BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard Review

4.22

$120

Annual Fee

$271

Annual Rewards

3,000 miles

Intro Offer

$120

Annual fee

$271

Annual rewards

3,000 miles

Intro offer


Pros


  • Welcome bonus of 3,000 Air Miles after the first purchase
  • Earn 1 Air Mile for every $10 spent on eligible purchases
  • Annual fee waived for the first year ($120 value)
  • Comprehensive travel insurance coverage
  • Free membership in MasterCard Airport Experiences by LoungeKey
  • 15% discount on Air Miles flights within North America
  • No blackout dates or seat restrictions on reward flights

Cons


  • $80,000 minimum personal income or $150,000 household income requirement
  • Not ideal for those who rarely travel
  • Limited value for those not interested in Air Miles rewards program
  • Annual fee of $120 after the first year
  • Other credit cards may offer better rewards rates for specific spending categories
  • Minimal cashback or statement credit options

Performance test results

At DollarWise, for each credit card we test 7 different factors including the rewards, value for money, perks, insurance, strengths and weaknesses of the card.

You can see our full testing methodology here to learn why we’re the most trusted source for credit card reviews.

The BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard has earned a 4.22 DollarWise Rating out of 5. This score is based on a weighted average of the two highest scoring factors (excluding acceptance and approval).

Rewards

Fees

Perks

Interest rates

Insurance

Acceptance

Approval

The highest scoring categories for the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard are insurance and interest.

These factors are weighted 70% to the highest scoring factor and 30% to the second highest score to get an overall review score.

This weighting allows us to judge cards on their merits and the customers they are designed for.

For the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard the most important factors for scoring this card are its insurance and interest.

Rewards

With the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard, here’s the rates at which you earn rewards for different spending categories per dollar you spend:

Bills0.083 miles
Pharmacy0.083 miles
Gas0.083 miles
Groceries0.17 miles
Restaurants0.083 miles
Specific Stores0.25 miles
Travel0.083 miles
All Other Spend0.083 miles

Calculating your annual rewards

We estimate that spending $2,000 per month with the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard would earn $271 in rewards over the year.

Our performance testing research uses an accurate estimation of the average Canadian households spending patterns to predict the rewards a card will earn.

We found that you’d earn this per category:

Groceries$102
Specific Stores$30
All Other Spend$139

Our study investigating the value found that each dollar spent on the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard is worth up to $0.10, depending on how you redeem.

This $271 in rewards value puts the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard in the bottom 40% of credit cards in Canada based on rewards earned.

The average credit card in our database earns $337 in rewards for the same spend that the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard earns $271 in rewards value.

We can compare this card to other options by looking at the earn rate by category.

This earn rate is the percentage return that you would get when you spend on this card, assuming you redeem at the predicted maximum value.

For example, if a card earned 5 points per dollar on gas and each point is worth up to $0.02, then the earn rate is 5 points multiplied by $0.02 each, divided by the dollar you spent.

In this example, that’s a 10% earn rate on gas.

SpendThis CardAverage
Bills0.83%1.25%
Pharmacy0.83%1.17%
Gas0.83%1.48%
Groceries1.70%1.71%
Restaurant0.83%1.53%
Store2.50%1.94%
Travel0.83%1.19%
Other0.83%1.08%
Above, we’ve calculated the earn rate for the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard for every spend category and compared it to the average for all Canadian credit cards.
Redemption methodAnnual rewards
Transfer to partner airlines$271
Transfer to partner hotels$266
Merchandise$258
Car rentals$271
Vacations$299
Attractions$293
Cash rewards$271

For an annual spend of $24,000, we estimated annual rewards value at up to $271.

That’s equivalent to a 1.13% return on spending.

The BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard has an annual fee of $120. After deducting this, we predicted net annual rewards of $151.

This puts it in the bottom 30% of credit cards for net rewards after fees.

In comparison, the average card earns net annual rewards of $254.

Fees

The BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard has a $120 annual fee.

The average card charges $85. So, the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard is in the top 30% of cards based on the cost of the annual fee.

Perks

We manually review the perks of each credit card to determine how they compare to other cards.

The BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard scored a 1.9 out of 5 for perks, putting it in the top 40% of cards.

The average card scores 1.6 out of 5 for perks.

Interest Rates

Purchase20.99%
Cash Advance23.99%
Balance Transfer22.99%

The average (median) credit card has a purchase interest rate of 19.99% and so the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard charges 1% more than the average.

For cash advances it costs 23.99% compared to the average of 19.96%.

Testing the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard with a $2,000 starting balance, you can see in the graph how the 1% more in interest rates impacts the interest over a year, compared to the average card.

Insurance coverage

InsuranceThis CardAverage
Extended Warranty1 year1 year
Purchase Protection90 days90 days
Travel Accident$500,000$500,000
Emergency Medical Term15 days15 days
Trip Cancellation$2,500$1,500
Trip Interruption$2,000$2,000
Flight Delay$500$500
Baggage Delay$200$500
Lost or Stolen Baggage$750$1,000
Rental Car Theft & DamageYesNo
Rental Car Personal Effects$1,000$1,000
Rental Car Accident$200,000$200,000
Hotel Burglary$500$1,000
Personal Effects Insurance$750$750

We scored it 5.0 out of 5 for insurance.

