MBNA True Line Mastercard Review

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The MBNA True Line Mastercard is one of the most underrated credit cards in Canada. Instead of offering cash back or travel rewards, it only gives you the option to balance transfer and a low interest rate. For people who are high on rewards, this is obviously disappointing. However, if debt and cash flow management is a concern, then this card can be a good choice.

That’s because the introductory interest rate on balance transfers is incredibly low. Plus, the regular purchase interest rate is lower than most other credit cards. Also, the card has no annual fee. Read my MBNA True Line Mastercard review now for all the details.

MBNA True Line Mastercard

  • No annual fee
  • 0% balance transfer for 12 months – 3% balance transfer fee applies
  • 12.99% standard interest rate
  • Save with Avis Rent A Car and Budget Rent A Car

Welcome bonus and earn rate

Instead of a traditional welcome bonus of points or cash back, the MBNA True Line Mastercard allows you to perform a balance transfer. That’s where you transfer the existing balance from one credit card and move it to your MBNA True Line Mastercard with an introductory interest rate of 0% for 12 months. Once the promotional period ends, you’ll pay 12.99% interest.

This is beneficial since most credit cards have an interest rate of 19.99%+. You’d be able to cut the amount of interest you’re paying by quite a bit. That said, there is a balance transfer fee of 3% (minimum fee of $7.50), and you must complete the transfer within 90 days of opening your account.

As for the earning rate, there is none. You don’t earn any rewards or cash back with this card.

Benefits and perks

The only worthwhile benefit is the balance transfer option, but that’s technically part of the welcome bonus. If you’re looking for additional perks, you’re going to be very disappointed. That said, you do get access to the following:

Save with Avis and Budget Rent A Car

When renting a car at Avis or Budget and paying with your MBNA True Line Mastercard, you’ll get at least 10% off the base rate in Canada and the U.S., and at least 5% off internationally. When making online bookings, use discount code #C078405 at Avis or #A331704 with Budget.

Zero liability protection

As a Mastercard cardholder, you’re not responsible for any unauthorized purchases made with your card in-stores or online. Fraudulent cash advances also won’t be blamed on you.

Emergency services

If your card is lost or stolen, you can contact customer service to have an emergency replacement card sent to you within 7-10 days.

MBNA True Line Mastercard eligibility

  • You’re a Canadian resident
  • You’re the age of majority in your province/territory of residence

There’s no minimum income required to be considered for this card. Although there’s also no minimum credit score listed, a score of at least 660 is recommended.

How the MBNA True Line Mastercard compares to others

MBNA True Line Mastercard vs. Scotiabank Value Visa Card

The Scotiabank Value Visa is arguably the closest competition to the MBNA True Line Card. With the Scotiabank card, there’s a 0% interest on balance transfers for the first ten months. That’s the same length has MBNA’s promotional rate, but the Scotiabank Card has a balance transfer fee of just 1% ($5 minimum). The Scotiabank Value Visa has an annual fee of $29, but it’s usually waived for the first year.

MBNA True Line Mastercard vs. MBNA True Line Gold Mastercard

Another competitor is the MBNA True Line Gold Mastercard. Although there’s no promotional interest rate when performing balance transfers, you get a purchase and balance transfer interest rate of 8.99% (1% fee for balance transfers apply, $7.50 minimum). This card has an annual fee of $39.

MBNA True Line Mastercard vs. American Express Essential Card

You could also consider the American Express Essential Card, which has an annual fee of $25 and a low standard interest rate of 12.99% on purchases. That’s the same as the MBNA True Line card. With this card, you get access to American Express perks, such as Invites, which will appeal to some people.

The one advantage of the MBNA True Line Mastercard is that it’s a Mastercard and is more widely accepted compared to American Express cards. 

Final thoughts

My MBNA True Line Mastercard review is positive. The card is one of the best balance transfer credit cards in Canada and it’s ideal for people in the following situations:

  • You want to reduce your debt – The 0% interest for 12 months balance transfer option can help you reduce your debt.
  • You typically carry a balance – the 12.99% standard purchase interest rate is significantly lower than many other cards on the market.
  • You don’t want to pay an annual fee – This card has no monthly or yearly fees.

While the low interest is great, there are no additional benefits or perks of interest that come with this card.

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

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