Top 5 US Dollar Credit Cards In Canada (2020)

Last updated on April 4th, 2020 at 03:02 pm

With U.S. Dollar Credit Cards, you won’t be left flat-footed by a sudden hike in the exchange rate or the constant conversion fee for every time you swipe your card – that’s because you won’t be needing either of them.

There are many reasons why Canadians (or anybody really) will find themselves spending a lot of time in the US. Perhaps, you have a lot of families there, or maybe you’re there on vacation or to strike a business deal or a plethora of other reasons. Whatever the case, if you spend a lot of time in the States, you’ve probably experienced first hand the problems that can come with spending foreign currency.

The big deal here is that it is expensive to spend foreign currency. Canadian credit cards, for instance, are accepted in the US, and you can certainly do all your spending from it – that is if you’re fine with the extra currency conversion fee that is always tacked onto your purchase for every single transaction.

Typically, this conversion fee is pegged at 2.5% of your transaction amount. This means you’ll be parting with $51.25 for a $50 meal, and remember, that’s just one meal. Do that three times a day, 7 days a week, and then tack on your other expenses and you can see that it adds up really fast.

This is why it is expedient to own US Dollar Credit Cards for your spending in the US.

US Dollar Credit Cards - 2

Quick Peek At The Top 5 US Dollar Credit Cards

1. BMO U.S. Dollar Mastercard

2. RBC U.S. Dollar Visa Gold

3. TD U.S. Dollar Visa Card

4. Scotiabank U.S. Dollar Visa Card

5. Meridian VISA U.S. Dollar Card

Why Do You Need A US Dollar Credit Card?

Canadian banks and other financial institutions offer this type of credit card mostly for the benefit of their U.S.-bound itinerant customers who spend a lot of time and money in the U.S. or do a lot of shopping from U.S. vendors.

Canadians who need the US Dollar credit cards usually meet at least one or more (usually more) of the following criteria:

  • They travel to the U.S. on a regular basis

  • They do most of their business in the US which means they often have to pay for services in U.S. Dollars

  • They have and operate a USD bank account

  • They spend at least a quarter of the year in the U.S.

So what are the best U.S. Dollar credit cards on offer from Canadian financial outfits? We’ve made a list of the best ones that we can think of.

US Dollar Credit Cards - 3

1. BMO U.S. Dollar Mastercard

 The Bank of Montreal’s U.S. Dollar Mastercard is definitely a contender for the best credit card in this niche for a lot of reasons. For one, it has a really low annual fee of $35 USD, which is arguably the lowest annual fee of any U.S. Dollar credit card in Canada.

More interesting, is the fact that if you spend $1000 USD or more within a year using this card, the annual fee for the succeeding year is waived. There are few other benefits this card gives that makes it perfect for travellers and USD spenders:

The BMO Dollar Mastercard is also accessible to people in a lower personal income category, thanks to its $15,000 minimum requirement. Also, to qualify for this card you need to have a fair credit score ranging from around 560 to 659. This card offers no rewards, but with perks like these, who needs rewards, right?

2. RBC U.S. Dollar Visa Gold

This credit card offer is from the Royal Bank of Canada and costs nearly twice as much as the BMO U.S. Dollar Mastercard in terms of annual fees; the RBC credit card will set you back $65 in annual fees.

This card packs a punch in certain other areas. An example would be its robust travel and purchase insurance. In terms of rewards, they give you 1 point for every dollar spent. Its rewards amount to roughly 1.13% of your spend value. A quick outline of its benefits and features:

  • Annual fee of $65

  • No currency exchange fees

  • 1 point earned for every dollar in spending

  • Shop at eligible retailers and earn bonus points

  • Redeem points for travel rewards, gift cards, financial products or merchandise

  • Free and comprehensive travel insurance

  • Purchase protection

Also, if you want to get an additional card on the same card account, you won’t need to pay $65 anymore.

Applying for an additional credit card will cost you $30 apiece, which is less than half of the original price of $65.

Also, user reviews show that you’ll need a really good credit score to successfully apply for the RBC U.S. Dollar Card. Your score should be anywhere from 725 to 759.

3. TD U.S. Dollar Visa Card

If you’re not really big on credit card rewards but prefer having a comprehensive suite of purchase and travel benefits, this credit card is worth your consideration.