It offers 14 types of insurance, whereas the average card has 5 types of coverage.

Approval and qualifying

Do I qualify?
Estimated Credit Score560 – 659
Personal Income$80,000
Household Income$150,000
Fees
Annual Fee$120
Extra Card Fee$0
Card typeMasterCard

We scored it 3.5 out of 5 for approval.

We predict that you will require a credit score of at least 560 to qualify for the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard, while the average card requires 652 to qualify.

This puts it in the top bottom 30% of cards by approval difficulty.

The personal income requirements are $80,000, while the average card requires $23,896.

This puts it in the top 10% of cards by the income required to qualify.

The BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard is a popular travel rewards credit card in Canada that allows cardholders to earn Air Miles on their everyday purchases. This review will discuss the earning potential of the card, four benefits, two drawbacks, and other relevant information to help Canadians decide if this card is the right fit for them.

Earning potential with the card

The BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard earns 1 Air Mile for every $10 spent on all eligible purchases, with no limits or caps on how many miles you can earn. This straightforward rewards structure does not have any specific bonus categories for higher earning rates in dining, travel, or grocery spending.

Benefits

  1. Generous Welcome Bonus: One of the first major advantages of this card is its substantial welcome bonus. New cardholders often receive a generous bonus of Air Miles after meeting a minimum spending requirement within a specific timeframe.

    This provides an excellent head start for cardholders in accumulating Air Miles for their future travel needs.
  2. Comprehensive Insurance: The second major advantage of this card is its comprehensive travel insurance coverage. Cardholders receive trip cancellation, trip interruption, flight delay, baggage loss, and travel medical insurance.

    This can provide peace of mind while traveling and potentially save cardholders from needing to purchase separate coverage.
  3. Lounge Access: Another advantage of this card is the complimentary membership to MasterCard’s Airport Experiences by LoungeKey, granting access to over 1000 airport lounges worldwide.

    Some conditions may apply, such as lounge visits may be charged a reduced fee, but it provides a valuable benefit to frequent travelers looking for a little extra comfort and exclusivity while waiting for their flights.
  4. Priority Boarding: The fourth major advantage of this card is the priority boarding on Air Canada flights for cardholders and companions when redeeming Air Miles. This perk allows for more travel convenience and can make the flight experience more enjoyable.

Drawbacks

  1. High Annual Fee: A significant drawback of the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard is its $120 annual fee. While it may be justified for many based on the card’s benefits, infrequent or budget-conscious travelers may struggle to recoup the cost of the card through its perks and rewards program.
  2. High Income Requirement: Another drawback of this card is its relatively high income requirement for eligibility.

    Applicants are required to have a minimum annual individual income of $80,000 or a combined household income of $150,000 to qualify for this card. This can be a limitation for potential users who do not meet these income thresholds.

Additional information

The BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard charges a 2.5% foreign transaction fee on international purchases, which can add up quickly for those who frequently travel or shop abroad. Prospective cardholders should consider their spending habits and weigh this factor against the card’s other benefits when making their decision.

In conclusion, the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard is an attractive option for Canadians who frequently travel and can make the most of its various benefits.

The card’s straightforward rewards structure and additional perks cater to frequent travelers, but the annual fee and income requirements should be taken into account when considering if this card is the right choice for you.

Interested in other credit cards? If the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard credit card isn’t perfect for you, you might want to consider the BMO CashBack MasterCard for Students. Plus, many Canadian’s that like the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard like the BMO Cashback MasterCard, and the BMO Rewards MasterCard.

FAQ

With the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard, you can redeem your points for a variety of rewards as part of the AIR MILES Reward Program. These include:

  • Flights: Redeem your AIR MILES for flights within Canada or to other destinations around the world.
  • Merchandise: Use your points to get a wide range of products, such as electronics, home appliances, and more, through the AIR MILES catalogue.
  • Gift Cards: Choose from various retailers and restaurant gift cards to use at your favorite stores and dining establishments.
  • Attractions & Entertainment: Redeem AIR MILES for movie tickets, amusement park passes, concert tickets, and other forms of entertainment.
  • Hotels & Car Rentals: Use your points to book hotel stays and car rentals, both within Canada and internationally.
  • Travel Insurance: Get coverage for trip cancellation, luggage loss, medical emergencies and more when you redeem AIR MILES for travel insurance.

The BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard credit card charges a foreign transaction fee of 2.5% for transactions made in a foreign currency. This means that when you make a purchase in a currency other than Canadian dollars, an additional 2.5% of the transaction amount will be added as a fee.

The BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard credit card has a minimum income requirement of $80,000 for an individual applicant or $150,000 for a household.

Key benefits

  • 3,000 Air Miles welcome bonus upon first purchase
  • 1 Air Mile earned for every $10 in eligible expenditures
  • First-year annual fee waiver ($120 savings)
  • Inclusive travel insurance package
  • Complimentary MasterCard Airport Experiences by LoungeKey access
  • North American Air Miles flight discount of 15%
  • Unrestricted reward flights with zero blackout dates
  • Minimum income prerequisites: $80,000 individual or $150,000 household
  • Less advantageous for infrequent travelers
  • Diminished benefits for non-Air Miles Rewards enthusiasts
  • $120 yearly fee after initial waiver
  • Potential for superior rewards rates with alternate credit cards
  • Scant cashback or statement credit offerings

About The Author