Travel is a very broad category that covers many subcategories such as airfare, hotels, car rentals, transit, and much more. The best travel credit card should not only offer you the highest return on your spend, but also benefits and perks that fit the way you travel.
Review our top Canada credit card picks for travel and calculate which cards earn you the most rewards based on the spend amounts you enter into our tool.
American Express Cobalt™ Card
- Earning Rate: Earn 5X Membership Rewards points on restaurant and grocery purchases in Canada, 3X on streaming subscriptions, 2X on gas and transit in Canada and on travel, and 1X on everything else.
- Main Highlights: High earning rates combined with the ability to transfer points to 8 partners including Air Canada, Delta Airlines, British Airways, and Marriott Bonvoy.
- Annual Fee: $12.99 per month ($155.88 annually)
- Summary: The Cobalt Card is one of the best travel credit cards (if not thee best) in Canada. It's fantastic for building up valuable rewards that can be transferred to a hefty list of partners.
The Platinum Card®
- Earning Rate: Earn 3X points on dining and food delivery purchases in Canada, 2X on travel, and 1X on everything else.
- Annual Credits: $200 CAD travel credit for American Express Travel Online or Platinum Card Services
- Main Highlights: $100 NEXUS application credit, global lounge access (Centurion lounges, Plaza Premium lounges, Delta Sky Club, Airspace lounges, Escape lounges, Priority Pass lounges, and Executive Lounges by Swissport), Fine Hotels + Resorts, complimentary elite status with Hilton, Marriott, and Radisson, special benefits at Toronto Pearson Int'l Airport, and top-notch travel insurance.
- Annual Fee: $699
- Summary: The Platinum Card has a high annual fee, but it's easily offset by the numerous amount of benefits it offers. Combine that with the fact that points earned with the card are extremely valuable and you have yourself one of the best travel credit cards in Canada.
- Earning Rate: Earn 5X points on the first $2,500 in monthly grocery and restaurant purchases (then 2X), 2X points on gas, electric vehicle charging, recurring bill payments, and À la carte Travel purchases, and 1X on all other purchases.
- Annual Credits: $150 in travel-fee refunds
- Main Highlights: National Bank VIP Lounge access (Montreal-Trudeau) and top-notch travel insurance.
- Intro Bonus: No current bonus.
- Annual Fee: $150.
- Summary: The NBC Mastercard offers a high return across several categories. You can redeem those points for 1 cent apiece towards travel booked through their portal. The card features great travel coverage including trip cancellation and trip interruption insurance.
- Earning Rate: Earn 2% Money-Back on up to two select categories of your choice and 0.5% on all other purchases. Choose a 3rd 2% Money-Back category if you deposit rewards into a Tangerine Savings account.
- Main Highlights: Airport lounge access, car rental collision/loss damage insurance, mobile device insurance, discounts, unlimited 2% Money-Back, and rewards paid out monthly.
- Intro Bonus: Get 10% back, up to $100, when you spend up to $1,000 in your first 2 months.
- Annual Fee: $0.
- Summary: If you prefer to earn cash back over points and miles, but still want access to great travel benefits, the Tangerine World Mastercard is a fantastic option. It earns an unlimited 2% Money-Back, offers a handful of travel benefits, and has no annual fee.
Scotiabank Gold American Express® Card
- Earning Rate: Earn 6X Scene+ points at participating grocers, 5X in Canada on dining, food delivery, entertainment, and other eligible grocery stores, 3X in Canada on gas, daily transit, and select streaming services, and 1X on everything else.
- Main Highlights: Airport Lounge access via Priority Pass, No Foreign Transaction Fees on international purchases, and top-notch travel insurance.
- Annual Fee: $120
- Summary: If you plan on traveling outside of Canada and you want to be able to earn rewards without being penalized, the Scotiabank Gold AMEX Card is the best option. You'll also be able to enjoy high earning rates spending in Canada and travel benefits.
- Earning Rate: Earn 2 points per $1 on the first $1,000 in grocery and restaurant purchases monthly (then 1.5X), 1.5X on gas, electric vehicle charging, À la carte Travel, and recurring bill payments, and 1X/$1.50 on all other purchases.
- Main Highlights: Travel insurance.
- Intro Bonus: No current bonus.
- Annual Fee: $0 the first year, then $89.
- Summary: This is one of the best low-annual fee credit cards for travel insurance. It offers out-of-province medical insurance, trip cancellation/interruption insurance, and other coverage you would normally only find on Mastercard World Elite, Visa Infinite, and high-end AMEX credit cards. It also has no minimum income requirement and earns a solid return on spending.
American Express® Green Card
- Earning Rate: Earn 1X Membership Rewards points on all purchases and an additional 1 point per $1 on hotels and car rentals through AMEX Travel Online.
- Main Highlights: Shopping coverage.
