Truly free travel.
No annual fee travel credit cards are a rare breed.
Travel credit cards often offer:
And annual fees often reflect that…because annual fees are one way credit card companies can justify giving you all those
So, finding a travel credit card that has valuable travel rewards, any type of insurance, and a few perks … all with
no annual fee? That’s kind of like looking for Bigfoot – sightings are pretty rare.
But no matter how rare, there are still a few Canadian no fee travel cards in the wild.
Let it be noted, however, that there are some
no fee cash back credit cards that are better than no fee travel credit cards, so we included them in our list.
They may not give you points or miles ... but the nice thing about cash is that it can be used for travel.
But first, here’s a simple fact: you’re not going to find a no fee travel card that spoils you as much as the
top premium cards do. So why anyone would want to give up those “lap of luxury” cards and go with a no fee travel
card? Here are 3 reasons why a no fee travel credit card can make sense:
With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at some of the best no fee travel credit cards on the market.
Not only is the
CIBC Aventura Visa Card the number one travel credit card on the list and with good reason. For a no fee credit
card it has quite a lot going for it.
One thing to note is that there is also an identical student version of this card, the
. So, whether you’re a student looking for a
starter credit card or you’re looking for the best no fee travel card on the market, these Aventura cards from CIBC
are both pretty solid choices.
Click “Learn More” to get the full details:
One interesting thing about the
MBNA Rewards Mastercard is that it gives you a 1% return on spending, whether you’re redeeming your points
for travel or cash.
Plus, this card allows you to use your rewards
whenever you want – there is no need to wait to redeem your points once a year, or for high minimum redemption
Another thing that really sets this card apart is the fact that there are 7 different types of purchase and travel insurance
included. In fact all the MBNA Platinum Plus Mastercards cover you with the same insurance package…
So, if you’re looking for a no fee card and insurance is important to you,
MBNA is definitely a good place to start.
Finally to top it off, this card will get you going fast with $50 worth of sign up bonus points – and it’s hard to say
no to free rewards.
Read our full review as well as user reviews here:
It's not strictly a travel credit card, but the Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card is a good one to consider if you’re
looking for a no fee option, especially if the majority of your spending is done in a few purchases categories – say
entertainment, restaurants, gas, or groceries.
This card allows you to choose up to 3 spending categories where you do most of your spending, and gives you 2% cash
back for every purchase you make at stores that fall into those categories. And, if your spending habits change, Tangerine
allows you to change your chosen spending categories at regular intervals. And although this card doesn’t give you points
or miles, it gives you cash that you can use for whatever travel you like!
The SimplyCash Card from American Express is another card that you may be surprised to see near the top of the no fee travel list (since it is a cash back card). Cash back cards don’t usually come close to travel cards in terms of value or perks, but the SimplyCash Card is definitely an exception to the rule. And since cash can be used for travel, we’ve included it here.
So, if the thought of a nice sign up bonus gets you excited ‒ then the potential to earn up to $75 in bonus rewards should put this card on your radar.
Aside from the rich sign up bonus, you get a straight 1.25% cash back on all your purchases (after the initial 2.5% for your first 3 months), plus extra rewards if you refer friends and they get approved.
Keep in mind you’ll actually earn $150 in total bonus cash in all your purchases within the first 3 months of card membership. The real bonus is $75 though after you subtract the $75 you’d be earning anyway at the regular 1.25% rate.
This card also includes 4 different types of insurance, great perks like American Express Invites and Front of the Line reservations, and even gives you an introductory balance transfer rate of 1.99% for the first 6 months. So if you have any pre existing credit card debt hanging over your head, the SimplyCash card could be a great way to pay off some debt first and start earning valuable rewards later.
As a recap, here’s a summary of the top 5 no fee travel credit cards in Canada. We included a stand-out feature of each card and the average return on spending you can expect to get (assuming a reasonably optimal redemption).