ATB Mastercard: Finding the Right Card For You

April 19, 2020
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What are you looking for in a credit card? No matter what your financial needs are, there’s an ATB Mastercard for you. From great earn rates to amazing rewards and even low interest rate, looking to save money, improve your credit score or earn travel perks or rewards, read on to find out which card is right for you. Keep in mind that to qualify for the cards, you need to be a resident of Alberta.

To us, the ATB world Elite Mastercard is the best card in the ATB range as it brings more value, good perks and great earn rates.

ATB Mastercards

There are plenty of benefits of banking with Alberta Treasury Branches (ATB) Financial, mostly because it is Alberta focused. This means all ATB banks are geared towards providing the best services for all residents of Alberta whether it is for your personal or professional needs. In this review, we look at the nine ATB Mastercards on offer and recommend the best card based on the ATB advantages.

Types Of ATB Mastercards

ATB currently offers 9 types of Mastercard credit cards:

Gold Cash Rewards Mastercard
Gold My Rewards Travel Mastercard
World Elite Mastercard
Preferred Fixed-Rate Mastercard
Preferred Variable-Rate Mastercard
Alberta Mastercard
Alberta Mastercard-Secured
US Dollar Mastercard
Load & Go Prepaid Mastercard

Here is a summary of the perks you get with each card:

Features and Benefits Gold Cash Rewards Mastercard Gold My Rewards Travel Mastercard ATB World Elite Mastercard
Welcome Bonus Points00120
Earn Rate on Travel 1% cash back on every $1 10 points on every $1 1.5% on every $1
Earn Rate on Food & Drink 1% cash back on every $1 10 points on every $1 1.5% on every $1
Companion Tickets000
Hotel Benefits000
Concierge Service001
Comprehensive Travel Insurance $300,750$300,000$2,006,500
Foreign Transaction Fee2.9% 2.9% 2.9%
Interest Rates (only if they’re different from 19.99% and 22.99%)000
Annual Fee$0$0$120
Features and Benefits Preferred Fixed-Rate Mastercard Preferred Variable-Rate Mastercard Alberta Mastercard
Welcome Bonus Points000
Earn Rate on Travel000
Earn Rate on Food & Drink000
Companion Tickets000
Hotel Benefits000
Concierge Service000
Comprehensive Travel Insurance 000
Foreign Transaction Fee2.9%2.9%2.9
Interest Rates (only if they’re different from 19.99% and 22.99%) 10.9%  +5% for purchases
+6% for cash advances
Pay interest on unpaid balances
Annual Fee$29$29$0
Features and Benefits US Dollar Mastercard Load & Go Prepaid Mastercard
Welcome Bonus Points00
Earn Rate on Travel00
Earn Rate on Food & Drink00
Companion Tickets00
Hotel Benefits00
Concierge Service00
Comprehensive Travel Insurance 00
Foreign Transaction FeeNo exchange fees for US dollar (USD) purchases 2.9%
Interest Rates (only if they’re different from 19.99% and 22.99%)00
Annual Fee$19$15

To make things easier to understand and to be able to compare cards, we classified them into 6 different categories:

  1. Travel rewards cards
  2. Low-rate credit cards
  3. Rewards cards
  4. No annual fee cards
  5. US Dollar card
  6. Load & Go Prepaid cards

#1 Best Travel Rewards ATB Mastercard

ATB offers three different cards that cater to different travelers.

  • Gold Cash Rewards Mastercard
  • Gold My Rewards Travel Mastercard
  • ATB World Elite Mastercard

To compare these credit cards side by side, we scored them in ten different categories. The scores, which you’ll find in the following table, are on a 0-10 points scale and are based on our deep analysis of the nitty-gritty details behind each feature and benefit.

Gold Cash Rewards MastercardGold My Rewards Travel Mastercard ATB World Elite Mastercard
Welcome Bonus003
Rewards Program686
Earning Rates4109
Travel Benefits038
Annual Benefits vs. Annual Fee5510
Referral Program000
Travel Insurance233
Purchase Coverage776
Foreign Transaction Fees444
Customer Service & Online Experience888
Total364857

If you’re looking for Mastercards that offer travel rewards and one that comes with zero annual fees, then the Gold Cash Rewards Mastercard & Gold My Rewards Travel Mastercard are great options. Both these cards also offer discounts of up to 25% on car rentals.

