Best Cash-Back Credit Card Canada

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As the term suggests, cashback credit cards refund small percentages of our purchases. Whether in the form of a credit on our statements or as cash in our bank accounts, they do their job well, that is, to give ‘cashback.’ Cashback cards can be costly, earning you hundreds in cash back per year, but you have to choose one that matches your purchasing habits.

Canada’s cash back credit cards available today allow a certain percentage of earnings to return from various types of everyday purchases. That’s why it is crucial that you’ll have the right card and should match your spending profile. We’ve made a list of Canada’s best cashback credit cards for 2022.

What are Cashback Credit Cards?

Cashback, points, or miles are the three forms of rewards in credit cards. A cash-back credit card helps you earn cashback rewards through the purchases you make on your card. Based on the various cash back credit cards you use, earn flat cashback rates on every purchase you make or even higher cashback rates in particular categories.

These cashback rewards you accumulate from different credit cards do not become instant cash. Generally, both miles and points types of credit cards allow cardholders to convert their rewards into cash.

Why Choose a Cashback Card?

Various rewards programs from credit cards usually value points or miles earnings differently. Furthermore, how points and miles are valued can differ depending on the redemption method. Most points and miles rewards are usually redeemed for cash, worth a penny each.

When you finally build up enough credit card rewards, you can start redeeming your rewards. Cashback credit card rewards mainly permit the redemption of your rewards at least in either one of three ways – statement credit, direct deposit to your bank account, or checks.

Best Cashback Cards in Canada

Knowing the best cashback credit card can be a debate of the century. It can be based on one’s specific spending categories. For those who only started with cashback rewards, flat-rate cards offer great ways to help you get started—no need to remember the activation of rotating categories or keep track of each category’s spending limits.

Once you get the hang of it and finally feel comfortable using cashback credit cards, you may need to take one closer look and move forward to your regular spending. Then, look for a credit card that offers and provides the highest total cashback for all of your eligible everyday purchases.

Now, here are some recommended cards based on specific categories you might find helpful as you make that critical decision of what cashback credit card you need:

Best No-Fee Cashback Cards   

BMO CashBack® MasterCard®

Card Details and Featured Benefits

  • Ideal for spending on groceries
  • No annual fee
  • Cashback: 3% on grocery purchases, 1% on bills, and 0.5% on others
  • Purchase Interest: 19.99%
  • Cash Advance: 22.99%
  • Balance Transfer: 22.99%

Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card

Card Details and Featured Benefits

  • Ideal for flexible spending
  • $0 Annual Fee
  • 2% up to three (3) categories of your choice
  • As a welcome offer, get 10% off everyday purchases up to $100
  • Purchase Interest: 19.95%
  • Cash Advance: 19.95%
  • Balance Transfer: 19.95%

Brim Mastercard

Card Details and Featured Benefits

  • Ideal for everyday spending
  • Has no annual fee
  • 1% on all your eligible everyday purchases
  • 3% on eligible airlines
  • 4% on select retailers
  • Purchase Interest: 19.99%
  • Cash Advance: 21.50%
  • Balance Transfer: 19.99%

Triangle™ Mastercard®

Card Details and Featured Benefits

  • Ideal for Canadian Tire
  • $0 Annual Fee
  • 4% on Canadian Tire Spending
  • 1.5% on eligible purchases of groceries
  • 0.5% on everything else
  • Purchase Interest: 19.99%
  • Cash Advance: 22.99%
  • Balance Transfer: 22.99%

Best Cashback Card for Groceries & Gas

CIBC Dividend® Visa Infinite* Card

Card Details and Featured Benefits

  • Earn as much as $271 annually
  • Based on $1,550 monthly spending
  • $120 Annual Fee
  • 4% on eligible gas, grocery purchases
  • 2% on bills, restaurants (including fast food & drinks), Daily transit
  • 1% on cashback on all other purchases.
  • Cashback On-Demand – redeem cashback at any time when you have a minimum of $25 through CIBC Online and Mobile Banking®
  • Purchase Interest: 20.99%
  • Cash Advance: 22.99%
  • Balance Transfer: 22.99%