- Annual Fee: $0
- Summary: The AMEX Green only earns 1 point per $1 spent on all purchases, but don't let that fool you. These points can be redeemed for high value towards travel through AMEX Travel Online and be transferred to a handful of airline and hotel partners for a shot at even more value.
MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus® Mastercard®
- Earning Rate: Earn 2X MBNA Rewards points on restaurant, grocery, digital media, membership, and household utility purchases, on up to $10,000 in annual spend for each individual category. 1X on everything else.
- Main Highlights: Earn up a 10% birthday bonus, up to 10K points per year
- Annual Fee: $0
- Summary: This card earns a solid return across several popular everyday categories. The annual bonus points you'll receive pushes it slightly beyond other cards of it's class. You'll also be able to enjoy mobile device insurance and shopping coverage.
American Express® Aeroplan® Reserve Card
- Earning Rate: Earn 3X points on eligible Air Canada and Air Canada Vacations purchases, 2X on eligible dining and food delivery purchases in Canada, and 1.25X on everything else.
- Main Highlights: Annual worldwide companion pass, free checked bags (up to 8 people), airport lounge access, priority benefits, and ability to earn SQMs and SQSs towards elite status via spend.
- Annual Fee: $599
- Summary: The AMEX Aeroplan Reserve Card has a hefty annual fee, but offers a ton of benefits that can easily offset the price if you frequently fly Air Canada. If you can spend $25K on the card to earn the annual companion pass, you should be able to get exceptional value out of the card.
WestJet RBC World Elite Mastercard
- Earning Rate: Earn 2% back in WestJet dollars on WestJet flights or WestJet Vacations packages and 1.5% back on all other purchases.
- Main Highlights: Annual companion voucher and free checked bag (up to 8 people).
- Annual Fee: $119
- Summary: This best benefit of this card is the annual companion voucher which allows a person to travel with you on a round-trip flight for $119 CAD in Canada and the continental US and $399 CAD for the rest of the WestJet network. On top of that, the free checked bags will also add up if you and those traveling with you normally have to pay for them.
Marriott Bonvoy™ American Express® Card
- Earning Rate: Earn 5X points on eligible purchases at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy and 2X points on all other purchases.
- Main Highlights: Free annual night award worth 35K points, complimentary status, and 15 elite night credits towards achieving higher status.
- Annual Fee: $120
- Summary: The Marriott Bonvoy card is a great option if you stay at Marriott brand hotels. The card has lots of potential if you know how to get the most out of Marriott Bonvoy points. The free night award alone can make the card worth picking up since you can combine it with points in your account.
CIBC Aventura® Visa Infinite Privilege Card
- Earning Rate: Earn 3X points on travel purchases through the CIBC Rewards Centre, 2X on eligible dining, entertainment, transportation, gas and groceries, and 1.25X on everything else.
- Annual Credits: $200 Aventura Travel credit
- Main Highlights: Two $50 CAD NEXUS application rebates, Priority Pass membership with 6 free lounge visits per year, and the ability to redeem points for Business Class tickets via the Aventura Airline Rewards Chart.
- Annual Fee: $499
- Summary: If you're a heavy spender and can jump the income requirement hurdle, this card will offer everything you need and more when it comes to airfare.
Best Credit Cards For Travel Summary
|Credit Card||Annual Fee||Best For|
|American Express Cobalt™ Card||$12.99 per month||Flexible Travel Rewards|
|The Platinum Card®||$699||Luxury Travel & Global Lounge Access|
|National Bank World Elite® Mastercard®||$0 the first year, then $150||Travel Rewards (Mastercard)|
|Tangerine World Mastercard®||$0||No Annual Fee + Cash Back|
|Scotiabank Gold American Express® Card||$120||No Foreign Transaction Fee|
|National Bank Platinum Mastercard®||$0 the first year, then $89||Travel Insurance at Low Annual Fee|
|American Express® Green Card||$0||Flexible Travel Rewards At No Annual Fee|
|MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus® Mastercard®||$0||Travel Rewards At No Annual Fee (Mastercard)|
|American Express® Aeroplan® Reserve Card||$599||Air Canada Benefits|
|WestJet RBC World Elite Mastercard||$119||WestJet Benefits|
|Marriott Bonvoy™ American Express® Card||$120||Marriott Travelers|
|CIBC Aventura® Visa Infinite Privilege Card||$499||Visa Infinite Privilege Benefits|
Travel Credit Card Rewards Calculator
Input your monthly and yearly spend amounts to find out how which travel rewards credit cards will earn you the most rewards and best return on your spending.
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These estimates are to help guide you towards making the best decision when it comes to picking up a rewards credit card. They should be used for illustrative purposes only. You can click on the estimated earnings to see the calculations or click on the card to learn more.
Do note that all spend amounts entered into the tool above will carry over to every credit card rewards calculator on the site, so there's no need to re-enter spend if you choose to dive deeper into calculating rewards for credit cards on the site.