Simple way to earn cash back: Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards review
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Editor’s note: This post has been updated with the latest credit card information.
Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card Overview
The Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card is a good card for those who prefer to keep their rewards simple. This card earns a flat rate of 1.5% cash back on all purchases, which is easily redeemable and requires no minimum. However, the Quicksilver’s rewards aren’t quite as flexible as those of some of its competitors, so if you plan to expand your card portfolio at some point, then you may want to consider a different card. Card Rating*: ⭐⭐⭐½
*Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG’s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
The Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card may slightly outpace the perks of other cash-back cards with its respectable sign-up bonus and no annual fee — but it also requires an excellent credit rating from its applicants and has a few drawbacks worth pointing out. Quicksilver’s simple earning structure may be appealing, but what makes it even more so is the ability to convert the cash back you earn on it into miles with the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card (if you have that card as well), which can then be redeemed on 16 airline and three hotel transfer partners. Let’s dive into the details.
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Who is this card for?
The Capital One Quicksilver is best for people who use one card for everything because it has a simple, flat 1.5% cash-back earning rate. If you don’t use bonus spending categories such dining, entertainment and groceries, or you prefer not to juggle cards when you’re out and about, then you should at least be earning more than 1% cash back on all spending. However, you can likely improve on the Quicksilver’s earning rate, as we’ll see shortly.
Capital One is currently offering Quicksilver Cash Rewards cardholders a $200 cash bonus after spending $500 on purchases within the first three months of account opening. That’s typical for cash-back cards with no annual fee, and it has the advantage of a low spending requirement that most people should be able to meet without too much effort. But compared to the best travel credit cards, which can offer sign-up bonuses worth thousands of dollars, this $200 is just some extra cash in your pocket.
Main benefits and perks
The Capital One Quicksilver isn’t the card to get if you want perks such as lounge access or travel credits, which are more often included with premium credit cards. However, the Quicksilver does include some benefits, such as charging no foreign transaction fees. That’s a perk that, while now nearly universal on credit cards with annual fees, is a little rarer on no-annual-fee cards. Other benefits include:
- 24-hour travel assistance services if your credit card is lost or stolen
- Travel accident insurance
- Extended warranty
- Concierge service
- Exclusive culinary experiences, sports and music events through Capital One Access
How to earn cash back
There’s nothing special when it comes to earning cash back on the Capital One Quicksilver, merely a flat 1.5% on all purchases with no bonus categories. If you don’t have one category of high spending, then it’s fine to earn the same amount on all purchases. However, if you make a great number of purchases each month in one particular category — such as dining or groceries — then you’ll likely want to consider a card that has that fields bonus earning in that category.
How to redeem cash back
You can redeem cash back earned on the Capital One Quicksilver as a statement credit, check or gift card, or you can apply it directly to a specific charge you on your statement and cover it that way. There’s also no minimum redemption amount — all you have to do is sign in to your account via the app or your computer and simply select your preference.
This is similar to many cash-back cards, but it’s nowhere near as flexible as the Chase Freedom Unlimited, which also earns 1.5% cash back, but can be turned into Ultimate Rewards points that can be transferred to premium Chase cards — the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, Chase Sapphire Reserve and Ink Business Preferred Credit Card — and turned into valuable travel rewards.
What cards compete with the Quicksilver?
The Capital One Quicksilver is similar to its sister card, the Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card, which also earns 1.5% cash back on all purchases. The main differences are that the QuicksilverOne is for those with limited or average credit, and it comes with a $39 annual fee and no sign-up bonus. Beyond that, the perks and cash back are essentially identical. So if you have a credit rating high enough to qualify for the Quicksilver card, that’s the better choice between the two.
However, when it comes to earning cash back, even if you’re looking for a card with a flat earning rate on all purchases, you’ll definitely do better with the Citi® Double Cash Card, which earns 2% on all purchases (1% when you buy and 1% as you pay) and also has no annual fee.
On the other hand, if you’re willing to try out bonus categories, the Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card earns 3% cash back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart® and Target®) and 1% on all other purchases, which might make sense depending on your spending habits.
If you’re going to go with a 1.5% cash back card, the Chase Freedom Unlimited also has no annual fee and earns 1.5% cash back on most purchases. However, it also accrues 5% cash back on Chase travel booked through Ultimate Rewards, 3% back at drug stores and on dining — much higher earning rates on easy-to-maximize categories.
What’s more, as part of the Chase Ultimate Rewards ecosystem, the Freedom Unlimited has much greater potential and upside when it comes to redeeming that cash back. Just pair the Freedom Unlimited with a premium Chase card such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card or the Ink Business Preferred Credit Card and you can turn your cash back into transferable Ultimate Rewards points that can be converted into airline miles and hotel points with the program’s partners, potentially doubling the value of what you earned from the card.
Related: Best cash-back credit cards
The Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card offers a decent cash-back earning rate and a solid sign-up bonus. However, there are other cash-back cards that offer more generous earnings, and still other cards that feature more flexible ways to redeem your rewards for greater value. The only reason to pick the Quicksilver over other cash back credit cards is if you value the $200 sign-up bonus. Otherwise, you’ll probably do better looking elsewhere.
Featured photo by The Points Guy.
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Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
- Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
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- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
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