🇨🇦 Top Canadian Travel Credit Cards


If you live in Canada and follow our content, you may have spent a lot of time wishing that you had access to all of the amazing credit cards and offers our friends south of the border have.

However, You'll be pleased to know that after the U.S., Canada has the strongest credit card and travel hacking programs in the world... some of which are even BETTER than in the U.S.

We have everything from transferrable points, cards with free lounge access, and even hotel cards with free night certificates. This guide will tell you about a handful of the many Canadian credit cards, banks, and points programs to get you started on your points and miles journey in the land of hockey and poutine.

Many of the offers below are actually higher than the public offers available, thanks to special offers with our links. If you use our link to apply, we'll also get a cut from the bank, which helps us bring more content like this to you.

It sounds like a win-win for everyone, eh?

Current Offer: Earn 90,000 95,000 Membership Rewards points after spending CA $7,500 in your first three months using our unique referral link.

Annual Fee: CA $699

Why it’s great: Much like the U.S. counterpart, the Canadian Platinum Card has a ton of perks (and even some credits) that offset the intimidating annual fee.

You'll get unlimited access to Centurion Lounges, Priority Pass Lounges, Plaza Premium Lounges, Escape Lounges, and even a few unique Canadian lounges by holding this card. Additionally, you'll get an annual $200 hotel credit to use in the Amex portal, along with regular Amex Offers for various businesses (which have historically included things like $250 toward United Airlines, $200 toward American Airlines, $200 Lululemon credit, and many, many more).

One of the best perks of this card is automatic hotel elite status with Marriott, Hilton, and Raddisson, which can get you some pretty valuable benefits on your travels.

You'll get amazing travel insurance, purchase protection, and some great earning rates on everyday purchases, as you'll see below. Oh, and in case you were wondering, it is made of sleek, heavy metal. 🤘🏼

Other Benefits:

  • Marriott Gold, Hilton Gold, and Raddisson Gold elite status
  • Earn 3x points on dining, groceries and food delivery
  • $200 annual hotel credit
  • Earn 3x points on travel booked through the Amex portal
  • Earn 2x points on all other travel
  • Strong travel insurance benefits

Current Offer: 55,000 80,000 Marriott Bonvoy points

Annual Fee: CA $120

Why it’s great: This is one of just two hotel credit cards in Canada (the other being the business version of this card). Despite that, this card is an incredibly powerful "keeper card" that will give you value year after year.

You'll receive an annual free night certificate worth 35,000 Marriott Bonvoy points, which alone will give you three times the value of the annual fee, maybe more. You'll also get 15 elite night credits every year, making elite status significantly easier to achieve.

Between being a Marriott Bonvoy member, your automatic Silver elite status, and the 5x points on Marriott Hotels, you'll earn at least 16x points when you stay with Marriott properties around the world... That's an incredible earning rate. If you want to rack up some more points, this card also earns 2x points on all other purchases.

Other Benefits:

  • Annual Free Night Certificate worth 35,000 points
  • Automatic Silver Elite status
  • 15 annual elite night credits
  • Earn 5x points at Marriott
  • Earn 2x points on all other purchases
  • Great travel insurance

Current Offer: Earn 30,000 Membership Rewards points (2,500 points for each month you spend CA $500 or more during your first year)

Annual Fee: CA $155.88 (CA $12.99 monthly fee)

Why it’s great: Despite what you may see on the surface, this card has higher earning rates on everyday spending categories than any other card in the U.S. or Canada. You'll earn 5x points on Dining, groceries, and food delivery and 2x on all travel purchases. Since you can transfer these points to Airlines like Air Canada Aeroplan, Etihad, Flying Blue, British Airways, and more, this card is the best way to rack up points every day without breaking the bank on an annual fee.

Other Benefits:

  • Earning multipliers work worldwide
  • Earn 3x points on streaming services
  • Purchase protection
  • Decent travel insurance benefits

Current Offer: 50,000 90,000 Marriott Bonvoy points

Annual Fee: CA $150

Why it’s great: Similarly to the personal Marriott card, this card will earn you an annual Free Night Certificate worth 35,000 Bonvoy points, which far outweighs the annual fee of just 150 Canadian dollars. If you combine the two cards together (like most Canadian travel hackers do), you'll get two valuable free nights every year.

Like the other Bonvoy card, this card will give you 15 annual elite night credits and automatic Silver elite status. Where it stands out, however, is in that it earns 3x points on gas, dining, and travel in addition to the 5x on Marriott hotels. Since we only have these two hotel cards in Canada, it's definitely worth picking them both up at some point to maximize your free night awards.

