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How to maximize your Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Although this card is best for frequent travelers, its rewards are flexible enough to provide benefits for those who aren't

Summary

Frequent travelers benefit the most from this card but those who want to stay home can still rack up rewards and use them toward Amazon.com purchases, Capital One Experiences, gift cards, statement credits or checks that go straight into your bank account.

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The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card has something for everyone.

Sure, it’s primarily for frequent travelers, but its rewards are flexible enough to provide a benefit even if you’d rather stay at home.

If you’re not booking flights or hotels, you can still redeem your rewards toward Amazon.com purchases or Capital One Experiences like VIP tickets and culinary events. If neither of those gets you excited, gift cards, statement credits or checks that go straight into your bank account are other options.

You can even use your miles toward PayPal purchases – you just click on that option when you log into your account at the time of purchase.

It might be a slight drawback that this card carries a $95 annual fee, but if you use it as your primary credit card, its benefits will easily outweigh that cost, especially if you’re able to utilize your Venture Rewards earning and redeeming potential to the fullest extent.

How to maximize rewards on the Capital One Venture Rewards Card

The first thing you need to do to maximize your rewards on the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is to fulfill the requirements of the sign-up bonus. You have two options, but to get the most out of your rewards, make sure you try to fulfill the requirements for both bonuses.

The first requires you to spend $20,000 in the first 12 months after account opening to earn 100,000 bonus miles (you’d have to spend approximately $1,667 per month for a year to earn those rewards).

The second option cuts your rewards total by half but might be more achievable for some: You can earn 50,000 bonus miles when you spend $3,000 in the first three months.

In each case, you need to be a new account holder. And note that you can only earn up to 100,000 bonus miles in your first year – you won’t get both independently.

In addition to going for both bonuses in the first year, you’d be wise to put every single purchase you make – large or small – on the credit card, including monthly bills like cable, phone and internet or any monthly subscriptions you may have.

Keep in mind that every purchase you make on the card earns you an unlimited 2 miles per dollar. If you can use the card and still pay the balance off every month, you should be able to rack up significant miles in no time. Another way to maximize your rewards on the Capital One Venture is to use it as soon as you start traveling because hotel stays will guarantee that you rack up those miles.

Best ways to redeem your rewards

The best value for redeeming miles on the Capital One Venture Rewards Card comes from travel. Whether you redeem a travel purchase through the Capital One Travel portal or you’re making an outside travel purchase, your miles basically equal 1 cent each, while when you opt for gift cards (0.8 cents each), statement credits (0.5 cent each) and checks (0.5 cent each), rewards equal only fractions of cents.

In addition, when you redeem for travel purchases, there is no minimum number of points you have to accumulate before you can redeem, no blackout dates for travel, no expiration dates for points and no limits on the number of miles you can use – plus, you can always redeem any flight or hotel purchase for a statement credit.

Plus, Capital One has more than 15 travel partners, and transferring your points can give you access to more places around the world than you might get to by flying on miles alone – and for a better deal.

For example, if you find a partner that offers a cheaper rate for where you want to go, like Aeroplan from Air Canada, or if you find a partner that doesn’t pass on fees and surcharges, it’s a great way to maximize the value of your miles.

All travel partners aren’t created equal, however. Some of the best ones to transfer your miles to include Aeroplan (Air Canada), Avianca and, thanks to its partnership with American Airlines, Etihad Airways. Do your own research on point value of each travel partner before deciding if transferring is right for you.

Don’t forget about maximizing your Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card by covering any travel purchase – and that definition of “travel purchase” is liberal; it includes Uber, taxis and public transit – you made in the last 90 days with points.

How to use the Capital One Venture Rewards Card’s other perks

There are other ways to maximize this card while traveling that make it a must in your wallet while you’re abroad.

First, there are no foreign transaction fees on any purchase outside the U.S. Also, when you decline a rental car’s collision damage waiver and use the secondary car rental insurance included with this card, you’ll be reimbursed for the value of the vehicle after you pay the car insurance deductible.

Meanwhile, you can get reimbursed for any covered loss while traveling when you use the card to pay for any fare. Plus, with a statement credit of up to $100 for Global Entry or TSA Precheck (your choice) every four years, you’ll be able to bypass airport security lines.

If you don’t want to travel, you can still maximize your Capital One Venture Rewards Card. It comes with strong shopping benefits such as Pay with PayPal, which enables you to make PayPal payments with your rewards.

And Capital One Shopping automatically hunts for coupon codes when you’re checking out online. Plus, you can use your miles to pay for Amazon.com purchases. Keep in mind that you’re also covered in case something goes wrong with the card’s extended warranty offer for one year on eligible purchases.

Finally, you’ll have access to exclusive events – both live and virtual – for Capital One cardholders, such as exclusive March Madness-themed seminars with former pro basketball players, one-of-a-kind concerts, live and streamed shows and private cocktail parties and benefit dinners hosted by celebrity chefs.

 

Bottom line

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card offers 2 miles for every dollar you spend on all purchases with no earning cap. And even though this card is truly best for those who spend $10,000 or more a year on travel, there are still plenty of perks that will make other cardholders feel like they still got quite a bang for the card’s $95 annual fee.

Editorial Disclaimer

The editorial content on this page is based solely on the objective assessment of our writers and is not driven by advertising dollars. It has not been provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. However, we may receive compensation when you click on links to products from our partners.

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