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RATESDOTCA'S 10th annual Best of Finance report: Canadians set to boost restaurant and travel spending, but not to pre-pandemic levels

By: PR Leap
( TORONTO, May 19, 2021 - A new survey from RATESDOTCA shows nearly three-quarters of Canadians (72 per cent) are planning to increase their monthly credit card spending in certain areas this year. The survey, conducted in mid-April by Leger on behalf of RATESDOTCA in conjunction with the brand's 10th annual Best of Finance report, finds Canadians are especially eager to resume spending on restaurants and travel once COVID-19 restrictions are lifted, though still shy of pre-pandemic levels.

"Canadians are keen to get out of their homes after more than a year of on-again-off-again lockdowns, but these results show we may not be ready for pre-pandemic spending patterns," said Jameson Berkow, managing editor of RATESDOTCA. "That makes it all the more important for Canadians to evaluate whether they are still using the right credit cards to suit their spending habits."

The most immediate priority appears to be dining, where four in ten Canadians (39 per cent) cut their monthly outlays by at least $50 during COVID-19 and 17 per cent cutting monthly restaurant spending by $200 or more. When restrictions lift, 33 per cent of respondents plan to boost their dine-in restaurant spending by at least $50, though only 7 per cent plan to boost their dine-out budgets by at least $200.

The survey shows that more than one in three Canadians (35 per cent) said their monthly travel spending fell by $200 or more during the pandemic; however, just one in five (22 per cent) plan to increase their monthly travel spending by a similar amount later in 2021.

The 10th annual Best of Finance report offers Canadians the best way to capitalize on plans to increase spending. Representing the longest-running and most comprehensive analysis of its kind, the report shows Canadians how much using the right credit card for the right purchases could be worth, from the best rewards card ($1,560 in first-year value*) to the best card for students ($364 in first-year value).

"Canadians have the opportunity to make the most out of their post-pandemic spending," added Berkow. "Smart credit card usage is extremely rewarding, so long as we match our lifestyle and spending habits to the right credit card and how we use it."

The survey also found that only 16 per cent of respondents citing a change in lifestyle or spending patterns as a reason to get a new card or replace an existing one. Canadians were much more likely to be enticed by an appealing welcome bonus or promotional offer, with 41 per cent saying that would make them consider getting a new credit card or replacing an existing card.

Some of the changes Canadians made to their monthly spending because of the pandemic are also likely to become permanent in the post-pandemic world. More than one third of Canadians (36 per cent) said they have increased their monthly stay-at-home spending (food delivery, streaming services, meal preparation services) during the pandemic, but only 15 per cent of respondents expect to reduce spending in that category once COVID-related restrictions are lifted. Nearly as many (14 per cent) plan to continue increasing their stay-at-home spending this year.

RATESDOTCA has ranked the best credit cards in Canada for 2021:
• Best overall rewards credit card: American Express CobaltTM Credit Card - winner for second year in a row!
• Best no-fee cash back credit card: BMO CashBack® Mastercard®
• Best no-fee travel credit card: MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus® Mastercard® - winner for second year in a row!
•Best overall travel credit card: CIBC Aventura® Infinite Card
• Best overall cash back credit card: Scotia Momentum® Visa Infinite Card
• Best low interest credit card: True Line® Gold Mastercard credit card
• Best balance transfer credit card: CIBC Select Visa® Card
• Best secured credit card for building credit: No Fee Home Trust Secured Visa Card
• Best credit card for young professionals: American Express Cobalt Credit Card - winner for second year in a row!
• Best student credit card: BMO CashBack® Mastercard for students
• Best credit card for earning travel points: American Express Cobalt Credit Card
• Best credit card with no foreign transaction fees for long-stay travelers: Scotiabank Gold American Express Card
• Best family credit card for gas and groceries: President's Choice Financial World Elite Mastercard
• Best credit card for staying home and ordering in: Scotiabank Gold American Express Card
• Best no-frills cash back credit card: SimplyCash Card from American Express

To review the full survey and report, visit RATESDOTCA.

*The first-year value is calculated based on RATESDOTCA's Best of Finance methodology, which assumes the cardholder spends an average of $2,000 a month on their card. The calculation includes all welcome bonuses and promotional offers at the time of publishing.

About Best of Finance 2021
The Best of Finance report has reviewed and assessed hundreds of credit cards since 2012. Winners are determined using the Best of Finance methodology. RATESDOTCA reviewed and analyzed 110 credit cards using 100+ data points over several weeks to determine the first-year value of each card.

About the Survey
An online survey of 1,440 Canadians who own a credit card was conducted by Leger from April 16-18, 2021, using Leger's online panel. The sample's ages ranged from 18 to 55+ years old. No margin of error can be associated with a non-probability sample (i.e. a web panel in this case). For comparative purposes, though, a probability sample of 1440 respondents would have a margin of error of ±2.6%, 19 times out of 20.

RATESDOTCA is Canada's leading rate comparison website that offers a quick and simple digital experience to compare the widest selection of insurance and money products in the market. Get a better rate on car, home, and travel insurance, mortgage, and credit cards all in one location. RATESDOTCA aims to help Canadians make better insurance and money decisions so they can save time and money to spend on what really matters to them. @RATESDOTCA

360 Adelaide Street West, Suite 100
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
M5V 1R7
+1 844-726-0907

Alex Jones, Proof Strategies Inc. for RATESDOTCA
(416) 969-2734

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