Provided by TD Bank Group, this U.S. Dollar credit card is not the cheapest you can get: in terms of its $39 USD annual fee, it is considered of average cost. Some of its benefits and features include:

TD U.S. Dollar Visa Card also includes travel insurance packages for trip interruption, travel accident, delayed and lost baggage and more. The card is also compatible with contactless payment services like Visa payWave and Apple Pay.

Subject to your credit limit, you can also get a cash advance on short notice of up to $5000. The minimum credit limit for getting this card is $1000 and the ideal credit score for applying for it ranges from 725 to 759.

4. Scotiabank U.S. Dollar Visa Card

The third credit card from Visa on this list, Scotiabank’s offering is a very reliable credit card for avid travellers and online shoppers in terms of USD spending. For starters, it costs a low annual fee of $35 USD to get this card.

Like most credit cards provided by Visa, this card comes with Visa Checkout to simplify and further secure your online shopping needs. It also works with Android Pay and Apple Pay. While this credit card offers no rewards, perhaps it’s the neatest trick is the fact that applying for additional cards on your account comes at no extra cost. To get this card requires a personal income minimum of $12,000

  • A $35 annual fee

  • Visa Checkout feature

  • Compatible with Android Pay and Apple Pay

  • Zero fees for supplementary credit cards

  • Purchase protection (90 days) and extended warranty (1 year)

5. Meridian VISA U.S. Dollar Card

Meridian Credit Union’s offering is the costliest card on this list, tied with RBC’s credit card at an annual fee of $65. But it does offer something a little more: as a new Visa U.S.Dollar Cardholder, Meridian will waive the annual fee for your first year. To get supplementary cards you will have to pay $30 for each of them.

Meridian VISA U.S. Dollar Card offers rewards. For every $1 USD spent, you get 1 reward point. These points can be redeemed at any time in the form of merchandise or as cashback.

  • $65 annual fee (waived for the first year)

  • Insurance packages cover travel accident, baggage delay and loss, trip interruption and cancellation, car rental collision/damage waiver, zero liability, extended warranty, and purchase protection

  • 1 rewards point for every $1 USD spent

  • No threshold for redeeming rewards points. Can redeem as cashback or merchandise

  • No minimum personal or household income required

In terms of interest rates, this credit card balance transfer rates of $19.50 and cash advance rates of $21.99, both of which are slightly lower than the rates from most other credit card options.

US Dollar Credit Cards - 4

Are U.S. Dollar Credit Cards Always The Best?

It is true that there is still a reasonable number of people who prefer to use no-fee conversion cards. However, even though these cards eliminate currency conversion fees, allowing you to pay without hassle, you will still be subject to price changes from any exchange rate change.

As a general rule, if your spending is such that the conversion fee of 2.5% amounts to more than the annual fee of the card, you should opt for a US Dollar Card and avoid those fees the hassle of conversion entirely.

Conclusion 

There you go, that was the list of the best 5 US Dollar Credit Cards In Canada. Please pick the ones that suit your needs and you feel it is worth going for. 

Last but not the least, if you liked the content of this article do share it on social media and help spread the word. Also, please let me know your thoughts and comments below. 

Thanks for reading! Good day. 

Top 10 Popular Posts Of All Time

Top 5 US Dollar Credit Cards In Canada

4.95

Value For Money

4.9/5

Benefits

5.0/5

Rewards

5.0/5

Pros

  • As a general rule, if your spending is such that the conversion fee of 2.5% amounts to more than the annual fee of the card, you should opt for a US Dollar Card and avoid those fees the hassle of conversion entirely
  • It is true that there is still a reasonable number of people who prefer to use no-fee conversion cards
  • With a U.S. Dollar Credit Card, you won't be left flat-footed by a sudden hike in the exchange rate or the constant conversion fee for every time you swipe your card

Cons

  • Even though these cards eliminate currency conversion fees, allowing you to pay without hassle, you will still be subject to price changes from any exchange rate change

Sagar Sridhar

Sagar Sridhar is a personal finance blogger and a computer engineer. He is agile certified and has a master's degree in Project Management. His writing has been featured or quoted in leading publications such as Credit Canada and many other personal finance publications. "Risk comes from not knowing what you're doing" - Warren Buffet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *