6 reasons to get the Capital One Venture Rewards card
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Editor’s note: This post has been updated with new information.
The world of points, miles and rewards credit cards can be complex, full of unfamiliar terms, acronyms and abbreviations that can confuse even the most experienced users. That’s why a card such as the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card can be a much-needed breath of fresh air and simplicity.
Plus, it currently has a sign-up bonus of 60,000 miles (after meeting minimum spending requirements), making the Venture card even more attractive.
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While the Venture Rewards card can be a great first step into the high-value world of transferable points (especially with its all-new transfer partners and improved ratios), you also have the option to redeem your miles against the cost of most travel expenses charged to the card. The travel category is quite broad and can cover anything from subway fares to guided tours and even campground reservations. But if you enjoy the thrill of finding and booking a high-value premium-cabin award, the Venture Rewards card offers the ability to transfer your miles to 16 airlines and three hotel partners. In April, Capital One announced major improvements to its transfer program by adding four new loyalty programs to the mix.
Another major change is that Capital One has improved its transfer ratio (1:1) for seven airlines and two hotel loyalty programs. Before, Capital One only offered 2:1.5 or 2:1 transfer ratios for all of its programs. Now, you can transfer your hard-earned Venture miles at a 1:1 ratio to several programs, including Avianca LifeMiles and AeroMexico Club Premier. These are all positive, fascinating updates to make the Venture card that much more valuable in today’s ever-changing travel landscape.
With this improved 1:1 ratio, you can think of the Venture Rewards card as earning up to 2% cash back toward travel charges or up to 2 partner airline miles or hotel points per dollar charged, whichever gives you more value. Perhaps the best part is that you can mix and match these redemption options as you see fit, giving you a valuable amount of flexibility.
Coupled with the addition of temporary redemption options, there are more ways than ever to use your Venture Rewards card. Here are six reasons why the Venture Rewards card is one of the best rewards credit cards to have in your wallet.
Strong sign-up bonus
The Capital One Venture card offers sign-up bonus of 60,000 miles after spending $3,000 on the card within the first three months of account opening.
If you plan to transfer your miles to hotel or airline partners, you can think of this sign-up bonus as being worth around $1,020, as TPG estimates that Venture miles will be worth 1.7 cents each in our updated monthly valuations (not provided by issuers). Of course, it’s possible to get even more value, depending on which partners you leverage and which awards you book.
Many other credit cards offer bonus points on common purchase categories such as groceries, gas or restaurants. But what about purchases that don’t fall under this umbrella, such as online shopping, gym memberships, or kitchen appliances?
Once you meet the spending requirement to earn the sign-up bonus, you’ll want to use the Capital One Venture card for purchases that don’t earn a bonus on any other card. This is because you’ll earn 2 miles per dollar on every purchase you make — like that new couch or TV you’ve been coveting — with no annual limits to worry about.
That translates to a consistent return of 2% back or one-two airline miles or hotel points per dollar spent, making the Venture card one of the best options for everyday spending.
The simplicity of the Capital One Venture card shines through in its redemption process. To redeem your miles at a fixed value toward travel charges you put on the card, log in to your Venture Rewards account, choose eligible purchases made in the last 90 days and cover them with your miles.
Unlike other fixed-value cards, there’s no minimum redemption amount. Let’s say you book a domestic award ticket and pay the $5.60 in taxes with your Venture card. You can use 560 miles — as each mile is worth 1 cent — to cover this small purchase.
New transfer partners and improved transfer ratios
It’s not often that issuers add new transfer partners — and certainly not four programs at once.
These programs are fantastic additions to Capital One’s (already) long list of partners.
To add to these major changes, Capital One has improved transfer ratios for Avianca LifeMiles, Etihad Guest, Cathay Pacific Asia Miles, Aeromexico Club Premier, Finnair Plus, Qantas Frequent Flyer and Wyndham Rewards — allowing you to transfer your Venture miles at a 1:1 rate for these programs. You will be able to transfer your Venture and Spark miles at a 1:1 ratio for TAP Air Portugal Miles&Go and Choice Privileges, too.
1:1 transfer tier
- Aeromexico Club Premier.
- Avianca LifeMiles.
- Cathay Pacific Asia Miles.
- Choice Privileges (starting later this year).
- Etihad Guest.
- Finnair Plus.
- Qantas Frequent Flyer.
- TAP Air Portugal Miles&Go.
- Wyndham Rewards.
2:1.5 transfer tier
- Air Canada Aeroplan.
- Air France-KLM Flying Blue.
- Alitalia MilleMiglia.
- British Airways Avios.
- EVA Infinity MileageLands.
- JetBlue TrueBlue.
- Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles.
2:1 transfer tier
- Accor Live Limitless.
- Emirates Skywards.
- Singapore KrisFlyer.
Capital One’s transfer partners are far-reaching, ideal for a wide variety of award travel bookings.
With 19 programs in total, Capital One offers one of the most loyalty partners of any transferrable points program available. You have airlines covering all three major alliances (Qantas in Oneworld, Avianca in Star Alliance and Alitalia in SkyTeam, for example), along with several non-alliance airlines, such as Etihad and Emirates. Some of these options, such as British Airways Avios, are also partners for other transferable points currencies, but others, such as Finnair, are unique to Capital One.
You also have great diversity within the programs themselves. Many of these partners, such as Cathay Pacific and Qantas, use distance-based award charts (which generally means you’re better off redeeming them for short flights). Some use zone-based award charts (such as Avianca, which is a great way to book cheap premium-cabin Star Alliance awards). Others, such as Air France-KLM, use variable pricing.
Valuable ongoing perks
Although the Capital One Venture card probably isn’t actively competing with benefits provided by ultra-premium cards such as the Chase Sapphire Reserve or The Platinum Card® from American Express, the card offers some modest perks. They include secondary car rental insurance, travel accident insurance and extended warranty protection. Benefits only available to accounts approved for the Visa Signature card. Terms apply.
The Venture Rewards card also offers an up-to-$100 Global Entry credit or $85 TSA PreCheck fee rebate when you charge the application fee to your card. The perk is available every four years. If you already have Global Entry or TSA PreCheck, you can use this rebate for a friend’s or family member’s application fee instead. This makes the Venture one of the only cards with an annual fee under $100 to offer this perk.
Low annual fee and no foreign transaction fees
To wrap it all up, the Capital One Venture card only charges a $95 annual fee — a low cost for such a potentially valuable card. It’s easy to offset the annual fee’s cost between the easy-to-use earning structure, redemption process, improved transfer program and perks. As a bonus, you won’t pay foreign transaction fees with the Capital One Venture when making purchases overseas.
The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is a great hybrid credit card that is a strong candidate for an all-in-one card if you don’t want a wallet full of options.
It earns miles that can be redeemed for a fixed value or transferred to get you potentially greater value with a wide variety of airline and hotel partners. That’s one reason why the Venture card is a favorite of The Points Guy himself, Brian Kelly. We can’t help but love this card even more now with the improved transfer ratio and added loyalty partners.
You can keep things very simple and flexible by redeeming your miles for the travel purchases you put on the card. Still, on the other hand, if you decide to study award charts and look for sweet spots, you’ll have 16 airlines and three hotel programs to choose from in the Capital One transfer partner lineup.
Application link: Capital One Venture Rewards Card available for a limited-time with up to 60,000 bonus miles.
Additional reporting by Stella Shon.
Featured photo by Wyatt Smith/The Points Guy.
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