Do you make quite a bit of money, but also travel a lot and wish you had a credit card that would be useful to you at these times? We may have just the card for you. Keep reading for a full Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card review to help you decide if this card is right for you.
Sign up now for this great travel card that comes with all kinds of insurance and amenities, and best of all, charges no foreign exchange fees.
|You Are Interested If||You have enough income to travel around the world and a card that will make this experience more enjoyable and affordable.|
|Brief Description||As you’ll see in this Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card review, this card offers generous reward bonus categories and plenty of extras catering specifically to travelers, but may be a little too demanding for most Canadians in terms of spending incentives.|
|Main Requirements||This is a premium card that you can only get if you make at least $60,000 each year and have better credit than most.|
|Card Type||This is a travel card, although the points you earn can be used for standard rewards or movie admissions if you choose to do so.|
Fees and Interest
|Purchase Interest Rate||Virtually all purchases are charged interest at a rate of 19.99% per year.|
|Cash Advance||You can get cash money extended to you for a 22.99% yearly interest charge on the amount.|
|Balance Transfer||You’ll pay a standard 22.99% in interest on balance transfers.|
|Income Requirements||If you’re applying alone, you’ll need to make at least $60,000 in a single year to qualify.|
|Household Income Requirements||If you’re applying with a partner, you may qualify if your combined income reaches a total of $100,000 per year.|
|Annual Fee||You will be charged a $139 annual fee for this card, although you can obtain a single extra card for a second cardholder free of charge.|
|Welcome Bonus||If you spend at least $1,000 in your first 3 months with this card, you’ll get 25,000 bonus reward points to start you off.|
|How To Earn Points||Most purchases will earn points at a 1:1 ratio of points-to-dollars, but money spent on things like dining purchases, groceries, entertainment and transit services will get you 2 reward points per dollar spent.|
|Benefits||The Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card is geared toward frequent travelers, so it includes all kinds of perks to make travel more enjoyable. You’ll get extra insurance, airport lounge access, and many other things – most notably, though, this card does not charge any foreign exchange fees on purchases made in other currencies.|
About Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite Card
Let’s begin our Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card review by examining the main things this card has to offer. The most obviously important, of course, is the reward system it uses. With this card, you’ll get 2 Scotia Rewards points for each dollar spent on things like groceries, entertainment, restaurant meals, and even transit expenses. That last inclusion is particularly uncommon and hints that Scotiabank may expect this card to be held primarily by city-dwellers. Nevertheless, if you frequently use public transit or even take a taxi once in a while, you can earn more points for those purchases too. All other purchases charged to this card will get you 1 reward point for every dollar you spend. This will already allow you to accrue a sizable number of points, but believe it or not, you can get even more bonus points under certain conditions. Virtually all new cardholders will receive the 25,000 introductory bonus points that are currently being offered. On top of that, if you hit $40,000 in spending on your card in a single calendar year, you’ll get an additional 10,000 reward points on top of the ones you’ve already built up. This bonus is always active no matter how long you have had your card, providing a nice ongoing incentive to use it frequently even after that introductory bonus period runs out.
As part of our Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card review, we want to show you how many points you can potentially earn with this card to help you determine if it is right for you. With at least $60,000 a year to spend (minus taxes, of course), you’ll likely have a fair amount of money left over for small luxuries, but a good portion of your income will be going to necessities. This leaves you in an ideal position to take advantage of this card’s bonus categories. For instance, let’s say your budget allows for even just $1,000 in non-rent or mortgage expenses each month – most people at the income level this card requires will spend more than this, but going low like this will illustrate how easy it will be to get rewards. You will easily hit the $1,000 requirement for the bonus offer with these spending patterns, so we can count on the 25,000 welcome points right away. If you were to spend $400 of that on groceries, another $100 on eating out, another $100 on a bus pass and a further $100 on something like movies or concert tickets, you would be spending $700 of that on bonus-eligible purchases. That’s 1400 points per month, plus another 300 for the regular purchases.
