MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard Review

MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard Review
  • Annual Cost
  • Earn Rate
  • Perks and Rewards
  • Customer Service
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MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Review Summary:

The MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard is a no-fee rewards card with flexible points redemption and excellent travel rewards value. Featured on our Best Travel Credit Cards in Canada list as the Best No-Fee Travel Rewards card for 2021, the MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard is a great choice for people looking to earn rewards points without paying an annual fee or worrying about a minimum income requirement.

In our MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard review, we give you all the details on this excellent no-fee rewards card. We look at MBNA’s flexible points redemption options, show you how this free card compares to MBNA’s premium card, and finally, put the MBNA Platinum Plus Rewards Mastercard head to head against BMO’s Air Miles Mastercard.

Pros

  • No annual fee
  • Flexible points redemption
  • $50 welcome bonus
  • Solid collection of perks

Cons

  • No travel insurance
  • Mediocre earn rate

If you’re on the hunt for a new rewards credit card, it pays to pick one that’s recognized as one of the best in Canada. Our MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus review gives you the all-details look at our favourite No-Fee Travel Card from our Best Travel Credit Cards round-up.  It also looks at the differences between MBNA’s no-fee option and the $120/year MBNA Rewards World Elite Card so you can have a full picture of MBNA’s reward card offerings. And finally, it sets out to see just how the MBNA Platinum Plus Rewards Mastercard stacks up against a close competitor: the BMO Air Miles Mastercard. 

The MBNA Platinum Plus Rewards Card is a flexible rewards card that allows cardholders to choose how they want to redeem their points (travel rewards are popular, as are statement credits). It has a decent earn rate for a no-fee card, with accelerated earning in multiple categories. It also has a generous welcome bonus (never a guarantee for a no-fee card).

MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard Review: The Numbers

  • Annual Fee: $0 ($0 per additional card)
  • Minimum Income: None
  • Interest Rate: 19.99% on purchases, 24.99% on cash advances

MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard Welcome Bonus

  • Earn 5,000 points ($25 value) if $500 is spent within the first 90 days.
  • Earn a bonus of 5,000 points if you opt for paperless statements.
  • For the first 90 days, earn 4 points per $1 spent on restaurants, groceries, digital media, membership, and household utilities (limit of $10,000 spent)

Earn Rate

  • 2 points per $1 spent on restaurants, groceries, digital media, membership, and household utilities (up to an annual cap of $10,000 spent in each category)
  • 1 point per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases

Travel Insurance Coverage

MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus doesn’t offer any travel insurance sadly.

Perks And Benefits

  • Annual birthday bonus of 10% of the total number of points earned in the 12 months before the cardholder’s birthday month (max of 10,000 points)
  • At least 10% savings on base rental rates at participating Avis Rent A Car and Budget Rent A Car locations in Canada and the US, or 5% internationally.
  • 1 year extended warranty
  • 90 days purchase protection
  • $1000 mobile device insurance

About MBNA Rewards Points

One of the best things about MBNA’s rewards points is the flexibility, and it’s won this card a spot on multiple lists of the top no-fee cards in Canada.

You can redeem your MBNA Rewards Points for a wide range of rewards including:

  • Merchandise and gift cards through the MBNA Rewards Catalogue
  • Travel (the redemption value for travel is 100 points for $1, also redeemed through the MBNA Rewards Catalogue)
  • A statement credit applied to your credit card balance
  • A cash back option paid via cheque (5,000 points equals $25 cash back)

We appreciate a card that lets us choose how to redeem our points and gives us great value when we do it!

MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard vs MBNA Rewards World Elite Mastercard

MBNA has two tiers of Rewards cards: the no-fee Platinum Plus Mastercard and the World Elite Mastercard, which has an annual fee of $120. To put our MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard review in context, our editorial team looked at the two tiers of cards side by side to see how they compare.  

