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Scotiabank Value Visa Review
3 Nov 2018

Scotiabank Value Visa | Credit Card Review

Some people get a credit card because of the rewards that card can get them. Some just need a card that won’t cost them a fortune every time they use it. We’ve prepared the Scotiabank Value Visa review to show you how this card might help you out if you often carry a balance on your credit cards.

Pay just 0.99% on balance transfers during the first 6 months of owning this card, with fair rates available after that.

 

General Information

You Are Interested If You know you tend to carry a balance on credit cards and need to find some way to avoid the high annual interest rates that most cards charge.
Brief Description The Scotiabank Value Visa credit card offers everyday low interest rates and an especially low introductory balance transfer rate for new cardholders.
Main Requirements This card doesn’t ask for too much in terms of requirements; just $12,000 in income and decent credit will suffice.

Card Details

Network Visa.
Provider Scotiabank.
Card Type This card is a low-interest credit card option with no associated reward system.

Fees and Interest

Purchase Interest Rate This card will get you a reduced interest rate of 12.99% on standard purchases.
Cash Advance Cash advances are also available at a 12.99% interest rate.
Balance Transfer Aside from the welcome offer (see the rest of our Scotiabank Value Visa review for details), balance transfers will generally be charged interest at a yearly rate of 12.99%.

Eligibility

Income Requirements You can potentially qualify for this card with just $12,000 a year in income, though it goes without saying that your chances of being approved will be better if your income is higher.
Household Income Requirements Household income is not considered for this card, so at least one member must have an income greater than $12,000 in order to apply.
Annual Fee This card costs $29 in annual fees, though like most Scotiabank cards, you can get a second one free of charge.

Rewards

Welcome Bonus Any balances transferred to this card within the first 6 months of holding it will be charged just 0.99% interest during that time, reverting to the usual 12.99% rate after the offer is over.
How To Earn Points There are no points involved with the Scotiabank Value Visa card.
Benefits With this card, you’ll receive discounts of up to 25% on any car rentals you make through Avis, as well as standard purchase protection coverage.

About Scotiabank Value Visa Card

Main Features

We’ll kick off this Scotiabank Value Visa review by giving you an in-depth overview of what this card has to offer, beginning with the interest rates that it positions as its main selling point. At a flat 12.99% applicable annual interest across the board, cardholders can save significant amounts of money on regular balances, balance transfers and cash advances, all with the same card. This basic rate keeps things simple and allows customers a lot of flexibility in terms of managing their finances – cash advances are especially prone to being charged at high interest that typically limit their usefulness, but this isn’t the case here. He drawback is that despite how nice it is to see them evenly applied, the discounts offered here are not very steep. Still, they are significant enough to make a difference.

The truly useful part of a Scotiabank Value Visa review is the breakdown of how much money you’ll save with these rates, so it’s time to get started with that. Anyone using this kind of card will typically be carrying a balance from month to month, so let’s assume that you will soon have a $500 balance on a credit card that you will be paying interest on. If you were to use a typical card for this, you would likely be paying about 20% in interest, or an additional $100 a month. This is a significant cost that it clearly makes sense to try and reduce. If you got this new card and used it to incur the balance, however, you would only be paying about $65 a month – still a high cost to incur just to service debt, but considerably more reasonable than the alternative.

Thanks to the impressive introductory offer, you’ll benefit even more if you’re trying to save on interest on a balance you’ve already accrued. If that $500 example balance was on another card first and transferred over to the Scotiabank Value Visa, it would be eligible for the promotional 0.99% interest rate for a full 6 months. This would mean that you would only be paying about $5 a month for those 6 months, or about $30 total in interest over that period. That’s less than a third of what you have paid in a single month at standard rates! If you were to use the savings this would produce to pay down that debt, you could pay it off entirely with very little effort. Pulling this off requires pro-active planning and the willpower to not redirect that saved money into some other part of your budget, but it can be an excellent way to pull yourself out from under an intimidating credit card balance.

