The most exciting premium card to come around in years: A review of Capital One Venture X

Nov 16, 2021

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Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card overview

The Capital One Venture X represents the issuer’s first foray into the world of premium travel rewards cards and knocks it out of the park. With an annual fee that undercuts the competition and plentiful perks that are easy to understand, the card is nearly a no-brainer for travelers ranging from luxury seekers to the more budget-minded. Chase and Amex, take notice.
Card rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

In 2021, premium credit cards, such as The Platinum Card® from American Express and Chase Sapphire Reserve, took center stage with major updates, including the addition of new perks and statement credits.

However, it’s time for Capital One’s new Venture X to share in the limelight. While fanfare associated with a new credit card launch isn’t anything unique, the hype surrounding Venture X’s launch in early November was well deserved.

With a $395 annual fee, the Venture X is more affordable than its main competitors. Rather than overcomplicating its benefits as other premium cards have done, the Venture X makes its advantages incredibly easy to use. In fact, it’s easy to recoup the card’s yearly fee simply by maximizing two of the card’s primary perks.

If you’re considering the Venture X, here is everything you need to know before clicking that apply button.

Official application link: Capital One Venture X with 100,000 bonus miles after you spend $10,000 on purchases in the first six months from account opening and up to $200 in statement credits for vacation rental purchases (e.g., Airbnb and Vrbo) in the first cardholder year.

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Who is the Capital One Venture X for?

The Capital One Venture X is a premium rewards card intended for folks looking to elevate their travel experience without having to pay an eye-watering annual fee.

To that end, the card offers $300 in annual statement credits toward bookings made through Capital One Travel, 10,000 bonus miles every account anniversary (for even more free travel), extensive airport lounge access, excellent travel protections and rental car privileges — and even extends some of these benefits to authorized users (you can add up to four for free).

Capital One Lounge at DFW. (Photo by Wyatt Smith/The Points Guy)

Furthermore, if you haven’t been paying attention, Capital One has been dramatically improving its rewards program over the past few years. The issuer added a variety of new airline and hotel partners and you can now transfer Capital One miles, like those earned with the Venture X, at a 1:1 ratio to most of them, which makes the card even more of a standout in an already crowded marketplace.

Capital One recently opened its first-ever proprietary airport lounge at Dallas-Fort Worth International (DFW) and has more lounges on the horizon where cardholders will be able to take advantage of gourmet grab-and-go food, sophisticated workspaces and even Peloton studios to get in a preflight workout.

In short, it’s an exciting time to be a Capital One cardholder, and the Venture X is just another major reason why.

Related: From Peloton to premium eats: What you can expect inside Capital One’s airport lounges

Capital One Venture X sign-up bonus

(Photo by John Gribben for The Points Guy)

At launch, the Venture X card’s sign-up bonus is 100,000 miles after spending $10,000 on purchases in the first six months. In addition, cardholders will receive up to $200 in statement credits for vacation rental purchases (like Airbnb and Vrbo) charged to the account within the first year of account opening.

According to TPG’s latest valuations, 100,000 Capital One miles are worth $1,850 thanks to the outsize value you can get from transferring Capital One miles to the program’s airline and hotel partners.

And if you take the vacation rental statement credit at face value, the sign-up bonus is worth $2,050, which is pretty incredible.

Related: The 8 most pressing questions about the new Capital One Venture X card

Main benefits and perks of the Capital One Venture X

While a $395 annual fee might initially seem like a deterrent, it’s easy to see how the Venture X’s perks can offset the yearly cost with minimal effort. Below, you’ll find a full list of card benefits — and a deeper dive into three specific ones.

Benefits overview

  • Statement credit: Up to $300 back in statement credit annually for bookings made through Capital One Travel.
  • Anniversary bonus: 10,000 bonus miles every account anniversary, starting on your first anniversary (worth $100 toward travel).
  • Lounge access: Complimentary access for cardholders, authorized users and up to two guests per visit to Capital One Lounges and to more than 1,300 Priority Pass lounges worldwide.
  • Authorized users: Up to four authorized users can be added at no charge, and they also get Capital One Lounge access with up to two guests as well as Priority Pass.
  • Rental car status: The primary cardholder as well as authorized users receive complimentary Hertz President’s Circle status.
  • Global Entry or TSA PreCheck: Up to $100 in statement credits for either TSA PreCheck or Global Entry.
  • Trip cancellation and interruption insurance: Up to $2,000 per person for you and immediate family members for prepaid, nonrefundable tickets.*
  • Trip delay reimbursement: Up to $500 per person for reasonable expenses like hotel rooms, food, toiletries or clothes when your flight is delayed overnight or by six hours or more.
  • Lost luggage reimbursement: Up to $3,000 per covered trip if the airline damages or loses your bags.*
  • Cellphone protection: By using the card to pay your monthly wireless bill, you’re eligible for up to $800 in coverage per claim with a maximum of two claims and $1,600 per 12-month period. A $50 deductible applies per occurrence.
  • Primary rental car insurance: Up to $75,000 for damage caused by collision or theft to a rental car.*
  • Purchase, extended warranty and return protection: Up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per account on purchases; warranties extended by an additional year; returns up to $300 per item and $1,000 per account.*

*Benefits available on Visa Infinite cards

Now, let’s look at the three benefits every cardholder should be able to maximize.

