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There’s no question that Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card is the most exciting new premium rewards card of the last couple of years. It has a huge up front bonus offer, strong points-earning, airport lounge access and a host of premium benefits.
Capital One miles now transfer 1:1 to:
- Star Alliance: Air Canada Aeroplan, Singapore Airlines Krisflyer, Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles, Avianca LifeMiles, TAP Air Portugal Miles&Go
- oneworld: British Airways Executive Club, Cathay Pacific Asia Miles, Finnair Plus, Qantas Frequent Flyer
- SkyTeam: Air France KLM Flying Blue, Aeromexico Club Premier
- Non-alliance: Emirates Skywards, Etihad Guest
- Hotels: Wyndham Rewards, Choice Privileges
Capital One miles also transfer at 2-to-1.5 into EVA Air Infinity MileageLands. And they transfer 2-to-1 into ALL Accor Live Limitless.
Here are the 19 things I’m loving about the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card:
- Initial bonus offer. 100,000 bonus miles after $10,000 spend on purchases in the first 6 months, and for a limited time also offering up to $200 in statement credits for vacation rentals like Airbnb and VRBO.
- Minimum of 2x on everything. The card earns 2 miles per dollar on every purchase, and 10 miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked at Capital One Travel as well as 5 miles per dollar on flights booked via Capital One Travel.
- Minimum 2% rebate towards travel. Capital One’s miles let you buy any flight without worrying about restricted award availability. This is most useful for people who use their rewards for domestic economy flights, and can be especially valuable over peak travel dates. You pick the flight you want and don’t inconvenience yourself based on what’s available at the saver level.
- Double threat. It’s a single card that works great as a travel rebate product, and great transferring to airline frequent flyer programs.
- Transfers to Air Canada Aeroplan They’re a great Star Alliance partner with most awards bookable on their website and great pricing for business class to Europe.
- Transfers to LifeMiles This is the only Star Alliance frequent flyer program with an award chart and no carrier-imposed surcharge. You can redeem United domestic flights starting at just 3500 miles.When you are flying a ‘mixed cabin’ itinerary (say, for instance, Los Angeles to Tokyo in first class and then connecting in business class to Beijing) the program will charge you proportionately for each flight segment.
A first class award between the US and North Asia is listed at 90,000 LifeMiles on the award chart. If you flew Los Angeles – Tokyo Haneda non-stop in first class it would cost you 90,000 LifeMiles. However if you added a connection in coach beyond Tokyo Haneda then the price of the award drops — add Tokyo – Beijing in economy and you can get the price down to just over 66,000 miles. That’s a generous perk no other program offers.
- Transfers to Air France KLM Flying Blue. Air France offers better award availability when you’re using Flying Blue miles than when you’re using partner miles. I often transfer to Flying Blue because I find they have business class award seats to Europe when other airlines don’t. What’s more flights to Europe – especially connections to Central and Eastern Europe – are reasonably priced. For instance flying between the U.S. and some European cities will price under 60,000 miles each way in business.
- Transfers to EVA Air Infinity MileageLands. EVA Air is a totally underappreciated mileage transfer partner.Flying business class between the US and Asia on EVA Air costs a reasonable 75,000 or 80,000 miles each way depending on the US gateway used. One real hidden gem is that they charge just 25,000 miles each way for business class intra-Asia awards. They also offer Star Alliance round-the-world awards.
US-Europe Star Alliance awards in business class is 65,000 miles each way, 85,000 miles in first class. US-Mideast Star Alliance awards in business class is 67,000 miles each way. And two stopovers permitted on a roundtrip award (one in each direction). Changes to date and flight up to three days in advance of travel are free while additional changes and also cancel/mileage redeposit cost $50.
While many people skip over the program because they add fuel surcharges to partner award tickets you don’t need to get excised about fuel surcharges for awards on EVA’s own flights e.g. $43 Los Angeles – Taipei and $56 Los Angeles – Taipei – Bangkok.
- Transfers to Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer. Since everyone transfers to Singapore it’s easy to build up their miles. And Singapore Airlines offers much better award availability to travel on Singapore’s own flights when you’re using Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer miles than if you’re trying to use miles from a partner frequent flyer program.
- Transfers to Emirates I’ve found upgrades to be easier to get with Emirates than on most other airlines, but you need their own Skywards miles to upgrade a paid ticket or to redeem for Emirates first class.
- Transfers to Etihad Guest. That lets you book award travel on Etihad (one of my favorites) but most importantly they have many great partner awards – for instance if you can find premium cabin international saver award space on American, they still charge you the mileage prices that American used to charge before their March 2016 devaluation.
- Access To Capital One’s Own Network Of Airport Lounges The Capital One Venture X card comes with unlimited access to Capital One airport lounges, including access for 2 accompanying guests. The Dallas – Fort Worth lounge is open and new lounges are in the pipeline for Denver and Washington Dulles. I was extremely impressed during my visit to the Dallas airport lounge. They even encourage you to take food and drink with you to go.
- Priority Pass With Unlimited Visits and Guests. The card also comes with Priority Pass Select – and in line with Capital One’s approach of ‘simplicity’ there aren’t any exclusions, such as American Express-provided Priority Pass cards excluding participating airport restaurants.
- Airport Lounge Access For No Annual Fee Additional Cardmembers The Capital One Venture X card lets you add up to 4 no annual fee authorized users and authorized users get lounge access, too (along with cell phone protection). Each authorized user gets a Priority Pass Select card, and also can access Capital One airport lounges and the ability to bring up to 2 guests.
- $300 Annual Travel Credit Up to $300 credit annually for bookings made at Capital One Travel (including airline tickets, so easy to use this)
- Bonus miles every year, not just your first year. 10,000 bonus miles every account anniversary (equal to $100 towards travel, or transfer to other loyalty programs)
- Hertz elite status While some United elites may be unhappy about losing Hertz status, this card comes with complimentary Hertz President’s Circle status which is their top public tier. This benefit is for primary cardholders, authorized users and account managers. Meanwhile Capital One offers additional benefits with National Car Rental, Avis and Silver.
- Purchase and travel protections There’s primary car rental protection; lost luggage reimbursement; trip delay + cancellation/interruption reimbursement; cell phone protection; and extended warranty protection.
- Earn more points referring friends to the card. Cardmembers can earn up to 100,000 miles per year for referring friends (25,000 miles per referral, up to 4 referrals per year).
The Capital One Venture X carries a $395 annual fee. That’s on the low end for premium travel cards and a great price. Consider that competitor products generally run $450 to $695, they clearly made a conscious decision to pack a lot of value into their card and charge less than American Express, Chase, or Citibank.
With an initial bonus offer worth well over $1500 in my view, exceeding $395 in value by a lot the first year should be easy even without statement credits but they’ve set up benefits that make the card pay for itself quite easily.