6 Best BMO Credit Cards In Canada (Dec 2022)

October 28, 2022
Blog

There are quite a few good BMO credit cards in Canada, but some stand out above the rest for their impressive rates, complimentary memberships, and low annual fees. I constantly keep up with the latest options and policy changes and make my recommendations below based on years of experience.

I recommend the BMO Cashback Mastercard as the best BMO credit card in Canada due to its no annual fee, 3% cash back rate on groceries, and promotional cash back. It is one of the most flexible BMO credit cards, and it comes with a welcome bonus of $125.

What Are BMO Credit Cards?

The Bank Of Montreal – also known as BMO – is one of the ‘Big 5 Banks’ of Canada, with over 800 branches in the US and Canada. BMO services more than 7 million customers and operates as BMO Financial Group and BMO Harris Bank in the US.

BMO offers all kinds of credit cards, including cash back, travel, low-interest, and even no-annual-fee credit cards. They also offer many good options for students looking to build a credit history, and people looking to skip currency exchange fees when purchasing abroad or online.

Without further ado, here are the best BMO credit cards Canada has to offer.

The Best BMO Credit Cards

  1. BMO CashBack Mastercard: Best for cash back on groceries with no annual fee
  2. BMO CashBack World Elite Mastercard: Best for cashback overall
  3. BMO AIR MILES Mastercard: Best for air miles with no annual fees
  4. BMO Preferred Rate Mastercard:  Best for low-interest rate and low annual fees
  5. BMO Eclipse Visa Infinite Card: Best for lifestyle (gas, groceries, and dining out) purchases and bonus points
  6. BMO U.S. Dollar MasterCard: Best for purchases in U.S dollars

BMO CashBack MasterCard

Great for high earn rate on groceries and very low balance transfer fees
  • Annual Fee
    $0
  • Interest Rate
    19.99% on purchases, 22.99% on cash advances
  • Welcome Bonus
    $25
  • Rec. Credit Score
    660+
  • Features & Benefits

    • $125 in cash back as a welcome bonus after spending $2,500 within your first 3 months
    • Get a 1.99% introductory interest rate on Balance Transfers for 9 months, 1% fee applies to balance amounts transferred
    • Redeem your cash back as a direct deposit, credit on your statement, or a deposit to your BMO InvestorLine account
    • Extended Warranty and purchase protection
    • Discount on car rentals
  • Pros & Cons

    Why we like it

    Great for high earn rate on groceries and very low balance transfer fees

    Pros

    • Earn 5% cash back on all purchases for the first 3 months
    • 3% cash back on groceries
    • Very low introductory interest rate (1.99%) for the first 9 months
    • Redeem any amount of cash back instantly & set up automatic deposits
    • Extended warranty and protection on all purchases
    • 25% off at National Car Rental and Alamo Rent a Car locations

    Cons

    • Cash back capped at $500/month
    • Low base earn rate
  • More Details

    Bonuses and fees

    The BMO CashBack Mastercard is a no-fee credit card that offers very competitive cash back rates, even compared to some premium credit cards. New cardholders can enjoy a 5% cash back on all purchases for the first three months. If you’re looking to transfer your balance, this is also a great option; the BMO CashBack Mastercard charges just 1% in transfer fees and has a fixed 1.99% rate for the first 9 months.

    Rewards

    The BMO CashBack Mastercard offers cash back on all purchases and bonuses in certain categories. Here’s the breakdown:

    • 3% cash back on groceries 
    • 1% on subscriptions like streaming services and utilities
    • 0.5% on all other purchases

    Perks and Benefits

    Redeeming Your Cash Back

    After accumulating $25 in cash back, you can redeem it at any time. Here are the options you have:

    • Set up deposits directly into a BMO account (Savings, Chequing, or InvestorLine)
    • Get a credit on your monthly statement
    • Set up recurrent payments when you accumulate a certain amount of cash back
    • Get a one-time lump sum payment

    Keep in mind your cash back rewards won’t expire as long as your account is in good standing.