Capital One Travel: $300 statement credit

(Screenshot courtesy of Capital One)

The $300 annual statement credit perk with Capital One Travel is simple. Every account year, you receive up to $300 in statement credits toward purchases made through Capital One Travel, including hotel bookings, car rentals and airfare.

However, the credit is not applicable to travel purchases made through any other channel. While that makes it more restrictive than the annual $300 travel credit available with the Chase Sapphire Reserve, it is still relatively easy to use and substantially offsets the true cost of the card’s $395 fee — as long as you actually take advantage of it.

While there are some downsides to using a third-party booking service (notably elite perks are usually not recognized for hotels and rental cars), Capital One has made significant strides in the travel booking experience, most recently investing in booking platform Hopper and adding customer-friendly features like price-drop prediction and a best-price guarantee.

Anniversary bonus: 10,000 miles

The card’s other main annual benefit is another one that’s simple to understand. Starting with their first account anniversary, cardmembers will receive 10,000 bonus miles each year.

According to the latest TPG valuations, 10,000 Capital One miles is worth $185, thanks to the potential value from airline and hotel transfer partners. However, if you were to redeem the 10,000 miles at a fixed value on travel purchases, you’d “only” get $100 in value, which is still pretty great.

Taken together with the $300 Capital One Travel portal statement credit, and cardholders are looking at an easy $400 in value from their card each year, more than offsetting its $395 annual fee.

Lounge access (for authorized users, too)

Capital One Lounge at DFW. (Photo by Wyatt Smith/The Points Guy)

Capital One’s lounge ambitions are clear. The issuer wants to take on the incumbent player in the space, American Express, by building out its own airport lounges and providing access to Priority Pass’ global network of lounges as well. (For Capital One, that Priority Pass benefit extends to include airport restaurants, too.)

Primary Venture X cardholders can enter Capital One Lounges and Priority Pass spaces with up to two guests for free.

What’s more, Venture X authorized users also receive complimentary access for themselves and up to two guests per visit to Capital One Lounges and to more than 1,300 Priority Pass lounges worldwide, and you can add up to four authorized users for free, which means one Venture X account with four authorized users added could get 15 people into airport lounges around the world, which is a pretty fantastic perk.

How to earn Capital One miles

Earn 5 miles per dollar when booking airfare through the Capital One Travel portal. (Photo by Eric Rosen/The Points Guy)

In terms of ongoing earnings, the Venture X has a simple earning structure. It accrues:

  • 10 miles per dollar on hotels and car rentals booked via Capital One Travel.
  • 5 miles per dollar on flights booked via Capital One Travel.
  • 2 miles per dollar on other purchases.

This simplicity builds off of the $95-per-year Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card, a product that has been around for over a decade. In that way, the Venture X represents the best of both worlds — high earning potential on travel purchases, specifically, but a solid everyday earning rate that’s easy to keep track of.

How to redeem Capital One miles

Capital One miles can be redeemed several ways, but transferring miles to travel partners probably represents the most lucrative opportunities.

Transfer miles

Over the years, Capital One has made significant improvements to its mileage program, including shifting from solely fixed-rate redemptions to adding a host of airline and hotel transfer partners, most of which now operate at a 1:1 ratio.

Here is the full list of transfer partners and their respective transfer ratios from Capital One.

Transfer partner Transfer ratio Notes
Aeromexico Club Premier 1:1
Air Canada Aeroplan 1:1 Improved ratio as of Oct. 7, 2021
Air France-KLM Flying Blue 1:1 Improved ratio as of Oct. 7, 2021
Avianca LifeMiles 1:1
Accor Live Limitless 2:1
British Airways Avios 1:1 Improved ratio as of Oct. 7, 2021
Cathay Pacific Asia Miles 1:1
Choice Privileges Hotels 1:1 Coming later in 2021
Emirates Skywards 1:1 Improved ratio as of Oct. 7, 2021
Etihad Guest 1:1
EVA Infinity MileageLands 2:1.5
Finnair Plus 1:1
Qantas Frequent Flyer 1:1
Singapore KrisFlyer 1:1 Improved ratio as of Oct. 7, 2021
TAP Air Portugal Miles&Go 1:1
Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles 1:1 Improved ratio as of Oct. 7, 2021
Wyndham Rewards 1:1

By utilizing transfer partners, there are a number of sweet spot redemption opportunities, including economy flights to Hawaii for just 7,500 Capital One miles by transferring to Turkish Miles&Smiles and redeeming for United flights, business-class flights to South America for 50,000 Capital One miles transferred to TAP and redeemed on United, and much, much more.

