10 Best Cash Back Credit Cards in Canada for 2016

thebestcashbackcreditcardsincanada.jpg

Just walking into your bank and taking whatever cash back credit card they offer you could be a major rip off. If your family spends a reasonable $25,000 annually on credit, you would earn $125 in cash with the worst cards. The top ranked card on my list would earn you $411 - that's more than 3x the cash - big difference, eh?

Travel rewards have become increasingly complicated and less rewarding over time, so Canadians everywhere are starting to embrace the simplicity of cash and their credit card reward of choice.

Simplicity doesn't mean that choosing a cash back card is easy though!

There are still annual fees, different bonus spending categories, insurance coverage, and other perks to consider. Not to mention subtle details like how the cash back is paid to you (statement credit, cheque, direct deposit), caps and tiers, and how often your cash is paid out. I've taken all these things into account with my comprehensive rating system - you won't find that anywhere else.

Canadian Cash Back Credit Card Rankings for 2016

48 cash back credit cards were considered for this comparison - the top 10 are listed in the table below from best to worst. Please note that the table scrolls horizontally by using the slider at the bottom.

  Credit Card
Apply MBNA Rewards World Elite MasterCard
Apply BMO CashBack World Elite MasterCard
Apply Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite
Apply CIBC Dividend Visa Infinite
Apply Rogers Platinum MasterCard
Apply SimplyCash Preferred Card from American Express
Apply Capital One Aspire Travel World Elite MasterCard
Apply Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card
Apply President's Choice Financial World Elite MasterCard
Apply SimplyCash Card from American Express
Overall Score Cash On $25,000 Spend1 Cash On $100K Spend2 Annual Fee Sign Up Bonus Value3 Insurance Score Perks Score
5.00 $411 $1,911 $89 $100 2.9 3.6
4.56 $318 $1,630 $120 $0
up to
$250
*
5.0 2.5
4.32 $401 $1,901 $99 $0 2.4 2.1
4.14 $376 $1,621 $99 $0 2.6 2.5
3.94 $409 $1,721 $29 $25 0.0 3.6
3.92 $296 $1,421 $79 up to
$400
2.6 3.8
3.88 $225 $1,350 $150 $300 3.7 4.0
3.82 $338 $1,350 $0 $0 0.5 5.0
3.64 $338 $1,350 $0 $0 1.1 3.9
3.50 $313 $1,250 $0 up to
$250
1.1 4.2

(+/-) Footnotes:

* Limited time promotion ending soon.
1. $25,000 in annual spending works out to $2,083 in monthly spending which is achievable for a typical Canadian family funneling most of their spending through their credit card. The cash back shown is calculated by splitting spending sensibly across spending categories like groceries, gas, drugstore, travel, bills, and everyday spending. All spending bonuses, tiers, limits, and caps are taken into account in these calculations. Sign up bonuses are NOT included in these numbers, so that will be an extra perk for you. Finally, the annual fee is deducted from the cash back earned giving you the true cash back earned for the year.
2. $100,000 in annual spending works out to $8,333 in monthly spending which is too high for most families. I have included these numbers to better evaluate cards and give an advantage to cards who don't have spending caps or limits. It also allows cards that have a good tier system to shine at higher spending levels. The cash back shown is calculated by splitting spending sensibly across spending categories like groceries, gas, drugstore, travel, bills, and everyday spending. All spending bonuses, tiers, limits, and caps are taken into account in these calculations. Sign up bonuses are NOT included in these numbers, so that will be an extra perk for you. Finally, the annual fee is deducted from the cash back earned giving you the true cash back earned for the year.
3. The sign up bonus value is the maximum possible dollar value you can get from the bonus if you take full advantage of it. So, with a 5% gas and grocery bonus for 6 months with a $250 cap - $250 would be the value.

The Top 3 In Detail

1) MBNA Rewards World Elite MasterCard

This card has been around since 2011, but is often overlooked. It is actually so good that it is the secret weapon of cash back credit card holders - a straight 2% cash back on all purchases with no strings, bonuses, limits, or caps and you can get paid whenever and however you want - SWEET.

Why then is it overlooked? Maybe it's because it is marketed as a travel rewards card - but why would you redeem your points for travel when you can redeem them at the same 2% rate for cash? Or, maybe it's because it doesn't have a flashy 4% bonus on gas and groceries like the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite. But, when you crunch the numbers, it turns out a flat 2% cash back earning rate is almost always better anyway.

If you look closely at the scores above, you'll see many of the top cards are very closely ranked. Then, you'll see that this card beats them all by a wide margin - that's because it is hands down the best cash back credit card in Canada!

Why You Want It:

  • Top flat cash back rate of 2%, the highest of any card.
  • 10,000 bonus points as a sign up bonus which equates to $100 in free money.
  • Extra cardholders are free so your whole family can rack up the rewards quickly.
  • No limits, tiers, or restrictions on how much cash you can earn.
  • Unlimited flexibility on how you get your rewards: cheque, bank deposit, statement credit, travel, gifts, gift cards, and more.
  • Strong insurance package including rare Price Protection that allows you to get refunded if you see a cheaper price on any product you might purchase anywhere.
  • Redeem your cash any time you want instantly.

I've had this card in my wallet since it launched in 2011 and use it as my primary credit card every day. In 2015, I redeemed $1052 myself from using it - you could do the same.

Apply Now

2) BMO CashBack World Elite MasterCard

At first glance, this newer card from BMO looks like a slightly lesser version of the #1 ranked card. It gives you a slightly lower 1.75% cash back rate on all purchases and a slightly higher $120 annual fee.

That's where the similarities end though because this card is extremely strong in insurance coverage and perks. It has double the extended warranty and purchase protection of most of its competitors, includes travel medical and trip cancellation insurance - which are both rare, and even comes with complimentary roadside assistance. The roadside assistance in particular is a great value if you are a road warrior and can ditch CAA or another paid coverage you might have. It also has top notch car rental insurance if you happen to rent vehicles frequently for work or another reason.

Why You Want It:

  • A high flat cash back rate of 1.75%.
  • 4% cash back for the first 4 months - capped at $250.
  • Free roadside assistance is included - BMO is the only issuer to offer this.
  • No limits, tiers, or restrictions on how much cash you can earn.
  • The best insurance package of any cash back card.
  • Amazing card for heavy drivers because of all the car rental and driving related perks.