Best Cashback Card for Paying Bills

Scotia Momentum® Visa Infinite* Card

Card Details and Featured Benefits

  • Earn $246 per year
  • Based on spending $1,550 monthly
  • $120 annual fee
  • 4% on bills and grocery purchases
  • 2% on gas, public transit, taxis, and rideshares
  • 1% on other purchases
  • Rewards Redemption: credit to statement balance annually in November
  • Annual fee of $120 – 1st year waived
  • Purchase Interest: 20.99%
  • Cash Advance: 22.99%
  • Balance Transfer: 22.99%

Best Cashback Card for Bonus Categories

Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card

Card Details and Featured Benefits

  • Earn $217 every year
  • Based on monthly spending of $1,550
  • $0 annual fee
  • 2% on up to three (3) categories of your choice
  • 10% on everyday purchases up to $100 as a welcome offer
  • Rewards Redemption: credit to statement balance, or savings account, monthly
  • Purchase Interest: 19.95%
  • Cash Advance: 19.95%
  • Balance Transfer: 19.95%

 Best Cashback Card with No Fee for Groceries

BMO CashBack® MasterCard®

Card Details and Featured Benefits

  • Earn $177 yearly
  • Based on spending $1,550 per month
  • $0 annual fee
  • 3% on groceries
  • 1% on bills
  • 0.5% on other purchases
  • Rewards Redemption: credit to statement balance whenever $1 min. cashback is accumulated
  • Purchase Interest: 19.99%
  • Cash Advance: 22.99%
  • Balance Transfer: 22.99%

Best Cashback Card with No FX Fees

Home Trust Preferred Visa

Card Details and Featured Benefits

  • Earn $186 after one (1) year
  • Based on spending per month of $1,550
  • $0 annual fee
  • 1% on other purchases
  • Rewards Redemption: credit to statement balance annually in January
  • Purchase Interest: 19.99%
  • Cash Advance: 19.99%
  • Balance Transfer: N/A

Best Cash Back Card for Roadside Assistance

TD Cash Back Visa Infinite* Card

Card Details and Featured Benefits

  • Earn $214 annually
  • Based on spending $1,550 every month
  • $120 annual fee
  • 10% on all purchases for the first three (3) months
  • 3% on Recurring bill payments†, gas, groceries
  • 1% on other purchases
  • Rewards Redemption: credit to statement balance whenever $25 min. cashback is accumulated
  • The annual fee of $120 for the 1st year is waived
  • Purchase Interest: 20.99%
  • Cash Advance: 22.99%
  • Balance Transfer: 22.99%

Honourable Mention

Rogers World Elite Mastercard

Card Details and Featured Benefits

  • No annual fee
  • 3% cashback on USD purchases, with 0.5% after forex fees
  • 1.5% cashback on all your other everyday purchases
  • The income requirement must be $80,000
  • Minimum spend requirement: You must be charged at least $15,000 on the card as maintenance of your eligibility

Best Overall Cash-back Credit Card in Canada

Neo Financial Mastercard Plus

Card Details and Featured Benefits

  • Let’s you earn a total of $132 per year
  • Based on spending $1,550 every month
  • $36 annual fee
  • HIGH Redemption flexibility
  • Rewards Redemption: redeem against any purchase on your card.
  • Purchase Interest: 24.99%
  • Cash Advance: 26.99%
  • Balance Transfer: N/A
Neo Financial: What It Is and How Different It Is

Neo is a fin-tech company in Canada that reimagines how people spend, save, and earn their rewards. They are the helping hand you need in making the most out of your precious time and valuable finances by building your financial stability from the ground up with the help of today’s latest technologies. Read our Neo Financial credit card review here.

You can open an account within minutes, earn instant cashback at your favourite stores, and get real-time notifications when you spend and save without monthly or annual fees.

