Best BMO Credit Cards in Canada for 2021

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by Enoch Omololu

Updated

Advertiser Disclosure

The Bank of Montreal (BMO) is well represented when it comes to highlighting good options in the various credit card categories people search for in Canada.

Whether you need a no-fee card or are looking to earn cash back, travel rewards, or Air Miles, there is a BMO credit card that can meet your needs.

For a quick background on the bank, BMO was founded in 1817 and is one of the big five banks in Canada with more than 900 branches across the country.

Read on to learn about the best BMO credit cards for 2021.

Best BMO Credit Cards at a Glance

BMO Credit CardsAnnual FeeBest ForWelcome Bonus
BMO Cash Back Mastercard$0Students; Groceries5% cashback in first 3 months ($100 value)
BMO World Elite Mastercard$150; waived in the first yearTravel Rewards30,000 points
BMO Air Miles World Elite Mastercard$120; waived in the first yearAir Miles2,000 Air Miles
BMO Cash Back World Elite Mastercard$120; waived in the first yearCash Back10% cash back in first 3 months ($200 value)
BMO Preferred Rate Mastercard$20; waived in the first yearLow Interest3.99% balance transfer for 9 months

Best BMO No-Fee Credit Card

BMO CashBack Mastercard

This entry-level BMO credit card is great for students and those who want to earn rewards without paying an annual fee.

You earn a standard 3% cash back on grocery purchases, 1% on recurring bill payments, and 0.50% on everything else.

The 3% and 1% rewards rate is applicable to a maximum of $500 spent in those categories each month (per statement cycle period).

New cardholders get a welcome 5% cash back on purchases in their first 3 months (up to $100) and can also take advantage of a 1.99% balance transfer promo rate for 9 months (a 1% transfer fee applies).

  • Annual fee: $0
  • Earn rate: 3% on groceries; 1% on recurring bills; 0.5% on everything else
  • Income eligibility: N/A
  • Best for: No annual fees; students
  • Welcome offer: 5% cash back on up to $2,000 in spending in the first three months ($100 value)
  • Interest rate: 19.99% purchases; 22.99% cash advances

In addition, you enjoy up to a 25% discount on car rentals at participating National Car Rental and Alamo Rent A Car, plus purchase protection and extended warranty.

You can learn more about the card in this BMO Cash Back Mastercard review.

BMO Cashback Mastercard

Click to Apply.

Best BMO Credit Card for Travel

BMO World Elite Mastercard

Looking for an excellent travel credit card? The BMO World Elite Mastercard is worth checking out. To start, you get 30,000 welcome points when you spend $3,000 in your first three months.

The standard rewards rate for the card is 3 points for every $1 spent on travel, dining, and entertainment; and 2 points per $1 spent on everything else.

The BMO World Elite has a $150 annual fee that is waived in the first year.

  • Annual fee: $150; waived in the first year
  • Earn rate: Up to 2.1%
  • Best for: Travel rewards and insurance coverage
  • Welcome bonus: 30,000 points
  • Interest rate: 19.99% purchases and 22.99% cash advances
  • VIP perk: Airport lounge access with 4 complimentary passes; comprehensive travel insurance

This card offers a long line of travel insurance benefits that includes emergency medical protection up to $2 million; trip cancellation, baggage delay, personal effects, rental car accident, purchase protection, extended warranty, and more.

Lastly, you enjoy complimentary membership in Mastercard Airport Experiences provided by Loungekey with four free annual passes.

You can get more details in this BMO World Elite Mastercard review.

BMO World Elite Mastercard

Click to Apply.

Best BMO Cash Back Credit Card

BMO Cash Back World Elite Mastercard

The BMO Cash Back World Elite Mastercard offers a flat-rate cash back rate of 1.50% on all purchases and you can redeem the cash back whenever you want, starting at $50. 

The card costs $120 per year, however, this fee is waived in the first year. 

New cardholders enjoy 10% cash back on the first $2,000 they spend on the card and can earn up to $200 in the first three months.

  • Annual fee: $120; waived in the first year
  • Earn rate: 1.50% cash back on all credit card purchases
  • Income eligibility: $80,000
  • Best for: Cash back rewards
  • Welcome offer: 10% cash back on up to $2,000 in spending in the first three months ($200 value)
  • Interest rate: 19.99% purchases; 22.99% cash advances
  • VIP perk: Free roadside assistance and comprehensive travel insurance

This card offers out-of-province/out-of-country emergency medical protection up to $2 million for 8 days, free roadside assistance, and free membership in Mastercard Airport Experiences provided by LoungeKey.

