American Express Canada AIR MILES Reserve Credit Card

Andrew Reyes  | 
  • Annual percentage rate (APR): 20.99% to 26.99%;
  • Purchase intro APR: None;
  • Rewards: 1 mile per $10 or $15 spent;
  • Annual fee: $299;
  • Late fee: N/A;
  • Credit score: Very good to excellent (740 to 850).
  • Compare cards here.

Benefits

  • Bonus offer: Approved new cardmembers will receive a welcome bonus of 2,400 bonus AIR MILES after making $3,000 in charges within the first three months. The award amount is enough for two flights.
  • Earn AIR MILES faster: AIR MILES is a popular rewards program in which members can earn miles for shopping at partner businesses and websites to redeem for travel, merchandise, attractions, or events. Earn one mile for every $10 in AIR MILES partner purchases or when you use your card at select gas stations, grocery stores, or drugstores. All other purchases earn one mile for $15 in spending.
  • Amex Reserve perks: Having a Reserve American Express puts you at the top tier for benefits. Exclusive privileges include:
    • Free annual companion flight;
    • Access to flights and higher seat classes through FlexFly which are not available to AIR MILES members;
    • Automatic Onyx status.

Drawbacks

  • High annual fee: The AIR MILES Reserve comes with a $299 annual fee. It’s high compared to other rewards cards, but affordable if you consider the fact that the American Express AeroplanPlus Reserve’s annual fee is $899. Nevertheless, consider whether the features and benefits you’ll receive from the card are items you’ll use annually to justify the cost.
  • Higher interest rate: At 20.99% APR, you’ll pay one point more in interest than most Canadian credit cards. Be especially careful of late payments — American Express could raise your APR to as high as 26.99%.
  • Points limited to the AIR MILES program: This card is best for members who are happily committed to the AIR MILES program since your spending can only be redeemed through AIR MILES.

What Can You Expect From the American Express Canada AIR MILES Reserve Credit Card?

Being an American Express Reserve cardmember gives you access to the best of what American Express and its partner brand have to offer. Amex Canada has negotiated with the AIR MILES program to provide exclusive benefits you’ll only be able to take advantage of if you’re a Reserve cardholder. Some of the top features of the card include:

Coverages and Benefits

American Express is lauded for the benefits and protections cardmembers have access to. Coverages include:

  • $100,000 travel accident insurance;
  • Emergency medical insurance when traveling;
  • Purchase protection;
  • Buyer’s assurance;
  • Lost or stolen bag insurance;
  • Burglarized hotel room insurance;
  • Flight and baggage delay insurances;
  • Car rental theft and damage insurance.

Exclusive Travel Perks

If you’re planning on redeeming your miles for travel, the AIR MILES Reserve card supplements your experience in the following ways:

  • Priority Lane access at Pearson Airport in Toronto.
  • Miles may be redeemed for flight taxes and fees only, saving you on AIR MILES fees;
  • Annual companion ticket;
  • Free access to Priority Pass airport lounges worldwide;
  • The FlexFly Program gives you access to business class or first class seats and flights not available to the standard AIR MILES members.

Amex Canada Mobile App

Manage your card and payments through the Amex Canada mobile app, available for Android or iOS. You can also view offers and discounts at retailers and businesses near you.

Who Should Get the American Express Canada AIR MILES Reserve Credit Card?

Canadian AIR MILES members who’d like to speed up their miles earnings and improve their travel experiences by adding VIP access to airport lounges and the opportunity to redeem their miles for business or first class seats should consider applying for the AIR MILES Reserve Amex.

The card comes with an annual fee of $299, which is higher than many rewards cards, but surprisingly affordable for an American Express Reserve. The number of perks and benefits you’ll receive once you’re a Reserve cardmember far outweigh the annual fee — as long as you take advantage of them.

The perks include a free annual companion ticket worth more than the $299 annual fee and a variety of travel exclusives, such as a faster, dedicated security lane at Pearson Airport and unlimited access to 1,200 Priority Pass airport lounges.

Compare other travel rewards cards and learn more here.


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