Credit cards with mobile device insurance (sometimes known as credit cards with cell phone insurance) is a relatively new trend that’s come to Canada over the last few years. There used to be only two credit cards that offered it but a few cards have added the insurance to their benefits while a few new credit cards are now including it as a standard benefit.

When you think about it, credit cards with cell phone insurance just makes sense. Just about everyone carries a mobile device on them these days and there’s a good chance that it’s the most expensive thing you’re carrying at any given time. Also, who hasn’t cracked their screen or seen their battery life drop dramatically while owning a phone? By having a credit card with mobile device insurance, you can protect yourself, but you need to know how the insurance works first.

The best credit cards with mobile device insurance

Credit cardCoverageAnnual fee
Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite$1,000$120, FYF
Meridian Visa Infinite Cash Back Card$1,000$99 - FYF
Tangerine World Mastercard$1,000$0
CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite Card$1,000$120
RBC Avion Visa Infinite$1,500$120

What is credit card mobile device insurance?

Credit cards with mobile device insurance cover your cell phone, smartphone, or tablet if it’s lost, stolen, damaged, or experiences mechanical failure. To qualify for this insurance, you need to charge the full cost of your new device to your credit card with cell phone insurance. If the cost of your device is subsidized via your monthly plan, then you need to charge the full amount of your monthly bill payment to the credit card with mobile device insurance for your policy to be valid.

Every mobile device insurance policy is different, but generally speaking, you’ll be covered up to $1,500 and for two years.  

How does credit card cell phone insurance depreciation work?

Even though your credit card cell phone insurance policy will cover you up to a certain amount, if you need to make a claim, there’s depreciation and the deductible to consider. Depreciation is 2% for each completed month from the date of purchase while the deductible is a fixed amount that’s based on the value of your phone when you bought it or 10% of the calculated depreciation amount. You need to pay this deductible before your insurance provider pays out your claim. In addition, the deductible is factored into your final payout. 

For example, for the deductible, Scotiabank, Tangerine, and Meridian use the following fixed chart.

RBC and CIBC use the 10% depreciation value method. 

Now let’s say you bought a mobile device for $800 and you needed to make a claim after 8 months. The payout formula would look something like this:

  • Purchase price = $800
  • Less depreciation value = -$128 (2% X 8 months X $800)
  • Depreciation value = $672
  • Less applicable deductible = -$100 (or $67.20 for RBC and CIBC)
  • Maximum reimbursement = $572 (or $604.80 for RBC and CIBC)

If you’re going to get a replacement mobile device with your claim, it must be of the same make and model as the original mobile device or in the event, the same make and model is not available, of like kind and quality with comparable features and functionality as the original mobile device. 

It may be tempting to get get a credit card with the highest mobile device insurance in case you need to make a claim, but it’s just as important to consider the annual fee, sign up bonus, regular earn rate and additional benefits before you pick your credit card with cell phone insurance.

Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite 

  • $120 annual fee – First year free
  • $1,000 credit card mobile device insurance
  • Coverage begins: 30 days from the date of purchase of your mobile device and the date the first monthly wireless bill payment is charged to your account
  • 4% cash back on groceries and recurring bill payments
  • 2% cash back on gas and transit purchases
  • 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • Comprehensive travel insurance
  • Purchase protection and extended warranty

Not many of the best cash back credit cards in Canada come with mobile device insurance so the Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite Card is a winner. Your earn rate is 4% cash back on groceries and recurring bill payments, 2% cash back on gas and transit purchases, and 1% on everything else. What’s great about this card is that there’s no spending cap on the cash back you earn so it’s a great choice for people who charge a lot of purchases to their card. As you can imagine, with the earn rate and benefits, this card is one of the best Scotiabank credit cards.

Meridian Visa Infinite Cash Back Card

  • $99 annual fee – First year free
  • $1,000 credit card cell phone insurance
  • Coverage begins: 90 days from the date of purchase of your mobile device and the date the second consecutive monthly wireless bill payment is charged to your account
  • Earn 4% cash back on gas and grocery purchases
  • Earn 2% cash back on pharmacy and utility bill payments
  • Earn 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • Purchase protection and extended warranty
  • Price protection

When looking at the list of credit cards with mobile device insurance, the Meridian Visa Infinite Cash Back Card has the best overall insurance package. Besides the mobile device insurance, you also get a comprehensive travel insurance package that includes travel medical, trip cancellation, flight delays, lost luggage, rental car insurance and more. You also get purchase protection which covers your purchases from loss, theft and damage for 90 days and extended warranty which doubles the manufacturer’s warranty for up to one additional year. Another benefit that comes with this card and is not found with many credit cards is price protection where you can get reimbursed the difference if you find a lower price within 60 days of your purchase.

Tangerine World Mastercard

  • No annual fee 
  • $1,000 credit card cell phone insurance
  • Coverage begins: 30 days from the date of purchase of your mobile device and the date the first monthly wireless bill payment is charged to your account
  • 2% cash back on up to 3 categories
  • 0.5% cash back on all other purchases
  • Rental car collision/loss damage insurance 
  • Purchase protection and extended warranty

Of all the credit cards with mobile device insurance, the Tangerine World Mastercard is the only one without an annual fee. A lot of people like this card because you get to choose up to three categories where you earn 2% cash back ($250 when you spend $5,000 in the first three months is the current sign up bonus). All other categories will only earn you 0.5%, but since this card has no annual fee, there’s nothing to complain about. This card is essentially an upgrade to the Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card with the only difference being that the Tangerine World Mastercard comes with mobile device, rental car insurance and Mastercard Airport Experiences Provided by LoungeKey.

CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite Card

  • $120 annual fee – Free if you have a CIBC Smart Plus Account
  • $1,000 credit card mobile device insurance
  • Coverage begins: The 91st day following the date of purchase
  • 20,000 Aventura Points welcome bonus with your first purchase (until March 1, 2020)
  • 15,000 Additional Aventura points when you spend $10,000 in the first year of card membership
  • 2 points per $1 spent on travel purchased through the CIBC Rewards Centre
  • 1.5 points per $1 spent at gas stations, grocery stores and drugstores
  • 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Priority Pass membership and four complimentary airport lounge entries per year
  • Rebate on NEXUS application fee

For people who love to travel, the CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite Card will appeal to you since it’s one of the best travel credit cards in Canada. The sign up bonus of 20,000 points is worth up to $400 which is a really good value. To earn the additional 15,000 points, you need to spend $10,000 in the first year which seems like a lot, but that works out to just $833.33 a month. This card also comes with a Priority Pass membership and four complimentary airport lounge entries per year which has a value of over $250. Plus, you get a NEXUS rebate that will be handy since NEXUS allows you to speed through customs at airports.

RBC Avion Visa Infinite

  • $120 annual fee
  • $1,500 credit card cell phone insurance
  • Coverage begins: The 91st day following the date of purchase
  • 15,000 RBC Rewards points welcome bonus (after your first statement)
  • Earn 1.25 RBC Rewards point for every $1 spent on travel
  • Earn 1 RBC Rewards point for every $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Purchase protection and extended warranty

The RBC Avion Visa Infinite Card rounds out my list of the best credit cards with cell phone insurance. Interestingly enough, it has the best coverage since your mobile devices are insured up to $1,500. Considering many smartphones cost well over $1,000 these days, the RBC card will likely interest quite a few people. In addition, this card is incredibly popular for travellers since RBC Rewards ranks second when it comes to Canada’s bank travel rewards programs. What makes RBC Rewards appealing is that you can transfer your points to WestJet Rewards and British Airways Avios. 

The Best Credit Cards With Mobile Device Insurance

Leave a Comment