The MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus® Mastercard® is a straightforward card that offers accelerated rewards accrual on common purchases for the average consumer, as well as a solid flat rate on everything else, and exemption from an annual fee. A nice introductory bonus adds further value.

For people who want to earn points without modifying their shopping habits, and not be overly restricted in how they redeem their rewards, this card from MBNA is worth considering.

Pros and cons

Pros

Pros

  • No annual fee

  • Accelerated rewards on groceries, restaurants, and more

  • Simple point structure with flexible redemption options

  • Generous introductory bonus of up to 10,000 points

  • No cap on total points earned

Cons

Cons

  • Lower cash back redemption rate compared to designated cash back cards

  • Limited benefits beyond rewards

  • Points system may not appeal to cash back enthusiasts

  • Higher earning categories have a spending cap of $10,000 annually

  • Better suited for travel rewards than cash back

MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus® Mastercard® structure

The MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus® Mastercard® accrues 1 point per $1 spent on any eligible purchase, anywhere. Cardholders won’t find themselves limited in what counts as ‘eligible’, as it’s loosely defined as anything that isn’t a cash-like transaction (cash advances, balance transfers, returns, etc.). To accelerate these constant earnings, the card also earns 2 MBNA Rewards points per $1 spent on charges in a number of categories: groceries, restaurants, digital media, memberships and household utilities.

Cardholders should be aware that for each of these accelerated earning categories there’s an annual spending cap of $10,000—which is a high spending limit for a card with no annual fee. After cardholders reach $10K in spending annually in any of the above categories, they will earn 1 point per $1 in that category for the remainder of the year (though there is no limit to the total number of points that can be earned).

New cardmembers can earn 4 points†† for every $1 spent on eligible groceries, restaurants, digital media, memberships and household utilities during the first 90 days.

About MBNA rewards

MBNA Rewards points can be redeemed on virtually whatever the cardholder wants, including cash back against a statement, travel rewards (airfare, hotels, rental cars), gift cards, merchandise, and more. When redeeming MBNA Rewards points for travel, 100 points are worth $1. When redeeming points earned from the MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus® Mastercard®  for cash back against a statement, 200 points are worth $1. This relatively low cash back redemption rate may be a discouraging factor for those who prefer cash back, but if this is the case, getting a designated cash back card is advised anyway.

*Note that a better cash back redemption rate is available on points earned from the MBNA Rewards World Elite® Mastercard®.

Feature breakdown

  • Get up to 10,000 MBNA Rewards points†† as an introductory bonus (see details below)
  • $0 annual fee
  • Earn 4 MBNA Rewards points†† for every $1 spent on groceries, restaurants, digital media, memberships and household utilities for the first 90 days after opening your account
  • Earn 2 MBNA Rewards points on those categories afterward, up to $10,000 spent annually in each category
  • Earn 1 MBNA Rewards point for every $1 spent on all other eligible purchases
  • Insurance benefits

It’s worthwhile to mention the nice bonus MBNA provides new cardholders, who only have to meet relatively easy milestones in order to earn 10,000 additional points††. For making your first $500 in purchases (within the first 90 days), you’ll get 5,000 points††. Sign up for paperless e-statements and MBNA will give you another 5,000 points††.

Drawbacks

The MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus® Mastercard® could be thought of as a jack of all trades, and a master of none. This means that for cardholders who prefer cash back, for instance, there are stronger, more focused alternatives. Its point redemption value for cash back makes the card more useful for those who plan to redeem for travel.

Those interested in redeeming for cash back are encouraged to look at cards like the Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card, which offers 2% in cash back rewards for a customizable array of purchase categories.

Who’s the card for?

The MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus® Mastercard® is suitable for those who aren’t fond of paying an annual fee for the privilege of getting rewards points on their most common purchases, and who like to keep their options open for how they’ll redeem those rewards. Travellers might find it more valuable than comparable no-annual-fee travel rewards cards, such as the BMO Air Miles Mastercard, which has an accelerated earn rate in only one purchase category (travel) and earns rewards that are only spendable at Air Miles partners.

, ††, , ***, Terms and Conditions apply.

This offer is not available for residents of Quebec.

Sponsored advertising. MBNA is a division of The Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD) and TD is not responsible for the contents of this site including any editorials or reviews that may appear on this site. For complete information on this MBNA credit card, please click on the “Apply Now” button.

The Toronto-Dominion Bank is the issuer of this credit card. MBNA is a division of The Toronto-Dominion Bank. ®MBNA and other-trademarks are the property of The Toronto-Dominion Bank.

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