Apply Now

3) Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite

Often hailed as the best cash back card in Canada, this card is still nothing to sneeze at. It really shines if you spend a lot on gas and groceries because the 4% bonus on those purchases is unmatched by any of its competitors. The 2% bonus on recurring bills is also quite unique and makes a good portion of most people's everyday spending applicable for a bonus.

The 1% regular rate for purchases is what drags it down in the rankings, but not by much. The only way to determine if this is the right card for you is to crunch your gas and grocery numbers and see if the bonus you earn there outweighs the straight 2% you'll earn with MBNA.

Why You Want It:

  • 4% cash back on gas and grocery spending - no one else comes close.
  • First year annual fee of $99 is often waived so you can try it out at no cost.
  • Good insurance package including 15 days travel medical - the highest of any in the top 3.
  • Very high $25,000 spending limits on bonus gas and grocery cash back.
  • First year annual fee of $99 is being waived for a limited time.

Apply Now

What Matters To You?

What you think is the most important feature of a credit card might not match my rankings exactly. So, I've broken down the top cards by popular features below to help you choose one that's right for you.

Getting The Most Money

If you want a cash back credit card, then chances are the amount of money it pays out to you on a yearly basis is pretty high up there on the importance scale. For some people, that may be all that matters - flexibility, fees, income requirements, perks, and insurance probably mean very little to you.

If this is the case, then you definitely want the MBNA Rewards World Elite MasterCard. A typical family spending $25,000 annually (about $2000/mth) will net $411 in cash after the annual fee is paid for. That's a very high 1.64% return on spending. In the first year, you'd earn $511 because of the $100 sign up bonus.

The Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite is a solid second choice. The 1% on regular purchases is a real bummer, but it turns out those massive 4% bonuses on gas and groceries really do lift the overall payout. A typical family spending $25,000 annually will earn net $401 in rewards annually.

Where You Spend Your Money

Many cards listed here give you bonus cash back on certain types of spending like gas, groceries, drugstore, bills, restaurants, and travel. If you spend most of your money on a small group of things that fit into these categories, then you could end up further ahead choosing a card that gives you a matching bonus.

The most popular card with good spending bonsues is the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite. It gives you 4% cash back on gas and grocery purchases and 2% cash back on recurring monthly bills - which is a very rare bonus. It only offers 1% cash back on everyday spending though, so it's best if you spend heavily on gas, groceries, and bills.

The new Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card is another great choice because it is the first and only card that allows you to choose which categories you earn bonus cash in. You can choose up to 3 categories to double your regular cash back from 1% to 2%. It also has no annual fee and no caps or limits on cash earned making it a great choice for many.

Avoiding Fees

As much as I try to convince people that annual fees aren't necessarily a bad thing if you get a much bigger reward return to make up for it, there are those who are dead set against ever paying a fee. I can understand that and fortunately there are still some good no-fee options.

If you went the most cash and a lot of extra flexibility being able to choose your own 2% bonus categories, then the Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card is what you want. Another major perk is that there are no limits to the amount of cash back you can earn - even in the bonus categories.

You can see my complete no fee cash back credit card rankings here.

Lower Minimum Income Needed

The SimplyCash Preferred from American Express is a great choice here. Most of the other top cards require at minimum $35,000 in personal income while the World and World Elite cards ask for $60-$70,000. The SimplyCash only requires $15,000 - so pretty much anyone with a job can qualify. Another possible choice would be the Rogers Platinum MasterCard that has no specific minimum - but that card only really shines if you have a Rogers or Fido service to pair with it.

One thing to remember about minimum incomes is that you can often still be approved for a credit card that has a minimum that is higher than what you are currently earning. As long as you have good credit and a good payment history, then they will usually assess your application on a case by case basis. If you don't appear to be high risk, they will likely approve you anyway. Your chances will vary by bank but if there is a card you really want, you might as well give applying a shot.

Great Perks And Insurance

The BMO CashBack World Elite MasterCard is the clear winner here. It offers 13 different types of insurance and is better than all the other cards in 6 of those categories - no small feat. Not only that, but it has complimentary roadside assistance, which very few other cards offer and concierge service.

The Capital One Aspire Travel World Elite MasterCard is another solid choice. It makes sense because it is a travel rewards card first and a cash back card second. It offers 11 different types of insurances with 4 of them being best in class along with great perks like a 40,000 point sign up bonus (worth $300 in cash or $400 in travel), concierge service, and it is one of the few cards that offers price protection on your purchases. It also comes with the priciest annual fee at $150. You can also redeem your cash any time as a statement credit, not just once per year.

Which One Will You Choose?

I'm wondering which of these cards you'd pick? If you have a cash back card already, would you consider upgrading to one of those listed above?

Finally, always remember that letting credit cards with rewards entice you into much higher spending and debt is NEVER worth it. Please only apply for these cards if you plan to pay them off in full every month.

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Comments

Ernesto
Ernesto's picture

I agree the MBNA is the best cash back card. There is only one Annoying aspect, that might be considered minor to some, but for “heavy users” that track spending and download transactions on a regular basis, it gets important. MBNA does not allow you to download transactions as needed. You can only download your full monthly statement once is posted. That means if you have 80 transactions in one month you, have to categorize all of them at once, unless you type them in your finance software regularly. Could be an irrelevant issue to some, but I’m still surprised they don’t offer this functionality (as all other cards I have). I contacted them and they said there are no plans to include it.

October 29, 2015 @ 2:11 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

That's an interesting missing feature that I probably would have never discovered. I've never been one to download transactions myself (just too busy to track at that level of detail) and if I did, I probably would do it once a month. 

Thanks for pointing it out Ernesto, because I know there are a lot of people who rely on financial software to budget and manage their finances!

October 29, 2015 @ 3:25 pm
No spam
No spam's picture

It all depends on what you spend on. Most of my purchases are for gas and groceries and I get 4% cash back on the visa momentum infinite which is way better than MBNA's 2%. I'm averaging $1200+/year cash back so far

November 04, 2015 @ 12:03 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Yes, it does depend. On how much total spending are you earning that $1200 with? As long as you've crunched the numbers and you get a better average rate of return with the Scotia card, then of course you should choose it. You'd need $60,000 in spending to get $1,200 with the MBNA card (not accounting for the annual fee).

If you're doing  up near 50% of your total spending on gas, groceries, and bills, then the Scotia card can net you more money. However, you still have reduced flexibility and less insurance and perks to deal with. For instance, if you use the Price Protection feature on the MBNA card smartly, you can earn another $500 per year.

