I’m a huge fan of credit cards. They make it easier to buy things both online and offline, remove the need for me to always have cash, and give me the possibility of earning rewards for every dollar I spend. Plus, It allows me to keep track of my spending through my digital monthly statements. There’s a number of other benefits as well, depending on the card you have, such as rental car insurance, travel insurance, extended warranties, and so much more.
However, not all credit cards are equal and depending on your lifestyle, some may be better suited to you than others. In this article, I’m going to share with you some tips on finding the best credit in Canada, just for you.
How To Find The Perfect Credit Card
Before I start, I want to mention that it’s perfectly fine to have more than one credit card. In fact, I often have upwards of 5-10 credit cards at all times. This is because I maximize points for my travel needs (or wants). I also never spend more than I have, which is very important when it comes to using credit cards to earn rewards. If you can’t pay off the balance in full each month, please stay away from credit cards, especially if the main purpose is to earn rewards. If you’re paying interest, the value of the rewards will be diminished very quickly. With that being said, let’s get started.
Step 1: Determine What Type of Points You Want to Earn
Do you like to travel? Do you want to earn points that can be redeemed for flights? Frequent flyer miles are my favourite type of points to earn through credit cards because they give much more value than many other types of points, including hotel points. However, if you don’t travel much or don’t like to deal with availability issues or prefer to do “package vacations”, travel points may not be suitable. In that case, there are other types of points you can earn with credit cards. Some examples include hotel points, cash back, reward points tied to the credit card program (usually redeemable for products and experiences), and even specialized programs such as SCENE points, which are redeemed at Cineplex. There are far too many cards to list here but you can easily check some of the best credit cards in Canada at www.lowestrates.ca.
Step 2: Determine Other Important Credit Card Features
Would you like the best travel insurance or rental car insurance attached to your credit card? Would you like a concierge service to handle travel requests? Do you want a business-friendly credit card? Maybe you just want something super simple and the only thing you care about is earning minimal reward points for minimal effort. Whatever it is, it’s important to know because every single credit card offers something different. Some don’t include rental car insurance at all. Some don’t include travel medical insurance while others include it for up to 28 days of a trip, saving you hundreds of dollars in the process. Another important thing to note is that some cards, especially the ones with annual fees, earn you more points for each dollar you spend. Some also earn more points for certain expenditures such as groceries and fuel.
Step 3: Determine Whether You Want to Pay a Fee
Some credit cards have no annual fee while others have annual fees as high as $700! Obviously, credit cards with annual fees carry more benefits but you’ll have to determine if they’re worth the yearly fee. For example, the American Express Platinum Card has a fee of $700 annually. However, it comes with a healthy dose of bonus points, a $200 annual travel statement, access to VIP airport lounges all around the world, and a host of other features. At the same time, $700 is a lot of money and if you don’t travel often, it may not be worth it. Then there’s the American Express Gold Card, which is only $150 annually and also comes with important travel features such as medical and car rental insurance. Even some no-fee credit cards have great features so it’s important to do your research.
Step 4: Apply For the Credit Card!
Depending on an array of things, you may or may not qualify for certain credit cards. For some, you need a certain annual income while others may need a high credit score. Each card will have its own rules but if you think you can qualify, the best things to do is to apply. Please note: From what I’ve heard (and I’m not an expert), applying for credit cards within six months of applying for a mortgage is not a good idea. It’s also typically better to apply for many at the same time versus applying for many throughout the year. If you’re only applying for one, don’t worry about it. Again, in my personal experience, none of this has been a concern. In fact, my credit score has risen dramatically since learning all about travel hacking.
Step 5: Earn Rewards For Everyday Spending
My favourite part of credit card rewards is that I can use them for everyday expenses such as groceries, fuel, and my phone bill. It doesn’t cost me anything to use it, makes it more convenient, and allows me to earn free flights each and every year! For me, it’s a no-brainer.
Earn Free Flights Around the World
If travel is your thing and you’re interested in learning everything you need to know about maximizing credit card usage and earning hundreds of thousands of miles, consider joining Canadian Free Flyers. For as little as $47, you can learn about utilizing frequent flyer miles to travel around the world for almost free.
Bonus Tip: American Express has an incredible rewards program and by-far one of the best credit cards in Canada. The best offer now for someone just getting into the world of frequent flyer miles is the American Express Gold Card. I have one and highly recommend it. Apply here and get 25,000 bonus points, enough for a free flight within Canada and the USA.
Questions? Let me know in the comments below…