The Gold My Rewards Travel Mastercard offers better travel benefits among the two, such as flight delay and delayed luggage insurance as well as travel assistance services. You can use your points to book flights and there are no blackout periods to deal with.

The ATB World Elite Mastercard takes the cake in this category. It has excellent travel rewards such as two complimentary lounge visits each and concierge services. You get 1.5% on earn rates on all purchases and a comprehensive travel insurance coverage. However, the card comes with a $120 annual fee.

Who Are These Cards Suitable For?

In the ATB line up, the two first cards offer a moderate range of travel rewards and it would benefit a person who travels at least 2 to 3 times a year. They offer the bare minimum in terms of travel insurance and benefits. However, if you are a more frequent flyer, then the best one you can choose is the ATB World Elite Mastercard. Get yours today and start earning your way to a better travel experience.

#2 Low-Rate Credit Cards

ATB offers two low-rate credit cards, one with a variable rate, and one with a fixed rate:

  • ATB Preferred Variable-Rate Mastercard
  • ATB Preferred Fixed-Rate Mastercard

Here are these cards’ scores compared side by side, on the same scale as before:

ATB Preferred Variable-Rate MastercardATB Preferred Fixed-Rate Mastercard
Welcome Bonus00
Rewards Program00
Earning Rates00
Travel Benefits00
Annual Benefits vs. Annual Fee44
Referral Program00
Travel Insurance00
Purchase Coverage00
Foreign Transaction Fees44
Customer Service & Online Experience88
Total1616

ATB offers a variable-rate credit card through the ATB Preferred Variable-Rate Mastercard. This card’s purchase rate can be as low as the ATB Prime rate + 5% for purchases. You can also get a cash advance interest rate as low as the ATB Prime rate +6%  and a low annual fee.

If you are looking for a card that offers a fixed interest rate for the lifespan of the card, then get the Preferred Fixed-Rate Mastercard. This card’s main focus is the Flexible credit with a fixed 10.9% interest rate. This card has a low annual fee as well as an ambitious purchase and cash advance interest rate.

Who Are These Cards Suitable For?

Both the variable rates and the fixed rate on these cards are much lower than the market rate (20% and 23%, respectively). The first one is subjected to fluctuations with the prime interest rate (that’s why they’re called variable rates). This card is clearly designed for people who can’t pay off balances on their cards quickly. If you plan to carry a balance every month, then the ATB Preferred Variable-Rate Mastercard is your best option, since it offers the lowest rates.

The flexible credit rate is what will attract people who are looking for consistency and for those who do not have the capacity to pay instantly only when the rates are good. If consistency in your payments is important, this card serves its purpose.

#3 Rewards Credit Cards

For rewards, ATB offers the cards below that offer some of the best rewards rates.

  • Gold My Rewards Travel Mastercard
  • ATB World Elite Mastercard

Here are these cards’ scores compared side by side, on the same scale as before:

Gold My Rewards Travel MastercardATB World Elite Mastercard
Welcome Bonus03
Rewards Program86
Earning Rates109
Travel Benefits38
Annual Benefits vs. Annual Fee510
Referral Program00
Travel Insurance36
Purchase Coverage33
Foreign Transaction Fees44
Customer Service & Online Experience88
Total4457

The Gold My Rewards Travel Mastercard has among the best cashback among all the ATB cards. With this card, you earn  Earn 10 points for every $1 you spend. It comes with no limits on the points you can earn and there’s also no expiration date on the rewards.  

The second best in terms of rewards is ATB World Elite Mastercard with 1.5% earn rates on all purchases.

If a card with rewards is what you’re looking for, then the Gold My Rewards Travel Mastercard is the choice you want to go for.

Who are these cards suitable for?

The Gold My Rewards Card not only stands out in the ATB line for its Travel benefits but also its cashback plan. It is an ideal card to sign up for if you want a card that offers pretty decent travel rewards and cashback plans. This way, you don’t need to sign up for two different cards that focus heavily on just one benefit.

