Do you believe in “the one”? One person, who will mesh with your personality perfectly, and once you meet that person, that’s it?
“The one” is a romantic relationship concept, and it might be true. But when it comes to credit cards, I’m a firm believer that there isn’t one perfect credit card out there for everyone. In fact, in some scenarios, having two different credit cards will maximize your rewards. By using credit cards in tandem, you can earn the maximum amount of points or cash back rewards, no matter what the situation.
Here are three winning credit card combinations that will help you maximize your credit card rewards.
Scotiabank Gold American Express and BMO World Elite MasterCard
Best for: travel junkies
If you travel a lot and value flexibility, the Scotiabank Gold American Express is the credit card for you. Featuring a robust rewards system where you earn four points per dollar spent on gas, groceries, entertainment, and restaurants, and one point per dollar spent on everything else, this credit card will get you in your seat faster. The Scotiabank Gold American Express also allows you to redeem your points by booking on any airline with no blackout dates, and your points pay for the entire ticket including taxes.
An excellent companion to this credit card is the BMO World Elite MasterCard. This credit card has a robust suite of travel insurance coverage including emergency medical, accident, trip interruption and cancellation, flight delay, and baggage damage or loss.
The Scotiabank Gold American Express and the BMO World Elite MasterCard have annual fees of $99 and $150, respectively, which is typical for high-end travel rewards credit cards. Make sure to read the fine print and sign up strategically as both providers frequently offer welcome bonus points in the first year that more than offset the annual fee.
SimplyCash Preferred Card from American Express and Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card
Best for: cash back enthusiasts
If you’re a cash-back credit card enthusiast, you can’t go wrong with this winning combination. First, the SimplyCash Preferred Card from American Express lets you earn 2% cash back on all purchases, with no limits. There is an annual fee of $99, but it’s offset in the first year by the special welcome rate of 5% cash back on eligible gas, grocery, and restaurant purchases for the first six months (up to $300).
Unfortunately, as much as we love the SimplyCash Preferred Card from American Express, the fact remains that some retailers don’t accept American Express credit cards. In those scenarios, it’s smart to have a backup credit card, and we recommend the Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card.
The Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card is a no-fee credit card that earns users 2% cash back in your choice of three of the following categories: restaurants, gas, groceries, drugstore/pharmacy, entertainment, hotels/motels, furniture, monthly bill payments, public transportation, home improvement, and parking.
Once you pick your top three categories, you’ll earn 2% cash back on them and 0.5% cash back on everything else. There is no limit on the cash back you can earn, and your rewards are deposited monthly into your Tangerine savings account, or you can apply them to the balance of your credit card.
Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite and SimplyCash from American Express
Best for: families
If you’ve got a big family, you’ll want to capitalize on your household spending. That’s where the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite comes in. Arguably the best credit card for families, the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite will earn you 4% cash back on gas and groceries, two of the biggest categories for families. You’ll also earn 2% cash back at the pharmacy and when you pay your bills with your credit card.
If you’re a power spender on gas, groceries, and restaurants, you should consider adding the SimplyCash Card from American Express to your arsenal. This no-fee credit card lets you earn a whopping 5% cash back on gas, groceries, and restaurants in the first six months, up to a maximum of $250. After that, you’ll earn 1.25% cash back on everything else.
The 1.25% cash back rate makes the SimplyCash from American Express a great option for charges that don’t fit into the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite’s categories. There is no limit on the cash back you can earn after the promotional period ends, so this credit card should suit you for the long run.
- The Best Credit Cards in Canada for 2017
- Cash Back vs. Travel Rewards: Choose the Best Credit Card for You
- How To Maximize Your Cash-Back Credit Card Rewards