Capital One Platinum vs. Capital One QuicksilverOne

Which Capital One card is the better credit-builder?

Capital One Platinum vs. Quicksilver One

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If you’ve been looking for a card to help you build credit, but you’re nervous about your ability to qualify, Capital One has some solid options. The Capital One® Platinum Credit Card and Capital One® QuicksilverOne® Cash Rewards Credit Card are two bare-bones, yet serviceable cards that provide a welcome mat for cards beginners and security for credit-builders. The main difference between the cards is that only the QuicksilverOne has a rewards program, and a minimal one at that. So how do these two compare?

Capital One Platinum vs. Capital One QuicksilverOne

  Capital One Platinum Card
Capital One Platinum
Chase Sapphire Preferred
Capital One QuicksilverOne
Rewards None
1.5% cash back on every purchase
Initial credit limit $300
Annual fee
$0 $39

How they’re similar 

Both require fair credit for approval. Since both the Platinum and the QuicksilverOne are designed to build credit, you don’t have to worry about having a high credit score to be approved for either one. Both require a fair credit history (a score above 580) to qualify. 

Initial credit limit. The Platinum and QuicksilverOne want to set you up for success in building your credit score. So they both set a spending limit of $300 right out of the gate. This allows you to spend within comfortable guardrails during your statement periods without your budget getting away from you.

How they’re different 

Rewards. With the QuicksilverOne, you not only have the opportunity to build credit, but you can also earn 1.5 percent cash back on every purchase you make. You can find higher rates with other cards, but it’s an added incentive, nonetheless. In fact, if you spend a sufficient amount on the QuicksilverOne card, you can earn enough cash back to outmatch the annual fee. For example, a cardholder who spends $300 on the card each month would earn $54 in cash back – $15 more than the card’s $39 annual fee. The Capital One Platinum card, on the other hand, doesn’t offer a rewards package for making purchases. 

Annual fee. The Capital One Platinum comes with no annual fee, which means you can spend without having to budget for an annual bill. The lack of an annual fee may be especially appealing if you're trying to build your credit on a tight budget.

Best for building credit with no annual fee: Capital One Platinum 

The Capital One Platinum card doesn’t come with a rewards package, but it does have plenty of features in place to help you build credit. One in particular is the CreditWise feature, which allows you to check your credit score and monitor your credit over time. The card also comes with a number of protections such as travel accident insurance, auto rental coverage, fraud protection, extended warranties, price protection, 24-hour roadside assistance and 24-hour travel assistance services. 

Having all of this with no annual fee is a much more inviting option than going the secured credit card route. You want a card that will help you build credit over time while allowing you to practice responsible cardholder habits. Once you’re able to bring your credit to good enough standing to be approved for another card, the Capital One Platinum will leave you in good shape.

Best for building credit while earning cash back: Capital One QuicksilverOne 

What the QuicksilverOne offers over the Platinum is the added incentive of earning cash back while building your credit. It also comes with protections such as security and account alerts, personalized due date, compatible with Apple Pay, no foreign transaction fees, travel accident insurance, roadside assistance, price protection, travel assistance, car rental insurance and extended warranty. It doesn’t come free, however. You’ll be paying a $39 annual fee, and the card doesn’t offer a sign-up bonus. But it could end up being a small price to pay for the added cash back benefit.  

Bottom line

Both of these options will help you build credit while practicing good spending habits. Choosing between the two comes down to the additional benefits that each one offers, and how you feel they can set you up for success down the line.   

See related: Capital One launches new CreditWise tools, Tips for getting that first credit card and building creditHow to build credit if you can't get a secured card or personal loan

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Updated: 12-15-2018