CIBC Aventura Gold Review

CIBC Aventura Gold Visa Review
  • Annual Cost
  • Earn Rate
  • Perks and Rewards
  • Customer Service
  • Welcome Bonus
3.3

CIBC Aventura Gold Review Summary:

The CIBC Aventura Gold Visa is a premium credit card without the premium minimum income requirement! The card boasts flexible point redemption, a generous welcome bonus, excellent perks, plus travel insurance coverage. It’s nearly identical to the CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite, but it doesn’t require you to have an income of $60,000/year.

Our CIBC Aventura Gold Visa review gives you all the details on this accessible premium card and shows you how it compares to the other cards in the CIBC Aventura family. We also put the card head-to-head against RBC’s Avion Platinum Visa to see which offers the best value for its annual fee.

Pros

  • Low required minimum income
  • A range of travel insurance
  • Good selection of perks
  • Generous welcome bonus
  • Flexible points redemption

Cons

  • No travel emergency medical insurance for cardholders 65 and over
  • High annual fee

If you’re looking for a travel Visa with flexible points redemption and a premium selection of perks and benefits, the CIBC Aventura Gold is an excellent candidate.

Our CIBC Aventura Gold Visa review lays out this card’s information in detail and explains what makes it CIBC’s most flexible travel card. It also looks at the CIBC Aventura Gold Visa in context, comparing it to other cards from the same family as well as to an equivalent travel card: the RBC Avion Platinum Visa.

What makes us such big fans of the CIBC Aventura Gold Visa? It’s the premium perks and benefits packed into a card that is accessible to anyone who has good credit and a household income over $15,000. What kind of perks and benefits are we talking here? Let’s take a look!

CIBC Aventura Gold Visa Review: The Numbers

Annual Fee: $139 ($50 per additional card). CIBC will waive the main cardholder’s annual fee every year if you have a CIBC Smart Plus Account.

Minimum Income: $15,000 household.

Interest Rate: 19.99% on purchases until October 2021 (20.99% thereafter), 22.99% on cash advances (21.99% in Quebec).

Earn Rate:

  • 2 points/$1 spent on travel through the CIBC Rewards Centre
  • 1.5 points/$1 spent at eligible gas stations, grocery stores, and drugstores (this earning category has an $80,000 spend cap)
  • 1 point/$1 spent on all other purchases
  • 1 point/$4 spent on a CIBC Global Money Transfer

Travel Insurance Coverage:

  • Emergency travel medical (up to $5 million for the first 15 days of your trip. Travellers aged 65 and up are not covered)
  • Flight Delay insurance (up to $500 for accommodation and restaurant expenses, up to $100 for ground transportation, and up to $100 for entertainment, for a total of $700 coverage if your flight is delayed for more than 4 hours)
  • Baggage Insurance (Up to $500 if your baggage is delayed by more than 6 hours, up to $500 if your bag is lost or damaged)
  • Auto Collision/Loss/Damage Insurance (for vehicles valued at $65,000 or less)
  • Common Carrier Accident Insurance (up to $500,000)
  • Hotel Burglary Insurance (a maximum of $2,500 per occurrence)

Perks:

  • Priority Pass airport lounge membership plus 4 free visits/year
  • $50 NEXUS fee rebate every 4 years
  • Up to 10 cents off per litre on eligible gas purchases from Chevron, Ultramar, and Pioneer
  • Extended Warranty up to one additional year
  • Purchase Security up to 90 days
  • Mobile Device Insurance up to $1,000
  • Car rental discounts at participating locations

CIBC Aventura Gold Visa Welcome Bonus

First year’s fee rebated for cardholder and up to 3 additional users.

Earn up to 35,000 Aventura points (up to $800 in travel value). Get 20,000 points when you make your first purchase and an additional 1250 points for each month in the first year in which you spend at least $1000 (up to 15,000 possible additional points).

CIBC Aventura Points

CIBC’s signature travel rewards program – Aventura Points – are advertised as CIBC’s “most flexible travel rewards program.” CIBC also offers Aeroplan Visas, so this means that the Aventura cards are designed to be more flexible than Air Canada’s loyalty program. 

If you want more information about Aeroplan points so you can compare them in detail, check out our list of the Best Aeroplan Credit Cards in Canada, which explains how Air Canada’s program works.

