If you’re reading my KOHO Premium Review, that likely means you’re already a KOHO user. If you happen to be a new user, you can check out my original KOHO review where I go over why KOHO is one of the best prepaid cards in Canada. Best of all, if you sign up with my KOHO referral code CASHMONEY20, you’ll get $20 for free when you activate your card and another $40 when you set up a direct load to your account for a total of $60!
As the name implies, KOHO Premium is KOHO’s premium service. It comes with a reasonable monthly/annual fee but are the additional benefits you get with this service worth it? Keep reading my KOHO Premium review to find out.
KOHO Premium benefits
- Free for 30 days then $9 per month or $84 per year
- $20 Activation bonus with CASHMONEY20 referral code (new users only)
- 2% cash back on groceries, eating & drinking and transportation
- No foreign exchange fees
- Free financial coaching
- Price matching
- Higher “velocity” limits
- New card design
When I first saw the list of benefits, I wasn’t that impressed but that’s because I was comparing them to some of the best travel credit cards in Canada. The thing is, KOHO isn’t a traditional credit card, so when I compared them to similar cards (which I’ll go into further details below), I quickly realized that KOHO Premium is impressive.
People will be turned off right away by the monthly fee of $9 but when you sign up for it annually’ it’s just $84 a year which works out to be $7 a month. That’s a pretty good price to pay for the extra benefits.
The new 2% cash back is what will appeal to people the most. Regular users et 0.5% cash back on all purchases, but this new 2% rate applies to groceries, eating & drinking and transportation. Similar to the American Express Cobalt card, eating and drinking applies to food delivery, bars, coffee shops and more which is a great way to earn points fast. Transportation covers Uber/ Lyft, taxis, gas, highway tolls, parking and more so you can see how you could earn points fast.
Although I would have loved to see no foreign exchange fees for all users, I’m excited that KOHO premium has introduced this. The regular foreign transaction fee on KOHO is 1.5% (which is lower than the industry average of 2.5%), but now you’ll just pay the lowest rate possible when making purchases in a foreign currency.
The included price matching is interesting since not many credit cards offer this. If you look into the details, you can actually send KOHO your past receipts from online purchases and they’ll search for you to see if there was a better price available. If there was, you’ll be credited the difference.
The final remaining benefits include free financial coaching where you can ask an expert any questions you may have about things such as taxes, investing and more. Higher “velocity” limits just means you can take out more money every day at ATMs and you can carry a higher balance. You’ll also get a new card which has a higher end design compared to the regular card.
How KOHO Premium compares to others
As a prepaid credit card, KOHO’s main “competition” is STACK since it’s also a prepaid card. That said, STACK doesn’t have a premium service like KOHO has introduced so it’s not fair to compare the two. I suppose if all you care about is no foreign transaction fees, then STACK comes out ahead, but with any comparison, you need to look at all the benefits.
You could also argue that KOHO premium’s 2% cash back is comparable to a cash back credit card. The Tangerine Money-Back credit card gives you 2% back on up to three categories, has no annual fee and is one of the best cash back credit cards in Canada, but it’s still not fair to compare the two since KOHO is not a true credit card. You can use your KOHO card to pay for anything that uses the Visa network, but your payment history doesn’t get reported to the credit bureaus.
Some people will also say that there are many other credit cards out there that offer better signup deals and give you more benefits, but again, KOHO is a prepaid credit card so it’s like comparing apples to oranges.
People who use KOHO typically are usually more interested in things such as managing their finances. A big welcome bonus or travel insurance is likely on the lower end of their priority list.
My KOHO premium review is positive. KOHO has taken their card to the next level by introducing a higher tier service. Remember, you can test it out for free for 30 days and if you’re a new member, use my KOHO referral code CASHMONEY20 so you can get up to $60 for free.