Capital One offer two excellent travel focused Rewards cards – the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card and the Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card. Both offer great travel rewards for spending, but of course there are some important differences between them too. Which is best for you? In this article, we look at the differences in what each card offers, and the rewards you can earn.
Card basics – costs and interest rates
The basic details of each card – what is costs and purchase rates – are one of the main differences between them. Let’s see how that works:
- The Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card has an annual fee of $95, which is waived for the first year. It offers a variable APR of between 17.99% and 25.24%.
- The Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card has no annual fee. It also offers a slightly lower standard APR of between 14.24% and 24.24%, but has a promotion rate of 0% on purchases for the first 12 months.
So, from the outset it appears that the VentureOne card might be more appealing for those looking to make a large initial purchase, or to carry over a balance. But there are plenty more differences when it comes to points earning and rewards.
Sign up bonuses – more with the Capital One Venture Rewards Card
Both cards offer a good sign up bonus for new members initial spending. This is better though with the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card. It offers 50,000 bonus Venture miles (worth at least $500) with an initial spend of $3,000 within the first three months.
The Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card offers a 20,000 miles bonus, but for a much lower spend of $1,000 within the first three months. This is not a bad offer for a card with no annual fee.
Clearly the higher bonus with the Capital One Venture Rewards Card are tempting – even with the annual fee. Just make sure you will definitely reach the spending target, as if you miss it you will be left with nothing!
No foreign exchange fees with either card
Any good travel credit card should offer fee free use overseas, in our opinion. And both these Capital One cards do. You will pay no additional fee to use the cards for purchases overseas, or online in foreign currency. Many other cards charge a fee of around three per cent for such purchases, so the savings here can really add up when you travel.
Note though that this does not apply to cash withdrawals from ATMs – both card will charge a fee for this.
Ongoing rewards for spending
The Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card edges ahead here. Both cards offer a fixed rate of earning for all spending – no different rewards for different categories as is common with other cards. There is also no limit to the amount that can be earned.
- The Capital One Venture Rewards Card rewards two Venture miles for every dollar on all spending
- The Capital One VentureOne Card rewards 1.25 Venture miles for every dollar on all spending
In addition, both cards features fantastic bonus rewards for spending with hotels.com. With either card you will earn 10 Venture miles per dollar spent at hotels.com. This is a great offer for anyone who can make bookings this way. And you can also earn rewards separately with hotels.com own loyalty program.
Spending miles – same easy options for both cards
Once earned, spending Venture miles is the same for both cards. Venture Miles is one of the simplest financial reward schemes when it comes to redeeming – there are no complicated variable exchange rates for different options, and no need to spend miles only on options available through a corporate portal.
For full details of all the ways to spend miles, and how to get best value, see our guide to spending Capital One Venture Miles.
In summary, there are two main ways to spend miles:
- Use miles to cover any recent travel purchase (within the past 90 days) made with the card. Miles here have a fixed value of one cent per mile – so to cover a $100 purchase would use 10,000 miles. This includes not just airfares and hotels, but also taxis, Uber, car rental and many types of public transport.
- Transfer miles to one of 15 airline loyalty scheme partners. You can then use the miles within these programs to redeem for any of their flight reward options. This opens up a lot of possibilities – and plenty of ways to get better value than one cent per mile. See our guide for some great ideas on redemption possibilities.
Global Entry credit – only with the Venture Rewards card
One of the valuable extra benefits with the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card is a rebate for signing up to Global Entry or TSA PreCheck. Paying for either of these will the card will be offset with a credit up to $100, and this can be done once every four years.
Any regular traveler should be able to use this. These are great schemes that will help speed up the airport process. Assuming you do, this effectively cancels out one year of annual fee!
Travel protection and insurance
Extra cover when you travel is an often overlooked, but is a valuable benefit of these cards. Both cards have a very similar offering here. They both include extended warranty for card purchases, some level of travel protection cover and lost luggage cover up to $3,000. For more details see our guide to the Venture Rewards card.
As the offering is the same for both card it shouldn’t affect your choice. But it’s good to know that you have it whichever card you choose!
Final Thoughts – which card is best?
The big difference between the cards is of course the annual fee charged for the Venture Rewards card. Is this card worth the annual fee?
In our opinion it is – for the frequent traveler and/or slightly higher spender. Certainly anyone spending up to around $1,000 per month on the card will offset the annual fee easily with the higher earnings rate.
And the higher 50,000 mile sign up bonus is one of the best out there – certainly for this fee. Anyone spending this amount should have no problem triggering the bonus.
The frequent traveler benefits even more with the Venture Rewards Card. They can make use of the $100 Global Entry credit for sure. And are also more likely to have the flexibility to book more award tickets with airline partners, and enhance the value of the extra miles they will earn with this card.
Overall, the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card is our choice for anyone spending enough, and even more so for the frequent traveler. And don’t forget that the annual fee is waived for the first year – so you can try it out for nothing!
But the VentureOne card will be better for some people
However, the Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card remains an excellent card. It offer a good rate of earning and is simple to use, and of course with no fee! This card would be well suited to the lower spender, who would not necessarily benefit from the extra miles earning, and will find the lower target for the sign up bonus easier to reach.
Also, the slightly lower APR and initial 0% purchase offer make this a very good choice for anyone planning particular large initial purchases, or those who plan to carry a balance on the card (any rewards earned are quickly wiped out by interest payments in this case!).