News & Resources

Best of Finance Winners: The Best Credit Cards and Banking Products of 2017

Oct. 23, 17
3 mins
A young couple review their finances with paperwork and a laptop

Before choosing a particular credit card or bank account or investment account, you likely do your research to find out which one will give you the best return based on your lifestyle and budget. And with so many products on the market, we here at RATESDOTCA a try to make that decision-making process as easy as possible for our customers.

The Best of Finance Awards annually recognizes some of the top products in the personal finance industry, and helps you – the customer – ultimately find your best match.

In picking the winners of the 2017 Best of Finance Awards, we compared interest rates, annual fees, and return/ reward potential to come up with a list of the best credit cards and bank accounts currently on the market. The top performers proved to help Canadians spend less and save more of their money, as well as earn more in rewards.

This year’s Best of Finance also marks the introduction of two new and exciting categories: Fan Favourite for Best Credit Card, and Best Rewards App.

In addition to the products we highly regard, this year, we wanted to give our consumers a say in which credit cards best perform for them. The winner of the Fan Favourite for Best Credit award was determined through a Facebook poll that asked customers to vote on their favourite card.

The Best Rewards App winner was selected after we internally compared finance-related mobile apps that work with the sole purpose of rewarding users with savings, coupons, points, cash back, or gift cards for completing certain tasks.

So without further ado, here are the 2017 Best of Finance winners:

The Best Credit Cards of 2017

Best Rewards Card

Best Rewards Card with No Fee

Best Card for Carrying a Balance

Best Card for Balance Transfers

Best Card for Building Credit

Best Card for Students

  • BMO SPC® CashBack® MasterCard® (DISCONTINUED)

Best Card with Travel Perks

Best Card for Groceries

Best Gas Rewards Card with No Fee

  • Shell AIR MILES®† MasterCard®* from BMO

The Best Banking Products of 2017

Best Savings Account

Best Chequing Account

  • Scotiabank Momentum Chequing Account

Best Non-Cashable GIC

  • Motive Financial (2.90%)

Best Cashable GIC

  • ICICI Bank Canada (2.05%)

Best Tax-Free Savings Accounts

  • Implicitly Financial (1.85%)

Best Rewards App

Drop

-

How We Chose the Best Credit Cards

Rewards Credit Cards

To calculate the return earned on each Canadian rewards credit card, we assumed a total monthly spend on the card of $1,149.82*, divided into the following categories:

  • The credit card balance was paid in full each month, with no interest charges accrued.
  • The consumers always use the card at partner retailers, if applicable (e.g. all gas purchased at Shell locations).
  • All points and miles were calculated into a cash value in order to compare cards like for like.
  • Spending was calculated over a 24-month period, taking into account all signup bonuses, good standing bonuses, first-purchase bonuses, annual fees and waivers.
  • Gas mileage was based on a 2016 Honda Civic.

*Source: Statistics Canada

Low Interest Credit Cards

To calculate the value of low interest credit cards, we assumed the following:

  • The cardholder is starting with the average Canadian credit card balance of $2,660, and pays the minimum payment plus $10 monthly over a 24-month period
  • The interest paid on the balance over the 24-month period is compared to that of the average credit card with a 19.99% APR.
  • Total card value takes into account all signup bonuses, good standing bonuses, first-purchase bonuses, annual fees and waivers.

Low Balance Transfer Credit Cards

To calculate the value of low balance transfer credit cards, we assumed the following:

  • The cardholder is starting with the average Canadian credit card balance of $2,660, and pays a monthly installment of $221.67 in order to pay the balance within a 12-month period
  • The cardholder has transferred the balance from another card to activate the promotion balance transfer interest rate, and has paid a 1% fee of $26.60.
  • The interest paid on the balance over the 12-month period is compared to that of the average credit card with a 19.99% APR
  • Total card value takes into account all signup bonuses, good standing bonuses, first-purchase bonuses, annual fees and waivers.

How We Chose the Best Banking Products

To determine the top performing savings accounts, chequing accounts, TFSAs and GICs, we calculated the total interest earned, based on the following:

Savings Accounts

Chequing Accounts

GICs

RATESDOTCA Team

The RATESDOTCA editorial team are experienced writers focused on sharing stories and bringing you the latest news in insurance and personal finance. Our goal is to provide Canadians with the information and resources they need to make better insurance and financial decisions.

Recent News Articles
Safety Reminders So Halloween Doesn’t Haunt You Later
The COVID-19 pandemic raises new concerns for a safe Halloween this year. Taking a few precautions to protect your home and vehicle as well as all those little trick-or-treaters can help limit your concerns to overindulging in candy.
Car Insurance Rates Rise in Alberta in the Third Quarter
The Automobile Insurance Rate Board (AIRB) in Alberta gave several insurers the green light to increase their auto rates in the third quarter of 2020. Here’s what you need to know.
5 Simple Things You Can Do to Use Your Credit Card Better
Your credit card may offer you a variety of perks that can save you money. However, it’s up to you to use them.