November 04, 2015 @ 2:12 pm
Sarah
Sarah's picture

The only disadvantage of the Scotia Momentum Visa is that it doesn't include travel cancellation insurance. So if you travel, you are out of pocket that on each trip.

June 25, 2016 @ 9:37 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

There are several disadvantages:

  • Can only redeem cash once per year.
  • Can only redeem cash as a statement credit.
  • If you cancel before cashing out, you lose your entire balance.
  • You only get 1% cash on everyday purchases.
  • There is usually no sign up bonus and often the first year isn't free either.
  • Not accepted at Costco and soon Walmart (not a huge deal IMO - just use a no fee backup card).

It's definitely a very strong card, but there are some disadvantages.

June 26, 2016 @ 10:38 pm
marks
marks's picture

@ 4% that's about $30,000. You're spending that much on grocery and gas?

June 29, 2016 @ 8:02 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

I think he means $1,200 total across all spending categories. He didn't specify how much of the $1,200 is from gas and groceries.

June 30, 2016 @ 2:20 pm
Jeremy
Jeremy's picture

Brilliant tip! I was considering the MBNA card until I read this comment. I track my expenses diligently to the penny and download transactions every weekend. Not being able to do that is a deal-breaker. I would rather spend 20 minutes per week doing it than one hour once per month. Thanks for the heads up!

June 25, 2016 @ 12:32 am
nadeem
nadeem's picture

Copy and paste into excel

June 29, 2016 @ 5:34 pm
Jean
Jean's picture

MBNA has many drawbacks. Firstly all extra cards issued have the same number. This also means you can't track which spending goes to each card. It also means that if you gave a card to your university-bound child and they lose it while you're in France, all cards need to be cancelled. Or if a question is asked about unusual spending patterns ,you can't ID the culprit or if it's logical.
With the algorithms that spot unusual spending at Mastercard how are cards in four different hands supposed to be managed if they don't have different numbers like other providers do?
Their website doesn't even show who you issued cards to. So when your power-of -attorney or just plain forgetfullness kicks in you can't manage the pretty useless site.
If you like to manage personal business and personal expenses on different cards ,forget it.

So yes the rate is good, but the card is a LOT of work and you need a back-up card that actually works when there's a hiccup.

August 30, 2016 @ 2:27 pm
ken
ken's picture

BMO World Elite Cash back master card doesn't cover trip cancellation. I booked a trip in July 2016 and I called to make sure trip cancellation was covered, the answer was card holder's policy was updated to remove trip cancellation

September 04, 2016 @ 3:15 pm
Ashlee
Ashlee's picture

Hi Stephen, another great post!

We finally got the VISA momentum last February and so far we have been happy with it.
Have you looked into Tangerine's upcoming cashback card? I am not sure if it would rank as high as the MBNA or Momentum cards but for people not wanting to pay an annual fee, it seems like it could be a good option. Any thoughts?

October 29, 2015 @ 3:39 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

EDIT: The Tangerine card is now included in the rankings.

I haven't covered the new Tangerine card in these rankings because it hasn't officially been released yet but I have looked into it. It is definitely going to be a strong contender and probably the top no-fee cash back credit card. I don't believe it will be able to outpace the top cards listed here though except for very low spenders.

The 2% cash back covers the $89 annual fee after only $4,450 in spending on the MBNA Rewards World Elite, then you get your full 2% cash back from then on. Or, if your no-fee cash back card is earning you an average of 1.25% after you take spending bonuses into account, then you would start earning more cash back after spending $11,877 in a year. That's only $989 a month, which most families can spend VERY easily.

Not to mention all the amazing perks you get with a World Elite card that can save you thousands of dollars a year in insurance costs and potential losses (if you didn't have insurance).

October 29, 2015 @ 3:50 pm
Daniel @ SaveWithDan.ca's picture

Good to know, Stephen! Great post as always!

I'll keep an eye on this new king as my Scotia first year will come to a close. But I must say that it's hard to beat the 4% at groceries (the biggest expense we have besides rent), even if we don't have a car.

Thanks!

October 29, 2015 @ 4:36 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Depends on your spending habits. We buy so much of our produce from farmers, costco, and from oddball stores that probably aren't even categorized properly that it would be hard to get much bonus cash back even though we do spend a lot of money on food.

October 29, 2015 @ 4:41 pm
Patrick
Patrick's picture

Hi Stephen,
What do you think about the ATB Platinum Cash Rewards World MasterCard
"3% cash back on everything you buy at supermarkets, drug stores, gas stations, and home improvement stores"
The $120 annual fee is waived if you have the ATB Advantage account.

October 29, 2015 @ 4:44 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

That's definitely a good looking option Patrick. I considered nearly 40 credit cards when doing this analysis but that one escaped me because it is offered by ATB, which I believe is an Alberta credit union. I just tried to do a test application for it online and it only allows people who reside in Alberta to apply so it wouldn't be applicable to most Canadians.

In any case, I think the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite is better in most respects because it has a lower annual fee and a higher percentage on gas and groceries. The only major benefit here would be at drugstores. However, if you can get the annual fee waived because you are using the ATB Advantage account anyway, then I think it is probably a no-brainer to get this card along with it.

October 29, 2015 @ 4:53 pm
Doris Ryan
Doris Ryan's picture

Good information and advice, as always, Stephen. One point not yet mentioned is what my bank manager informed me of recently. She said every time an application for a credit card is made, one's credit rating goes down. I already have 3 different cards, one being the MBNA smart cashback along with 2 visas which are paid off monthly. I would definitely hesitate to apply for yet another. What are your thoughts on this?

Doris

October 29, 2015 @ 10:08 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Yes, every time you apply for a credit card it does have a (short) negative impact on your credit score. It does bounce back quite quickly. I'm not a true expert on credit scores, but I have done a lot of reading online and in forums about them.

