Clash of the Credit Cards!
HSBC World Elite® Mastercard® vs.
TD First Class Travel® Visa Infinite* Card

Last Updated on April 5, 2022
First posted on April 5, 2022

Cobalt vs. eclipse

Welcome to another Rewards Canada Clash! This clash comes to us at the request of one of our Facebook followers! 'Nam' asked if we could have a Clash between the HSBC World Elite® Mastercard® and the TD First Class Travel® Visa Infinite* Card so here it is! If you would like to see any cards go head to head against each please do not hesitate to reach out to us in the comments, on social media or via email.

Click here to see all the other Rewards Canada clashes

In this match up we look at over half a dozen criteria to compare the cards against one another along with a head to head detailed table comparison.

Annual Fees / Sign Up Bonus

In this first round there is a definite difference between the cards, the TD card retains used to be the standard fee for a premium card and that is $120 per year. The HSBC comes in higher at $149 per year. Supplementary or additional cards are equal between the two competitors at $50 per card. At the time of first posting this Clash (April 2022) both the HSBC World Elite card and the TD First Class Visa card come with a first year annual fee waiver/rebate allowing people to try out either one at no cost as part of their limited time welcome offers. In terms of minimum income requirements the TD card requires $60,000 personal or $100,000 household while the HSBC is higher at $80,000 personal or $150,000 household annual income

For the standard sign up bonus there are some slight differences between the cards. The standard bonus on the HSBC World Elite Mastercard is 20,000 points which are worth $100 towards travel. The standard bonus on the TD First Class Visa Infinite Card is 40,000 points and those points are worth $160.00 towards travel. However, over the past few years it has been very rare for either of these two cards to be offering only a standard bonus. For the most part they have limited time increased welcome offers. Tip: If you see the HSBC card with a 20,000 point bonus you are most likely seeing it during a two week break as HSBC typically likes to have a little bit of a break between limited time offers and history has shown that the break is usually around two weeks long.

That brings us the current limited time welcome bonus offers for these cards! As of April 2022 the HSBC card as an increased welcome bonus of up to 80,000 points* plus an annual fee rebate in the fist year. They are offering 20,000 points when you are approved for the card and an additional 40,000 points when you spend $6,000 in the first 180 days plus an annual fee waiver in the first year as noted above. Finally an additional 20,000 points is awarded on your first card anniversary to bring it to 80,000 points. This offer is in place until October 31, 2022. In the end those 80,000 points are worth $400 when redeemed for travel.

The TD First Class Visa Infinite card currently comes with its best ever increased welcome bonus of up to 100,000 points. You'll earn 20,000 points when make your first purchase on the card and 80,000 more points when you spend $1,500 in the first 90 days of having the card. This is one of the lower spend requirements amongst the big bonuses in the market right now. The welcome offer also includes the aforementioned along with the annual fee rebate on the primary card and additional cards in the first year. This offer is in place until May 29, 2022. In the end those 100,000 points are worth $400 when redeemed for any travel or $500 if you redeem for travel via ExpediaForTD.

The cards are closely matched up in this first category but we have to give it to the TD card for having an overall lower annual fee, lower income requirements and primarily for it's current welcome bonus as it is much easier to achieve not to mention it also provides those first year rebates on additional cards.

Rates

The HSBC World Elite Mastercard has slightly lower interest rates when compared to the TD First Class Visa Infinite card for both purchases and cash advances and by slight we mean 0.09%. The big differentiator in this category however is HSBC not charging foreign transaction fees for purchases made in currencies other than the Canadian dollar. That provides a 2.5% savings over the BMO card. By offer No Foreign Transaction fees and slightly better interest rates this category goes to the HSBC card.

Bonus Features & Benefits

On the features and benefits side there are big differences in these cards. Basically the TD First Class Visa Infinite Card does not provide any additional features or benefits like annual credits, lounge access and so on.

The HSBC World Elite Mastercard does provide an annual $100 travel enhancement credit that can be used towards travel related charges like seat selection fees, baggage fees, lounge access passes and more. The card also comes with a lounge access benefit. The benefit recently changed providers, from LoungeKey to DragonPass and is now known as Mastercard Travel Pass provided by DragonPassThis is an annual membership program that basically saves you the US$99 it would cost when buying a similar membership The membership then provides discounted access to lounges which is currently set at US$32 fee per person to enter a lounge.

Finally, the HSBC card also provides global Wi-Fi access via Boingo which includes free Wi-Fi access on select airlines including WestJet.

Picking a winner in this category is easy. It goes to HSBC since it provides additional benefits and features while the TD card does not.