#4 No Annual Fee ATB Mastercard

No-Annual Fee cards are a much-preferred element in cards. In the ATB line up, here are 3 cards with no annual fees:

  • Gold Cash Rewards Mastercard
  • Gold My Rewards Travel Mastercard
  • Alberta Mastercard

Here’s the score chart comparing these cards side-by-side on a scale of 0-10.

Gold Cash Rewards MastercardGold My Rewards Travel MastercardAlberta Mastercard
Welcome Bonus000
Rewards Program680
Earning Rates4100
Travel Benefits030
Annual Benefits vs. Annual Fee555
Referral Program000
Travel Insurance230
Purchase Coverage330
Foreign Transaction Fees444
Customer Service & Online Experience888
Total314417

ATB’s offering for no annual fee cards is the Gold Cash Rewards Mastercard, Gold My Rewards Travel Mastercard, and Alberta Mastercard. As mentioned previously, the Gold Cash Rewards and Gold My Rewards Travel cards come with travel extras.

However, if you are looking for a card to use for emergency purposes without all the bells and whistles and you don’t meet the eligibility criteria for the other two, you can go for the Alberta Mastercard. This as basic as cards can get and it’s also free.

Which of these cards should you get? We would pick the Gold My Rewards Travel Mastercard because not only does this card have top-notch earn rates and good travel rewards, these perks are sweetened with no-annual-fees.

Who are these cards suitable for?

We’ve talked about the other cards extensively in the previous categories. For this category, let’s focus on the Alberta Mastercard. It is the most basic card you could ask for- no annual fees, hidden charges, no cashback plans, no rewards, and benefits. This card would be useful for someone who doesn’t spend often on credit but requires a card nonetheless for emergency purposes. You could use if in the event you need emergency cash, pay for an unforeseen purchase, book a last-minute flight- you get the idea.

#5 An ATB Mastercard For Purchases In US Dollar

If you are looking for a card that makes US Dollar purchases easier, this card is for you:

  • ATB US Dollar Mastercard

There’s only one card in ATB that caters to no-exchange fees in US dollar purchases. Here’s the score chart on a scale of 0-10.

ATB US Dollar Mastercard
Welcome Bonus0
Rewards Program0
Earning Rates0
Travel Benefits0
Annual Benefits vs. Annual Fee5
Referral Program0
Travel Insurance0
Purchase Coverage10
Foreign Transaction Fees4
Customer Service & Online Experience8
Total37

The US Dollar Mastercard comes with a low annual of $19 but this is waived if you are an ATB Advantage Account holder. If you often cross the border for work or travel, this card has no surprise fees- no exchange fees for any USD purchases, your card is charged in USD and appears as USD  on your statements. 

Who Is This Card Suitable For?

This card is clearly designed for people regularly crossing the border to the US and making purchases in USD. You can use Canadian dollars to make your payments using the US Dollar Mastercard. The exchange rate depends on the date of when you make the payment on your card balance and not the date of the original credit transactions.

#6 Honorary Mention: The Load & Go Prepaid Mastercard

ATB offers one more Mastercard product which is not really a credit card. You can opt for the Load & Go Prepaid Mastercard which has an annual fee of $1.25/month and is a great option if you want to start your child on a credit card. The Load & Go is a prepaid Mastercard that is not tied to any cash accounts. You decide how much cash you want to load into it and your child can use it anywhere a Mastercard is accepted. This way, you don’t need to worry about overspending.

The Bottom Line On ATB Mastercard

ATB offers a variety of different credit cards that cater to the financial needs of Albertan residents. Depending on what your needs are, there is sure to be a card for you. We hope the analysis above has given you an idea of which card best fits your needs. In the meantime, you can check out other travel credit cards as well as other cashback cards Canada banks have to offer.

After evaluating the nine different ATB credit cards, we firmly believe that the best option for most Canadians is the ATB World Elite Mastercard. It does have the highest annual fee of the bunch, but the benefits make up for it big time. Just the Loungekey airport lounge membership is worth much more than the annual fee.

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