Monday, April 25, 2016

Scotiabank More Rewards Visa Card to enter market as a very strong no-fee card competitor

A couple of weeks ago Scotiabank and the Overwaitea Group from B.C. announced a new partnership that will see Scotiabank issue the co-branded More Rewards Visa card. Now we haven't covered much of the More Rewards program here on Rewards Canada as it has been typically a weak program compared to many others (just like we don't cover Shoppers Optimum very much) but the Overwaitea group has been working hard on the program and although they no longer have their partnership with Alaska Airlines they have a new travel program that when tied into this new no-fee Visa card from Scotiabank will make the program one to watch out for.

The card will officially launch on May 30th but for once a bank is being smart about the marketing and not waiting until the launch date to reveal all the details. From the April 8th press release we know the card will have no annual fee. It will earn 6 More Rewards points per dollar spent on the card at Save-On-Foods and other participating More Rewards partner locations, plus 4 More Rewards points on every dollar spent anywhere else with the card. We don't know what additional benefits the card will come with, I would assume Purchase Protection and Extended Warranty as those are pretty much standard on the majority of cards out there but with the strong earn being provided I don't see many insurance benefits being added as the bank and More Rewards are banking their money on the rewards side.

Now the earn listed above is strictly with spend on the card and does not include what you will earn when you swipe your More Rewards loyalty card along with it. So without the additional points earned from the More Rewards loyalty card what will the return be like for the points earned on the credit card only? Pretty darn good for a no fee card! We went onto the More Rewards website and tried out their travel bookings to see how many points would be required.

Here are WestJet flights between Calgary and Toronto

And a hotel in Banff:

Assuming you only use this new Visa card at only More Rewards partners, you'll earn all your points at the 6 points per dollar rate. If we look at the redemption amounts above you are effectively earning a 2.54% return on all your spending. That is huge compared to the competition! Most travel cards on the market that aren't tied into a frequent flyer or frequent guest program are between 1.5% and 2% with some pushing 2.33% on select redemptions and Scotia's Gold Amex earning 4% on select category purchases. Plus you have to remember this card has no annual fee!

More realistically however is the mix of spending on this card as when you shop at non More Rewards partners you'll earn 4 points per dollar. Still at 4 points per dollar you are getting a 1.695% return which places it in with the competition listed above. But when you look at its no-fee competitors that only offer 1.25% or less this card blows them out of the water! It looks like our 2017 Top Travel Rewards Credit Cards will have a new champion for the no-fee Travel Points credit card category! And we're not even including the extra points you can earn for swiping your More Rewards loyalty card at any of the program's partners.

The credit card itself will also act as your More Rewards Loyalty Card so you won't have to pull out two cards when shopping at More Rewards partners thus automating the double dip for you.

It has been sometime since there was this big of a game changer introduced into the Canadian credit card rewards market and more so for the no fee category as that hasn't been tampered with for years.

So hats off to Scotiabank and More Rewards for taking this step to make such a strong earning no-fee rewards card!

Here are the current More Rewards partners that would earn 6 points per dollar with this card:

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