Can you spend crypto like real money? Thanks to a variety of crypto cards on the market, Canadians can turn their digital currency into shiny hard plastic. Crypto cards let you spend your cryptocurrency holdings on pretty much whatever you want and anywhere they accept Visa or Mastercard. Some crypto-friendly cards even give you crypto cash back rewards on every purchase. The more you spend, the more crypto you accumulate without risking your own bacon. Let’s take a look at the most popular crypto cards in Canada right now and the different features they have.
- Crypto cards currently available in Canada
- Crypto.com Prepaid Visa: earn crypto rewards
- Shakepay Prepaid Visa: earn crypto rewards
- Mogo Platinum Prepaid Visa: earn rewards
- Bitvo Cash Card: quick access to your fiat
- Netcoins Prepaid Visa Card: earn crypto rewards
- Wealthsimple Cash Card: cash back rewards can buy crypto
- Crypto cards coming soon
- CEX.IO Visa Debit Card
- Coinbase Visa Debit Card
- Bitpay Prepaid Mastercard
- Using a crypto card: the pros and cons
Crypto cards currently available in Canada
While there are many cryptocurrency exchange platforms available to Canadians, not all of them offer crypto cards in Canada. Below is a list of crypto prepaid Visa cards currently available in the Great White North. Some are crypto-specific cards that allow you to spend your fiat holdings on the platform, while others are simply crypto-friendly cards that allow you to earn crypto cash back rewards on your purchases. Still, there are some crypto cards that allow you to do both. Let’s take a look at each.
- Crypto.com Prepaid Visa
- Shakepay Prepaid Visa
- MOGO Platinum Prepaid Visa
- Bitvo Cash Card Prepaid Visa
- Netcoins Prepaid Visa
- Wealthsimple Cash Card Prepaid Visa
Crypto.com Prepaid Visa: earn crypto rewards
The Crypto.com Prepaid Visa Card is the most popular crypto card in Canada. Unlike an actual credit card, the Crypto.com Visa is a prepaid card you load with your own money. You don’t need a credit check to get this card and you’ll never owe a balance or pay interest for using it. Simply load your crypto card from debit/credit card, eTransfer, or from your crypto wallet.
Crypto.com has its own native token called Cronos (CRO); worth about $0.51 CAD at the time of writing. Cardholders earn CRO every time they use the card. There are different Crypto.com Visa Card products to choose from depending on what kind of rewards you want, and how quickly you want to earn them.
There is an entry-level card that is easy to get but has the least amount of benefits and crypto rewards. If you want a crypto card with more features and a higher earn rate you need to buy and stake CRO for 180 days. The cards are tiered according to how many rewards and features they offer. Each one requires a different minimum amount of CRO you must buy and stake in order to qualify.
The more rewards and perks you want from your Crypto.com Visa, the more CRO you need. The basic entry-level card is the easiest to get and doesn’t require any staking, but only offers 1% CRO rewards on purchases, no other features. The other cards require staking amounts that range from $500 to $500,000 CAD worth of CRO. For the staking cards, CRO cash back rewards range from 2% to 8%. Each level of card offers more enhanced reward features which include discounted or free subscription services like Netflix and Spotify, airport lounge passes, travel discounts, exclusive merchandise, and more. The highest tier card even offers a private jet membership.
There is no cost to sign up to Crypto.com and there are no monthly or annual card fees. The only “fee” to get a Crypto.com Visa is the staking requirement for the particular card you want, other than the entry-level Visa. There are daily automatic teller machine (ATM) withdrawal limits that differ with each card level. A full breakdown of transaction fees can be found within the Crypto.com mobile app.
Shakepay Prepaid Visa: earn crypto rewards
The Shakepay Visa is another wildly popular crypto card on the market. Shakepay is a Canadian cryptocurrency company based out of Montreal, Quebec. They offer zero-commission trades for Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH). They also offer Canadians an alternative to Venmo with instant peer-to-peer cash and crypto transfers. The Shakepay Visa is a prepaid card that allows you to spend the Canadian dollars in your Shakepay account. It doesn’t require a credit check or minimum income to qualify.
Shakepay Visa cardholders earn 1% cash back in Bitcoin on all their purchases, and new users earn an additional 1% on their first $5,000. Cardholders also get the chance to have their purchases paid back in Bitcoin. You can also earn free Bitcoin every day when you open the mobile app and shake your phone.
The Shakepay Visa card is available to all Shakepay users in all provinces and territories. To get the card, download the Shakepay app and open an account. You can fund your account for free by eTransfer, bank wire, or by transferring in BTC or ETH from a private wallet. You can also receive cash and crypto from other Shakepay users free of charge.
