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Best medical credit cards

Give yourself some time to pay off medical bills with a low-interest rate credit card.

Receiving medical bills after undergoing procedures can feel overwhelming, especially if universal health care and private insurance won’t cover the full expense. A credit card can help offset your costs and give you some extra time to pay your bill.

Are medical credit cards offered in Canada?

In the United States, some credit card providers offer cards designed specifically to cover medical costs. These medical credit cards work a lot like regular credit cards, but you can only use them for certain products and services.

As of the time of writing, there are no medical credit cards offered in Canada. But there are a number of low-interest card options that can help ease the burden of covering your medical expenses by offering convenient repayment terms and good promotional offers.

*Disclaimer: How we chose the best credit cards to cover medical expenses

We’ve chosen the cards on this page based on the providers available through Finder. These cards are not representative of the entire market. We’ve narrowed down our top picks by considering the interest rates on offer for purchases, cash advances and balance transfers, as well as the annual fees, introductory offers and additional card benefits.

No single low rate credit card will be the best choice for everyone, so compare your options before picking your new card.

Best for low APR and low annual fee: BMO Preferred Rate Mastercard

BMO Preferred Rate Mastercard

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The BMO Preferred Rate Mastercard is a simple, no-frills credit card with a low interest rate of 12.99% for purchases and 15.99% for cash advances. You won’t earn any rewards points or cash back, but this card’s low rate can help you save money and pay down your balance faster.

Get a rate of 3.99% on balance transfers for 9 months with a 1% transfer fee. Plus, get the $20 annual fee waived in the first year. Plus, cardholders will get free Purchase Protection, Extended Warranty coverage and Zero Liability protection.

Runner-up for low APR and low annual fee: Scotiabank Value Visa Card

Scotiabank Value Visa Card

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With no cash back or rewards points, the Scotiabank Value Visa Card doesn’t come with a lot of extra perks. But it can be a great tool for saving money. Save on interest for 6 months by consolidating your higher-rate balances with the balance transfer offer, and get an on-going 12.99% interest rate on purchases, cash advances and balance transfers.

Best for balance transfer offer: Scotiabank Value Visa Card

Scotiabank Value Visa Card

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With no cash back or rewards points, the Scotiabank Value Visa Card doesn’t come with a lot of extra perks. But it can be a great tool for saving money. Save on interest for 6 months by consolidating your higher-rate balances with the balance transfer offer, and get an on-going 12.99% interest rate on purchases, cash advances and balance transfers.

Best for rewards on everyday purchases: Scotia Momentum Mastercard

Scotia Momentum Mastercard

The Scotia Momentum Mastercard doesn’t come with loads of perks, but it does boast a $0 annual fee and the chance to earn cash back rewards on your purchases. Get 1% cash back on all eligible gas station, grocery store and drug store purchases and recurring bill payments, and get 0.5% cash back on all other eligible purchases.

Enjoy peace of mind with Mastercard Zero Liability Protection, which protects you in the event your card is used fraudulently. Plus, rack up cash back rewards faster by getting an additional card with a $0 annual fee for a friend or family member. Get a 7.99% introductory interest rate on all eligible purchases for the first 6 months. Apply by July 4, 2022.

How to choose the best medical credit cards

If you decide to use a medical credit card instead of a standard credit card for your health and wellness needs, here’s what to keep an eye on:

  • Length of low-interest promotional period.
    Many cards advertise a low-interest promotional period where you have a certain number of months to pay off your balance with minimal interest before the regular interest rate kicks in. Pay attention to the revert interest rate of any card offering such a deal. If you can’t pay off the entire balance before the promotional period ends, you could be stuck with high fees.

    Should I use a credit card to pay for my medical bills?

    Credit cards can be helpful financial tools when you’re hit with big bills but don’t have the cash to pay it off right away. Here are the main advantages of using a credit card to cover medical expenses:

    • Quick access to medical care. You won’t have to gather funds right away to foot the bill for elective or mandatory procedures. Having more time to pay might enable you to get the treatments you need sooner rather than later.
    • Possible low-interest period. Some credit cards offer low intro APR promotions — a set period of time during which interest is deferred. Since most regular credit cards accumulate monthly interest, this could be a handy financial grace period so long as you’re able to pay in full before time is up.
    • Consolidating your medical expenses. If you like the idea of keeping all your medical expenses in one place, a credit card may be appealing, because you’ll see all your charges on a single statement. This could come in handy when you need a clear record of each specific charge for insurance purposes, budgeting, applying for government assistance or qualifying for medical tax credits.
    • Peace of mind. Even if you do have extra crash, using it to fund a big medical bill could put a strain on your immediate, day-to-day finances. Sometimes, the peace of mind that comes with buying a little extra time can help take the pressure off during the weeks and months that follow intensive medical treatment.

