credit-cards-walletLots of banks will offer users the “best credit card in Canada”. So much information can be a lot to handle when you’re shopping around for a new credit card.

Everyone offers rewards, benefits, quick approval, low rates, no annual fees – or a combination of everything you look for in a card. With all the choices out there, what kind of credit card should you choose?

How to find the best credit cards to use in Canada?

First of all, you should decide what benefits are most important for you and your unique situation. Are you already a seasoned traveller, or someone who now has time to travel for leisure? Then you might need a card with competitive travel rewards.

If you’re a shopaholic, credit cards with great rewards might be right for you. If you’re an average householder who uses your card for everyday retail purchases, you might prefer a credit card with store cashback benefits.

Your best bet is to figure out what your particular needs and requirements are as a traveller or a parent, etc., and look at our options below.

What do I need to apply for a credit card in Canada?

Banks will look first at one very important factor when you apply for a credit card: your credit score. Do you have a bill in collection, or carry a balance on an existing credit card? Then you probably won’t be approved for a top tier credit card like Scotiabank AmEx Gold.

You can still apply for a perfectly good card though. It’s recommended to go with a brand of credit card you already have a relationship with. If you have a Scotiabank credit card, you can apply for a better card from Scotiabank. If you have credit card debt, you have the option to pick one of the “Top Credit Cards If You Carry a Balance”.

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Some top-tier credit cards charge annual fees, such as the Scotiabank Gold AmEx, which charges $99 a year for their card. But remember that with top-tier cards, you can also get top tier rewards and benefits.

If you decide to apply for one of the “Top No Annual Fee Credit Cards”, you can miss out on the rewards and benefits of a top-tier credit card. Rewards and cashback options can potentially be higher than you would spend on an annual credit card fee. Apply for a No Annual Fee card if you have done your homework and decided it’s worth it for you.

For travel rewards, you can go with the “Fixed Points Rewards Credit Cards”. If you’re not a seasoned traveller, you won’t have concern yourself with how to book different types of traveller miles. This type of card offers a fixed system linked to the amount of travelling you do.

If you’re more experienced, the “Travel Points Credit Cards” are a great option. Seasoned travellers usually know exactly when and where they’re going to be flying, and can use the rewards linked to these cards to their advantage.

Here are the best types of credit cards to use in Canada. They all have different benefits to suit every type of credit card user.

  1. Top Tier Credit Cards

Scotiabank® Gold American Express®

  • 4% cashback at grocery stores, gas stations and restaurants
  • 1% cashback everywhere else
  • 15,000 bonus points ($150) with your first $1000 in everyday purchases in first 3 months
  • $99 annual fee

Scotia Momentum® Visa Infinite

MBNA World Elite

BMO World Elite

  1. Top Cash Back Credit Cards

The SimplyCash™ Preferred card from American Express

Scotia Momentum® Visa Infinite

Chase Visa

MBNA Smart Cash

  1. Top Fixed Points Rewards Credit Cards

Scotiabank® Gold American Express®

  • 4% back on gas, grocery stores, restaurant and entertainment
  • 15,000 bonus points ($150) with your first $1000 in everyday purchases in the first 3 months
  • $99 annual fee

MBNA World Elite

BMO World Elite

TD First Class Visa Infinite

  1. Top Travel Points Credit Cards

RBC Avion

American Express SPG

The American Express® Gold Rewards Card

MBNA Alaska Airlines

  1. Top No Annual Fee Credit Cards

MBNA Smart Cash

  • 2% cash back at grocery stores and gas stations
  • 1% cash back everywhere else

The SimplyCash™ Card from American Express

Blue Sky® Credit Card from American Express


Chase Visa

  1. Top Credit Cards If You Carry a Balance

MBNA Platinum Plus

  • 0% promotional rate for 12 months

Scotiabank Value® Visa

No-Fee Scotiabank Value® Visa

MBNA Smart Cash

MBNA True Line

TD Emerald Visa