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We’re living in uncertain times. Sports leagues have been shut down, large gatherings aren’t allowed, and the government is asking people not to travel abroad to help stem the amount of people becoming infected by coronavirus.

So, to help save some money, here are some top credit card combos to look at when stocking up on supplies. All of them will give some extra rewards in your wallet, and take away at least a little stress on your finances. Each combo only contains one card with an annual fee.

Pairs For… Best No Fee Credit Card Pair Reasons Why
Saving on groceries Scotiabank Momentum Visa Infinite and BMO CashBack Mastercard 4% cash back on groceries plus 3% cash back at Walmart Supercentres
Saving at Costco BMO CashBack World Elite Mastercard and Tangerine Mastercard 2% on up to 3 categories of your choice plus 1.5% at Costco and all other purchases
Maximizing your cash back anywhere Amex SimplyCash Preferred and Home Trust Preferred Visa 2% cash back on all purchases and 1% back on all stores that don’t accept Amex
Saving on annual fee Tangerine Mastercard and Amex SimplyCash 2% cash back on up to 3 categories of your choice plus 1.25% on all other purchases
Saving your travel rewards Amex Cobalt and MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Up to 8.75% travel rewards and 2% rewards where Amex isn’t accepted ‒ when this coronavirus wave is over and we can travel again

Credit card pair for saving on groceries

Traditional grocery stores (think Loblaws and Sobeys) are the main target for many looking to get not only groceries but other household items as well.

Thankfully, there are plenty of cash back credit cards that offer bonus rewards on grocery store purchases. And if this is something you want, here are 2 top cards to consider pairing.

Scotiabank Momentum Visa Infinite Card and BMO CashBack Mastercard

Why are these cards the perfect pair exactly?

With the , you not only have our top overall cash back credit card in Canada, but our top cash back grocery credit card as well.

You’ll get:

  • 4% cash back on both groceries and recurring bills,
  • 2% cash back on gas and transit purchases, and
  • 1% cash back on all other purchases.

That being said, if you like Walmart Supercentres, Visa doesn’t classify them as grocery stores (neither does Amex). However, Mastercards do.

And to complete this package, we’ll recommend the as its companion.

With this card, you’ll earn:

  • 5% cash back for the first 3 months (up to $2,500 in spend),
  • 3% cash back at grocery stores (up to $500 spent per month),
  • 1% cash back on recurring bills (up to $500 spent per month), and
  • 0.5% cash back on all other purchases.

And since it’s a Mastercard, you can also earn some rewards if you shop at Costco.

Credit card pair for saving at Costco

Costco is a top shop for everything you need, plus you can get everything in bulk at rock bottom prices.

However, Costco is defined as a general merchant by Mastercard, so you need a Mastercard that simply offers a high base earn rate on everything. Your “grocery” bonus categories won’t count at Costco.

BMO CashBack World Elite Mastercard and Tangerine Money-Back Mastercard

What makes these cards good together? You get a high base earn rate at Costco (and other stores) and can get some extra cash back on categories of your choice.

The offers:

  • 1.5% cash back on all purchases,
  • 10% cashback for the first 3 months, and
  • premium perks, including 13 out of types of insurance.

And to get a boost in cash back, you can pair it with the , which offers:

  • 2% cash back on up to 3 categories of your choice, and
  • 0.5% cash back on other purchases.

This combo means you can earn an extra 0.5% cash back on your selected categories, and 1.5% cash back everywhere else.

For a few more perks, you could also look at the , which has the same rewards, no annual fee, and also includes mobile device and car rental insurance.

Credit card pair for maximizing your cash back anywhere

Just want to get the most cash back possible, while also not having to worry about categories?

We have just the pairing for you.

American Express SimplyCash Preferred Card and Home Trust Preferred Visa

Our #1 rated cash back card, the works here as well. But since we’ve already talked about it, let’s focus on our #2 rated card for this combo – the .

With this card, you’ll earn a flat 2% cash back on every purchase, no categories to worry about. And for the first 6 months, you’ll earn 5% cash back, up to $6,000 in spend.

If Amex acceptance concerns you, pair it with a card like the . With this card, you’ll earn 1% cash back on eligible purchases (this excludes purchases made in a foreign currency), and pay no foreign transaction fees, on top of no annual fee.

Credit card pair for saving on annual fees

Prefer not to pay an annual fee? There are a couple of reasons when annual fees don’t make sense, like if:

  • you don’t spend much on credit cards, or
  • you simply prefer not to pay annual fees.

So here’s our top pair that doesn’t require you to pay any annual fees, and will still earn you some solid rewards.

Tangerine Money-Back Mastercard and American Express SimplyCash

What makes these cards fit together so well? Let’s start with the .

You’ll earn 2% on up to 3 categories of your choice while earning 0.5% on every other purchase.

However, you can upgrade that base 0.5% earn rate with the , which offers 1.25% cash back on every purchase. You’ll earn double that for the first 3 months, on up to $6,000 in spend.

And if there are places that don’t accept Amex, you’ll still be earning at least 0.5%.

Credit card pair for maximizing your travel rewards

Let’s be honest, while not great, this pandemic will pass, and at some point the current travel restrictions will end. When? We don’t really know, but it won’t last forever.

So wouldn’t it be nice to have something to look forward to? Here’s a top travel rewards pairing, so you can start saving up travel points for your next trip.

American Express Cobalt and MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus Mastercard

Talking about travel rewards means we need to include not just our #1 rated travel card, but our best credit card as well – the .

You’ll not only earn plenty of points but can get great value for them as well.

Here’s how you earn points:

  • 5 points per $1 on groceries, restaurants, and food delivery,
  • 2 points per $1 on gas, transit, and travel, and
  • 1 point per $1 on all other purchases.

And in your first year, you can also earn plenty of bonus points. Every month you spend $500 in the first 12 months, you’ll earn 2,500 bonus points. That’s an additional 30,000 points you can earn.

So what can you do with them? You’re collecting Amex Membership Rewards, some of the most flexible travel rewards out there.

Here are your options for redeeming your points for travel, and how much a point can be worth:

Or, if you’re looking forward to seeing your favourite team play once the sports leagues are back up and running, you can use your points towards Ticketmaster purchases, where each point is worth 1 cent.

Just note that although you can usually transfer Membership Rewards points to 6 airline partners, points collected with this card don’t have access to this option (if this interests you, look at the or instead).

And for Costco or Loblaws banner store shoppers, pair it with the .

Earning flexible MBNA Rewards points, on your daily purchases you’ll earn:

  • 2 points per $1 on gas, groceries and restaurants (up to $5,000 spent annually in each category), and
  • 1 point per $1 on all other purchases.

In the first 3 months, you’ll earn double points on your category spend. And it comes with an additional bonus of up to 10,000 points.

When redeemed for travel rewards through MBNA they’re worth 1 cent each, giving you a return of between 1% – 2% on all your spending.

It’s a great pairing that will give you flexible rewards you can use with any travel provider, and can be used at any store as well.

Your turn

Many of the combos will give you major rewards on your daily purchases, but these aren’t the only ones out there.

What card combinations do you carry in your wallet?

Let us know in the comments below, and share them with everybody.