5 unique ways to redeem Capital One Venture miles
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Editor’s note: This guide has been updated with the latest information.
If you’re anything like me, you’ve canceled a few flights and hotel reservations this year (and last year). Travel plans have been disrupted worldwide and with that, folks have accumulated a healthy stash of points and miles and are now looking for new ways to use those travel rewards.
While the cost of travel soared this summer, we’re seeing a downward trend again across the spectrum. This means now may be the perfect time to simplify your reward travel strategy. That’s why the Capital One Venture rewards program makes more sense than ever with its uncapped earning potential and flexible redemption opportunities.
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But what makes Venture miles so valuable is their flexibility. You can use them to purchase merchandise, buy gift cards or redeem them for a statement credit — but you’ll get even more value from travel redemptions.
Luckily, Capital One has a broad definition of what purchases are considered travel expenses. In addition to obvious inclusions such as charges from airlines, hotels, trains and car rental agencies, you can also redeem your miles for vacation home rentals, limousine services, bus tickets, cruises, taxis, trips booked through your travel agent, timeshares and more. Redemption availability depends on the merchant category code assigned to them by the credit card network (Visa or Mastercard, for example).
Given the array of possibilities, let’s take a look at some of my favorite, unexpected ways to redeem Venture miles.
Vacation rentals and alternate accommodations
Since the start of the pandemic, short-term home rentals have become even more popular with travelers as an alternative to hotels. You don’t have to worry about sharing public spaces with other people, and you might even have a kitchen or private pool, which can limit the need to go out.
Vacation rental sites rarely have loyalty programs of their own, but you can often redeem Venture miles as long as the charge codes as travel.
Ride-hailing apps and public transportation
Your Uber or cab ride may not always be considered a travel purchase. But Capital One allows you to use your Venture miles on ride-hailing apps and taxis without a fuss.
If you ride the train, subway or bus, those tickets will also qualify for redemptions, though eligibility depends on how the merchant category codes. If you live in a city and rely on these public transportation methods, your Capital One Venture miles can help you erase the stress (financial stress, at least) of getting from point A to point B.
Theme park tickets
If you’re planning a future trip to a theme park, you might want to use miles to cover the cost of your admission tickets.
When purchased by themselves, theme park tickets probably won’t code as a travel expense. Fortunately, there are a few ways to use Venture miles to offset the cost of a trip to some of the most fun and exciting places on Earth.
Whether you make your theme park booking through a travel agent or purchase a theme park travel package that includes park admission and a hotel stay, there are ways to book this sort of magical trip as a travel expense.
Online travel agencies
TPG usually recommends booking travel directly with the hotel or airline when possible to keep things simple if your plans change. But, if you find an unbeatable deal through a third-party travel booking site, you can use your Venture miles to book that exact flight or hotel room. Just be sure to redeem your miles within 90 days of the travel transaction.
You can also redeem Venture miles for car rentals and virtually anything else that can be purchased through an online travel agency, since OTAs are classified as travel merchants. This flexibility provides endless redemption opportunities with your Venture miles.
Booking tours and experiences
Whether you want a big city hop-on, hop-off bus tour, a helicopter flight over Hawaii or a horseback adventure, if you can book it via a travel site (or it codes as travel on its own), you can redeem Venture miles for the experience.
There’s no shortage of ways to get amazing value out of your Capital One Venture miles in ways most other points and miles can’t reach. Beyond transferring Venture miles to travel partners, you can book travel with your Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card and redeem your miles for everything from vacation rentals to rental cars and even theme park admission tickets.
Right now, the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card allows new applicants to earn 75,000 bonus miles after spending $4,000 on the card within the first three months of account opening. On top of the welcome offer, the card earns a straightforward and unlimited 2 miles per dollar on every purchase with no bonus categories to memorize. It’s no wonder it’s considered one of the most popular fixed-value rewards credit cards on the market.
What makes these sought-after miles so popular is the ability to redeem them for unique purchases not covered by other points and miles programs. And this kind of flexibility has never been more valuable.
Official application link: Capital One Venture Rewards Card available for 75,000 bonus miles.
Featured photo courtesy of Airbnb.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
SIGN-UP BONUS: 75,000 Bonus Miles
TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,388
CARD HIGHLIGHTS: Miles are now transferrable to several airline partners
*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.
- Enjoy a one-time bonus of 75,000 miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
- Earn unlimited 2X miles on every purchase, every day
- Miles won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how many you can earn
- Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
- Earn 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options
- Use your miles to get reimbursed for any travel purchase—or redeem by booking a trip through Capital One Travel
- Transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
- No foreign transaction fees