Since Capital One has recently modified some of the terms around the Venture Rewards card, their flagship travel rewards offering, we felt it would be helpful for us at LendingTree Credit Card Reviews to put the card through its paces. As always, we summarize the pros and cons, and gather up all the details in one simple format in order to help you make as informed a decision as possible when shopping for new and better cards.
So without further ado, is Capital One's Venture Rewards the best travel card on the market?
Based on combining each of the factors we'll go over below, the short answer is a strong yes, with the caveat that you need to have good to excellent credit to qualify for the card.
Now on to the nitty gritty comparison. We evaluate our travel rewards cards on the following metrics:
- Total value of travel rewards earned per dollar spent on the card: The Venture Rewards came in at a leading 2X miles earned.
- Annual fees: nearly all the high-paying travel rewards cards have an annual fee, and the Venture Rewards is no exception. However, the fee is waived for the first year, and at $59 per year thereafter, it is the lowest annual fee we found among cards offering comparable rewards levels.
- Bonus to new cardholders: This is where the Venture Rewards starts to separate itself, offering a staggering 40,000 miles (a $400 value) to new cardholders (though note that you do need to spend $3,000 in the first 3 months in order to earn this bonus)
- Redemption flexibility: What good are travel rewards if they're restricted to the point where you can't use them? The Venture again comes in tops, allowing cardholders the ability to redeem rewards at any airline, any hotel, anytime. There are no blackout dates.
- Foreign transaction fees: We want to use our top travel rewards cards on... traveling, so foreign transaction fees sort of defeat the purpose. The Venture Rewards card charges no foreign transaction fees, so wheels up.
- Interest rate: The Venture Rewards comes in strong for those with excellent credit, with a floor rate of 13.49%. All the other top rewarding cards had floor rates of 15%+.
Based on coming in either at the top, or very near the top in every one of the categories by which we measure travel cards, the Capital One Venture Rewards comes in first overall by a pretty hefty margin. See more details below.
40,000 ($400) Bonus, 2X Travel Rewards, No Blackout Dates, Flexible Redemption, Annual Fee Waived First Year
Pros: The Venture Rewards card comes in tops among travel cards with its 2x rewards, large initial bonus, first year fee waived, lower floor APR, no foreign transaction fees and redemption flexibility.
Cons: Does charge an annual fee (although lower than others offering comparable rewards) and requires good to excellent credit.
The Verdict: Capital One offers the strongest overall travel card with it's Venture Rewards card.
Credit Required: Good to Excellent