CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite Credit Card Adding More Benefits

New CIBC Aventura Credit Card Benefits

As travel credit card competition is heating up, CIBC has refreshed its Aventura proprietary travel rewards points credit cards. These new benefits will kick in starting Oct 15, 2018. Although most of these benefits apply to both CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite and CIBC Aventura Visa Gold credit cards, the CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite is the better one as Aventura Gold is missing some insurance benefits. Both have a $120 annual fee.

New benefits that will apply:

- Priority Pass lounge membership with 4 free passes per year

- NEXUS application fee rebate every 5 years

- Enhanced trip cancellation insurance, hotel burglary insurance

- Mobile Device Insurance

I haven’t seen a feature like the NEXUS border entry application fee rebate in Canada before. You will get free lounge entrances with many other Canadian travel credit cards, but not for only a $120 annual fee. CIBC Aventura premium credit cards are definitely miles ahead, giving more benefits for only a $120 annual fee.

The CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite Credit Card could have been a perfect travel credit card, but it has its shortcomings. It does not offer zero foreign currency transaction fee (it charges 2.5% on foreign currency transactions) and its rewards structure is very poor.

The earn rate is proprietary 1.5 points at gas, grocery, and pharmacy and 1 point at everything else. So basically you are earning 1 to 1.5 percent, which is a very low earn rate.

CIBC Aventura Visa Credit Cards should not be your primary credit cards for everyday spending, but they’re definitely worth adding to your credit card portfolio for the features and benefits they’re offering.

I talk more about CIBC Aventura credit cards in the following video.

Refreshed CIBC Aventura Credit Card Benefits Dwarf Other Travel Credit Cards

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.

 

8 Free Lounge Passes from BMO World Elite MasterCard

8 Free Lounge Passes This Year

The BMO World Elite MasterCard is changing their lounge access program from Priority Pass to LoungeKey. I wrote about this here a few days ago: BMO  World Elite Switching Lounge Program. Today, I will provide you with further details on how you have 8 free lounge passes this year.

The lounge program change takes place on August 8, 2018. Until then, you will have 4 free passes from Priority Pass, which are given each year. Once the switch takes place, meaning after August 4, 2018, BMO will throw in another 4 free lounge passes for the rest of the months until December 31, 2018.

What it means that you will get these 4 extra free lounge passes from LoungeKey in addition to the free lounge passes you had from Priority Pass from Jan 1 to Aug 8. It is recommended you finish using up Priority Pass passes before August 8 because the Priority Pass program (through BMO WE MasterCard) will no longer be valid after Aug 8.

And then finish using up the other 4 LoungeKey passes by December 31. Because the LoungeKey program will reset on Jan 1 with 4 new free passes and each subsequent year, there will be 4 free passes from LoungeKey.

If you are doing a lot of traveling this year, these 8 passes will come in handy. For myself, most of these passes will be wasted because my trip to Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, and Singapore starts in late November and I will get free lounge access from my business class tickets.

BMO definitely deserves credit for giving 4 extra passes, as they had the option to not provide any free LoungeKey passes for the rest of 2018.

Watch my video on this here:  BMO World Elite MasterCard Gives 8 Free Lounge Passes This Year  and subscribe to my YouTube channel, as I bring you travel and credit card videos to enhance your travel experiences.

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