What I do know is this: 3 credit cards is certainly not considered to be a lot. There are people who are very serious about collecting points and credit cards that have more than a dozen and still have excellent credit ratings. What matters is the following:

  • Don't apply for too many in a short period of time (I like to limit myself to 2 a year, but there are many people who do way more) so it looks like you are chasing credit and might be a flight or default risk.
  • Keep your old cards as long as possible without cancelling them (unless they have a fee) so that your average credit age is longer, which increases your score.
  • Always pay at least the minimum payment on time (I say pay it all off every month though!).
  • Keep your credit utilization ratio low overall and on a per-card basis. That means if you have $20,000 in total credit, you shouldn't be using more than a third of it at a given time (so about $7,000). Paying down your credit cards multiple times a month makes this much easier to do.
  • Don't have way too much credit. If you have $100,000+ of available unused credit, this can look pretty scary to lenders because you could charge a huge amount all at once and run, or get yourself underwater and go bankrupt. If this happens, simply call your lenders and ask that your limits be lowered or cancel some newer cards you no longer need with higher credit limits.
  • Don't apply for a bunch of cards near to when you will need an important loan like a mortgage. If you know you're going to be getting a new mortgage or renewing your mortgage soon, I'd definitely scale back on the credit card applications and look at lowering your available credit to reasonable levels

I really do need to get on to writing an in-depth article on this subject because I talk about credit cards so often. I'll need to interview some real credit experts before I'm comfortable that I will be giving people 100% accurate information though.

October 30, 2015 @ 10:03 am
Mark
Mark's picture

Hi Stephen...thanks for this valuable information!

Regarding the 2nd last point of not having too much unused credit......does that include available line of credits, or just available credit from credit cards? Just want to clarify. Thanks again!

November 22, 2015 @ 2:53 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

I would imagine it would depend on if the line of credit is secured or unsecured. Unsecured LoCs are just as dangerous as unused credit card limits to lenders for sure. Secured loans like a home equity line of credit (HELOC), is probably considered to be safer because they know your house (or whatever collateral you used) will cover you if you default on that loan.

I had a HELOC that gave me about $80,000 in available credit for about 5 years. After getting it, it did seem like credit card lenders gave me more conservative credit limits than before I had it. I was never declined for a new loan and my credit score remained pretty good throughout the time that I had it, but I think it did rise some after I get rid of it.

November 23, 2015 @ 8:49 am
Anthony
Anthony's picture

Any thoughts on the PCF World Elite Mastercard? We were recently upgraded, and think some of the new benefits, like car rental insurance, are pretty good for a no-fee card.

November 18, 2015 @ 5:52 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

It isn't a terrible card Anthony, especially if you buy your groceries exclusively at Loblaws grocery stores and your drugstore is already Shoppers Drug Mart. The 3% return is nice in that case. Then, the concierge service, rental car coverage, and medical insurance are pretty nice for a no-fee card.

However, qualifying for a World Elite card will be difficult for some and the MBNA and Capital One cards have much better insurance coverage overall and they are no-fee cards as well. In terms of rankings, it fell just outside the top 10 at number 12 out of 28 total cards considered in my no-fee credit card rankings found here.

I still think most of the cards with annual fees listed here are way better if you have the spending to maximize your cash back.

November 18, 2015 @ 10:38 pm
Megan
Megan's picture

Interesting article. You never mentioned the new Costco Cashback MasterCard. What do you think of it?

November 23, 2015 @ 1:07 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

It isn't good enough to make this list Megan, but it was included in the 38 cash back credit cards I considered for these rankings. It came in at #19, but I only included the top 10 in this article.

If you check out the No Fee rankings (linked in a comment just above yours), you will see that it comes in at #8 in those rankings.

November 24, 2015 @ 9:09 am
Jason
Jason's picture

Stephen,

You should check out the new Rogers MasterCard - it would be your #3 ranked card over $36,000 spend, and #1 up to $36,000. It has no annual charge if you pay your Rogers bill on it, and it is 1.75% cash back no limit.

November 26, 2015 @ 7:52 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Hi Jason, actually I did consider the Rogers MasterCard in my rankings. It isn't a true cash back credit card because the "cash" you earn can only be spent on Rogers products and services. That may make sense for some, but definitely not for all. It forces Rogers loyalty for one, which could be a money losing proposition.

I evaluate these cards on a lot of criteria, not just the amount of cash back they offer including the flexibility you have with your cash, what kind of free insurance coverage they offer, and what other perks they give you. This card did terrible in the flexibility and insurance categories. It came in ranked 17 of 38 overall.

November 27, 2015 @ 11:25 am
Jason
Jason's picture

Hi Stephen,

I agree with you it's for people who use Rogers anyway and aren't leaving ie. for cable, internet etc. One good thing it has, as do some of the other cards, is that you can redeem your points/dollars on a monthly basis if you have a recurring Rogers bill. Some of the other cards only give you your cash back annually, like the TD Visa Gold 1% cash back that I'm hardly using anymore (though that has good car rental insurance etc)..

November 27, 2015 @ 4:10 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Yes, absolutely that is a definite plus. I think it is a really good card for people who are always going to be Rogers customers and only care about their cash back rate of return because the 1.75% with no annual fee is pretty nice.

November 30, 2015 @ 9:41 am
Mark
Mark's picture

Hi Stephen

I just want to point out that it seems you can get a yearly statement credit by calling Rogers Bank with the Rogers Platinum MasterCard. If you scroll to the bottom of their web page, under point #2...

”You can redeem points towards an eligible purchase made with your Rogers Platinum MasterCard® equal to or greater than $20.00 and up to the full transaction amount, or the cash value of your rewards balance, whichever is less. Or, you can contact Rogers Bank once per year to receive an annual statement credit for the value of the rewards you have earned during that period.......”

I did call Rogers Bank to clarify and the customer service representative did confirm to me that is the case, which is you can redeem the cash back points towards your MasterCard statement once a year. In terms of flexibility it isn't that great as it is once a year for redeeming the cash back, but at 1.75% return, it doesn't seem so bad even if one does not use Rogers services and have to pay the $29 annual fee.

December 04, 2015 @ 10:00 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

That is a great piece of information Mark and will definitely help this card shoot up the rankings a fair bit. I don't have time to reevaluate everything right now, but anyone reading these comments should know that a 1.75% return at no annual fee is really good if you can truly redeem it for cash back.

I don't think I can truly consider this to be a no-fee card because you have to be a Rogers customer to make it so, but $29 is a very low annual fee for 1.75%.

December 07, 2015 @ 10:00 am
A tech guy in BC
A tech guy in BC's picture

Small correction - with Rogers Mastercard, instead of paying for Rogers services, you can request a cash payout once a year on your anniversary, so it is a true cash-back card.

Also, unlike most cards, Rogers MC has the advantage of it not dinging you an extra 2.5 cents on your exchange rate if you shop in USA (where gas is still a lot cheaper in spite of the low Canadian dollar). That is no small potatoes.

Finally, it also requires a lower financial threshold (only $15K annually minimum salary) to apply for it, so it is accessible to less affluent Canadians.

March 17, 2016 @ 2:13 am
A tech guy in BC
A tech guy in BC's picture

I misspoke - you do not get a cash payout, you get a bill credit.

