Canadian Amazon Visa card

cdnSpinalTap

Mouseketeer
Joined
Aug 9, 2007
So, I did an analysis of my previous year's spend and compared the ScotiaBank Infinite Visa and the Rogers World Elite Mastercard. A few caveats:
  • This analysis is for me and is based on my spending habits and how I use the card. I use the Rogers MasterCard for all of my US $ purchases and the occasional Canadian $ purchase. For the previous year, I did have some Canadian purchases on it, but I usually use my MBNA Mastercard for Canadian purchases to get the full 2% back on everything.
  • I am only posting this here for interest sake and not to say that someone made a wrong decision for themselves in going with another product. Again, this is what works for me and gives me the best return based on my spending habits and the features I value.
  • I am assuming that Scotia Rewards are earned on the converted US $ amount and not on the base US $ charge.
  • I put all of my charges for the last year in a spreadsheet and assigned categories to them to ensure that I "earned" the right amount of Scotia Rewards for each purchase.
  • Year 1 includes the 25,000 point sign up bonus and the $50 rebate from GCR, as well as the annual fee
  • Year 2 is the same as Year 1, except it assumes no sign up bonus and no $50 rebate from GCR

Year 1.jpeg

Year 2.jpeg

A (negative) number above represents a higher net cost for the ScotiaBank Infinite Visa.

In terms of features, the insurance benefits are comparable as far as I can tell.

For the lounge pass, they are valued at $27.00 per pass (this is the price you would pay for a new pass if you run out). Therefore, 6 passes would be valued at $162.00.

If I include the lounge passes, I would come out ahead on the ScotiaBank Infinite Visa in Year 1. Year 2, I would still be substantially behind. I don't value the lounge passes and choose not to include those in my decision as to which card to get.

Anyway, interesting for my spending habits. As much as I dislike Rogers, they keep coming out ahead for me, not matter how much I don't want them to!

As usual, please let me know if you see any errors and I will correct accordingly. I'm interested in getting this as accurate as possible.
 

FigmentSpark

DIS Veteran
Joined
Apr 9, 2016
So, given the way you use your card, the Rogers card is better?

Have you done an analysis if you decided to make either one your primary card and do all your spending on it? I think that's where a fee card, like the Scotia card will have more benefit, but I'd be curious to see what your analysis would find.
 

efrant

Mouseketeer
Joined
Jan 4, 2017
@cdnSpinalTap, your analysis seems to make sense. It's hard to verify though, because you didn't provide the split between your CAD purchases vs. your USD purchases and grocery/dining/transit vs. other spend. (Did you only spend ~$1,425 on grocery/dining/transit for the whole year on the card?) As well, did you apply the 4% Rogers point amount on the converted CAD amount excluding the 2.5% fee? And I don't think having the sections related to "Account Credit" are really relevant. It seems reasonable to assume that no one will use points for a statement credit at 0.8c when they can use it as a statement travel credit at 1.0c. But yes, I think you are correct in your analysis.

A few other things to keep in mind for the Rogers card:
1) If you ever return anything, you don't get the 2.5% f/x fee refunded;
2) You pay the 2.5% f/x fee up front, but only get the statement credit once a year.

A few things to keep in mind for the Scotia card:
1) If you spend over $40,000 in a year, you get an extra $100 reward;
2) In terms of the lounge passes, the cost to obtain the six of them is US$99 + 6 x US$27 = US$261, not C$162. I wouldn't pay for that, so like you, I wouldn't value them at that either.

In terms of insurance, the cards are a little different:

Emergency Medical
Scotia: 25 days
Rogers: 10 days

Trip Interruption/Cancellation
Scotia: $2,500/person ($10,000 max)
Rogers: $1,000/person ($5,000 max)

Flight Delay
Scotia: $500/person
Rogers $150/person/day ($450 max)

Lost/Delayed Baggage
Scotia: $1,000 after 4 hours
Rogers: none?

