ScotiaGold Passport Visa Card Review 2021
Someday soon, we might all be able to travel again, and with that in mind, you might be thinking about picking up a travel rewards credit card.
The ScotiaGold Passport Visa, a mid-tier travel rewards credit card, could help you get closer to your goal of a nice Caribbean vacation once we're all free to breathe in each other's faces once again.
Is the ScotiaGold Passport Visa Card the right credit card for you? Let's take a look in this ScotiaGold Passport Visa Card review.
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A ScotiaGold Passport Visa Card Review for 2021
The ScotiaGold Passport Visa is primarily a travel rewards credit card. When you use the card for everyday purchases, you can earn Scotia Rewards points that you can redeem for travel, merchandise, and other special offers.
We’ll look at how this card works in greater detail below.
Perks of the ScotiaGold Passport Visa
The card comes with a respectable amount of travel insurance coverage. The offer includes insurance for medical travel emergencies, delayed and lost baggage, travel accidents, and hotel burglaries.
You’ll also save up to 25% on car rentals from Avis and Budget, and you’ll get rental car collision/loss/damage insurance included when you use your card to pay for the full amount of the rental.
The ScotiaGold Passport Visa allows point redemption for travel anywhere, anytime, and with no travel restrictions.
Cardholders also get access to the Scotia Rewards Travel Service which includes the best price guarantee on airfares and a 5% cashback offer when you pay for travel with your card.
ScotiaGold Passport Visa Cashback and Rewards
The ScotiaGold Passport Visa Card pays out in the form of Scotia Rewards, one of the most flexible and consistent credit card rewards programs in Canada.
You can earn one Scotia Rewards point for every dollar you spend on the card. And you’ll get 5,000 bonus Scotia rewards points when you make your first purchase.
When you’re ready, you can redeem your points for travel at a fixed value of $50 per 5,000 points. They can also be used to purchase merchandise or redeemed for credit toward your monthly statement.
The card also offers a unique cashback offer when you book travel with the Scotia Rewards Travel Service.
When you take advantage of Scotiabank’s in-house travel agency, they’ll pay you 5% cashback on the travel you book with your ScotiaGold Passport Visa Card.
ScotiaGold Passport Visa Card Insurance
While the ScotiaGold Passport Visa’s insurance scope isn’t top of the line, it still offers good coverage for those who like to travel. This includes:
- Travel emergency medical insurance: pays for the cost of emergency healthcare while you're traveling
- Rental car collision/loss/damage insurance: covers your obligations to the rental company in the event you crash your rental car
- Delayed and lost baggage insurance: reimburses you for small purchases in the event your bags get lost or delayed in transit
- Travel accident insurance: pays out if you are killed or severely injured while traveling
- Hotel burglary insurance: replaces up to $1,000 in items stolen from your hotel while traveling
Note that for any of this coverage to apply, you need to use your ScotiaGold Passport Visa Card for the full amount of the booking.
The ScotiaGold Passport Visa also comes with purchase security and extended warranty protection. Scotiabank also offers the option of additional insurance policies that will pay off your credit card balance in the event you are not able to.
ScotiaGold Passport Visa Card Fees and Interest
The ScotiaGold Passport Visa Card has a moderate annual fee of $110, plus $30 for each supplementary card.
With a single card, you’ll earn a net reward (i.e., the value of your rewards will outstrip the cost of your annual fee) once you spend about $925 on the card per month.
Unlike some travel rewards cards, the ScotiaGold Passport Visa doesn’t waive the annual fee for your first year, so the $110 charge will show up on your first statement.
The interest rate charged on the card is fairly standard among credit cards at 19.99% on purchases and 22.99% on cash advances and balance transfers.
If you plan to carry a balance on your credit card, interest charges will quickly negate any Scotia Rewards points you earn. So, always plan to pay your balance in full every month to avoid interest charges.
ScotiaGold Passport Visa Card Pros & Cons
This travel rewards credit card has a few drawbacks like the relatively high annual fee, but there are also some great benefits for those who aren’t eligible for the Infinite version of the card.
Pros: The Good Stuff
Minimum income requirement is only $12,000 (some other travel rewards cards require $60,000 or more)
Scotia Rewards points can be redeemed for travel, merchandise, and bill credits at equal value or to cover travel you’ve already purchased with the card
Offers decent insurance coverage including rental car damage coverage
Cons: The Not So Good Stuff
High annual fee for the level of benefits it offers (the Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite Card has so many more benefits for just $29 more per year)
Poor rewards earning of 1 point per dollar spent which works out to a 1% reward (the Scotiabank Gold American Express Card pays up to 5 points per dollar on some spending categories)
Mediocre welcome bonus
Our Final Thoughts
The ScotiaGold Passport Visa is a mid-tier travel rewards card that offers good, but not great, rewards and travel insurance coverage.
Because the annual fee is relatively high, this card is best for those who specifically want a travel rewards card and plan to take advantage of the various insurance programs offered, but don’t meet the high-income requirement for the Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite Card and aren’t interested in Scotiabank’s American Express offer.
Those who qualify, however, will get more bang for their buck from either of those alternative cards. Both offer far stronger rewards and benefits for only a modestly higher annual fee.
Frequently Asked Questions
The ScotiaGold Passport Visa Card is best for earning travel rewards and booking travel.
The 5% cashback offer on travel booked through the Scotia Rewards Travel Service is a nice perk and the travel insurance benefits are likely to suit the needs of most casual travelers.
The ScotiaGold Passport Visa Card is best for those who want to earn travel rewards but don’t meet the qualification criteria for one of Scotiabank’s more premium travel rewards cards like the Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite Card or the Scotiabank Gold American Express Card.
Yes, the ScotiaGold Passport Visa Card comes with purchase security and extended warranty protection.
When you make a purchase using your card, you’re insured against theft, loss, or damage for 90 days from the purchase date, and any manufacturer’s warranty is automatically doubled for up to one year.