You also get purchase protection and extended warranty.

Learn more about the BMO Cash Back World Elite in this review.

BMO CashBack World Elite Mastercard

Click to Apply.

Best BMO Air Miles Credit Card

BMO Air Miles World Elite Mastercard

This BMO Air Miles card is easily one of the best Air Miles credit cards in Canada.

It starts new cardholders off with 2,000 Air Miles Bonus Miles when they spend $3,000 in the first three months and also waives the $120 annual fee for the first year.

You earn 1 Mile per $10 in purchases and can double the points when you shop at participating Air Miles partners.

  • Annual fee: $120; waived in the first year
  • Earn rate: 1 Mile per $10 spent on all purchases
  • Income eligibility: $80,000
  • Best for: Air Miles
  • Welcome bonus: 2,000 Air Miles when you spend $3,000 in the first three months
  • Interest rate: 19.99% purchases; 22.99% cash advances
  • VIP perks: VIP airport lounge access via membership in Mastercard Airport Experiences provided by LoungeKey (2 free passes per year); comprehensive travel insurance

The Air Miles you earn can easily be redeemed for travel or merchandise.

The BMO Air Miles World Elite also offers comprehensive travel insurance benefits including emergency medical protection up to $2 million for up to 15 days.

Click to Apply.

Best BMO Low-Interest Credit Card

BMO Preferred Mastercard

Looking for a low-interest credit card to save on interest fees when you carry a balance? The BMO Preferred Rate Card is a great option.

It offers a low standard purchase interest rate of 12.99% and 12.99% on cash advances as well.

It also functions well for balance transfers if that’s what you need and offers a 3.99% rate on balance transfers for 9 months. A 1% transfer fee applies.

While it has a $20 annual fee, it is waived in the first year.

  • Annual fee: $20; waived in the first year
  • Earn rate: N/A
  • Income eligibility: N/A
  • Best for: Low-interest rates
  • Welcome offer: 3.99% balance transfer for 9 months

While you won’t earn rewards for spending on this card, the low purchase APR can result in a lot of savings if you typically carry a balance.

Lastly, the BMO Preferred offers purchase protection and extended warranty.

Learn more about the card in this BMO Preferred Rate Mastercard review.

BMO Preferred Rate Mastercard

Click to Apply.

Final Thoughts

These BMO credit cards all come with the default advantage of being Mastercards and having wide acceptability worldwide.

BMO rewards are easy to redeem with options including travel, vacation packages, merchandise, rental cards, gift cards, investments, and statement credits.

For the cash back rewards cards, you can simply deposit the money earned into your BMO chequing, savings, or Investorline account; or use it to pay off your credit card balance.

For Air Miles, you can choose Cash Miles (merchandise) or Dream Miles (travel) depending on your preference.

Cardholders who have a BMO chequing account can waive the annual fee for the primary user of the premium credit card every year. 

Related Reading

Best Credit Offers this month

One of the best no-fee credit cards in Canada.

Get 2% unlimited cash back on up to 3 purchase categories.

Get 0.5% unlimited cash back on all other purchases.

1.95% balance transfer offer for 6 months.

Free prepaid reloadable Visa card.

Access to a portion of your paycheque 3 days early.

Free budgeting app with automatic savings features.

Credit building available with a subscription.

1.20% savings interest on every dollar balance.*

Get the best rates from multiple lenders.

Borrow up to $50,000 regardless of your credit score.

Pre-approvals offered in as fast as 5 minutes.

Low interest rates starting at 9.9% (or 1.90% for auto loans).

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Author

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Enoch Omololu

Enoch Omololu is a personal finance expert and a veterinarian. He has a master’s degree in Finance and Investment Management from the University of Aberdeen Business School (Scotland) and has completed several courses and certificates in finance, including the Canadian Securities Course. He also has an MSc. in Agricultural Economics from the University of Manitoba and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Ibadan. Enoch has a passion for helping others win with their personal finances and has been writing about money matters for over a decade. His writing has been featured or quoted in the Toronto Star, The Globe and Mail, MSN Money, Financial Post, Winnipeg Free Press, CPA Canada, Credit Canada, Wealthsimple, and many other personal finance publications.

His top investment tools include Wealthsimple and Questrade. He earns cash back on purchases using KOHO, monitors his credit score for free using Borrowell, and earns interest on savings through EQ Bank.

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