Has Chase Completely Withdrawn Its Credit Cards from Canada?

Has Chase Completely Withdrawn Its Credit Cards from Canada?

Last updated on July 15, 2018 Views: 5311 Comments: 16

Once the news went public that Chase would no longer accept new applicants for its Amazon Visa card earlier this year, finance-savvy Canadians saw the writing on the wall. A few sharp GreedyRates readers noticed immediately in early September when the application links for Chase’s Marriott Rewards card stopped working, unceremoniously disappearing from the provider’s listings.

We contacted Chase’s American media rep to see if she could clarify the situation for Chase’s existing Canadian cardholders, but she seemed unaware that Chase rewards had ever had operations in Canada of any kind.

Official statement or no, it seems we can safely assume that Chase is shutting down its Canadian credit card portfolio. So, will there be fallbacks for current cardholders?

What Does This Mean for Recent Applicants & Existing Cardholders?

For those of you who don’t remember or aren’t aware of the Chase Marriott Rewards card (R.I.P.), here’s a quick rundown of what it was all about and why Canadians are up in arms over losing out on its benefits:

  • The Marriott credit card came with a tremendous welcome bonus. New members got 30,000 points just for using their cards once without any minimum spending. That’s about equal to a four-night stay in a tier 1 hotel!
  • Absolutely no foreign transaction fees; a major boost for travelers and international shoppers.
  • Yearly free night anniversary present
  • Annual fee waived for the first year
  • Elite status
  • 5 points for every $1 spent at Marriott locations, 2 points at select locations, and 1 point everywhere else

As you can see, that was a pretty juicy offer, and if Chase does end up abruptly cancelling all of its Canadian accounts, card swipers everywhere will be anxious to fill the void. Here are some alternatives to the Chase credit card that offer similar benefits:

The Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card (SPG)

The Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card is a good starting replacement for the Marriott Rewards card. It offers great incentives for travelers including:

  • $250 statement credit for purchasing $1,500 for the first 3 months and $200 for Starwood and Mariott purchases on your card for the first 6 months.
  • 2 points received for every $1 spent at participating locations and 1 point for everything else
  • An annual free night upon hitting the $40,000 spend mark
  • Upgrade to the Gold status when you hit the $30,000 annual spending mark
  • 10,000 points for referring a friend

Some of these benefits aren’t as exciting as the Marriott card, while others outshine it by a lot.

MBNA’s Best Western Rewards Mastercard

MBNA’s Best Western Rewards Mastercard also has some great benefits that make it a hot pick for Canadians. Sign up and receive:

  • No annual fee, ever!
  • 5 points for every $1 spent at Best Westerns and 1 point everywhere else
  • 20,000 in welcome bonus points just for signing up and making any purchase. We’re talking a package of Rolos. A package of Rolos is enough to stay totally free overnight at the tier 3 hotel of your choice (or longer for lower tier accommodations).
  • Upgrade to Gold status

These perks, in addition to a super-low balance transfer rate of 1.99% for the first 10 months, will make a transition over to the MBNA card very profitable.

Rogers Platinum Mastercard

The Rogers Platinum Mastercard is a no-fee card with a 1.75% flat cash back rate. That’s a tremendous acceleration from the rest of the competition that averages around the 0.25% range. Foreign transaction fees are subsidized via a 4% cash back rate on purchases made abroad, and new cardholders are greeted with a $25 welcome bonus.

FIDO Mastercard

Rogers FIDO Mastercard provides a slight twist on its Platinum card:

  • $50 cash back welcome bonus (rather than $25)
  • 1.5% cash back (rather than 1.75%)
  • No annual fee
  • 4% cash back on foreign purchases
  • No caps or limitations on how much cash back you can earn

Will Amex Scoop Its Own Marriott Partnership?

We can’t help but wonder if American Express will capitalize on this opportunity to grab many of Chase’s forsaken Canadian cardholders, who rely on the hotel-credit card partnership for major savings on travel expenses. This is more than a random guess given Amex’s latest business dealings, which appointed the credit card company as the sole distributor of Hilton cards starting in January.

And let’s not forget that last year American Express launched the Starwood Preferred Guest card after Starwood was bought by Marriott. So it’s a seemingly natural move for Amex to scoop up the vacant Marriott partnership in Canada.

Even if Chase decides to pull the plug on Canadian account holders, Canadians aren’t up the creek without a paddle. There are plenty of great card options out there.

Article comments

16 comments
Debta says:

I received a notice that I have $1.20 coming to meet in points if I don’t contact them so they can send me a check I will be charged $25 annually. I’ve tried to contact them hours on the phone without any luck

BL says:

I’d be interested to know if shutting this card down had anything to do with cards being compromised? I’ve had my Amazon.ca card compromised on 3 separate occasions. I have other cards that I use to shop online with and never had this problem, just my Chase one…..and 3 times with 3 different account numbers?? That’s crazy. The worst part is they didn’t even catch it, I did. I check my accounts pretty regularly to make sure all the purchases are what they should be and that’s how I caught fraudulent transactions. And on top of all that, the points didn’t even add up properly. This card is the worst.

donna demauro says:

Curious to know if Canadian card holders of the Chase Amazon.ca are legally bound to pay their card balances now that they have bailed?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Donna, great question. We’re sorry to see Chase go from Canada, as there are many who loved using their cards to save on foreign transaction fees and shop at Amazon. We find it hard to believe that Chase would let these customers’ balances go unpaid, however, as the application and contingent agreements made are legitimate regardless of Chase’s presence in Canada. Understand that you entered into a contract with Chase when you opened the card, so you’re still obligated to pay the balance unfortunately. Good luck, and you can read more about the situation and your options here.