    What to watch out for when using a medical card

    As you can image, credit cards aren’t a no-strings-attached solution to medical debt. Before committing, consider these drawbacks:

    • It could damage your credit score. If your financial health is a fragile to begin with — that is, you have large amounts of debt and other credit cards with outstanding bills — opening up a medical credit card could ding your credit score. This could make it harder to get approved for car financing or a mortgage in the near future.
    • Variable interest rate credit cards can make planning difficult. Some low-interest credit cards have a variable interest rate, which means it could change over time based on the Bank of Canada’s prime rate. This might be a roadblock for people on a tight budget, or with limited financial wiggle room.
    • Deferred interest could cause financial hardship down the line. Even if a credit card has an interest-free period upfront, you could be faced with a large portion of accumulated interest if you haven’t paid the balance by the end of that period. And this is on top of the medical bills you already owe.
    • Most don’t come with perks or rewards. While you could potentially earn miles, points and cash back by paying for medical bills with a regular credit card, the least expensive credit cards usually don’t come with many perks or rewards.

    Compare credit cards for medical bills

    Check out the tables below to compare your many credit cards options. View cards based on balance transfer offers, cash back, no annual fees and more.

    Name Product Welcome Offer Rewards Purchase Interest Rate Annual Fee Min. Credit Score Description
    RBC Cash Back Mastercard
    N/A
    Up to 2% cash back
    19.99%
    $0
    Min. recommended credit score: 650
    Get 2% cash back on grocery store purchases, and up to 1% cash back on all other qualifying purchases and pre-authorized payments.
    BMO CashBack Mastercard
    5% cash back
    Up to 3% cash back
    19.99%
    $0
    Min. recommended credit score: 660
    Get 5% cash back on all eligible purchases in the first three months of card membership (up to max. spend of $2,500). Plus, get a rate of 1.99% on balance transfers with a 1% balance transfer fee for nine months.
    Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite Card
    35,000 points
    Up to 2 points per $1 spent
    19.99%
    $139
    Min. recommended credit score: 750
    Earn up to 35,000 bonus Scene+ points in your first year (that’s up to $350 towards travel). Apply by July 4, 2022.
    Tangerine World Mastercard
    10% cash back
    Up to 2% cash back
    19.95%
    $0
    Min. recommended credit score: 600
    Earn an extra 10% cash back (up to $100) on up to $1,000 of everyday purchases in the first 2 months Until May 31, 2022. Plus, get a 1.95% interest rate on balance transfers for the first 6 months (valid within the first 30 days of account opening, 1% transfer fee applies).
    Simplii Financial Cash Back Visa Card
    10% cash back
    Up to 4% cash back
    9.99% intro APR for the first 6 months, 19.99% thereafter
    $0
    Min. recommended credit score: 650
    Get 10% bonus cash back at eligible restaurants and bars for the first 4 months (up to $500 spend). Plus, get a 9.99% introductory annual interest rate on purchases for the first 6 months.
    RBC Avion Visa Infinite
    55,000 points
    Up to 1 point per $1 spent
    19.99%
    $120
    Min. recommended credit score: 650
    Get up to 55,000 Welcome Points. Get 35,000 points on approval and 20,000 bonus points when you spend $5,000 in your first 6 months. Apply by September 16, 2022.
    Scotiabank SCENE Visa Card
    5,000 points
    Up to 5 points per $1 spent
    19.99%
    $0
    Min. recommended credit score: 660
    Earn 5,000 bonus Scene+ points when you spend a minimum of $750 on eligible purchases in the first three months as a new SCENE Visa cardholder. Apply by August 31, 2022.
    OFFER
    Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card
    10% cash back
    Up to 2% cash back
    19.95%
    $0
    Min. recommended credit score: 600
    Earn an extra 10% cash back (up to $100) on up to $1,000 of everyday purchases in the first 2 months Until May 31, 2022. Plus, get a 1.95% interest rate on balance transfers for the first 6 months (valid within the first 30 days of account opening, 1% transfer fee applies).
    EXCLUSIVE
    Neo Financial Mastercard
    Get $25.00
    Average 5% cash back
    19.99% - 24.99%
    $0
    Min. recommended credit score: 600
    Get $25 when you sign up for the Neo Financial Mastercard. Plus, earn bonuses like 15% cashback on your first purchase at most partners, and earn an average of 5% cashback at thousands of partners and at least 1% cashback guaranteed.
    RBC Rewards+ Visa
    3,500
    Up to 2 points per $1 spent
    19.99%
    $0
    Min. recommended credit score: 650
    Earn up to 3,500 RBC Rewards points by going digital in the first 60 days.
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    Compare up to 4 providers

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    Bottom line

    Choosing the right credit card to pay for your medical needs can help take a load off. Depending on the card you choose, you can pay off your bill with little interest fees for up to 6 months or more. Be sure to pay off the full balance before the promotional period expires or heavy interest fees will start accruing from the day the period ends.

    Not sure a credit card is right for you? Explore medical loan options instead.

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