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The Brim World Elite Mastercard is a premium credit card issued by Brim Financial, a Canadian fintech company that aims to change how credit card rewards work.

While no-foreign transaction credit card options are few and far between in Canada, all three credit cards offered by Brim offer this perk, including the Brim Mastercard which is a no-fee card.

Who is Brim Financial?

Brim Financial is a non-bank credit card issuer founded in Canada in 2015 by Rasha Katabi. As of this writing, the company has three credit cards in circulation including the:

  • Brim Mastercard
  • Brim World Mastercard, and 
  • Brim World Elite Mastercard

Brim Financial has a unique mobile app that is available on the App Store and Google Play. Using the app, cardholders can access multiple mobile wallets including Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay, FitBit, and even Garmin Pay.

Brim World Elite Mastercard – At a Glance

  • $199 annual fee; waived in the first year
  • 2 points per $1 spent base rewards
  • 0% foreign transaction fees
  • Access to unlimited Brim Open Rewards
  • Earn up to $500 in Brim points when you first join
  • Free Global Wi-Fi
  • Mobile device insurance
  • Comprehensive travel insurance and benefits including travel accident insurance and emergency medical insurance
  • Complimentary LoungeKey membership with access to VIP airport lounge access
  • Purchase protection and extended warranty
  • Event ticket protector insurance
  • Versatile mobile app with budgeting capabilities
  • Access to installment payments on all purchases exceeding $500

Brim World Elite Mastercard Benefits

The Brim World Elite Mastercard is a premium card with lots of features and benefits to go along with its hefty $199 annual fee.

Brim Financial No Foreign Transaction Fee

All three Brim Mastercards waive the foreign transaction fee that is easily a 2.5% add-on to all your foreign currency purchases.

The Brim World Elite saves you the surcharge and your transactions are converted using the exchange rate set by Mastercard.

Brim World Elite Base Rewards

You earn at a rate of 2 points per $1 spent for a 2% cash back rate. There is a cap of $25,000 for the 2% earn rate. After exceeding this threshold, your cash back rate falls to 1%.

Brim points are easy to redeem and there are no restrictions on what you can spend your cash back on – groceries, travel, cash back to pay off your statement balance, and more.

The points are convertible at a rate of 1 point = $0.01 (1 cent) and you can cash out starting at $1 or 100 points.

Brim Open Rewards

In addition to the base rewards, cardholders get access to the Brim Open Rewards program which is a loyalty platform to earn extra points on everyday purchases.

You can earn points at an accelerated rate from participating retailers and brands that are featured on the Brim marketplace.

Cash back points earned via Brim Open Rewards have no cap or limit and you also enjoy redemption multipliers with some merchants. For example, 1 point can increase in value to 3 cents, compared to the regular 1:1 conversion rate.

New members get an opportunity to earn $500 or more in first-time bonus points via inCard offers.

Brim World Elite Mastercard Free Global Wi-Fi

The Brim World Elite Mastercard offers access to over 1 million free Boingo Wi-Fi hotspots around the world. These hotspots are available in airports, hotels, airplanes, restaurants, cafes and can come in handy if you do a lot of travelling.

The free Boingo Global Wi-Fi is worth $39 USD per month.

Brim World Elite Mastercard Lounge Access

This card comes with a complimentary membership in Mastercard Airport Experiences provided by LoungeKey and provides access to over 1,000 airport lounges worldwide.

No free passes are included in this offer, however, you save on the annual membership fee. One credit card option that offer multiple free VIP airport lounge passes every year is the Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite.

Brim World Elite Mastercard Travel Insurance

The travel insurance coverage provided with this card is comprehensive. You get common carrier accident insurance and Out-of-Province emergency travel medical insurance of up to $5 million for up to 15 days (under 65) or 3 days (65 years) .

In addition, you also enjoy flight delay, baggage delay, lost or stolen baggage, hotel/motel burglary, trip cancellation, and trip interruption.

The comprehensive rental car coverage benefits include car rental damage insurance, car rental accidental death and dismemberment insurance, and coverage for car rental personal effects that get damaged or stolen.

