Credit Card Review: Choice Privileges MasterCard

By Janet Hutchins on Mar 20, 2012 | Filed in Reviews

If you are looking for a hotel rewards credit card that can provide you with peace of mind and great opportunities to earn free stays, the Choice Privileges MasterCard from MBNA isn’t a bad option. It has no annual fee, and a competitive interest rate — especially for a rewards credit card. Plus, you can earn free stays at more than 1,500 Choice Hotel locations across North America, as well as Choice hotel locations in Europe, South America, Australasia, the Middle East and the Caribbean.

Earning Rewards with the Choice Privileges MasterCard

Amongst Canadian rewards credit cards, the Choice Privileges MasterCard stands out to some degree. Many rewards cards come with a flat-rate spend-to-reward ration, and many of them also have an annual fee. The Choice Privileges MasterCard, however, has no annual fee and a competitive rewards program. You can also earn rewards fairly quickly, as you can see:

All of these rewards mean that you can rack up the points fairly quickly, and earn stays easily. And, of course, the Choice Privileges MasterCard comes with all of the perks and protections you expect from MasterCard, including fraud liability protection, and enhanced Chip & PIN security.

This card is best for those who frequent Choice hotel properties. These properties include Comfort Inn, Clarion, Comfort Suites, Sleep Inn, Cambria Suites, EconoLodge, Quality Inn, and a number of other properties. There are also a few luxury hotels in the Ascend Collection of properties. You have many hotels to choose from, and if you are a frequent traveler, your points can add up quickly. Also, for best effect, pay off your balance each month.

As far as Canadian rewards credit cards go, the Choice Privileges MasterCard is pretty decent. You earn points quickly, they are easy to use around the world, and the interest rate and lack of annual fee make it competitive when compared to similar cards.

One thought on “Credit Card Review: Choice Privileges MasterCard

  1. Elaine

    I’ve been playing the credit card game for a while. I have to say, the Choice Privileges program is one of my favorite programs around. SPG is pretty good but I like the free breakfasts at Comfort/Quality Inns so typically choose to stay in the budget properties vs the higher end Starwood properties. Also, as a value-minded traveller, a hotel is a hotel and while I LIKE the extra luxuries at a nicer hotel, a basic 2.5 star Comfort/Quality Inn works just fine for me.

    As a former Priceline addict, I value a hotel at about $50 a night – for whatever rating. So that’s what I use to make comparisons between hotel plans – not rack rates which I don’t pay anyway.

    I earn 2 points/$1 with the Choice card. A typical Choice stay costs 8,000 points (ranges from 6,000 for Rodeway Inns to 20,000 for popular vacation destinations). So I have to spend $4000 for what is essentially $50 in value to me – making my points worth 1.25%.

    Not the greatest in the world, but not too dusty for a no fee credit card. MBNA SmartCash is only 1% cashback. Plus there’s the psychological factor with redemption – cash just goes towards our bills. I want to use our rewards for travel – much more fun to say let’s go there – it’s free to stay anyway.

    I’m still investigating other credit cards. I’ve been using the Capital One World Aspire which has been great, but I no longer spend enough to justify the annual fee.

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