Other Benefits:

  • Annual Free Night Certificate worth 35,000 points
  • Automatic Silver Elite status
  • 15 annual elite night credits
  • Earn 5x points at Marriott
  • Earn 3x points on gas, dining, and travel
  • Great travel insurance

Current Offer: 90,000 120,000 Aeroplan points

Annual Fee: CA $599

Why it’s great: This is my single favorite credit card in Canada. It is a top-notch, premium credit card for the country's only major airline and points program.

Not only will you get a massive stash of Aeroplan points for signing up, you'll also get amazing benefits like free checked bags, priority check-in, priority security, priority boarding, and more with Air Canada.

The best part about this card, however, is unlimited access to Maple Leaf Lounges, which you can find in almost every Canadian airport (and even some in the U.S. and Europe). To make things even better, you'll get amazing travel protection and insurance, even on award flights when you use this card to pay the taxes and fees.

Finally, this is one of the only cards in Canada that will earn you more than 1 point per dollar spent on every purchase, even ones that don't fit into a category. Overall, this is a card that is ALWAYS in my wallet.

Other Benefits:

  • $100 Nexus credit
  • Earn 3x points on Air Canada purchases
  • Earn 2x points on dining and fod delivery
  • Earn 1.25x points on everything else
  • Unlimited Maple Leaf Lounge access
  • Air Canada benefits (free checked bags, priority check-in, security, and boarding)
  • Strong travel insurance benefits (even on award tickets)

Current Offer: 30,000 Scene+ points when you spend CA $3,000 in your first 3 months

Annual Fee: CA $150

Why it’s great: Unlike our U.S. counterparts, most Canadian cards DO have foreign transaction fees. This card, however, is one of the few that doesn't, making it a great card to take on the road.

Scene+ points are incredible, because you can use them to directly cover travel purchases at a rate of one cent per point (much like Capital One miles in the U.S.). This card will also give you 6 annual lounge visits at Priority Pass and Plaza Premium lounges both domestically and abroad, a perk that pays for the annual fee on its own.

While you can't transfer points, this card makes up for it in the flexibility to pay for travel with any merchant by simply erasing the purchase from your statement.

Other Benefits:

  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Cover travel purchases at a rate of one cent per point
  • six annual lounge visits
  • Earn 3x points on dining, groceries, and entertainment purchases

Current Offer: Earn up to 80,000 points* ($400 travel value) PLUS a full annual fee rebate for the primary cardholder for the first year* ($149 value) and receive a $100 annual travel enhancement credit*. Must apply by August 31, 2023. Conditions apply.

  • Welcome bonus of 20,000 points* ($100 travel value)
  • Earn 10,000 points* each month when you spend at least $1,000 each month for the first 6 months of account opening (up to $300 travel value)
  • First year annual fee rebate for the primary cardholder* ($149)
  • Receive a $100 annual travel enhancement credit*

Annual Fee: CA $149 (rebated in first year)

Why it’s great: "With the HSBC World Elite Mastercard you earn 6 points for $1 in Net Purchanses which are Travel Purchases, 4 Points for $1 in Net Purchases that are Gas, Grocery and Drugstore Purchases and 2 Points for $1 in Net Purchases, other than Travel, Gas, Grocery and Drugstore Purchases. Save on all your foreign currency purchases (even online) with no additional foreign currency conversion charges. Enjoy maximum flexibility and redeem your Points on your terms for: Travel Gift cards and valuable merchandise Financial rewards Rewards for miles *Terms and Conditions apply ®/TM Mastercard and World Elite are registered trademarks, and the circles design is a trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated. Used pursuant to license"

Other Benefits:

  • Earn 6x points on all travel purchases
  • Earn 4x points on gas, grocery and drugstore purchases
  • Annual DragonPass membership (visits still require a fee)
  • $100 annual Travel Enhancement credit
  • Annual Interest on Purchases: 20.99%
  • Annual Interest on Cash Advances and Balance Transfers: 22.99%

Current Offer: 55,000 Aeroplan points (10,000 when you make your first purchase, 30,000 points when you spend CA $5,000 in the first 6 months, 15,000 points when you spend CA $7,500 in your first year).

Annual Fee: CA $139 (waived in the first year)

Why it’s great: While this card isn't as powerful as our number three card, it does have a lower annual fee. You'll get free checked bags with Air Canada, but not many other benefits. Still, the signup bonus is solid if you can meet the spending requirement, especially considering the $0 annual fee in the first year.

Other Benefits:

  • $100 Nexus credit every 48 months
  • Free checked bag with Air Canada
  • Earn 1.5x points on gas, groceries, and Air Canada
  • Earn 1x point everywhere else

That wraps up our list of top Canadian credit cards. As you can see, the Canadian travel hacking game is incredibly strong, so hopefully you get on your way toward racking up points for free travel.

If you found this post useful, we’d be super grateful if you used our links to start your next credit card application!

Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.