Travel has really spiked in 2023, compared to the past 3 years. As a result, there has been lots of complaints about overcrowding in airport lounges. Part of the reason is the free lounge access that people can receive just for being a credit card holder with certain companies. Below is a list of all the Canadian credit cards that offer free lounge access. This list does not include cards that provide a lounge membership that require a fee for each entry.
This post was due for an update. With travel pretty much back in full swing, airport lounges are filling up again, overcrowding if anything. Part of the reason is because there are quite a few credit cards out there that offer free lounge access. Even just 10 years ago, there were only a handful of Canadian credit cards that offered free lounge access. Since then, the list seems to grow longer and longer.
For the most part, 2022 was a relatively quiet year in terms of changes to the credit card industry (in terms of permanent offers). There was a significant amount of all-time high sign up bonuses, which do not factor into our ranking system. Our rankings are based on the intention of retaining credit cards for the long term, not based on churning.
It has been over a year since our last update of this post, there are some changes to this post. Furthermore, with travel opening up more and more, lounges are filling up again. So this post was due for an update as there were several changes since then, namely the addition of DragonPass, as well as several increases to annual fees.
It has been just over a year since our last update (December 1, 2020) of the rankings list. The timing works well to update again this month, since we are coming to the end of the year. Now we get a snapshot of 2021, as we head into 2022.
It has been over 2 years since our last update of this post. Quite a few changes were made since then, such as the re-branding of all the Aeroplan c-branded cards with American Express, CIBC and TD. Furthermore, there are some additional options from BMO and RBC. So this post is due for an update!
It has been 8 months since our last update. Can you believe it, 8 months ago we were already dealing with lockdowns.
Suffice to say, there has been some major changes to the industry since then, namely, Capital One slowly shutting things down, along with Aeroplan’s launch of new co-branded cards. Even so, you will notice most of the ranking changes from the middle to the end of the list.
It has been almost a year since we last updated this post, so no question this was due for an update. The reason why I waited so long is because there are very few changes to the rankings since then. However, there was a sufficient amount of changes to the industry to warrant an update. Most of the ranking movement occurred in the bottom third of the list. Furthermore, another common theme on this list is that the gap widen between some of the positions.
Every time I update the rankings, I have an overall theme throughout the post. For today’s post, the focus was on internal changes made by each financial institution which justify their position in the rankings.
I have been debating how often I should update this post. I decided on 6 months, and it has been the latest trend anyway. There has been several changes (though mostly in the bottom half of the rankings) to the industry in that period of time to warrant an update anyway. Most significantly, it was time to include Brim Financial and Cuets.Every time I write up an update, I generally try to have a theme throughout the post. This time around, I am going to emphasis more on the gap between the rankings.Below are my personal rankings of each company, along with a commentary and a list of some of my top credit card picks for each financial institution.
Due to the popularity of this post, I think it was due for an update. Along with several changes to the industry since the last time. The most significant addition is the CIBC Aventura cards. The most significant change is that BMO left Priority Pass in favour of MasterCard Airport Experiences.
Just to avoid confusion, this post refers to only cards that give at least 1 free lounge pass. It does not refer to cards that give you Priority Pass membership, but a fee to access the lounge.