Best Credit Card (2016-2017)

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Bylo Selhi
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by Bylo Selhi » 17 May 2016 12:28

AltaRed wrote:I've also found some vendors, like Rogers, Esso Speedpass, National car rental, etc. send a friendly notice to update your CC information if the one on file has expired and they assume you have gotten a renewal.
That's the problem. They don't all do it so you can't rely on it. That's another reason to keep a list yourself. You could also go back a few months' worth of statements but even then you risk losing those who bill annually. The price of forgetting to update the expiry date can be considerable, depending on the vendor.

This raises an interesting issue. If you've authorized auto-charge on a recurring basis in the first place then why would the chargers or the CC company care that a card has renewed providing the card number hasn't changed? Presumably authorization should remain in effect until one of the parties (card holder, charger, card company) explicitly terminates the arrangement.
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by AltaRed » 17 May 2016 12:56

I asked that question once some time (years ) ago. As I understood it then, the correct expiry date of the card was one of the data inputs necessary for authorization of a charge. May or may not be necessary for all vendors/issuers, BWTFDIK.
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by Bylo Selhi » 17 May 2016 13:11

AltaRed wrote:As I understood it then, the correct expiry date of the card was one of the data inputs necessary for authorization of a charge.
Yes, I assumed something like that. You'd think however that they would by now have made a distinction between one-time charges, for which they'd need the usual card holder name, card number, expiry date and CVV, and pre-authorized recurring charges for which they'd only need the card holder name, card number and a flag that preauthorization is on file. This can't be rocket science.

Likewise it would be a great convenience to customers if when they got a new card with a new number, e.g. to replace a lost or stolen card, all the pre-authorizations from the original card could be transferred to the new card. Or even if the CC company could provide the card holder with a list of pre-authorizations so they'd know who to contact.

But then again to these guys the movement of glaciers must seem like avalanches to the rest of us. After all in the US the industry is still resisting chip-and-PIN despite its deployment elsewhere for over two decades.
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by 2 yen » 17 May 2016 13:41

Amazon just detected fraud on our auxiliary card (in India). They called to say a new card is being issued and checked on a number of other charges in 3 different countries we have made purchases in recently. Impressed with their fraud detection. I did call to let them know about 2 of the countries we charged in, but not the third, so was especially pleased that they called to check up with us. It took me a while to feel comfortable with the person who called, but they never once asked for any personal or financial info, so that helped put me at ease. The online site was frozen by them until we cleared up the issue and within a minute of hanging up was able to get back online.

Fingers crossed.

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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by kcowan » 17 May 2016 15:16

Yes we had them freeze our card when we were in Mexico because a charge in USD was processed from VBT in Vermont. Unfortunately we did not know about the freeze until trying to charge at a restaurant. So we had to pay the FX until we made the call. Why they don't send an email alert I don't understand. I get other email alerts from them.
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by gsp_ » 17 May 2016 16:26

Bylo Selhi wrote:
AltaRed wrote:I've also found some vendors, like Rogers, Esso Speedpass, National car rental, etc. send a friendly notice to update your CC information if the one on file has expired and they assume you have gotten a renewal.
That's the problem. They don't all do it so you can't rely on it. That's another reason to keep a list yourself. You could also go back a few months' worth of statements but even then you risk losing those who bill annually. The price of forgetting to update the expiry date can be considerable, depending on the vendor.
FWIW I automate everything and I've never bothered to do this. Every vendor just contacts me when the card no longer works and I give them the new expiry. Never have had a fee or an issue with any vendor over this, of course I provide the new card info promptly when requested.

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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by AltaRed » 17 May 2016 19:13

Agreed. If a vendor doesn't contact me, I assume all is well.
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by Bylo Selhi » 17 May 2016 19:22

And yet ISTR a vendor charged me a late payment fee plus interest when the CC issuer rejected a pre-authorized charge because my card had expired. I was able to get that reversed but it took phone calls. I'd rather avoid this issue rather than argue with call centres after the fact.
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by 2 yen » 20 May 2016 08:36

To follow up - Amazon correctly removed the false charges from our 'authorizations' list and now all is good. They handled this very well, in my opinion.

And a question: If one calls to let a credit card company know about upcoming online foreign purchases, say in Europe, is it actually counterproductive
because someone who obtains the card info could then use it to make a purchase in, say France, and it might not be flagged? In the case above, we did not tell Amazon we wold be buying online from England and it caught the fraud in India. Just wondering if it's actually better to stay quiet before clicking. :?:

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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by Bylo Selhi » 20 May 2016 08:45

2 yen wrote:And a question: If one calls to let a credit card company know about upcoming online foreign purchases, say in Europe, is it actually counterproductive because someone who obtains the card info could then use it to make a purchase in, say France, and it might not be flagged?
Worse what if your card is compromised in the country that you're visiting. For instance a hotel clerk "borrows" your card. That might not trigger any alarms because you're supposed to be there. But not to worry. You're covered against fraudulent use regardless.