Three (3) Easy Ways to Earn Rewards

Through the Neo Financial Mastercard Plus, you are given flexibility in earning rewards using three (3) easy ways:

  • First, 5% cash back at partners– allows you to make a 5% average unlimited cashback from the thousands of local and national Neo partners.
  • 15% substantial welcome bonuses – earn enormous rewards such as a whopping 15% cashback on all your first purchases from most partners of Neo.
  • 1% minimum cashback guarantee – lets you earn at least 1% back from all your purchases. If your overall cashback falls below 1%, Neo goes the extra mile and tops you up –  a win-win situation indeed!
Additional Card Details
  • Earn a 5%+ average cashback from thousands of Neo partners, and at least 1% cashback guaranteed.
  • No annual fees, no over-limit fees whatsoever – plus unlimited transactions!
  • Sign up as fast as three (3) minutes. Then, if approved, use your Neo credit card using Apple Play or Google Play.
  • Upgrade your spending categories with a monthly plan of either a Plus or Max plan and enjoy earnings of up to 50% more from NEO merchant partners. Never be locked into an annual fee and even switch plans anytime you want.
  • Visit the rewards offered near you. Then, simply download the Neo app, sign up, get started, and cash out all your rewards 24/7 – with no minimum thresholds.

Cashback Card FAQs

Now that we’re somehow acquainted with the different cashback credit cards available in the Canadian market scene today, you probably still have some questions here and there about cashback and how a cashback credit card truly works. Well, worry no more. We’ve also come up with some common FAQs or Frequently Asked Questions by people like you. We hope this list will help you further decide about cashback credit cards.

“What are the types of cashback credit cards?”

Although similar to one another, every cashback credit card, in some sense, still have differences. Not all of them offer rewards on the same terms. Here are the three (3) common types of cashback credit cards:

  • “Bonus Category” – are the most popular cashback cards available today. These cards pay out more rewards on particular purchase types, known popularly as bonus categories, than what they provide on everything else. Typically, these bonus categories include groceries, gas, and recurring bill payments – although it can vary depending on every card. Strategically speaking, by picking cards with bonus categories that align with your most frequent purchases, you can earn significantly a considerable number of rewards, more than what you usually get before this category. For example, your Neo Financial Mastercard Plus offers 5% on groceries and recurring bills, 3% on gas and daily transit, and 1% on everything else.
  • “Flat-Rate” – are cards that will earn the same amount of cashback for you no matter what you purchase. These cashback cards are fit and perfect for the typical, everyday shopper who prefers simplicity over complexity and whose spending categories don’t skew towards the common bonus categories such as groceries or gas. For example, your Neo Financial Mastercard Plus offers 3% on all your purchases.
  • “Flexible Bonus Category” – are cards quite similar to cards in the bonus category but come with a twist – you are not locked into such pre-set categories by the issuer company of your card, giving you the freedom to choose on your own. With this remarkable ability, you can select the bonus categories you want; you can customize your card to become more closely aligned with your particular spending habits and patterns, earning you more cashback.

The Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card and the Tangerine World Mastercard are the only personal cards to offer this kind of flexibility.

However, a popular tactic is being used by some strategic shoppers to somehow compensate for this strategy. They carry a combination of card types to earn them more rewards, involving either pairing two (2) cashback credit cards that offer different categories for bonuses or only using one particular card with bonus categories and another one with flat-rate rewards. Combining the right two (2) cashback credit cards can earn you a much higher overall rate of return than you would typically earn by only using one cashback credit card.

“Are there annual fees?”

A handful of great cashback cards offer the same perks and benefits without the hassle of the annual fee. These cash back credit cards are the Home Trust Preferred Visa and the SimplyCash Card from American Express. But those cashback cards that have yearly fees can still be worth the cost since they offer a much more lucrative cash-back rewards program with more perks and benefits.

If you use credit cards to pay most of your everyday purchases, you’ll walk away with far more valuable earnings with cashback cards that have annual fees, even after paying such fees. But if you’re not much of a credit user that much or you only have monthly spending of below $500, a cashback credit card with no annual fee could be a better choice.

On average, annual fees on cashback credit cards are usually around $99 to $120.

“Are there cashback welcome offers when getting these cards?”

