If you’ve kept up with this blog for a while then you’ll know that I tend to prefer cash back to travel rewards. Unfortunately there aren’t a lot of options for earning big rewards from cash back credit cards. That’s why I was excited (and a little surprised) to see a new cash back card offering from BMO.
The new BMO CashBack World Elite MasterCard offers unlimited cash back on everything you buy, no matter what spending category. The card pays a flat rate of 1.75 percent on all purchases – the highest base rate of any cash back card on the market. It also comes with a few other goodies, such as:
- Extended Warranty Plus – Which doubles the original manufacturer’s warranty period, up to a maximum of two additional years rather than the standard of one year.
- $0 Annual Fee for the first year – This offer is limited to new accounts. Applications must be received between May 13, 2015, and August 31, 2015. Full annual fee ($120) applies after the first year.
- Free additional cards – Add additional cardholders to your credit card account and earn even more cash back with no additional annual fee.
Your cash back rewards accumulate and automatically get credited to your statement annually (in January).
How does it compare?
When we last ranked cash back credit cards we looked at no-fee cards and annual fee cards to see how they each stacked up.
On $12,000 per year in spending, the BMO CashBack World Elite MasterCard pays $210 in the first year and then just $90 each year thereafter (after deducting the annual fee).
Conversely, the SimplyCash Card from American Express pays $307.50 in the first year and then $150 per year afterwards.
It’s clear the new BMO card is not meant for light spenders, as it would rank no better than 5th best in the no-fee, low spend category.
On $30,000 per year in spending, the BMO CashBack World Elite MasterCard pays $525 in the first year and then $405 each year thereafter (after deducting the annual fee).
The Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite – reigning cash back king in Canada – pays $732 in the first year and then $633 per year afterwards.
The new BMO card slides into the number 3 spot for best cash back credit card, trailing the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite card and coming in slightly behind the SimplyCash Preferred Card from American Express (due to its generous 6-month bonus period and lower annual fee of $79).
It’s great to see another solid cash back card offering, this time from one of the major banks. In a time where the best rewards cards seem to get discontinued at worst or watered-down at best, it’s a nice to have another rewards card paying more than 1 percent with no hassles or restrictions.
Still, it’s not enough to put the BMO CashBack World Elite MasterCard into the conversation of best cash back credit card on the market. But if you’re looking for a solid rewards card and don’t want the hassle of carrying multiple cards to use for groceries, gas, and travel, then this card is a decent choice.