Travel Accident:
Scotia: $500,000
Rogers: none?

Rental Car Collision
Scotia: 48 days
Rogers: 31 days
 
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  • cdnSpinalTap

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Aug 9, 2007
    Hello,

    Thanks everyone for your input. Your questions are certainly making me think of other things, all with the goal of getting the best overall return.

    As mentioned, I only use the Rogers Platinum MasterCard (soon to be World Elite MasterCard) for US $ purchases, and 90+% of that would be travel. Some of it could be Amazon.com purchases, but mostly for US travel.

    To address some of your questions:
    • Canadian Purchases - $7,230.58
    • US $ Purchases, Converted to CDN $, with no FX Fee - $29,099.47
    • Groceries, Converted to CDN $, with no FX Fee - $731.18
    • Dining, Converted to CDN $, with no FX Fee - $1,324.00
    • Transit, Converted to CDN $, with no FX Fee - $101.86
    • The 4% Rogers bonus was only applied to the converted amount, excluding the FX fee (or 1.75% for non-USD purchases)
    • The Account Credit was included to make it an apples to apples comparison with getting cash applied to the Rogers Account. You are correct that not many people would do that, but just wanted to include it for comparison. Also, I am not sure how they are going to do the account credit on the World Elite MasterCard, as they have not released those details yet. I'm going on the assumption that it will be the same - which works for me.
    • Since 90+% of my purchases are for travel, I am not concerned about returning anything and losing the 2.5% fee. But you are correct, that could potentially be an issue.
    • Since this card is only used for US Travel, I am extremely unlikely to put more than $40,000 on the card. The spend that I did for my analysis included a 2 week Disney Vacation at a deluxe resort and about a week in Vegas for business and I almost hit $40,000 - but unlikely that I personally would in any given year. I suspect I would normally come in around $30,000 per year on this card.
    • You are correct on the lounge passes. I did not notice in the fine print that they were USD. But as you said, this is a non-issue for me.
    • For the insurance, we would need to compare the Scotia Card to the insurance package offered with a World Elite MasterCard, since that is what I am doing the entire compare on. The details for this insurance can be found here. I did not do a detailed comparison, but they do look generally comparable to me - each having pros and cons in different categories.

    Again - @efrant - thanks for your input. I just want to be clear that I am not arguing with you here, just addressing your points as they relate to me personally. Obviously, you would have different things that are important to you and that would impact your decision.

    @FigmentSpark - to answer your question, yes, for me, the Rogers Card is better. I do have the details and analysis on my other spends and will post it shortly.
     

    efrant

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jan 4, 2017
    [snip]
    • For the insurance, we would need to compare the Scotia Card to the insurance package offered with a World Elite MasterCard, since that is what I am doing the entire compare on. The details for this insurance can be found here. I did not do a detailed comparison, but they do look generally comparable to me - each having pros and cons in different categories.
    Yes, I was comparing the exact insurance for the Rogers World Elite card vs. the Scotia Infinite. (Not all WE cards have the same insurance packages.) Source for the Rogers WE card is here: https://www.rogersbank.com/legaldocs/en/WE_insurance_info.en.pdf

    Again - @efrant - thanks for your input. I just want to be clear that I am not arguing with you here, just addressing your points as they relate to me personally. Obviously, you would have different things that are important to you and that would impact your decision.
    Didn't think you were arguing at all! :cheers: That is exactly the analysis everyone should be doing when trying to find the best card for them.

    A quick back of the envelope would suggest that most people would be better off with the Rogers card (from a straight return perspective) if they only used it for foreign currency purchases, given that the card gives you 1.5% return with no fee, while the Scotia card gives you 1.0%, with a 1.0% bonus on grocery/dining/transit. So, unless most of your spend is on those bonus categories, you'd be better off with the Rogers card, not taking into account the lounge passes or insurance or sign-up bonus or high-spend bonus.