The danger in not notifying them about an overseas trip is that they consider one of your charges to be fraudulent, they call you at home to confirm, are unable to reach anyone and so they freeze the card. Then you have to call them from overseas, prove who you are and try to get the card reinstated.

In my experience with Amazon it was only necessary to inform them the first couple of trips in order to get their computers familiar with my spending patterns. I haven't done so again and have never had any problems.
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by izzy » 20 May 2016 08:59

Bylo Selhi wrote: Worse what if your card is compromised in the country that you're visiting. For instance a hotel clerk "borrows" your card. That might not trigger any alarms because you're supposed to be there. But not to worry. You're covered against fraudulent use regardless.

The danger in not notifying them about an overseas trip is that they consider one of your charges to be fraudulent, they call you at home to confirm, are unable to reach anyone and so they freeze the card. Then you have to call them from overseas, prove who you are and try to get the card reinstated.

In my experience with Amazon it was only necessary to inform them the first couple of trips in order to get their computers familiar with my spending patterns. I haven't done so again and have never had any problems.
So,be predictable so they will honour your credit card purchases but unpredictable to make it more difficult for the scammers?
Good luck with that :cry: !!
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by Bylo Selhi » 20 May 2016 09:21

izzy wrote:So,be predictable so they will honour your credit card purchases but unpredictable to make it more difficult for the scammers?
You guys are making a mountain out of a molehill. If this was such a common issue you'd see articles about it all over the media and all over the Internet. Where are they?

No matter what happens, as long as you practice some common sense, you're covered against fraud. Worst case your card gets frozen and you can't get it unfrozen from overseas.

That's why it's a good idea to carry at least one Visa and one MC. Even if your backup card charges 3% vig on FX, at least it will work when you need it.
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by 2 yen » 20 May 2016 13:56

Well, the upshot is (not to be a broken record) that we're pleased with Amazon and, since this the 'Best Credit Card' thread, hopefully our experience will help someone choose a card.

Agreed Bylo that this is really not such a huge issue. In 31 years of owning a Visa credit card of one sort or another, I've never been held responsible for fraudulent use by others. In that time period, it has probably happened about 5 or 6 times.

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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by kcowan » 20 May 2016 16:18

Bylo Selhi wrote:Worst case your card gets frozen and you can't get it unfrozen from overseas.

That's why it's a good idea to carry at least one Visa and one MC. Even if your backup card charges 3% vig on FX, at least it will work when you need it.
I have never had a problem getting it unfrozen, but beware PIN changes for Chase. I like the idea of changing my PIN when paying from sidewalk cafes because they often say they have to go find wiifi signal and poof your card has left your view.
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by AltaRed » 20 May 2016 18:17

kcowan wrote:I have never had a problem getting it unfrozen, but beware PIN changes for Chase. I like the idea of changing my PIN when paying from sidewalk cafes because they often say they have to go find wiifi signal and poof your card has left your view.
What do you mean by the underlined part? Assuming you are talking about the Chase Amazon card, do they force a PIN of their choosing on to you?
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by Okanagan » 20 May 2016 21:12

Bylo Selhi wrote:
kcowan wrote:Everything else goes on a credit card.
My approach is to put everything on CC that doesn't charge a fee to do so. For us that's things like Internet and phone but not gas, water and hydro utilities. This maximizes opportunities to collect CC rewards. We've done this using auto-charge for many years also without incident. (If only it was possible to put income and property taxes on CC without incurring fees that more than offset the CC rewards.)
Bylo - I know you are a contributor on Red Flag Deals....thought you may have noticed the posts about Canadian Tire MC that allows you to pay city/municipal property taxes in numerous locations across Canada via your CTMC if you go to a certain login ....this has been available for a number of years..I have paid my property taxes for the city I live in ...in BC for the past 4-5 years. Maybe take a look if you have a Canadian Tire CC. They do not go out of their way to advertise this...no fee ...just CT $$ added to your account....even if u just have the card for this annual purpose.... Do a search on RFD and you will find the thread. The CTMC is a no fee card.

https://www.ctfspayments.com/CTFS_Consu ... BillPay.do

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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by adrian2 » 20 May 2016 21:35

Okanagan wrote:Canadian Tire MC that allows you to pay city/municipal property taxes in numerous locations across Canada via your CTMC if you go to a certain login ....this has been available for a number of years..I have paid my property taxes for the city I live in ...in BC for the past 4-5 years.
For my municipality, property tax payment is not available through CTMC; although water & sewer, as well as Electricity bills can be paid.

