Earn 60,000 bonus miles when you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. Here's the best way to use your rewards.

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is one of the most popular travel reward cards out there.

Cardholders love the fact that, for a low annual fee, the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card features two miles per dollar spent on all purchases with no limits, and that you can use your miles for nearly any travel expense. And it doesn’t hurt that Capital One runs frequent TV ads featuring celebrities like Samuel L. Jackson and Jennifer Garner.

Let’s take a closer look at how this reward program works, and how to get the most value from your miles.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card basics

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With the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card, new applicants currently receive 60,000 bonus miles when you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. They then earn double miles on all purchases, and those miles get credited to your account each month when your statement closes.

Rewards are earned on your net purchases, so you won’t earn miles on the value of any returns. Note that this card has an annual fee of $95 so that may be a consideration for whether you want to get the card. But there are plenty of other attractions: no foreign transaction fees, you can use your Venture miles on flights, hotels and more—and you can even transfer miles to any of Capital One’s 15+ travel loyalty programs, and you can receive up to $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓ making it one of our top choices for credit cards to take on an international trip.

Capital one also offers the Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card. This card, unlike the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card, has no annual fee which makes it an attractive pick. But it only offers 1.25 miles per dollar spent. Still, its sign-up bonus is 20,000 miles, worth $200 in travel statement credits, after spending $500 within three months of account opening.

Otherwise, the Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card and the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card are very similar: no foreign transaction fees, you can receive up to $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓, and you can use your Venture miles on flights, hotels and more—and you can even transfer miles to any of Capital One’s 15+ travel loyalty programs.

Redeeming Capital One Venture miles for previous travel purchases

There are several ways that you can use your miles. First, you can use the Capital One Purchase Eraser to redeem your miles as a statement credit towards any of your previous travel purchases.

To use this feature, just login to your Capital One account and click on your rewards balance. Then you’ll have the option to “Redeem Travel Purchases,” also known as the Purchase Eraser. From there, you can choose which travel purchases you would like to use your miles to pay for.

You can credit your miles to purchases made directly from travel providers such as airlines, hotels, car rental companies, and cruise operators. You can also credit your miles to purchases from other travel companies such as online travel agents and tour operators.

To redeem your miles with the Purchase Eraser, you must have made the reservation within the previous 90 days. Then, your account will be credited within two to three business days after the redemption.

Using your miles to book new travel reservations

Another way to use your miles is to book new reservations through the Capital One Rewards Center. Capital One’s Reward Center is similar to other travel booking sites you’ve likely used in the past. The Rewards Center offers flights, car rentals, and hotel reservations that you can directly book with your miles.

Other ways to redeem your miles

Capital One offers other ways to use your miles, besides travel. You can redeem your miles for gift cards from many major retailers including Amazon.com, at a cost of one mile per cent in value.

Another option is cash in the form of an account credit or a check by mail. However, your miles are only worth a half a cent each towards this option.

You can also donate your rewards through the Capital One No Hassle Giving site. Capital One works with the Network for Good to disperse your 100% donation to the charity of your choice.

Finally, you can transfer your rewards to another cardholder of your choice. This allows you to pool rewards for use by your friends or family, or simply to make a gift. And unlike many airline and hotel reward programs, Capital One doesn’t charge a fee to transfer your miles.

Tips for redeeming Capital One Venture miles

Miles from your Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card or Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card are worth the most when redeemed for new or previous travel reservations.

When redeeming your miles for previous travel reservations using the Purchase Eraser, you can book travel the way you normally would, with no blackout dates or capacity controls. And if you already have elite status with an airline or hotel program, you will still qualify for upgrades.

It’s entirely up to you if you want to book your travel directly with an airline, hotel, or rental car company, or use your favorite online (or offline) travel agency. But if you prefer to use a travel agency, you could consider using the Capital One Reward Center, which is essentially a travel agency that you have access to as a Capital One cardholder.

Redeeming your miles for gift cards also offers the same value as travel reservations: one cent per mile redeemed. However, you want to avoid redeeming your miles for cash, as you will only receive a half a cent per mile.

Summary

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card offers a competitive travel rewards program you can use to your benefit if you know when it’s best to utilize certain rewards. You should opt out of cash redemption and use rewards towards travel—this offers the most dollars per mile.

Read more:

  • Reviewed: Capital One Venture and VentureOne travel rewards credit cards
  • Compare all of our recommended Capital One Credit Cards

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About the author

Total Articles: 37
Jason Steele has been writing about credit cards, travel and personal finance since 2008, and is passionate about using his cards to travel for free. Jason contributes to many of the top personal finance and travel sites and has been widely quoted in mainstream media as a credit card expert. Jason lives in Denver Colorado where he enjoys bicycling, snowboarding and flying. You can follow Jason on Twitter, Facebook or on his website.