Related: 3 sunny trips you can book with the Capital One Venture X’s 100,000-mile sign-up bonus

Fixed-value redemptions

If you consider simplicity more important than overall value, Capital One also offers several fixed-value redemption options. Those include:

  • Book new travel: You can book new travel directly through Capital One Travel at a value of 1 cent per mile.
  • Pay off travel purchases: You can pay off travel purchases made in the past 90 days on your card statement without having to worry about the complexities of loyalty programs. You’ll again get a flat value of 1 cent per mile.
  • Redeem for gift cards: You can use miles for gift cards at the same rate of 1 cent per mile.
  • Redeem for cash back: You should do everything possible to avoid this option, as it will only provide a redemption value of 0.5 cents per mile.

Which cards compete with the Capital One Venture X?

(Photo by John Gribben for The Points Guy)

With a $395 annual fee, the Venture X falls within the premium travel cards category. Two main competitors come to mind: the Amex Platinum and the Chase Sapphire Reserve. Both cards also earn transferable points currencies: Amex Membership Rewards and Chase Ultimate Rewards, respectively.

However, both of these cards come with significantly higher annual fees — $550 for the Sapphire Reserve and $695 for the Platinum (see rates and fees).

Amex Platinum

The Venture X comes out ahead of the Amex Platinum in one key area: simplicity.

The Amex Platinum has a complicated assortment of benefits and perks, including at least 10 different built-in statement credits that are allotted anywhere from monthly to every four years, making them difficult to keep track of. While you can offset the card’s hefty $695 annual fee with these included credits, it is a lot to manage — not to mention some of these perks might not be useful for certain cardmembers, such as a SoulCycle credit.

On the other hand, while Capital One has grand ambitions with its own lounge network, Amex has a significant head start with Centurion Lounges at more than 14 airports, as well as the Global Lounge Collection, which includes Priority Pass, Delta Sky Clubs (when flying on the same day with Delta) and more, so certain flyers who hit the lounge a lot might prefer the Amex Platinum for this sole benefit.

Chase Sapphire Reserve

Chase Sapphire Reserve cardholders earn bonus points at similar rates to the Venture X when booking through the Ultimate Rewards travel portal, with 10 points per dollar on hotel and car rental purchases and 5 points per dollar on airfare. However, they also earn 3 points per dollar on other travel and dining, which beats the Venture X.

The Ultimate Rewards program has some great transfer partners that Capital One does not, such as United MileagePlus and World of Hyatt. In addition, the Chase Sapphire Reserve has a dedicated 1.5-cent redemption rate for travel booked through its portal, significantly surpassing the 1 cent per mile you get with the Venture and Venture X cards.

That said, the Chase Sapphire Reserve’s $550 annual fee is much higher than the Venture X’s. Given that it’s been around for a few years now, you also might already have it or its mid-tier counterpart, the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card.

In that case, the Venture X makes a lot of sense since it allows you to stack further statement credits and perks while accumulating points in another valuable transferable points program. And when it comes to travel rewards, having more options and more flexibility for redeeming your points is always good.

Bottom line

The launch of the Venture X is a key turning point for Capital One.

With simple rewards and overall solid value, the card has mass appeal, especially for those searching for (or switching from) a premium travel rewards card.

In addition, there are a lot of under-the-radar perks on Venture X, including Visa Infinite benefits with a robust array of trip, luggage, car rental and purchase protections. Add in a burgeoning network of airport lounges, no-fee authorized users and Capital One’s robust transfer partners, and you have a card that is nearly a no-brainer.

Official application link: Capital One Venture X with 100,000 bonus miles after you spend $10,000 on purchases in the first six months and up to $200 in statement credits for vacation rental purchases.

Featured photo by John Gribben/The Points Guy.

For rates and fees of the Amex Platinum Card, please click here.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 50,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Plus, earn up to $100 back in statement credits for eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants in the first three months of card membership.

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.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 50,000 Bonus Miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
  • Plus, earn up to $100 back in statement credits for eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants with your card within the first 3 months of membership.
  • 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.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

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.

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