I did a quick check on ctfspayments and for Bylo's location it seems to be the same (hydro yes, property tax no).
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by Bylo Selhi » 21 May 2016 07:23

Thanks for the info. In any case I don't think I'd get another CC just for that. It's hard enough to keep up with the wrinkles in the cards I have now.
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by brucecohen » 21 May 2016 08:54

I wasn't aware that I could pay my hydro bill through my CC. I'm with Hydro One and just checked their website. Yes, I can pay through the CC BUT:

"Paymentus is Hydro One's payment processing partner. They are a third-party payment processor that accepts credit card payments.

Important information:

A service fee of 1.75% will be charged by Paymentus for customers paying by credit card. The service fee is associated with the credit card payment service and is not set or retained by Hydro One."


The Paymentus website indicates they work for a number of utilities so those paying by CC might want to make sure they're not getting hit with a Paymentus fee.

My township doesn't accept CCs for property tax payments -- just cheques, pre-authorized debit and cash.

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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by kcowan » 21 May 2016 10:16

AltaRed wrote:
kcowan wrote:I have never had a problem getting it unfrozen, but beware PIN changes for Chase. I like the idea of changing my PIN when paying from sidewalk cafes because they often say they have to go find wifi signal and poof your card has left your view.
What do you mean by the underlined part? Assuming you are talking about the Chase Amazon card, do they force a PIN of their choosing on to you?
No you cannot change your PIN outside the country. Their online systems makes the PIN change really easily but then you can no longer use the card. It requires you to use a Canadian PIN capable retailer to initiate the new PIN. Until then the card is frozen. This happened in Milan on the first day of our 30 day visit to Italy. Lucky for us, the partner card remained usable.
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by AltaRed » 21 May 2016 10:23

brucecohen wrote:A service fee of 1.75% will be charged by Paymentus for customers paying by credit card. The service fee is associated with the credit card payment service and is not set or retained by Hydro One."

The Paymentus website indicates they work for a number of utilities so those paying by CC might want to make sure they're not getting hit with a Paymentus fee.

My township doesn't accept CCs for property tax payments -- just cheques, pre-authorized debit and cash.
My experience has been that only telecoms will accept CC payment, especially with no surcharge. As Bruce indicated, there are water/hydro/gas utilities that MIIGHT acccept CC payment but my experience is they push the merchant fee back on to the customer. Pre-authorized debit works just fine for me in those instances CCs are not accepted. I woudn't get a CTMC just to pay property taxes even if I could. I already carry enough cards and I rarely step inside a CT store anyway.
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by OnlyMyOpinion » 21 May 2016 10:38

AltaRed wrote:My experience has been that only telecoms will accept CC payment, especially with no surcharge. As Bruce indicated, there are water/hydro/gas utilities that MIIGHT acccept CC payment but my experience is they push the merchant fee back on to the customer.
On the subject of accepting a CC for payment, we always pay our annual home/vehicle insurance premiums with our CC by making a call to the company. They (TD MM) are one of the few payees we cannot be set up for on-line banking. CC is a TD Gold Visa (1% back on everything).

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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by AltaRed » 21 May 2016 10:50

Yes, as do I use CC for home and auto insurance (ICBC plus BCAA) and travel insurance, professional fees, etc. My prior post was focused on utilities/government agencies. I have to use pre-authorized debit on hydro, gas, and municipal utilities and provincial health premiums. Just the way it is. Annual property taxes are debit as well.
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by Bylo Selhi » 21 May 2016 16:24

OnlyMyOpinion wrote:On the subject of accepting a CC for payment, we always pay our annual home/vehicle insurance premiums with our CC by making a call to the company. They (TD MM) are one of the few payees we cannot be set up for on-line banking. CC is a TD Gold Visa (1% back on everything).
PC Insurance premiums can be paid by CC. If you use a PC Mastercard you earn double points which is equivalent of 2%. Of course a cheaper insurer who doesn't take CCs is even better if you can find one.
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Re: Best Credit Card 2016

Post by iluvnascar » 23 May 2016 12:01

I've been using my new MBNA World Elite Rewards card.....and checking out the fine print. it's even better than i thought. Not only do I get a nice 2.0% cashback on everything I purchase or pay, there are a large number of associated retailers and services that offer BONUS rebated if you use the MBNA card to purchase from them (usually on their website).

I already got my $100 bonus when I made my first charge; and there is no credit card fee for the 1st year. This is a good card!


Meanwhile, the folks at CIBC are scrambling around trying to cover their tracks. I came across an individual at their call centre who told me how to access all of my earned "Drivers' Edge Rewards" in two easy steps.....without waiting for another car lease/purchase years from now! Others at CIBC have denied this method but I was told and it was on a recorded call (aren't they all these days)? I have no doubt they are enlisting the services of Kathleen Wynne's "Hard Drive Wiping Service" to cover their tracks.
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