When selecting your workhorse, use the comparative tables on the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) web site. You should also consider the following criteria:

Credit Card Criteria

1. Acceptability: If you're going to run all your expenses through one card, it needs to be accepted everywhere you go. VISA or MasterCard do the trick.

2. Credit limit: This has to be practical, especially since you'll be putting larger numbers through than you would if it were one of many cards.

3. Payment cycle: Look at the fine print regarding due dates, penalties, etc.

4. Perks: Cards offer perks like cash back, travel points, and Canadian Tire Money. Are they worth it? Yes, but only if you take advantage of them. If you have family overseas and you visit them regularly, your travel points will reduce your expenses, and help with the rental cars as well.

5. Annual Fee: Some cards, such as Gold and Platinum cards, charge an annual fee. Make sure you factor this in.

6. On-line banking: If your credit card account can be accessed and paid off online, it will make it much easier to master the payment cycle.

7. Interest Rate: Low interest cards have rates as low as 10%, which will help if you need an extra month to pay off a large expenditure. But for handling longer-term debt, you can do significantly better with other types of loans. (Note: Some cards offer introductory rates as low as 0% for transferred balance. However, the rates expire after a few months, so you need to read the fine print to determine how good the card will be in the long term.)

Web site content is for informational or illustrative purposes only and is not be considered or used as a substitute for professional financial advice from an accountant, lawyer or certified financial planner. Click here to view our full legal disclaimer.