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If you’re already a Desjardins client, if you’re an active traveller, or if you’re looking for a comprehensive travel insurance package, the Desjardins Odyssey® World Elite® Mastercard might be a particularly good fit for you.
The card has an annual fee of $130, with supplementary cards costing an additional $40. However, the fee for supplementary cards is waived for Desjardins clients, and said clients will also benefit from further perks (read below for more details). The card may not come with a generous sign-up bonus—the carrot typically dangled by most high-end travel card issuers—but its core benefits will justify the annual fee for many Canadian travellers.
Basic rewards structure of the Desjardins Odyssey® World Elite® Mastercard
One thing that makes the Desjardins Odyssey® World Elite® Mastercard appealing is the fact that its rewards structure is easy to understand. Cardholders earn the following on all purchases:
- 1.5% in BONUSDOLLARS® on the first $20,000 spent annually
- 2% in BONUSDOLLARS® after spending $20,000 annually
If you’re a Desjardin Credit Union member, you get a special additional perk of 20% BONUSDOLLARS® (up to $200) on any annual BONUSDOLLARS® you’ve earned for the year. To qualify, you must pay at least the minimum payment listed on your credit card statement every month.
Let’s break that feature down with an example: if you charged $30,000 to your card throughout the course of a year and always paid your bill on time every month, you’d earn $600 in BONUSDOLLARS® for the year ($300 for the first $20,000 spent, $200 for the next $10,000 spent, and $100 from the special 20% bonus).
BONUSDOLLARS® act like cash back and can be used to redeem travel, show tickets, financial products, and merchandise. If you’re redeeming for travel, you don’t need to go through a specific portal. That means you can simply charge any travel purchases to your Desjardins Odyssey® World Elite® Mastercard and then have the points applied to your credit card statement. There are no blackout dates and you can even use your BONUSDOLLARS® to pay for public transportation passes.
What’s also unique about BONUSDOLLARS® is that you can use them to purchase a variety of financial products or services as long as they’re with Desjardins. That means you can use your BONUSDOLLARS® to top up your RRSP, RESP, or TFSA, pay for any home or auto insurance, or even pay down your mortgage.
Desjardins Odyssey® complete travel insurance package
The Desjardins Odyssey® World Elite® Mastercard easily ranks as one of the best travel insurance credit cards in Canada. When charging travel expenses to the card, cardholders under the age of 60 get the following insurance for an impressive 60 days:
- Emergency medical ($5,000,000 per person)
- Trip cancellation insurance ($2,500 per person)
- Trip interruption insurance (unlimited coverage)
- Common carrier accident ($1,000,000)
- Baggage insurance ($1,000 per person for theft or damage, $500 per person for delays)
Those aged 60+ still qualify for travel insurance for the following lengths of time:
- Ages 60 to 64: 31 days
- Ages 65 to 75: 15 days
- 75+: call Desjardins for a quote
Overall, the above coverage amounts/payouts and time lengths are top of class. It’s worth noting that no other credit card offers 60 days of travel insurance per trip for those between the ages of 55-59 so this card could be uniquely fitting if you happen to fall into that age range.
Other card perks
Besides its comprehensive travel insurance, the Desjardins Odyssey® World Elite® Mastercard has a few additional benefits that further justify its annual fee for some Canadians:
- Purchase protection and extended warranty
- Access to the Desjardins Odyssey® Lounge at Montréal–Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport
- Auto rental collision/loss damage insurance (48 days, up to the value of the car)
- Up to 20% off at participating Hertz locations worldwide
- Mobile device insurance
With the included mobile device insurance, your phone or tablet is insured up to two years from loss, theft, or damage. There is a deductible of $25-$100 and a 2% depreciation cost per month that needs to be factored in, but considering the cost of high-end mobile devices, this insurance could seriously come in handy. The card’s purchase protection is more standard, covering the loss or damage of items for 90 days from the purchase date. Extended warranty doubles the original manufacturer’s warranty for another year (also standard).
Although the card doesn’t come with any worldwide airport lounge access, cardholders are granted entry to an exclusive lounge at Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport, which might be particularly appealing for Quebecers.
The auto rental collision/loss damage insurance covers cardholders up to the actual value of the rental vehicle and is good for 48 days of continuous travel. This benefit pairs nicely with the up to 20% off discount at participating Hertz locations.
Who’s the card for?
If you value travel insurance or you’re already a Desjardins client, you may want to seriously consider the Desjardins Odyssey® World Elite® Mastercard. The annual fee of $130 is easily off-set by the combined value of the card’s rewards accrual rates, travel insurance package and mobile device insurance.