Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card Review

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CREDIT SCORE REQUIREMENTS: Credit Score requirements are based on Young and Thrifty's own research of approval rates; meeting the minimum score will give you the best chance to be approved for the credit card of your choice. ?
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Poor 500-599
Fair 660-689
Good 700-749
Excellent 741-900
Our Bottom Line:

The Tangerine Money-Back Mastercard is an excellent cash back credit card that also has no annual fee. Earn up to 2% unlimited cash back in up to two categories, and 0.5% cash back on everything else. Cash back is earned automatically and paid out monthly either to your credit card balance or redeemed into your savings account. Get a third 2% category if you have your Money-Back Rewards deposited into your Tangerine Savings Account.

Intro APR Purchases N/A
Intro Term Purchases N/A
Intro APR Balance Transfers 1.95%
Intro Term Balance Transfers 6 months
Regular APR 19.95%
Annual Fee $0
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About the Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card

Let’s face it: points and rewards are great, but cash is king. Tangerine is one of Canada’s best banks offering low-fees and high-interest rate savings accounts, and with its no annual fee Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card, it’s —dare we say it?—disrupting the market (in a good way). With a flexible program that allows cardholders to select their cash-back categories, options to increase earnings, and an accessible income threshold, there’s not much to prevent people from signing up for this no-fee credit card. The fact that this Tangerine credit card costs cardholders nothing to use makes it an absolute no-brainer.

Card Features & Benefits

When cardholders spend in Tangerine’s money-back categories, they earn 2% back in cash. The current welcome bonus is 10% cash back (up to $100 earned) in the first two months of card membership. Best of all, the cash back earned is automatic applied directly to either their credit card account or deposited into their Tangerine savings account. With the latter choice, users get a bonus third spend category at 2%—and users can change their categories as their needs changes. All other purchases earn 0.5% cash back.

  • Earn 2% cash back on two Tangerine spending categories
  • Earn 2% cash back on an additional spending category when you automatically have a credit applied to your Tangerine savings account
  • Earn 0.5% cash back on everything else
  • Automatic, monthly reimbursement to your credit card balance or savings account
  • No annual fee: Signing up for this card is virtually risk-free because it costs $0 to keep it in your wallet.  You’re essentially earning money by having it.
  • Purchase Assurance and Extended Warranty: Applicable to most new purchases made with this card, with a lifetime maximum of $60,000. Purchase Assurance may cover loss, damage, or theft, in excess of insurance, for 90 days. Extended Warranty can double the period for repairs up to an additional year.
  • Free additional cards for up to 5 authorized users.
  • This is a MasterCard product, so is widely accepted worldwide.
  • No limit on the amount of Money-Back Rewards you can earn.
  • You can change your categories any time after you activate your card — you’re never locked in!

Pro-tip: With a little bit of planning and strategy, you can extend Tangerine’s 2% cash-back categories into unlikely territory. If, for example, you choose the grocery category, you can also get 2% back on purchases at The Gap, iTunes, IKEA, and more. Just buy gift cards for these retailers at your grocery store. It all qualifies.

Pros and Cons of the Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card

Unlike points or other rewards, cash can be used for anything—including paying down your Tangerine credit card or building a savings account. Sweetening the pot, if you choose the latter you’ll get an additional rebate category. Just as attractive is the fully automatic, monthly reimbursement. This means cardholders have no points to keep track of, no extra paperwork or planning to do—their monthly earnings are simply applied to their Tangerine account. No annual fee and no earning caps make this a terrifically attractive card. Plus there’s a sign-up bonus for a limited time that lets you earn 10% cash back on your purchases (up to $1000) for the first two months.

To be honest, there aren’t a lot of drawbacks to the Tangerine Money-Back credit card, unless you count a lack of extras like travel insurance or partnership points and the 2.50% foreign transaction fees aren’t as good as the best no foreign transaction fee credit cards. But if you don’t care about those things, it’s not a deal breaker.

Pros

  • No annual fee
  • Earn cash back on categories of your choosing with no cap
  • Automatic reimbursement — Cash back is automatically deposited in your account each month
  • Enticing welcome offer — 10% cash back on your purchases for the first two months (up to $100 earned)

Cons

  • No travel insurance
  • No extra perks

How the Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card Compares 

Although there are a lot of no annual fee cash back cards on the market, the Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card is top of the class. The closest competition is arguably the SimplyCash™ Card from American Express. Both have no annual fee, but the earn rate is a touch different.

With Tangerine’s card, you can choose up to three categories where you’ll earn 2% cash back. All other purchases earn you 0.5% cash back. The SimplyCash™ Card from American Express gives you a straight 1.25% in cash back on all purchases.

Both have similar welcome bonuses, but Amex comes out just a touch ahead here since it has a higher cap of cash back you can earn. You’ll also get purchase assurance and extended warranty with both cards.

If you do most of your spending in three main categories, then go for the Tangerine card. However, if you think your overall spending is more beneficial with the 1.25% earned through the American Express Card, then go for that one.

 Tangerine Money-Back Credit CardSimplyCashTM Card from American Express
Welcome offer10% up to $100 earned10% up to $200 earned
Increased earn rate2% on up to 3 categoriesNone
Regular earn rate0.5%1.25%
Extra perksBalance transfer option, purchases assurance, extended warrantyExperiences, offers, travel accident, buyer’s assurance, purchase protection
Annual fee$0$0
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The Tangerine Money-Back Credit card vs. the Tangerine World Mastercard® 

While the two cards are quite similar in terms of earn rate, the Tangerine World Mastercard® offers some attractive additional perks, such as rental car collision damage insurance, mobile device insurance, and airport lounge access.

To upgrade you’ll have to meet the annual income threshold of $60,000 (individual) or $100,000 (household) or have total balances of $250,000 or more in Tangerine Savings Account(s) and/or Investment Fund Account(s).

Since there’s no fee to upgrade, it makes sense to get the Tangerine World Mastercard® if you’re eligible! Read our full review of the Tangerine World Mastercard® to learn more.

The Verdict: Is the Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card Worth It?

The Tangerine Money-Back credit card costs you nothing, earns you money on all spends with no caps, and automatically reimburses you. All things considered, this card is clearly a winner, and you’re actually earning a few bucks by putting this plastic in your wallet.

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