• Annual Fee: $0
  • APR: 19.99% for purchases, 22.99% for cash advances
  • Maximum Earnings Rate: Up to 5%
  • Minimum Personal Income Required: $15,000
  • Recommended Credit Score: About 660-724

minimum price:

$0/annually

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BMO Cashback Mastercard Review: Pros and Cons [Reviewed in 2022]

BMO’s infamous cashback card has been long sought among Canadians searching for a $0 fee and easy money-back bonuses. Keep reading for an in-depth BMO Cashback Mastercard review!

BMO Cashback Mastercard Review: Pros and Cons [Reviewed in 2022]

minimum price:

$0/annually

Visit Website
  • Annual Fee: $0
  • APR: 19.99% for purchases, 22.99% for cash advances
  • Maximum Earnings Rate: Up to 5%
  • Minimum Personal Income Required: $15,000
  • Recommended Credit Score: About 660-724

Best For

Grocery rewards

Strengths

  • Generous sign-up bonus
  • Best redemption options in Canada
  • Discounts on entertainment and rentals
  • High cashback rates
  • Great warranty and purchase protection conditions
  • Free additional cardholders

Weaknesses

  • High income requirement
  • $500 monthly cap for grocery purchases and recurring bills
  • Welcome bonus capped at $100

Overview

BMO was founded in 1817, making it one of the oldest financial institutions in Canada. Headquartered in Toronto, BMO has over 46,000 employees and serves more than 12 million customers across the country.

In addition to its personal and business banking services, BMO also offers a range of credit cards that can help you earn rewards on your everyday purchases. 

One of the bank’s most popular products is the BMO Cashback Mastercard. The Cashback Mastercard is a rewards credit card, which means you’ll earn points for every purchase you make. 

These points can then be redeemed for cash back, travel, merchandise, or gift cards. You can also use your points to cover the cost of your annual fee if you choose to carry a balance on your card. 

Main Features of the BMO Cashback Mastercard

Now that we’ve given you a brief overview of BMO and their cashback card, let’s take a more detailed look at the card itself. 

Welcome Offer

The BMO Cashback Mastercard comes with a 1.99% introductory interest rate on balance transfers, as well as up to 5% cashback during your first 3 months of use. After the intro period ends, the standard interest rate applies. 

This is a great way to get started earning rewards on your everyday purchases!

Grocery Store Rewards

Groceries are a significant expense for the majority of Canadians. Luckily, you can use your BMO credit card to earn cashback on this recurring cost. 

You’ll receive 3% cashback on your grocery purchases with this no-fee card, which is one of the highest earn rates in its class in Canada. BMO’s toughest competition, the Capital One Savor Card, allows for a 4% return on groceries but comes at a higher fee of $95.

Nevertheless, it’s important to note that BMO’s earn rate is limited to the first $500 in grocery purchases each monthly statement period, after which you’ll be paid at the card’s base rate of 0.5%. This limit resets every month, so it’s possible you won’t even come close.

Selected Retail Rewards

In addition to the ongoing rewards you’ll earn on groceries, you can also benefit from additional BMO cashback rewards

For example, the bank is currently offering 1% cashback on recurring bill payments, such as monthly utilities, subscriptions, or streaming services, on top of the 0.5% cashback for non-grocery and non-recurring bills. 

No Annual Fee 

Another great feature of the BMO Cashback Mastercard is that it has no annual fee. This means you can keep the card in your wallet without having to worry about paying an additional fee every year. 

This is a rare perk for a rewards credit card, as most cards with this type of earn rate come with steeper annual fees. 

Even if you don’t spend enough to justify the annual fee on a rewards card, the BMO Cashback Mastercard could be a great option for you. 

Extended Warranty and Purchase Protection

When you make a purchase with your BMO Cashback Mastercard, you’ll automatically receive an extended warranty and purchase protection. 

This means that your purchases will be protected against theft or damage for up to 90 days from the date of purchase. 

BMO’s insurance protection provides theft and damage coverage for your belongings, regardless of location. If a covered item is stolen or damaged, it will be restored, replaced, or reimbursed at BMO’s discretion. The Purchase Protection and Extended Warranty lifetime maximum per Account is $60,000.

These are both great perks that can save you a lot of money down the road. 

Additional Perks and Benefits of the BMO Cashback Mastercard

In addition to the features we’ve already mentioned, the BMO Cashback Mastercard also comes with a few other perks and benefits. 

Accepted Worldwide

One of the great things about the BMO Cashback Mastercard is that it’s widely accepted. You can check your BMO credit card balance at multiple locations in the world, as well as use your card anywhere Mastercard is accepted. This means you’ll never have to worry about being stuck without a way to pay. 

Flexible Cashback Redemptions

BMO has the best redemption system for ease and flexibility. For instance, you don’t have to wait to redeem your points. You may use your cashback at any time of the year, and it is quite flexible. 

What’s more, you can redeem cashback in amounts as low as $1, which is more adaptable than minimums set by other companies.

Car Rental Discounts

You can get up to 25% off rental cars with National or Alamo if you rent for multiple days. It’s a nice little bonus for those who are going on vacation.

