What is the Black Card in Canada?

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Ever heard of the black credit card and wondered what it means? When we talk about credit cards, there are several types, and each serves different purposes.

Most people are familiar with conventional credit cards—the ones where you have to apply and get reviewed before you’ll be deemed eligible. 

Credit cards like CIBC Dividend Visa Infinite, TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite, Scotiabank Gold American Express, etc., are some of Canada’s significant cards. And almost every household in Canada possesses one of these cards.

Yet, there is a credit card in Canada where you don’t have to apply to get it. Your card issuer invites you to get this card – this is the black card in Canada. Hearing it for the first time or not, this article will review what a black card is in Canada.

What is a Black Card?

The black card is one of the most exclusive and prestigious credit cards available in Canada. This credit card is only available to the wealthiest people in society.

It is designed for lavish spenders with impeccable needs. The black card comes with luxurious benefits that are unavailable with conventional credit cards.

Since this card is designed for the rich and influential, it comes with strict eligibility criteria. Very few people possess this card, as it is not meant for people who are still struggling financially. 

Black Card Qualification Requirement

You must be a heavy spender, totally up to thousands of CAD yearly, to possess this card. And unlike other credit cards, you can only get a black card if American Express invites you.

Yes, you have to be invited; you do not apply to get a black card. This invitation is not made public; Amex sends black card invitations to only customers deemed eligible. These are;

  • High earners who have spent and paid off about CA$350,000 and CA$500,000 across all of their American Express accounts in a year
  • You must have a considerable huge net worth
  • Your credit score must be excellent
  • Accept to pay the one-time sign-up fee of CA$5,000 and an annual fee of CA$2,500

Once you accept the invitation, Amex requires you to pay a CA$7,500 invitation cost and annual fees of CA$2,500 per card. You can have more than one card.

Note that the requirement mentioned above is not a way one ticket to get the black card; some big spenders still do not get an invitation for a black card. American Express was the first to release a black card – the American Express Centurion Black card.

Also, even after meeting all eligibility requirements, Amex will still interview you to evaluate your personality. This is to know if your personality fits their desired cardholder profile.

Required Credit Score for a Black Card

Your credit score plays a considerable impact on whether or not you will be getting that invitation. You will need to possess an excellent credit score to get a black card.

Your credit score should be between 800 and 850, as this range is considered exceptional. However, if your score is in the field of 600s and 700s, you may still be deemed eligible for a black card. This is only applicable if your overall wealth and card spending limit is remarkable.

Features of a Black Card

A black card has several premium features designed to ease living and spending for cardholders. Some of the features include:

  • Unlimited service at your fingertips
  • Add-on complimentary perks
  • Cashback/rewards points 
  • Premium, durable and unique card construction

Perks of the Black Card

Having a black card in Canada comes with several benefits. Aside from having the American Express front line and the prestige and wealth it spells, here are other perks that come with owning a black card:

  • 24/7 concierge service
  • Unlimited spending limit
  • Centurion international arrival services
  • Centurion hotel program
  • Automatic hotel elite status in Marriott Bonvoy, Hilton, Fairmont, luxury villa, relais, and chateau
  • Exclusive offers from luxury brands 
  • Amex fine hotels & resorts
  • Complimentary companion airline tickets
  • Complimentary first class flight upgrades with the international air program
  • Access to the global lounge program 
  • Complimentary membership in air Canada maple leaf lounges, all alliance lounges, priority pass lounges, etc 
  • Premium benefits on luxury cruise lines and tours
  • Shopping benefits
  • Automatic member of Avis presidents club, hertz #1 club 
  • A 50% membership rewards bonus applicable when you redeem points for any flight booked via Amex travel,
  • CA$85 credit for global or TSA precheck application
  • Complimentary in-flight wi-fi
  • CA$200 airline fee credit
  • Elite rent-a-car benefits

Prominent Black Cards in Canada

  • American Express Centurion Black Card
  • BMO World Elite Mastercard
  • Mastercard Black Card

Conclusion

Although a black card comes with several luxurious perks, not everyone can own it. However, If you receive an invite to own a black card, be sure to do research and consider alternatives to evaluate if you are making the right decision for your lifestyle, needs and preferences.

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Avid researcher, freelance writer, and personal finance enthusiast passionate about financial education and literacy.

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Kareena Maya

Personal Finance and Travel Rewards Expert Contributor

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Kareena Maya is a freelance writer focused on the personal finance and travel spaces. He frequently writes about credit cards, banking, student loans, insurance, travel rewards and more. His work has been featured in publications such as Forbes Advisor, Bankrate, Credit Karma, Finance Buzz, The Ascent and Student Loan Planner.

Kareena Maya is a freelance writer focused on the personal finance and travel spaces. He frequently writes about credit cards, banking, student loans, insurance, travel rewards and more. His work has been featured in publications such as Forbes Advisor, Bankrate, Credit Karma, Finance Buzz, The Ascent and Student Loan Planner.