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The Capital One Venture cards deliver excellent value for cardholders. Both cards offer generous signup bonuses, provide a consistent return on everyday spending, and offer benefits that help justify paying the annual fee each year.
Right now, the Venture cards also feature matching signup bonuses, delivering 75,000 bonus miles to new account holders after they spend $4,000 in the first 90 days of holding the card.
While the cards share some similarities, there are key differences that will determine which card adds the most value to your wallet.
- 2 miles per dollar on all eligible purchases
- 5 miles per dollar on flights when booking via Capital One Travel
- 10 miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars when booking via Capital One Travel
In this post, we take an in-depth look at both cards to compare the key features, rewards, and annual fees. By the end, you'll understand the differences between the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card and Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card and be able to make an informed decision about which is better for your needs.
Where Do the Venture Cards Overlap?
Both Venture cards offer similar earning rates: 2x miles on all purchases, plus additional miles on select categories purchased through Captial One Travel. Neither card limits the number of miles you can earn. Both cards also share the ability to redeem miles at a fixed value for travel expenses or transfer miles to airline and hotel partners to redeem for award flights or stays.
When redeeming miles for a fixed value, Capital One allows you to redeem Venture Miles for past travel purchases — no matter where you made the purchase.
This policy is what makes Capital One different from the competition. Most card issuers require you to purchase through their travel portal. That means forfeiting elite benefits and earning rewards with hotels. Plus, you’re subject to the prices found through the bank's travel portal rather than booking the best available deal.
With Capital One, you can shop around for the best price and buy directly. Then, you have 90 days to redeem your rewards for a statement credit online. Capital One has made this incredibly easy. It takes just a few clicks to request your credit.
Both cards also allow you to transfer miles to 18 different airline and hotel partners, with most transferring at a 1:1 ratio. It's impressive that Capital One continues to make Venture Miles arguably the easiest to redeem via its fixed-value redemption option while also building an ultra-competitive transferrable rewards program.
- Earn 75,000 Miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening; worth $750 in travel if redeemed for a fixed-value, or potentially much more when transferred to airline partners
- 2 Miles on every purchase
- Fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✔® (up to $100)
- No foreign transaction fees
- $95 annual fee
- 5X miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
- 2X miles per dollar on all other purchases
To recap, both cards earn and redeem miles at similar rates and have the same sign-up bonus. That means the card that delivers the most value comes down to two factors:
- The annual fee you pay
- The benefits you can utilize
Key Differences Between the Capital One Venture X and Venture Cards
The annual fee is the first and most obvious difference for the Venture cards. The Capital One Venture sits right in the sweet spot for a mid-tier rewards card, charging an affordable $95 per year.
Meanwhile, the Capital One Venture X is the cheapest premium travel card on the market, charging an annual fee of $395 per year. The additional cost comes with much more comprehensive benefits. However, you need to ensure you will take advantage of those benefits year after year to justify holding the card over the long term.
Outside of a few core travel protection perks, benefits on the Capital One Venture are limited to a $100 TSA PreCheck or Global Entry credit, Hertz Five Star status, and two visits per year to Capital One or Plaza Premium lounges. Those are some solid perks for a card with just a $95 annual fee. Still, this is a card you keep in your wallet for the earning and redemption options, not the benefits.
The Capital One Venture X delivers an extensive suite of travel-focused benefits, including:
- $300 annual travel credit
- 10,000-mile anniversary bonus
- Hertz President's Circle status
- Unlimited access for the primary cardholder and up to 2 guests to Capital One branded lounges, plus Priority Pass and Plaza Premium Group lounges
- $100 TSA PreCheck or Global Entry credit
- Visa Infinite Luxury Hotel Collection
In addition to the standard travel protection perks offered on the Capital One Venture card, Capital One Venture X cardholders gain access to travel and emergency assistance services, trip cancellation and interruption insurance, and trip delay reimbursement on the travel front, alongside cell phone protection and return protection.
Should You Get the Capital One Venture X or the Capital One Venture?
If you’re looking for a quick answer, get the Capital One Venture X if you can afford the annual fee upfront. To be blunt, the current benefits that come with the Capital One Venture X are probably too good to last. Nearly every other “premium” rewards card has eventually increased its annual fee, trimmed benefits, or both.
The Capital One Venture X offers two benefits that easily cover the $395 annual fee.
- $300 Annual Travel Credit
- $100 worth of Venture miles after each anniversary — deposited as 10,000 miles.
If you use both, Capital One is essentially paying you $5 per year to keep the card. And both of these are incredibly simple to use. The travel credit applies only to purchases made through Capital One Travel. But there are plenty of easy ways to trigger this credit. The annual 10,000 Venture mile benefit is even more flexible. If you can’t use both of these benefits, you should probably reconsider getting a travel rewards card.
And now that you’ve broken even, the other benefits are all profit:
- Hertz President’s Circle status
- Capital One Lounges
- Priority Pass Lounges
- Plaza Premium Group Lounges
- $100 TSA PreCheck or Global Entry Credit
Am I Eligible for A Capital One Venture Card?
Capital One's application restrictions are relatively easy to navigate — unlike other card issuers we've covered on the blog.
The first rule is that you can only hold 2 Capital One branded credit cards at the same time. This includes Venture and Savor cards. However, Capital One co-branded cards and business cards like Spark business cards don't factor into this limitation.
Capital One also caps the number of cards you'll be approved for each year, limiting new accountholders to 1 new card every six months. If you've had either Venture card in the past, it's important to note that Capital One includes the following language on its application page for these cards:
“Existing or previous Accountholders may not be eligible for this one-time bonus.”
The Venture cards are top-tier travel rewards cards that hold up well in their respective categories. Overall, the Capital One Venture X card is a good choice for frequent travelers willing to pay a higher annual fee in exchange for more robust travel benefits.
If you just take advantage of the $300 annual travel credit, you are effectively dropping the annual fee to the same $95 you'll pay to hold the Capital One Venture X, but with a ton of additional perks that you can utilize when traveling. Add in the 10,000-mile anniversary bonus and you come out even further ahead with the Capital One Venture X.
If you are chasing a card that charges a lower annual fee straight out of the gate and still allows you to take advantage of great earning and redemption options, the Capital One Venture is one of the best mid-tier cards available across any rewards program and one that will provide value year after year.
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