CreditCardWoman_GettyImages_250x250

Compare platinum, gold and black credit cards

From higher points per dollar earn rates and airline lounge passes to sky-high credit limits, reward your spending with exclusive benefits when you use a premium credit card.

Platinum, gold and black credit cards are premium credit card options that offer a range of exclusive benefits. Designed for people who spend a lot of money on their credit card, these cards are a step up from standard offers, with features such as higher credit limits, more reward points per dollar spent and a wide range of complimentary extras.

However, along with the perks and prestige, platinum, gold and black credit cards often have annual fees and interest rates that are much higher than standard credit card options.

In our guide, we look at both the benefits and costs of these three premium choices so that you can find the credit card that’s right for your needs.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

The Platinum Card® from American Express

  • Get up to $200 bonus travel credit every year.
  • Receive 50,000 bonus Membership Rewards points when you spend $3,000 within the first three months of membership.
Read less
Read more

Scotiabank Gold American Express Card

Scotiabank Gold American Express Card

  • Get 15,000 bonus Scotia Rewards points with min. spend of $1,000 on eligible purchases within the first 3 months of membership. Offer ends 30 June 2019.
  • Earn 4 Scotia Rewards points per $1 on the first $50,000 annual spend on eligible purchases.
Read less
Read more
Promoted

Compare platinum, gold and black credit cards

Name Product Welcome Offer Purchase Interest Rate Cash Advance Rate Annual Fee
Offers 40,000 bonus Aeroplan Miles when you spend $3,000 within the first three months.
N/A
N/A
$499
Get free annual partner ticket and unlimited access to Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounges as well as Air Canada priority check-in.
Receive 50,000 bonus Membership Rewards points when you spend $3,000 within the first three months of membership.
N/A
N/A
$699
Earn 3 Membership Rewards points for every $1 spent on eligible dining, 2 points on eligible travel purchases and 1 point on all other spend.
Receive 2,000 bonus AIR MILES Reward miles when you spend $1,500 within the first three months of membership.
19.99%
22.99%
$65
Offers 1.99% balance transfer rate in the first 6 months. No balance transfer fee upon application.
Receive 30,000 bonus Scotia Rewards points upon first eligible purchase within the first two months. Ends 30 June 2019.
19.99%
22.99%
$399
Earn 4x Scotia Rewards points per $1 spent at grocery stores, gas stations, dining and entertainment purchases.
Receive 40,000 points when you spend $5,000 within first three months of membership.
N/A
N/A
$499
Earn 1.25 points for every dollar you spend with no limit to the number of points you can accumulate.

Compare up to 4 providers

Name Product Welcome Offer Purchase Interest Rate Cash Advance Rate Annual Fee
Get 15,000 bonus Scotia Rewards points with min. spend of $1,000 within the first 3 months. Ends 30 June 2019.
19.99%
22.99%
$99
Earn 4 Scotia Rewards points per $1 on the first $50,000 annual spend on eligible purchases.
Offers 150 AIR MILES Reward Miles when you spend $1,000 within the first 3 months of membership.
19.99%
22.99%
$0
Earn 1 mile for every $15 you spend at official sponsors and 1 mile for every $20 you spend anywhere else.
Receive 25,000 bonus Membership Rewards points when you spend $1,500 within the first three months of membership.
N/A
N/A
$150
Earn 2 points for every dollar you spend on eligible travel and purchases and 1 point for every dollar you spend elsewhere.
Offers 15,000 bonus Aeroplan Miles when you spend $1,500 within your first 3 months of membership.
N/A
N/A
$120
Earn 1 Aeroplan Mile for every dollar you spend up to $10,000 and 1.25 Aeroplan Miles for every dollar spent over $10,000 per year.
Receive 5,000 bonus Scotia Rewards points upon first eligible purchase within the first 2 months. Ends 30 June 2019.
19.99%
22.99%
$110
Get 5% cash back on travel purchases via Scotia Rewards Travel Service and earn 1 Scotia Rewards point for every $1 spent on daily purchases.
Offers 30,000 bonus points when you spend $5,000 within the first three months of membership.
N/A
N/A
$250
Earn one point for every dollar spent and one additional point for every dollar spent at three eligible merchants of your choosing.

Compare up to 4 providers

Finder Canada does not currently have any black credit cards available to compare. This table will be added when they become available.

What’s the difference between platinum, gold and black credit cards?

While platinum, gold and black credit cards are all premium options, each represents a different level of status and service. Gold credit cards are a step up from standard cards, platinum credit cards are above gold, while black credit cards sit at the top of the pack and tend to be unobtainable for most consumers in Canada (due to incredibly high spend and income requirements).


Gold credit cards

Gold credit cards are considered the “entry level” option for premium credit cards and are designed to suit people who are interested in getting more features and benefits, but who don’t want to pay much more in annual fees than they would for a standard credit card.

Some of the features of gold credit cards include:

  • Complimentary travel insurance
  • Complimentary purchase protection insurance
  • More reward points per dollar than standard cards
  • Higher point caps than standard cards
  • Annual fees ranging from $0 to $180 (with first year rebate offers)
  • Higher credit limits

Gold credit cards have slightly higher income and credit history requirements than standard cards – but not as high as those for platinum or black credit cards.


