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Walmart Credit Card Review (Canada) – How Does it Stack Up?

walmart credit card review canadaFor one reason or another, I’ve been getting a number of emails looking for my opinion on the Walmart credit card. Generally, I prefer credit card rewards to be flexible, like a cash back credit card, rather than being locked into a single vendor.

However, there are some vendors that offer good value, like Loblaws and their World Mastercard which offers a 2% return when using the card in their stores. Or Shoppers Drug Mart and their Optimum Points which can offer value when used in conjunction with 20X the points days.

Needless to say, there is a lot of competition in the credit card landscape. Lets see how the Walmart credit card stacks up.

The Benefits

So what exactly does this credit card offer?

  • No Annual Fee;
  • $25 in bonus Walmart Rewards when using your card for the first time (must go paperless too);
  • 1.25% of your purchases in Walmart towards Walmart Rewards;
  • 1% of all other purchases towards Walmart Rewards;
  • Redeem rewards instantly at a Walmart cash register in $5 increments.

Basically if you spend $100 at Walmart, you’ll get $1.25 towards a future Walmart purchase.  When making purchases elsewhere, you’ll get 1% towards a future Walmart purchase.  In essence, it’s a cash back card but the card holder is locked into spending at Walmart.  It’s not a bad system for die hard Walmart shoppers.

The Drawbacks

Ah the drawbacks, and there are a couple.  In addition to being locked into spending your credit card rewards at Walmart, one big surprise is that this credit card lacks an insurance package.  Most decent free credit cards will at least offer purchase theft assurance and extended warranty.  Actually, they do offer extended warranty – but at a cost of $3.99/month (seriously?).

Final Thoughts

To summarize, the Walmart credit card is a 1% cash back card that jumps to 1.25% cash back on in-store purchases.  The catch is that the rewards must be spent in a Walmart and no insurance coverage is offered.  While it’s great that this card has no annual fee and offers value to dedicated Walmart shoppers, there are other free credit cards that are much more competitive.

For example, some may argue that this card is better than the Smart Cash card since the 2% for gas and groceries cannot be earned for groceries at Walmart.  So Walmart card users will get 1.25% cash back on their groceries vs 1% on the Smart Cash Card.  This is a valid argument against the Smart cash card, but when you combine the fact that Smart Cash users will get 2% back on gasoline and any other grocery shopping (up to $400/month), and the decent insurance package (price protection, purchase assurance, car rental insurance, and extended warranty), the Smart Cash is still offers more value.

Another example is the Capital One Aspire Cash Platinum card.  This free capital one card will give you 1.25% cash back on all spending, in addition to a strong insurance package (price protection, purchase assurance, car rental insurance, baggage delay and extended warranty).  This is an easy pick over the Walmart card.

Overall, the Walmart card can offer value to exclusive Walmart shoppers, but there are better free credit cards out there.

 

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FrugalTrader About the author: FrugalTrader is the founder and editor of Million Dollar Journey (est. 2006). Through various financial strategies outlined on this site, he grew his net worth from $200,000 in 2006 to $1,000,000 by 2014. You can read more about him here.

{ 33 comments… add one }
  • This Life On Purpose November 4, 2013, 12:27 pm

    I’m not a big fan of Walmart, so I wouldn’t be too keen on this card. I’ve got the MBNA Smart Cash World card and so I’ll be sticking with that. Thanks for the review!

  • Tom November 4, 2013, 12:43 pm

    I still think the Capital One Aspire Travel card is the best :) 2% cash back if you bide your time and apply it wisely. And only effectively $20 a year because of the anniversary bonus..

  • FrugalTrader FrugalTrader November 4, 2013, 4:19 pm

    @Tom, do you wait until you have >$600 in travel expenses before claiming? Do you have a particular strategy?

  • saveddijon November 4, 2013, 9:20 pm

    If you do apply for the Walmart card, there are a few quirks.

    First, the clerk at the customer service desk inputs your name, address, etc. from your driver’s license. In theory you’d think that would guarantee correctness but in my case, she neglected to input my last name! The result: I had to call a 1-800 number to clear that up. Strike one.

