Key takeaways

  • The Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card offers lucrative cash back opportunities for the person who spends frequently on food and entertainment.
  • While this is a cash back card, if you also carry a Capital One miles-earning card, you can convert your Savor rewards to miles, which means this card could be an excellent addition to a travel rewards strategy.
  • If you can’t justify the annual fee, consider this card’s no-annual-fee cousin: the Capital One SavorOne Rewards Credit Card.

Capital One had foodies in mind when it designed the Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card — well, foodies and people who like to have a good time. If food or entertainment is involved, chances are this cash back credit card will reward you for your choice.

But life, unfortunately, isn’t all food and fun, so is the Capital One Savor worth it? While the annual fee may threaten to spoil your appetite, the potential for high cash back rewards in select categories makes this card worth considering.

When is the Savor Cash Rewards card worth it?

The Capital One Savor card is a cash back rewards card for those who like to eat out, entertain at home or enjoy a night on the town.

If you’re looking for a high-earning cash back card

There are plenty of simple, flat rate, no-annual-fee cash back rewards cards on the market. Savor is for the person who wants to up their cash back game. You know your budget well and understand you spend more on food and entertainment.

The Savor card earns 8 percent back on Capital One Entertainment purchases; 4 percent back on restaurant, entertainment and popular streaming services; 3 percent back at grocery stores (excluding Target and Walmart); and 1 percent back on your other purchases.

The unlimited cash back on dining, entertainment and grocery store purchases is appealing; plus, you won’t need to keep track of rotating categories, a promotional calendar or spending caps. It’s easy to track your cash back earnings on your monthly statement, within your online account or through the Capital One mobile app.

Let’s say you spend $1,500 per month on food, entertainment and streaming services. Here’s what you could earn back on your spending.

Spending category Monthly spend Cash back earned each month
Dining out — 4 percent $700 $28
Entertainment — 4 percent $250 $10
Grocery stores — 3 percent $400 $12
Streaming services — 4 percent $150 $6
Total $1,500 $56

In this example, you’ll more than offset the $95 annual fee in just two months. In a year’s time, you’ll earn $672 in cash back rewards.

If you already earn Capital One miles and are building out a rewards strategy

The rewards you earn with your Savor card can be redeemed for cash back, but they can also be converted into Capital One miles if you have a card like the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card in your wallet.

Use the Savor card in its high-earning categories — restaurants, entertainment, streaming and grocery stores — but pull out your Venture card for other purchases so you can earn 2 miles per dollar spent instead of just the 1 percent you earn on “other” purchases with Savor. It’s a powerful rewards-earning combo.

Capital One miles can be worth about 1.7 cents each when transferred to a high-value travel partner, according to Bankrate’s latest valuations. That means the Savor card’s welcome bonus of $300 cash back after spending $3,000 in the first three months could be worth even more than that if you convert the rewards to Capital One miles and use them with a travel partner.

When is Savor Cash Rewards not worth it?

Earning 4 percent back on dining and entertainment is a high rewards rate, but it isn’t for everyone.

If you don’t spend much on food or entertainment

Earning an uncapped 4 percent back in any rewards category is rare, but that doesn’t mean much if the categories just don’t match your spending habits. Remember, you’d need to earn enough rewards to offset the Savor card’s $95 annual fee. Just $200 a month spent at restaurants or $275 at grocery stores each month would do that, but if you aren’t going to spend that, it’s better to look for a no-annual-fee cash back card.

The Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card offers similar rewards to that of the Savor card and without an annual fee. The main difference is lower cash back at restaurants — 3 percent back — otherwise, like the Savor, it earns 8 percent back at Capital One Entertainment as well as 3 percent back at grocery stores (excluding Target and Walmart) and on select streaming services, and 1 percent on all non-category purchases.

If you need an intro 0 percent APR period

The Savor does not come with an intro APR offer, unlike the SavorOne, which offers 0 percent intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months, after which a 19.99 percent to 29.99 percent variable ongoing APR applies. There’s a 3 percent fee on the amounts transferred within the first 15 months or at a promotional APR that Capital One may offer you at any other time; no fee for amounts transferred at the transfer APR.

Should you get the Savor card?

Your decision comes down to your spending habits and whether you need an intro 0 percent APR period. Overall, if you dedicate a fair amount of spending to dining, entertainment, streaming and groceries, Savor has serious cash back rewards to offer.

If you spend just $2,400 a year in the high-earning categories, you’ll more than offset the annual fee, making the Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card an excellent addition to your wallet. That’s especially true if you’re building up a bank of Capital One miles through other miles-earning cards and want high earning potential in categories where you spend a lot of money.

On the other hand, SavorOne is almost identical, offering just 1 percent less on your restaurant purchases without an annual fee.

The bottom line

If your idea of a good time involves eating out, streaming a movie at home or a night out with friends and family, the Capital One Savor card is worth considering — even when taking the $95 annual fee into account. In particular, the higher cash back rate on dining may make it worth owning compared to the closely related SavorOne.

But unlike the SavorOne, the Savor card doesn’t come with a 0 percent intro offer. If you’re looking to transfer high-interest debt to save money on interest, compare the best balance transfer cards to find a fit for your budget and goals.

*Information about the Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card has been collected independently by Bankrate and has not been reviewed or approved by the issuer.