he Capital One Venture Rewards card has quite a bit going for it, not least that it earns 2 No Hassle Miles on every dollar you spend, from the first to the last. It also has no foreign transaction fee
, a must for any traveler's card. We consider it to be one of the best rewards and travel credit cards out there, in part because No Hassle Miles are so easy to redeem for their full value.
The Capital One Venture Rewards vs. the Capital One VentureOne:
The Capital One VentureOne is the Venture Rewards' no-fee counterpart, which earns 1.25 miles per $1 spent instead of 2. Many people get scared off by the Rewards' annual fee, but based on our calculations, it's almost always better to get the Rewards and pay the fee. If you're deciding whether it's worth it to pay the annual fee, see the table below for our summary of your average savings per year with the Venture Rewards vs. the VentureOne:
Is Capital One Venture Rewards better than Capital One Venture One?
As you can see, the Venture is always more profitable if you spend more than $7,867 per year, or hold the card for a short period of time. For those of you who are mathematically inclined, you need to make up the $59 annual fee (waived the first year) with a 0.75% higher rewards rate, so break even spending = $59 / 0.75% = $7,867.
If you spend <$8k a year:
Your tipping point, depending on how much you spend each year, is somewhere past 3 years. If you plan to hold the card for less time than that point, you should go with the Venture Rewards. Otherwise, the VentureOne may be a better long-term card. However, the more you spend, the better the Venture Rewards becomes when compared to the VentureOne.
Average savings per year = ([$100 bonus + 0.02 * spending * years held - $59*(years held - 1)] - [$100 + 0.0125 * spending * years held])/ years held
If you spend $8k+ a year:
It's all about the Venture Rewards. If you're spending more than $8k, the difference in rewards rates between the Venture and VentureOne cancel out the annual fee. Because the Venture Rewards beats the One on the strength of its rewards rate alone, no matter how long you hold the card, you should spring for the 2% rate.
The Capital One Venture Rewards vs. other 2% credit cards:
The Capital One Venture Rewards is one of the best 2% credit cards around. The other two - the Fidelity AmEx and Discover Escape - aren't accepted as widely as the CapOne Venture, which is a Visa card. The Fidelity AmEx, for all that it has no annual fee, has three major setbacks: it charges a foreign transaction fee, it faces the lower acceptance rates that many AmEx cards do, and it requires that you have a Fidelity account. Then there's the Discover Escape
. The Escape doesn't waive its annual fee in the first year, which is a pretty significant setback.
At the time of this writing, Capital One Venture Rewards is the only 2% rewards card on the Visa / MasterCard network
. That puts the card in a league of its own in terms of practicality, even though you might be giving up a bit in terms of possible rewards.
We'd also note that Discover acceptance is getting better, but it's still only accepted at about 90% of the merchants that accept Visa/MasterCard in the US. Internationally, acceptance of Discover is getting much better in Asia, but is very poor in other regions. American Express trails all 3 by a large margin, in terms of acceptance. That the CapOne Venture Rewards is a Visa means a great deal in terms of coverage both at home and abroad.