Credit cards with travel perks are truly the best. You can benefit from these if you enjoy traveling, are a frequent flyer, love getting a bargain on something, bonus hunter, or all of the above. Subscribing to one of the best credit cards in Canada will save you a lot of money on airplane tickets, travel insurance, luggage claims, and many other similar things.
Consumers often evaluate credit cards rewards programs based on value offered per point. A good way to measure is to check how may air miles or associated perks each dollar you spend on the card gets you. While value points are important, it’s also important to consider other factors. For example, the annual fee should not cancel out the rewards you earn per point.
The cost per reward should also match the rewards on offer. Once all the fees have been considered, the credit card should offer a number of perks such as insurance coverage, low foreign transaction fees, travel opportunities, and so on. Travel credit cards that combine the best cost per reward with an increased number of perks are the best to subscribe to.
Here is a list of five of travel credit cards in Canada that offer the best value as described above:
1. American Express® Gold Rewards Card
Amex Gold is really the gold standard for travel credit cards in Canada. Points earned can be used for any travel-related purchase either online or offline. In some cases, you can convert points to frequent flyer programs. The welcome bonus is 25,000. For purchases made for $1,500 or above during the first three months, members get rewards points that can convert to close to $550. The annual fee for the first year is automatically waived, which will save you $150.
The biggest advantage with this card is that you can double your points easily by spending money at gas stations, grocery stores, and pharmacies. Plus, travel-related expenses incurred for road, air, rail, or water transport also counts. In some cases, lodging and tour operator charges paid with the card can earn you points.
An Amex point is equivalent to one cent. That makes the base rewards rate 1% and the bonus rate 2%. These rates can be increased by transferring points to Aeroplan. You will earn points for booking a flight, renting a hotel room, or hiring a rental car. Then, these earned points can be redeemed at full value to pay off any travel expense that shows up on the statement plus taxes and service charges. No extra charges incur when you transfer points for Aeroplan or British Airways AVIOS program.
2. TD® Aeroplan® Visa Infinite Card
This is an excellent card to start collecting Air Miles with. You don’t have to pay any annual fees for the first year of use and you will receive a welcome bonus of 30,000 miles. You will earn 15,000 miles with the first purchase you make using the card. If you keep the card active for 90 days following approval, you receive 10,000 miles more. You can receive 5,000 miles per authorized card user you add. For the first year, the primary cardholder can get an annual rebate of $120. This is a lot of incentive just for signing up.
Stack up 25,000 points on the TD card and that will be enough to fly from Canada to any city in the United States or Mexico. Each air mile you receive using this card will amount to roughly 1.28 cents per mile for economy tickets. For business class, it would amount to about 2.2 cents per mile. This is definitely a bargain. Earning mile points is not that difficult. The card offers an extra 1.5 points per dollar spent buying gas, groceries, or pharmaceutical items. At this amount, your earn rate will be at about 3.3%.
There are many other cherries on top of this cake, including coverage for travel insurance, trip cancellations, baggage rental, car rental, and flight interruptions, among others.
3. MBNA Rewards World Elite MasterCard®
There are many incentives offered for signing up, including a sign in bonus of up to $100 and a waiver for first year annual fee. This card does not have a minimum spending requirement. Everything earns a 2% reward rate. This card allows users to redeem cash credit points for anything, which includes your travel-related expenses.
MBNA offers 2 points per dollar spend on all purchases, which is a solid advantage this card has over the others. There are no cap limits on how many points you can earn either. If you are a frequent flyer, you can redeem points for anything travel related. Keep in mind that points can be redeemed against any purchase regardless of whether it’s travel related. So, if you only fly periodically or once every two or three years, this is the best travel credit card to have.
4. Rogers™ Platinum MasterCard®
Most travel credit cards have a downside: hefty foreign transaction fees. Rogers is actually one of the few travel credit cards to subsidize transaction fees incurred overseas. You can earn a whopping 4% cash back on any foreign purchase. The rewards rate for all other purchases is 1.75%. Points can be redeemed regardless of the type of expense.
There’s no annual fee during the first year, and you will receive a $25 welcoming bonus. Cash rewards can be redeemed once annually, which will include travel expenses. It’s possible to not pay any annual fee at all by pre-authorizing payments. Also keep in mind that Rogers offers one of the best travel insurance policies in Canada with this card.
5. Desjardins Visa Odyssey Gold
The travel credit cards mentioned above on this list require hefty monthly income levels. Desjardins travel credit card is one of the most egalitarian offered in Canada. You can get approval without earning a six-figure salary.
This card comes with a solid travel medical insurance policy that will cover you and your family for 60 days straight when out of your province. This is a significantly longer coverage period than the industry average. Also, the policy covers up to $5 million in claims in comparison to others that offer only one or two million. In addition to insurance, there’s car rental, lost baggage, baggage rental, trip delay, flight cancellation, purchase protection, and accident coverage as well.
So, if you are on the hunt for a really good travel credit card, choose one from the above list for the best perks and consumer options.