New customers of cashback credit cards usually get a good chance for some kind of promotional offer.

Welcome offers on cashback credit cards don’t only offer a mere one-time surge in your rewards. Instead, it lets you earn much more with accelerated cashback rates for a given, limited period or up to a specific spending amount only. So, for example, although the BMO CashBack Mastercard allows you to earn at least 1% cashback on all your transactions, with a welcome offer, you’ll instead receive 5% cashback on all your spending for the first three months with a maximum of $100.

When comparing cashback welcome offers, it’s essential to check the accelerated cashback percentage and look deeper into the card’s terms and conditions to see the offer’s duration and what it maxes out at. At times, part of the offer of some cards with an annual fee is often to waive it for your first year.

One of the favourite things people love about cashback welcome offers is that they’re easy to take advantage of. Earn more cash with every dollar on all purchases part of your everyday spending. On the contrary, sign-up bonuses on most travel credit cards have minimum spending requirements: spending $3,000 within your first three months, for example. So you might not be qualified for the particular offer if your spending on the card is not enough and fast enough.

One final tip: Although bonuses may be appealing, they shouldn’t be the main and only reason for you to choose a cash-back credit card. Always do the math in finding out which card will work best for you, depending on your spending habits and patterns, all in the long haul.

“What’s better – cashback or points?”

Quite honestly, the reality is that there’s no clear-cut answer to this question.

One of the most significant advantages of cashback is the rewards’ simplicity, flexibility, and consistency. For example, the value of 1% in cashback will always be equivalent to $0.01 – no matter what happens. In addition, cashback rewards will help you save from all your everyday purchases charged to your card – not only on travel or merchandise but also on gift cards from specific retailers. Finally, rewards redemptions are very easy and often get automatically applied to your card’s statement balance.

On the other hand – points are less straightforward yet can potentially be more lucrative, especially if you’re a jet setter and loves to travel.

Compared to cashback, the value of points isn’t as consistent as with cashback and may vary based on specific loyalty programs and the type of redemption you want to do. For example, 1 Scotia Rewards point is worth $0.01 when redeemed for travel rewards like flights, but that same point will be worth around 45% less when redeemed for a gift card and around 50% less for cash credits. With other points programs such as Air Miles and Aeroplan, the value of your points will even differ when you want to redeem for travel depending on factors like the desired destination or whether it’s the low or high seasons during your scheduled trip.

The primary benefit of a travel card is that they usually come with more bonus categories and perks and more extensive welcome offers. In addition, depending on which travel card, redeem strategically, and get amazing above the standard $0.01 per point that stretches your rewards value even further.

The bottom line is that travel card points potentially offer more excellent value when redeemed for travel rewards such as flights, hotel stays, concierge service and travel insurance. However, when you want simple rewards, don’t travel frequently. Cashback cards are better if you want flexibility in using your credit card rewards to save on all your eligible everyday spending.

“How about interest rates?”

All rewards credit cards have double-digit annual interest rates – usually around 19.99%, like cashback cards. You can avoid these interest charges entirely as long as you always pay off your balance in full monthly. Otherwise, interest will rack up and eventually outweigh any cashback rewards you earn. Anticipation regularly carries a monthly balance, so consider a low-interest credit card over a cashback rewards card. This decision could help your bottom line in a big way.

“How does a cash-back credit card work?”
Cashback credit cards reward you with a refunded percentage of your total purchases, all made using the card. Use this refund as a form of credit towards your monthly balance or a cash deposit in your bank account. Some cards offer flat percentages on all purchases, while cashback credit cards offer higher rates on select categories.

“Are cashback credit cards worth it?”

Cashback credit cards, especially the higher percentage ones, can let you earn a significant summation of rewards over time, mainly whenever you use your card regularly to pay for specific items or recurring bills. It’s important to always pay off your account in full monthly. However, growing debt can quickly overtake any benefits the card offers.

“Is cashback taxable?”

