Back in 2017 I wrote about my favorite Canadian credit cards. Two years have now passed and so it’s time for a refresh. Since there are so many options to choose from, I thought I’d list my favorite options and why. Here is my best Canadian credit cards 2019 list.
Frequent Flier Points vs. Cash Back Rewards
Frequent flier rewards programs are popular but in general, I find them relatively difficult to use and dollar to reward, expensive. For instance, how do you evaluate what 10,000 miles/points is worth? What did it take to accumulate those points and how far will those points actually will take you? In addition, there are often many restrictions(i.e. annual fees, blackout dates, extended layovers, inconvenient flight schedules, restrictions to certain airlines, etc.)
Cash back on the other hand is pretty easy to understand and use. In addition, many cash back cards have no annual fees. If you are not spending massive amounts of money, annual fees are hard to justify. With all that said, here is a list of the Best Canadian Credit Cards 2019. Disclaimer: All information below is current as of February 5th, 2019 and is according to my understanding. Before you apply for a card, I recommend checking the fine print as everything is subject to change at anytime.
Best Canadian Credit Cards 2019
My list below focuses on no annual fee and cash back reward cards as I believe that for the average consumer, these have the most value. Some of these cards have extra benefits such as roadside assistance, rental car insurance, purchase protection, etc. but you will have to do the homework on that.
Rogers Bank Platinum MasterCard – 1.25% cash back on most purchases. Bonus: If you buy something in a foreign currency you get 3% cash back, but remember that this card(like nearly all cards) has a 2.5% foreign currency exchange fee. Therefore, you’re really getting .5% cash back on foreign purchases. The highlight about this card is for most purchases you will accumulate 1.25%.
Costco Cash Back Capital One Platinum MasterCard – To be eligible you must be a Costco member. I like that this card gives 2% cash back on Gasoline, and it can be from other retailers other than Costco. This card also gives you 3% cash back at restaurants.
Tangerine MasterCard – 2% cash back on up to two merchant categories that you select. Merchant categories can range from grocery, furniture, restaurant, hotels, gas, drug stores, home improvement, entertainment, public transportation and parking.
President’s Choice Financial World Elite MasterCard – 3% back in Superstore points. I often shop at Superstore/Loblaws for groceries since they have competitive pricing and carry thousands of everyday products. Instead of cash back, you’ll receive “PC Points” which you can use towards nearly anything in Superstore. PC Points are easy to understand because you simply take the points amount divided by 1000 and that is your dollar equivalent.
Simplii Financial Cash Back Visa – 4% cash back at restaurants and bars. When I received this card they had a promotion for 10% cash back at restaurants and bars up to the first 4 months or first $500 spent. Quick tip: It might be hard to spend $500 in the first four months on coffee at Tim Horton’s or Starbucks but if you’re a regular customer you could just buy a pre-paid card before the four months is up and you’ve looked in your 10% award!
Home Trust Preferred Visa – I recently received this card but I probably won’t use it much….. unless I go abroad. The big selling point with this card is that it does not have a currency exchange fee (typically an additional 2.5%) and it also returns 1% cash back.
Sample Monthly Budget Cash Back
Dining Out = $100 * 4%(Use Simplii Financial Visa) = $4.00
Gas $100 * 2%(Use Costco Capital One Platinum M/C)= $2.00
Groceries(Use PC Financial World Elite or Tangerine MC = $500 * 2% = $10
Recurring Bills (i.e. Internet/Heat/Electricity/Water/Auto/Home Insurance) = $400 * 2%(Use Tangerine MC) = $8
Miscellaneous ( Vacation/New Computer/Clothes/Entertainment) = $500 * 1.25%(Rogers Bank Platinum MC) = $6.25
Total = $30.25 / month * 12 = $363 / year
In summary, using these cards ranges between 1.25% – 4% cash back for most purchases. Over the course of a year, this can really add up. For example, spending about $19,200 a year at the supermarket, gas, restaurants, utility bills, can add up to over $350/year (netting almost a 2% return.) Who doesn’t need more cash?
Thanks for reading my post on the Best Canadian Credit Cards 2019. I hope you found it helpful and please feel free to like, share, and comment!