Capital One Improves Savor Card With 4% Cash Back on Dining and Entertainment

Aug 14, 2018

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Last October, in an effort to lure foodies who might be interested in earning extra credit card rewards on food purchases both while at home and out and about, Capital One added a new cash back card to its portfolio. The Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card offered unlimited 3% cash back on dining and 2% back at grocery stores, ideal for those who spend a significant portion of their budget on food purchases. The information for the Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

But now Capital One is introducing a new Savor card that not only improves on its rewards for dining, but adds a new bonus category to appeal to a wider audience, and it’s all accompanied by a substantially increased sign-up bonus.

Let’s start with a look at the bonus. Applicants for the new Capital One Savor card will get $300 in bonus cash back after spending $3,000 in purchases in the first three months after opening the account. That’s an excellent sign-up bonus for a cash-back card — in fact, it’s one of the very best across all personal cash-back cards, and would be a solid reason all on its own to consider getting the card.

However, Capital One has also provided customers two new reasons to keep the card beyond just the sign-up bonus. The new Savor Card has increased its cash-back bonus on dining purchases from 3% to 4%, and also added another 4% cash-back category for entertainment purchases. You’ll also still get 2% cash back on at grocery stores and 1% cash back on all other purchases. All cash-back categories are unlimited and uncapped.

Those 4% dining and entertainment categories are industry leading, with only the Uber Visa card matching the 4% on dining and no other card providing 4% cash back on entertainment purchases. There are also no minimums for redeeming cash back on the Savor card, and no foreign transaction fees.

This is all excellent news, but there’s one catch: The new Capital One Savor card now has a $95 annual fee, though it’s waived for the first year. The old Savor card had no annual fee, so you’re paying something extra for these extra features. But if you’re reluctant to get a card with an annual fee, even a reasonable one, there’s another option.

In addition to the new Savor card, Capital One is also introducing the Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card with no annual fee and 3% bonus cash back on dining and entertainment, 2% at grocery stores and 1% on everything else. Like the Capital One Savor, the SavorOne card has no foreign transaction fees and no minimum for redeeming cash back. It does come with a smaller bonus — $150 in cash back after $500 in purchases in the first three months.

The new entertainment category on both Savor and SavorOne cards includes the usual suspects: movies, plays, concert tickets, sporting events and so on. As far as dining, you’ll get bonus cash back for restaurants, fast food establishments and other categories such as food trucks, Starbucks, bakeries and more. You’ll also get access to premium experiences in dining and entertainment with both the Savor and SavorOne cards.

The significantly higher sign-up bonus and the waived annual fee in the first year makes the main Capital One Savor card almost certainly the better choice of the two to start. On an ongoing basis, you’ll have to do the math to determine if the Savor or the SavorOne is a better card for you, but with a $95 annual fee, you’ll need $9,500 in dining and entertainment expenses to break even entirely with cash back on the Savor over the SavorOne.

Just a reminder that Capital One has some significant application restrictions. You can only have two personal Capital One cards at any time, and you must wait six months between applications. So make sure to time any application for the Savor cards accordingly.

Finally, if you currently have the existing version of the Savor card with no annual fee, you’re in luck. You’ll automatically be upgraded to the new 4% dining and entertainment bonus categories, but you’ll be locked into paying no annual fee for the card. That means if you’ve already got a Savor card, you’ll likely want to hang onto it for a very long time.

Bottom Line

If you’re willing to put in the time and effort needed to maximize points and miles, then other credit cards can get you slightly better value than the Savor and SavorOne cards. But if you’re looking to keep things simple with easy to redeem cash back, it’s going to be hard to beat the Capital One Savor Cash Rewards card in its 4% bonus categories, and the sign-up bonus is top of the line for a personal cash-back card. Between these new Savor cards and Capital One’s improvements to its Venture cards earlier this year, the issuer has made major strides in improving its credit card products in 2018, and depending on your spending habits and needs, the Savor cards are definitely worthy of your consideration.

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