Scotia Momentum VISA® Card Offers 2% Cash Back – But Is It Worth It?

Scotia Launches New Scotia Momentum VISA® Card

First Published Date : August 31, 2009

Scotia Bank recently introduces a new VISA® card called Scotia Momentum VISA® card. Scotia Momentum card holders will be able to get cash back on purchases – whenever an eligible transaction is made.

Scotia Momentum VISA® card offers 2% cash back on eligible purchases. These eligible merchants are classified as groceries, gas stations, supermarkets, pharmacies, recurring bill payments, and so on by VISA®. Only the first $25,000 spent annually will attract 2% cash back. In addition, Scotia Momentum VISA® card offers 1% cash back once you exceed your $25,000 limit and on other eligible purchases. Cash back is not given for transactions such as cash advances, annual card fees, interest charges, etc.

Scotia is offering a special bonus for all purchases on first three statements. Purchases normally attracting 1% cash back will earn 2% during this promotion. This offer expires on October 31, 2009. All these incentives do not sound bad, after all, who does not want free money? However, if you do some calculations, you will be able to see the full picture.

Visit Scotibank’s website to find out more about eligible purchases and special bonus program

Let’s Dissect Scotia Momentum VISA® Card

You need to spend at least $1,950 to get back the annual fee ($39) you will pay
And then, you can pocket the 2% you will be making on eligible purchases (after spending your first $1,950)
Now, let’s say, you spend $3,600 annually on eligible purchases each year (that’s $300 a month)
So, the money you will be making each year = $3,600 – $1,950 = $1,650 X 2% = $33

Not bad, huh? Wait, not so fast. If you use one of the credit cards I mentioned in this post –
ADJ Picks Canada’s Best Credit Cards, you will be able to beat Momentum VISA® card by getting 1% cash back on your full $3,600 – and that works out to be $36 cash back.
However, if you spend more than approximately $300 per month on eligible transactions, Scotia Momentum VISA® card is a good bet. Here are the calculations assuming you spend $5000 annually (roughly $400 a month) on eligible transactions:

The money you will be making each year = $5,000 – $1,950 = $3,050 X 2% = $61
However, with a no annual fee 1% cash back card, you will be making = $5,000 X 1% = $50

My Take

My take is that the threshold for this card is about $300 per month. If you spend less than $300 each month, you can pick one of those I mentioned in the article above. If you spend more than $300, Scotia Momentum VISA® is an option you should look at; however, always do your own homework before making any financial decisions.

The Type of Credit Card Revolution Brim Financial Wants Us to Join

Brim World Elite MasterCard

I just received my Brim World Elite MasterCard after a long wait and a lot of anticipation. I applied for this card 5 months ago in February and so much has happened in between.

Some people thought Brim was a scam collecting applicants’ information, some thought they would never be able to issue any credit cards, some were even asked by Brim to provide identity verification by a doctor or a lawyer – which I have never heard before.

And then we heard Brim was blocking some of the applicants on social media for asking about the status of their applications. It is hard to believe that a credit card company would block people asking legitimate questions.

A few other things raised questions about what type of revolution Brim wants us to join. Some of them are:

- Increasing annual fee from $120 to $199 for the World Elite even before issuing credit cards.

- Unlimited & Uncapped rewards have a cap at $25,000, after which earn rates get lower.

- Using its own foreign exchange rate for foreign transactions, instead of MasterCard’s published exchange rate.

- 0% interest install plan seems to exceed usual credit card 20% interest rate when you factor in Brim’s 7% admin fee + $4.75 monthly fee per $1000 of installment financing.

After looking at all these factors, I am going to have to say: thanks, but no thanks. I don’t want to join Brim’s twisted credit card revolution. I am not going to pay a $199 annual fee for my card beyond its 1st year.

I would rather pay an annual fee for cards that offer me value year after year, such as free lounge passes, free hotel night, or anything else offsetting the annual fee.

I have a full Brim Credit Card Unboxing and Review on my YouTube channel and I hope write a review on Ahmed Dawn Dot Com as well in the future.

MBNA Rewards World Elite MasterCard Devalues

Brutal Devaluation Coming to MBNA Rewards WE

A popular MBNA cash back credit card is going through a two-fold massive devaluation. Not only is the annual fee is increasing, but also its point redemption rates are being axed by TD.

Starting September 6, 2018, MBNA Rewards WE’s annual fee will be $120, up from $89. If that’s not bad enough, MBNA is decreasing the rewards rate of return on this card from a flat 2 percent to 1.67 percent starting February 1, 2019.

