How the Scotia Rewards Program Works

Alyssa Furtado
by Alyssa Furtado March 20, 2015 / No Comments

The Scotia Rewards program is an increasingly popular travel rewards program within Canada. Scotiabank travel rewards credit cards offer incredible flexibility, by allowing you to redeem points to cover travel which has already been booked through any travel service or website; that means you’re never restricted by airlines or blackout dates. If that sounds like what you’re looking for from a rewards credit card, here’s everything you need to know about how to earn and redeem Scotia Rewards points.

How to Earn Scotia Rewards Points

Scotiabank has several credit cards that are affiliated with their Scotia Rewards program[1]. Depending on which card you use, you’ll earn a number of points per $1 spent on your card. For example, with the Scotiabank Gold American Express you earn 4 points for every $1 spent at eligible gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants and entertainment venues. On all other purchases, you earn 1 point for every $1 spent. The credit card has a $99 annual fee but is waived for the first year and comes with a sign-up bonus of 30,000 Scotia Rewards points ($300 value).

How to Redeem Scotia Rewards Points

One of the unique features of the Scotia Rewards program is that you’re not restricted to booking travel with specific airlines or hotels. Instead, you can make a travel purchase on your own, wait for it to show up on your online account and then apply your points towards the purchase. After you apply your Scotia Rewards points to a purchase, your account will be credited for the full cost in 7-10 days.

To redeem your Scotia Rewards points, login to the Scotia Rewards centre. From there, select “Apply Points to Travel” to see all your eligible travel purchases. Any flights, hotels, car rentals, etc. paid for with your credit card will be displayed. Some bus and train charges are also eligible and may be displayed.

When you select a travel purchase, you will have the option of applying points to cover the cost at a rate of $1 = 100 points. If you don’t have enough points, you can apply as many points as you have and then pay the remainder with your credit card. The only restriction is that the minimum you can redeem for a travel purchase is 5,000 points ($50). Once you use your points to cover a travel purchase, your account will be credited to reflect the redemption.

The Value of Scotia Rewards Points

The top card in the Scotia Rewards program is the Scotiabank Gold American Express. For that reason, we’ll use it to demonstrate the value of Scotia Rewards points.

With the Scotiabank Gold American Express, you receive 4 points for every $1 spent on gas and groceries, and 1 point for every $1 spent on all other purchases. When you redeem the points for travel, you do so at a rate of $1 = 100 points, making each point worth $0.01. However, because you earn more than 1 point per $1 spent on some purchases, you’ll receive a greater value from this program.

Example: Scotiabank Gold American Express

Let’s say your family’s typical spending on the card each year is:


How many Scotia Rewards points would you earn per $1 spent on the card?

Annual Points / Annual Spending = Points per $1 Spent
58,000 / $22,000 = 2.6 points per $1 spent

When you eventually book a trip with the card, each Scotia Rewards point would be worth $0.01. For example, you’d have to redeem 60,000 Scotia Rewards points to pay for a $600 flight ($600/$0.01). However, since you earned 2.6 points per $1 spent, each $1 spent rewards you back with $0.026. So, when you redeem points for the flight, you would technically get a 2.6% return. No wonder the Scotiabank Gold American Express is considered one of the best credit cards in Canada.

[1] The ScotiaGold Passport Visa is not affiliated with the Scotia Rewards program. Recommends:

Scotiabank Gold American Express Card


  • Earn up to four points per dollar
  • 30,000 Scotia Rewards bonus points
  • Receive discounts and other special offers on hotels, airfare, car rentals, cruises and vacation packages

If you want to earn Scotia Rewards points for every $1 you spend, here are more details on the Scotiabank Gold American Express Card:

  • Get a sign-up bonus of 30,000 points ($300 value) with your first $750 in net purchases in first three months
  • Earn 4 points per $1 spent on groceries, gas, restaurants and entertainment.
  • Earn 1 point per $1 spent on everything else.
  • Redeem points to cover cost of any travel-related expense paid for with card.
  • No airline restrictions or blackout dates on flights.
  • Receive discounts and other special offers on hotels, airfare, car rentals, cruises and vacation packages.
  • Get complimentary concierge services, and access to priority pass lounges worldwide.
  • $99 annual fee – free first year.
  • Annual interest rate 19.99% on purchases and 21.99% on cash advances.