Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card review: A low-cost travel card with a few good perks

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Snapshot

4.2

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Bottom line

The VentureOne Rewards card has just enough features to make it worthwhile for occasional travelers looking for a no-annual-fee travel card. But if you want bigger rewards, more perks and better long-term value, upgrading to the Venture Rewards card makes a lot more sense.

Capital One Image
Apply now

on Capital One's secure site

Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card

Rewards rate

1.25X–5X

Annual fee

$0

Intro offer

20,000 miles

Regular APR

17.99% - 27.99% (Variable)

Recommended Credit Score

Good to Excellent  (670 - 850)

Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card Overview

If you’re an occasional traveler looking for a low-maintenance, low-cost travel rewards card, the Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card may be the right fit for you.

This no-annual-fee card earns an unlimited flat rate of 1.25 miles on all of your purchases (plus 5 miles for hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel). There’s also a generous sign-up bonus to help boost your first-year earnings. And if you’re looking for a chance to make interest-free payments for a limited time, there’s an intro APR on purchases and balance transfers.

The card also comes with a lineup of Capital One benefits, which include purchase and travel protections to help you save time and money. For travelers on a budget, the impressive list of perks add plenty of everyday value, which could help compensate for the low rewards rate.

What are the advantages and disadvantages?

Pros

  • Cardholders have fewer fees to worry about: No annual fee and no foreign transaction fees
  • Flexible redemption options offer more chances to redeem your miles the way you want and for the best value
  • Good welcome bonus with a low spending requirement compared to other rewards cards
  • Intro purchase and balance transfer APR gives you time to save money by making interest-free payments on large purchases or past debt
  • Comprehensive travel and purchase protections include travel accident insurance, emergency card replacement and extended warranty

Cons

  • This card has a low rewards rate for its category, as other no-annual-fee travel rewards cards may offer up to 2X miles on all eligible purchases
  • The higher APR range could make it harder to pay off your debt if you don’t pay your balance in full each month

A deeper look into the current card offer

Quick highlights

  • Rewards rate: 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel; 1.25X miles on all purchases
  • Welcome offer: 20,000 bonus miles if you spend $500 within the first three months
  • Annual fee: $0
  • Purchase intro APR: 0 percent for the first 15 months
  • Balance transfer intro APR: 0 percent for the first 15 months (3% fee on the amounts transferred within the first 15 months)
  • Regular APR: 17.99 percent to 27.99 percent variable

Current welcome offer

When you sign up for the Capital One VentureOne card, you can earn a 20,000-mile bonus if you spend $500 within the first three months of opening your account. You would ordinarily need to spend $16,000 to earn 20,000 miles with the card, so this is a great way to jump-start your miles collection.

This bonus is worth $200 toward travel booked through Capital One, which is a common deal among other no-annual-fee cards considering the low spending requirement.

Though par for the course, this welcome bonus won’t be ideal for heavy spenders who want more value out of their card spending. While you shouldn’t expect a much higher welcome bonus on a card with no annual fee, you can raise the potential of earning more by opting for a card like the Discover it® Miles, which offers to match your miles earned in the first year. You’ll need to spend at least $13,400 to earn 20,100 miles worth roughly $200 in rewards, but Discover will match that full amount, putting your rewards for the first year around $400. That same spending point with the VentureOne (if spent primarily in the card’s 1.25X category) will reward you with about $370 accounting for the $200 welcome offer and rewards from spending.

Rewards rate

The VentureOne Rewards card offers flat-rate rewards in the form of Capital One miles — at a rate of 1.25 miles for every purchase and a boosted 5 miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked through the issuer’s travel portal. This is a nice, low-hassle travel rewards option for people looking for a simple way to earn rewards without having to keep track of different bonus categories and the various miles they earn. Plus, your miles won’t expire for the life of your account and Capital One doesn’t impose blackout dates.

Earning rewards

Cardholders can earn 1.25 miles for every dollar you spend, regardless of where you shop, with no limit on how many miles you can earn. You can also earn a whopping 5 miles for every dollar you spend when you book hotels and rental cars using the Capital One travel portal. This can make it easier to earn more miles faster when booking trips.

