Capital One Spark 1.5X Miles Select: An easy way to earn flexible rewards for your business
The above-average flat rate for all general purchases without a spending cap makes this a great fit for small-business owners looking for a simple way to earn rewards.
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Capital One Spark 1.5X Miles Select for Business Overview
For small-business owners who prefer a business card with no annual fee, the Capital One Spark 1.5X Miles Select business card is a solid choice. Not only does the lack of annual fee make it more affordable, you earn unlimited 1.5X Capital One miles per every dollar spent — and 5x miles when you purchase your hotel stays and car rentals through the Capital One Travel portal. The simple travel rewards structure and zero-percent introductory APR for nine months (and 15.49 percent, 21.49 percent or 25.49 percent variable thereafter) round out the list of noteworthy benefits for this no-frills card.
What are the pros and cons?
- Sign-on bonus is not as strong compared to other offers in the market
- 5x bonus is only earned by using the Capital One travel portal
- No intro APR offer for balance transfers
A deeper look into the current card offer
- Rewards rate: 5X miles per dollar on hotels and car rentals booked through Capital One Travel, 1.5X miles per dollar on all other purchases
- Welcome offer: Earn a 20,000 miles sign-up bonus when you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months of account opening
- Annual fee: $0
- Purchase intro APR: 0 percent for first 9 months
- Balance transfer intro APR: N/A
- Regular APR: 15.49 percent, 21.49 percent or 25.49 percent, variable
Current welcome offer
New cardholders can earn an additional 20,000 bonus miles by spending at least $3,000 in the first three months of account opening. If you use your Capital One miles toward travel, it is currently worth about $200. This welcome offer is not as strong as other business card sign-up bonuses. For example, the Bank of America® Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards Mastercard® credit card offers a $300 statement credit if you make at least $3,000 in purchases within the first 90 days of account opening.
For business owners who use a credit card for business travel, the Capital One Spark 1.5X Miles Select makes it easy to both earn and redeem travel rewards.
How you earn
Cardholders earn a generous 5X miles per dollar spent when you book hotel and rental car travel through the Capital One travel portal. All other eligible purchases earn an unlimited 1.5X miles. These are solid rates, especially for a no-annual-fee card. Small-business owners who value simplicity will appreciate this card doesn’t come with a variety of bonus categories or spending caps that need tracking.
How to redeem
Redemption options are quite flexible since you have no required minimum to use or an expiration date on the miles earned. This is ideal for business owners who crave simplicity in travel rewards programs. Miles can be redeemed for statement credit or check, new travel purchases made through the Capital One Travel portal, previous purchases, or gift cards to popular merchants like Apple or Best Buy.
Another redemption option is to transfer to a Capital One Miles transfer partner, which includes Avianca LifeMiles, British Airways, and Etihad. Not all partners have the same redemption value, but most are 1:1.
How much are rewards worth?
Capital One Miles are worth 1 cent each when redeeming for travel purchases, but could be worth less when redeeming for items like gift cards or event tickets. If you want the flexibility to redeem rewards for non-travel options, a cash back card is usually your best choice since many let you redeem your rewards for statement credits and gift cards without dropping the value of your miles below 1 cent.
The right transfer partner could get you the best value. According to Bankrate’s latest points valuations, Capital One miles are worth an estimated 2 cents each on average when transferred to the right high-value transfer partner.
Other cardholder perks
The Capital One Spark 1.5X Miles Select card offers a few additional benefits worth noting.
No foreign transaction fees
If you plan to travel outside the United States, you can use the Capital One card without incurring any foreign transaction fees.
Free employee cards
Not only are the employee cards free for each employee, but you can also set spending limits and monitor all transactions while you continue to earn rewards.
Additional purchase protections
Purchases with your card mean you receive a free additional extended warranty and purchase protection with certain eligible items.
Rates and fees
Like most no-annual-fee business cards, the Spark Miles Select doesn’t come with an intro APR offer on balance transfers but doesn’t charge a balance transfer fee if you do decide to transfer over debt. It does have a zero-percent introductory APR offer for purchases for the first nine months of account ownership. After the nine-month promotional period, your creditworthiness will determine your new APR, which is a variable rate of 15.49 percent, 21.49 percent or 25.49 percent.
