The Scotiabank Gold American Express card is one I haven’t talked about much, since generally I focus on airline/hotel miles and points. However, with the new offer, I thought it was worth mentioning.
Improved Offer for the Scotiabank Gold American Express
The new offer is a 20,000 point signup bonus, after $500 spending within the first three months of approval. You must apply by February 29, 2016. The first year annual fee is also waived. This by itself is pretty standard for the Canadian market, worth $200 in travel. For comparison, the TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite offers up to $250 in travel, but that has to be redeemed through TD’s Expedia booking site. There’s no restriction how the points have to be redeemed with the Scotiabank Card.
Earning and Burning
The card offers 1x for all purchases, and 4x points on eligible gas, groceries, entertainment, and dining purchases. The 4x spending categories are capped at $50,000 annually, plenty for most people.
I consider most airline and hotel miles worth more than 1 cent, so I would not be using this card for everyday purchases. That goes to the Starwood American Express and MBNA Alaska Airlines Mastercard for merchants that don’t accept AMEX. However, the 4% return is the best in the market. There’s no other non-Scotiabank card that comes close to matching the return. If hit the $50,000 annual limit, that’s 200,000 ($2000) in free travel. It’s also per calendar year, so if you have big purchases coming up or manufacture spend, your limit will reset at the end of next month. Otherwise, the Scotiabank Momentum Visa Infinite also offers 4% cashback up to $25,000 annually.
One thing I strongly prefer with the rewards program is that you can use your points as a travel credit on purchases on your credit card, unlike some other cards which require you to book through the reward program’s travel agency. In 99% of cases, they aren’t able to offer the perks and deals I want, so being able to book whatever you want and then redeem points for it is a big benefit. For example, this would mean that you could redeem points if you’re booking a luxury hotel rate through Virtuoso. It’d also likely mean that you’d be able to cover the costs of buying Lifemiles or American Airline miles, as those post as processed by the airline.
The Scotiabank Gold American Express also offers the following insurance benefits:
- Travel Emergency Medical Insurance (up to 25 days)
- Trip Interruption Insurance
- Flight Delay Insurance
- Baggage Delay Insurance
- Lost or Stolen Baggage Insurance
- Rental Car Collision/Loss Damage Insurance
- Purchase Security and Extended Warranty
I think the coverages offered by this card are pretty comprehensive and on par with most other premium credit cards in the market. I like that Medical Insurance covers you for up to 25 days on a trip, which is higher than even the Platinum Card that gives you only 14 days.
The Canadian Kilometers Ranking
Score for the sign-up bonus – 7/10, as the signup bonus is fairly standard.
Score for on-going earning – 9/10. The 4x return on bonus categories makes this card really stand out.
Score for benefits – 7/10. This visa has similar benefits to most other premium credit cards.
The Scotiabank Gold American Express is a decent card for certain types of credit card spend and is unbeatable in those categories. The annual fee is waived, so there isn’t a cost to try this card out for a year.
Application Link: Scotiabank Gold American Express