I am a big fan of credit card rewards programs, like cash back or travel, especially those with generous spending rewards coupled with a solid insurance package.  One such card that comes to mind is my favorite free card of all time, the MBNA SPG credit card.   This card gives a healthy 2-5% return on spending along with a comprehensive insurance package which included extended warranty, purchase assurance and car rental collision coverage.  Sadly, the SPG card has been discontinued by MBNA, but rumour is that it will be picked up again by AMEX.  More on this in a future column.

When evaluating credit cards, I’ve always considered the extended warranty offered to be an afterthought, but a minimum requirement.   Credit card extended warranties will typically double the manufacturers warranty up to a maximum of 1 extra year.  Even though it’s nice to have peace of mind when making a large purchase,  never did I think that I would ever use it.  That is until the hard drive on my laptop, which was purchased during boxing week sales of 2007, failed.

It was early December 2009, I was in the middle of writing an article for MDJ when the hard drive failure happened.  After some mild profanities, my thoughts came around to finding a solution which then lead to a question that often goes through my head,  “what is this going to cost me?”

It occured to me that the date I purchased the laptop (late Dec 2007) and the extended warranty that my credit card offered allowed me to make a claim.  As the laptop warranty was for one year, the credit card extended warranty would bring the warranty up to the end of Dec 2009.  As luck may have it, the hard drive failure may have been good timing after all.

With that, I grabbed the telephone and phoned the number on the back of my credit card, spoke with a rep who forwarded me to their insurance division.   After explaning the situation, date of purchase, date of hard drive failure, she explained all the paperwork required.  In addition, they would send out a form to be filled out which needed to be mailed back to them including the required documentation.

The documentation required includes:

  • Copy of original store receipt
  • Copy of statement indicating the purchase
  • Copy of manufacturers warranty
  • Copy of repair quote/bill

Since the laptop is my preferred blogging tool, I decided to get it repaired right away and send them the bill instead of waiting for them to reimburse a repair quote.  All in all, it’s a fairly painless process providing that the documentation is available.

I can see many people not taking advantage of the extended warranty service as most do not keep their paperwork in a retrievable fashion.  I’ll be honest, my filing system could use a bit of work, but it’s good enough to retrieve information when it’s required.

How do I file my paperwork?  When making larger purchases, I keep the original store receipt along with the warranty information together within a labelled file in my filing cabinet.  That way, if anything goes wrong, I can either take it back to the store, or use the warranty if it’s still available.  I also keep all my credit card statements in the filing cabinet, but they get moved to a “tax box” in the basement come year end.

Question for you, have you ever used the extended warranty feature on your credit card?


  1. This is why I signed up with ING Direct on January 20, 2010 at 10:55 am

    Cool article, I’ve always wondered how to make a claim on a credit card; now I know how.

  2. lb71 on January 20, 2010 at 12:03 pm

    Is the extended warranty standard on most credit cards, or do you need to check your agreement?

  3. FrugalTrader on January 20, 2010 at 12:07 pm

    lb71, yes, you’ll have to check your credit card agreement as it’s not standard. Easiest thing is to google your credit card and check out the “benefits” listed.

    • Janice wreggitt on June 24, 2019 at 3:51 pm

      I know this is about extended warranty but if a person disputed a credit card charge and the bank customer client care couldn’t make decision and took the issue to MasterCard it self for direction or decision 1/ who makes the decision and is the decision arbitration that is binding. Cause if the issue was in favour of merchant can the purchaser take legal action in court?????

  4. Ramona on January 20, 2010 at 12:15 pm

    So timely – thanks! My son just broke his glasses yesterday, and my first thought was did I put that purchase on the card with extended warranty? Now I know exactly what is required in order to file a claim, thank you.

    It’s a coverage that I never even considered using previously, until a coworker advised that she used it often, which made me haul out my agreement papers and find out what I was covered for. I’ve been more careful since to ensure that credit card makes the purchases for which I may need the warranty.

    Again – thanks FT – right on the money.

  5. Daniel on January 20, 2010 at 1:06 pm

    Did they pay for it? I don’t see a resolution.

  6. Cam Birch on January 20, 2010 at 4:06 pm

    I just finished using my CC for an extended warranty. My wife’s cell phone decided to stop working so I contacted AMEX and went through the paperwork, mailed out the phone and presto not long after (2 weeks or so) had a fixed phone. The nice thing is they even offered to give me the cash for the repair costs to purchase a new phone with (turned it down as its pretty much impossible to get a nice phone for under $200).

    I’m pretty happy with the process and I think I will be changing my filing system to help out with these sorts of things in the future.

