Rewards Mastercard Review

**This post may contain affiliate links. I may be compensated if you use them.

Are you looking for an Rewards Mastercard review? Then no look further as this post focuses on everything you need to know about the card.

If you’ve made any purchase on Amazon Canada in the last two years, you’ve likely been prompted to apply for the card. Yes, it’ll give you an instant discount and some cash back, but is the card any good? I can tell you right now that it’s great for people who use Amazon Prime and shop at Whole Foods a lot, but compared to the best cash back credit cards in Canada and the best travel credit cards in Canada, you may be a little disappointed. Read my Rewards Mastercard review now for the full details. Rewards Mastercard benefits

What’s interesting is that this credit card gives you different benefits depending on if you’re an Amazon Prime member or not. If you’re a member, you’ll get the following with the Amazon rewards credit card:

  • No annual fee
  • $10 Amazon gift card at sign up
  • 5% back at, grocery stores and restaurants for six months after your account is opened
  • 2.5% back at, Whole Foods Market in Canada and foreign currency transactions
  • 1% back per dollar spent on all other purchases
  • Purchase assurance
  • Extended warranty
  • Common carrier insurance

For non-Amazon Prime members, your earn rate is much lower:

  • 1.5% back per dollar spent at, Whole Foods Market, physical amazon stores (no forex earn)

As you can see, the card is clearly aimed at people who do a lot of their shopping on Amazon and have an Amazon Prime membership. It’s honestly tough to beat 2.5% back on Amazon purchases since they don’t typically fall into a merchant category that gives you a higher percentage of cash back. I should note that you’re not earning cash-back, you earn Amazon Rewards but since it takes 2,000 Amazon Rewards to claim a $20 gift card, the program is similar to cash back.

That said, you could technically earn up to 5% in points back on your Amazon purchases if you used your American Express Cobalt Card. You’d have to purchase Amazon gift cards at grocery stores where you earn 5 Membership Rewards points per $1 spent which may seem like a lot of hassle, but those points can add up. American Express Membership Rewards points are also significantly more valuable since they can be used for the fixed travel program or transferred to Aeroplan or Marriott Bonvoy.

Speaking of 5%, you will earn 5% back at, grocery stores and restaurants for the first six months, up to $3,000 in eligible purchases. This is a great way to get some extra rewards if you have some large purchases coming up. Remember, this credit card has no annual fee so it can really benefit you to sign up.

Getting 2.5% back at Whole Foods Market is great if you happen to shop there, but with the prices they charge, 2.5% back won’t even seem like much. There are already other credit cards out there that give you 4-5% on groceries such as the Amex Cobalt Card and the Scotiabank Gold Amex, so you could argue that the Amazon credit card isn’t that good for grocery purchases.

The 2.5% in rewards you get on purchases you make in a foreign currency essentially washes the 2.5% fee you pay for purchases not made with Canadian dollars. This is a nice benefit and it just helps grow the list of credit cards without foreign transaction fees which is clearly great for Canadians.

I think it’s a bit silly that non-Amazon prime members only earn 1.5 Amazon Rewards per dollar spent on Amazon and Whole Foods purchases, but this is clearly a marketing decision to get people to signup for Prime. Just like the instant $10 off when you sign up. Sure, it’s $10 off, but there are much better sign up offers out there.

The included purchase assurance and extended warranty are standard benefits that come from Mastercard and are nothing special. Since this is a no-fee credit card, you won’t be getting any premium benefits such as travel insurance, lounge access, or mobile device insurance.

How Amazon Rewards works

Amazon Rewards is pretty simple. There is no expiration date on your points and 2,000 Amazon Rewards will earn you a $20 gift card.

It’s essentially a cash back program with nothing extra to it. I personally prefer travel rewards since I can usually claim flights or hotels which have an incredible value, but I certainly understand why some people prefer something simple such as Amazon Rewards.

I also want to note that unlike PC Optimum, Amazon never has any special promotions where you can earn more points on purchases or get more cash-back when you redeem a set amount of points. Mastercard pros and cons

There’s no denying that the Mastercard is great for people who shop at Amazon regularly, but that doesn’t mean you should apply right away and use it as your everyday card. You need to look at the Mastercard pros and cons before you make a decision.

What credit score do you need for Amazon Rewards Card?

As a traditional credit card, you’ll likely need a credit score of at least 660 to be approved for the Rewards Mastercard. Note that your credit score takes a hit of 10 points when you apply.

Besides the credit score, you only need to be a resident of Canada and the age of majority in the province or territory where you live. Getting approved is easy, so it could be handy for people who are looking to maximize their rewards. Mastercard pros

  • High earn rate on Amazon purchases – You’ll get 2.5% back on Amazon and Whole Foods purchases.
  • Rewards on foreign transactions – The 2.5% in rewards you get on foreign transactions negates the 2.5% fee you pay.
  • No annual feel – Getting this card won’t cost you anything.
  • Welcome bonus – You get a $10 Amazon gift card and 5% back on grocery stores and restaurant purchases in the first six months. Mastercard cons

  • Base card is weak – If you don’t have an Amazon Prime membership, the base card you get is not very good.
  • Low base earn rate – Getting 1% back in rewards on all other purchases is nothing special.

