Best Student Credit Cards in Canada

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There are a lot of student credit cards in Canada to choose from. It can be a bit overwhelming to say the least.

Especially since a student credit card is probably the first credit card you’re ever applying for.

My general rule of thumb is it is easiest just to get a Canadian student credit card from wherever you do your everyday banking. It just makes things easier and less complicated.

But sometimes people want to get the very best credit card from the start of their credit journey, and if that is you, this is the post for you!

The best student credit card in Canada to travel lovers is the CIBC Aeroplan Visa Card for Students. It gets you on your Aeroplan earning journey and saves you some money when you travel. But every bank has good student credit cards, so you can’t really go wrong with any of the student credit cards in Canada.

In this post, we are going to cover the top student credit cards in Canada.

We’re looking at the best student credit card from each of the big five banks. BMO, TD, CIBC, RBC, and Scotiabank.

We’re pitting them against each other!

This list goes from the best student credit card in Canada all the way down to the worst best credit card.

That’s a confusing sentence!

What I’m getting at is even number five on this list is still one of the top five student credit cards in Canada.

It beat out a number of other student credit cards in Canada, and you’re still good if it is the credit card you choose to get.

1. CIBC Aeroplan Visa Card for Students

The CIBC Aeroplan Visa Card for Students is the only travel student credit on this list.

Very surprising for a travel hacking website hey!

This credit card tops my list of the top student credit cards in Canada because it is the best way to get into travel hacking as a Canadian.

The Aeroplan program is one of the most popular travel programs in Canada, and it is one of the best programs to learn how to earn and redeem points for free travel.

I like that the CIBC Aeroplan Visa Card for Students offers a 10,000 Aeroplan point sign-up bonus and offers elevated points earning in gas and grocery purchases.

You don’t earn Aeroplan points as quickly as you do with a more premium Aeroplan card (like the American Express Aeroplan card), but it is a great starting point!

You should seriously consider getting the CIBC Aeroplan Visa Card for Students if you’re interested in travel hacking and learning that skill.

Read the full review of the CIBC Aeroplan Visa Card for Students

Highlights

  • Earn 1 Aeroplan point for every $1 spent at Air Canada, on gas, and groceries
  • Earn 1 Aeroplan point for every $1.50 spent on every other purchase
  • The ability to earn Aeroplan points twice when you shop through the Aeroplan shops portal
  • 10,000 Aeroplan points as a sign-up bonus (no minimum spend required!)
Student Travel Hacking

Who Should Consider Getting the Aeroplan CIBC Visa Card for Students

Of all the student credit cards in Canada, this credit card should be the top consideration for anybody who is interested in travel.

You probably won’t earn enough points to travel to Europe or Asia on points, but you can certainly earn enough Aeroplan points for a trip within North America!

That’s not too shabby at all!

2. Scotiabank Scene Visa Card for Students

Next up on the list of top student credit cards in Canada is the Scotiabank Scene Visa Card for Students.

This could arguably be the top student credit card in Canada and was just slightly beat out.

In fact, I think the Scotiabank Scene Visa Card for Students is a better fit for the average student.

I remember being a student back in the day, and I went to movies all the time.

And movies are expensive!

That’s why this credit card can be so valuable for students!

You earn Scene points at a pretty rapid pace. Faster than you earn Aeroplan points with the CIBC student card.

It becomes very easy to never have to pay for a movie again if you use this credit card wisely.

That’s a lot of money you can potentially save!

On top of a good points earning, you also receive 1,250 Scene points as a sign-up bonus after you make your first purchase with the card.

That’s enough for one free movie!

There is a lot of upside to the Scotiabank Scene Visa Card for Students.

I’m sure a lot of people would list it as the best student credit card in Canada.

Highlights

  • Earn 5 Scene points for every $1 spent at Cineplex and Cineplex.com
  • Earn 1 Scene point for every other $1 spent
  • 1,250 Scene points as s sign-up bonus
  • Save up to 25% off car rentals in Canada and the United States when you pay with the Scotiabank Scene Visa Card for Students

Tips for travelling alone for the first time

Couple Travelling Together

Who Should Consider Getting the Scotiabank Scene Visa Card for Students

Honestly. I think every student who goes to the movies should consider getting this credit card.

You earn a lot of points pretty quickly, and it is easy to use your points and see free movies.

I definitely see this being the top pick for the average student in Canada.

3. Students- BMO Cash Back Mastercard

There are quite a few cash back credit cards for students in Canada.

The BMO student cash back card is the clear winner in my eyes!

You earn an elevated amount of cash back in some of the categories students tend to spend the most money in.

Namely groceries.