Admissions to Cirque de Soleil

For entertainment lovers, BMO provides a 15% discount for Cirque du Soleil shows touring Canada, and 20% off resident shows in Las Vegas.

BMO Cashback Mastercard for Students

Like the regular BMO Cashback Mastercard, the student version has no annual charge and a welcome offer of 5% cashback for the first three months (up to $125 in cashback). 

As for the cashback rates, you can expect 3% on groceries, 1% (to $500 per month) on recurring payments, and 0.5% (no maximum) on all other eligible purchases. What’s more, it also delivers the same flexibility for cashback redemption.

Rates and Fees

You won’t have to set aside a fortune to enjoy the benefits of the BMO Cashback Mastercard, as the card requires no annual fee. 

However, you’ll be charged some additional costs depending on the activity you’re using your card for. Let’s dive deeper into the card’s fees to see if it offers good value for money.

Annual Fee $0
Cash Advance APR 22.99% (21.99% for residents of Quebec)
Balance Transfer APR 1.99% introductory rate with 1% transfer fee
Purchase APR 19.99%
Foreign Transaction Fee 2.5%
Additional Cardholder fee $0

Another thing to bear in mind when using your BMO card is the daily withdrawal limit. Should you go over the $1,000 limit, BMO will charge you an over limit fee of $29.

Even though the earn rate isn’t as high as some of the other cards on the market, the Cashback Mastercard is still a good option for those who want to earn rewards on their everyday purchases. 

Eligibility Requirements

In order to apply for the BMO Cashback Mastercard, you must meet the following eligibility requirements: 

  • You must be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada. 
  • You must be at least 18 years old (19 in some provinces). 
  • You must have a personal annual income of at least $15,000. 
  • You must have a good credit history with no bankruptcies or delinquencies in the last seven years.

Furthermore, BMO requires an estimated credit score of 660-724 to qualify for their cashback card. 

Applying for the BMO Cashback Mastercard is easy and can be done entirely online. The application process is straightforward, and you should receive a decision within minutes. If you’re approved, you’ll receive your card in the mail within a few days.

A further point worth mentioning for BMO Mastercard users is the payment processing time. That said, you can look forward to your payment being posted to your account 

Want to Consider Other Options?

If you’re not sure if the BMO Cashback Mastercard is the one, you have a few other options to consider. Here are three other cashback credit cards that may be a better fit: 

BMO Cashback Mastercard vs. RBC Cashback Mastercard 

The RBC Cashback Mastercard is a great option for those who are looking for a card with no annual fee and a decent earn rate. You’ll earn up to 2% cashback on all of your purchases, which is lower than the BMO Cashback Mastercard’s base earn rate. 

However, the RBC Cashback Mastercard has a few other perks that may make it a better option for you. For instance, During the first three months of using the card, you’ll receive a $0 delivery fee from DoorDash and a free DashPass subscription.

BMO Cashback Mastercard vs. Tangerine World Mastercard 

The Tangerine World Mastercard caters to users who prefer a flexible rewards program and a $0 annual fee. Similar to the BMO Cashback Mastercard, Tangerine offers 3% cashback on grocery purchases, 1% cashback on recurring bill payments, and 0.5% cashback on all other purchases after the bonus period ends.

One feature that makes the Tangerine World Mastercard stand out from the crowd is the possibility to connect to Boingo Wi-Fi. Namely, the card comes with 1 million Wi-Fi hotspots around the world, and you can connect to any hotspot named Boingo Wi-Fi at no cost. 

BMO Cashback Mastercard vs. Capital One Savor

While Capital One Savor offers solid cashback rates, it will cost you $95 annually.  With this card, you’ll earn 4% cashback on dining and groceries, while additional purchases will get you 1% cashback.

The most notable feature of the Capital One Savor is the option to generate a virtual card number that you can delete at your convenience. Since you won’t reveal your real card number, it will be tougher for hackers to get access to your credit card information.

Final Verdict

The BMO Cashback Mastercard is optimal for Canadians who are looking for a rewards card with no annual fee. With this card, you’ll earn cashback on every purchase, and you can use your points to cover the cost of your annual fee if you choose to carry a balance on your card. 

Moreover, we’ve pointed out plenty of additional useful features in our BMO Cashback Mastercard review. So, whether you’re looking for a rewards card to help offset the cost of groceries or you’re looking for a way to save on travel expenses, this card is worth the shot.

FAQ

How to pay a credit card bill for BMO?

Paying your BMO credit card bill is easy and can be done in a few different ways. You can choose to pay online, by mail, or over the phone. 

How does cashback work?

Basically, when you make a purchase with your credit card, the credit card company pays the vendor for you. Then, once a month, they send you a bill that includes the total amount of all the purchases you made during the month, as well as a percentage of that total that they’ll give back to you.

ABOUT AUTHOR

With an early start in journalism and years of work as a technical translator, Marija felt it was natural to blend the two. Passionate about news and research, she enjoys sifting through the data, researching new currents and the constant changes in our technologically and financially driven lives, as well as presenting the stats and facts to the readers so you don’t have to dig deep on your own.