March 17, 2016 @ 2:20 am
Melwyn Miranda
Melwyn Miranda's picture

Hi Stephen

CIBC has an interesting promo on their Visa Infinite where its gives you 4% cashback on ALL purchases up to $5000 made for the first 6 months. Comparing this to other cash back cards you get 4% only on gas and groceries.

February 05, 2016 @ 11:46 am
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

That's not a bad promo Melwyn, works out to $200 cash back if you spend the full $5000, pretty easy. However, the Amex SimplyCash Preferred listed above always gives you 5% cash back on ALL purchases for the first 6 months and has a higher cap. I believe the max bonus you can get is $400 cash back (so double). Don't have to wait for a promo period to get that either.

Unfortunately annual fee is not waived for the first year like with the CIBC card right now though. It also looks like the they are matching the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite now with 4% cash back on gas and groceries. Looks like the CIBC card has become a much better contender again.

February 05, 2016 @ 10:56 pm
Gilles
Gilles's picture

What some people may not realize, with the Scotia momentum Visa, is that grocery stores & gas stations sell GIFT CARDS to almost all other retailers.... So... example, if I walk into Canadian tire and spend $100 I get 1% Now, if I go to the Canadian Tire gas bar and buy a Canadian Tire Gift Card for $100 I now get 4% cash back. I now maximize almost ALL my purchases to 4%. Same when we go clothes shopping, we get gift cards and voila,!!!! 4% CB. Same when eating out at restaurants, or Tim Horton cards, etc..

Well worth the extra planning.

February 05, 2016 @ 8:08 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Yes, that's absolutely true Gilles. It isn't mentioned in this article but that is definitely something I've done myself many times (with the Smart Cash when it gave 3% at gas and grocery stores). The only trouble is you end up having to manage a lot of gift cards and worry about losing them or getting them stolen. Great way to increase your cash back though.

February 05, 2016 @ 10:58 pm
penelope
penelope's picture

so help me understand, this sounds brilliant....you get the 4% because the purchase of the gift card was made at a gas station, and that category gets 4 instead of 1?

December 10, 2016 @ 10:11 pm
Nizar
Nizar's picture

I think there's no big difference between CIBC dividend visa infinite and Scotia momentum visa infinite.

What do you think Stephen?

February 26, 2016 @ 2:14 am
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

The recent changes they've made to the dividend card are very nice Nizar, but I would still favour the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite because the 2% is on all recurring bill payments. That is likely to be a much higher amount than your Telus bill and Tim Horton's spending. Good alternative if you are already with CIBC and want to bank all in one place though.

February 27, 2016 @ 8:50 pm
Mark
Mark's picture

Hi Stephen

I just came across a relatively new credit card company that was launched mid 2015 by the name of Collabria. So far I determined (from internet searches) that they are offering their credit cards thru DUCA (VISA) and Kawartha Credit Union (MasterCard). Their no fee cash back credit cards (MasterCard and VISA) offers 2% cash back on gas and 1% for everything else which is quite decent (especially for a no fee VISA...MasterCard tend to have better rates). What I really like is that you can redeem the cash back towards your statement at anytime with no minimums. That's very flexible. From their webpage......"Use your points right away or build them up. 1 point equals 1% cash back!"

Also, I copied and paste the cash back rewards summary for their no fee MC and VISA below.

-Earn 1 point for every $1 spent on everyday purchases
-Earn DOUBLE points on dollars spent at gas stations
-1 point equals 1% cash back

Have you heard of Collabria? And if you have, what are your thoughts on them?

Thanks
Mark

March 18, 2016 @ 2:19 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

First I've heard of them - thanks for the heads up Mark.

March 18, 2016 @ 3:18 pm
Mark
Mark's picture

Hi Stephen

I also want to point out that you DO NOT have to be a member of Collabria's affiliated credit union to apply for these credit cards. I am not a member of their affiliated credit unions (I live in Alberta...DUCA and Kawartha are Ontario credit unions), but I was able to apply this past weekend and subsequently approved early this week. I just want to clarify that anyone can apply for these cards and not just members of their affiliated credit unions. Thank you.

Mark

March 18, 2016 @ 6:50 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Good to know - I will be factoring them into my rankings next time I do an update.

March 18, 2016 @ 11:07 pm
Urmila Karki
Urmila Karki's picture

Hi Stephen

Thank you very much for your analysis among the popular cash back credit card. I have a Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite for more than a year. I am not happy with that card. So I am planning to cancel that card. However I do not have an idea about the impact on my credit score if I cancel the card after cleared all my balance due on that card.

According to your analysis the MBNA Rewards World Elite MasterCard is the best because it pays 2% straight on any purchases, annual fee is less than Visa Momentum and give $100 sign up bonus, give extra card to family members free,no limits on how much cash you can earn, I can redeem my cash any time I want etc which vis momentum does not have that type of benefits.

So Can I cancel the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite credit card without affecting my credit score after cleared all my balance due?

Thank you

Urmi

April 12, 2016 @ 9:06 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Any time you cancel a credit card it will affect your score negatively in the short term, but not by very much. If you rarely cancel and apply for new cards then you will be completely fine and I wouldn't worry about it at all. However, if you apply for and cancel cards all the time, you would have reason for concern.

It's good to hang on to at least one older no-fee card and keep it active to increase the average age of your credit accounts which does help your score a little. However, I wouldn't recommend doing this with a card that has an annual fee because it just isn't worth it.

April 13, 2016 @ 4:53 pm
thaismomma
thaismomma's picture

How was BMO Cashback World Elite's Perks calculated at a rating of only a 2.1 if they're the only one with roadside assistance?

April 13, 2016 @ 11:41 am
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

There a lot of perks considered that are mostly related to sign up bonus, how cash back is paid out, how flexible the card is, etc. The roadside assistance is counted as a major perk for the card, but it doesn't have a lot of the other cash back related perks, hence the 2.1 rating. This is a fairly substantial perk though, so for those who would get a lot of value out of it, that card is definitely a very strong contender.

April 13, 2016 @ 4:51 pm
scor
scor's picture

Please check the MBNA perks, it does have a lot of the perks like Purchase Assurance, Extended Warranty Benefits, and Price Protection similar to the BMO card (though no travel and no roadside assistance). https://www.mbna.ca/credit-cards/card-benefits/

April 13, 2016 @ 12:00 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Yes, every single one of those perks was considered in these rankings. They aren't all listed here, but they are all included one by one in my ranking system. I have to condense things down to make it easy for people to read and understand otherwise it would just be too massive and confusing.