Currently each 100 points generates $1 cash back, giving the card a 2 percent flat return on all purchases because it earns 2 points per dollar spent. After the devaluation to generate $1 you would require 120 points.

However, for travel redemptions only, the devaluation does not kick in because you will still get 2 percent return or $1 for in that category.

Most MBNA Rewards cardholders use this card for the cash back feature, so after devaluation MBNA will lose a lot of its clients. MBNA is aware of that because it’s lowering its minimum points requirement to redeem points from 5,000 to 1,000 from September 1, 2018 to January 31, 2019.

Even if you use this card solely for travel redemptions, you should take a hard look after the devaluation because of the annual fee increase and this card has minimal insurances.

There are other cash back credit cards available that can replace MBNA Rewards World Elite MasterCard and even provides better benefits. I have discussed these cards and the MBNA devaluation in this video: Brutal Devaluation | MBNA Rewards World Elite MasterCard |

Since TD took over MBNA, they keep slashing rewards and benefits for most of that MBNA cards one by one, even including TD’s own travel rewards cards.

Because there are better options available, always look for something better to get the most out of your credit cards.


Brim World Elite Increases Annual Fee Even Before Issuing Credit Cards

Brim World Elite MasterCard Annual Fee Goes Up

Brim credit cards created heavy buzz and brought a breath of fresh air on the Canadian credit card market because of its unheard of features such as no foreign transaction fee, Lounge Key membership, Boingo global Wi-Fi access, plus much more in Canada.

However, the anticipation and love are gone because Brim World Elite MasterCard has increased its annual fee from $120 to $199 even before reaching its customers.

There is no justification to pay $199 when you can pay $140 (Scotia Passport Visa Infinite) or $150 (BMO World Elite MasterCard) and get a lot more.

For example, Brim WE MasterCard provides only LoungeKey lounge membership, not free passes. The 2 other competitors’ credit cards provide 6 and 4 free lounge passes. Their insurance benefits are comparable or even better then Brim’s WE MasterCard. Scotia Passport Visa Infinite also provides zero foreign currency transaction fees.

The only thing the Scotia and BMO credit cards (those mentioned above) are missing is the Boingo global Wi-Fi access. However, that does not justify the higher annual fee. You can get the same Boingo global Wi-Fi access by just having the free version of Brim credit card.

I called up Brim to hear their version of the story behind the annual fee increase. The rep was friendly but failed to provide strong reasons justifying the increase. You can listen in the conversation here in the video:

What's the Justification Behind Skyrocketing Annual Fee

I don’t see any point in keeping my Brim WE MasterCard beyond its first year. I will switch to the regular free version and still will have access to free Boingo global Wi-Fi. For free lounge access, I am happy with my Scotia Passport Visa Infinite and BMO World Elite MasterCard. Also, Scotia Passport offers no zero foreign transaction fee as well.

BMO World Elite Switches from Priority Pass to LoungeKey Program

BMO World Elite Abandons Priority Pass Lounge Program

Starting August 8, 2018, BMO will replace their Priority Pass lounge access program with the LoungeKey program. Although both programs are owned by the same company, they work slightly differently.

In terms of lounge access, Priority Pass offers more lounges across the globe. Priority Pass has access to 1200 lounges at 500 airports. LoungeKey has access to 850 lounges at 400 airports.

For LoungeKey, you will not need to carry a separate membership card. The credit card that offers lounge access is enough to access a lounge. All do have to do is show your credit card. You do need to signup online to enroll prior to accessing lounges, of course.

The BMO World Elite MasterCard will still offer 4 free passes per year, so it’s not reducing the free passes it used to offer with Priority Pass.

One major difference between the Priority Pass and LoungeKey programs is that you can buy Priority Pass membership if your credit card does not provide one. However, LoungeKey does not have any membership plans to buy and is only accessible via credit card offers.

So is this change of lounge membership a devaluation? I wouldn’t say it’s a big devaluation, but it is a slight devaluation because you will have slightly less lounges to access.

Keep in mind that since the Scotia Passport Visa Infinite came out, BMO World Elite lost its luster because Scotia Passport provides more (6) lounge passes via the Priority Pass program, charges less annual fee ($150 vs $140), and also has zero foreign currency transaction fee. Read more on Scotia by clicking the link above.

Also, you can watch this article on YouTube Here:

BMO World Elite Leaves Priority Pass Lounge Program