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The Capital One Venture Rewards offers flexibility for any traveler

Danny Nelson, Reviewed
The Capital One Venture Rewards credit card lets you earn points based on where you want to go, not where you want to stay.

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Some travel credit cards reward your journey, netting you bonus miles dependent on picking a particular airline, rental car company, or hotel brand. But the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card is all about the destination.

We’ve chosen the Venture Rewards Card as one of the most valuable travel rewards cards you can find—especially for racking up points from your hotel stays. It’s the ideal hotel rewards card for those of us who balk at joining any one program, like Marriott Bonvoy or Radisson Rewards. Those programs, while rewarding for the dedicated traveler, will only honor stays within their brand, potentially leaving you with limited options if you want to explore a place that doesn’t have a lot of hotels available. For even more flexibility, Capital One’s “Purchase Eraser” makes using your miles for travel expenses dead simple, even when you decide to do so after-the-fact. With Capital One Venture Rewards, you can pick your vacation destination based on where you want to go, not where you want to stay.

Learn more about the Capital One Venture Rewards card

Everything you need to know about the Capital One® Venture® Rewards

Capital One Venture Rewards
  • Annual Fee: $0 for first year, $95 after
  • Introductory APR: No intro APR
  • Regular APR: 17.49%, 22.24% or 24.74%
  • Points: 2x miles, with 10x miles on hotels booked at hotels.com through Jan 2020
  • Balance Transfer Fee: None
  • Balance Transfer APR: 17.49%, 22.24% or 24.74%
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None
  • Sign-up bonus: 50,000 Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after account opening.

Who should get the Capital One Venture Rewards Card?

You should have an excellent credit score—say, mid-700s or above—to be approved for the Capital One Venture Rewards card. As long as you’ve taken care to establish a strong credit history, with a track record of on-time payments, applying for the Capital One Venture Rewards should be a cakewalk.

What points can you get with the Capital One Venture Rewards?

Double or nothing—that’s the Venture Rewards way. Capital One’s 2x miles policy means you’ll earn two Venture® Miles for every dollar you spend. By the gas pump, at the movie theater, in the supermarket or even on a train, your rewards for spending will always be twice as nice. And these miles don’t expire, either. As long as you keep your account open, your Venture miles will be there for you to use.

More: Learn more about the Capital One Venture Rewards card

Capital One makes it a breeze to redeem your Venture miles no matter how you earn them. You can transfer miles to partner airlines, including leading international carriers like Emirates and Singapore Air, and to domestic carriers like JetBlue, too. Cardholders have praised Capital One for simplifying the mile transfer process. Essentially, Capital One lets you decide when and where to transfer your miles based on your preferred itinerary. Sometimes you can find a better deal by directly moving your points to the partner airline; other times, you’ll get more value by booking the flight directly through Capital One’s travel portal.

One of the Venture Rewards Cards’ most lucrative points programs, however, has a potential end date. That’s the 10 points-per-dollar payout for hotel reservations, accessible by booking hotel stays through a special link on Capital One’s partner, Hotels.com. This mega mileage multiplier is set to wrap up in January 2020, meaning you only have a few months left to make the most of the program. We’re hopeful that Capital One and Hotels.com will renew the relationship; nonetheless, it’s a fantastic deal for this moment.

What perks can you get with the Capital One Venture Rewards?

Next time you fly: Keep your shoes on your feet, your laptop in your bag, your belt on your body. And your $100 application fee in your wallet. Capital One’s up to $100 voucher for TSA PreCheck and Global Entry applications makes joining America’s expedited airport security club a no-brainer.

The Venture Rewards card further eases common travel woes with a solid lineup of traveler-focused credit card perks. You’ll shoulder no foreign transaction fees, unlock valuable travelers’ insurance, get extended rental car damage coverage, and have access to a 24-7 travel help desk with the card. All of these are classic traveler credit card fare, but it's important to note that Capital One offers them too.

Our favorite feature, though, is Capital One’s “Purchase Eraser.” This nifty perk allows you to be reimbursed for any recent travel expenses with your hard-earned Venture miles. Booked a $500 hotel stay three weeks ago? Wipe that expense away with 50,000 miles. Paid for a $100 seat upgrade on your flight two months back? 10,000 miles makes it all disappear. You can even earn back part of the balance if you don’t have enough miles to cover the whole thing. The best part? It's super easy to use this perk—just press a few buttons in the Capital One app, and your purchase is covered.

Special things to know about the Capital One Venture Rewards:

It’s easy to earn miles quickly, especially with Venture Rewards’ hefty sign-up bonus of 50,000 miles. You’ll get this travel windfall the moment you spend 3,000 in your first 3 months. This shouldn’t be much of a problem for the prolific travelers among us. Once the veritable mileage mountain has made its way into your Venture Miles account, you can turn it into valuable travel vouchers and flights.

Capital One Venture Rewards card’s little brother, the Capital One® VentureOne® shares a lot of similar perks, though with no annual fee. Don’t forget that the Venture Rewards card only has one year fee-free; it’s $95 annually after that.

What drawbacks does the Capital One Venture Rewards have?

The Capital One Venture Rewards Card doesn’t have an introductory APR rate. Not many premium travel cards do, though, so you won’t be missing much. You can think of the first year’s waived annual fee as the introductory deal of sorts.

Additionally, some of the valuable perks associated with this card might not be around for much longer. Namely the 10x points on reservations booked through hotels.com. That deal is set to expire in January 2020, putting a timestamp on one of the most lucrative points payouts you can find anywhere.

Pay off that balance. On time, every time, all the time. You’ll be charged $39 for late payments if you don’t.

How does the Capital One Venture Rewards rate in our rankings?

We’ve already named the Capital One Venture Rewards as a top pick for hotel-goers. Read our previous writeup for more info on that front, and on other competing cards in the category.

Things to know about all credit cards:

  • APR rates and credit limits vary based on your individual credit. Credit limits and interest rates for each card are determined based on each cardholder's personal situation, so we did not take that information into account when evaluating these cards. One thing to remember is that if you pay your card off in full every month, you will not be charged interest.

  • Banks have final say on who they accept for a credit card. Card issuers decide who they will approve using criteria including, but not always limited to, an individual's credit score when evaluating each applicant.

So should you get the Capital One Venture Rewards Card?

If you want a miles payday every time you book a hotel stay, absolutely. The Capital One Venture Rewards cards’ 10x miles reward for bookings through hotels.com is highly generous, and a great deal while it lasts. This is the perfect card for hotel-goers hesitant to commit to any one hotel rewards program.

But the Venture Rewards card is a solid all-around travel card, too. With a hefty sign-up bonus; double-miles on all purchases, all the time; easily transferable miles to a handful of partner airlines; TSA preCheck vouchers; and Capital One’s signature purchase eraser, this card will take you far.

Learn more about the Capital One Venture Rewards card

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This article originally appeared on Reviewed.com: Capital One Venture Rewards review: Flexible points for any trip