You earn a whopping 3% cash back on grocery purchases with this credit card. That makes a huge difference over the course of a year.

I wish it included restaurants and food delivery services. That may be asking too much of a student credit card considering most premium cash back credit cards don’t offer that.

You also earn 1% cash back on recurring subscription purchases.

This includes your phone and internet bills, Netflix, and other subscription services.

You have to arrange for those bills to be paid automatically by your credit card, but that is easy enough to do and worth the effort.

Finally, the normal 0.5% cash back on other purchases isn’t anything to write home about.

But there is no way to deny that this is one of the top student credit cards in Canada.

You may be wondering why I didn’t select the student Air Mile credit card from BMO. That is because, on average, you get more value out of the cash back card than you do the Air Miles one.

Highlights

  • 3% cash back on groceries
  • 1% cash back on recurring subscriptions (like mobile and Netflix)
  • 0.5% cash back on every other purchase
Couple Travel Hacking

Who Should Consider Getting the Students- BMO Cash Back Mastercard

This is the top pick for a student cash back credit card in Canada.

You get the most cash back with this credit card, so if you’re interested in a cash back credit card as a student, this is the best option out there!

Be sure you offer to be the designated grocery shopper for you and all your roommates and have them pay you back afterwards.

That is the best way to earn a lot of cash back on this credit card!

4. TD Rewards Visa

The second to last on this list of best student credit cards in Canada is the TD Rewards Visa.

In terms of points, TD Rewards aren’t great, which is why this card is so far down the list.

It is still better than the TD cash back card for students but just barely.

The two reasons the TD Rewards card won out are you get a sign-up bonus worth $25 and they often run promotional rates where the interest rate is lower in the first six months of holding the card.

The other thing that is great about the TD Rewards Visa is it has elevated points earning in all food-related categories! This includes groceries, dining out, and food delivery services.

It doesn’t get better than that- especially for students who spend a fair amount of money on food!

This is a fine student credit card for people who already bank at TD, but I don’t suggest going out of your way to get this credit card.

Highlights

  • 10,000 TD Rewards points as a sign-up bonus (equivalent to a $25 gift card)
  • Earn 2 TD Rewards per $1 spent on gas, grocery, restaurants, food delivery services, and recurring bill payments
  • Earn 3 TD Rewards per $1 spent when making Expedia purchases through the TD link
  • For every other $1 spent, earn 1 TD Reward
  • Often runs promotions where the interest rate is lowered to 9.99% for the first six months of holding the card
Solo Female Travel

Who Should Consider Getting the TD Rewards Visa

Anybody who does their everyday banking at TD.

If you don’t bank at TD, then this isn’t the card for you. There isn’t enough upside to the card to make it worthwhile to go out of your way to get it.

Sorry TD! I like a bunch of your other products. Just not your student credit cards.

5. RBC Cash Back Mastercard

We are finally at the end of our list of the best student credit cards in Canada, and, unfortunately for them, RBC holds the title as offering the worst student credit cards in Canada.

Sorry RBC, but it is really your own fault.

The best student credit card RBC offers is the RBC Cash Back Mastercard.

The card doesn’t offer much value for its users, and I think RBC could have done a better job designing the card.

That being said, just because this is the last card on the list doesn’t mean it is a bad credit card!

There are worse student credit cards in Canada. Trust me.

The best part of this credit card is you earn 2% cash back on grocery purchases!

Highlights

  • Earn 2% cash back on grocery purchases
  • Earn 1% cash back on every other purchase
  • Link your card and save 3 cents per litre at Petro-Canada
  • Link you Rexall card and earn 50 points per $1 spent on eligible purchases
Woman waiting in airport

Who Should Consider Getting the RBC Cash Back Mastercard

I think the only people who should consider getting this credit card are people who do their everyday banking at RBC.

Just like the TD Visa, there isn’t enough benefit to the RBC Mastercard for you to go out of your way to get this credit card.

Conclusion

Those are my top five student credit cards in Canada. One from each of the big five banks in the country.

There are, of course, many other student credit cards and other providers you can go with.

I chose to stick to the big five because they are where 99.9% of students are getting their credit cards from.

Okay. I made that statistic up, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was spot on! Nearly everybody is getting their student credit card from one of the big five banks.

I hope this post helped you decide what student credit card you want to look into further.

As I said at the beginning of the post, I do think it is easiest just to get a student credit card with the bank you do your everyday banking with.

None of the student credit cards in Canada offer a big enough incentive for you to get a card from a bank that you don’t do your everyday banking at.

You’re just learning how to use a credit card, and the easier you make it, the more successful you will be!

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