Best Rewards Credit Cards In Canada For 2020

Last updated on January 19, 2020 | By

We’ve compared and selected the best rewards credit cards in Canada on the market today. These are the cards that currently have the highest earn rates, the largest cash-back offers, and the best points redemption programs. While most rewards cards comes with an annual fee, the perks and bonuses you receive over the year, especially if you’re a frequent spender, will largely make it back multiple times over. For most cards, you’ll get your first year’s annual fee waived or rebated back to you in full.

Summary
Best overall: American Express Cobalt
Best for flexible spending: American Express Gold Rewards
Best for travel rewards: TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite
Best for airline perks: TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite
Best cash back: Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite
Best premium rewards card: American Express Platinum
Best high rewards rates with no annual fee: Shell AIR MILES Mastercard

Best overall rewards credit card in Canada

American Express Cobalt

american-express-cobalt-cardcard

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on American Express’ website

Welcome Offer: 30,000 Points

Earn Rate: 5x rewards on dining, coffee shops, grocery stores. 2x rewards on travel, lodging, transit. 1x point for everything else.

Annual Fees: $10/month

Min. Income Required: $0

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Few other cards come close to the earn rate of the American Express Cobalt Card. It’s the perfect card for everyday spending as it provides the highest earn rate for grocery, dining, and drinks purchases at 5 points per $1 spent. For travel and transit, you’ll earn 2 points for every $1 spent with your card. For everything else, you’ll earn 1 point.

One of the reasons why this is one of the most popular cards is the flexible points redemption program. You have a lot of options on how to use your rewards points. You can use your points for dining, groceries, drinks at bars, movie tickets, retail shopping, and even movie streaming services. You can also book travel through the Fixed Points Travel Program or American Express Travel Online, get tickets to concerts and events through Ticketmaster, buy gift cards and merchandise through their membership rewards shop, and even redeem shopping purchases from Amazon.

You also get access to Front of the Line by American Express Invites to advanced movie screenings.

With a welcome bonus up to 30,000 Rewards Points, travel insurance, and no fees to hold additional cards, the American Express Cobalt Card is our top pick as the best overall rewards credit card in Canada at the moment.

Click here for more details about the American Express Cobalt Card

Best flexible spending rewards credit card

American Express Gold Rewards

American Express Gold Rewards Card

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on American Express’ website

Welcome Offer: 25,000 Points

Earn Rate: 2x points for travel, groceries, gas stations, and drugstores. 1x point on everything else.

Annual Fees: $150

Min. Income Required: $0

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The American Express Gold Rewards Card allows you to spend on a large number of categories with a high earn rate. You’ll get 2 rewards points for every $1 spent with your card on groceries, gas, drugstores and travel. You’ll earn 1 rewards point for every $1 spent on all other purchases.

Along with the other perks and benefits (like travel insurance, access to The Hotel Collection from American Express, and benefits from Hertz Gold Plus Rewards loyalty program), the card comes with a large welcome bonus of 25,000 Membership Rewards points. You’ll receive your welcome bonus in full when you charge $1,500 to your card within the first 3 months of membership.

Another benefit of the Amex Gold Card is that you’re able to convert your Membership Rewards 1:1 for Aeroplan Miles. If you’re an Aeroplan member, no other card has a higher Aeroplan Miles earn rate than this card.

Click here for more details about the American Express Gold Rewards Card

Best credit card for maximum travel rewards

TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite

TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite

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on TD’s website

Welcome Offer: 90,000 TD Points + First year fee waived + 2x TD Points on all purchases in the first 3 months up to a total of 60,000 points.

Earn Rate: 9x points when you book travel online through Expedia For TD. 3x points on everything else.

Annual Fee: $120

Min. Income Required: Personal $60,000 or Household $100,000

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If travel points are your thing, the TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite Card is the top travel points card on the market today. It comes with one of the largest welcome bonuses of 90,000 TD Rewards Points, has one of the most flexible points redemption programs (travel bookings can be made anytime through Expedia for TD), and offers the highest number of points per $1 of spending.

The TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite Card gives you 3 TD Points for every $1 spent on all purchases. When booking travel through Expedia for TD, you’ll earn a whopping 9 TD Points for every $1 spent. The waived first year fee combined with the slew of travel benefits (like travel insurance, car rental insurance, and car rental savings) makes this the #1 card on the market for people looking to collect maximum travel rewards and save on their next trip.

Click here for more details about the TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite Card

Best credit card for airline perks

TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite

TD Aeroplan Infinite Visa Card

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on TD’s website

Welcome Offer: 40,000 Aeroplan Miles + First year fee waived + 2x Aeroplan Miles on eligible Purchases in the first 3 months up to a total of 20,000 Aeroplan Miles.

Earn Rate: 1.5 mile for every $1 spent on eligible grocery, gas and drugstores. 1 mile for every $1 spent on all other purchases. 2x miles at participating retailers.

Annual Fee: $120

Min. Income Required: Personal $60,000 or Household $100,000

If you’re looking for a credit card that gives you a VIP experience when travelling, the TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite Card offers the best perks. You’ll need to fly with Air Canada, but if you do, you’ll get your bags checked for free, receive priority check-in and boarding, and get a free pass to the Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge once per year.

It also comes with other travel perks like travel insurance (covered up to $1 million), complimentary Visa Infinite Concierge, car rental insurance and savings when renting with Avis or Budget.

We didn’t even mention the welcome bonus yet. You can earn up to 25,000 Aeroplan Miles in the first year, which is enough to get you a roundtrip long haul flight. Redeeming is straightforward. You get the first 15,000 Aeroplan Miles immediately after making a purchase with your card, and the remaining 10,000 when you charge $2,000 on your card within the first 3 months.

When you consider you get your first year’s annual fee waived, this card is high on our list for people looking for the most travel perks.

Click here for more details about the TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite Card

Best cash back credit card (with unique perks)

Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite

Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite

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on Scotia Bank’s website

Welcome Offer: First year fee waived.

Earn Rate: 4% cash back on grocery, recurring bills, and subscription purchases. 2% back on gas and daily transit, and 1% back on everything else.

Annual Fee: $99

Min. Income Required: Personal $60,000 or Household $100,000.

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The Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite Card is offering one of the highest cash back rates in Canada. You’ll earn 4% cash back on gas and groceries, 2% cash back at drug stores and when you set up recurring billing payments, and 1% on all other purchases.

The 10% cash back offer combined with no annual fees in the first year totals this card’s rewards value at $299. The Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite Card also comes with some unique dining and entertainment perks like Visa Infinite Dining Series (where you can get private dining experiences with some of the biggest names in the food industry) and Wine Country Wonders (where you can get complimentary wine tastings, private vineyard tours, and discounts on wine).

You also get access to Visa Infinite Music Series (where you can VIP access to music events, meet the artists, and hang out in the VIP area) and Luxury Hotel Privileges (where you get automatic room upgrades at select hotels).

It doesn’t end there. If you want to use your card for travel, it also comes with travel insurance, car rental insurance, and savings at AVIS and Budget car rental.

Click here for more details about the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite Card

Best premium rewards credit card

American Express Platinum

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on American Express’ website

Welcome Offer: 50,000 Points + $200 annual travel credits

Earn Rate: 2x points for travel, 3x for dining, and 1x for everything else.

Annual Fees: $699

Min. Income Required: $0

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The American Express Platinum Card has one of the highest annual fees on the market. However, it comes with some of the biggest perks and bonuses. Cardholders will receive 50,000 Bonus Membership Rewards® points, which is equivalent to $500 in travel credits. You’ll also get an extra $200 travel credit every single year that you’re a member. That’s already enough to cover the annual fee without even considering the points you’ll earn back from purchases.

You’ll earn 3 points for every $1 spent on eligible dining, 2 points for travel purchases, and 1 point on everything else. Plus, earn an extra point on top for each $1 spent on eligible hotel or car rental bookings made with your card. You can spend your points to redeem purchases, book travel through the Fixed Points Travel Program, order gift cards, and even transfer points to other loyalty programs like Aeromiles.

And if you’re looking for travel perks, The American Express Platinum Card offers the highest travel insurance coverage at $5M for the first 15 days, car rental insurance, 24/7/365 access to Travel Emergency Assistance (access to worldwide emergency medical assistance services and legal referrals), and even StandbyMD Travel Medical Concierge (24/7 access to physician telephone consultations, arrangement of house call visits, and referral to medical facilities).

All of these rewards, perks, and benefits combined with the fact that you’ll have no pre-set spending limit, makes this a pricey-but-worth-it option for many people.

Click here for more details about the American Express Platinum Card

Best for high rewards rates with no annual fee

BMO Shell Air Miles Mastercard

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on BMO’s website

Welcome Offer: 800 AIR MILES Bonus Miles.

Earn Rate: 1.25x Miles on purchases at Shell locations in Canada. Get 1 Mile for every $15 spent everywhere else.

Annual Fee: $99

Min. Income Required $60,000 personal or $100,000 household

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If you’re not a heavy spender and just want a good rewards credit card that you can rack up points with, then the BMO Shell AIR MILES Mastercard is your best choice. Even with no annual fee, you’ll still earn hefty points through the Air Miles loyalty program.

Cardholders will get 800 bonus Air Miles as a welcome bonus, then be able to earn 2x the Miles on all purchases made at participating Air Miles partners.

You’ll earn 1.25x Miles on purchases at Shell locations in Canada. Get 1 Mile for every $15 spent everywhere else.

Click here for more details about the Shell AIR MILES Mastercard

Methodology: How we choose the cards in this list

Simple Rate chooses the best rewards credit cards in Canada based on evaluating size of welcome bonuses, points earnings rates, redemption options, and other perks and benefits.

View the best overall credit cards in Canada.

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