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By: Andy Bowen

Updated: August 14, 2018

In this article:

How we chose the best Capital One Credit Cards

We reviewed Capital One cards to find the top options across multiple categories. We evaluated each card on factors like our proprietary Bankrate score, rewards rate, perks, and fees to find the best that Capital One has to offer.

Editor’s Analysis: Best Capital One credit cards

Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card: Best for all-around travel rewards

Why you’ll love it

The Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card is ideal for earning rewards toward your next trip. With 2X miles on every purchase, every day, there’s no need to track your spending in particular categories. Miles are redeemable for a travel statement credit. And you can stretch your miles even further by booking through a discount travel site or during a sale. Eligible purchases like airfare and hotels are covered, no matter how you book. This, along with a hefty sign-up bonus of 50,000 miles after you spent $3,000 in your first three months of account opening, makes it an attractive option.

Card Details:

  • Best For: Travel rewards
  • Bankrate Score: 94 out of 100
  • Credit Needed: Excellent/Good

Consider this

The Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card comes with a $95 annual fee that kicks in after the first year. If you’re looking for an everyday travel card without a fee, this card’s little brother is a comparable option. The Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card has a lower rewards rate (1.25 miles per dollar spent on purchases) and a lesser signup bonus (20,000 miles with the VentureOne, as opposed to the Venture card’s 50,000 mile bonus), but it does come with the same redemption flexibility without the annual fee.

Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card: Best for dining, entertainment, and groceries

Why you’ll love it

Food lovers will want to check out the Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card. With an unlimited 4% back on dining and entertainment, 2% at grocery stores and 1% on everything else, this card delivers impressive returns for heavy spenders on dining and entertainment. If you regularly eat out more than 3 to 4 times week, and you don’t have this card, you could be missing out. Capital One has a sign-up bonus of $500 cash back when you spend $3,000 within the first 3 months of opening the card, which immediately boosts the value proposition of this card for most people. Despite the $95 annual fee (waived for the first year), if you’re a lover of restaurant cuisine, drive-thru hamburgers, or diner delights, then you will feel the value of this card.

Card Details:

  • Best for: Dining, entertainment, and groceries.
  • Bankrate score: 97/100
  • Rewards rate: 4% on dining and entertainment, 2% at the grocery store, 1% back on all other purchases
  • Welcome offer: Capital One offers $500 sign-up bonus when you spend $3,000 in the first three months of opening the card.

Consider this
The Capital One Savor Cash Rewards card is designed for people who spend heavily on dining and entertainment. If you already allocate a decent portion of your monthly budget to food then it’s worth doing the math on this card as its generous rewards could put a chunk of cash back in your pocket. To really maximize your returns you could couple this card with another high-rate cash back rewards card in a category you also spend heavily in, for instance, the Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express for 3% cash back on gas and 6% back groceries (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%).

Capital One® Quicksilver® Card: Best for simplicity

Why you’ll love it

The Capital One® Quicksilver® Card is perfect if you’re looking for simplicity. It has a flat 1.5 percent rewards rate, no annual fee, and a $150 bonus after spending $500 in the first three months. (This applies to any type of purchase.) And, when you earn rewards, you can redeem them for any amount. (Some cards have a minimum redemption requirement, usually somewhere around $25.)

The card also packs Visa Signature® Benefits like travel and emergency assistance, auto rental coverage, and fraud coverage.

Card Details:

  • Best For: Rewards card rookies
  • Bankrate Score: 93 out of 100
  • Credit Needed: Excellent/Good

Consider this

This card will get you off to a good cash rewards start with very little maintenance. But if you’re working to build or improve your credit, the comparable Capital One® QuicksilverOne® Cash Rewards Credit Card might be a better choice. It doesn’t have a signup bonus or intro APR, but it’s easier to qualify for and earns the same exact rate: 1.5 percent cash back on everything (that includes gas).

Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card: Best for earning unlimited miles

Why you’ll love it

For no-fuss points on everything you buy, the Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card is a sensible, affordable choice. Unlimited 1.25 miles per dollar offers decent earning potential, with plenty of flexibility at redemption. Since you can redeem miles for a travel statement credit, you can fly any airline and stay at any hotel, anytime, without taking blackout dates into account.

Card Details:

  • Best For: Earning unlimited miles
  • Bankrate Score: 80 out of 100
  • Credit Needed: Excellent/Good

Consider this

There’s no cap on your earnings here. But this card has a lower rewards rate (1.25 miles per dollar spent on purchases) and smaller sign-up bonus (from 50,000 miles to 20,000 miles) in comparison to the similar Capital One® Venture Card. However, they both hold the same redemption flexibility without the annual fee.

Maximizing points and miles on your rewards card

One of the key benefits of a great rewards card is being able to redeem points the way you want to. Your points don’t do you any good if you can’t use them. This applies across the board for different types of cards. Some airline cards and hotel credit cards are able to offer you a higher earning potential for purchases with their brand.

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all card that delivers superior points or miles on every conceivable spending category and has the most flexible point redemption options. Owning two or three cards is the right number to get the most points or miles and still keep the cards active (assuming you’re paying off the balances). You’ll be able to take advantage of the bonuses and ongoing rewards without major limitations.

Benefits of the Capital One rewards program

With the Capital One travel rewards program, you earn miles for all purchases and you get a sign-up bonus as well. A big advantage to the Capital One travel rewards program is that you aren’t tied down by loyalty to brands, and you aren’t limited to rewards for specific types of purchases. And there’s no transferring points.

You can use your miles for travel in the past 90 days, book new travel through Capital One, gift cards, a check or you can transfer them to another account. One plus about Capital One Venture cards: You always get 1:1 for travel redemption of miles. Redemption even includes spending on Airbnb and Uber.

Other benefits of having Capital One cards

From no foreign transaction fee to travel accident insurance, Capital One cards offer a plethora of benefits, including travel and retail; apps and digital services; and security. Here’s what this bank issuer offers:

Travel and retail

  • No foreign transaction fees – no Capital One card has a foreign transaction fee, a savings of 3%-5% per foreign transaction
  • 24-hour travel assistance – get an emergency replacement card and a cash advance
  • Auto rental collision damage waiver – an eligible vehicle is covered for damage due to theft or collision
  • Travel accident insurance – covered losses at no extra charge
  • Extended warranty – additional warranty at no extra charge

Apps and digital services

  • Mobile app – allows you to manage your account on the go
  • CreditWise – monitor your credit, even if you aren’t a Capital One customer
  • Eno – allows you to keep tabs on your account with texting, checking your balance, reviewing transactions and paying your bill

Security

  • Security and account alerts – get alerts by phone, email or text
  • Fraud coverage – $0 fraud liability

Recap: Bankrate’s top Capital One credit cards of 2018

  • Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card: Best for all-around travel rewards
  • Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card: Best for Dining and Entertainment
  • Capital One® Quicksilver® Card: Best for simplicity
  • Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card: Best for earning unlimited miles

* See the online application for details about terms and conditions for these offers. Every reasonable effort has been made to maintain accurate information. However all credit card information is presented without warranty. After you click on the offer you desire you will be directed to the credit card issuer's web site where you can review the terms and conditions for your selected offer.