Platinum credit cards

Platinum credit cards build on the benefits offered by gold credit cards by providing a wider range of features with more flexibility. They are designed for people who regularly pay with their credit cards, and want to be rewarded for it in a variety of different ways.

Some of the features of platinum credit cards include:

  • Complimentary international travel insurance with broader coverage, such as car rental insurance
  • Complimentary purchase protection insurance
  • More reward points per dollar spent than gold cards and higher reward points caps
  • Personal concierge services
  • Much higher credit limits
  • Annual fees ranging from $0 to $700

Some platinum credit cards may also provide other spending benefits for customers, including no international transaction fees for purchases made overseas or online with an international retailer.

The minimum income requirements for platinum credit cards also tend to be higher in comparison to gold cards. While some platinum options have minimum income requirements as low as $30,000, most are around $40,000 and higher.


Black credit cards

Black credit cards are considered the ultimate in premium credit cards, with the highest level of service and the widest range of benefits. Getting a black credit card in Canada is very difficult: you typically have to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars a year on plastic and have an income to match. To provide an example, one of the best known black credit cards is the American Express Centurion. Just to get an invitation to apply for this card, you’ll need to spend upwards of US$250,000 a year on your current Amex card. For now, Canadians patiently wait for an everyday black credit card to enter the market.

Some of the features of black credit cards include:

  • The highest number of points per dollar for reward programs
  • Complimentary airport transfers
  • Flight upgrades
  • Dedicated travel booking services
  • A personal concierge service
  • A personal shopper
  • Invitations to exclusive events or promotions
  • Higher credit limits (sometimes up to $50,000 or higher)
  • Annual fees ranging from $700 to $5,000+

Black credit cards are designed for high earners and big spenders who pay with plastic very regularly. As such, the minimum income requirements for these cards is usually into the hundreds of thousands a year. You also typically need an excellent credit history to get a black credit card.


How to choose 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. Asking the following questions before choosing which type of card to get will help you find options that work for you.

  • How often do you use your credit card? Premium gold, platinum and black credit cards are designed for people who regularly use a credit card, and their annual fees and credit limits reflect that. Many of the complimentary extras available on these cards, such as travel insurance, also require you to pay with your credit card in order to activate them. If you don’t use a credit card very often, you might want to consider a low rate or no annual fee option instead.
  • 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. For more information, check out our guide on calculating the value of rewards points.
  • How much money do you earn? Platinum and black credit cards typically have higher minimum income requirements than standard credit cards. Gold cards have generally low income requirements in Canada, however you should still consider the need to pay for a card if you can’t reap its benefits
  • How many premium card features will you actually use? Complimentary extras can help offset the cost of a credit card, but only if you use them. When considering different cards, make sure you’re realistic about which benefits you will use so that you can find a card that provides value based on your spending habits and circumstances.
  • Do you carry a credit card balance? Some gold, platinum and black credit cards have standard interest rates. This means you could end up paying hundreds of dollars in interest every year when you carry a balance on one of these cards. If you don’t pay your account off in full each month, you may want to consider a premium credit card that has a low ongoing interest rate. Find low interest rate cards in our guide.
  • Do you have an excellent credit history and credit score? These credit cards all require good to excellent credit history. If you have 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.

Case study: Natasha chooses between a gold and platinum credit card

blondie-on-laptop-with-creditcard

Natasha is interested in getting a premium credit card to earn rewards points. She immediately recognizes that she doesn’t earn enough to receive an invitation to apply for a black credit card, so she will choose between a gold or platinum card. To help her make a decision, Natasha decides to compare a credit card from each of these categories.

Card APR Annual fee Points per $ Min.income Additional benefits
Scotiabank Gold American Express Card 19.99% $99 1–4 points per $1 spent $12,000 15,000 welcome bonus points, travel and car rental insurance coverage, and access to concierge services and airport lounges.
American Express Platinum Card This is a charge card and the balance must be paid in full each month. $699 1–3 points per $1 spent. Not listed. 50,000 welcome bonus points, $200 in annual credit, airport lounge access, concierge and dining program, car rental, travel, medical and emergency insurance and much more.

With these details in mind, Natasha considers her own circumstances and spending habits:

  • She regularly uses a credit card for everyday purchases.
  • She spends around $5,000 per month on her credit card.
  • Her annual salary is $85,000.
  • She takes one overseas vacation per year.
  • She aims to pay her balance in full each month.
  • Her credit score is excellent.

Since Natasha meets the spend requirement for both credit cards, she could potentially be eligible for both. The Scotia card allows her to earn more points on everyday expenses such as gas, groceries, dining and entertainment, while the Amex offers less points for specific categories such as dining and travel. Natasha only goes overseas once a year so she decides to go for the much cheaper Scotiabank Gold American Express Card. Had she travelled more regularly throughout the year, she would have chosen the powerful American Express Platinum Card.

Premium credit cards unlock a whole new world of potential value through features such as higher credit limits, greater rewards, complimentary insurance, travel perks and more. So now that you know the differences between gold, platinum and black credit cards, you can choose the right credit card for your financial circumstances and start comparing cards to find a great option for you.

Frequently asked questions about gold, platinum and black credit cards

Was this content helpful to you? No  Yes
Back to top

Read more on this topic

Go to site