Other Insurance Benefits

This card also provides the following insurance coverage:

  • Extended warranty that doubles the manufacturers’ warranty up to one extra year
  • Event ticket protector insurance with reimbursement for tickets charged to your card up to $1,000 if you are unable to attend for an eligible reason
  • Mobile device insurance with coverage up to $1,000 for the damage, loss or theft of a smartphone or tablet

Brim World Elite Mastercard Insallment Pay

Brim’s installment pay feature is available with all their cards and can be applied to purchases of $500 or more. Installment payments can be setup for 12-24 months and you can pay off the balance at any time.

Note that while 0% interest is charged on installments, you will pay a 7% fixed installment fee and a monthly processing fee of 0.475% of the original purchase price. Simply put, the installment fees can easily add up to become really expensive.

Other Brim Financial Benefits

The Brim app and web portal offer a budgeting tool you can use to track your purchases, set your spending limits, and get alerts when you exceed the limits. If you added a family card for supplementary users, you can set spending limits for them as well.

Cardholders enjoy the wide acceptability of a Mastercard plus complimentary travel assistance.

Lastly, when your friends sign up for a Brim Mastercard using your referral code or link, you receive 2,000 points ($20) per referral.

Downsides

The $199 annual fee tag for the Brim World Elite Mastercard is huge. While the fee is waived in the first year, it applies in subsequent years and may leave a bitter taste in your mouth if you are not fully utilizing the benefits of the card that offsets its cost. Additional cards for family members each attract a $50 fee.

There is a $25,000 annual limit on the regular 2% earn rate. After you exceed this amount in purchases, your earn rate falls to 1%.

Finally, Brim Financial is a non-bank credit card issuer and is relatively new on the credit card scene.

Brim World Elite Mastercard vs. Rogers World Elite Mastercard

The no-annual-fee Rogers World Elite Mastercard was featured as a bonus credit card on my list of the best no-FX fee cards in Canada.

This Rogers Bank credit card offered 4% unlimited cash back on purchases made in a foreign currency, 2% cash back on purchases of Rogers products and services, and 1.75% cash back on all other purchases.

This is about to change. Starting on June 2, 2020, the cash back benefits are being dialled back and will now be:

  • 3% cash back on only U.S. dollar purchases for a 0.50% return after factoring in the 2.5% FX conversion fees
  • 1.5% in cash back on all other purchases (down from 2% on Rogers products and 1.75% on everything else)

Not only that, but you will now also need to spend at least $15,000 every year to remain eligible for the card.

While this is a significant downgrade in benefits, Rogers World Elite cardholders will continue to enjoy no annual fees, comprehensive travel insurance benefits, and new access to free Boingo Global Wi-Fi.

Bottomline: The Rogers World Elite Card remains somewhat competitive, just not at the level it was at previously.

For a no-fee card alternative, you could choose the basic Brim Mastercard, however, you would miss out on basic travel insurance benefits.

Alternative cards to consider are:

No-Fee Cards

1. Home Trust Preferred Visa: This card has no annual fees and offers the coveted 0% foreign exchange fees. In addition, you earn 1% cash back on all eligible purchases and enjoy roadside assistance and rental car insurance.

Learn more in this Home Trust Preferred Visa review.

2. Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card: Tangerine’s flagship cash back credit card has no annual fee and offers 2% unlimited cash back on purchases in up to three popular categories of your choice; and 0.5% on everything else.

In addition, you get access to a low-risk balance transfer rate, purchase protection, and extended warranty. Get more details in this Tangerine credit card review.

3. Tangerine World Mastercard: Similar to Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card, the Tangerine World Mastercard has no annual fees. However, you will need an income of at least $60,000 to be eligible.

In addition to earning 2% unlimited cash back on these categories of spending, this card also offers rental car insurance, mobile device insurance, complimentary membership in Mastercard Airport Experiences provided by LoungeKey, extended warranty, purchase protection, and access to free Boingo Global Wi-Fi.

Learn more about this card in this review of the Tangerine World Mastercard.

Premium Credit Card Options

1. Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite: Comes with a plethora of premium benefits including no foreign transaction fees, $300 value sign-up bonus, complimentary Priority Pass membership with 6 free visits per year (worth $379), comprehensive travel insurance benefits, up to 2% earn rate, and more.

This card has a $139 annual fee and you can get more details about its benefits in this Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite review.

2. Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite:  This card is one of the best cash back credit cards in Canada and its $120 annual fee is waived in the first year. It offers up to 4% regular cash back plus comprehensive travel insurance benefits, mobile device insurance, and more.

The minimum income requirement for the card is $60,000 and you can learn more about it in this Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite review.