    EDIT: So I did a quick calculation based on the numbers you provided and I arrive at pretty close to your numbers: Based on your spending, I calculate the Rogers card would save you $17 more than the Scotia card in the first year, and $317 more in the second year.
     
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    cdnSpinalTap

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Aug 9, 2007
    So, given the way you use your card, the Rogers card is better?

    Have you done an analysis if you decided to make either one your primary card and do all your spending on it? I think that's where a fee card, like the Scotia card will have more benefit, but I'd be curious to see what your analysis would find.
    Hi @FigmentSpark,

    I have the following credit cards that I use on a regular basis:
    • MBNA World Elite MasterCard - used for everyday purchases, $89 fee, 2% cash back on all purchase, no limits, no restrictions. Cash can be taken as account credit anytime, deposited to your chequing/savings account or sent out as a cheque.
    • Rogers Platinum (World Elite MasterCard) for all USD Purchase, no fee, Pay 2.5% FX, get 4% back on USD purchases, 1.75% on everything else
    • 2 x WestJet World Elite Mastercard for 2 Companion Flights and free checked baggage, $198 yearly fee, card not used for any purchases
    To do a comparison for daily spend, I would then need to compare my MBNA World Elite MasterCard to the Scotia Bank Infinite Visa. When I do my comparisons, I usually look strictly at the cash return on the cards. However, the MBNA World Elite also has some travel insurance, as well as some purchase and warranty protection features. I would not do a detailed comparison on those features because they are not as important to me as the cash back.

    When I did the comparison, I am doing a "Year 2" comparison, meaning that I am not including any signup bonuses. Both cards currently have signup bonus that would affect the numbers, but I am more interested in the long term use.

    I pulled the numbers from my financial software for the 2017 calendar year. This is the spend on my MBNA Mastercard. It was high for 2017 as I was travelling quite a bit for work last year, but should provide a pretty realistic comparison. The groceries were also higher than normal, as we had a number of visitors throughout the year. And finally, I estimated Transit and Entertainment, as I do not break these out in my software the same way that Scotia categorizes them. I do feel these estimates are high, but they should provide a reasonable comparison.

    Here is the comparison. Hopefully it is easy to follow.

    MBNA.jpeg

    As you can see, the MBNA is miles ahead, based on my spending habits. I continually keep my eyes open for other cards, but the MBNA has been hard to beat for a number of years now. There are some great Reward cards based on American Express, but my grocery store and gas station do not take AMEX.

    In a perfect world, Rogers would bump up the non-USD reward amount from 1.75% to 2.0%. I considered consolidating to the Rogers card, but it would cost me about $360 per year in lost rewards (.0025 x $144,372.70).
     
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    FigmentSpark

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 9, 2016
    Thanks. It just goes to show you that real rewards aren't as cut an dried as it seems. I have to say that I used to be happy with the Cap One Costco card until I discovered I was getting a measly .5% cashback, which is nothing. I started using my Fido Mastercard at Costco now and have more than doubled my rewards.
     
  • FigmentSpark

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 9, 2016
    Interesting that it doesn't say you have to use your reward for Rogers' purchases only. It looks like you can redeem for any purchase.
     
  • cdnSpinalTap

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Aug 9, 2007
    Interesting that it doesn't say you have to use your reward for Rogers' purchases only. It looks like you can redeem for any purchase.
    It's a little misleading. The say you can use it for "eligible purchases". They define Eligible Purchases in the definition section and say it has to be a Rogers vendor.
     

    Debbie

    DIScovering DIS magic-missing my colours
    Joined
    Jun 28, 2000
    I was the one who was told that they would send me my cheque for the credit that was on my account. Today, I received my statement with no indication of that at all. I called and got "Could we confirm a few things and we'll get that cheque out to you.....seven to ten business days." It does make me wonder 1) why that wasn't confirmed during my March 16 phone call and 2) when would they have sent me a cheque if I hadn't called to "confirm" my address etc? We wait with bated breath.
    I just wanted to update this. I received my cheque this morning, so it was 8 days from when I spoke to someone. I can now remove Amazon as a biller on my bank accounts and shred the card.
     

    ky.

