No Fee Rewards Credit Cards

As you may know already, I’m a big fan of no fee rewards credit cards and cash back credit cards.  If you have the discipline, it’s a great way to funnel your spending to accumulate the points/cash on money that’s going to be spent anyways.  Of course, these points programs only work to your advantage if you pay off the balance every month.  Otherwise, the interest will eat you alive.

After getting emails from a couple readers about a newer MBNA cash back credit card to add to my list of no annual fee cash back credit card contenders, I decided to take a look myself.  Much to my surprise, the new offering is, in my opinion, among the best in Canada.

The new credit card star is called the MBNA PremierRewards Platinum Plus Mastercard.  The no fee cash back card offers 1% cash back starting from the first $1 that you spend with no maximum rebate.  In addition to that, the platinum card offers a comprehensive insurance package which includes: purchase insurance, extended warranty, car rental and travel accident insurance.  Seems like a winner to me!

Killing Sacred Cows Book Winner

As usual, I did a giveaway to accompany my book review of Killing Sacred Cows.  The response was tremendous as we totaled over 150 entries over a couple days.  I guess money myths are an interesting topic!  Using a random number generator, toby was selected as the lucky winner.  Congrats!

While on the topic of contests, be sure to enter the moonjar giveaway.  2 lucky readers will receive the moonjar products which will be drawn for in about a week.

Money Stories and Links

To add to the BCE take over drama, CBC announces that the BCE takeover could be delayed.

Consumerism Commentary lists 8 tips for talking about money with your significant other.

Canadian Capitalist is celebrating 4 years of blogging with 10 books to giveaway!  Be sure to enter soon as the contest ends tonight at 8pm EST.

The Digerati Life writes about the worst economic crisis since the great depression and asks “who’s to blame?”

Lazy Man and Money ponders if it’s possible to save money and the environment at the same time.

The Sun’s Financial Diary charts the quarterly GDP growth rate from 1987 – 2008.

Brip Blap asks do you need a bailout?

Money Smart Life lists some safe places to invest your money in a bad economy.

My Dollar Plan has a scary story about how an administrative error can cost you your retirement.

Generation X Finance thinks that the real estate market in the U.S is an opportunity of a lifetime for prospective home buyers.

Frugal Dad asks have you ever been embarassed to be frugal?


  1. Canadian Capitalist on November 28, 2008 at 11:59 am

    Thanks for the mention FT! Have a nice weekend.

  2. mjw2005 on November 28, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    On the terms and condition page for this card it lists an annual fee of $29.00 but on the application page it says no annual fee….

    Confusing…any know if this is no fee or not….

    Currently I am using the no fee TD Visa Rebate rewards which is similar to this card except it only pays 0.5% on the first $3000 and then 1% on the rest up to $25,000 in purchases….

  3. FrugalTrader on November 28, 2008 at 4:34 pm

    mjw, as far as i know, there is no annual fee for the card. Best thing to do is to call them to confirm. I’m torn between this MBNA card and the Costco AMEX card.

  4. Keith on November 28, 2008 at 6:23 pm

    My math tells me that if you spend >$11000 on a single credit card then the Costco AMEX will return you more cash. However since the MBNA is a MasterCard it may be accepted by many stores that do not take the AMEX card. If the MBNA it your secondary card, starting with a 1% cash back from $0 would make it ideal choice, in my opinion.

    Of course there are many other considerations such as the Costco AMEX max reward is $500/yr, insurance differences, etc. I’ve heard you can get an AMEX Gold card without an Annual Fee that will return up to 2% reading the website.

  5. FrugalTrader on November 28, 2008 at 8:03 pm

    Keith, I read/heard that the 2% AMEX was discontinued. Do you know otherwise?

  6. cannon_fodder on November 29, 2008 at 8:58 am

    I think the best credit cards are those that you can get 0% interest for many months with no annual fee, no balance transfer fee. You can simply transfer the entire amount into whatever account you want – mortgage paydown, investment account, savings account. When the TFSA comes around, you could transfer $5k into your and your spouse’s accounts.