BMO CashBack World Elite Mastercard

Great for high promotional earn rate for the first three months and high cash back on groceries
  • Annual Fee
    $120 (1st year free)
  • Interest Rate
    20.99% on purchases, 23.99% on cash advances
  • Welcome Bonus
    $200
  • Rec. Credit Score
    760+
  • Features & Benefits

    • Earn $200 in cash back after spending $2,000 in your first 3 months
    • Complimentary Mastercard Airport Experiences membership
    • Complimentary Roadside Assistance Program
    • Mastercard Travel Rewards membership and access to cash back offers when travelling abroad
  • Pros & Cons

    Why we like it

    Great for high promotional earn rate for the first three months and high cash back on groceries

    Pros

    • Earn 10% cash back on all purchases for the first 3 months
    • 5% cash back on groceries
    • First year's fee is completely waived
    • Comprehensive travel and medical insurance
    • Access to a comlimentary road assistance program
    • Purchase ProtectionPlus insurance for stolen or damaged items

    Cons

    • Requires a minimum yearly income of $80,000
    • Relatively high annual fee
  • More Details

    Bonuses and fees

    The annual fee for the BMO CashBack World Elite Mastercard is $120 (waived for the first year). It comes with one of the best promotional cash back rates of 10% for the first three months, and you can redeem your cash back for as little as $1 at any time. You can also set up automatic deposits and get your cash back sent to your BMO chequing or savings account, your InverstorLine account, or use it directly as credit in your monthly statement.

    Perks and Benefits

    The BMO CashBack World Elite Mastercard offers many ways to earn cash back. For the first three months, you will get 10% cash back on all categories. After the promotional period, you will still earn a substantial amount of cash back on eligible categories: groceries (5% cash back), transit (4% cash back, including taxis and public transportation), gas and EV charging (3% cash back), recurring payments and subscriptions (2% cash back), and 1% on all other purchases.

    Additional benefits include a Mastercard Airport Experiences complimentary membership and access to exclusive Mastercard Travel Reward offers when travelling and shopping outside Canada.

    Insurance

    The BMO CashBack World Elite Mastercard lives up to its name and offers comprehensive travel and medical insurance, including:

    • Baggage delay and loss insurance
    • Flight delay insurance
    • Car rental insurance
    • Travel accident insurance
    • Medical emergency insurance
    • Roadside Assistance program

BMO AIR MILES MasterCard

Great for travel perks, bonus points on partner stores, and travel insurance
  • Annual Fee
    $0
  • Interest Rate
    19.99% on purchases, 22.99% on cash advances
  • Welcome Bonus
    1,500 pts
  • Rec. Credit Score
    660+
  • Features & Benefits

    • Earn 1,500 AIR Miles bonus miles as a welcome bonus
    • No Annual fee
    • Discount on car rentals in Canada and abroad
    • Extended Warranty and purchase protection
  • Pros & Cons

    Why we like it

    Great for travel perks, bonus points on partner stores, and travel insurance

    Pros

    • 1,500 bonus welcome points
    • Earn 3 BMO AIR MILES for every $25 spent at AIR MILES partner stores
    • Show your AIR MILES Card at participating partners and earn twice the amoung of AIR MILES
    • Add additional cardholders and get free AIR MILES
    • Comprehensive travel insurance
    • 25% off at National Car Rental and Alamo Rent a Car locations

    Cons

    • Needs a good credit score (660+)
    • Low earn rate when not shopping at partner stores (1 point per $25 spent)
  • More Details

    Bonuses and fees 

    The BMO AIR MILES Mastercard is a no-fee low-interest travel card. It comes with a generous welcome bonus and is a great option if you want to transfer your card balance: there is a 1% fee on transfers and an introductory interest rate of just 1.99% for the first 9 months. 

    Rewards

    You can earn AIR MILES in two ways. Rates are:

    • 3 miles per $25 spent at participating AIR MILES partners
    • 2 miles per $25 spent on groceries

    Additionally, you can get double the miles by showing your AIR MILES card at participating shops and retailers.

    Perks and Benefits 

    • 25% off at partner rentals National Car Rental and Alamo Rent A Car locations
    • Bonus miles when you add an authorized users
    • Warranty and purchase protection

    Insurance 

    The BMO AIR MILES World Elite Mastercard has comprehensive medical and travel insurance, including car rental, flight delay, and baggage insurance.

BMO Preferred Rate Mastercard

Great for low interests and low balance transfer fees
  • Annual Fee
    $20 (1st year free)
  • Interest Rate
    12.99% on purchases, 15.99% on cash advances
  • Welcome Bonus
    N/A
  • Rec. Credit Score
    660+
  • Features & Benefits

    • 0.99% introductory interest rate on balance transfers for the first 9 months
    • 2% transfer fee and the annual fee is waived for the first year
    • Extended warranty and purchase protection
    • Zero Dollar Liability
  • Pros & Cons

    Why we like it

    Great for low interests and low balance transfer fees

    Pros

    • 0.99% interest for the first 9 months after transferring your balance
    • Low 2% balance transfer fee (first year fee is waived)
    • Low purchase interest rate of just 12.99%
    • Extended warranty and purchase protection
    • Low annual fee of $20 ($0 if you have a BMO Performance chequing account)
    • Add a cardholder for free

    Cons

    • Doesn't have a lot of featuers
    • No rewards on purchases
  • More Details

    Bonuses and fees

    The BMO Preferred Rate Mastercard is a low-interest credit card with an annual fee of just $20. If you have a BMO Performance chequing account linked with your card, you can save up on this fee for as long as you have the account.