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Points Earning & Redemption

Points earning on the two cards are quite similar while on the redemption side of things there are some differences. Looking at earning first, both cards have only one category of spending, travel, that sees an accelerated earn rate. The HSBC card awards 6 points per dollar spent on any travel booked on the card up to a maximum of $50,000 annually. The TD card awards 9 points per dollar spent on travel however that is only for travel booked through ExpediaForTD. If you book other travel on the card outside of ExpediaForTD you'll only earn the base points per dollar. That brings us to those base earn rates and both cards offer the same thing here - 3 points per dollar spent on all other spending. For the most part they are pretty equal here but that does change when you look at the redemption side of things.

Both of these cards strongest redemption options are for travel rewards and both have several options in that travel category. We'll first compare the most popular option and that is the book travel via book travel via any provider (IE Air Canada, WestJet, Hilton, Travel Agency etc.) and then redeem points against the charge. With the HSBC World Elite Card this is their primary travel redemption option and they give you 0.5 cents credit for each point redeemed. That makes the 6x points earned on travel purchases worth 3 cents each and 3x points on all other purchases worth 1.5 cents. For the same redemption option on the TD Card you redeem points at a rate of 250 points to $1 or a 0.4 cents credit per point. That makes the 9 points per dollar earned from ExpediaForTD purchases worth 3.6 cents each and the remainder of spending at 3 points per dollar worth 1.2 cents each. TD has one more option that can fall into any travel and that's option to book and redeem points via ExpediaForTD. With this option you can book any travel through ExpediaForTD and redeem 200 points for $1 credit. That gives a value of 0.5 cents per point making the 9 points per dollar earned worth 4.5 cents and the 3 points per dollar worth 1.5 cents. As you can see the cards are relatively comparable if you take the TD card's ExpediaForTD option and compare it to HSBC's Any Travel option but the fact that HSBC lets you book with any provider and not locking you into the constraints of Expedia makes the HSBC card the better option - yes TD has that option as well but you get less value per point.

In terms of the any airline anytime redemption the HSBC Card only lets you redeem once you have 25,000 points and then in 10,000 point increments. If you have 34,999 points, you'll only be able to redeem 25,000 of them however HSBC gives you up to 60 days after the travel charge posts to your account to redeem points. So if you are in that boat of having 34,999 points you could easily purchase something for $1 and push your points over 35,000 so that you could redeem 35,000 points. The TD card's minimum redemption is only 250 points for $1 credit and they provide a 90 day window after the charge shows up to redeem against the charge.

For the HSBC Card the travel redemption options don't end there however. It also has an option to convert points to airline programs like British Airways Executive Club, Cathay Pacific Asia Miles and Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer. You can convert the HSBC Rewards points earned on the HSBC Card to British Airways at a rate of 25,000 points to 10,000 Avios, Cathay Pacific at a rate of 25,000 points to 8,000 Asia Miles and Singapore Airlines at a rate of 25,000 points to 9,000 KrisFlyer Miles  If we use British Airways as an example it would mean you earn 1.2 to 2.4 Avios per dollar spent and since we value British Airways Executive Club Avios at no less than 1.5 cents each it works out to a 1.8% to 3.6% return. And that's a minimum - you can easily exceed those values when redeeming for business or first class flights.

Both cards also offer cash back redemption options. The HSBC card also allows to redeem points for a statement credit where you redeem 25,000 points for $75, which translates to a 0.9% to 1.8% return. The TD card allows you to redeem 400 points for $1 statement credit which works out to a 0.75% to 2.25% return on your spending.

This earn and redeem category is close to call as the earn rates are very similar so I'd have to call it a draw and thus we'll have to use redemption and value of points for redemption to call this category. Redemption makes this an easier call, with a higher base value towards any travel bookings and the option to convert to airlines the category goes to HSBC.

Insurance

This is another category where the cards give each other a run for the money as they are very similar. Both other really good insurance benefits and coverage but we'd give a slight edge to TD as the it has slightly better baggage insurance, out of province medical coverage for those over 65 and a longer duration for car rental CDW coverage. The HSBC card however does have really good out of province medical coverage of 31 days for those under 65. That's 10 days more than the TD Card. Still we give this round to the TD First Class Visa Infinite Card.

Conclusion

Here we have two cards that are very similar in terms of points earning and provide any travel any time bookings however thanks to more card benefits, no foreign transaction fees and more flexible reward options, the HSBC World Elite Mastercard is the winner.

The winner of this clash is: HSBC World Elite® Mastercard®


Key factors in HSBC's win:

 






International Loyalty Programs

 The Cards Head to Head


Here is a direct side by side comparison of the two cards in this clash!