April 13, 2016 @ 4:54 pm
Roger Clarke
Roger Clarke's picture

My wife and I "share" a Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite card; for the first several years I "requested" our $129 fee [combined] be waived [by the branch manager] and it was. Then, last year the fee was automatically waived which saved the begging aspect. We consistently get at least over a grand back each year. Groceries at 4% are big plus, whereas being retired, gas is not significant. We also have a US funds Visa but it pays no rebate which is fine as we use it for just a few weeks annually.

May 06, 2016 @ 11:58 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

That's great that you've been able to get them to waive the fee each year! Sometimes they will do that but I'm surprised they have done it for you every year. I have an article coming out on that subject pretty soon actually.

May 09, 2016 @ 9:44 am
Lynda
Lynda's picture

As it is now mid July I was wondering if there is anything new to report on credit card offerings. Also I am looking for a card that will pay the best rate on the periodic purchase in a large quantity from the US that we make for our home-based business.

July 14, 2016 @ 5:53 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

The Rogers MasterCard is your best best because you also avoid the 2.5% currency exchange fee with that card.

July 15, 2016 @ 10:13 am
Tech Guy in BC
Tech Guy in BC's picture

Hi Stephen,

For Foreign travelers, Rogers is about to really sweeten the pot. Not only do you get your purchases at the straight exchange rate (instead of getting dinged 2.5 cents) but they are now increasing the reward on foreign purchases to a whopping 4%.

From the Rogers Bank site:

------begin-----

Foreign Currency Transactions

Coming soon: Earn 4% on purchases made in a foreign currency*

Great news! We’ve made the Rogers Platinum MasterCard® more rewarding. Starting August 17 you will be able to earn 4% cash back rewards on all your purchases made in a foreign currency – whether your purchase is made online or while travelling overseas. It’s the simple way to earn rewards faster when you travel and shop – with no caps or limits.

*On eligible purchases if account in good standing. Not applicable to cash advances, balance transfers, fees, interest, returns or payments. Cash back rewards earned based on purchase price only (excluding any associated transaction fees). Transactions billed in Canadian currency. Foreign currency transactions are converted to Canadian dollars at the MasterCard International rate on the date the transaction is posted. The rate applied to debits will be different than the rate applied to credits (rates established by MasterCard International and subject to change from time to time).

-----end-----

I found the info by going to the Rogers bank site, clicking on "rewards" menu item at the top, Select "Rogers Platinum Mastercard", and then click "Features and benefits".

August 14, 2016 @ 11:03 am
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

I did hear about this first from a blogger friend recently actually. It seems they are actually changing this to 4% as a replacement for the previous waived foreign transaction fee. The reason they are doing so is because most people don't even understand what a foreign currency transaction fee is and don't even know they are charged it.

By changing the marketing language to "4% on foreign currency transactions" it makes more sense to most people I guess. So in reality they are reducing the savings by .25% and making you wait until you can redeem your points for cash to get the bonus. With the 2.5% savings the total reward was 4.25% and you got the 2.5% savings instantly as opposed to having to wait.

August 15, 2016 @ 10:24 pm
A tech guy in BC
A tech guy in BC's picture

Hi Stephen,

I went back and checked the page where the 4% was advertised. It clearly states: "Foreign currency transactions are converted to Canadian dollars at the MasterCard International rate on the date the transaction is posted." I called Rogers Bank to confirm, and here is the scoop. They told me that the 4% went into effect last week and straight exchange rate will remain in effect until October 19, 2016.

So until that date, Rogers Bank card customers will get the double benefit. From October 20, 2016 and following, the 2.5% "penalty" will be in effect. I may be adjusting the timing for any major purchases I make state-side. :)

Thanks again for all the awesome info on your blog. A truly invaluable resource!

Tech Guy in BC

August 24, 2016 @ 7:17 pm
Ken
Ken's picture

" If your family spends a reasonable $25,000 annually on credit".... Really? Not even close to putting $2,000 PER MONTH on my credit card.

July 23, 2016 @ 11:50 am
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Do you have a family of 4 or more? Are you funneling absolutely every purchase you can through the card? Do you shop a lot at farmers markets and other stores that don't accept credit cards?

Do you live in a place where you don't need a car perhaps and the associated gas and expenses that go with that?

Do you live in a smaller community where wages and cost of living are lower?

Not everyone can reach $2,000 per month for sure, but I think a middle class Canadian family of 4 can get pretty close to this averaged throughout the full year.

July 23, 2016 @ 10:38 pm
Georgia
Georgia's picture

Hi Stephen,

Thanks for the info! What's your opinion on the PC Financial Mastercard for a family that shops a lot at Superstore and also needs a Mastercard for use at Costco.

July 30, 2016 @ 11:41 am
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

It's a good no-fee card, but not a top card. I recommend the Tangerine Money-Back MasterCard if you're looking for a top no-fee card.

If you spend a whole lot of money just on food and not much else, then the PC card would be a good choice if you can qualify for the World Elite version.

July 30, 2016 @ 3:40 pm
Brad
Brad's picture

Hello,
How strict are the credit card companies on minimum income? I make 60k (just under 100k family) and would like the mbna world elite. Is there a way to get around the minimum requirements? Thanks.

July 31, 2016 @ 10:46 am
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

They aren't very strict at all most of the time. If you have a good credit history and are anywhere close on the income, they will most likely approve you. It isn't guaranteed, but there is no real harm in trying as the impact on your credit score is only minimal and temporary.

July 31, 2016 @ 3:38 pm
Marlon
Marlon's picture

Hi Stephen,

Trying to decide which card to get.
MBNA Rewards World Elite MasterCard vs BMO CashBack World Elite MasterCard

I think if I start a BMO premium account to avoid the annual fee then BMO would be the top choice?
I will get
- 0.25 less cashback
- no annual fee to deduct from total cashback
- better insurance package minus price protection
- lounge access

Looking forward to your advice. Thanks.

August 21, 2016 @ 5:47 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Yes, I completely agree. If you already want to have the BMO Premium account and hold the $5,000 to waive the fees for that - then it is the better choice because of the increased insurance and no annual fee. Go for it!