    The balance transfer fee is 2%, and the interest rate on your balance is just 0.99% for the first 9 months. Other applicable interest rates are 12.99% on purchases and 15.99% on cash advances.

    Perks and Benefits 

    Here are some of the perks and benefits of this card:

    • Extended warranty
    • The annual fee can be waived if you have a BMO Performance chequing account
    • Zero liability policy
    • 24/7 emergency support worldwide
    • Apply and receive a response within 5 minutes

BMO Eclipse Visa Infinite Card

Great for high earn rate on groceries, gas, and transit
  • Annual Fee
    $120 (1st year free)
  • Interest Rate
    20.99% on purchases, 23.99% on cash advances
  • Welcome Bonus
    70,000 pts
  • Rec. Credit Score
    725+
  • Features & Benefits

    • Earn 70,000 bonus points as a welcome bonus for your first year
    • Earn a $50 lifestyle credit as a welcome bonus
    • Add an authorized user and earn 10% bonus points
    • Redeem your points to pay for purchases
  • Pros & Cons

    Why we like it

    Great for high earn rate on groceries, gas, and transit

    Pros

    • 70,000 bonus welcome points
    • Earn 5 BMO Rewards points per $1 spent on groceries, gas, and transit
    • Earn 10% more BMO Reward points when you add an authorized user
    • Car rental & mobile device insurance (for up to $1,000)
    • Complimentary Concierge service through the Visa Infinite Concierge program
    • Comprehensive travel and medical insurance

    Cons

    • Requires a minimum yearly income of $60,000
    • Needs an excellent credit score (725+)
  • More Details

    Bonuses and fees 

    The BMO Eclipse World Elite Mastercard has an annual fee of $120, and, like all BMO cards, it is completely waived for new cardholders for the first year. To apply for this card, you will need an income of $60,000 and a credit score of 725 or more. It offers attractive travel benefits and includes access to the Visa Infinite Troon Golf Benefit at over 95 resorts.

    Rewards

    With this card, you can earn points on every purchase. Here are the rates:

    • 5 points per $1 spent on dining, eats & drinks, gas, and transit
    • 1 point per $1 spent everywhere else

    Perks and benefits

    • 10% more points on all purchases when you add an authorized user
    • $50 annual Lifestyle Credit
    • Access to the Visa Infinite Luxury Hotel Collection and Visa Infinite Concierge

    Insurance 

    The BMO Eclipse Visa Infinite offers insurance in several categories:

    • Mobile device insurance
    • Travel insurance
    • Emergency medical insurance
    • Car rental collission
    • Extended warranty

How Do BMO Credit Cards Work?

BMO offers a variety of credit cards best suitable for different purposes, including obtaining rewards and saving on interest and fees. They also have credit cards tailored to specific demographics, such as students or those with not-so-great credit scores. These are called student credit cards and secured credit cards, respectively.

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As of this article's writing, BMO has 13 personal credit cards on offer.

BMO Credit Cards FAQs

How Should You Choose A BMO Credit Card?

Choosing the right BMO credit card for you would depend on what you want to achieve with a credit card. Below is a list of all the BMO cards on offer and their different value propositions:

How Do You Apply For A BMO Credit Card?

To obtain a BMO credit card, you must be considered eligible. Eligibility requirements differ by credit card, but they typically include the following:

  • You must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident
  • You have not declared bankruptcy in the past seven years
  • You have attained the age of majority in your province of residence
  • You meet a minimum individual or household income requirement

Which Credit Bureau Does BMO check?

BMO checks credit reports from either Equifax or TransUnion credit bureaus.

Can I Have More Than One BMO Credit Card?

Yes, there are no limits on how many BMO credit cards you can have.

How Do I Redeem My BMO Rewards?

Cash back rewards can be redeemed through a direct deposit into a BMO account or a credit to the BMO credit card statement. They can also be redeemed anytime as long as a minimum of $1 cashback has been accumulated.

Other forms of rewards can be redeemed from the official BMO website. BMO reward points can be redeemed for over 800 products and services, from gift cards to electronic gadgets to kitchen accessories.

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