The flat rate of 1.25 miles per dollar is low compared to other no-annual-fee travel cards. Top options like the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card and the Discover it® Miles both come with an unlimited 1.5 miles per dollar on all eligible purchases. However, each card lacks a bonus category, which limits your earning potential in categories you spend highly in. On the other hand, a flat rate rewards card can be great for those who spend highly in categories not typically included in the higher rates on tiered rewards cards.

Redeeming rewards

You can book hotels, flights and rental cars using your Capital One miles by logging into capitalone.com and visiting the reward center. You can also use your card to book travel reservations through another service or website and then redeem your miles for a statement credit to cover a wide range of travel purchases that you’ve made over the past 90 days. Only purchases that fall under the travel merchant code will qualify, but, generally, it includes airlines, hotels, rental cars, cruises, limo services, timeshares and more.

You can also transfer your miles to more than 15 external travel loyalty programs that partner with Capital One, including the Wyndham Rewards and Accord Live Limitless hotel reward programs.

Not all of Capital One’s transfer partners carry the same redemption value, but British Airways may be the most valuable, thanks to its versatility. British Airways happens to be a transfer partner Capital One has in common with American Express and Chase, and it’s also ranked third globally for most country markets visited (82). Together, these factors could lead to interesting card combinations and a convenient level of reward flexibility for frequent British Airways travelers.

If you don’t want to redeem your miles for travel, you can also cash them out in the form of a statement credit, check, gift cards, Amazon.com or PayPal purchases and more.

How much are miles worth?

Miles are worth 1 cent each when you book for travel through Capital One, but your mileage may vary depending on which option you choose. According to The Points Guy, Capital One Miles are worth about 1.85 cents per mile, so your best value could come from transferring your rewards to another travel partner.

Make sure to check the conversion rate before transferring, since a few partners still have a transfer ratio below 1:1. Luckily, starting with Capital One’s April 20, 2021 update, the issuer has upgraded most of its transfer partners to the 1:1 value tier over time — except EVA Air (2:1.5) and Accor Live Limitless (2:1), as of Jan. 25, 2022.

Unfortunately, redeeming for non-travel options will water down your miles. Gift cards generally have a 1:1 redemption, but converting your miles to cash back reduces the value of your miles to almost 0.5 cents each. Similarly, putting your miles toward Amazon.com or PayPal purchases means each mile will only be worth 0.8 cents apiece.

Benefits

When it comes to benefits, the Capital One VentureOne carries the travel card basics — which isn’t bad for no annual fee. Capital One cards don’t typically carry the strongest portfolio of travel perks outside of their network processing perks. Just keep in mind that if you want a streamlined card, the extra features will also be slimmer.

Travel and shopping services

As a card designed with travel in mind, you will get 24-hour travel assistance services, which can help you get cash if your card is lost or stolen. Additionally, you receive auto rental insurance when you rent a car with your card and fraud coverage. Other protections you may receive for paying with your card include extended warranty coverage, fraud coverage and travel and emergency assistance.

Capital One also includes special entry rates to the issuer’s inaugural airport lounges with your VentureOne card. Few credit card issuers have their own dedicated airport lounges — Amex’s luxurious Centurion Lounges being the most notable — and Capital One is planning to stock its lounges with a collection of convenient amenities. Capital One Lounges plan to offer regionally curated grab-and-go food stations, shower suites, bartender lounge dining, relaxation rooms, exercise rooms and more.

Entertainment

If you enjoy concerts, music festivals, sporting events or culinary experiences, Capital One Access can help you learn about upcoming events, book presale tickets and purchase all-access VIP passes.

Security features

You can keep close tabs on this card with real-time security alerts, virtual card numbers to keep your actual credit card number hidden, credit report alerts through CreditWise and a card lock feature found in the Capital One mobile app. Considering that CreditWise is one of the few deep web credit monitoring services offered directly by issuers, it’s an outstanding level of coverage for no extra charge.

Rates and Fees

When it comes to rates and fees, the VentureOne stands up pretty well in its category. There is no annual fee, no foreign transaction fees and a 0 percent intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months after opening your account (then 17.99 percent to 27.99 percent variable; 3 percent fee on the amounts transferred within the first 15 months).