GreedyRates Staff

Sooke says:

I credit Chase with being the first card to end the 2.5% foreign currency surcharge. Thank God Rogers Platinum also waives the fee. I wonder if they will drop that benefit now that Chase is gone. I think Rogers and Tangerine are the only cards that don’t charge 2.5%. Are there any others?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Sooke, thanks for your comment! Your observation is right on the money–Chase set the market expectation that credit cards would be available to remove these pesky fees, but abandoned the model just as demand for their cards reached a peak. Fortunately, we have the Rogers card to pick up where they left off.

As far as other cards go, we’re sorry to inform you that the Tangerine card doesn’t exempt you from these fees anymore. They used to charge just 1.50%, and may have negated them entirely before, but now they’ve raised the fee back to 2.50%. The only other card you use to get shelter from these fees (besides Rogers’) is the Home Trust Preferred Visa. You can learn more by reading our full Home Trust Preferred Card review, or you can apply for the card directly via this link.

GreedyRates Staff

Bart says:

Received our Letter from Chase dated Jan 15, 2018. Our Marriott Rewards card with Chase will close March 15, 2018. Card cancelled! Annual fee paid April 1, 17 through to Dec 31, 17 will be returned prorated as a credit. Sorry to see them go it was a great card! Called them it was a business decision!

Michael says:

You can check out our article on the Marriott and Amazon cards’ cancellations here: https://www.greedyrates.ca/blog/chase-sounds-final-death-knell-amazon-marriott-cards/

GreedyRates Staff

R Nalluri says:

Hi,

Fido Mastercard offers 1.5% flat cash back rate(Not 5%)

thx

GreedyRates says:

Hi R, thanks for the correction. You’re right, the Fido MasterCard is 1.50% and we have changed our mistake in the article above. Thanks again!

Akshay Kalaria says:

Should people who already have the credit card currently be spending the points so they do not expire or become useless? I don’t have many (50000) most from initial sign up.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Akshay, thanks for the interesting question. We’re sure that other readers who still have Chase cards in Canada will also be curious to hear the answer. Chase has made no announcement that their cards will be unusable in the near future. That said, though they still may work, we recommend spending your rewards points and picking up a similar card from another issuer. Scotiabank announced that they are acquiring much of Chase’s credit infrastructure in Canada, and while some of our readers report that the transition was smooth, for others it wasn’t. Regardless, there are cards that are just as powerful and flexible as any that Chase previously offered, including the ones listed in the above article.

For example, if you had the Marriott Rewards card, now that the bonus they offered is expired, the Starwood Preferred Guest card outperforms it in every way. Instead of the Chase Amazon card, which hasn’t been in circulation for months, check out the Rogers Platinum card. You’ll likely earn more when ordering through Amazon with it anyway. If you need any further help, just comment and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

GreedyRates Staff

Ryan Nelson says:

Your Marriott rewards points are attached to your Marriott account, not the Chase account, so they won’t go away. No need to hurriedly blow them all just because the Chase card is probably going away.

It is also important to note something that you are missing about the relationship between Marriott and SPG. You can link your two reward accounts and you can easily and instantly transfer your points between the two reward programs, and THEY ARE NOT EQUAL. SPG points are worth 3x what the Marriott points are, so the 25,000 sign up bonus for the SPG AMEX card equals a whopping 75,000 Marriott points!!! So if you are a Marriott rewards member, get the SPG card NOW!

GreedyRates says:

Hey Caolan! Thanks for the shoutout, we love hearing that readers enjoy what we do. If you’re looking for a good travel card that isn’t an AmEx, but also isn’t exactly a rewards card, you might consider the Rogers MasterCard. It’s a great combination of cash back card that works well at home and abroad, by offering 1.75% on purchases made in CAD and 4.00% on purchases in a foreign currency.

If a rewards travel card is what you’re after, there are few deals better right now than the BMO Rewards World Elite card. It lets you earn big on daily purchases, and use the points on any travel expense, or any airline. Additionally, you’ll get 20,000 bonus points and airport lounge access, which is a nice perk for a frequent traveler (or travelers). It’s too bad you don’t like AmEx, because the Starwood Preferred Guest card is another we highly recommend. Take a look and thanks for reading.

GreedyRates Staff

Ron says:

Hey. Just received my letter in the mail today. Duh. It appears that this has been coming for some time now but we had not heard a peep. A couple of years ago Marriott cancelled the Travel insurance program they have/ had for Canadians, specifically. Now this, just for Canadians. I would hope that all of us from the great white north would now have enough reason to stay away from Marriotts. If your consider that Platinum members,we are, spend 75 plus nights at their hotels yearly and multiply that by the number of Canadians being told to cut up their cards, it seems like a lot of nights that will be lost$$$$$$. I’ll have to drop in to my local Scotia branch to see what they are offering or check out the SPG option. Just venting.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Ron, thanks for leaving your comment with us. We understand and share your frustration with Chase, and will be happy to suggest some alternatives. To substitute for the hotel benefits that the Marriott card used to grant, we believe the Starwood Preferred Guest card to be even better, especially with its excellent perks and ability to transfer your points to a long list of other rewards programs, even airline plans. You can learn more by checking out our full Starwood Preferred Guest Card review, or you can apply for the card via this link.

The Best Western card listed on our site is also a solid deal, but we encourage you to do a little more in-depth research before taking us at our word. To learn more about it you can read our full Best Western Mastercard review, or you can apply for the card via this link.

Finally, check out this article below, which is specifically for finding other options in the wake of Chase’s recent string of discontinuations. Good luck!

https://www.greedyrates.ca/blog/chase-sounds-final-death-knell-amazon-marriott-cards/