How the Mastercard compares to others

Beyond the Amex Cobalt and Scotiabank Gold Amex which I mentioned above, there are quite a few credit cards that compare to the credit card, but it really comes down to where you shop.

For example, the PC Financial World Elite Mastercard gives you a much higher earn rate at Loblaws owned stores, Shoppers Drug Mart and Joe Fresh. If you paired that with PC Insiders, you could be rolling in the PC Optimum points. Despite the higher earn rate, this card only benefits you if you shop at stores where you get a higher earn rate. In other words, the PCF World Elite Mastercard won’t benefit you if you do all your shopping on Amazon.

The other comparable card is the Triangle World Elite Mastercard which is targeted at people who do a lot shopping at Canadian Tire, Sports Check, Mark’s and Atmosphere locations. Like the PCFWEMC, the Triangle card is good where you can earn additional points, but it’s pretty basic if you’re shopping on Amazon.

A lot of people like this card because it has no foreign transaction fees. While that’s true, there are other credit cards out there that are better and have no foreign transaction fees. For example, the Wealthsimple Cash Card has no foreign transaction fees on purchases and ATM withdrawals. This is handy for people who need cash when travelling. Plus, you get $10 for free when you sign up with my referral link.

Final thoughts

My Rewards Mastercard review is positive. This is a no-fee card that gets linked to your Amazon account immediately so it’s perfect for those who shop a lot on Amazon. It’s also one of the best store credit cards in Canada. That said, it lacks many other benefits that some of the best travel rewards credit cards offer and it’s not the best credit card without foreign transaction fees.

About Barry Choi

Barry Choi is a Toronto-based personal finance and travel expert who frequently makes media appearances. His blog Money We Have is one of Canada’s most trusted sources when it comes to money and travel. You can find him on Twitter:@barrychoi


  1. Alex on June 18, 2019 at 9:26 AM

    Having loved my Chase Rewards Visa, I was at first excited, then severely disappointed with this card when it came up on my phone this morning. As you outlined, effectively 0 reward on foreign currency (compared with 1.5% on Rogers WE), spend $800 on Amazon to get $20 (vs. PayTM Amazon Reward + Rogers WE spend $347.82 to get $20).

    • Barry Choi on June 18, 2019 at 9:31 AM


      I totally agree. I LOVED my old card from CHASE but all the other credit card providers have released much better cards. This one from MBNA is a bit disappointing. That being said, I suppose 2.5% back on Amazon purchases is good if you shop there a lot.

  2. EM on June 18, 2019 at 9:32 AM

    I used to have the CHASE card and I liked it for the no foreign transaction fee. The rewards were direct statement credits so I guess the only enticement to use Amazon was getting 2% there as opposed to 1% elsewhere. It was a secondary card so it was ok. Since then I got BRIM as a secondary card and so far so good. So I won’t be coming to with MBNA as I am not a Prime member.

    • EM on June 18, 2019 at 9:35 AM

      Also… I liked that it was a VISA as my primary is a Mastercard. Does that make any difference? My thought was try to “diversify” my retail lenders.

      • Barry Choi on June 18, 2019 at 10:55 AM

        I wouldn’t worry too much about this being a Mastercard.

        • Csvan on November 4, 2019 at 7:20 PM

          My question is where an I supposed to sign the card? It’s all black except for the white printed card number. If I sign in that, I’ll never see my card number! ‍♀️

  3. Kun on November 5, 2019 at 4:37 PM

    I just received this card. A little confused with the no frills look of it. No name or number on the front of the card, is it a security feature or something. Anyway, a great feature is that Amazon lets you use it right away before you receive the physical card. Paired with, I am getting 6% off my purchases which add up to a lot. I also have the PC mastercard and triangle card, they make for a big wallet but between the three of them and my Rogers world elite for forex transactions I am covered

    • Andrew on November 26, 2019 at 5:15 AM

      Are you sure there’s rental car insurance on it? Never saw this when applying.

      • Barry Choi on November 26, 2019 at 7:41 AM

        Hey Andrew,

        Good catch. When I first wrote this review, rental car insurance and common carrier insurance were listed on the website but it’s no longer there. Interesting enough, it still links to MBNA’s generic travel insurance website but it doesn’t say which category the card falls under so I’ve deleted the references for now.

  4. Brandon Mccluskey on April 27, 2020 at 8:42 PM

    How do you link your credit card to your amazon card my amazon account doesn’t have any info on it. I signed up for it and it doesn’t say anything. Also how do I check if my amazon account is linked too my account don’t I type the information first?

  5. Brandon Mccluskey on April 27, 2020 at 8:43 PM

    I typed the wrong email on when I signed up. I changed it but I don’t have an amazon profile.

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