Visa > RBC

RBC ION Visa Review

4.25

$0

Annual Fee

$282

Annual Rewards

3,500 points

Intro Offer

$0

Annual fee

$282

Annual rewards

3,500 points

Intro offer


Pros


  • No annual fee
  • Earn RBC Rewards points on eligible purchases
  • Introductory 0% interest rate for the first six months on balance transfers
  • Free supplementary cards for additional users
  • Access to RBC Mobile Wallet for convenient payments

Cons


  • No bonus reward categories for higher earnings
  • Limited travel insurance coverage
  • No welcome bonus offer
  • Lower reward earning rate compared to other RBC credit cards
  • May not be suitable for individuals seeking cashback or air miles rewards

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 RBC ION Visa has earned a 4.25 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 RBC ION Visa are fees 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 RBC ION Visa the most important factors for scoring this card are its fees and interest.

Rewards

With the RBC ION Visa, here’s the rates at which you earn rewards for different spending categories per dollar you spend:

Bills1 point
Pharmacy1 point
Gas1.50 points
Groceries1.50 points
Restaurants1 point
Specific Stores1 point
Travel1 point
All Other Spend1 point

Calculating your annual rewards

We estimate that spending $2,000 per month with the RBC ION Visa would earn $282 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:

Gas$36
Groceries$90
All Other Spend$156

Our study investigating the value found that each dollar spent on the RBC ION Visa is worth up to $0.01, depending on how you redeem.

This $282 in rewards value puts the RBC ION Visa 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 RBC ION Visa earns $282 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
Bills1.00%1.25%
Pharmacy1.00%1.17%
Gas1.50%1.48%
Groceries1.50%1.71%
Restaurant1.00%1.53%
Store1.00%1.94%
Travel1.00%1.19%
Other1.00%1.08%
Above, we’ve calculated the earn rate for the RBC ION Visa for every spend category and compared it to the average for all Canadian credit cards.
Redemption methodAnnual rewards
Redeem for travel$164
Apply to statement credit$164
Charity$282
Gift cards$203
Merchandise$248
Transfer to WestJet$282
RBC financial products$234

For an annual spend of $24,000, we estimated annual rewards value at up to $282.

That’s equivalent to a 1.18% return on spending.

The RBC ION Visa has an annual fee of $0. After deducting this, we predicted net annual rewards of $282.

This puts it in the top 50% of credit cards for net rewards after fees.

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

Fees

The RBC ION Visa has a $0 annual fee.

The average card charges $85. So, the RBC ION Visa is in the bottom 50% 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 RBC ION Visa scored a 2.2 out of 5 for perks, putting it in the top 30% of cards.

The average card scores 1.6 out of 5 for perks.

Interest Rates

Purchase20.99%
Cash Advance22.99%
Balance Transfer22.99%

The average (median) credit card has a purchase interest rate of 19.99% and so the RBC ION Visa charges 1% more than the average.

For cash advances it costs 22.99% compared to the average of 19.96%.

Testing the RBC ION Visa 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

We scored it 0.0 out of 5 for insurance.

It offers 2 types of insurance, whereas the average card has 5 types of coverage.

Approval and qualifying

Do I qualify?
Estimated Credit Score760 – 900
Personal Income$0
Household Income$0
Fees
Annual Fee$0
Extra Card Fee$0
Card typeVisa

We scored it 2.5 out of 5 for approval.

We predict that you will require a credit score of at least 760 to qualify for the RBC ION Visa, while the average card requires 652 to qualify.

This puts it in the top top 10% of cards by approval difficulty.

The personal income requirements are $0, while the average card requires $23,896.

This puts it in the top 50% of cards by the income required to qualify.

We scored it 0.0 out of 5 for insurance.

It offers 2 types of insurance, whereas the average card has 5 types of coverage.

Approval and qualifying

Do I qualify?
Estimated Credit Score760 – 900
Personal Income$0
Household Income$0
Fees
Annual Fee$0
Extra Card Fee$0
Card typeVisa

We scored it 2.5 out of 5 for approval.

We predict that you will require a credit score of at least 760 to qualify for the RBC ION Visa, while the average card requires 652 to qualify.

This puts it in the top top 10% of cards by approval difficulty.

The personal income requirements are $0, while the average card requires $23,896.

This puts it in the top 50% of cards by the income required to qualify.

Interested in other credit cards? If the RBC ION Visa isn’t perfect for you, you might want to consider the RBC ION+ Visa. Plus, many Canadian’s like the RBC Visa Platinum card.

FAQ – RBC ION Visa

  • This versatile feature allows you to redeem Avion points to cover various expenses. You can use your points to pay bills, offset your credit card balance, or even send money to friends via Interac e-Transfer.
  • With a minimum redemption threshold of only $10, this option provides flexibility and convenience, allowing you to use points for immediate financial needs or everyday expenses.
  • Gift Cards: Redeem your points for gift cards from a variety of retailers, providing you with flexibility and choice for shopping or gifting.
  • Merchandise: You can exchange your points for a range of merchandise, from practical items to luxury goods, catering to different interests and needs.
  • Apple Products: For tech enthusiasts, the catalogue allows you to redeem points for the latest products from Apple, keeping you up-to-date with the newest technology.
  • Tech Products at Best Buy: Over 50,000 tech products are available at Best Buy, offering a vast selection of electronics and gadgets to satisfy your tech cravings.

The RBC ION Visa charges a foreign transaction fee of 2.5% on any purchases made outside of Canada or in a foreign currency. This means if you use the card for transactions while travelling or online shopping in non-Canadian currencies, you will incur an additional fee of 2.5% on those transactions.

No, this card has a 5 out of 5 rating for approval because there is no minimum income requirement.

Key benefits

  • Earn 5% cashback during your first three months, up to $100 in total rewards
  • 1.5% cashback rate with no caps on everyday purchases
  • Enjoy 4 complimentary Mastercard Airport Experience visits yearly
  • Access to a 24/7 concierge service for personalized assistance
  • Protection with extended warranty and purchase protection benefits
  • AVIS and Budget car rental discounts up to 25%
  • Out-of-Province/Country emergency medical coverage for trips up to 8 days
  • Delayed or lost baggage, personal effects, and trip cancellation/interruption insurance options
  • Worldwide common carrier accident protection and travel emergency medical insurance
  • Roadside support available through a complimentary membership in BMO Roadside Assistance
  • 1.99% APR on balance transfers for 9 months (3% transfer fee), then 22.99% APR applies
  • 19.99% annual interest rate on purchases
  • Expedited security line access at select Canadian airports with Mastercard®*Valet™ airport service

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