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New Perks for a Top Rewards Card

Miriam Cross, Associate Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance
The Capital One Venture Visa card gets even better with enhanced travel benefits.

The Capital One Venture Visa card won a nod in our latest roundup of rewards cards as one of the best that offer travel rebates and charge an annual fee. Its rewards are generous enough to justify $95 a year (waived the first year), but the Venture card is also simple: You get two miles per dollar spent on all purchases, and you can redeem miles at a value of a penny per point for statement credits on recent travel purchases.

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In December, the Venture card introduced a new perk: airline transfer partners. Travel credit cards that let you transfer points to partner loyalty programs or use your points to cut the cost of reserving travel directly or through a portal give you more flexibility. With most of its partners, Capital One Venture allows you to transfer miles at a rate of two Venture miles to 1.5 airline miles. Because the card earns two miles per dollar spent, "for every dollar you spend on the Capital One Venture card, you are earning 1.5 transferred miles," says Julian Mark Kheel, editorial director of ThePointsGuy.com.

Here's one catch: There are no U.S.-based airlines on Capital One's list of 14 airline partners. That means you would have to, say, dig into partner airlines' websites to figure out the best ways to use miles from foreign carriers to fly on U.S. airlines for domestic flights.

The card has other perks: It reimburses your application fee for either TSA PreCheck or Global Entry, and it returns 10 miles for every dollar spent on a hotel reservation at Hotels.com (through January 2020). You'll also earn 50,000 bonus miles after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first three months of opening your account.

Frequent travelers will probably get more value out of a premium travel rewards card, such as the Chase Sapphire Reserve, which offers three miles per dollar spent on travel and dining, as well as extra perks such as airport lounge access. Sporadic travelers who want a travel card without paying the annual fee can still rack up transferable miles--albeit at a lower rate--with the Capital One VentureOne card.

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Copyright 2019 The Kiplinger Washington Editors