Capital One simplifies how you redeem miles, adds 6 more airlines to its 1:1 transfer tier
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Editor’s note: This post has been updated with the latest information including Capital One’s expansion of 1:1 transfer partners.
Capital One has made another set of sweeping changes to its reward miles program.
Now, Capital One miles transfer at an improved 1:1 ratio to six more of its travel partners, including Air Canada Aeroplan, Air France KLM Flying Blue, British Airways Avios, Emirates Skywards, Singapore KrisFlyer and Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles.
Only transfers to Accor Live Limitless and EVA Infinity MileageLands continue at less advantageous rates.
The move puts Capital One’s rewards program onto a more equal footing compared to competitors such as American Express Membership Rewards and Chase Ultimate Rewards. Here’s what else you need to know about these developments, and what makes them so compelling.
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Capital One’s latest changes
Capital One has made several significant improvements to its mileage program over the past few years, including shifting from just fixed-rate redemptions to adding airline and hotel transfer partners, improving mileage transfer rates…and adding even more airline and hotel partners.
The issuer also plans to launch its own network of airport lounges with the first opening at Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW) this fall.
Today’s announcement ranks as another major step forward for Capital One’s miles program and improves the value that cardholders can expect to get from their hard-earned rewards.
Six partners become more valuable
In the table below, you can see that the following six programs have moved from either the 2:1.5 transfer ratio or 2:1 transfer ratio to a much more simple (and valuable) 1:1 transfer ratio.
|Transfer partner||Previous transfer ratio||New transfer ratio (as of Oct. 7, 2021)|
|Air Canada Aeroplan||2:1.5||1:1|
|Air France KLM Flying Blue||2:1.5||1:1|
|British Airways Avios||2:1.5||1:1|
|Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles||2:1.5||1:1|
And when transfer partners become more worthwhile to use, so too does the program overall.
This brings Capital One’s rewards program more in line with that of other credit-card issuers, such as Chase, whose Ultimate Rewards points transfer on a 1:1 basis to its 14 airline and hotel partners.
18 total transfer partners
Speaking of transfer partners…Capital One currently features 18 of them: 14 airline frequent-flyer programs and three hotel loyalty programs. Now, a total of 15 of them will enjoy the 1:1 transfer basis, with three lagging behind. Here’s where they stand.
|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|
|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 2021|
|Emirates Skywards||1:1||Improved ratio as of Oct. 7, 2021|
|Etihad Guest||1:1||50% transfer bonus from Oct. 1 through Oct. 31, 2021|
|EVA Infinity MileageLands||2:1.5|
|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|
As previously announced, Choice Privileges will launch with a 1:1 ratio later this year.
Most notably, this change means that you can now effectively earn 2 airline miles (or 2 hotel points) with the six additional partners (for a total of 15) for every dollar you spend on the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card or the Capital One Spark Miles for Business — without needing to worry about maximizing bonus categories.
Simply put, that’s a fantastic new value proposition for both of these cards.
Capital One miles transfer sweet spots
Among the best transfer options to keep in mind with Capital One mIles, you can use British Airways’ Combine My Avios feature to effectively transfer to Iberia Plus, too — by transferring your Capital One miles to British Airways and then from there to Iberia (as long as your accounts have been open 90 days). With business-class flights on Iberia from the U.S. to Madrid (MAD) starting at just 34,000 Avios one-way and requiring minimal fuel surcharges, this can be an outstanding new option for your miles.
Meanwhile, the Miles&Smiles program can be a great option for snagging Turkish-operated flights to Europe. It also offers perhaps the single best domestic award sweet spot within the U.S.: United flights from the lower 48 to Hawaii for just 7,500 miles each way. With the new 1:1 transfer ratio, that means that just you’ll need just 7,500 Capital One miles to get a one-way flight from the mainland to the Aloha State.
The Choice Privileges program is another excellent option that should soon be available, and some TPG staffers see it as an incredibly underrated hotel loyalty program. Sure, it has budget hotels like Econo Lodge and Comfort Inn, but you can also redeem points at upscale brands like Ascend Hotel Collection and Cambria Hotels.
Finally, while TAP Air Portugal Miles & Go won’t be as exciting to most TPG readers as BA and Turkish, the addition of its Miles&Go program highlights another key part of Capital One’s announcement.
Earning miles with the Capital one Venture
These latest announcements make the current sign-up bonus on the Capital One Venture card even more attractive. As a reminder, new cardholders can earn 60,000 bonus miles after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening.
When you consider that you’ll earn 2 miles per dollar spent on the card, spending $3,000 to earn the full sign-up bonus will earn another 6,000 miles — meaning that new cardholders could take home 66,000 miles through this offer.
With a 1:1 transfer ratio for 15 partners, you can earn 66,000 points or miles on a wide array of airlines (and their respective alliances) and hotels.
Or, if you don’t want to research and maximize the transfer partners, you can use those miles at a fixed value to offset $660-worth of travel purchases on your account.
Over the past few years, Capital One has announced impressive improvements to the Capital One Rewards program. This latest addition of six more transfer partners that convert at 1:1 ratio means more value for existing and prospective Capital One cardholders. Redeeming miles is easier than ever before and with an already-existing simple earning structure, Capital One Rewards just got a lot more compelling.
This all is on top of news from earlier this year including four more transfer partners, the new 1:1 transfer tier and more details on upcoming airport lounges.
If you thought Capital One miles were good before, they’ve gained additional value with these updates.
Additional reporting by Stella Shon and Nick Ewen.
Featured photo by M101Studio / Shutterstock.com.
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