    Of course, you eventually have to pay back the principle – a little bit each month and then one final lump sum payment – but having an interest free loan for 9, 12 even 15 months can easily net you 4%+ after tax guaranteed (think mortgage paydown).

  7. Keith on November 29, 2008 at 8:54 pm

    Hi FrugalTrader. I haven’t heard that it was discontinued, I only hold the Costco AMEX today but was going to look into the 2% rebate AMEX after this cards rebate period pays out. It’s too bad if they have discontinued that offer – I never saw it advertised on AMEX site, only in fourms – so I guess easy come easy go.

    As per Cannon_fodder comment, I agree if you are looking to borrow money the 0% then no annual fee, no balance transfer fee could be very useful.

    I suppose what ever goal is important for you will dictate the best card. Interest rate, insurances, useful point system (cash back, air miles), etc… Today cash back works great as a reward card for me … cash doesn’t expire, if cash is reward anually any changes in the plan or expiry of rewards won’t matter, cash is the most flexible reward in my opinion (not necessary the highest value reward but some cash back cards come close).

  8. Jordan Clark on November 30, 2008 at 2:59 am

    I still have my 2% AMEX gold card, it was offered to me a couple years ago, but I heard you could call Amex and specifically request it. In a months time I’m getting about $340 bucks back for free, they must hate my guts!

    Since Amex isn’t accepted everywhere I have a TD Gold Elite Visa as my back up card. It’s very similar to this MBNA card, with a 1% reward, purchase protection, extended warranty, free road side assistance (used twice already), travel & rental insurance. It’s a good card, but it normally has a high $79/annual fee but it’s free if you have a TD Select Service checking account (which is $25/month but also free with $5000 balance)


  9. H on November 30, 2008 at 4:06 am

    I just called to confirm, the Platinum Card no longer has the $29 annual fee – I have an hold MBNA card from college a long time ago (that I don’t really use) and I just got the conversion done. Guess I’ll be using it more now!!!

  10. slickster on November 30, 2008 at 12:04 pm

    Hi all,

    I got a MBNA card and there is no annual fee. The only thing i don’t like about MBNA is that they will send you cheques non-stop and call you every so often to try and enroll you into a new offering (insurance). I’m willing to live with it but just putting it out there for those who aren’t.

    If that 2% AMEX gold card still exists for no annual fee and starting from the 1rst dollar you spend, it’s safe to say it would be easily the top card.

    As for the TD Gold Elite Visa, it seems like a great value considering what it offers (despite the annual fee) assuming you’re already paying or willing to pay for roadside assistance.

  11. Acorn on November 30, 2008 at 1:16 pm

    I’m a long time Canadian Tire Options M/C (no fee) user. You are getting the Canadian Tire money if you are using this card anywhere (not necessarily at Can. Tire). Not sure how the calculate the rebate, but every time when I’m buying something (including the gift cards) I can see a substantial amount available for immediate rebate. Also promotions… Try to pay your large dental bill and you will feel the difference. By the way, next time you don’t have to explain your wife were this new fishing rod came from :=)

  12. Greg on December 1, 2008 at 11:31 pm

    If you spend more than $10000 per year, the Costco Platinum AMEX card has a better rebate than the MBNA 1% cash rebate. The Costco AMEX tops out at $500 per year, so you’d have to spend more than $36666 to max out the AMEX rebate and you’d have to spend over $50000 on the MBNA card to get to a $500 rebate.
    Another thing to take into consideration if you travel outside of Canada and the US is that some US based credit card companies convert all non Canadian dollar transactions to US dollars before converting them to Canadian dollars which can increase prices dramatically when compared to a direct currency conversion. I’m not sure if this is the case with MBNA, but I used a CitiBank mastercard to purchase something from Australia that should have cost me about $85 canadian, but after first converting to US dollars then to Canadian dollars, it ended up costing me over $100. As it turned out, AMEX doesn’t do this so I should have used the Costco AMEX card.

  13. Gustawo on August 13, 2009 at 11:30 am

    Machine Embroideries from Animals In our store. High quality embroidery designs, new designs every week.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.