Instead of limiting cardholders to a family of partner airlines, CIBC’s Aventura points allow you to choose from hundreds of airlines, all with no blackout dates or restrictions. Like Aeroplan points, Aventura points don’t expire.

CIBC has an online booking tool that helps you get the best value from your points. If you’re redeeming points for flights, CIBC has designated 5 zones with different, fixed, point values.

Short-haul flights start as low as 10,000 points. CIBC also offers a top-up option where cardholders can purchase up to 20% of the points they need at check-out.

CIBC Aventura Visas also offer flexible travel options. Cardholders can book flights, travel, tours, accommodations, activities, and more through the CIBC Rewards Centre. They can also redeem their rewards points for merchandise, gift cards, statement credits, and experiences like a pro golf lesson, a day with a personal chef, learning to fly a plane, etc. All redemption transactions take place through the CIBC Rewards Centre website.

CIBC Aventura Gold Visa Card vs. CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite vs. CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite Privilege

Like many credit cards (like our favorite card in Canada Neo Financial for example), CIBC Aventura Visas are offered on a tiered system, each with different specific offerings, perks, and requirements. Here’s a quick look at the different tiers of CIBC Aventura cards so that you can see what your options are and what you get for your annual fee.

Card Name:CIBC Aventura VisaCIBC Aventura Gold VisaCIBC Aventura Visa InfiniteCIBC Aventura Visa Infinite Privilege
Fee$0$139$139$499
Interest rate20.99% / 22.99%20.99% / 22.99%20.99% / 22.99%20.99% / 22.99%
Minimum Income$15,000$15,000$60,000/$100,000$150,000/$200,000
Welcome bonusUp to 10,000 Aventura PointsUp to 35,000 Aventura PointsUp to 35,000 Aventura PointsUp to 60,000 Aventura Points
Earn rate1 point/$1 spent on gas, groceries, drug stores, and travel through CIBC

0.5 point/$1 spend on everything else

1 point/$8 spent on a CIBC Global Money Transfer
2 points/$1 spent on travel through CIBC

1.5 points/$1 spent on gas, groceries, drugstores

1 point/$1 spent on all other purchases

1 point/$4 spent on a CIBC Global Money Transfer
2 points/$1 spent on travel through CIBC

1.5 points/$1 spent on gas, groceries, drugstores

1 point/$1 spent on all other purchases

1 point/$4 spent on a CIBC Global Money Transfer
3 points/$1 spent on travel through CIBC

2 points/$1 spent on gas, groceries, drugstores

1.25 points/$1 spent on all other purchases

1 point/$4 spent on a CIBC Global Money Transfer
Perks* Aventura Travel Assistant
* Up to 10 cents off/litre on eligible gas
* Extended Warranty
* Purchase Security
* Car rental discounts
* Priority Pass airport lounge membership plus 4 free visits/year
* Aventura Travel Assistant
* $50 NEXUS fee rebate every 4 years
* Up to 10 cents off/litre on eligible gas
* Extended Warranty
* Purchase Security
* Mobile Device Insurance
* Car rental discounts
* Priority Pass airport lounge membership plus 4 free visits/year
* Aventura Travel Assistant
* Visa Infinite concierge
* $50 NEXUS fee rebate every 4 years
* Up to 10 cents off/litre on eligible gas
* Extended Warranty
* Purchase Security
* Mobile Device Insurance
* Car rental discounts
* Annual $200 travel credit
* Priority Pass airport lounge membership plus 6 free visits/year
* Access to redeem points for business class seats
* Aventura travel assistant
* Visa Infinite Privilege concierge
* Up to two NEXUS fee rebates every 4 years
* Up to 10 cents off/litre on eligible gas
* Extended Warranty
* Purchase Security
* Mobile Device Insurance
* Car rental discounts
Insurance* Discount on Auto Collision/Loss/Damage Insurance
* Common Carrier Accident Insurance ($100,000) 
* Emergency travel medical ($5 million if under 65)
* Flight Delay ($700)
* Baggage Insurance ($500)
*Auto Collision /Loss/ Damage Insurance ($65,000 value)
* Common Carrier Accident Insurance ($500,000)
* Hotel Burglary Insurance ($2,500 maximum)
* Emergency travel medical ($5 million for 15 days if under 65, for 3 days if aged 65+)
* Trip cancellation ($1,500)
* Trip interruption ($2,000)
* Flight Delay ($700)
* Baggage Insurance ($500)
* Auto Collision /Loss/ Damage Insurance ($65,000 value)
* Common Carrier Accident Insurance ($500,000)
* Hotel Burglary Insurance ($2,500 maximum)
* Emergency travel medical ($5 million for 31 days if under 65, for 10 days if aged 65+)
* Trip cancellation ($2,500)
* Trip interruption ($5,000)
* Flight Delay ($700)
* Baggage Insurance ($1,000)
* Auto Collision /Loss/ Damage Insurance ($85,000 value)
* Common Carrier Accident Insurance ($500,000)
* Hotel Burglary Insurance

