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Capital One’s travel rewards program is pretty easy to navigate, compared to other credit card loyalty programs. With Capital One Miles, you earn the same miles for every purchase (minus signup bonuses and a few special offers). This means you don’t have to think about which credit card gives you the best rewards for which categories of spending.
Capital One only offers four credit cards that earn miles, which makes the whole process even easier. If you want to maximize your Capital One Miles, just use one of those cards for everything you buy.
What is Capital One Miles?
Capital One offers two credit card reward programs: cash back and Capital One Miles.
Cash back credit cards, such as the Capital One® Quicksilver® Card, offer cash back on purchases. Capital One Miles credit cards, such as the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card, offer miles.
You can use your Capital One Miles to book travel through Capital One Rewards. However, you don’t have to use your Capital One Miles just for travel bookings. You can also turn your miles into statement credits, gift cards, and more.
Capital One Miles are designed to be flexible and offer multiple redemption options, but not every option is equal. You’ll get the best value per mile if you redeem them for travel purchases, whether you book through Capital One or use Capital One’s Purchase Eraser to “erase” the cost of travel booked through another retailer.
Which credit cards offer Capital One Miles?
There are only four cards that earn Capital One miles: two personal cards and two business cards. Here’s a quick overview of each card and its rewards:
|Rewards earned||New cardmember offer||APR||Annual fee|
|Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card||1.25 miles per dollar on every purchase, plus 10x miles on purchases through hotels.com/venture||20,000 bonus miles after making $1,000 in purchases in the first three months||0% intro APR for 12 months on purchases, then 13.74%–23.74% variable||$0|
|Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card||2 miles per dollar on every purchase, plus 10x miles on purchases through hotels.com/venture||50,000 bonus miles after making $3,000 in purchases in the first three months||14.74%–24.74% variable||$0 for the first year, then $95|
|Capital One® Spark® Miles Select for Business||1.5 miles per dollar on every purchase||20,000 bonus miles after making $3,000 in purchases in the first three months||0% intro APR for 9 months on purchases, then 14.74%–22.74% variable||$0|
|Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business||2 miles per dollar on every purchase||50,000 bonus miles after making $4,500 in purchases in the first three months||18.74% variable||$0 for the first year, then $95|
Unlike other credit card reward programs, such as Chase Ultimate Rewards, you cannot turn Capital One cash back rewards into Capital One Miles. If you want to earn Capital One Miles, you need a Capital One Miles card.
How can you earn Capital One Miles?
Capital One Miles are designed to be easy to earn. Each card offers a flat miles rate per purchase — the Capital One® Venture® Rewards card, for example, gets you 2 miles per dollar on every purchase. There is no limit to the number of miles you can earn, and unlike other rewards programs, your miles-per-dollar won’t drop after you hit a certain spending threshold.
There are a few ways to earn additional Capital One Miles. Both the Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards and the Capital One® Venture® Rewards cards offer 10x miles per dollar for purchases made at Hotels.com, if you use the URL hotels.com/venture.
All four Capital One Miles cards offer miles bonuses if you spend a certain amount of money during the first three months of card ownership.
How do you redeem Capital One Miles?
You’ll get the best value for your miles if you redeem them for travel. If you’d like to book travel through Capital One, you can visit Capital One Rewards to browse and purchase flights, hotels, and more. When you use miles to book travel through Capital One Rewards, each mile is worth one cent.
You can also use Capital One’s Purchase Eraser to “erase” travel purchases from your credit cards statement. With Purchase Eraser, each mile is worth 1 cent, so 50,000 miles would erase $500 in travel purchases. You can only erase travel purchases made in the last 90 days, so don’t procrastinate!
You can also redeem Capital One Miles for gift cards, charitable donations, VIP experiences, online purchases, and more. Your mile-per-cent redemption will vary by reward, so make sure you’re getting enough value for your miles.
The one reward you want to avoid? Cash back. When you redeem your miles for cash back, the mile value drops by 50 percent. This means that 50,000 miles only gets you $250 cash back. It’s much better to use your miles for travel — after all, that’s why you got a travel rewards card!
How do you transfer Capital One Miles?
Capital One lets you transfer your Capital One Miles to another cardholder’s account — so you can give miles to a spouse, a family member, or a friend. The cardholder needs to have a valid Capital One Miles card in good standing to accept your miles.
To transfer your miles, visit Capital One Rewards and look for the transfer option. Miles transfer 1:1, so you won’t lose any miles in the transfer process.
What else do you need to know about Capital One Miles?
Capital One likes to describe its rewards programs as “no hassle,” and that’s pretty much the case. With Capital One Miles, you don’t have to ask yourself which credit card rewards restaurant purchases and which one rewards gas purchases. All of the cards get you a flat miles rate on every purchase, which means you can use your Capital One card for everything without worrying that you’re leaving miles on the table.
Even the fact that only four credit cards offer Capital One Miles is less of a hassle — you don’t have to decide which of the numerous available credit cards is best for you, and you don’t have to apply for multiple credit cards within the same rewards program to maximize your rewards.
If you’re looking for an easy way to earn travel rewards, Capital One Miles might be the right choice.
Author: Nicole Dieker | Last Updated: August 17, 2018
Author Spotlight: Nicole Dieker is the editor of The Billfold and has five years of experience in personal finance coverage. You can find Nicole on Twitter @HelloTheFuture.
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