Compare National Bank Credit Cards in Canada

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National Bank Credit Cards


The National Bank is the sixth-largest bank in Canada, missing out on being part of the “Big Five” elite. This might be one of the reasons it offers a selection of Mastercards that are not quite up to par when it comes to their rewards programs. However, you will find they do offer many impressive features that still keep them in the running when seeking your ideal credit card. Here we review their top credit card choices and an overview of their benefits, drawbacks, and competitive edge.

National Bank Credit Cards Overview

In general, National Bank’s credit cards are available in the following categories:

  •        Low interest
  •        Travel
  •        Cashbacks
  •        Rewards
  •        No fee

You can find something to suit your needs, but as mentioned when it comes to rewards programs you might be better off with other products.

National Bank Credit Card Benefits and Perks

Here we take a look at the benefits and perks of National Bank’s top-rated credit cards:

National Bank World Elite Mastercard

If you’re looking for a card that is generous with its welcome bonus and has tons of premium travel perks this is the card for you. You can get up to $1,100 in the first year in bonuses and special offers as well as one of the best insurance programs around for a credit card. The perks and benefits include:
  •        A limited offer to earn $300 in bonus cashback when you spend $4,000 in the first 3 months
  •        1.5 points per $1 spent on the first $40,000 in annual purchases
  •        2 points per $1 on the next $40,000 in purchases
  •        1.5 points per $1 after that
  •        1 cent per point when redeemed for travel through A La Carte Rewards
  •        Savvy Traveler Reimbursements including $100 on airport parking, $100 on baggage fees, and $50 on airline seat selection annually
  •        Unlimited access to the National Bank Lounge at the Montreal-Trudeau Airport with some restrictions
  •        2 year Extended Warranty         
  •        180 Day Purchase Protection    
  •        60 Day Emergency Medical Term          
  •        15 Day Emergency Medical over 65      
  •        $2500 Trip Cancellation 
  •        $5000 Trip Interruption
  •        $500 Flight Delay
  •        $500 Baggage Delay      
  •        $1000 Lost or Stolen Baggage
  •        Rental Car Theft & Damage       
  •        $2000 Rental Car Personal Effects        

National Bank ECHO Cashback Mastercard

This cashback rewards card offers a respectable rewards rate that the bank says could earn an average of $291 a year on your weekly spending such as gas, cell phone, utilities, dining out, and groceries. It offers the following features:

  •        1.5% cashback on gas, groceries, and online purchases
  •        1% cashback on all other eligible purchases
  •        You just need $10 earned in cashback to apply it back to your account
  •        Zero Liability Insurance
  •        Purchase protection in the event of theft or damage for up to 90 days after purchases
  •        Extended warranty up to 1 additional year

National Bank Syncro Mastercard

This is the ideal choice if you need to save money on interest. You just have to keep an eye on the prime rate as it bases its rate off the prime + 4% on purchases which means a minimum rate of 8.9%. This goes up for cash advances and balance transfers to prime + 8%, for a minimum rate of 12.9%. When applying just make sure the prime is sitting below 3.95% and you’re golden. You also still get the following insurance benefits:

  •        Zero Liability Insurance
  •        Purchase protection in the event of theft or damage for up to 90 days after purchases
  •        Extended warranty up to 1 additional year

National Bank Credit Card Drawbacks

There are some drawbacks to National Bank credit cards such as the high-income requirements for the World Elite of $80,000 personal or $150,000 household and the $150 annual fee. Just keep in mind this is not uncommon for this type of card with similar features. As well, in some cases, the annual fee is waived for the first year. Because of the high-income requirement, you can consider going for the National Bank World Mastercard.

When looking at the National Bank Syncro Mastercard, as mentioned, you need to consider the prime rate as it fluctuates and so too will your interest rates. You are probably better off looking for a card with a fixed low interest rate although they might not offer as good an insurance package. You also don’t earn rewards with the Syncro, where there are some low-interest cards that do. There are also other low-interest cards that offer special interest rates when you make a high-interest credit card balance transfer. Because low interest rate cards appeal to those carrying a hefty balance on high-interest credit cards, it makes sense to look into the best rates related to transfers if this is your goal.

How do National Bank credit cards compare to other banks?

Overall National Bank credit cards tend to offer lower annual fees or at least on par when looking at premium cards. While their rewards programs aren’t as robust as many competitors, where you’ll really see the benefits is with their travel rewards insurance. When it comes to rewards points, your average points earned for any of their rewards cards is about 1.58% while the average for other credit cards is more like 2% to 4%. Last but not least, when it comes to welcome bonuses, National Bank really lags behind the competition offering zero incentive other than the odd waiving of the first year for the annual fee cards.

How to choose the right National Bank credit card for your need?

The best National Bank credit card or any credit card for that matter really depends on what you are looking for in terms of features. You also have to consider your credit score and income, as this impacts the cards you can qualify for. However, when looking specifically at the National Bank, if you want a solid travel rewards card, National Bank World Elite Mastercard is best. For a low-interest card, you’ll get the best rates from the National Bank Syncro Mastercard although you won’t get much more from it feature-wise. Last but not least, the National Bank ECHO Cashback Mastercard offers a reasonably respectable cash back card, but it pales in comparison to other cards which can earn you closer to 2% or in some cases more depending on the card and purchase.

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