Monday, July 18, 2011

Canada's Top Travel Rewards Credit Cards for 2011

Today on we posted our third annual picks for Canada's top travel rewards credit cards. New for this year is Canada's Choice, where we asked Canadians to vote for their favorite travel rewards credit cards with the results to be posted along side our rankings. We have combed over 70 different credit cards offering travel rewards for Canadians and of those there are a few that really stand out. While it is practically impossible to give this question a perfect one card answer, we can breakdown the market of Canadian Travel Rewards credit cards into five major categories that these cards fall into. Without further ado, here are the top travel rewards credit cards for 2011 as picked by along with Canada's Choice for each category:

Top Travel Points Credit Card (with annual fee)
Rewards Canada's Pick: Capital One Aspire Travel™ World MasterCard®
Canada's Choice: American Express Air Miles Platinum Credit Card

Top Travel Points Credit Card (with no annual fee)
Rewards Canada's Pick: American Express Blue Sky Credit Card
Canada's Choice: American Express Air Miles Credit Card

Top Hybrid Travel Credit Card (with annual fee)
Rewards Canada's Pick: American Express Gold Rewards Card
Canada's Choice: American Express Gold Rewards Card

Top Airline Credit Card
Rewards Canada's Pick: CIBC AeroGold Visa Infinite
Canada's Choice: American Express AeroplanPlus Platinum Card

Top Hotel Points Credit Card
Rewards Canada's Pick: (tie) Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express and Priority Club® Platinum MasterCard® from Capital One
Canada's Choice: Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express

For the complete article, details on each card plus runners up in each category please visit the full Canada's Top Travel Rewards Credit Card for 2011 page on the Rewards Canada website

Care to comment on our choices? Want to voice your opinion on the good and the bad of all the Travel Rewards Credit Cards in Canada. Share you views and experiences by leaving a comment below.

“The interest rates, fees, rewards details, benefits and other details of the Capital One product(s) described in the article may have changed since the time of publication. Please consult the product information pages on the Capital One website for accurate product details. In the event of any conflict between the product details in this article and the Capital One website, the details on the Capital One website shall prevail.”


  1. I have had the CIBC Aerogold card for 10 years. Its extremely hard to ever book a flight unless you do it one year in advance.

    I was lucky enough to book 4 tickets to Florida one year in advance. But the flight was cancelled and I ended up with a 6 hour stop over and had to fly on United which charged me for my bags. I am switching to the RBC Westjet card.

  2. I'VE had some good luck with Aeroplan even getting some last minute flights. I did however get scammed by scotiabank. They don't send your card directly and didn't notify me it was at my local branch. They wouldn't then give me my card unless I booked a 45 minute "meeting " presumably to sell other services. After all this I got my card and used it right away but 2 months passed since I signed up so they said my 30k bonus was not valid.

  3. I had CIBC Gold (aeroplan) for many years but dumped it for two reasons. (1) The aeroplan miles were only good for Air Canada which is more expensive and often doesn't even go where you want to go (2) CIBC blocked my credit card when I was on vacation and was a few days late in paying my monthly balance. Thus suddenly I could not use it where I was on vacation. There was no excuse for this since my credit and past history of paying the complete balance every month was impeccable. I no longer wanted to do business with unreliable people like that.

    I went to TD which is the top in customer service. If you're late in a payment, they simply charge you (high) interest, but they don't leave you stranded. It more effectively keeps you on schedule. TD VISA Infinity credit card is great in that your travel rewards can be used on any form of transport. However, the small print is very misleading. The many insurances are useless for people over 65, only two days were covered (their web site now says 4 days) but that is useless for a 25 day cruise or even a week in Florida; you have to take other insurance. Then, to get maximum points you have to book through the TD travel agency which (even though now operated by TD Expedia), is simply a bureaucratic booking agency and not a travel agent that will provide advice, know their client and get the desired airplane seats. For most experienced travellers, this is not a problem. However, airlines, hotel chains and cruise operators often have a policy of not undercutting the travel agent by dealing directly with the passenger/guest. They therefore refuse to speak with the client and send key information on visas, travel arrangements, etc., only to TD Expedia that doesn't know either the client or the cruise operator, cares even less, and refuses to handle such banal matters as airline seats or cruise excursion arrangements. By the time the client is made aware of the situation, it is too late to get the desired seats, excursions etc. TD is the best financial operator in Canada - from a customer perspective, but their credit card operation does not deserve the high rating it has in these articles. I stick with them only because I am free to spend my travel funds where I want and I do all my banking and investments with them.