Basics

HSBC World Elite Mastercard
HSBC World Elite® Mastercard®
TD First Classs Visa Infinite Card
TD First Class Travel® Visa Infinite* Card
Card Type Hybrid Travel Points
Annual Fee $149 $120
Limited Time Annual Fee Offer $0 in the first year $0 in the first year
Additional Card Fee $50 $50
Interest Rate 19.9%
Purchase †

22.9%
Cash Advance †
19.99%
Purchase †

22.99%
Cash Advance †
Foreign Transaction Fee 0% 2.5%
Income Requirements $80,000 personal or $150,000 household annual income $60,000 personal or $100,000 household annual income

Points Earning

HSBC World Elite Mastercard
HSBC World Elite® Mastercard®
TD First Classs Visa Infinite Card
TD First Class Travel® Visa Infinite* Card
Standard Welcome Bonus 20,000 40,000
Welcome Bonus Value* $100 $160
Limited Time Welcome Bonus 80,000* 100,000
Limited Time Welcome Bonus Value* $400 $400
Renewal or Additional Bonus None None
Travel Purchases 6 points per dollar spent^ 9 points per dollar spent (ExpediaForTD only)
3 points per dollar spent (all other travel)
Grocery Purchases 3 points per dollar spent 3 points per dollar spent
Dining Purchases 3 points per dollar spent 3 points per dollar spent
Gas & Transit Purchases 3 points per dollar spent 3 points per dollar spent
Streaming Services Purchases 3 points per dollar spent 3 points per dollar spent
All Other Purchases 3 points per dollar spent 3 points per dollar spent
^ Annual cap on bonus category spending $50,000 N/A
Value of points per $1 spent* 1.5 to 3 cents 1.2 to 3.6 cents
*Valuations are based upon redeeming the points for the any travel redemption - see the next section for cash back and other redemption options

Redemption/Exchange Options

HSBC World Elite Mastercard
HSBC World Elite® Mastercard®
TD First Classs Visa Infinite Card
TD First Class Travel® Visa Infinite* Card
Miles/Points deposited to HSBC Rewards TD Rewards
Travel Redemption Value 1,000 points = $5 1,000 points = $4 (Any travel redemption)
1,000 points = $5 (ExpediaForTD redemption)
Exchange Options Convert points to:
British Airways Executive Club
Cathay Pacific Asia Miles
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer
N/A
Cash Back Redemption option 25,000 points = $75 statement credit 400 points = $1 statement credit
Value of points for cash back redemptions 0.9% to 1.8% 0.75% to 2.25%

Benefits

HSBC World Elite Mastercard
HSBC World Elite® Mastercard®
TD First Classs Visa Infinite Card
TD First Class Travel® Visa Infinite* Card
Annual credit $100
(Towards travel enhancements only)
N/A
Business Class Lounge Access Mastercard Travel Pass provided by DragonPass N/A
Global Wi-Fi Boingo Wi-Fi N/A

Insurance

HSBC World Elite Mastercard
HSBC World Elite® Mastercard®
TD First Classs Visa Infinite Card
TD First Class Travel® Visa Infinite* Card
Common Carrier Travel Accident Insurance $500,000 $500,000
Flight Delay Insurance None None
Delayed Baggage Insurance 12 hours
$200 per trip
6 hours
up to $1,000 per person
Lost / Stolen Baggage Insurance Yes
up to $750 per person
Yes
up to $1,000 per person
Damaged Baggage Insurance Yes
up to $750 per person
None
Trip Cancellation Insurance Yes
$2,000 per person (max $5,000)
Yes
$1,500 per person (max $5,000)
Trip Interruption Insurance Yes
$2,000 per person (max $5,000)
Yes
$5,000 per person (max $25,000)
Travel Medical Insurance up to 64 years old 31 days 21 days
Travel Medical Insurance 65+ None 4 days
Auto Rental/Loss Damage Insurance 31 Days
Up to $65,000 MSRP
48 Days
Up to $65,000 MSRP
Hotel / Motel Burglary Insurance None None
Purchase Protection 90 Days
Up to $60,000 lifetime
90 Days
Up to $60,000 lifetime
Price Protection No No
Extended Warranty Plan Yes
Up to 1 extra year
Yes
Up to 1 extra year
Mobile Device Insurance None None
Link to Apply Apply Now Apply Now

* Terms and Conditions apply
®/TM Mastercard and World Elite are registered trademarks, and the circles design is a trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated. Used pursuant to licence