|Rewards Rating:||4 / 5|
|Annual Percentage Rate:||1.9|
In a Nutshell:
The new Capital One Savor card gets bragging rights for offering the most cash back on dining and entertainment purchases combined, but it’s not the best option for many cardholders due to its $95 annual fee.
Average Yearly Rewards Value ($1,325 monthly spend)
Other Notable Features: No foreign transaction fees, $0 fraud liability, extended warranty, complimentary concierge services, price protection, car rental insurance, roadside assistance, premium experiences in dining and entertainment, statement credits for Postmates Unlimited membership (through December 2019)
Capital One Savor Card Review: More Details
If the new Capital One Savor card gives you a feeling of Déjà vu, there’s good reason: This is the second time that Capital One has launched a card with the name Savor. The previous Savor card has been rebranded as “SavorOne,” while the new Savor card – which offers a higher earning rate on dining and entertainment purchases for a $95 annual fee (waived the first year) – is now rallying to take its place as the ultimate cash back card for restaurant goers.
While we think that the Savor card is a good cash back card, and possibly the best option for cardholders who spend a much larger amount than usual on dining and entertainment, we’re not sure the $95 fee makes sense for many cardholders. Read on to see why.
High cash back rate on dining and entertainment
The new Savor card is one of the most rewarding cards for frequent diners that we’ve seen. You get 4 percent cash back on dining and entertainment purchases (such as going to the movies and sporting events), 2 percent cash back at grocery stores and 1 percent cash back on all other purchases.
No other card in our records offer such a high cash back rate on both dining and entertainment. If you happen to spend a large amount on these two categories and are looking for a simple cash back card, the 4 percent category may be the deciding feature for you.
Large sign-up bonus
The Capital One Savor card is especially valuable in its first year. The card offers a $500 bonus to new cardholders who manage to spend $3,000 in first three months. Since the $95 annual fee is also waived in the first year, this is a great incentive for new cardholders to try the card to see if its 4 percent earn rate on dining and entertainment purchases is a good match for their spending patterns.
Redemption is extremely simple
If you are a fan of simplicity, the Capital One Savor card may be a good fit for you. Your cash back is unlimited, you don’t have to worry about rewards expiring for the life of the account, you can redeem any amount of cash back at any time, plus you can set your account to automatically redeem your cash back once it reaches a threshold of at least $25.
The option to set it and forget it is rare among cash back cards, and it’s one of the reasons we give Capital One the highest marks for flexibility and simplicity.
Capital One Savor card benefits
The Capital One Savor card is a great card for both getting out on the town and traveling abroad thanks to its bevy of purchase and travel benefits:
- No foreign transaction fees – For purchases outside the United Status with the card – both online and offline – you don’t have to pay a transaction fee.
Plus Mastercard provided benefits such as:
- 24-hour travel assistance – If your card is lost or stolen while you’re on a trip, you can request an emergency replacement card and a cash advance.
- Travel accident insurance – You can be covered in the case of covered accidental death or dismemberment during travel purchased with the Savor card.
- Car rental insurance – When you rent an eligible vehicle with the Savor card, you’re covered in the case of damage due to collision or theft.
- Extended warranty – You can extend the length of the warranty on eligible purchases.
Postmates Unlimited membership fee covered through 2019
As if the Savor card’s $500 sign-up bonus weren’t rich enough, foodies now have an additional incentive to sign up for the Savor card: From now through December 2019, when you use your Savor card to sign up for a Postmates Unlimited membership, you will receive a monthly statement credit to cover the $9.99 membership fee.
For fans of food, drink or grocery delivery services, this is a great value. Not only does the deal save you around $120 in membership fees, but Postmates membership itself saves you between $3.99 to $5.99 in fees for each delivery, which can add up to hundreds of dollars in savings if you use the service frequently enough.
Is the Capital One Savor card worth it?
While the Savor card is one of the most rewarding cash back cards for dining and entertainment purchases, we have some qualms about the annual fee, especially when we consider that Capital One offers a very similar card – the Capital One SavorOne card – for no annual fee.
The SavorOne card offers 3 percent cash back on dining and entertainment purchases, 2 percent at grocery stores, 1 percent cash back on other purchases and many of the same benefits as the Savor card, including no foreign transaction fee. Though its cash back rate isn’t quite as high as the Savor card, we find that it beats the Savor card for cardholders who don’t spend an especially large amount on dining and entertainment purchases.
For example, in the table below, we show the cash back earned for a cardholder who spends $15,900 total on their card each year, with $2,862 on dining and entertainment purchases and $3,657 at grocery stores:
|Capital One SavorOne card||Capital One Savor card|
|(3% x $2,862 on dining and entertainment) + (2% x $3,657 at grocery stores) + (1% x $9,381 on other purchases) = $253||(4% x $2,862 on dining and entertainment) + (2% x $3,657 at grocery stores) + (1% x $9,381 on other purchases) – $95 annual fee = $186|
In this scenario, the Capital One SavorOne card is the better option, providing $67 more value per year than the Savor card. You should do the math to see if the SavorOne card is the best option for your budget.
Check out these other great cards for dining out
Unfortunately, the Savor card has a couple worthy competitors in the dining space. One of the top cards for dining rewards is the Uber Visa card, which offers 4 points per dollar on dining purchases for no annual fee. The card is geared toward Uber riders – it automatically connects to your Uber account and allows you to instantly redeem points toward Uber rides, though you can also redeem points for statement credits at a value of 1 cent per point. If you are looking for the most rewards on your dining purchases without an annual fee, the Uber card could be a good alternative.
Also, if you are a frequent traveler seeking to get the best return on your restaurant purchases, you should also take a look at the Chase Sapphire Reserve card.
The Sapphire Reserve card only gives you 3 points per dollar on dining purchases, but offers a 50 percent bonus on those points when you redeem them for travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, essentially giving you 4.5 cents of travel per dollar that you spend at restaurants. The Reserve card also comes with a $450 fee, but – as we show in this article – for frequent diners and travelers, the card is easily worth the fee.
Why get the Capital One Savor card?
- You spend a very large amount on dining and entertainment.
- You want to earn a large sign-up bonus.
- You prefer a card that lets you earn simple cash back on dining out.
- You’re looking for a good card to bring on your next trip abroad.
How to use the Capital One Savor card:
- Spend at least $3,000 in the first 3 months to earn the sign-up bonus.
- Use this as your go-to card for dining and entertainment.
- Consider rotating in another cash back card for purchases that don’t qualify for a category bonus (e.g., the Citi Double Cash card).
- Save yourself some effort by setting your account to automatically redeem your cash back.
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