If you tend to carry a balance each month, you could end up paying more in interest charges than you earn in rewards. You could also fall into credit card debt. To help avoid that, you may be better off with a low-interest credit card.

Cash advances will come with a $10 or 3 percent fee, whichever is greater, and a 27.99 percent variable APR, so it’s best to pay them off quickly. Late payments will cost you up to $40 per occurrence, which is pretty standard.

How the Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card compares to other travel rewards cards

The VentureOne is a solid option for people who don’t travel often, but it doesn’t offer the best flat rate on purchases. And like most travel cards that don’t charge an annual fee, it is light on the additional benefits and perks. Here’s a look at two options for people who want to earn a higher flat rate for the same no annual fee or are ready to upgrade to a card with more features.

Capital One Image

Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card

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4.2
Apply now

on Capital One's secure site

Annual fee

$0

Intro offer

20,000 miles

Rewards rate

1.25X–5X

Recommended credit

Good to Excellent(670 - 850)
Discover Image

Discover it® Miles

Annual fee

$0

Intro offer

Discover Match®

Rewards rate

1.5X

Recommended credit

Good to Excellent(670 - 850)
Capital One Image

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Annual fee

$95

Intro offer

75,000 miles

Rewards rate

2X–5X

Recommended credit

Good to Excellent(670 - 850)

Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card vs. Discover it® Miles

The Discover it Miles card is very similar to the VentureOne with no annual fee, no foreign transaction fees and a 0 percent intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months after account opening (then 14.24 percent to 25.24 percent variable APR).

On the downside, the Discover it Miles doesn’t have a high-earning bonus category to help you earn miles faster. You’ll also have to wait for your welcome bonus as Discover matches all the miles you earn at the end of your first year.

But if those disadvantages aren’t a problem for you, Discover it Miles does have a few key advantages over the VentureOne. This includes a lower APR range and a higher flat rewards rate of 1.5X miles. Plus, Discover it Miles can be converted to cash back at a 1:1 rate to pay your bill, including your minimum payment, which is rare for travel mile rewards.

Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card vs. Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is an upgrade from the VentureOne Rewards card. You’ll have to pay a modest annual fee of $95, and you won’t see an intro APR offer. But in return, you’ll get a better rewards rate of 2X miles per dollar on all purchases plus 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel.

When looking at the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card versus the VentureOne, the Venture card also comes with better first-year value thanks in no small part to a bigger sign-up bonus: 75,000 miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within three months from account opening. That’s equal to $750 in travel compared to the VentureOne’s welcome offer, valued at $200.

You also get a credit of up to $100 for Global Entry or TSA Precheck membership. And since that credit is applicable every four years, it increases the Venture card’s long-term value. There’s also complimentary Hertz elite status, which offers a wider selection of cars and lets you skip the rental counter.

For many travelers, the higher rewards rate and sign-up bonus, as well as the convenient money-saving features found with the Venture card will offset the annual fee and provide greater value than the VentureOne.

Best cards to pair with Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card

A credit card with bonus categories that reward your personalized spending habits with higher rates would make a great partner for your VentureOne travel card. That way, you can earn higher rewards for purchases you make on a regular basis, and then use your VentureOne card for all of your other eligible purchases.

If you’re loyal to Capital One and spend a lot on food and entertainment, the Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card can rake in unlimited 3 percent cash back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and at grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart and Target), plus 1 percent on all other purchases.

If you want to earn rewards for your everyday essentials, the high-earning rewards categories that come with Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express pair up nicely with the VentureOne. The Blue Cash Preferred earns an impressive 6 percent cash back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year, then 1 percent) and select U.S. streaming services. You’ll also get 3 percent back on transit and U.S. gas station purchases, followed by 1 percent back on all other eligible purchases.

Bankrate’s Take: Is the Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card worth it?

The Capital One VentureOne Rewards credit card may be the right fit for you if you are looking for a low-cost card to help you rack up a modest amount of miles. With no annual fee to pay, you don’t have to invest anything to start earning 1.25X miles on every dollar you spend, and you can get a sizable welcome bonus too. But if you want to spend more to earn more, and if you have good credit, a higher-tier Capital One card or another one of the top travel rewards cards can potentially offer you a better value.