    Once I got my card I had to call to activate. Strangely, after going through the touch-tone game, inputting everything as asked, I was asked to hold for a representative. She confirmed a few details that I had given previously, including a few that I had input using touch-tone. I’m not sure what the issue was, but my card was activated (in theory, see below). Strike two. I got a companion card for my wife; she had no problem activating and subsequently using the card, and she didn’t need to talk to anyone.

    The first time I tried to use the card at Walmart, I stick the chip in the reader and it thinks…. for a good 20 seconds. It then asks me for my PIN, which I give. Error: incorrect pin. I try again. Incorrect pin. Not wishing to risk a third fail and killing my wife’s card, I switch to my primary card, the Scotiabank Visa Momentum, and that works. Strike three.

    Off to call customer service yet again. Apparently, the first time you use the card, you need to provide a signature. I was told this, but what I was not told was how you get there: even though you enter the correct PIN, the PIN will be rejected. On the third try, the cashier is supposed to get a message asking you for a signature, and after that everything will be golden. In my case the cashier didn’t know the protocol, and so was unable to point it out. Poor training.

    This Sunday I will try yet again. I spend over $100 weekly at Walmart so the card ought to hold value for me, provided I can work off the up-front cost of wasting my time holding for a human three times. But compared to other chip cards I have had, my experience has been a bit ridiculous.

  • cb November 5, 2013, 12:19 am

    Like it way better than P.C mastercard they up there cash out at 20,000pts, wmt is 5000. And P.C is 1% everywhere threw mine away.Walmart I also get 1.35% because I work there.And 10% employee discount.
    there are competitive like the rest of them and easier to quilify for.

  • Dan November 5, 2013, 1:01 am

    @saveddijon that sounds like the typical Wal Mart customer service experience. I think I will pass on this card

  • Evan November 5, 2013, 12:28 pm

    saveddijon,

    The PIN process you mentioned is pretty standard – I have had to go through it with other cards (specifically a commercial card from Wells Fargo). The card works online and if swiped, but the PIN won’t be stored until you use it on a terminal that requires PIN entry.

  • Pat November 5, 2013, 9:18 pm

    At what point are you going to tell all your faithful readers how valuable credit card reviewing is to your milliondollarjourney? I’m sure the rewards are plenty but I think it would be a good thing for full disclosure that amongst the dozen credit card reviews to have at least one post titled “how much money I make from reviewing credit cards”. I’ve enjoyed many of your posts and have learned a lot but I find more and more now I’m coming back to see yet another review for credit card products?

    • FrugalTrader FrugalTrader November 5, 2013, 10:03 pm

      @Pat, it’s no secret that MDJ makes revenue from advertising. And it’s no secret that there is affiliate advertising on here as well that includes some discount brokers and some credit cards. However, having said that, I feel that my reviews are balanced and not sales based. I would only put an affiliate link to a card that I either use myself, or would use. There are no affiliate links in this post.

  • Dan November 5, 2013, 11:04 pm

    @Pat not only are there no affiliate links, the final verdict on the card is that it isn’t that great – and rightfully so. It’s not like it’s a glowing review of the card with a plug for everyone to sign up. As the last sentence says, there are better cards out there (ie. MBNA smart cash back). The cash back % isnt that great and its silly to pay for the extended warranty. This article is useful because it gives cold hard numbers for the reader to make their own decision

  • Kevin November 6, 2013, 8:33 pm

    FWIW, the Walmart Supercentres count as grocery stores on my MBNA Smartcash, so it’s a no brainer for me.

  • Paul T November 11, 2013, 1:20 pm

    @kevin, it doesn’t show up that way on my Scotiabank Visa Momentum card. Wal-Mart Supercenter transacations are 1% (cash back) rather than 4% :-(

  • David December 11, 2013, 2:33 am

    This isn’t a good card at all. I applied and was approved for a limit of $3000 of which $1500 was the cash advance limit. As I needed to take some cash out of this card, on my second advance the limit was automatically reduced to $1,900!! Where I had $1,200 still available I suddenly had only $32!
    Walmart doesn’t like customers who use the cash advance feature and are very punitive in their unilateral reductions of credit limits for no good reason. If you don’t like giving cash advances or allowing them at all, then don’t. No other bank does this to their customers should they take advantage of it.