As long as there is Canadian money in your Shakepay account, you can use the card on all your everyday purchases everywhere Visa is accepted. You decide how much you spend by how much you deposit into your account. You can also fund your account by selling your BTC and ETH back into Canadian dollars. Whether you earn BTC on your card purchases or buy it directly, you can either store it on the platform, transfer it to a private wallet or cash it out to Canadian funds. Cash and crypto withdrawals are always free.
There are no monthly or annual fees to use the card. The Shakepay Visa is compatible with both Apple Pay and Google Pay, and can be used online or in-store. If your card is ever lost or stolen, you can suspend it from the app. Most of the crypto on the Shakepay platform is stored offline in a cold wallet, and covered by a digital asset insurance policy.
Mogo Platinum Prepaid Visa: earn rewards
The MOGO Platinum Prepaid Visa card is the first climate-positive form of payment in Canada that also earns Bitcoin rewards. MOGO is a financial services company based in Vancouver, British Columbia. They offer a variety of services such as personal loans, mortgages, credit score building, Bitcoin trading, and more. Every time you use the MOGO Platinum Prepaid Visa to make a purchase you’ll earn 50 Green Satoshis. A satoshi is the smallest unit of Bitcoin.
What makes them green? MOGO will plant enough trees to offset the carbon footprint created by all the Bitcoin held on their platform. In addition to that, every time you use the card for a purchase, they’ll plant a tree for that too.
The MOGO Platinum Prepaid Visa is another prepaid card that does not require a credit check or a certain amount of income to qualify. It’s easy to get, accepted everywhere Visa is accepted, and you’ll start earning free Bitcoin right away. To get the MOGO Platinum Prepaid Visa, open an account and request the card from within the app. This crypto card is not currently available to Quebec residents.
There are no fees to join MOGO nor are there any monthly card fees to worry about. Loading the card is quick and easy with either Interac eTransfer or with a Debit/Visa card attached to your bank account. There are no fees to load your card, or use it for purchases. You will only pay fees when you withdraw from the card through an Automated Teller Machine (ATM), make a foreign transaction, or if you haven’t used the card for at least a year.
When you earn Green Satoshis, they are automatically credited to your MOGO Crypto account. Unfortunately, here’s where things get a little tricky. You cannot cash out your Bitcoin to Canadian dollars to then fund your MOGO Platinum Prepaid Visa. Instead, Canadian funds in your MOGO Crypto account can only be withdrawn to a bank account. You would then have to fund your MOGO Platinum Prepaid Visa from your bank account. That’s a lot of transferring back and forth; a huge hassle just to spend your Bitcoin rewards. Having said that, MOGO is working on a digital wallet experience to make moving money around within your MOGO account seamless, so don’t despair. Stay tuned.
In the meantime, MOGO Platinum Prepaid Visa does allow you to earn Bitcoin quickly and easily on all your everyday purchases. Your Bitcoin rewards are deposited to your MOGO Crypto account where you can convert them to Canadian dollars, or leave them on the platform. MOGO stores 95% of the Bitcoin held on the platform offline in cold storage. You don’t have full control over your crypto because you cannot transfer them off the platform to a private wallet. But at least you don’t have to worry about moving it around properly, choosing the right digital wallet, or the other responsibilities that come with self-custody.
Bitvo Cash Card: quick access to your fiat
Bitvo is a Canadian cryptocurrency exchange platform based in Calgary and led by two women with extensive experience in banking and the payment processing industry. Naturally, the Bitvo crypto exchange platform offers users a Bitvo Cash Card linked to their trade account. This crypto card is one of the easiest ways to spend your crypto on pretty much anything, no matter where you shop. It’s a prepaid Visa, so there is no credit check or minimum income required to qualify. The Bitvo Cash Card is accepted everywhere Visa and Plus are accepted.
As long as there are Canadian funds in your Bitvo account, you can access them with the Bitvo Cash Card. You can add funds to your Bitvo account by Interac eTransfer, wire transfer, or with cash or debit at any Canada Post location. You can also transfer in crypto from a private wallet. To “spend” your crypto simply sell your coins back into Canadian dollars. The trade is instant, and the funds are immediately accessible on the card.
Download the Bitvo mobile app to make instant trades from anywhere, anytime. That means you can use the app while standing in line for coffee. At the tap of a button you can sell your Dogecoin back into Canadian dollars, then use those funds to pay for your coffee with the Bitvo Cash Card before it’s even your turn in line.
To get the Bitvo Cash Card, open an account and request the card from the top of your dashboard. The card costs $10 plus tax and will be shipped to you. You can get the card for free if you deposit $25,000 or more into your Bitvo account within a 12 month period. There are no card activation, monthly, or annual fees, but using the card for regular purchases can get pricy. All Bitvo Cash Card transactions are subject to a 1% withdrawal fee in addition to $1 each per card purchase either in-store or online and ATM cash withdrawals. Foreign transactions cost 1% plus a 3% foreign currency exchange fee.
