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For the AIR MILES collector that likes no annual fee credit cards, the offers a high AIR MILES earn rate at participating retailers, and a standard earn rate everywhere else.

But if you’re interested in this card or already have it in your wallet, some changes are in store later this year that you’ll want to pay attention to.

Info on BMO AIR MILES Mastercard changes

Earn rates are changing for all no annual fee BMO AIR MILES Mastercards

All BMO no fee AIR MILES Mastercards are getting new earn rates starting in November 2020.

There are a few different branded versions of this card, but they all have the same earn rates and benefits:

Current BMO AIR MILES Mastercard earn rates

Currently, here’s what these credit cards earn on purchases:

  • 2 miles for every $20 spent at participating AIR MILES partners, and
  • 1 mile for every $20 spent on all other purchases.

What are these participating AIR MILES partners? Though not all partners are included, most of the big ones are, including:

  • Sobeys,
  • Safeway,
  • Shell,
  • Irving,
  • Rona,
  • Lowe’s
  • Kent, and
  • Staples.

You can view the full list by region here.

New BMO AIR MILES Mastercard earn rates

So what new earn rates are coming for these cards? You’ll see an increase in shopping at participating partners, but a decrease on all other purchases.

  • 3 miles for every $25 spent at participating AIR MILES partners, and
  • 1 mile for every $25 spent everywhere else.

These are a little difficult to compare, so let’s go over the new and old rates of return for both Dream Miles and Cash Miles.

Starting with Dream Miles, here’s the return for each earn rate when redeemed for flights at a mile value of 17.2 cents.

Old Earn Rates New Earn Rates
Bonus Earnings At AIR MILES Partners 1.72% 2.06%
Earn Rate Everywhere Else 0.86% 0.69%

What if you collect Cash Miles? Here’s your new earn rates based on a mile value of 10.5 cents.

Old Earn Rates New Earn Rates
Bonus Earnings At AIR MILES Partners 1.05% 1.26%
Earn Rate Everywhere Else 0.53% 0.42%

While there’s a little loss on the earn rate for most places, you’re gaining much more when shopping at participating AIR MILES sponsors.

So is this change for the better or not? It all depends on how you use the credit card. If most of your shopping is done at participating retailers, you’ll be earning much more rewards now. If not, you may be earning fewer AIR MILES on your purchases.

Related: Best AIR MILES Credit Cards In Canada

This card will make a perfect addition to our favourite no fee credit card combo

Our current favourite no fee credit card combo is the and the .

With these upcoming changes, one of the BMO AIR MILES Mastercards will make a great addition to this combo, making for a no fee trio.

Use this card at all participating AIR MILES partners for a return of up to 2.06%, your choice of 2 (or 3) categories earning 2% cash back out of a list of 10 with the , and a return of 1.25% everywhere else courtesy of the .

A great tool for maximizing Air Miles promotions

There’s one more thing that also makes having the a great addition to your wallet – major AIR MILES promotions like Mega Miles and Shop The Block.

These bigger promotions require completing anywhere from 3 to 7 offers from various AIR MILES partners to earn a big lump sum bonus. BMO almost always participates in these promotions, where you need to spend an X amount of dollars at participating AIR MILES partners to earn more bonus miles.

And since you’re shopping at these partners during these promotions anyway, having a BMO AIR MILES Mastercard lets you complete one offer while you’re working on others at the same time. Having one of these cards, and paying close attention to AIR MILES promotions will really let you rake in the AIR MILES.

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In summary

Overall, the increased earn rate at AIR MILES partners will more than offset the lower earn rate everywhere else.

Do you have this credit card already?

What are your thoughts on these upcoming changes?

Let us know in the comments below.