The base CIBC Aventura Visa is a no-fee travel card with limited perks and benefits, as we expect to see in a free credit card. It does have some travel accident insurance, plus it offers up to $25/day off car rental insurance prices, which is generous for a card with no annual fee. It has a significantly lower earn rate, but again, that’s expected.

If a no-fee travel card is more your speed this one is fine, but you should also check out our MBNA Platinum Plus Mastercard review for a no-fee card with flexible travel rewards that we featured on our Best Travel Credit Cards in Canada list for 2021.

Moving into the paid card options, you’ll see there aren’t a huge number of differences between the CIBC Aventura Gold Visa card and the CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite. The annual fee, welcome bonus, and earn rates are identical. Also, both cards offer similar perks and benefits.

The CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite offers a specific Visa Infinite concierge service, plus added trip cancellation and interruption insurance. It also offers travellers 65 and up some emergency medical insurance, giving them 3 days of coverage as opposed to none.

These aren’t huge differences, but then again, the CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite isn’t asking for a larger annual fee – it’s merely providing cardholders with a more premium Visa Infinite experience to match the higher income requirement ($60,000 personal or $100,000 household income as opposed to $15,000 household).

The CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite Privilege card offers the most by far in welcome bonuses, earn rates, perks, and insurance. However, that is to be expected from an ultra-premium card with a $499/year price tag.

One thing to note if you travel extensively and are over the age of 64: the CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite Privilege provides the best emergency travel medical insurance of the three cards. It gives travellers aged 65 and up 10 days of emergency medical coverage.

However, keep in mind that the CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite Privilege has a required minimum income of $150,000 personal or $200,000 household, making it the least universally accessible card in the Aventura family.

CIBC Aventura Gold Visa Card vs. RBC Avion Visa Platinum Card

For the comparison section of our CIBC Aventura Gold Visa review, we looked for a travel Visa that had bank-specific points (as opposed to Air Miles or Aeroplan) and had a comparable annual fee without being a Visa Infinite card. With these criteria in mind, we settled on the RBC Avion Platinum Visa card. Let’s take a look before we break things down:

Card Name:CIBC Aventura Gold VisaRBC Avion Platinum Visa
Fee$139$120
Interest rate20.99% / 22.99%19.99% / 22.99%
Minimum Income$15,000None
Welcome bonusUp to 35,000 Aventura Points35,000 RBC Rewards Points
Earn rate2 points/$1 spent on travel

1.5 points/$1 spent on gas, groceries, drugstores

1 point/$1 spent on all other purchases

1 point/$4 spent on a CIBC Global Money Transfer
1 point/$1 spentBonus points through purchases at selected retailers
Perks * Priority Pass airport lounge membership plus 4 free visits/year
* Aventura Travel Assistant
* $50 NEXUS fee rebate every 4 years
* Up to 10 cents off/litre on eligible gas
* Extended Warranty
* Purchase Security
* Mobile Device Insurance
* Car rental discounts
* Save 3 cents/litre on fuel at Petro Canada, plus 20% more Petro-points
* Bonus Be Well points (Rexall)
* $0 delivery fees for 12 months from DoorDash
* Purchase Security
* Extended Warranty 
Insurance * Emergency travel medical ($5 million if under 65)
* Flight Delay ($700)
* Baggage Insurance ($500)
*Auto Collision/Loss/Damage Insurance ($65,000 value)
* Common Carrier Accident Insurance ($500,000)
* Hotel Burglary Insurance ($2,500 maximum)
* Trip Cancellation ($1,000)
* Trip Interruption ($2,500)
* Flight Delay ($250)
* Emergency Purchases ($500)
* Auto Collision/Loss/Damage Insurance
* Common Carrier Accident Insurance ($500,000)
* Hotel burglary insurance ($2,500) 

Both the CIBC Aventura Gold Visa and the RBC Avion Platinum Visa charge a hefty annual fee ($139 vs. $120). As expected, both cards provide significant perks in exchange. Their current welcome bonuses are both 35,000 points, but their stated values differ.

