Reviewing the EQ Bank Mastercard: Get Cash Back and Avoid ATM Fees

EQ Bank has finally answered the call of its customers with the launch of the EQ Bank Mastercard. This prepaid card allows users to conveniently make in-store payments, withdraw cash from ATMs, earn cash back on purchases, and all this with no monthly fees. Let’s delve into the details of this new offering and see if it stacks up as a solid addition to your wallet.

EQ Bank Mastercard: An Overview

The EQ Bank Mastercard is a prepaid card that seamlessly integrates with EQ Bank’s flagship account, the Savings Plus Account. This high-interest savings account (2.50% to 4.00%*) boasts unlimited debit transactions and Interac e-Transfer capabilities.

Important Links
1. Top-Paying Careers in EDP Services
2. Well-Paid Jobs in California
3. Highest-Paying Careers in Life Insurance
4. High-Paying Jobs in Property Casualty Insurance for 2024

By adding the EQ Bank Mastercard to the mix, you can now access your savings directly at ATMs and earn 0.50% cash back on everyday purchases, making it a strong contender in the Canadian debit reward card market.

How to Apply for the EQ Bank Mastercard

Opening an EQ Bank Mastercard is a breeze. There are no fees associated with the card. Simply open an EQ Bank Personal Account and fund it by connecting your bank account with any Canadian financial institution. Once your account is set up, you can order a free EQ Bank Mastercard and activate it upon arrival.

It’s important to note that only the standard Personal Account or its Joint account variant qualifies for the prepaid card.

EQ Bank Mastercard Features: A Breakdown of the Benefits

The EQ Bank Mastercard offers a compelling package of features, making it an attractive option for everyday spending:

  • No Account Fees: There are zero monthly or annual fees associated with either the Savings Plus Account or the EQ Bank Mastercard, unlike some traditional prepaid cards that charge activation fees.
  • Earn Interest on Balance: Unlike most debit cards, the EQ Bank Mastercard allows you to earn interest on your card balance, currently at a rate of 2.50% (with the interest rate jumping to 4.00% if you set up a direct deposit). This eliminates the opportunity cost of holding funds on the card, allowing you to accrue interest while your money remains readily accessible.
  • Earn Cash Back on Purchases: EQ Bank Mastercard holders enjoy an unlimited 0.50% cash back on all purchases, both online and in-store. This feature puts the card amongst the top prepaid reward cards in Canada.
  • Free ATM Withdrawals: A significant advantage over traditional debit cards is that EQ Bank reimburses any ATM fees incurred in Canada. So, you can withdraw cash from any Canadian ATM without worrying about additional charges.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees: The EQ Bank Mastercard eliminates the need for a no-foreign-transaction-fee credit card, often burdened with annual fees. It waives the standard 2.50% foreign currency transaction fee and offers worldwide acceptance wherever Mastercard® is available (over 210 countries). You’ll only be subject to the standard Mastercard currency conversion rate when using the card abroad.
  • Mastercard Zero Liability Protection: Cardholders benefit from Mastercard’s Zero Liability policy, safeguarding them against unauthorized use or fraudulent charges.
  • Reloadable Functionality: Easily reload your card by transferring funds from your linked EQ Bank Savings Plus Account.

Downsides to Consider with the EQ Bank Mastercard

Reviewing the EQ Bank Mastercard: Get Cash Back and Avoid ATM Fees

While the EQ Bank Mastercard offers a plethora of benefits, there are a few limitations to keep in mind:

  • Quebec Residency Restriction: The EQ Bank Mastercard is not currently available to residents of Quebec.
  • Foreign ATM Fee Reimbursement Limitation: While ATM fees are reimbursed within Canada, the card does not offer reimbursement for ATM fees incurred abroad.
  • Transaction Limits: The EQ Bank Mastercard comes with specific transaction limits:
    • Maximum card balance: $10,000
    • Card transaction limit: $5,000
    • ATM transaction limit per withdrawal: $500
    • Maximum daily ATM withdrawal: $500
    • Daily maximum point-of-sale limit: $5,000
    • Maximum number of daily ATM withdrawals: Unlimited

EQ Bank Mastercard vs. The Competition: How Does it Fare?

Let’s see how the EQ Bank Mastercard stacks up against two of its leading competitors in the Canadian prepaid card market: KOHO Prepaid Mastercard and Neo Money Prepaid Mastercard.

  • EQ Bank Mastercard vs. KOHO Easy Mastercard:

The KOHO Easy Mastercard offers a slightly higher cashback rate of 1% on groceries, restaurant, and transportation purchases, with the potential to earn up to 5% cash back at partner stores. Additionally, it boasts a 5.00% interest rate on balances and features like free credit score checks and access to 0% APR cash advances. However, to avoid a $9 monthly fee, you need to set up a recurring direct deposit.

  • EQ Bank Mastercard vs. Neo Money Prepaid Mastercard:

The Neo Money prepaid card offers a more diversified cashback program, averaging 5% cash back at over 12,000 partner stores, and 1% cash back on groceries and gas, with a minimum guaranteed rate of 0.50% on all purchases (capped at $50 monthly).

It also allows for online payments and in-person transactions, similar to the EQ Bank Mastercard. Additionally, Neo Money supports free bill payments and Interac e-transfers. However, unlike the EQ Bank Mastercard with its interest-bearing balance, Neo Money offers a base interest rate of 0%.

Overall Take on the EQ Bank Mastercard

The EQ Bank Mastercard emerges as a strong contender in the prepaid card landscape, particularly for those seeking a versatile, all-in-one solution. Here’s a quick recap of its key strengths:

  • No monthly fees for either the card or the linked savings account.
  • Interest earned on the card balance eliminates the opportunity cost of holding funds on the card.
  • Unlimited 0.50% cash back on all purchases.
  • Free ATM withdrawals within Canada, with reimbursements for ATM fees charged by other banks.
  • Worldwide acceptance with no foreign transaction fees (subject to Mastercard currency conversion rates).

While the EQ Bank Mastercard might not offer the highest cashback rates compared to some competitors, it compensates with its combination of features, including free ATM withdrawals, interest on your balance, and no monthly fees. This makes it a compelling option for everyday spending, especially for those who prioritize convenience and managing their budget effectively.

Who Should Consider the EQ Bank Mastercard?

The EQ Bank Mastercard is a great choice for individuals who:

  • Already bank with EQ Bank or are considering opening an EQ Bank Savings Plus Account to take advantage of the high interest rate.
  • Prioritize a no-fee card with the convenience of ATM access and worldwide acceptance.
  • Value the ability to earn cash back on everyday purchases.
  • Are budget-conscious and want to avoid accumulating interest charges associated with credit cards.
Important Links
1. Worthy Great Grocery Apps for Canadians
2. Top Savings Account Deals in Canada for April 2024
3In 2024, How Much Wealth Do Canadians Have at Different Ages?
4. Universal Credit Loophole for £1500: What Is This Loophole? Who Got the Benefits? All News

Final Verdict

The EQ Bank Mastercard offers a well-rounded package for those seeking a feature-rich prepaid card with no hidden fees. With its combination of interest on your balance, cashback rewards, and free ATM withdrawals in Canada, the EQ Bank Mastercard is a solid choice for everyday spending and managing your finances effectively.

Leave a Comment