Plastk Secured Credit Card Review
Premium rewards program: Earn rewards on your everyday purchases
Welcome bonus: It’s rare for a secured card to have a sign-up bonus, but this card starts you off with 5,000 points (worth $20)
Easy approval process, even for people with bad/low credit scores
Free monthly credit score update from Equifax
- Annual Fee: $120
- Minimum Income Eligibility Requirement: N/A
- Credit Score Required: N/A
- Welcome Offer: Sign up and earn 5,000 Rewards Points (worth $20), redeemable after the first 3 months
- Rewards: Earn 1 Rewards Point on every $1 in card purchases
- Other Perks: Referral bonus, monthly credit update from Equifax, 25-day grace period with no interest
- Interest on Purchases: 17.99% | Interest on Cash Advances: 21.99%
Launched in 2019, by Canadian startup Plastk Financial, the Plastk Secured Credit Card is Canada’s first secured credit card that lets you build up your credit rating while participating in a premium rewards program.
Cardholders use Plastk as they would any other credit card and every time they make a purchase, they earn Rewards Points that can be redeemed for a variety of rewards. Each cardholder’s payments are regularly reported to Canada’s two main credit bureaus, Equifax and TransUnion, so as long as you use the card responsibly you will build up your credit score. Cardholders also get a free monthly credit score from Equifax to help them stay on top of their financial health. Best of all, the Plastk Secured Credit Card is ideal for Canadians with no credit history or a low credit score who might have trouble getting approved for traditional credit cards because it’s a secured credit card and cardholders have to provide a deposit to fund the card.
Card Features & Benefits
- Premium reward program: Earn 1 point for every $1 you charge to the card. Points can be redeemed for a statement credit, merchandise, charity donations, gift cards, travel rewards and exclusive events. 2,500 Plastk Rewards Points = $10 (you need a minimum 2,500 points to redeem).
- Attractive welcome offer: New cardholders get 5,000 Rewards Points which works out to about $20.00 and can be redeemed after three months. Additionally, though the interest rate for the Plastk Secured Credit Card is 17.99%, new users will enjoy 0% APR for the first three months.
- Flexible deposit: Security deposits range from $300 to a maximum of $10,000. Your credit limit is determined by your security deposit amount.
- Lower than usual interest rates: The purchase interest APR is 17.99% and the cash advance APR is 21.99%.
- Generous grace period: There is a grace period of 25 days for purchases and three days for cash advances (a very rare feature among credit cards in Canada; normally you start paying interest immediately on cash advances).
- Free credit score update: Cardholders get access to a free monthly credit score update from Equifax.
- Fees: The Plastk Secured Credit Card comes with a $48 annual fee. Each month you will also pay a $6 monthly maintenance fee. In total the card will cost you $120 per year.
- Easy and fast approval: Can get approved even if no or low credit score. Applicants should know whether or not they’ve been approved within 24 hours.
- Referral program: For the first person you refer, you receive 2,500 points automatically. If you refer five people you get 10,000 points. If you refer 10 people you receive 50,000 points.
- Helps build credit score: Slowly build up your credit by using this card and paying your bills on time.
- Worldwide acceptance: Use your card anywhere you go.
- Handy mobile app: You can download a user-friendly app for both Android and iOS with easy-to-follow displays of your daily, weekly and monthly spending. This helps ensure you can keep track of your financial health and monitor spending and payments.
Pros and Cons
- Earn rewards on everyday spending — For every $1 you spend, you earn 1 Reward Point
- Solid welcome offer — 0% APR for 3 months and 5,000 Rewards Points
- Lower than average interest rates — After the 3-month intro period, the APR is 17.99%, instead of the usual 19.99%
- Gain control of your credit — Monthly credit score update provides important financial health insights
- No credit check — This card is ideal for those with low or no credit score/history
- High annual fee — the total fee is a combination of $48 (annual fee) and $6/per month (maintenance fee), which works out to $120/year
- High foreign transaction fee — if you don't spend in Canadian dollars you'll be charged a fee of 3.5%. This is one of the highest foreign transaction fees in Canada (average is 2.5%)
- Not available in Quebec
How the Plastk Secured Credit Card Compares
To get a sense of just how unique the Plastk Secured Credit Card is, it helps to compare it to another popular secured card, the Refresh Financial Secured Card.
Like the Plastk Secured Credit Card, the Refresh Financial Secured Card is also intended for Canadians who want to improve their credit score. This Visa card features a standard interest rate of 17.99% and doesn’t need a credit check as part of the application. The deposit needed to secure the Refresh Financial Secured Card is about the same, ranging from a minimum of $200 to a max of $10,000. If you’re really strapped for cash, the $200 minimum (compared to Plastk’s $300 minimum) could make the Refresh Financial Secured Card more accessible.
The Refresh Financial Secured Card also charges an annual fee, but at $48.95 a year ($12.95/annual fee + $3/month), but it’s significantly lower than the Plastk Secured Card. You can potentially offset the higher annual fee of the Plastk with the rewards you’ll earn depending on how frequently you use your card. Additionally, the Refresh Financial Secured Card doesn’t feature a bonus offer or a referral program, nor do cardholders get a free monthly credit score update. If you plan on using your secured credit card as your main card for all your everyday purchases, the Plastk Secured Credit Card may be a better option, as long as your accumulated rewards can offset the high annual fee.
Want to see all the full range of options? Check out the Best Credit Cards for Bad Credit in Canada.
There’s no denying that the Plastk Secured Credit Card is pretty revolutionary: It’s the first secured card that gives Canadians with low or no credit score the chance to earn rewards as they build up their credit rating. As long as you use the card responsibly and take full advantage of the rewards program so that you can offset the annual fee, the Plastk Secured Credit Card is a smart choice.
This post was not sponsored. The views and opinions expressed in this review are purely my own.