Given the focus of the card, it makes sense that these points are primarily intended to be used for travel rewards. You can use them to pay for any trips you take (in full or in part, it’s up to you), just as you’d expect. If you happen to want the option to occasionally choose another kind of reward, though, you should know that you can also redeem these points for various items from the Scotia Rewards catalogue. You can even trade in your points for the Scene points used in Scotiabank’s other popular reward program, or change any Scene points you have into Scotia rewards points instead – conversion rates between the two programs vary, but you can investigate this further through the same catalogue that covers all the other rewards.
Like any good Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card review, we’ll also be covering the extra benefits that come with the card. With this card, you’ll automatically gain membership in several helpful travel perk programs, including Priority Pass and Avis Preferred Plus. You’ll also be able to enjoy complimentary airport lounge passes six times each year and Visa Infinite concierge service at any time. It even includes hotel and motel burglary insurance, a less common offering with these types of cards but one which may come in very handy in a pinch. All of these things enable and encourage worry-free travel, which is great if you find yourself on many business or leisure trips each year.
Cardholders gain access to the exclusive Scotia Rewards Travel Service, an extra division of the company that is fully staffed with full ranks of friendly and well-trained staff ready to help you with the plans for your next trip. On top of making this easier for you, using this service may also help you secure better rates on things like flights and accommodations. However, you should know that your Scotia Rewards points can be used to cover the cost of any travel purchases regardless of what provider you choose to purchase them from – it’s simply an easier process when you do it through the company’s own travel agency. However, the most coveted perk of them all is that Scotiabank will waive any foreign exchange fees on purchases you make with this card. For travellers who will often spend thousands of dollars in places outside of Canada, the savings this can produce can be quite substantial, and few credit cards offer this feature now.
The Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite offers unusual bonus categories that will fit perfectly into many people’s existing lifestyles, offering great reward point value over time. The thing that really sets this card apart, though, is the total lack of foreign exchange charges on any purchases. You can get great rewards from many other companies, but this perk is hard to find in the modern Canadian credit landscape and could save you significant amounts of cash money over the course of a year. If you travel often, as most cardholders will, you’ll probably more than make up the annual fee in savings alone, leaving all the rewards as pure profit for you. We want to be sure to highlight this in our Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card review because we know that for many applicants, this will be the sole deciding factor of this card’s worth.
It’s not all good news, however – we don’t want to leave the downsides out of our Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card review. This card does cost $139 a year, and beyond that, you’ll need to have a rather high income to even be considered. However, the requirements are nowhere near outrageous and many middle- and upper middle-class Canadians will at least be eligible to apply. If they are approved, they’ll be able to maximize their point yield mostly by sticking to a pretty normal mix of necessity and luxury spending, so it isn’t exactly an elitist card in that sense.
Scotiabank, or the Bank of Nova Scotia, proudly calls themselves ‘Canada’s most international bank,’ a title that is very fitting for the provider of a such a travel-focused card. Since 1832, they have served not only millions of Canadians, but also a multitude of customers in Europe, Asia, Latin America and the Carribean. They provide 24/7 customer service by telephone and email, as well as some limited support via Twitter during all but the very earliest morning hours, so you’ll always be able to get in contact with them if you need to.
What We Think
We’ve covered a lot of good and bad points in this Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card review, but it all comes down to one question: is this card worth having? The answer depends on how much money you have, how you spend it, and what you’re likely to do with the rewards you want to earn. This is the case with most cards, but even more so with this one due to the unique way in which is straddles the line between a middle-class card and a top-tier one. Most credit cards target demographics which are much more clear-cut, making it easier to issue a pronouncement about them.
Even with these highly accommodating bonus categories, however, you’ll still need to spend quite a lot to make full use of it – something which most Canadians will likely struggle to do. The $40,000 charge threshold required to receive the yearly 10,000 point bonus is more than many people make in an entire year, even if you include the money they will eventually have to pay in taxes! In fact, if you qualify for this card at the very lowest income level possible, that will account for a full two-thirds of your total income. There is no firm requirement to hit this spending mark and customers are free to hold and use this card without ever coming close to that amount of spending, but when a card offers such a nice extra feature, it’s a shame not to be able to take advantage of it.
Our final conclusion for this Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card review is that this is an above-average card, but also one that is only truly suited for those with considerable financial means. If you’re not a higher earner, you won’t get nearly as much out of it as you could be, and we hesitate to recommend it in that situation. Otherwise, go ahead!