Throwback Thursday: Using the Royal Mint to Meet Minimum Spend

Prior to joining the Boaringarea/Prior2Boarding team, I had over 100 posts, many of which became quite popular. Throwback Thursday will bring back some of those old gems, with some updated information.

Some credit cards have a “minimum spend,” that is, to get the sign-up bonus, or to reach a bonus tier, you have to spend X amount of $ in Y time to get the bonus. For example, to get the 60,000 MR points offered with the AMEX Platinum card (this is a referral), you have to spend $1000 in 3 months. Business cards typically have much higher minimum spends, and occasionally, we have seen minimum spends reaching $10,000 (was an offer from the RBC Avion Visa).

The Canadian Royal Mint offers a number of coins that sell for their face value: 20/20, 50/50, and 100/100. As these are legitimate coins, they can be deposited at a bank* for face value (though the teller will give you a hard time). Back in the heyday, I was able to march into the Royal Mint store in Ottawa and buy them out of these face-value coins using any credit card. With 2 points per dollar spent, this was extremely lucrative. Sadly, I suspect in response to me going in daily, the Royal Mint store has imposed purchasing limits in store and online. Nonetheless, buying these coins, in-person or online, is an excellent way of very quickly meeting a minimum spend on a credit card.

For example, you can currently buy $375 of face-value coins (max of 3 of 25/50/50) on the store, which is currently offering free shipping. Wait a week, get the coins, deposit them at your bank, and pay off your card. Voila! You have reached minimum spend very quickly and for free. If you’re close to a Royal Mint store, you can buy these coins, again at a 3 per-person limit, however, each person in attendance will get that limit, which can all go on one card. Further, you can go in-person as many times as you want, each visit qualifying for a 3 coin (of each type) limit.

I have received reports of banks denying these coins. I have deposited these coins countless time. I have contacted the banks for an official response. I will post those responses as I get them.

Royal Bank of Canada (RBC):

Face Value

When numismatic coins are presented for redemption the Sales Unit must redeem them at the face value shown on the coin.

Numismatic coins are legal tender and a service fee is not to be charged.

Note: The coins may have more than face value if negotiated through a coin dealer.

Laurentian Bank:

We inform you that it is not possible to deposit Royal Mint coins in our branch’s.

We regret that we cannot be of further assistance to you in this matter.


    1. Refer them to the policy. I just did this at my local RBC branch, and although it took awhile, they figured it out and future deposits have been easy.

  1. There is a Royal mint below my office so I have been going religiously everyday, twice a day with a coworker which allows me to purchase $5000 a day which is a free North America flight every work week. Unfortunately, yesterday I was informed that the mint will stop releasing Numismatic coins to combat the rise in buying to gain points. Get to the mint while you still can!

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