Redemption values vary depending on the rewards cardholders choose. RBC indicates their welcome bonus is worth “up to $750,” while CIBC puts the value of their 35,000 points at “up to $800.” Based on the estimated value each bank provides, we’ll give this one to the CIBC Aventura Gold Visa, although keep in mind that mileage may vary (pun intended).

Earn rates differ significantly. While the CIBC Aventura Gold Visa offers double the earn rate on travel booked through their website and 1.5 points for every dollar spent on gas, groceries, and drug stores, the RBC Avion Platinum Visa simply offers its base rate of 1 point per dollar spent on everything. CIBC Aventura Gold Visa is the winner here.

Both cards offer perks, but we particularly appreciate the CIBC Aventura Gold Visa’s Priority Pass airport lounge access (with 4 free visits annually) and their mobile device insurance (up to $1,000). Again, we give this one to the CIBC Aventura Gold Visa.

Travel insurance is available on both cards. RBC offers more kinds of travel insurance (7 types compared to CIBC’s 6), and specifically offers trip cancellation and trip interruption insurance, which the CIBC Aventura Gold Visa does not.

However, CIBC does offer emergency medical insurance for travellers under 65, which is not part of RBC’s package. This one is a draw depending on your age and personal insurance preferences, although we do appreciate the emergency medical insurance.

Conclusion: we find that the CIBC Aventura Gold Visa has the better offering between these two cards.   

CIBC Aventura Gold Visa Review: Do Your Research

It always helps to do your own research when you’re looking for a new card. Articles like these can give you an idea of cards that give you good value, but it always helps to get clear on your own priorities before you jump in.

Some questions to consider when you’re starting your search include:

  • What is your personal/household income?
  • How much are you willing to pay in annual fees?
  • Which is more important to you: high earn rates or flexible point redemption options? (or are you looking for a solid mix of both?
  • What kinds of perks are most important to you?
  • Do you spend more in specific categories? (if a card offers bonus earnings on groceries but you only really eat takeout, that card won’t help you as much as one that offers bonus earnings on dining and delivery)
  • Are you 65 or over? If so, is emergency travel insurance important to you?

Getting clear on these answers will help you make sure that the card(s) you’re looking at will fit your priorities and habits, and that they’ll really work for you. If a travel card is your goal, we recommend checking out our list of the Best Travel Credit Cards in Canada so that you get a good idea of what else is available and can make an educated decision.

CIBC Aventura Gold Review – Frequently Asked Questions

How to apply for the CIBC Aventura Gold Visa

Personal Requirements: You can apply for this card if you are a Canadian resident who has reached the age of majority in your province/territory of residence.

Required Minimum Income: $15,000 household income

Predicted Credit Score Requirement: 760-900 (Good to Excellent)

CIBC Aventura Gold Visa Review: Final Verdict

The CIBC Aventura Gold Visa card is an excellent premium card with a great selection of perks and benefits. It’s uncommon for a premium card that offers so much to require such a low minimum income. More often, a card with the kind of package the CIBC Aventura Gold Visa offers would require a minimum income of $60,000 or more.

The flexibility of CIBC’s Aventura Reward Points is first rate, allowing cardholders to redeem points for flights, accommodations, and experiences as well as merchandise and gift cards.

Aventura points are valuable, and the welcome bonus alone is enough for several short-haul flights. The earn rate is excellent for people who spend significant amounts on groceries and gas every month.

Our editorial team’s verdict for the CIBC Aventura Gold Visa review is unanimous: if you’re looking for a solid travel card with generous benefits and flexible redemption options, this is a great choice. It’s especially good if you have a lower household income but would still like a premium card experience.

Meg

Meg Goodmanson is a writer, editor, virtual assistant, credit card expert, and lifelong learner-of-things. A self-proclaimed nerd, Meg’s favourite thing is collecting information and presenting it in an interesting and helpful way—especially if it helps her travel for free!
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