The Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card is one of the most heavily advertised travel cards out there, but that’s not the only reason it’s so popular. If you travel often and are looking for a rewards card that has great sign-up bonuses, rewards that are easy to redeem, and a variety of other great features, Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card is simply one of the best and easiest-to-understand cards out there.
The big plus is that it is not an airline-branded card. So it does not matter which airline you choose, what hotel you stay in, or who you rent a car from. No matter how you spend your travel dollars, you can use your rewards and earn more miles at the same time.
- APR: 17.24% – 24.49% Variable Rate
- Annual Fee: $0 the first year, $95 a year after that.
- Primary feature: 2 miles earned per dollar spent on any transaction.
- Bonus: 50,000-mile bonus once you spend $3,000 in the first three months from account opening. That’s equal to $500 in travel rewards.
What’s Interesting about Capital One Venture Rewards
Apart from the high rewards rate and a great sign-on bonus, the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card offers many things other cards do not.
- You won’t be charged foreign transaction fees.
- You can get up to $100 credit toward TSA PreCheck or Global Entry when you pay for either fee with the card, thereby help you to get through the TSA lines faster (hopefully).
- Free travel accidental insurance when you book your travel with the Venture Card, with some conditions.
- Rental Car coverage when you use your card to book your rental, regardless of which company you choose.
- Extended warranties on some purchases.
These are all perks that nearly all travelers crave, and make the card extremely appealing to a wide variety of users.
Things to Consider
Like nearly any travel card out there, there are potential downsides to the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card. First, you’re going to need to have good to excellent credit to qualify. There are no options for those with poor credit.
The second drawback is the annual fee. While not outrageous, it is higher than some other travel cards. While the perks may well outweigh that cost, it is up to you to decide if that works for you. If you are a frequent traveler, the fee is easily offset by the rewards you can earn. However, if you don’t travel as often, the program may not be worth the fee.
That is, in part, because redeeming your miles for cash only earns you half of what you would by redeeming those same miles for travel. That means that a cash-back rewards card, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, might be a better option for some.
The final drawback is that if you’re a travel rewards “hacker” who likes to move miles around and get more out of them, the simple rewards program of the Venture card makes it difficult to do so. That’s because while there are travel partners you can transfer miles to, many of them offer far less value than if you redeem them through Capital One Travel Center.
How to Get the Most from this Card
If you are a heavy-duty frequent traveler, there are some great ways to use the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card. You’ll get the most out of the card by using the Venture® Rewards Credit Card and getting a direct statement credit for travel using the rewards system.
The introductory offer also is a great way to get a jump-start on miles, so even if you pay the card off every month, I recommend that you find a way to make those $3,000 in purchases in the first three months the account is open (if your budget allows for that). You’ll basically get a $500 travel bonus for doing so — well worth your efforts.
Also, if you use the card on travel expenses, watch for special deals and other offers that dramatically increase the miles you earn. You’ll get travel bonuses faster, making the most of your earning potential.
Finally, don’t forget those extra bonuses. TSA PreCheck and Global Entry are both great programs, depending on whether you travel more internationally or domestically. Car rental insurance saves you money nearly every day you rent a car, and travel accident insurance gives you great peace of mind.
Other Card Options that Might Interest You
If you’re a true travel hacker and you also want better cash-back rewards, the Chase Sapphire Preferred card mentioned above might be better for you. That card also offers a great sign-up bonus program, but rewards can be transferred to some partners with a 1:1 exchange ratio. Trips can be booked directly using the Ultimate Rewards Portal.
If you’re more interested in cash back than miles, the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card may be better for you, earning you cash back on every single purchase. There is an excellent sign-up bonus of $150 when you spend $500 on purchases over the first three months of account opening, and there’s no annual fee.
The Final Word
The Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card should be on the radar of every traveler who is looking to earn miles on everyday purchases but plans to redeem those miles for travel perks. If you travel for business or are planning a big vacation, this card can offer you a great way to save money, especially if you get in on the sign-up bonus.
If you’re looking for cash back, or if you’re looking to really hack travel rewards through point transfers and other means, you may want to look elsewhere. However, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a card with such a generous miles earning program and a simple redemption process.