Capital One Venture Rewards Program Review: The Best Ways to Use Your Miles

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Capital One Venture Rewards are ideal for people who are NOT loyal to a particular airline or hotel and don’t want to spend time sifting through award inventory or waiting for award seats to open up.

People who want to get the flight, hotel or car they want for whatever price they’re comfortable with—and whatever dates they want—can really benefit from the extreme flexibility that Capital One’s No Hassle Venture Rewards program allows.

Flexible Means Valuable

There are no blackout dates and no restrictions with the Venture Rewards program. That’s increasingly important because it’s getting harder and harder to find good redemptions through frequent flyer programs. Airlines seem to be removing award seat availability every day, particularly for cheap economy seats.

That’s why I now recommend the Venture card to any traveler, whether they’re an experienced hacker or an occasional vacationer. The points and miles game isn’t what it used to be.

What does it mean, exactly, to say that there are no restriction or blackout dates? It’s simple. Just book any travel from anywhere and redeem miles to cover the cost.

Do you like to use Expedia for flights and Kayak for rental cars? No problem. Did you find a great deal on a Spirit Airlines flight? Great, you can redeem miles for that, too. Whatever you’re planning, just buy the travel and redeem your miles.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Cards

The cards that feed into this program are great earners and easy to use. The Venture Rewards card, which is the better of the two, offers a 50,000-mile sign-up bonus worth $500, 2x miles for all purchases and a special 10x miles bonus for hotels booked through Hotels.com.

It even comes with a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck something that usually only comes with premium cards.

Venture® Rewards Credit Card

INTRO APR on Purchases
N/A
INTRO apr on Balance Transfer
N/A
Regular APR
14.74% to 24.74% Variable±
Annual Fee
$0 intro for first year; $95 after that
Rewards Program
Venture® Rewards
Bonuses & Rewards
  • 10x Miles at hotels.com/venture
  • 2x Miles on every purchase, every day
  • 50,000miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $500 in travel
  • Receive up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee
  • + No cap to the amount of rewards you can earn
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Hide Details

If you’d rather avoid the $95 annual fee (waived the first year) for the Venture card, the VentureOne is a solid, no-fee entry into the program. It comes with a sign-up bonus worth $200 and earns 1.25 miles per dollar spent.

VentureOne® from Capital One®

INTRO APR on Purchases
0% introductory APR for the first 12 months that your account is open
INTRO apr on Balance Transfer
N/A
Regular APR
13.74% to 23.74% Variable±
Annual Fee
$0
Rewards Program
Venture® Rewards
Bonuses & Rewards
  • 10x Miles at hotels.com/venture
  • 1.25x Miles on every purchase, every day
  • 20,000 miles once you spend $1,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $200 in travel
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee
  • + No cap to the amount of rewards you can earn
Show More Details
Hide Details

How Much Are Venture Miles Worth?

Venture miles have a fixed value, so you’re always getting 1 cent per point. Other programs can give you a better return in some cases, particularly high-value awards like first class airfare, but that doesn’t factor in the time and effort it takes to find those reward seats. Plus, you often have to adjust your travel dates and the return for economy tickets is usually poor.

Why You Should Use the Venture Program

If you don’t have much flexibility in your travel dates and prefer affordable coach to premium cabins, this program is for you.

This rewards program is a great option for beginners or experienced travelers who want to use their points on any flight they want, particularly for cheap economy seats, but are not interested in becoming a serious travel hacker.

It’s also a good additional card for people with other miles and points accounts who would like to travel to places where they can’t get the flights they need through their traditional airline or transfer programs. It’s a great backup to have as part of a larger points and miles strategy.

The Best Ways To Use Capital One No Hassle Rewards

One thing that turns a lot of people off the Venture Rewards program is that until you get a Capital One reward card and sign up, it can be very hard to see exactly what you can do with the program.

But it really is as simple as it seems. You can use your miles for any travel expense you want. There is no Capital One redemption chart to worry about. Every mile is worth a fixed 1 cent each.

The Capital One Purchase Eraser allows you to cancel the cost of any travel transaction with miles from your phone or online account within 90 days of purchase.

Buy what you want from wherever you want and use the Purchase Eraser to cover the cost. It’s that easy. There’s a reason they used to call it No Hassle Rewards.

You also have the option of booking travel through the Venture Rewards portal and paying with miles at the time of the purchase. The competitive Barclaycard Arrival program does not allow you to book directly, so this is a nice option for travel using Capital One miles.

If you want to redeem miles for gift cards through the Capital One Rewards catalog, you’ll find much better redemptions than most loyalty programs. The Capital One Rewards catalog even includes some travel brands, such as Ritz Carlton.

Gift cards and certificates start as low as $10, and you’ll always get a consistent 1-cent-per-point value across all brands.

Venture Rewards Program Perks:

  • Book travel through any website you want and still use your miles to pay for it
  • Great for those who can’t be flexible with travel dates and prefer economy airfare
  • Accrue reward points and miles in other programs, even if you pay for your travel with Venture Reward miles
  • Mobile app allows you to purchase and “erase” travel while on the road
  • No foreign transaction fee

Get the Best Value for Your Miles:

Your best value with No Hassle Venture Rewards will be for flights, hotels and other travel expenses that you would never be able to get for free through another program. That includes non-chain hotels and flights with regional airlines overseas that don’t partner with major carriers.

The upside to No Hassle Rewards, particularly if you use the Venture card to accrue 2 miles per dollar spent on all purchases, is that you know you’re getting a great return. There are no bad redemptions because the value of your miles is fixed.

That’s great when you can’t use other points or miles to get that much value through a specific travel program. That’s often the case when you can’t be flexible with your travel dates and you want to fly economy.

But this program might not be so great for very expensive travel, like first or business class flights.

Booking hotel stays with this program can offer excellent value, too. If you use the Hotels.com/Venture link, you will net a huge 10% return as you get 10 miles per dollar spent through the website.

Bottom Line

Everyone who travel should have a Capital One card in their wallet. Venture Rewards is great program because its simplicity and flexibility. With airlines continually cutting back award availability and devaluing their award charts, programs that allow you to buy any travel from any vendor are becoming even more valuable.

You really can’t go wrong getting the Venture or VentureOne from Capital One and jumping into this No Hassle program.