Canada’s Best Credit Cards of 2014

Which cash-back card gets you the most cash? Which travel card gets you flying faster? Our 4th annual ranking has all the answers

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From the September/October 2014 issue of the magazine.

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In some ways, choosing a credit card is like choosing a bottle of wine: If you don’t do any research and just grab the bottle with the most attractive label, you might regret it later. Similarly, if you choose your credit card based on a special offer or just because it’s offered by your bank, you may be in for an unpleasant surprise. There are more than 200 cards on the market and comparing rewards plans and other features is almost impossible, yet there is a real range out there when it comes to the value and convenience they offer.

Play: Mark Brown talks credit cards with 680 News’ Mike Eppel 

That’s where MoneySense comes in. We’ve done the hard work for you. We’ve read the fine print in every cardholder agreement, spent hours on the phone with customer service and even combed through credit card statements to better understand how they work and what type of spenders they benefit. We even factor in fees and the value of reward points over five years, to ensure we’re not swayed by large sign-up bonuses. Canada’s Best Credit Cards 2014* shows how much a typical user charging $2,000 to his card each month might earn back in rewards. Just remember to keep your actual spending habits in mind when making your choice. If you always pay off your balance in full, feel free to go for a rewards cards with all the frills. If you don’t, stick to a low-rate card for now, or you’ll end up paying for someone else’s rewards with your interest payments.


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Best cash-back cards

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Best retail rewards cards

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Best low-rate cards

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Best business cards

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Best travel cards

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Best student cards


TRY: Credit Card Selector Tool »


Published by MoneySense™ magazine, the Canada’s Best Credit Cards 2014 ranking evaluated certain credit cards on category-specific criteria, based on publicly available data as of July 2014. Usage assumptions made to calculate the value of the rewards may not reflect your own use. The Canadian credit cards available and the specific credit card terms may have changed since the data was compiled. Canada’s Best Credit Cards 2014 ranking is created for information purposes only and is not intended as financial advice. The information provided is not guaranteed and no representations or warranties can be made as to the accuracy or completeness of such information. Visit moneysense.ca/cbcc14 for full CCBC14 methodology.

Publié par le magazine MoneySenseMC, le classement Canada’s Best Credit Cards 2014 a évalué certaines cartes de crédit canadiennes selon des critères liés à une catégorie en fonction de données accessibles au public en date de juillet 2014. Les hypothèses sur l’utilisation qui ont servi à calculer la valeur des récompenses peuvent ne pas refléter votre propre utilisation. Les cartes de crédit canadiennes offertes et les modalités propres aux cartes de crédit peuvent avoir été modifiées depuis la compilation des données. Le classement Canada’s Best Credit Cards 2014 est créé aux fins d’information seulement et n’a pas pour but de donner des conseils financiers. L’information fournie n’est pas garantie et il n’y a aucune représentation ni garantie à l’égard de l’exactitude et de l’exhaustivité de l’information. Consultez moneysense.ca/cbcc14fr pour la méthodologie complète.

6 comments on “Canada’s Best Credit Cards of 2014

  1. Just a heads up, I did the calculator and the American express gold cash back card came up as the number one for me. When I called them today, they told me that 3 weeks ago, they stopped offering that card and have replaced it with a new one that offers just 1.5% cash back. Please update your article & calculator. This is super annoying.

    Reply

    • Thanks for the note Eileen. Looks like they discontinued the card after we went to press. We have removed it from our tool.

      Reply

  2. I for one have had Aeoplan CIBC & now TD cads since 1982 but when my next annual fee renewal come up I will cancel it Aeroplan claims it has upgraded the reward plan but when I tried to get a Vancouver to Honolulu for next Feb the only availability was through US with long stopovers & one option was to fly back to Toronto from Honolulu than back to Vancouver I even tried the new Market Fare option but came up with 3 stopovers & 23 hours to get to Honolulu Frustrated I went to Expedia for TD using TD Platinum rewards & booked a direct AC flight under 7 hours plus had other options 1 stop through the US at between 8-10 hours Using my TD rewards I had to pay just over $400 cash for the usual direct flight which AC had a Tango fare return listed at $1040 using my TD points that were available I really like the idea that you can fly any airline use any available seat anytime & use your available points to even pay a portion of the fare BTM

    Reply

    • Actually the flight departed from Kelowna a 1 hour time to Vancover include in the price One really has to understand the new Aeroplan rules Also the taxes & fees were higher with the so called free reward than booking direct with the airline

      Reply

  3. I tried the selector tool – it got one item wrong – it suggested I use an HSBC card for foreign purchases to get 2% cashback on out-of-country disbursements – but ANY card from Chase Canada will waive the 2.5% currency conversion fee AND provide 1% credit with whatever of their affinity cards you happen to choose. And for the record, my experience is that MasterCard exchange rates are 1% better than Visa’s – so get a MasterCard

    (For the moment, and until they go bankrupt I use Chase’s Sears Mastercard for my out of country purchases)

    For people who spend lots at restaurants there is Amex’s no-fee Costco cashback card, which provides 3% cashback on restaurant purchases, 2% on gasoline and ‘up to 1%’ on everything else. Though what may happen with that card after their agreement with Costco ends later this year is anyone’s guess.

    Reply

  4. I have found the Canadian Tire Gas Advantage Mastercard works best for me. I drive a lot, and saving 10 cents/litre really adds up.

    Reply

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