Canada's Top 5 Credit Cards for International Travellers

By Remitbee - Mar 27, 2024

International travel is back on the menu after nosediving during the pandemic lockdowns of 2019-20. According to the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the figures for international tourism climbed to 88% of pre-pandemic levels by the end of 2023 as countries reopened borders and scaled back pandemic restrictions.

The reopening of international travel means Canadians can start worrying about other things, such as finding a suitable credit card for their payments abroad. The article will explore the most popular options, their features, and why they are a legitimate choice for your next international trip.

Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite Card

The Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite Card stands out as a favorite among frequent travelers for its comprehensive suite of travel benefits, including: - No foreign transaction fees - Travel insurance coverage - Concierge service - Hotel access - Six complimentary visits per year to Priority Pass lounges worldwide with its Visa Airport Companion Program membership.

Additionally, cardholders earn accelerated rewards points on travel purchases, dining, and entertainment expenses, making it an excellent choice for those who enjoy exploring the world while earning rewards.

Features: - Annual fee of CAD 150 - APR of 20.99% or 22.99%

Brim World Elite Mastercard

The Brim World Elite Mastercard is designed to cater to the needs of modern travelers. With a minimal 1.5% foreign transaction fee, this card enables seamless spending abroad. Its innovative rewards structure sets it apart, allowing cardholders to earn points on every purchase, which can be redeemed for travel, merchandise, or cash back. It also includes comprehensive travel insurance coverage and complimentary Wi-Fi access to Boingo hotspots in planes, airports, hotels, and cafes worldwide, making it a compelling choice for global adventurers.

Features: - $89 annual fee with 1 point earned for every dollar spent.

American Express Cobalt Card

The American Express Cobalt Card is renowned for its versatility and generous rewards program, with $600 worth of points on offer. While primarily marketed as a lifestyle card, its benefits extend seamlessly to international travel.

Cardholders earn Membership Rewards points on everyday purchases, including dining and travel expenses, with no foreign transaction fees. These points can be transferred to various airline and hotel loyalty programs, offering flexibility in redeeming flight rewards, hotel stays, or other travel-related expenses. The card also provides comprehensive travel insurance coverage, airport lounge access through the Priority Pass program, and exclusive American Express Invites privileges, making it a preferred choice for savvy travelers seeking value and flexibility.

Features: - Annual fee of $155.88 or $12.99 a month - Regular APR of 20.99% on purchases and 21.99% on advances

TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite Card

The TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite Card is ideal for travelers seeking to maximize airline rewards and benefits. Partnered with Aeroplan, Canada's premier airline loyalty program, this card offers generous Aeroplan Miles earning potential on eligible purchases, including accelerated miles on Air Canada purchases. Cardholders enjoy valuable travel perks such as a complimentary first-checked bag on Air Canada flights, priority check-in and boarding, and comprehensive travel insurance coverage. Additionally, the card provides access to Visa Infinite benefits, including concierge service and luxury hotel privileges, enhancing the overall travel experience for jet-setting individuals.

Features: - Annual fee of CAD 139 - Regular APR for purchases and cash advances at 20.99% and 22.99% - Eligibility requirements include: - Earning $60,000 as annual personal income or $100,000 annual household income. - Being a Canadian resident and of the age of majority in your province/territory of residence.

HSBC World Elite Mastercard

The HSBC World Elite Mastercard is an excellent choice for international travel with no foreign transaction fees and reward points earned on eligible travel purchases, dining, and entertainment.

Cardholders enjoy various travel benefits, including complimentary airport lounge access through the LoungeKey program, comprehensive travel insurance coverage for flight delays and baggage loss, and access to Mastercard's luxury hotel and dining experiences.

Features: - Annual fee of $149 - APR of 20.99% and 22.99 for advances


To conclude, you can never go wrong with most credit cards, as offerings and benefits vary by very slight margins and benefits. It all comes down to how you prioritize earning rewards, maximizing airline benefits, or enjoying luxury perks.

The five credit cards mentioned in this article cover all kinds of diverse travel preferences and needs. Select a card aligned with your travel habits and priorities and embark on your international adventure with confidence and convenience.