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The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card introduced big changes today — and for would-be applicants considering the card for the long haul, it’s mostly bad news.
The popular general travel credit card made two major updates:
A bigger annual fee: The new fee is $95. Previously, the fee was $59, waived the first year. That's an increase of more than 60%.
A larger sign-up bonus: Capital One advertises the new sign-up bonus this way: "Earn 100,000 bonus miles when you spend $20,000 on purchases in the first 12 months from account opening, or still earn 50,000 miles if you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months." Previously, the card's sign-up bonus was worth $400.
Capital One says these changes will not affect existing cardholders. They will apply only to new accounts.
So, if you’re thinking about getting the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card, what does this mean for you?
You’ll get less long-term value. If you’re planning on holding this card long-term, the $100 increase in the sign-up bonus doesn’t help much. Within four years, you’ll have paid over $100 more in annual fees compared with what you’d have paid with the previous annual fee. Even with the card's robust rewards rate — 2 miles per dollar spent on all purchases — you'll have to spend $4,750 a year after the first year to break even on the annual fee. Before, you had to spend only $2,950.
The changes on the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card are good news for at least one group: Those looking to snag a big sign-up bonus without paying the first-year annual fee. But if you’re looking for a card you can use for several years, you might want to consider some other options.