Card Name:MBNA Rewards Platinum PlusMBNA Rewards World Elite
Fee$0$120
Interest rate19.99%/24.99%19.99%/24.99%
Minimum IncomeNone$80,000 personal/$150,000 household
Welcome bonusUp to 10,000 MBNA Rewards Points4 points per $1 on bonus earning categories for 3 monthsUp to 30,000 MBNA Rewards Points 
Earn rate2 points per $1 spent on restaurants, groceries, digital media, membership, and household utilities ($10,000 max annual spend per category)1 point per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases5 points per $1 spent on restaurants, groceries, digital media, membership, and household utilities ($50,000 max annual spend per category)1 point per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases 
PerksBirthday bonus (10% of earnings to a max of 10,000 points)Avis and Budget Rent A Car discounts1 year extended warranty90 days purchase protectionBirthday bonus (10% of earnings to a max of 15,000 points)Avis and Budget Rent A Car discounts90 days price protection1 year extended warranty90 days purchase protection
Insurance$1000 mobile device insurance$1000 mobile device insuranceTravel medical insurance (under 65, $2 million for 21 days)Delayed/lost baggage insurance (up to $1,000 per insured person)Flight/trip delay insurance (up to $500 per person)Rental car insurance (21 days)Common carrier accident insurance (up to $1 million)Unexpected return home (up to $2,000 per person, $25,000 per trip)

As expected, the World Elite Mastercard offers a higher earn rate, a better welcome bonus, and more perks. It also offers comprehensive travel insurance, which is standard with a card at a $120-139 price point.

The Platinum Plus card’s lack of travel insurance isn’t particularly surprising, though—when it comes to no-fee cards, it’s more surprising when they do have travel insurance. For a no-fee rewards card, MBNA’s offering is solid.

MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard vs BMO Air Miles Mastercard

Our editorial team also put MBNA’s no-fee rewards Mastercard up against a close competitor: the BMO Air Miles Mastercard. BMO’s no-fee Air Miles Mastercard is also a no-fee card and it features a points system with flexible redemption: Air Miles can be redeemed for travel, cashback, or merchandise. Here’s what we found:

MBNA Rewards Mastercards Compared

Card Name:MBNA Rewards Platinum PlusBMO Air Miles Mastercard
Fee$0$0
Interest rate19.99%/24.99%19.99%/22.99%
Minimum IncomeNone$15,000
Welcome bonusUp to 10,000 MBNA Rewards Points:4 points per $1 on bonus earning categories for 3 months800 Air Miles plus an introductory balance transfer rate of 1.99% for 9 months with a 1% balance transfer fee.  
Earn rate2 points per $1 spent on restaurants, groceries, digital media, membership, and household utilities ($10,000 max annual spend per category)1 point per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases3 Miles per $25 spent at Air Miles partners1 Mile per $25 spent everywhere elseEarn points twice by showing your Air Miles card at partner locations 
PerksBirthday bonus (10% of earnings to a max of 10,000 points)10% off Avis and Budget Rent A Car rentals1 year extended warranty90 days purchase protection25% off National Car Rental and Alamo Rent a Car rentals1 year extended warranty90 days purchase protection
Insurance$1000 mobile device insurance$1000 mobile device insurance

Both cards feature flexible points redemption and acceptable earn rates. The BMO Air Miles Mastercard offers bonus earnings at Air Miles partners, which can be an advantage if you happen to shop at Air Miles partners frequently.

If you don’t shop at Air Miles partners often, or if you like to shop at a wider variety of stores, you might prefer the MBNA Platinum Plus Mastercard’s category system, which doesn’t limit where you shop, just which general categories earn you more points.

Both cards offer a welcome bonus, although the BMO Air Miles Mastercard has a slightly better value when points are redeemed for travel. They also offer similar perks—the MBNA Platinum Plus Mastercard gives cardholders less of a discount on car rentals, but they do have an annual birthday gift of 10% of that year’s earned points. The winner here will depend entirely on whether you rent cars frequently (or at all).

And finally, as far as insurance goes, neither the MBNA Platinum Plus Rewards Mastercard nor the BMO Air Miles Mastercard offer any travel insurance…but they do both offer $1000 mobile device insurance, which is honestly not bad for a free credit card.

Conclusion: we don’t have a clear winner here. Both cards are good, and it depends both on your shopping habits and on what works best for you perks-wise.

MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard Review: FAQ

How to apply for the MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard

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: None

Predicted Credit Score Requirement: 725-759 (Good to Very Good)

MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard Review: Final Verdict

The MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard is an excellent no-fee rewards card that offers flexible points redemption. It can be a loyalty card, a cash-back card, and a travel card, all under the same umbrella.

While the MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard doesn’t earn points as quickly as a card with an annual fee, it has a generous earn rate and some solid perks as well as a welcome bonus, none of which are guaranteed when it comes to a no-fee card.

The official verdict of our MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard review is that it’s absolutely a card worth considering if you’re looking at no-fee options, particularly a no-fee travel card.

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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