In most instances, cash back from credit cards is not taxable. For example, the cashback earned from personal credit card usage cannot be subjected to paying or being charged income tax in Canada as the CRA views it as a discount and not income. For business cards, on the other hand, cashback rewards earned may still be subject to taxation.

Final Thoughts

The cashback credit card you have should allow you receive “cash” back into your account, with perks parallel to your spending. It is always best to do additional research before deciding what type of cashback credit card works best for your spending categories and habits and the paying capacity you have. We hope that this article helped make you have that vital decision.


Best Cashback Credit Card Canada

This year, the Mandarin Money-Back credit card had to be our choice, and it won out by a slim margin. We made the most of it: Since its launch in 2016, there has been much talk about including it in our list of the best cashback credit cards in Canada, but this year we had a slightly different view, so why not?

The Cash Rewards credit card is a good choice for consumers looking for a credit card with an annual fee and a generous welcome bonus. The high flat cash-back rate combined with a fantastic welcome offer makes it the best cashback card in Canada. Cash credit cards are also ideal for those who want a high-back, low fee for their money back. If you prefer a cash-back card with an easy-to-use interface and low fees, the Citi (r) double debit card is hard to beat.

Credit cards are a great option if you want to earn money back on your spending. The great thing about high cash payments – the repayment for everyday expenses can be coupled with a credit card that offers it again in a particular category – is that Canada has many different categories of cashback cards. You will find that some will give you extra cash for specific categories, and in particular, you will find the Citi Cash Rewards credit card with the highest cashback rate in the country.

The card has an annual fee but offers the highest cashback rate of any credit card in the country and the lowest monthly fee. So if you look at the list above, the American Express SimplyCash Preferred Card will offer you the most benefits of any credit card without getting upset. This includes a cash withdrawal of up to 10% on your monthly payments and a 2.5% bonus on purchases over $500.

If your income is low, the Tangerine Money-Back credit card offers the highest cashback rate of any credit card in the country and the lowest monthly fee. However, if you’re looking for a great cashback credit card, you also need to know the $1,000 annual fee on American Express’ SimplyCash Preferred Card.

Many of the best cash credit cards come with annual fees, so compare the rewards rate and annual fee. Earning rates and bonus features are lower than the yearly fee of other cards, but the fee comes with a higher monthly fee of $1,000 per year. There are many additional excellent cash back credit card options in the country, and some of them also have high earning rates, but they are all fee-based and not as good as the Tangerine Money-Back card. 

Tangerine is undoubtedly one of the best digital banks currently operating in the country, so it makes sense that it would find a place in this assessment. The annual fee is annoying, but it is essential to consider it before applying for a credit card for cashback. For the following reasons, the cashback card is an excellent no-fee option for those with an annual fee. First, there’s no need to top up the $1,000 monthly fee on your monthly earnings, given the considerable return.

To help you, we’ve compiled a list of the best cashback credit cards in Canada with a minimum of $1,000 in annual fees.

If you have opted for rewards with credit cards in cash-back payments, you should consider one of the Tangerine Cash MasterCards with an annual minimum of $1,000. If you’re looking for the best cashback credit cards in Canada with an annual fee of less than $500, you’ll need to find another that won’t be as expensive as the one below. Mile Cash credit card is the only one on this list with no monthly and minimum fees. Its no-cashback card makes it cheaper than any other cashback card.

If you’re looking for food and gas, take the CIBC Dividend Visa Infinite card, which rewards you for spending. If you spend at least $2,000 a month on credit cards, the Visa signature card may suit you. However, the $1,500 monthly fee is hard to top if you’re looking for a high-fee cashback credit card with no monthly fees.

It seems counter-productive – intuitively paying an annual fee for a cashback credit card, but it’s worth it if the card offers a good amount of cash – to repay rewards such as an annual bonus of $1,000. If you already have a high fee credit card, such as the Visa Signature Card or MasterCard Platinum, it may be helpful to get a high fee credit card that offers cash refunds to complement it. But, again, it may seem counter-productive to pay an annual fee with a cashback credit card. Still, it is worth taking advantage of the extra cashback rewards, particularly those with high spending habits.

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