September 05, 2016 @ 12:41 pm
Val
Val's picture

Currently have the Scotia Momentum Infinite Visa and Tangerine cashback MC, but feel like I could increase the cashback if I had the MBNA World Elite MC and get rid of the Momentum Visa. Our current spending is ~$1000 in grocery and gas combined and ~$2000+ in the other categories so I'd give up 2% on gas+groceries on $1000 but gain 1% on the other $2000. Anything in excess of the $2000 would only increase rewards - am I missing anything here? I'm aware MBNA card does not have the insurance benefits of the Momentum and there's other differences too

August 22, 2016 @ 2:36 am
Martin
Martin's picture

Has anyone used the almost new Myvanilla prepaid Master card that came out last year or this year? It is reloadable. If there is 7-11 stores in your area that also sell Petro Can gas, then that is the best way to maximize the Scotia momentum Visa Infinite cash back by combining the reward powers of Visa cash back & Petro points. You can even change all non gas $ grocery spendings to earn 4% or more rewards when combining the Visa cash back & Petro Can points.

August 23, 2016 @ 8:04 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Not exactly sure what you are saying Martin. Are you saying use your Scotia Visa to buy or load the Myvanilla card at a gas or grocery store to earn 4% on that. Then you can use the Myvanilla card when making your regular purchases.

This could work in theory. There is the monthly fees and load fees to contend with but if you load large amounts at once (is there a maximum?) then theoretically you will come out ahead. There is also the problem that if you lose your Myvanilla card with a large balance on it, you're out a lot of money.

September 05, 2016 @ 12:47 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Yes Val - this is a smart choice. As long as your gas/grocery isn't going to go much higher and a big portion of the $2,000 of other purchases are not recurring bills then you are either going to break even or come out ahead with MBNA. There's also the lower annual fee with MBNA, Price Protection, and the fact that they don't hold your cash back hostage for a once a year payment and take it all away if you cancel ahead of time.

September 05, 2016 @ 12:44 pm
Tom V
Tom V's picture

we are planning a trip to the us for four months .Which cash back credit card would you recommend? Thanks for your input.

September 11, 2016 @ 3:07 am
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

If you're just talking about making purchases in the USA in foreign currency, then the Rogers Platinum MasterCard is the best. It gives 4% rewards on foreign currency purchases. If you don't want to worry about having a Rogers service or the once a year cash back with Rogers, then the Chase Amazon.ca Visa that waived the foreign currency transaction fee (2.5%) is best.

September 12, 2016 @ 11:45 am
Dhruv D
Dhruv D's picture

Stephen,

We have been tightening the belt, so to speak, as far as our finances are concerned, and were wondering how recurring bills would factor into the cash back percentage at all. Say I wanted to pay for my mortgage through the credit card, would that be a possibility, or is it something that is expressly prohibited from cash back rewards?

Thank you.

September 20, 2016 @ 3:03 am
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

It isn't expressly prohibited - the thing is that most companies that receive payments for major bills and services don't accept credit card because they don't want to pay the associated fees. If you convince them to let you do it, and they are coded correctly in the credit card system's database as a recurring bill merchant, then you will get the increased percentage.

September 20, 2016 @ 10:46 am
Dhruv D
Dhruv D's picture

Thank you for your response Stephen. I have two recurring bills (mortgages) that I currently am paying for, and any help that I can get in the form of cash back or anything else would be great. How would I check if the mortgages can be charged to the credit card? (Both the mortgage holders are big Canadian banks).

On a slightly separate topic, you mentioned in the comments section of another article that, generally speaking
AMEX Rewards > Aeroplan > Avios > Cash Back > Air Miles

I am currently torn between the following three:
MBNA World Elite MC
BMO World Elite MC
AMEX Gold Rewards

As to my personal situation currently, I do not travel a lot for work or personal trips (the past two months have been an exception as I have been to Mexico for a work week, Thunder Bay (yes, I know!) for another, and the Carolinas for another work week), but all of those were all paid by work. My personal travel averages about 2 trips every 3 years (for a family of 3) to India and back.

I must admit, I have not paid attention to Credit cards / points / rewards etc over my history as (a) I have always considered them as scams/waste of time, (b) I was cocky enough to think even a few dollars don't matter and (c) I don't ever carry balances

Having said that, I am not sure if I should get a Travel Rewards card, or a Cash back one. I traditionally have stayed away from fee cards, but some of the features and the rewards definitely trump the fees (so no problem paying decent fees). But I can't justify the Amex Platinum plus fees... :)

Apologies if this came out longer than intended, but I am definitely looking to shake up everything from my cell phone bills to credit cards to pretty much everything else, and I think this is a good place to start as any.

Thank you very much.

September 23, 2016 @ 4:38 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

You won't have any luck with your mortgages, so I wouldn't bother trying. Those payments are so large the banks definitely want to save the fees. They are the ultimate creators of fees after all - they aren't going to eat all those fees when they can avoid them :)

I'd say if you aren't much into travel that the MBNA Rewards World Elite would be the best choice. If you are a road warrior, the BMO CashBack World Elite might be a good option for the free roadside assistance.

September 24, 2016 @ 9:30 pm
NZGuy
NZGuy's picture

Posting my Rogers Platinum Mastercard vs Amazon Visa experience

Going overseas, applied for Rogers Platinum Mastercard online, no instant approval – application under review, called after 2 days – rep says card declined. Didn’t bother to ask “why?” – don’t like Rogers anyways

Equifax credit score 784 before decline

In spite of having read reviews like “tight with credit limits” and “lengthy authentication process”, decided to apply Amazon Visa. Instant approval – credit limit CAD 6000

October 26, 2016 @ 9:51 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Thanks for sharing your experience. Since Rogers stopped waiving the foreign exchange fee and started giving extra rewards instead - I've stopped recommending that card as much. It's still a good deal - but I think people prefer to have the savings upfront instead of increased rewards.

November 01, 2016 @ 10:01 am
Simon Jacobs
Simon Jacobs's picture

Hi,

I have been using Scotia Gold for many years now. It gives a straight 2% cash back that can be applied to anything. Full medical, travel, trip cancellation, auto insurance, doubling the warranty time of items purchased and 5% cash back on trips booked through the Scotia Travel Agent service, which also includes a free concierge service as well.

October 28, 2016 @ 4:07 pm
Simon Jacobs
Simon Jacobs's picture

I should have mentioned 'Scotia Gold Passport' Visa card

October 28, 2016 @ 4:12 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Doesn't that card give 1 point per dollar spent. The Scotiabank website says that and also says that 100 points = $1 so that would be a 1% return on spending, not 2%.