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Apr 7, 2015
    Anyone know anything about the 'Brim' card now offered on Amazon? I don't understand what the 'fixed instalment fee' is...
    It does seem to have a no foreign transaction fee though.
     

    efrant

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jan 4, 2017
    Anyone know anything about the 'Brim' card now offered on Amazon? I don't understand what the 'fixed instalment fee' is...
    It does seem to have a no foreign transaction fee though.
    The card isn't available yet, and who knows when it will be. They were supposed to launch in March, and it's July now.

    There are only three no-f/x fee cards that are available as of now: Home Trust Visa (no annual fee), Scotia Passport Infinite Visa ($139 annual fee) and HSBC World Elite MasterCard ($149 annual fee). There is also the Rogers World Elite MasterCard (no annual fee) -- it does charge you the f/x fee, but you get a higher reward earn rate on non-CAD transactions, which covers the f/x fee.
     

    samsteele

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 22, 2014
    PP has summed it up well. Brim was in the news last week because of the delay. Once the amazon visa died, I applied for the Home Trust Visa. I was approved quickly but it took approx 2 months to receive the card. I never received the separate PIN in the mail and they reissued that which took another month for me to receive. So 3 months + lag from start to finish. YMMV but if you are in hurry to get the card for an upcoming trip, you may be out of luck. Of note, I was also told there is no way for me to change or customize the PIN.
     

    deedubb

    Always Grumpy, except when at Disney!
    Joined
    Feb 12, 2017
    PP has summed it up well. Brim was in the news last week because of the delay. Once the amazon visa died, I applied for the Home Trust Visa. I was approved quickly but it took approx 2 months to receive the card. I never received the separate PIN in the mail and they reissued that which took another month for me to receive. So 3 months + lag from start to finish. YMMV but if you are in hurry to get the card for an upcoming trip, you may be out of luck. Of note, I was also told there is no way for me to change or customize the PIN.
    Similar experience here, except I did get the PIN the first time around. I hate that you can't change it. I also hate the fact that the statements do not indicate the original US dollar amount or the exchange rate. They only list the final amount in $CAD.
     

    bgula

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 14, 2004
    PP has summed it up well. Brim was in the news last week because of the delay. Once the amazon visa died, I applied for the Home Trust Visa. I was approved quickly but it took approx 2 months to receive the card. I never received the separate PIN in the mail and they reissued that which took another month for me to receive. So 3 months + lag from start to finish. YMMV but if you are in hurry to get the card for an upcoming trip, you may be out of luck. Of note, I was also told there is no way for me to change or customize the PIN.
    I called them and they told me they're working on being able to change your PIN.

    Similar experience here, except I did get the PIN the first time around. I hate that you can't change it. I also hate the fact that the statements do not indicate the original US dollar amount or the exchange rate. They only list the final amount in $CAD.
    Just access your account online and you can see the original US $ amount. Actually has a lot of info about each transaction.

    Also like the fact that they're fast at getting online payments. I can do it the day before the statement is due instead of at least a couple of days with the old Amazon card.
     

    Debbie

    DIScovering DIS magic-missing my colours
    Joined
    Jun 28, 2000
    Similar experience here, except I did get the PIN the first time around. I hate that you can't change it. I also hate the fact that the statements do not indicate the original US dollar amount or the exchange rate. They only list the final amount in $CAD.
    I had a different experience. Got the pin. Got the card. And I've been using it with no issues other than remembering the pin.
    I called them and they told me they're working on being able to change your PIN.
    Just access your account online and you can see the original US $ amount. Actually has a lot of info about each transaction.
    Also like the fact that they're fast at getting online payments. I can do it the day before the statement is due instead of at least a couple of days with the old Amazon card.
    Good information here. Thanks!
     


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