Part of creating a Scotiabank Value Visa review is going over the extra benefits it offers, so let’s do that now. Like any credit card, this card will grant you access to purchase protection that you can use to dispute charges in cases of fraud or misuse. This particular card also comes with a discount of up to 25% on Avis car rentals, which some users might appreciate if they are frequent travelers or just enjoy trying out a different card once in a while. Cardholders can also purchase additional protections that will pay off credit card balances in case of things like illness, disability, or death, but this will cost you extra and you must enroll in it separately after having already received your card. All of these things are nice to have, but they either cost extra to access or are not hard to find among the offerings of other card providers. The car rental perk in particular will likely go unused by most people, so while it isn’t nothing, it shouldn’t be counted too heavily in this card’s favour either. There are no noteworthy benefits attached to the Scotiabank Value Visa, so if you like to see a lot of these little extras included with your credit card, this one may not be right for you.

This card does carry an annual fee of $29, an amount which also covers a second card for an extra cardholder if the customer chooses this option. This charge is less than a fifth of what the higher-end cards cost, so as annual fees go, it isn’t exorbitant. However, for a card that is aimed at struggling people to carry an annual fee at all is unusual and somewhat discouraging. While you’ll almost certainly save enough to make up that fee in no time, $29 is a lot to some people living with chronic cash flow issues and many prefer to choose cards with no up-front fees for that very reason.

One final feature we want to mention in our Scotiabank Value Visa review is that Scotiabank does also offer a no-fee version of this same card, but the additional 4% in interest that they tack on to all three charge categories makes that a much less appealing option than it could be. If you’re going to go for either of the two, this version is probably the better of them simply due to the fact that that interest premium will add up fast. This does not do much to lessen the sting of the fee in the first place, though; one way or another, this card will cost you, and the only real difference is in how this expense is levied.

Conclusions

To sum up our Scotiabank Value Visa review so far, this card is a highly accessible low-interest option with middling rates for that kind of credit product. It offers a fair level of savings even if it doesn’t reach any exceptional levels, and it’s easy enough to reach the income and credit requirements needed to apply. Customers who need an immediate solution to high interest rates and who have not yet been accepted by any other credit card companies may find this card acceptable for their purposes.

It’s true that there is a very nice welcome bonus in the mix here, but it’s important not to let that dazzle you. The introductory balance transfer offer, while good, will inevitably end, so this card shouldn’t be assessed based on that possibility alone. After that point, the card’s utility will taper off quite a bit. You’ll still be better off with this option long-term than a standard card, but that does not necessarily make the Scotiabank Value Visa the best choice for you. Be sure to evaluate this offering based primarily on the general interest rates if you’re thinking about applying for it.

About Scotiabank

Scotiabank began as the Bank of Nova Scotia back in 1832 before expanding to serve an estimated 24 million customers all over the world. They have a robust presence on both the New York and Toronto stock exchanges and are ranked number 41 among the world’s 100 biggest banks according to SNL Financial World. They have won several ‘Bank of the Year’ awards in recent years, further cementing their stellar reputation. All of these things make them a solid company to trust with your credit card needs.

What We Think

Most of the time, we try to point out something unique about each credit card we review. Most of them do have at least one distinguishing factor that makes them a great fit for a certain type of consumer. Even if that puts the card in a very small niche market, we know that it will make some people very happy to know that it is out there.

The reality of this Scotiabank Value Visa review is that this is much harder to do with this particular card than most. It will certainly produce some savings for you, just as it promises – however, this will only be the case in comparison to reward or travel cards that carry the high standard rate that very few who use them actually expect to pay. Low-rate cards like this are for people who know that they will accrue interest charges at some point or another, so their interest rates need to be rock-bottom in order for them to be worthwhile. This card is simply outclassed by many other like it. Its lowest rate is a few percentage points higher than what the competition has to offer, and on top of it all, it carries an annual fee when most similar cards are free. There are some limited benefits to it being a Visa card specifically (this network’s cards are accepted by many vendors and some may enjoy using the convenient Visa payWave system), but they aren’t anything game-changing.

One last thing we should not before concluding this Scotiabank Value Visa review is the introductory offer on balance transfers, as this is the closest the card comes to offering true value. 0.99% interest is truly low and could be extremely helpful if you are under financial stress from other debts. However, even this is beat out by some other cards’ welcome offers (0% balance transfer introductory periods are out there!), and its limited nature makes it hard to argue for it as a focal selling point anyway. Unless there’s something you really like about the idea of having a Scotiabank card specifically, we have to recommend that you look at other low-rate cards before resorting to this one.