MBNA – Company Review
As a subsidiary of the much more well-known TD Canada Trust bank, MBNA doesn’t always get much public recognition. That’s a shame considering how solid their credit card offerings are. They are especially appealing to the 42% of Canadians who regularly carry a balance on their credit cards from month to month; their low-interest card options are some of the best around, potentially slashing the interest paid on balances by more than half as compared to the standard rates you’ll see on the market. Like any larger credit card company, they also have rewards and cash back options for less budget-conscious consumers, too. Without further ado, let’s dive into our MBNA company review.
You May Be Interested In MBNA Credit Cards If
Almost everyone can get something out of one of MBNA’s many credit cards, but if saving money is your priority, you should pay special attention to their low interest cards.
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MBNA’s Credit Card Lineup
As part of our MBNA company review, let’s look at some of the cards they have available, beginning with the low interest options.
Low Interest Cards
One of the main things we want to highlight in this MBNA company review is the affordability of this provider’s cards. The True Line MasterCard line of credit cards is where this is best demonstrated. It includes both the True Line MasterCard and the True Line Gold, which is an upgraded version of that first option. Consumers who need to minimize their credit card interest spending will find plenty of ways to accomplish that goal here.
To start with, both cards include an incredible welcome bonus that will get applicants with existing credit card debt off to a great start. Their 2018 offer for new customers allows for 0% interest on balance transfers for 6 entire months, making them unarguably the best choice for people with existing credit card debts. If you’re one of them, making the switch to one of these cards to take advantage of that completely interest-free period is a no-brainer. Both cards also offer very low rates when that period is over, with the Gold card beating out the standard version just slightly (8.99% vs. 12.99%). These rates also apply to standard purchase balances, so you’ll save quite a bit even if you have no balance transfers to do.
The next segment of our MBNA company review will cover MBNA’s set of rewards cards, headed primarily by the MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus MasterCard and the MBNA Rewards World Elite MasterCard. These are possibly the company’s most popular cards, and it’s easy to see why. Although they aren’t as exceptional as the low interest cards (you can find other similar offerings on the market fairly easily), they are still standout options that deserve consideration from any prospective applicants.
This company is very good at keeping their rewards program accessible and appealing for all types of potential customers. They update their reward catalog frequently and include all sorts of redemption options, including even the much-coveted cash option. You can also earn points surprisingly quickly, with even the simple Platinum Plus card offering double points on all purchases of gas, restaurants and groceries. The World Elite version uses this doubled rate as its base rate but also costs $120 in annual fees versus $0 for the Platinum Plus.
You can also get rewards cards for some specific retailers, including Nordstrom’s, Harley-Davidson and Melaleuca. These cards allow you to accrue points to use on that specific retailer’s merchandise alone, which usually allows you to get a better trade-in value. If you’re a very frequent shopper at a particular store, you might consider one of these cards to optimize your reward collection.
Cash Back Cards
Although their rewards cards can be made to function as cash back cards if the cardholder chooses, MBNA does provide cards to specifically serve this function as well with the MBNA Smart Cash Platinum Plus and Smart Cash World MasterCards. Either card will get you 5% cash back on every gas or grocery purchase within the first 6 months, followed by a permanent 2% rate on those same items afterward. For all other purchases, the Platinum Plus awards 0.5% cash back while the World MasterCard boosts that to 1% (although it costs $39 in annual fees).
These are fairly good overall rates, but they’re especially nice if your discretionary spending isn’t very high – the more of your money normally goes to gas and groceries, the more the generous 2% rate matters to you. Most Canadians will fall into this category purely due to the constraints of a middle-class income, so it’s nice that MBNA offers additional rewards for such common purchases. However, not all consumers will fall into this general pattern. If you know you tend to spend more on other things, the general rates on these cards might be a little too low for them to be truly worthwhile to you.
Although they may not be as well-known as a financial entity compared to some other credit card companies, MBNA is one of the more generous credit card companies out there. They take care to ensure that all of their card types have at least one option with no annual fee, and those that do charge these additional fees offer more than enough value to the right consumers to make them worthwhile. They have a credit card for just about every customer profile are still well-established enough to offer plenty of customer support if you’re in need of that.
What We Think
MBNA may not be especially well-known, but that isn’t because they don’t deserve to be. Every part of how they do business indicates that they value putting their customers first. You can find a card for everything and none of them offer sub-standard rates or bonuses. The final verdict in our MBNA company review is that this credit card provider is one of the best in terms of variability of options and perhaps the very best in terms of affordability. Depending on what you need, it’s hard to go wrong with any of these cards.