How long do Capital One miles take to transfer?

Feb 13, 2020

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Editor’s note: This guide is regularly refreshed with updated information. This post most recently was updated on Feb. 14 to include one data point for Accor transfer times. 


Back in 2018, Capital One announced big changes by offering card holders the option of transferring their miles to travel partners, such as hotels and airlines, for the first time in Cap One’s history. This announcement had the pleasant effect of catapulting TPG’s valuations for Capital One Rewards miles from 1 cent to 1.4 cents apiece, for the newfound ability to use miles toward booking flights of outsized value.

Since then, Capital One has continued to add value to its rewards program and cards such as the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card, by periodically bringing new travel partners on board and improving transfer rates. The latest two additions are Wyndham and Accor, which joined the Cap One transfer family on Feb. 3, 2020.

Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

The information for the Capital One cards has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Related: Here’s how Capital One is changing my financial strategy in 2020

How long Capital One miles take to transfer

How quickly can you expect to see your Capital One miles in your loyalty program account? TPG decided to test and find out. For each of the program’s 17 total transfer partners, TPG staffers transferred 1,000 points from our Capital One accounts to see how long it would take for them to show up in our loyalty program accounts.

Thus far, Accor’s transfer times have been the most dilatory of all the Cap One transfer partners by far; TPG’s Zach Griff initiated a transfer on Feb. 3 and is still waiting for those points to post as of a whopping eleven days later. I made my own points transfer on Feb. 12, and the points showed up in my account a day later, according to the Accor timestamp.

Here’s what we found:

Program Transfer Time

Aeromexico Club Premier

Instant

Air Canada Aeroplan

Instant

Air France-KLM Flying Blue

Instant

Alitalia MilleMiglia

Instant

Avianca LifeMiles

Instant

ALL Accor Live Limitless

varies; 1 business day

Cathay Pacific Asia Miles

5 business days

Emirates Skywards

Instant

Etihad Guest

24-hour turnaround

EVA Infinity MileageLands

36-hour turnaround

Finnair Plus

Instant

 Hainan Fortune Wings Club

36-hour turnaround

JetBlue TrueBlue

Instant

Qantas Frequent Flyer

24-hour turnaround

Qatar Airways Privilege Club

24-hour turnaround

Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer

36-hour turnaround

Wyndham Rewards

Instant

Note that the times listed above represent my personal experience, and shouldn’t be taken as hard and fast rules. Your transfer experience may be faster or slower, but these times can serve as guidelines for when you plan your own trip.

Related: How to maximize Capital One miles

Tips for transferring Capital One miles

Good news: In the past, the Capital One partner portal defaulted to transferring all of your Capital One miles to the airline partner of your choice and you had to back the number down from there. The pop-up screen doesn’t add an additional layer of verification before that all-important “Complete Transfer” button.

However, we’re pleased to announce that this customer un-friendly issue has been resolved. When I transferred points from my Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card to Accor today, the portal defaulted to transferring just 1,000 rewards points at a time:

Unfortunately, Capital One still doesn’t store your airline membership number for any of the partners, so you’ll have to pull up your account info each time you transfer points to an airline.

This is just a slight inconvenience, but for those of us used to the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal that saves that information, it’s still an extra step to take. If you do find yourself in a scenario where you’re scrambling for some last-minute points to top up your account, here are a few tips:

Put your award reservation on hold prior to transferring

Not all airline programs allow you to do this, but those that do make things much easier. For example, Singapore KrisFlyer allows you to hold an award reservation so long as you have 50% of the necessary miles in your account.

Choose flights that have more than one available award seat

This is helpful in case someone else books before your miles show up. Use tools like ExpertFlyer to find how many award seats are available on a flight. You can also do a search for three or four passengers — that way, you can determine roughly how many seats are available for award tickets.

Select uncommon routes

You can improve your chances by flying routes that are less popular or originate from non-hubs, since those often have better award availability.

Related: Best airline award chart sweet spots

Let availability determine your destination

If you have some flexibility and your original itinerary is no longer an option because availability has changed, one solution is to choose your destination based on which awards are still bookable. Also keep in mind that award availability changes frequently and can increase (or decrease) as you get closer to your departure date. Check regularly and be ready to act quickly when seats you want do open up.

Related: Beginner’s guide to award searches on ExpertFlyer

Earning Capital One miles

You can earn transferable Capital One miles on the following cards:

Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card

  • Current bonus: Earn 50,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening
  • Benefits: 2x miles per dollar on all purchases, Global Entry/TSA PreCheck application free credit (up to $100)
  • Annual fee: $95 (waived first year)

Read the full card review.

Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card

  • Current bonus: Earn 20,000 bonus miles after you spend $1,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening
  • Benefits: 1.25x miles per dollar on all purchases
  • Annual fee: $0

Capital One® Spark® Miles Select for Business

  • Current bonus: Earn a one-time bonus of 20,000 miles after you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening
  • Benefits: 1.5x miles on all purchases, free employee cards
  • Annual fee: $0

Read the full card review.

Bottom line

The good news is that nine Capital One hotel and airline transfer partners have instant transfer times in our tests. The bad news is that not all of the partners have instant transfer times and that at least one partner transfer is taking a large number of days to complete, though hopefully, that lag will improve with time.

Featured photo by The Points Guy.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.