There are quite a few metal credit cards in Canada, but some stand out above the rest for their travel perks, generous welcome bonuses, and comprehensive travel insurance. I constantly keep up with the latest promo rates and interest rates and make my recommendations below based on years of experience.
I recommend the American Express Gold Rewards Card as Canada's #1 metal credit card due to its excellent travel perks and high earning rates. Additionally, it comes with medical and travel insurance and very generous welcome bonuses, on top of a high-quality metal credit card.
What Is A Metal Credit Card?
Metal credit cards are just like regular cards, but instead of plastic, they’re made of metal. In Canada, most metal credit cards are premium travel cards, with all the perks and travel benefits you’d expect. Annual fees are the highest of all credit cards and range from $250 to $699. Travel credit cards allow you to earn rewards in the form of points when you purchase at partner brands or make any travel-related purchase.
Travel cards also require the highest credit scores, averaging a minimum of 710. It’s recommended that you go for a travel card, particularly a metal travel card, only if you can take advantage of all the perks in that year – travel perks like hotel stays or free flights tend to expire yearly.
Without further ado, here are the best metal credit cards Canada has to offer:
The Best Metal Credit Cards In Canada
- American Express Gold Rewards Card: Best for lowest annual fee
- American Express Platinum Card: Best for earning MR points
- American Express Aeroplan Reserve Card: Best for comprehensive travel and medical insurance
- BMO eclipse Visa Infinite Privilege Card: Best for generous welcome bonus
Pros & Cons Of A Metal Credit Card
Pros: Why a metal credit card may be worth it
- More durable than plastic credit cards
- Access to exclusive lounges and hotels
- Perks like priority boarding and free room upgrades on your hotel stays
- If you’re a frequent traveller, you will find it extremely easy to maximize rewards on travel purchases like airfares, hotels, car rentals, and taxis
- Some metal credit cards offer the option to exchange your points with other reward programs
Cons: Why a metal credit card may not be worth it
- Metal cards (and travel credit cards) usually have very high annual fees
- if you don’t travel frequently, you will miss out on most benefits that metal cards offer
- Most metal credit cards require a good-to-excellent credit score (700+)
Types Of Metal Credit Cards In Canada
As of 2022, all metal cards available in Canada are travel credit cards. That is cards that offer travel-related perks. The two main types of travel credit cards are general and co-branded cards. Here are the main difference between the two:
#1 General Travel Credit Cards
With these types of travel credit cards, you earn points (usually in the form of transferable points or travel miles). You can redeem these points on most travel expenses, including airline tickets, hotel stays, or cash back on travel-related purchases. These are the most flexible type of cards; you are not limited to any particular airline or hotel chain.
#2 Co-Branded Travel Credit Cards
Co-branded travel credit cards allow you to redeem your points only at select airlines or hotels. The main benefit over general travel cards is that co-branded card rewards’ tend to be more valuable, at the cost of some flexibility.
How To Choose A Metal Credit Card In Canada
The annual fees are the first thing you should look at when shopping for a metal credit card. Generally, paying a higher annual fee means better perks and rates, but you still have to spend money to earn money. Zero-fee cash back cards aren’t as generous with their rates, but if you pay them on time, they’re guaranteed to make you a profit.
It's important to note that if you’re making purchases just to earn cash back, you’re doing it wrong. The perfect cash back card will fit your spending habits, not increase them.
Some of the best cash back cards in Canada with no annual fees include the BMO CashBack MasterCard and the Tangerine Money-Back credit card. Another great credit card is the Amex Cobalt which has a manageable monthly fee of $12.99 and has a plethora of perks and rewards.
Welcome Bonus And Promotional Rates
Some cash back cards in Canada come with a welcome bonus or promotional rate. Welcome bonuses are one-time rewards for new cardholders, which can take the form of higher cash back rates for fixed periods (usually no more than 3 months and with a built-in spending limit).
Another important factor is the interest rates; if you often fall behind on credit card payments, a cash back card might not be for you. The standard interest rate for credit cards is around 19.99%, and it can easily outweigh the cash back or other travel benefits if you miss payments. Alternatively, you could consider low-interest credit cards.
Credit Card Insurance & Purchase Warranties
All metal credit cards listed here come with travel perks and offer comprehensive travel and medical insurance. These cards usually have the highest annual fees but are a great option if you travel often and want to ensure your family is protected. Here are some of the typical insured categories you can expect:
- Baggage loss insurance
- Baggage delay insurance
- Car rental insurance
- Extended warranty
- Mobile Insurance
- Flight delay insurance
- Purchase assurance
- Travel emergency medical
- Travel accident insurance
- Trip cancellation
- Trip interruption
How To Apply For A Metal Credit Card In Canada
In Canada, the minimum age to request a credit card is the age of the majority. Teens under that age can’t get approved for credit cards but can be added as authorized users to one of their parent’s credit cards. For reference, the age of the majority in Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, Prince Edward Island, and Saskatchewan is 18 years old. In all other provinces, the age of the majority is 19.
Canadian credit cards are available to residents and non-permanent residents. However, most cards require you to be a Canadian resident. Some prepaid, store, and secured credit cards, may not require credit history, but it will depend on the issuer. For premium cards, you can expect residency requirements.
Personal Or Household Income Requirements
Some premium credit cards for people with fair credit come with an annual income requirement, usually ranging from $60,000-$80,000 personal income or $100,000-$150,000 household income. The higher the requirements, the better the perks. Income requirements are usually tied with annual fees as well, and cards with a high-income requirement also tend to have a high annual fee.
Metal Credit Cards FAQs
Are Metal Credit Cards Worth It?
When metal cards might be worth it for you:
- If you earn enough points every year to compensate for the high annual fee
- If you have no trouble keeping up with your monthly credit card payments and are very unlikely to fall behind on payments
- If you are sure you will be able to redeem your points before they expire – travel perks and benefits usually expire every year
When metal credit cards might not be worth it for you
- If you don’t travel a lot, chances are you will not make anywhere near enough to justify the high annual fee
- If you often fall behind on payments, a metal credit card might not be for you. The additional interest you will incur will offset any reward you may gain
- If you don’t want to keep track of the variable point-to-value rate of travel points, you might be better off with a cash back credit card. The latter has a static point-to-cash rate that doesn’t fluctuate
What Is The Most Affordable Metal Credit Card In Canada?
The American Express Gold Rewards Card is Canada's most affordable metal credit card. It has an annual fee of $250, comes with a generous welcome bonus of 60,000 (plus 10,000) MR points, and offers a promotional earn rate of 10 points per $1 spent on eats & drinks purchases for the first 3 months.
What Is The Black Metal Credit Card?
The American Express Centurion Card (also known as the Amex Black Card) is one of the most prestigious credit cards in the world—and also one of the hardest to get. You can't apply for this card, nor can you be referred by a friend; you need to receive an invitation directly from Amex themselves.
Do Metal Cards Work In ATMs?
Yes, metal cards work in ATMs. Metal cards use the same chips to store information that regular plastic cards use.