November 01, 2016 @ 10:05 am
Igor
Igor's picture

Hi Stephen,

Thank you for your time and comments. Would you please recomend a Canadian Cash Back Credit Card for my situation:

I live by myself:

- I don't travel for work or personal trips, only once a year to Mexico or similar places, my trips are all inclusive.
- Montly shop at Costco, some health stores, Home depot (renovation and fixing a rental property)
- utilities bills
- Mortgage
- Gas
- car insurance

Thank you very much.

November 10, 2016 @ 4:26 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

MBNA Rewards World Elite if you spend more than $1500 per month. Tangerine Money-Back MasterCard if you spend less.

December 13, 2016 @ 12:11 pm
Brent
Brent's picture

I don't understand why the Capital One Aspire Travel World Elite MasterCard is showing in your chart as only giving 1.5% when I have the card and definitely receive 2%.

November 24, 2016 @ 4:45 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Because this is a cash back card comparison. If you want actual cash back (statement credit) with the Capital One card they reduce the payout to 1.5% from 2%. If you use your points for travel purchases, you get the full 2%.

November 27, 2016 @ 3:35 pm
Mark C
Mark C's picture

We spend a lot at Costco - both groceries and gas. For cards that offer bonus earnings in selectable categories (like the Tangerine Cash Back Card), what category would Costco fall into? And would Costco gasoline fall under the same overall category or would that fall under a different category when it gets processed?

December 01, 2016 @ 11:27 am
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

I'm not sure Costco fits into any category but I don't know for sure. Best to call customer service and ask them Mark. If anyone else knows, please chime in.

December 08, 2016 @ 9:39 pm
Mr. Cheap
Mr. Cheap's picture

Tangerine card is not for everyone. I applied and they gave me an approval for $10K. I phoned them to find out about Costco and Walmart. We spend a big chunk of grocery bill at Costco, and pick up the small stuff at Walmart grocery. We also buy all of our gas at Costco for 2 cars.. Tangerine told me that if I shop at Costco I would only get 1% and if I selected gas as one of my categories, I would still get 1% at Costco. That goes the same for Walmart grocery section. I would get only 1% because Walmart is considered as a warehouse like Costco.. Another thing I did not like is the limitation with Tangerine. You select 3 categories, so on you way back home from shopping at one of your 2% categories, you decide to stop at Home Depot or Lowes to buy an appliance or lumber, but wait, it was not one of you categories. So you have to drive home or pull over in a parking lot to access the Tangerine site to change you category to get the 2%.
It's a pain in the arse. I have the MBNA Elte and get 2% on everything, including on US purchases. The $89 I fee I pay is for my peace of mind.

December 24, 2016 @ 5:41 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

I agree the fee for the MBNA card is worth it. Tangerine is better for those who just can't stomach paying an annual fee for whatever reason or are low spenders.

January 02, 2017 @ 10:23 am
Brenda
Brenda's picture

What is the best card for cash back rewards on reoccurring payments?

December 05, 2016 @ 12:22 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

MBNA Rewards World Elite - no other card tops 2% and you get 2% on all charges not just recurring payments with the MRWE.

December 08, 2016 @ 9:39 pm
Neu To Cash Back
Neu To Cash Back's picture

Hi Stephen,

We are both old school here at home. We JUST found out about cash back programs, as we are late to the game I suspect. We have both been using regular no fee credit cards (one with 5.7% low interest) and debit cards attached to chequing accounts. Apparently, this is the old school way of finances.

I just had a conversation with a branch manager asking her what happened to all the interest people used to get in savings accounts back in the day (70's - 90's) and she said that it has been replaced with 'cash back' 'points' programs.

We have always been taught to never put anything on a Visa unless you really needed to. However, apparently to actually get 'interest savings' these days, you have too. Is this correct?

We are just in the midst of doing a financial reboot and trying to decide which cash back credit card would make the most sense for us. I also know that Meridian Credit Union is also coming out with one in March but the details are minimal right now. Would you happen to have any more info on this card?

Also, if we do get a cash back card, how do we set up our finances so that we can really take advantage of it and how do we ensure it gets paid off each month without fail just incase something happens?

Would you know if there secure financial computer software out there that isn't an app (we don't ever put any financial info on our phones) whereby we can manage our monthly budget and manage our finances?

Cheers.

January 04, 2017 @ 6:19 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

I think the answer given to you by your branch manager is negligent. Credit card cash back has nothing to do with savings interest. Savings interest is low for a lot of economic factors. Debt rates are correspondingly low.

Cash back are rewards given to you for using a financial product. Credit Card issuers get a cut of every transaction made via credit card and give part of that back to you as rewards. Merchants get convenience and increase spending, credit card issues get their cut, and consumers also get increased convenience, rewards, and access to short term loans. In some cases the rewards you get can be worth MORE to you than what it costs the merchants in fees which is a really win-win-win scenario in my opinion.

It's up to you if you want to try and take advantage of them or not. If you are responsible, don't increase your spending, and pay of your credit card in full every month - then you are losing out by not taking advantage of them.

You can set up most credit cards with auto pay to make sure you don't miss payments. You just need to make sure the money is in your bank account on the payment date. I prefer to log in twice a month via online banking and just pay them manually.

If you check my sidebar, I have a free budget spreadsheet you can download for budgeting. I also hear You Need A Budget is really good budgeting software but I haven't used it myself.

January 10, 2017 @ 10:32 am
Neu To Cash Back
Neu To Cash Back's picture

Thank you Stephen. I appreciate your good advice. I did download your budget spreadsheet prior to my message to you, however, the challenge is, I am using a Mac and it doesn't have Microsoft office on it. I did download the Open Office program to help deal with the problems I have converting documents but it didn't convert your document well at all. It was an unfixable mess. I have also checked out the Budget online software you mentioned. I will try that in the interm.
Once I figure out our budget then I will choose one of the cards you listed. Taking in consideration Meridian's new Visa lineup as well. There might be a benefit with going with one of their cash back cards, but I won't know until it is officially launched and I can see what the details are. I hear there is mobile phone coverage, which might be good for us. I'm sure it will all be up to the details in the end.

January 16, 2017 @ 7:09 pm
B Belanger
B Belanger's picture

Hi Stephen, I just wanted to point out that the travel medical insurance is only applicable to age 65. Customers need to be aware of the age limit before choosing a credit card based on insurance coverage, especially for travelling seniors.

January 20, 2017 @ 12:36 am
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

True, on some cards it stops at 65. On others it just gets reduced some but is still available.

January 23, 2017 @ 10:18 am

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