Mar 24 , 2010

BMO launches first World Elite MasterCard in Canada

TORONTO-- BMO Bank of Montreal has become the first Canadian bank to launch a World Elite MasterCard credit card.

MasterCard’s World Elite program ( offers a range of premier rewards to cardholders including exclusive access to tickets to popular concerts and theatre events, and luxury travel packages. Special offers with select partners include Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group and Fairmont Hotels and Resorts.

To complement the MasterCard World Elite benefits, BMO is also offering a proprietary rewards program for the new card. Customers will earn 1 BMO Elite Rewards point for every C$1 spent in purchases, and the rewards points never expire.

Cardholders are charged an annual fee of C$150, with additional cards costing C$50 per year.

“The World Elite MasterCard is designed for the affluent market segment,” a MasterCard Canada spokesperson says. “We are competing against existing players in this space and believe the World Elite MasterCard provides a better card option for the affluent market segment."

“Our goal in launching the BMO World Elite MasterCard was to diversify our reward offering to attract new customers,” says Nancy Marescotti, Director, Payments Marketing, BMO Bank of Montreal. “Based on customer research, our new offering provides great rewards choice and flexibility allowing redemptions on any airline with no blackout periods or seat restrictions including business/first class. Customers can also use points to cover all flight charges including taxes, fuel surcharges and booking fees.

"Because BMO World Elite redemptions are applied against actual retail fare costs, you get the compounded benefit of carrier discounts and low-season sales. Other cards charge a fixed number of points per destination."

Another feature of the card is that customers can redeem their points toward BMO investment products such as Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSPs), Registered Education Savings Plans (RESPs) and non-registered accounts.

As a starter, BMO is offering new cardholders a welcome bonus offer of 15,000 BMO Elite Rewards points, enough for a return flight between Toronto and New York.

The card’s insurance program offers 21 days out-of-country travel medical coverage - up to C$2 million in eligible expenses.



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