Tired of paying sky-high interest on your credit card balance? Here’s a way to take a break – for an entire year! The MBNA Platinum Plus MasterCard® credit card is our Best of Finance 2015 winner for best low balance transfer credit card. It offers a 0% rate for 12 months on balances moved over from another card. Cardholders don’t have to face any additional fees and it’s an easy way to help pay off outstanding debt.
How to Qualify for the Card
- You are a Canadian resident and you have a Canadian credit file
- You are the age of majority in your province or territory of residence
- You have not filed for bankruptcy in the past seven years and you do not have any seriously past due payments
What are the best credit cards in Canada? Check out our 2015 Best of Finance picks for travel, merchandise and gift card rewards!
If you are looking for a card with a sign-up bonus, point-earning potential and , you may want to check out its cousin, the MBNA Rewards MasterCard® instead. The Platinum Plus card is strictly for customers looking to pay down outstanding balances. It also has no annual fee and offers insurance.
Balance Transfer Feature: Excellent
The MBNA Platinum Plus MasterCard® offers a limited-time 12-month 0% rate on balance transfers. This means you can pay off your balance with zero balance for an entire year. Cardholders must make these balance transfers within 90 days of opening the account in order to take advantage of this rate.
Remember: a transaction fee of either $7.50 or the equivalent of one per cent of the dollar amount of each balance transfer – whichever is higher – will apply to each transaction. That fee goes up to the equivalent of 3 per cent of the dollar amount at promotional rates that MBNA may otherwise offer on the account.
Once the 12-month period is over, the balance transfer rate rises to 21.99%. In addition, the rate increases if the cardholder is late making any minimum payment, while remaining balances become subject to the applicable standard interest rate of 19.99%. If the customer’s minimum payment is late more than once within a consecutive 12-month period, the standard rates applying to the account will increase by five per cent. It’s the reverse for those who make the minimum payment every month.
An Example: The average Canadian carries a card balance of $2,627 – this according to our 2015 Credit Card Debt Denial Survey. Therefore, if the cardholder pays off this debt within the 12-month period, then he or she saves $390.88 in interest in comparison to a card with 19.99% interest. Keep in mind that the balance transfer fee would be 1% of that total – coming in at $26.27.
FYI: A card that holds a transferred balance waives the grace period for new purchases, meaning the cardholder will be charged interest at the full rate of 19.99% on anything else they buy.
Are you carrying the best credit card for your spending habits? Check out the Credit Card Rewards Calculator and find out!
Additional Benefits: Good
The MBNA Platinum Plus MasterCard® also has a few other features. This includes:
- Access to 24/7 customer service
- Around-the-clock fraud protection
- Immediate cash access at over one-million ATMs around the world
- Purchase assurance for 90 days
- One-year extended warranty benefits
The MBNA Platinum Plus MasterCard® offers many of the same services as its World Elite cousin when it comes to travel insurance, including:
- Common carrier accidental death and dismemberment benefits
- Unexpected return home in the event of death of an immediate relative
- Rental vehicle collision damage waiver benefits, and rental vehicle accidental death and dismemberment benefits
- Personal effects benefit for the duration of a vehicle rental period
- Lost document and ticket replacement
- Lost luggage assistance
- Pre-trip Information
- Legal Assistance
- Optional ($): Identity protection and balance protection
Our Final Word
This is a great card for a customer who is looking to transfer and pay off their debt within a year’s time (see our MoneyWise feature on 12 months to Debt Freedom!). Once that’s done, the card offers some good benefits and has solid travel insurance features. However, it doesn’t earn you any rewards or discounts. We think it’s a good card to add to your wallet to compliment another or other credit cards.
SPECIAL OFFER: From now until November 30, 2016, sign up for the MBNA Platinum Plus MasterCard and get a FREE $100 gift card! Choose from Starbucks, Best Buy, Amazon.ca or The Ultimate Dining Card. Click here for more information and to sign up!