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Marketing Disclosure

Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card

Our Two Cents: Capital One Venture Credit Card Review

The credit card rewards space has two varieties. Group A is meant to appeal to people with hardcore loyalty to a particular airline or hotel chain. Group A loves being rewarded for loyalty with upgrades. Group A loves to brag about their loyalty. On the other hand, you have group B. Group B is made up of offers that provide more flexible travel reward “currency” that can be used toward any type of travel-related expense. The Venture card falls into the Group B category.

Since Capital One introduced this card you have probably seen the "What's in Your Wallet" commercials about a thousand times. For the most part, this marketing message and the dollars behind the campaign were necessary. The card wasn't that great and there needed to be some brute force selling to move the product. That's no longer the case.

As of February 2018 the card has some exciting new features. First, it comes with a new customer bonus of 50,000 points after you make $3,000 in purchases in the first 3 months of account opening. Points are worth .01 cents when redeeming towards travel, so you've got yourself $500. You're welcome, you math wizard you. Second, the card earns 10 points per dollar spend when you book hotels through Hotels.com/Venture. That's essentially 10% off. The best part about this is that it stacks with Hotels.com's 11th night free promotion. If there was a perk for people with commitment issues that love to travel this would be it.

If you like to try new things the best thing about this rewards structure is that you have the flexibility to book and pay for travel on your own without being required to use a particular airline or hotel website. The downside is you are tied to hotels.com to optimize your benefit. You may find that you actually save money booking directly through the hotel's website since that will provide benefits like free internet. If you value the add-ons like internet, complimentary updates, and comped breakfasts that are associated with booking direct, a hotel credit card is going to be more your speed. If you are more sensitive to price, Venture is the way to go.

Venture offers no foreign transaction fees, so feel free to take this card overseas. This is a a pretty common staple for all rewards cards, so we wouldn't make this a deciding factor. Other than that, look for an extended warranty program, travel accident insurance, and a 24/7 phone concierge service, as part of the Venture's offerings.

Capital One is unique in that they pull all 3 credit bureaus when looking at your credit score. This isn't the end of the world for most people. Since Capital One specializes in bad credit they gather all 3 reports to help make sure they are making a good decision on your credit profile. With that being said, Venture does require excellent credit. If you are in the fair/good category, we'd recommend starting with the Quicksilver cash back card.


Counting Your Pennies - How To Earn Cash Back with Venture

Double miles, all day long. With the Venture you earn 2 miles for each dollar spent with the card. There is no cap or miles ceiling on this – you get unlimited double miles. As long as your card remains open and in good standing, these miles don’t expire. There's no rotating category to remember. Easy peasy.

But what does two miles mean? Miles here is probably intentionally confusing (nice job Capital One marketing team). You can't actually buy any flights with these points. 2 Capital One miles does not equal two American airlines miles. Here's how the Venture rewards program works: Each mile you earn is worth $.01 towards a travel purchase. After you make a travel purchase using your card, use your points to pay off that purchase. Done. 

The annual fee on this card is $95, but it is waived for the first year. That means you'll pocket $645 in rewards the first year if you spend $12,000 on the card. Every year there after, you'll net $145 in rewards if you maintain the same $12,000 in spend and pay the $95 annual fee. For those of you that aren't keeping up, $12,000 in spend = $240 in annual rewards.


Who Should Get It?

If you are brand agnostic and like to travel - this is a pretty good card if you don't mind booking with Hotels.com. If you hate rotating categories and like easy - this is a good card for peace of mind. If you are new to the rewards game - this is a good card to get your feet wet. If you like hotels.com - this is a great card because, duh.


Who Shouldn't Get It?

Seasoned travelers with brand loyalty. We'd push you to get a travel specific card like the Sapphire Reserve. You'll enjoy the benefits of the card and make use of the priority lounges. Your travel self will thank you. 

If you spend less than $12,000 a year on your card, take a look at the Blispay and its straight 2% cash back without an annual fee.


Looking for 10x Points @ Hotels.com? 

  • $0 intro for first year; $95 after that
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles per dollar on every purchase, every day
  • Travel when you want with no blackout dates
  • Terms Apply
  • Apply Online