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“I beheld the wretch – the miserable monster whom I had created.”
– Mary Shelley, Frankenstein
Frankenstein is a classic tale of a young scientist who sets out to advance science.
Dr. Victor Frankenstein decides to put bits and pieces of people and animals together and try to make something astounding.
In his quest, however, he goes a little too far…
And creates a monster.
With Halloween upon us, we thought we would take a page from Victor’s book.
No…we’re not going to try to create an indestructible artificial man, but we did think it would be fun to make a creation of our own.
Credit card geniuses or mad scientists?
With Frankenstein in mind, we posed the following question to our team:
“If we were to make a Frankenstein creation, what credit card feature would you want it to have?”
What follows is their response – a twisted tale that is not for the faint of heart…
The only thing scary about this story is how badly you’re going to want this credit card creation for yourself.
What would our Frankenstein credit card look like?
While there were a few of our staff who were after perks and benefits, many of them went straight for the goods – the valuable rewards.
Let’s start with the rewards
“This was then the reward of my benevolence!”
When creating a dream credit card, rewards are the first thing that comes to mind.
We want to be rewarded for our spending, and sadly rewards on many Canadian credit cards are pretty underwhelming.
But there are a few Canadian credit card rewards programs that are worthy of our credit card experiment.
Rewards for those who love to travel
“The world was to me a secret which I desired to devine.”
It’s no secret that travel rewards are generally more valuable than cash back rewards.
So, of course, we would want some of these rewards included with our monster credit card.
Stephen, the creditcardGenius himself, put it this way:
My favourite feature of credit cards is high-value rewards. There’s nothing that gets me pumped more than boarding a flight that should have cost me $800+ and only paying $150 or less. If I can book any airline and any flight and still get a higher value, even better. That’s why I love my Amex Cobalt combined with the American Express Fixed Points Travel Program so much!
And Ruben, our critical thinker, had similar feelings:
Being on the opposite side of the country from my family, it should come as no surprise that I like high-value travel rewards. I always have use for saving money on flights.
Who doesn’t want free travel?
This card will allow you to earn:
- 5 points for every $1 spent at grocery stores, bars, and restaurants,
- 2 points for every $1 spent on gas, travel, and transit, and
- 1 point for every other $1 spent.
With the ability to get a 1.75 cent value when you redeem your points for travel through the American Express Fixed Points Program, you’re looking at up to 8.75% return on your purchases.
8.75% return! We definitely want that for our card!
Valuable travel rewards so we can finally make it to the country of eternal light, check.
Rewards for those who want glory, but will settle for cash back
“Wealth was an inferior object; but what glory would attend the discovery…”
However, on the other side of the fence, we have Maria and Danielle.
Both of them want cold, hard cash.
This is what Maria, the team’s straight shooter, had to say when we asked her what her favourite credit card feature is:
My favourite type of credit card is no fee cash back. Simple, straightforward, so I know exactly what I’m getting.
And Danielle, our resident millennial, was almost in agreement.
My favourite credit card feature is cash-back rewards. I don’t mind paying an annual fee if the annual rewards are greater than the fee. Anything that can help me save money!
One of the best parts of cash-back rewards is knowing exactly what you’re getting – you don’t need to worry about losing value when you go to redeem your rewards for cash.
This card is going to give you major cash back rewards:
- 4% cash back on gas and groceries – highest of any card.
- 2% cash back on drugstore purchases and recurring bills.
- 1% cash back on all other purchases.
Don’t worry if you can’t meet the 60K income requirement, the
But we want a card that will do both – cash back and travel rewards.
And while there are plenty of travel cards that allow you to redeem your rewards for cash, wouldn’t it be nice to get a travel card that doubles as a cash back card, with a straight 1:1 redemption value?
(R.I.P MBNA Rewards Mastercard.)
We think so too.
And that’s why our dream credit card would have the
…be still our credit card loving hearts!
A few of our favourite perks
Rewards aren’t the only thing credit cards have going for them, though.
It’s the extra stuff that can really make a credit card stand out.
And with our Frankensteinian creation, we’re pulling out all the stops.
Protection from travel woes
Jon, our avid traveller, is all about the “comps” when he hits the road:
I like when you get the free things while flying, such as companion vouchers and free checked bags. The National Bank World Elite Mastercard offers fee reimbursement for checked bags, seat selections, and airport parking. These are fees we can’t stand paying, but this card will give you $250 off these fees every year.
The travel benefits from the
- $100 in free checked bags,
- $100 for airport parking,
- $50 to go towards seat selections,
- top-of-the-line insurance, as well as
- complimentary lounge access (Montreal only).
…If only they would throw in some fun-sized Halloween candy while we were travelling on top of that!
Protection for your stuff
Sean, our tech lover, would love something for those “just in case” moments, though.
My favourite feature is the Mobile Device protection. It’s so common to damage your phone that this peace of mind is essential in my opinion.
Many of us do everything on our cellphone (which is a Frankenstein creation in itself).
It’s our computer, our camera, our calendar, our alarm clock, our bank, our office…and sometimes it’s even our phone.
It’s no surprise that people want their cellphones insured, although it is a surprise that so few credit cards come with this great feature.
And that’s exactly why we’re stealing that feature for our astonishing creation.
Protection from pesky fees
“Of my creation and creator I was absolutely ignorant, but I knew that I possessed no money,”
Great card or not, sometimes it’s the fees that can be a real drag.
According to Leanne, our self-proclaimed shop-a-holic, she’d add a 0% foreign currency exchange fee to the table:
No foreign exchange fees, please! Shopping online and across the border is frustrating enough when the exchange rate is so terrible. So, getting dinged that extra 2.5% hurts my heart. I would definitely want the no FX fee feature from Home Trust for my dream creation.
Using your card when you travel and getting some of your shopping done online are two things that can definitely make life easier.
It’s not fun when you get home from a trip, or you get your Christmas shopping bill, and you realize that you spent quite a bit more than you were planning because of the bank fees.
No foreign exchange fees, it is!
Along those same “no fee” lines, here’s what Kalleigh, our word tinkerer, has to say:
My favourite feature of existing credit cards will always be no-fee options. I don’t make a whole lot of purchases on them, so paying any sort of fee doesn’t make much sense for me. I know I sacrifice getting bigger rewards when I opt for no-fee cards, but I feel more comfortable with it.
One great example of a card with no fees and big rewards is the
This card gives you:
- 2 points for every $1 spent on gas, groceries, and restaurant purchases ($5,000 annual cap on each category), and
- 1 point for every other $1 spent.
When redeeming for travel, 1 point = 1 cent, which means you’ll be getting 2% back on gas, groceries, and restaurant purchases (which is pretty great for a no-fee card.)
All that to say…if our Frankenstein credit card could have no annual fee ever, that would be great!
What would your monster credit card look like?
There you have it – our terrifyingly enticing creation:
- valuable rewards that will allow you to redeem for travel or cash back at the same value,
- a fixed travel rewards program to help you stretch your points even further,
- free perks while travelling, including no foreign exchange fees,
- protection for your
- all for the low, low price of $0!
Your own Frankenstein creation
What type of credit card do you want in your wallet?
Leave your comments below!
“A new light seemed to dawn upon my mind, and bounding with joy, I communicated my discovery.”
– Mary Shelley, Frankenstein