The Bitvo Cash Card is one of the best crypto cards out there to help you cash in your crypto to spend on anything, anytime. However, there are fees attached to every single transaction you make with the card, making this a very expensive card to use in terms of fees. Nor do you earn any cash back or crypto rewards for using it. You can only load your card up to $500 a day, and there are some pretty strict spend and withdrawal limits as well. You can access the Bitvo Cash Card agreement on their site for more information.
Netcoins Prepaid Visa Card: earn crypto rewards
Based in Vancouver, Netcoins is one of the top cryptocurrency exchange platforms in Canada, especially for beginners. Established in 2014, Netcoins provided Bitcoin ATMs around the world, as well as providing private brokerage services for large crypto investors. Now, Netcoins is a popular exchange platform that allows users to fund their trade account with either CAD or USD funds and offers them a rewards-earning crypto card as well.
Netcoins and KOHO, a popular non-bank financial services provider in Canada, have teamed up to provide the Netcoins Visa Prepaid Card. It’s not a credit card, so there is no credit check or minimum income required to get it. It’s linked to your Netcoins account, allowing you to spend your Canadian funds balance anywhere Visa is accepted, either instore or online. You’ll earn 3% cash back on all your purchases in the first three months, to a rewards total of $100. After that, the cash back rate drops to 1%. You can either keep your Bitcoin rewards in your Netcoins account or transfer them off the platform to a private wallet.
Your cash back rewards are earned in Canadian dollars first, then your accumulated rewards balance is automatically converted into Bitcoin once a month. To get this crypto card, you’ll need to open a Netcoins account then request the prepaid Visa. You can choose between a physical card, a virtual card, or both. There is no cost to get the card, and there are no annual or monthly card fees either.
Netcoins crypto cards are valid wherever they accept Visa, and the virtual card is ready to use almost instantly after signing up. This card is also compatible with Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay. You can fund your Netcoins prepaid visa by Interac eTransfer, bank wire, or when you sell your crypto holdings back into Canadian dollars. With the Netcoins mobile app, you can fund your account, make trades, and withdraw from your account anytime. Again, that means you can quickly sell your crypto then spend the balance of Canadian funds with your card.
There are almost no transaction fees to use this card for day-to-day purchases. There is a 1.5% foreign transaction fee along with an inactivity fee of $1 per month if your card hasn’t been used for 12 consecutive months. The Netcoins prepaid Visa does have a daily point-of-sale transaction limit of 15 per day, and a maximum of 5 ATM transactions per day. While every card imposes some sort of dollar amount cap on various types of transactions, the Netcoins crypto card offers some of the most generous transaction limits with a total daily spend limit of $8,000, and a total ATM withdrawal limit of $2,000. You can find all the associated fees and limits in the cardholder agreement.
Wealthsimple Cash Card: cash back rewards can buy crypto
The Wealthsimple Cash Card is more of a crypto-friendly card rather than a designated crypto card specifically. Wealthsimple is one of the best online investment brokerages in Canada and they offer a suite of other features and products. In 2020, Wealthsimple launched their hybrid spending-savings account along with the Wealthsimple Cash Card, a prepaid Visa accepted everywhere Visa is accepted. In 2021, the Wealthsimple Crypto app launched, allowing users to buy and trade cryptocurrencies.
The Wealthsimple Cash Card provides 1% cash back on all your daily purchases with the card. The best part? You can choose to use your cash back rewards to buy stock or crypto. In fact, you can set this up to happen automatically, talk about no-fuss crypto investing. Your cash back rewards balance is deposited directly into your Wealthsimple Crypto account and used to buy crypto. The Wealthsimple Cash Card is a great way to invest in crypto without using your own money.
The Wealthsimple Cash Card is a prepaid Visa, not a credit card. There is no credit check or minimum income required to get this card. Simply open a Wealthsimple Cash account, then request the card from within the mobile app. In order to have your cash back rewards automatically buy crypto for you, you’ll need to open a Wealthsimple Crypto account too. Then, from your Wealthsimple Cash mobile app, activate the “invest your rewards feature” and follow the prompts. You can fund the card by linking your bank account, a debit card, accepting cash from other Wealthsimple Cash users, as well as from your other Wealthsimple accounts.