  • Paul Gorman April 25, 2014, 12:21 pm

    SMACKS OF DECEPTION
    The Walmart MasterCard Extended Warranty Plan for a $3.99 monthly fee applied to your account, claims to offer a double the manufacturer’s warranty for up to 2 additional years beyond the Manufacturer’s Warranty. Once you sign up and receive the warranty certificate the plan actually provides coverage for a time equal to (or less than) the Manufacturer’s warranty and not double the time as stated.

    Isn’t this false advertising!

  • Jeff June 3, 2014, 11:43 pm

    Walmart MasterCard, administered by TD in Orangeville.

    Not surprised these two are still in bed together.

  • Wayne October 29, 2014, 2:35 pm

    @ David
    You mention after the second advance, they cut your limit. Most people don’t take cash from their credit card to begin with, let alone twice! If this was done shortly after you got the card, I can see why they would reduce your limit. While a cash advance is an option on the card, using it increases risk to the lender, because it shows them you’re strapped for cash if you need to take some from your credit card. And to do it twice. You’re lucky they didn’t cancel the card on you, which they have the right to do whenever they want. They can also lower your limit whenever they want without notifying you. It’s their money you’re using until it’s paid back. Credit is a privilege, not an entitlement.

  • mj November 3, 2014, 9:15 am

    I just applied for this card. The vlerk informed me I could pay with cash anf still swipe the card for points. Sounds like I got scammrd

  • Wayne November 3, 2014, 11:48 am

    @mj

    I’m not sure I believe that.
    Even if the clerk did tell you that, you should have known better. No credit card in Canada works like that. To get the benefit/points etc… the card always has to be used for the purchase.
    There was no scam here.

  • Mohammad January 25, 2015, 4:04 pm

    I used to use walmart mastercard for a while. After a glitch to send statement notification and not very good customer service to solve my dispute I decided to close my account and keep using my capital one ceredit card.
    Do not ruin your credit score by using walmart master card. Their system glich
    Cost you to be a bad credit.

  • Jen June 30, 2015, 11:50 pm

    I was invited to apply for the card when shopping at Walmart using my secured Visa credit card. The clerk said that my Visa card and Drivers Licence ensured it would be a guaranteed approval. As I still have a completed consumer proposal listed on my credit bureau report I declined the invitation as my credit score is still really low. Would I be risking a rejection and hard hit on my credit bureau if I applied for this card or is it truly a guaranteed approval after presenting ID and a major credit card?

    • Wayne July 23, 2015, 10:37 am

      It’s a guaranteed approval if you’re credit is healthy. Your CP may or may not result in a rejection. Every bank sets its own acceptance and tolerance guidelines. My guess is you did the right thing, as I would think you would have most certainly been declined.
      Walmart cashiers will say almost anything to get you to apply. But just remember, these minimum wage earners are forced to ask you to apply or they get in hot water with upper management. It’s sad really. I decline their offer every time, and just say I’m sorry, but your card stinks and I have many way better cards in my wallet that doesn’t have the audacity to charge a monthly fee for extended warranty benefit.
      Every other Mastercard in my wallet has that feature for FREE!
      My favourite pass time was when I would go to Walmart and pull out my Target Mastercard for payment. They would ask me to apply every time without fail as soon as they seen their competitors card haha

  • Sam July 23, 2015, 1:19 am

    I got my Walmart master card in first week of June and cancelled it today July 22 2015. Why. It charged me $ 28.25 for the uniprotection Toronto
    On which I never did on June 25th. I called customer service for this. I was transferred to credit card security. Instead of resolving the issue I was advised to go to police , lodge complain of fraud and send the police report to Walmart financials then they may do something. To go through so much I decided to close my account and nothing to do with the wallmart financials again. It totally sucks. After closing the account I asked for confirmation
    # . Reply was we don’t give any confirmation # to customers. I asked for a letter of confirmation to close my account. Reply was it will take 7-10 ?business days.hopefully I get it.
    It
    Walmart really sucks. Never had such bad experience with any other credit card. For this kind of service walmart should be charged for. Fraud.

    • FrugalTrader FrugalTrader July 23, 2015, 8:10 am

      @Sam, as the Walmart credit card is part of the MasterCard family, it is entitled to zero liability (http://www.mastercard.ca/zero-liability.html). You should contact another rep and have the charge reversed.

