Desjardins Modulo® Visa Card Review
Desjardins’ Modulo® Visa is the rare Canadian credit card that not only provides low interest rates in multiple categories, but also generates rewards on purchases and offers other appealing and uncommon perks to boot. Travellers going on short trips will get complete coverage from the card, even for medical emergencies, and members can protect their new purchases and mobile devices as well. Given its relatively low annual fee, the Modulo® Visa offers an enticing alternative to other low-rate cards with comparatively sparse benefit packages.
The standout feature of the Modulo® Visa is its trifecta of low interest rates—10.90% on purchases, cash advances, and balance transfers. This makes it competitive with industry-best low rate credit cards such as the True Line® Gold Mastercard® from MBNA and the American Express Essential card, both of which offer 8.99% on purchases and balance transfers. But although both of those cards offer lower interest rates in those interest rate categories than the Modulo®, neither offers the added rewards and benefits that the Modulo® does.
This unusual combination of features makes the Desjardins card a multipurpose financial tool: cardholders can consolidate debts into one low interest rate; then use the card for daily purchasing power; carry a balance with less severe consequences than most cards; and earn rewards on top of everything else.
- Low 10.90% interest rate on purchases, balance transfers and cash advances
- $50 annual fee
- 1.00% BONUSDOLLARS® on all purchases
- Mobile device insurance
- Travel insurance for 3 days
- Purchase protection (90 days) and extended warranties (1 year)
Desjardins cards are typically known for their insurance benefits, and though the Modulo® Visa emphasizes its low interest rates above all else, its insurance coverage deserves a shout-out. Cardholders on short trips (3 days or less) are covered with emergency medical insurance, trip cancellation insurance, coverage for their baggage and even travel assistance—a concierge-like service available 24/7 for emergencies like an urgent cash advances, lost documents, and more. It’s important to emphasize that if the trip length exceeds 3 days, none of this coverage applies.
Another highly valuable and unusual perk in our mobile age is Mobile Device Insurance, which effectively covers all damage and theft (up to $1,000) on mobile phones paid for with Desjardins cards (including the Modulo®). The coverage applies whether cardholders buy the phone on a plan and pay monthly or purchase it outright. Purchase protection and extended warranties work to safeguard other purchases as well, providing coverage for 90 days on new items and manufacturer warranties by up to an additional year (though this is a far more common feature).
Finally, the Modulo® Visa also earns Desjardins BONUSDOLLARS® on every purchase, at a rate of 1.00%. BONUSDOLLARS® are rewards that can be redeemed on various travel experiences, activities, events, merchandise and gift cards. You can learn more about Desjardins BONUSDOLLARS® via our Loyalty Program Bible.
Who’s the Card For?
The Modulo® Visa is a good fit for cardholders who either need to escape high interest rates on existing debts or believe that they may carry a balance on their credit card from time to time (thus necessitating a low interest rate on purchases).
Though its $50 annual fee might be initially off-putting to those in search of a low interest card, the amount that cardholders can save with lower interest payments can easily make up for that fee. For example, if cardholders transfer $5,000 to Desjardins and it takes them a year to pay it off, they’ll accrue about $545 in interest during that year (not considering payments they made during that time). Compare that to how much they’d accrue if they kept the $5,000 balance on a 20.00% rate card ($1,000 in interest payments) and that’s an extra savings of $455 in interest—far more than a $50 annual fee.