WestJet Rewards Credit Card Portfolio

WestJet airplane

If you have decided that you want to focus on collecting WestJet Rewards, then the next step is to determine what portfolio of cards would maximize your WestJet travel opportunities. Understanding that one size does not fit all BoomerTraveller has developed a multi-step WestJet portfolio strategy to help simplify your choices and reduce a case of dreaded card stress which can lead to bad choices, irritation, halitosis and wasted moolah.

How to Build your WestJet Reward Card Portfolio Step by Step

Step 1. Sign up for a WestJet Rewards Account

Sign up for a free WestJet Account. Do accept to receive their emails which will keep you informed about seat sales, vacation deals, exclusive WestJet Rewards offers, partner deals, news from WestJet’s world and more.

Step 2. Choose your WestJet Reward Card

There are only two cards in Canada where you directly get WestJet Dollars when you use the card. Choose one according to your income; the World Elite card is well worth the extra fee if you can afford it.

WestJet RBC World Elite Mastercard
Annual Fee: $119
Welcome Bonus: 250 WestJet Dollars; annual round-trip companion voucher (Canada and the Continental U.S. for $99; Hawaii, Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean for $299; Europe for $399)
Earn: 1.5 points per $1 on everyday purchases; 2 points per $1 on WestJet purchases
Minimum Income: $80 K personal or $150 K family
See detailed review here

TIP: Because of the high WestJet earn rate this should be your core card.

WestJet RBC Mastercard
Annual Fee: $39
Welcome Bonus: 50 WestJet Dollars
Earn: 1 point per $1 on everyday purchases; 1.5 per $1 on WestJet purchases
Minimum Income: $15 K personal

Step 3. Choose your RBC Rewards card 

If you don’t mind dealing with more than one card, consider getting a second card from RBC. RBC Rewards points can be converted to WestJet dollars at a rate of 100 RBC Rewards points to 1 WestJet dollar. Choose one of these RBC cards as your second core card. Whether the Infinite Privilege card is worth the fee will depend on you and what other cards you may have.

Tip: several times per year RBC Rewards can be transferred to WestJet Dollars with a 15-30% bonus. Convert RBC Rewards to WestJet Dollars at these times to maximize your return.

RBC Avion Visa Infinite Privilege
Annual Fee: $399
Welcome Bonus: 25,000 RBC Rewards
Earn: 1.25 points per $1
Minimum Spend: N/A
Minimum Income: $200 K personal or family

RBC Visa Infinite Avion
Annual Fee: $120
Welcome Bonus: 15,000 RBC Rewards
Earn: 1 point per $1; 1.25 points per $1 on eligible travel
Minimum Spend: N/A
Minimum Income: $60 K personal or $100 K family

RBC Visa Platinum Avion
Annual Fee: $120
Welcome Bonus: 15,000 RBC Rewards
Earn: 1 per $1; extra rewards when you shop at select RBC partners
Minimum Spend: $N/A
Minimum Income: $0K personal $0K family

Step 4. Select Additional WestJet and RBC Rewards Card(s)

If you are willing to get more cards for the sign-up bonus (and maybe churn them), then get as many additional cards noted above in steps 2 and 3  that are not in your core portfolio to help you reach your reward point needs. Their purpose is to provide you with additional WestJet dollars (either directly or through conversion) through the welcome bonus. Choose as many cards as you are comfortable with, complete the minimum spend (if required), and cancel the card before you have to pay a second annual fee (you can think of these as your churn cards).

Step 5: For those who are already collecting American Express Membership Rewards

You can’t use WestJet Reward dollars towards taxes and fees on WestJet flights. If you stick with using only the above cards you would pay these fees and taxes with your WestJet card and get additional reward points for a future purchase…

Alternatively, if you are collecting American Express Membership Rewards in addition to your WestJet portfolio you can redeem the Membership Rewards Points against the WestJet taxes and fees making your WestJet flight free. In addition you could use some of the great perks these cards offer (e.g., lounge access, insurances).

How to use: Say you have 500 WestJet dollars in your account and you want to buy a ticket worth $1000. Use the 500 WestJet dollars to reduce the cost of the ticket to $500. Then pay off the $500 balance with the American Express Card for which you will receive American Express Membership Rewards points. Once the WestJet charge shows up on your Amex statement you can redeem the Membership Rewards points to get a credit against the WestJet charge.

If you have enough Membership Reward Points to pay off all your taxes and fees your WestJet ticket would be virtually free (minus the cost of the cards).

While BoomerTraveller is bullish on American Express Membership Rewards (because they generally offer great sign up bonus and perks) they can have hefty sign up fees and minimum spends. Unless you are also collecting American Express Rewards as a second reward program, acquiring an American Express card just to pay taxes and fees on your WestJet rewards may not be a worthwhile strategy.

via GIPHY

Make sure to read the fine print on all the cards you choose to get; some of them have benefits that may be of significant value to you.

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