      • sam August 13, 2015, 5:58 pm

        I did ask for supervisor to resolve my issues. But he said nobody is available. he promised that i will get a call very soon regarding this which didn’t happen till today. I have Master card from Canadian Tire since 2004 and i had a couple of over charging or card being compromised but they are very helpful and always resolved my issues without any arguments and hassles. I love canadian tire financials.

        Walmart customer service and care sucks.

  • J Boileau September 7, 2015, 8:28 am

    Incompetent company to deal with. Ordered something online 2 months ago and never received. 3 calls later and a form Wal-Mart was supposed to send which I never got to get my money back Never arrived. Still trying to get my money back. Its like jumping through hoops. I have a Capital One card and have never ever had any problems like this. What can one expect from a company like Wal-Mart though.

  • Jessica Zong October 7, 2015, 1:28 pm

    This walmart rewards mastercard sucks!! After 7 calls, more than a month, no one can resolve my issues, one says this, one says that, and the terrible thing is they keep charging me interest without stopping! It looks like this will never end. I guess this is a new way for them to earn profits??

  • Renuka October 16, 2015, 10:52 pm

    The Walmart mastercard customer service team will laugh at you and make fun of your name. I don’t recommend it.

  • afzal November 12, 2015, 1:56 pm

    Worst worst worst worst
    our cars was blocked and the told us to send in documents we did for 3 months. each time we call and get it unblocked they would ask security questions and they would say it’s not correct and wold block us again. this has been happening for 4 months now. I just want to get it unblocked and cancel it.

  • Clare December 5, 2015, 4:14 pm

    Walmart Mastercard neglects to tell you that if you don’t use your Walmart Card at Walmart and also somewhere else within 30 days, you will not get the $15 bonus points. I was using my card at Walmart but not anywhere else. When I call them after 30 days they informed me I had not used it elsewhere, so I was not entitled to the $15 bonus points. I asked for an extension since this was not noted on the paperwork that came with the card. The representative refused to give an extension. I’ll be closing this card.

  • Shajia January 12, 2016, 8:01 pm

    Very bad customer service. I wanted to cancel my account, they are asking so many questions that I couldn’t reply, finally they referred me to credit bureau. I didn’t know which bank issued the card. They are asking me to know it from credit bureau.

  • ja May 5, 2016, 10:43 pm

    WORST CUSTOMER SERVICE, Will never be getting a card again with them in the future.

  • Marisa July 14, 2016, 12:43 pm

    FRAUD DEPARTMENT NIGHTMARE:
    someone across the country used my Walmart Mastercard, when i reported the charge as fraudulent the fraud department sent me a new card and reversed the charge. 4 months later I closed my account because I was tired of wasting money on poor quality items at Walmart and on the same day I closed my account, they reversed the fraudulent charge. After 6 calls and countless representatives they told me I didn’t sign their affidavit and the case was closed without anyone sending me notice that the case was closing and now I am liable for the entire fraudulent charge. Is it a coincidence this happened the same day I closed my account? No. Is it obvious that it was a fraudulent charge, “We cannot disclose that”, is it possible you didn’t receive my affidavit and you should have contacted me “we cannot disclose that”. ….. WALMART – promoting a healthier lifestyle through their heart attack and stroke inducing customer service.

  • Roy Estabrooks October 31, 2016, 5:16 pm

    Dont get this card
    First of all I have never had a late payment and have always paid more than the minimum payment when it has had a balance on it.
    But twice they have slashed my limit
    First time was before I even got the first bill initially I was given a 3000 limit and I had planned to use the card to pay for my expenses during a month because I needed my cash to make a large purchase. I had used approx 1500 and went to buy gas one day and card was declined fortunately I had cash on me as they had cut the limit without telling me (got letter in mail 5 days later) over couple of years the limit was raised up to 4400 I made a large payment 3000 to basically pay it off so I could use the card to pay for my vacation as I required a credit card to pay online after making the payment I used the card to pay for the vacation about a week later I called to get balance so I would know exact cost as vacation was in US dollars I had already recieved my new statement of which payment due was $58 when I called I found out they had slashed my limit from 4400 to 3100 which left me 400 over my limit and that they now wanted 458 for the payment that was due in a few days. The letter arrived day after my statement saying they cut it because of the activity on my account. I recommend getting a visa or different mastercard as even when you never miss a payment and pay over the minimum payment this company can not be trusted you can never be sure what your limit is or if it will change without your knowing

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