Business cards tend to have higher purchase APR ranges in general and the Capital One 1.5X Miles Select option falls within the typical range. The best way to avoid paying any interest charges is to pay your balance in full each month. When you add in the cost of the interest rates, in the end, it typically costs more than the points you earn, plus it makes it harder to pay off your debt.
Other rates you should be aware of include a penalty APR of 30.9 percent, which you could get stuck with if you make a late payment. This penalty rate will apply for a minimum of 12 billing cycles, which can make it harder to pay off debt. If you have a habit of making late payments, you may prefer a card a little more forgiving, such as the Bank of America® Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards Mastercard® credit card which does not charge a penalty APR.
How the Capital One Spark Miles Select for Business compares to other business cards
You may have different needs than what the Capital One Spark 1.5X Miles Select card has to offer. When selecting a business card, it’s helpful to compare offers side by side and to see what benefits are most useful to you.
Capital One Spark 1.5X Miles Select vs. Ink Business Cash® Credit Card
For business owners who spend more on everyday purchases rather than travel, the Ink Business Cash® Credit Card could be a strong alternative. Like the Capital One Spark 1.5X Miles Select, this card features a $0 annual fee. But instead of bonus rewards for hotels and rental cars, the Ink Business Cash earns high bonus rewards on business-centric categories, like office supply stores, internet, cable and phone services, as well as gas and dining purchases.
The cash back credit card also features a robust welcome offer, giving you a $750 cash back bonus if you spend $7,500 on purchases within the first three months. While the welcome offer is higher, you’ll need to spend an average of $2,500 per month for three months to earn it, compared to the $1,000 average per month to earn the 20,000 mile sign-up bonus offered by the Spark Miles Select card.
Capital One Spark 1.5X Miles Select vs. American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card
The no-annual-fee American Express Blue Business Cash™Card offers a higher flat rate of 2 percent on purchases (for the first $50,000 in a year, then 1 percent thereafter) and a slightly higher sign-up bonus worth a $250 statement credit if you spend $3,000 in the first three months. But the longer 12-month 0 percent intro APR on purchases (followed by a variable rate of 16.24 percent to 24.24 percent) may be a better fit for someone looking for more time to cover purchases for a promotional period without having to deal with interest charges. Plus, the Expanded Buying Power feature and enhanced travel and purchase protections could provide more value for small-business owners. One thing to note with this card is the 2.7 percent foreign transaction fee, which could be an expensive fee for anyone traveling abroad or making online purchases with merchants based outside the U.S.
Best cards to pair the Capital One Spark Miles Select for Business with
Pairing the Capital One Spark 1.5X Miles Select card with a co-branded airline credit card could be a fantastic way to beef up your business travel perks and benefits and make up for the Spark Select’s lack of high bonus rewards for flights. Some co-branded business cards offer perks designed to make your travel easier and save you money, such as the United Business Card. The United Business card offers features such as first checked bag free for you and a companion, two complimentary United Club lounge passes per year and a generous welcome offer of up to 150,000 bonus miles.
You could also pair the Spark Select card with a cash back business card that would earn rewards for your biggest business expenses outside of travel. For example, the Bank of America® Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards Mastercard® credit card offers 3 percent cash back on a category of your choice, including gas, office supplies, travel, TV/telecom and wireless, computer service or business consulting services. Plus the card also offers 2 percent on dining purchases and 1 percent cash back on all other purchases. There is a $50,000 purchase limit on combined 2 percent and 3 percent categories each calendar year, then unlimited 1 percent cash back, but it gives a business owner a serious opportunity to earn cash back on typical business expenses.
Bankrate’s Take: Is the Capital One Spark 1.5X Miles Select worth it?
If you are a small-business owner who needs a credit card for travel, then the simplicity of earning and redeeming rewards with the Capital One Spark 1.5X Miles Select makes it a business card worth serious consideration.
It is also a smart option for any business owner looking to control expenses since there is no annual fee, no foreign transaction fees and you enjoy a zero percent introductory APR for purchases for nine months. You will find other business cards with flashier perks and benefits, but those typically come with higher annual fees and complicated rewards programs.
The information about the Capital One Spark Miles Select for Business card has been collected independently by Bankrate.com. The card details have not been reviewed or approved by the card issuer.