The biting cold and blowing snow are more than enough to get the heartiest Canadians thinking about a sunny island destination. While the cost of airfare, accommodations and activities can quickly add up, credit cards can help lower travel expenses.
The best travel credit cards offer lucrative perks that can get you jet setting sooner and more affordably than you think. Here are 3 ways the right credit card can help you save money for your vacation.
Signup bonuses will get you there sooner
Credit card companies and banks offer signup bonuses as incentives to attract new customers. You can stand to gain hundreds of dollars’ worth of points that can be redeemed for rewards including airfare and accommodations.
New Scotiabank Gold American Express card members can earn 20,000 bonus points – worth $200 – after you charge $1000 in purchases to the card in the first three months.
Similarly, new BMO AIR MILES World Elite MasterCard cardholders can earn 3,000 AIR MILES bonus miles when spending $3000 in the first three months. In addition to the first year’s $120 annual fee waived, card holders can also enjoy two annual complimentary VIP passes to airport lounges – a $150 value.
Both cards offer over $300 worth of bonus points that can be used towards free flights and hotel stays.
Travel insurance will protect you from the unexpected
Travel insurance can cost hundreds of dollars depending on your destination and length of the trip. Travel credit cards help save on this cost by providing travel insurance benefits when you use the card to pay for your vacation.
For example, the Scotiabank Gold American Express offers a wide range of travel protection to provide extra peace of mind if you find yourself in an unexpected situation:
- Travel Emergency Medical – up to 25 days / $1,000,000; if you require urgent medical care, on eligible out of province expenses
- Travel Accident Insurance – up to $1,000,000; if you suffer a loss a result of an accidental bodily injury
- Trip Cancellation – up to $2,500 per person, $10,000 per trip; if you need to cancel your trip before it’s started
- Trip Interruption – up to $2,500 per person, $10,000 per trip; if you trip is cut short or delayed
- Flight Delay – up to $500 per person for a minimum 4 hour delay
- Lost Baggage – up to $1,000 per trip
- Delayed Baggage – up to $1,000 per trip for a minimum 4 hour delay
BMO AIR MILES World Elite MasterCard card holders enjoy comparable coverage, from Travel Emergency Medical through Delayed Baggage, but with different limits. Naturally, insurance terms and policies can differ from one credit card to the next; it’s important to check the fine print before choosing which card to use when booking your vacation.
Auto insurance will help you get there safely
The use of a car can add an extra dimension of flexibility and freedom when on vacation. Rental car companies typically offer add-on insurance policies but the expense can add up over time. Fortunately, some credit cards – including both listed above – provide insurance that can help to reduce the overall cost to the rental.
With the full cost of the rental charged to the card, credit card car rental insurance coverage can extend to cover expenses that that result from vehicle damage and theft while rented out in your name. This type of coverage will also often include roadside assistance and reasonable towing charges.
It doesn’t hurt to call your car insurance company to find out how your collision, damage, and theft coverage can work together to provide the best protection at an affordable price.
The final word
With a little patience, earning rewards with a travel credit card can help you save for vacation. Plan accordingly to take advantage of sign up bonuses. Money saved on travel and car insurance can add a little extra for you to enjoy. As with all credit cards, remember to pay off balances in full each month to avoid costly late fees and interest. No rewards are worth taking on more debt.
Sign up at RentMoola and pay your rent with your credit card to take advantage of the benefits when you plan your vacation.