  7. Kathryn on January 20, 2010 at 6:41 pm

    This is great advice about how to make a claim. Did they reimburse you even though you went ahead and got the repairs?

    I’m going to be extra careful to keep all receipts filed from here on in. I’m not sure it would have occurred to me to check the extended warranty on the credit card.

  8. Iamphysio on January 21, 2010 at 12:41 am

    I’ve used the extended warranty on a lawn mower this past summer. It died after 4 faithful years of service. After my initial frustration I thought about the extended warranty from my Citibank Drivers Edge Mastercard – still my vote on best card to carry – 2-3% of purchase price accumulates towards the purchase of any new or used vehicle of any make or model. Accumulated $3,000 which we used on the purchase of a used Honda minivan without any problems at all (sorry for the aside). The original warranty was 4 years and the mastercard extended this to 5 – same documentation required as per Frugal Trader – and mastercard sent me the money after repairs were done. Awesome!

  9. Greg on January 22, 2010 at 8:45 pm

    I also have the Citibank Drivers Edge Mastercard. I bought a new sound system about 10 years ago and 13 months after purchase it died. I called Citibank who forwarded me to the insurance company. Similar procedure to FT, I had the system fixed and they sent me a cheque for the full amount.

  10. cannon_fodder on January 23, 2010 at 5:04 pm

    So lamphysio, was that a “riding” lawn mower? I mean it is the Drivers Edge MC, right?

  11. chris on January 25, 2010 at 5:15 pm

    surprisingly not all cards with an annual fee have this.
    i used to have a cibc aerogold card and it did not offer this service despite a $120 annual fee. i switched to a cibc dividends card and it had this service, and the card was free! dont assume all expensive gold and platinum cards carry this feature. read the fine print!

  12. Robin on January 26, 2010 at 3:05 am

    First before you purchase something you should be aware of it’s warranty and other useful details/agreement on your purchase. But not all of credit cards can give you what you’ve expected to. So thanks FT for the thoughts!

    Excellent post!

  13. Iamphysio on January 27, 2010 at 2:23 am

    LOL Cannon_fodder!

  14. Larry on January 27, 2010 at 6:07 pm

    Not an extended warranty claim, but a theft claim. A few years back my wife had purchased a jogging stroller for about $200 bucks on her Visa. About a week later it was stolen from our back yard. Her sister (who worked for RBC) asked if we had bought it with our Visa and we had, so we put in a claim and it was reimbursed no problem. One of her friends also dropped a new Camcorder in a hot tub by mistake and this claim was reimbursed as well.

  15. a funding consultant on February 9, 2010 at 5:31 am

    This is my first time i visit here. I found so many entertaining stuff in your blog, especially its discussion. From the tons of comments on your articles, I guess I am not the only one having all the enjoyment here! Keep up the excellent work.

  16. FrugalTrader on February 14, 2010 at 1:46 pm

    Daniel, sorry, I must have missed your question. Yes, I received a cheque for the amount of the repair.

  17. Peter B on April 15, 2010 at 3:47 am

    I have a MBNA Platinum Plus MC and when I phoned about the warranty on some cordless phones that we had purchased I was told that we had to register the product within 30 days of purchase. Something that we have never done with any electronics purchased with this credit card. Not too happy but going to give them a call and ‘talk’ about this unnecessary requirement.

    Anyone else run into this requirement with their credit cards?


    • FrugalTrader on April 15, 2010 at 8:53 am

      I didn’t get that speel when I told them my laptop broke. I’d call again and get another rep. BTW, I used MBNA as well.

  18. Geoff on May 14, 2012 at 2:15 pm

    Does making a claim thru your credit card affect your home inusrance premiums?

  19. FrugalTrader on May 14, 2012 at 3:21 pm

    @Geoff, I don’t think so. Are they somehow related?

  20. Bilal on September 10, 2012 at 7:56 pm

    How long does it take for them to process the claim? In my case, I am looking for their approval before I go to Apple to repair my iPad.

  21. Harold Young on January 13, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    Speaking of credit card extended warranties – I’ve used them several times over the past years. I’ve just come up against a new wrinkle with BMO Canadian Mastercard – one must pre-register a purchase in excess of $500.00. I was unaware of the clause at the time – my claim has been denied. Just wondering – HAS ANYONE COME UP AGAINST THIS CLAUSE?

  22. Barb Repas on March 20, 2018 at 12:26 am

    If you purchase an extended warranty like Applecare does the credit card extend after that expires?

    • FT on March 21, 2018 at 1:35 pm

      I don’t believe that the credit card will extend after purchasing an “extended warranty”.

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