staff

Nika says:

I am interested in applying for the MBNA true line credit card – and while doing some research I came across your article. My question is wouldn’t inquiring a rate from MBNA on the card impact score? Since in order for them to give me a low rate, they have to look at my history? I would also assume that by not providing my sin card, the rate would probably be the highest, which defeats the whole purpose of getting pre-approved interested rate.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Nika,

MBNA performs what’s called a “soft” inquiry, which does not impact your score at all. It’s the same type of inquiry a bank might use to pre-approve its customers. Only “hard” inquiries impact your score.

Not providing your SIN should not impact your interest rates at all. So long as the lender can identify you and pull your score and history without your SIN, you should get assigned an interest rate and credit line reflective of your credit worthiness.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Nigel says:

When referring to the ‘balance transfer card’ in the second last paragraph above, which card are you referring to exactly?? Thanks!

GreedyRates says:

Hi Nigel,

We were speaking generally about any balance transfer card. Try to keep one card specifically for balance transfers, and make any new purchases on a separate credit card.

The reason we make that recommendation is as follows. Most Canadian credit card issuers use the proportional payment allocation method. As a result, if you have a balance on your credit card at 0% and other balances at 19%, when you pay your credit card statement, the issuer will allocate your payment to each balance based on the proportion each balance represents of the total balance on the card. As a result, you won’t be able to pay down your high interest balance until your low interest balance is paid down completely.

Hope that helps and was clear enough,

GreedyRates Staff

Carol O'Blenis says:

I am looking for a no fee, fixed low interest rate credit card. Does one exists? Promotional rates dont interest me they just raise it afterward whatever and whenever

GreedyRates says:

Hi Carol,

The Alterna Platinum Plus MasterCard above offers a 9.99% fixed annual interest rate (forever) on purchases and balance transfers, with no annual fee.

Hopefully that’s what you were looking for!

GreedyRates Staff