The Wealthsimple Cash Card is available as a virtual card as well as a physical card. It’s also compatible with both Apple Pay and Google Pay. A great feature of the Wealthsimple Cash app is that you can instantly send cash to friends and family on the app, making it another great Canadian alternative to Venmo. You can also spend your crypto holdings almost instantly at the tap of a button. The Wealthsimple Crypto mobile app has integrated features that allow you to sell your crypto holdings back into Canadian dollars, then send that money to your Wealthsimple Cash account. However, your Wealthsimple Cash account has its own separate app from your Wealthsimple Crypto app. But as long as your transaction from selling crypto to CAD has settled, the transfer from your crypto account to your cash account is almost instant, allowing you to spend your crypto holdings quickly and easily.
The Wealthsimple Cash Card is basically free. There is no fee to get the card, no monthly or annual fees, and no fees for transactions. Wealthsimple doesn’t even charge exchange fees on foreign transactions. All you have to pay is the Canadian equivalent of your transaction along with any applicable fees imposed by Visa and any Automated Teller Machines (ATM) you use to access the funds on your card. You can spend a maximum of $5,000 per day, and withdraw a maximum of $1,000 per day, with a $500 cap per ATM withdrawal transaction.
Crypto cards coming soon
While the selection of crypto cards is limited in Canada right now, there are more options coming soon. Canada has proven to be a very crypto-friendly country, and other global cryptocurrency exchanges are in the process of making their crypto cards available to their Canadian customers. Below is a list of major cryptocurrency exchange platforms planning to launch their crypto cards in Canada, some already have active waitlists for Canadians.
CEX.IO Visa Debit Card
CEX.IO is a global cryptocurrency exchange platform popular among Canadians. It offers a full suite of crypto features beyond trading such as crypto staking and crypto loans. CEX.IO announced the upcoming launch of their new Debit Visa card. It will offer the ability to spend the assets in your crypto portfolio, along with a stellar 5% crypto cash back reward on all your card purchases. Right now, the waitlist for the card is only available for UK residents. However, CEX.IO plans to offer this crypto card to other countries soon. Open a CEX.IO account today to get real-time updates on the crypto Visa Debit card availability.
Coinbase Visa Debit Card
While Coinbase is an American crypto company, it’s one of the most popular cryptocurrency exchanges in Canada. Coinbase recently announced plans to launch its own crypto card, the Coinbase Visa Debit. Right now, the waitlist for the Coinbase crypto card is only open to residents of the USA. However, it stands to reason that eventually they’ll launch a crypto card for Canadians too. So check in on the Coinbase website often for updates.
Bitpay Prepaid Mastercard
Bitpay is another well-known cryptocurrency exchange in Canada. They’ve already launched the Bitpay Prepaid Mastercard for their American users, and have started a waitlist for their Canadian users. To join the waitlist, simply open an account and follow the prompts. As soon as the Bitpay crypto card launches, you’ll be notified.
Using a crypto card: the pros and cons
There are incredible benefits of using a crypto card. Namely, it allows you to access the funds in your crypto portfolio to spend on everyday purchases. For those that offer rewards, the additional feature is earning crypto cash back that lets you accumulate more cryptocurrency without having to use new money. No to mention, unlike regular cash back rewards, your crypto rewards have to potential to be worth significantly more in the future.
All the crypto cards currently available in Canada are partnered with Visa, a well-known and widely accepted payment company. These crypto Visa cards come with the same built-in safety features as a traditional Visa credit card. Also, all these crypto cards are prepaid credit cards that behave more like debit cards. Signing up for a crypto card won’t impact your credit score, you’ll never owe a balance when you make purchases, nor will you have to pay interest. You need to preload the card with funds you already have, rather than borrowing and owing a balance on a statement. These crypto cards are accepted everywhere Visa is accepted and can be used in-store, online, and at Visa-supported ATMs.
You do have the personal responsibility of securing your digital assets appropriately depending on the crypto exchange platform you use, and exercising caution when trading and moving your money around. Not every cryptocurrency exchange in Canada is regulated. Unregulated exchanges come with their own inherent risks. Also, you need to be careful when shopping with online merchants to ensure you are interacting with a legitimate website and company, but that is true no matter what kind of card you’re using.
Another downside to consider is the safety of your fiat holdings, like your Canadian dollars, on these platforms. Not every cryptocurrency exchange holds their customer’s fiat balance in a Canadian financial institution that provides deposit insurance, such as the Canadian Deposit Insurance Corporation (CDIC) which protects up to $100,000 of your fiat holdings. You’ll need to do your own due diligence when it comes to choosing the right cryptocurrency platform for your needs, goals, and risk profile.
Finally, the biggest downside to using a crypto card is the potential tax bill come income tax season. The Canada Revenue Agency considers every crypto transaction a taxable event, and will either tax it as a capital gain or business income depending on the nature of the transaction. That means there is a tax implication every time you sell your crypto holdings back into fiat in order to fund your crypto card for spending. It’s your responsibility to keep track of your crypto activity and report it to the CRA when you file your tax return.