Canadians love traveling, they always want to embark on trips and adventures, whether by road, sea, or air.
Although traveling might be expensive, with a great travel credit card in your hands, taking that trip to escape the winter or going abroad for a summer vacation can suddenly become more affordable.
Regardless of how often you travel or whatever style you choose, the best travel credit cards in Canada are great for earning a combination of rewards like free airport lounges, sign-up bonuses, comprehensive travel insurance, and travel perks to enhance your travel experience with elite benefits.
There are many excellent travel credit cards, but a few stand out from the rest. In this article, I have compiled a list of the seven best travel credit cards in Canada that are known for excellent rewards and impressive welcome bonuses.
Without a beat, let’s get right into it.
The Best Travel Credit Cards in Canada
To help you with a perfect choice, I have come up with this list of the best travel credit cards in Canada.
Make your choice based on the travels you enjoy, your purchases, how you use your credit cards, and which additional benefits suit your lifestyle.
1. Tangerine World Mastercard
The Tangerine World Mastercard is a zero-fee cash back card that allows you to customize accelerated earning categories and maximize your rewards. The reward flexibility and rich welcome bonus make it a clear winner among other cards.
There’s no limit to the amount of money-back rewards you earn with the Tangerine World Mastercard. No monthly limits; as long as you spend, you will earn money-back rewards.
You can earn 2% on all eligible purchases, including groceries, gas, parking and public transportation, restaurants and a lot more.
By far, the Tangerine World Mastercard is undoubtedly one of the best travel credit cards with no annual fee in Canada.
- Extended warranty and purchase protection
- Mastercard Exclusive Experiences
- Mobile device insurance
- Rental car collision/loss damage insurance
- On-demand and subscription services
- Mastercard Airport Experiences provided by LoungeKey
2. National Bank World Elite Mastercard
The National Bank World Elite Mastercard is one of Canada’s most notable travel credit cards. It offers comprehensive travel and medical insurance coverage for most events and extends its coverage to hard-to-insure older travelers (individuals over the age of 65).
This travel credit card also offers annual travel refund and unlimited access to the lounge at Montreal’s Trudeau Airport. It has a $150 annual fees that is usually waived for the first year.
You earn 5 points for every $1 spent on groceries and restaurants, 2 points on recurring payments, gas and electric car charging, and National Bank of Canada’s A la carte Travel Program, and 1 point on everything else you spend on.
This amazing travel credit card offers you 30,000 points when you spend above $5,000 on purchases within the first three months (offer lasts till January 13, 2023). The $150 annual refund for travel expenses on seat selection, airport parking and airline ticket upgrades, makes it a card to consider.
- Comprehensive travel insurance coverage
- Departure flight delay insurance
- Baggage insurance in the event of delay, theft, or loss
- VIP access to the lounge of the National Bank at Montreal-Trudeau Airport
- Excellent travel insurance for travelers between the ages of 65 to 75
- Includes new mobile device insurance up to $1,000 which protects against accidental damage, loss or theft.
- Annual refund of up to $150 for travel expenses like airport parking, seat selection, check-in fees, etc.
- The income requirement makes the credit card not available to everyone
- The credit card has a monthly cap of $2,500 in spending to earn bonus points. Any purchase above this threshold will earn bonus points at the rate of 2 points per $1.
3. Marriott Bonvoy American Express
The Marriott Bonvoy American Express offers Canadians the best rewards for hotel stays. This fine travel credit card comes with a fantastic bonus of 50,000 points, comprehensive travel insurance and an additional free hotel night each year after the first year.
You can earn 6X points on eligible purchases at hotels participating in Marriot Bonvoy, 3X points on dining at any U.S. restaurants, 3X points at booked flights with airlines and 2X points on each dollar spent on other eligible purchases.
You also enjoy up to $300 in statement credits each year of your card membership at hotels participating in the Marriot Bonvoy program.
