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Platinum, Gold and Black Credit Cards Comparison

Get exclusive benefits, but watch out for the high annual fees.

Platinum, gold and black credit cards are often considered premium options with exclusive benefits. However, this largely depends on the card issuer. Some cards carry the premium name while having a limited range of special perks and benefits.

On the other hand, American Express and other providers like Mastercard have designed specific cards for individuals who are large spenders. These cards have high annual fees and interest rates and are a step up from standard offers. They offer features such as higher credit limits, more reward points and a wide range of complimentary extras.

In the guide below, we’ll walk you through the benefits and costs of these 3 premium choices and show you some of the top options available on the Canadian market today.

How we chose the top credit cards

We’ve chosen the cards on this page based on the providers available through Finder. These cards are not representative of the entire market. Our top platinum, gold and black cards offer high value in the form of rewards points, cash back, signup bonuses, balance transfer offers, earnings flexibility and exclusive perks like travel discounts and complimentary insurance. We’ve also considered annual fees and balance transfer fees.

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

Top platinum cards

Best for travel: The Platinum Card from American Express

The Platinum Card from American Express

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The Platinum Card from American Express is an engraved metal charge card with a hefty annual fee of $799 – but the benefits can far outweigh the costs. Note that this is a charge card, not a regular credit card, so you must pay off the balance in full every month or a 30% interest rate will apply.Access a $200 Annual Travel Credit through American Express Travel Online or through Platinum Card Travel Service. Plus, enjoy complimentary access to airport lounges worldwide. In addition, enjoy a $200 Annual Dining Credit at some of Canada’s best restaurants and unlock $200 or more in additional value with Member extras.

Best for Air Miles rewards: American Express AIR MILES Platinum Credit Card

American Express AIR MILES Platinum Credit Card

Take your AIR MILES rewards to the next level with the American Express AIR MILES Platinum Credit Card. Earn 1 AIR MILE for every $5 spent on eligible food, drink, gas and transit purchases (up to an annual spend of $30,000), and earn 1 AIR MILE for every $10 spent on all other eligible purchases (and after the $30,000 annual spend)

Referring a friend or family member gets you rewards too. Pay 20.99% APR on regular purchases and 21.99% APR on cash advances. Besides a suite of travel benefits and perks, you could also be eligible for an attractive signup offer. N/A

Top gold cards

Black credit cards in Canada

A black credit card is a super-premium, top-tier credit card that offers more benefits than gold or platinum credit cards. The use of the term “black” for this type of credit card refers to the level of the account and is considered the best you can get.

You have to be invited by the provider to apply for most of these cards, and there are high minimum income and spending requirements. Some cards even require you to invest as much as $1 million with the provider. Learn more about black credit cards in Canada in our detailed guide.

We’ve lined up some of the best alternatives to black credit cards below. These cards are easier to qualify for and have lower annual fees ranging from $120-$899. However, you’ll still get to enjoy great benefits.

Best for earning rewards: American Express Cobalt Card

American Express Cobalt Card

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The American Express Cobalt Card boasts a wide suite of benefits and a powerful rewards program that lets you redeem points for travel, merchandise, Amazon.ca purchases, gift cards and statement credit. Earn 5x the points on eligible eats and drinks in Canada, including groceries and food delivery (spend cap applies), 3x the points on eligible streaming subscriptions in Canada, 2x points on eligible ride shares, transit & gas in Canada, 1 additional point on eligible hotel and car rental bookings via American Express Travel Online, and 1x point for every $1 in purchases everywhere else.

Enjoy complimentary travel insurance, car rental benefits, protection on your purchases and a generous signup bonus. Earn up to 15,000 Membership Rewards points in your first year. Earn 1,250 Membership Rewards points for each monthly billing period in which you spend $750 in purchases. That’s up to $150 towards a weekend getaway or concert tickets.

Best for Air Miles perks: American Express AIR MILES Reserve Credit Card

American Express AIR MILES Reserve Credit Card

If you’re looking for a card that lets you earn travel rewards, the American Express AIR MILES Reserve Credit Card could be for you. The $299 annual fee can be more than offset by its complimentary flight offer and accelerated AIR MILES earn rates. Earn 1 AIR MILE for every $10 spent on purchases at eligible stand-alone grocery stores, gas stations and drugs stores in Canada, as well as eligible AIR MILES partners, and earn 1 AIR MILE for every $15 spent on all other eligible purchases elsewhere.

What to consider before applying for a platinum, gold or black credit card

The benefits of a platinum, gold or black credit card are only worth it if they offer more value than the costs that come from any interest charges or annual fees. Consider the following questions to help you find options that work for you.

  • How often do you use your credit card? These cards have high annual fees and are meant for big spenders. If that’s not you, a no-annual-fee card could be a better choice.
  • How much do you spend on your credit card? If you’re considering a rewards option, you should make sure the value of the points you earn outweighs the cost of the annual fee.
  • How many premium card features will you actually use? Be realistic about which benefits you’ll use so you can find a card that provides value based on your spending habits and circumstances.
  • Do you carry a credit card balance? You could end up paying hundreds of dollars in interest and fees every year if you carry a balance using a gold, platinum or black card as most have high standard interest rates. You might want to consider a low interest rate option instead.
  • Do you have an excellent credit history and credit score? These credit cards all require good to excellent credit history. If you have black marks on your credit file, such as late payments or defaults, you may not be eligible to apply for a gold, platinum or black credit card.

Compare platinum, gold and black credit cards

Name Product Welcome Offer Rewards Purchase Interest Rate Annual Fee Min. Credit Score Description
Scotiabank Gold American Express Card
40,000 points
Up to 6 points per $1 spent
20.99%
$120
Min. recommended credit score: 700
Earn up to 40,000 bonus Scene+ points in your first year (that's up to $650 towards travel). Apply by July 1, 2024.
The Platinum Card from American Express
100,000 points
Up to 2x points per $1 spent
Due in Full balances must be fully paid each month or 30% interest applies. The regular interest rate for Flexible Payment Option balances is 20.99%. Conditions apply.
$799
Min. recommended credit score: 700
Earn up to 100,000 Membership Rewards points - that’s up to $1,000 towards a weekend away.
Business Platinum Card from American Express
120,000 points
1.25 points per $1 spent
20.99% - 28.99%
$799
Min. recommended credit score: 700
Earn a Welcome Bonus of 120,000 Membership Rewards points. Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards points after you charge $15,000 in net purchases to your card in your first 3 months. Plus, earn 40,000 points when you make a purchase between 14 and 17 months of cardmembership. That’s up to $1,200 in statement credit that can be reinvested in your business.
American Express Business Gold Rewards Card
110,000 points
1 point per $1 spent
20.99% - 28.99%
$199
Min. recommended credit score: 700
Earn up to 110,000 Membership Rewards points. Earn a Welcome Bonus of 70,000 points after spending $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months. Plus, earn 10,000 bonus points when you charge $20,000 in net purchases to your card each calendar quarter (that's a total of 40,000 points a year).
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Bottom line

If you have an excellent credit score, high income and you intend to use the additional perks, platinum, gold or black cards can be a solid option.

However, if you think the annual fee is too high or if you have other options in mind, compare other credit cards to find something that’s right for you.

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