- Anniversary perk
- Free night award
- The Priority Pass Select offers unlimited access to over 1,200 lounges
- No foreign transaction fees
- Premium internet access
- Car rental loss and damage insurance
- Baggage insurance plan
- Trip cancellation, trip delay and interruption insurance
4. American Express Cobalt
The American Express Cobalt Card reigns supreme when we talk about premium benefits. It is the best card for daily spending. It offers an excellent way to maximize your points on everyday purchases.
The American Express Cobalt Card covers not only travel flights, hotels, and vacation packages but also gas, taxis, public transport, and Uber trips.
With the Membership Rewards program, you can get 5X the points you spend on eligible eats and drinks in Canada, 3X the points you spend on eligible streaming and 2X the points you spend on transit and gas purchases.
For frequent flyers, the American Express Cobalt card offers a staggering $1,874 in rewards in their first year.
- Multiple reward redemption options
- Comprehensive travel insurance, including car rental, emergency travel, lost or stolen baggage, flight and baggage delay, and travel accident insurance
- $12.99 monthly fees
- Purchase protection plan and extended warranty
- Access to VIP perks
- Free supplementary cards
- No travel medical coverage for Canadians over 65
- Airport lounge access isn’t available
5. Scotiabank Gold American Express Card
The Scotiabank Gold American Express Card offers lots of rewards on spending. It provides 5X scene+ on every $1 CAD you spend on eligible dining, grocery and entertainment purposes.
It also offers 3X Scene+ points on every $1 CAD you spend on eligible gas, daily transit, and eligible select streaming services.
The Scotiabank Gold American Express Card has a 0% intro period for balance transfers and $0 foreign exchange fees.
It is one of Scotiabank’s best credit cards, offering a variety of redemption offers and a top-notch earning rate.
- The American Express Invites gives you special access to events.
- Complimentary 24/7 concierge services
- Purchase security and extended warranty
- No foreign transaction fees
- Comprehensive travel insurance, including flight delay, delayed or lost baggage insurance, travel accident, car rental, hotel burglary and travel emergency medical.
- Discounted Priority Pass membership with access to 600+ VIP airport lounges worldwide
- If you don’t use your points within 12 months of the purchase date, the points will expire
- The bonus rewards rates drop to 1X flat rate after a $50,000 annual spend
6. BMO AIR MILES World Elite Mastercard
The BMO AIR MILES World Elite Mastercard is a card with one of the best-earning rates among the AIR MILES credit cards in Canada.
With the BMO travel credit card, you can earn Miles for cash rewards and redeem your money back, or earn Dream Rewards and get travels, gift cards and merchandise.
For every $12 spent at any AIR MILES partners, you earn 3 miles and $1 when you spend anywhere else.
This card also offers a 15% discount on AIR MILES flights within North America with zero blackout periods, comprehensive insurance benefits, and two free VIP airport lounge passes annually.
- Premium insurance for your travels
- Concierge services
- Free access to over 1 million Wi-FI hotspots
- Extended warranty and purchase protection
- Save 25% off rentals
- Access to airport lounges with a complimentary membership in Mastercard Airport Experiences provided by LoungeKey
7. RBC Visa Infinite Avion
The RBC Visa Infinite Avion is appealing for many reasons. It is flexible and traveller-friendly and offers a welcome bonus of 35,000 points.
With this card, you can earn RBC Reward points at 1 point for every $1 charged and 1.25 points for travel-related purchases.
You can use the points you earn for travels or convert them to airline partners, like WestJet Rewards, American Airlines Advantage, Cathay Pacific Asia Miles, or the British Airways Executive Club.
You can also use your points for anything, from paying bills to redeeming gift cards and merchandise at top brands like Apple. You have the freedom to use your points your way and make the most as an Avioner.
- Travel easily with emergency medical insurance and trip cancellation/interruption insurance.
- Access to an ever-growing catalogue of exclusive experiences, benefits and offers.
- Choose any airline, flight, and at any time, with no blackout or seat restrictions.
- Travel anywhere you want with as low as 15,000 RBC Rewards points.
8. TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite
The TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite Card is one of the best cards for collecting Aeroplan points. If you need a card that will allow you to enjoy exclusive travel benefits and earn Aeroplan points daily, this card is right for you.
You get rewarded with Aeroplan points for every gas, bill, or grocery purchase. For every $1 spent on eligible gas, grocery and Air Canada purchases, you earn 1.5 points.
When you link your TD card with your Starbucks Rewards account, you earn 50% more Aeroplan points at Starbucks.
You earn 1 point for every $1 spent on other purchases from your card and 2X points when you pay with your card and provide your Aeroplan number at Aeroplan partner brands and online retailers via the Aeroplan eStore.
- Complimentary Visa Infinite Concierge
- Exclusive access to luxury hotels (Visa Infinite Luxury Hotel Collection), access to prized chefs and acclaimed wines (Visa Infinite Dining Series) and access to curated events across Canada (Visa Infinite Entertainment Access).
- Comprehensive travel insurance benefits including travel medical insurance, flight/trip delay insurance, auto rental collision/loss damage insurance and lots more
- Earn big rewards on little things
- Easy and manageable payment plans
- Increased convenience and security when you shop online
How The Best Travel Credit Cards in Canada Compare
American Express Cobalt
20.99% / 21.99%
Scotiabank Gold American Express Card
19.99% / 22.99 %
BMO AIR MILES World Elite Mastercard
19.99% / 22.99 %
RBC Visa Infinite Avion
19.99% / 22.99%
TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite
19.99% / 22.99 %
Tangerine World Mastercard®
$100 welcome bonus
Marriott Bonvoy American Express
16.49% / 25.49%
50, 000 points
National Bank World Etite Mastercard
20.99 / 22.49
What is a Travel Credit Card?
A travel credit card allows you to earn rewards and discounts, which you can redeem toward travel. You might even score a free night at your favourite hotels or free tickets to great airlines.
Travel credit cards offer many benefits and rewards that can leverage your spending habits. From first-class seats, complimentary upgrades, and free meals to exclusive airport lounges, these cards offer you the best benefits designed to enhance your travel experience.
Why Get a Travel Credit Card?
Travel credit cards can help you save money on travel expenses through their numerous redemption points or miles. By using these cards for your everyday purchases, you collect points or miles, which you can exchange for discounts on flights, car rentals and accommodations.
Some travel credit cards also offer you added perks like VIP airport lounge access, priority boarding and complimentary checked baggage.
Some also offer extensive insurance benefits, like emergency medical, car rental collision, loss or damage, flight interruption and cancellation, etc.
Final Thoughts on Best Travel Credit Cards Canada
This list of travel credit cards Canada offers you the best among many travel credit cards.
Each of these cards is unique in its annual fees, reward and earn rates, travel insurance coverage and lots more. Take your time to choose the travel credit card that suits your preferences.
Regardless of your preferences, one or two cards will satisfy your needs and save you money. Go ahead and apply for them.
FAQs on Best Travel Credit Cards Canada
Do travel credit card rewards expire?
Yes. Most times travel credit card rewards can expire. Most airline or hotel loyalty programs have a defined expiry date of 12 – 18 months.
Do credit cards have travel insurance?
Yes. Travel credit cards provide extensive coverage that protects you in medical emergencies, loss or theft, delays and more.
Do you need a credit card to travel?
Technically, you don’t need a credit card to travel. But discounts on flights and hotels, extensive insurance coverage, and other added perks make travelling with a credit card much more effortless.
What are the best travel credit cards for students in Canada?
Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card is best for its flexible cash back, which makes it suitable for students in Canada.
Hi, I'm Adeola Adegoke. I am a licensed Insurance Broker in Manitoba, and I hold a master’s degree in Mathematical Sciences (with a major in Financial Modeling) from the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS), Tanzania.
Also, I have a second master's degree in Statistics from the University of Regina, and I am currently pursuing my Ph.D. in Statistics at the University of Manitoba.
The primary purpose of Money Reverie is to help everyday Canadians make better financial decisions by providing up-to-date financial news and information, reports, product reviews, and government programs.