Capital One Venture Vs Chase Preferred feature image

Capital One Venture Vs Chase Preferred

If you enjoy traveling like me, and relish the feeling of being rewarded with something a little more than a standard travel experience, then travel rewards credit cards are the way to go. Put the right card in your pocket, and you’ll benefit from perks, points, and privileges that raise each journey to another level.

Two of the most popular rewards cards are the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card and the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card. On the face of it, there’s little to choose between them.

Dig a little deeper as I have, and you’ll see there are several key differences that you must consider in your selection. After all, you want the card that delivers for you, don’t you?

Snapshot Verdict

Chase Sapphire Preferred is the best for general use due to its flexible points system, higher potential value through point transfers, and diverse bonus categories.

Chase Sapphire Preferred is also best for travelers who wish to maximize their spending on travel and dining, and prefer enhanced travel protection and rewards flexibility.

Capital One Venture is ideal for those who want an uncomplicated earnings and rewards structure with a flat-rate earning on all purchases and easy redemption options.

Capital One Venture Rewards – An Overview

Capital One Venture card

If you want a credit card with easy-to-understand points earning and redemption policies, then the Capital One Venture card could be for you. There’s no need to think about spending categories before you use the card – every dollar you spend has equal points value.

With the need for meticulous planning eliminated, the Capital One Venture card is ideal if you take spontaneous trips (and who doesn’t enjoy a spur-of-the-moment travel treat?).

You’ll earn two miles for every $1 you spend on your credit card. This is boosted to 5 miles for every rental car and hotel you book through. It really is that simple!

For me, a standout feature of the Capital One Venture card is how easy it is to use the miles you’ve accumulated. You can use them for airline tickets, hotel stays, rental cars, and more, with no blackout dates or restrictions.

For new cardholders, there’s a significant sign-up bonus provided you meet the spending requirement of $4,000 in the first three months.

Chase Sapphire Preferred – An Overview

Chase Sapphire Reserve® card

If you’re prepared to take a more strategic approach to spending, and want a card that pays higher travel and dining rewards, the Chase Sapphire Preferred card is a real winner. Better for the meticulous travel planner, this card delivers on every step – from booking to dining out, and beyond.

Rather than the miles awarded on the Capital One Venture card, the Chase Sapphire Preferred card awards points on eligible spending.

This is where you need to be strategic: x5 points for travel bought via Chase Ultimate Rewards; x3 dining points at restaurants worldwide, including eligible delivery services, takeout, and select streaming services; double points for travel not booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards; and 1 point for every dollar on all other spending.

The real magic unfolds with Chase Sapphire Preferred card’s flexible redemption options. Points are worth 25% more when redeemed for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards.

As a new cardholder, you’ll benefit from a generous welcome bonus upon meeting the requirement to spend $4,000 in the first three months. This could be worth hundreds in travel rewards.

Features In Comparison

FeatureCapital One VentureChase Sapphire Preferred
Annual Fee$95$95
Sign-Up bonus75,000 miles after
spending $4,000 in 3 months
60,000 points after
spending $4,000 in 3 months
Earning Rewards
on Travel
5x on rental cars/hotels
booked through
Capital One Travel
5x on travel booked through
Chase Ultimate Rewards
Earning Rewards
on Dining
2x on all purchases3x on worldwide dining,
including delivery services
and takeout
Other Earning
2x on all purchases2x on all other
travel purchases
1x on all other spending
1 cent every mile
through Capital One
25% more value through
Chase Ultimate Rewards –
equivalent to 1.25 cents
per point
Transfer to over 15
travel programs,
majority at 1:1
1:1 transfer to numerous
Travel InsuranceTravel accident insuranceComprehensive
including trip
Car Rental
Secondary coveragePrimary coverage
Global Entry/TSA
PreCheck Credit
Every four years =
$100 credit
Lounge AccessTwo complimentary
visits to
Plaza Premium or
Capital One lounges
None directly offered
Transaction Fees
Interest On
Variable based on
Variable based on
Never expire as long as
the account is open
and in good standing
Never expire as long as
the account is open
and in good standing

Let’s look at each of the key features in more detail.

Key Features

Both cards charge a $95 annual fee. The credit rating requirement of 670 to 850 is the same for both cards, too, and neither card offers an introductory APR on purchases or balance transfers.

Here’s how the other key features of each card compare:

Sign-Up Bonuses

With the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit card, you leave the runway with a sign-up bonus of 75,000 miles provided you spend $4,000 within the first three months.

This is worth $750 if you redeem these miles through the Capital One Travel portal – a fantastic springboard to your next travel adventure, and a substantial initial boost to your rewards journey.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred card awards a welcome bonus of 60,000 points when you spend $4,000 within the first three months.

You’ll receive a 25% uplift in value on these points should you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards, making the bonus worth $750. A fantastic kickstart to your travel plans.

Earning Rewards

The Capital One Venture card is a champion of simplicity. You earn two miles for every $1 spent on all purchases, which increases to 5 miles for every $1 on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel.

It’s a straightforward earnings formula that means you don’t need to worry about complex spending categories. Personally, I like this – it’s easy to calculate how many miles you’re earning on all your spending.

Conversely, the Chase Sapphire Preferred card offers better rewards if you don’t mind a little strategic shopping. It’s a much more complex earnings matrix:

  • 10x points when you book hotels through the Chase Travel portal
  • 5x points on travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • 3x points on dining worldwide, including eligible delivery services and takeout
  • Double points on other travel purchases
  • A base rate of 1 point per $1 on all other spending

It’s a multi-tiered approach that rewards targeted spending to maximize benefits.

Redemption Options

You’ve earned your points, now what? Both cards offer versatile ways to redeem your points, though the redemption processes are likely to appeal to different types of travelers.

If you’re likely to want to transfer your points to other schemes, the Chase Sapphire Preferred card has a more impressive range of transfer partners. On the other hand, if you’re looking for a straightforward approach to redeeming travel rewards, the Capital One Venture card is better.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Every mile you earn is worth 1 cent should you redeem your points through Capital One’s travel portal. You can also use your miles as a statement credit.

Your miles can also be transferred to more than 15 travel programs, which include airlines and hotels. You’ll receive 1,000 miles or points for every 1,000 Capital One miles you transfer to the following partners:

List of Capital One Venture Credit Card airline transfer partners

As well as all the above, you’ll receive 750 miles if you transfer 1,000 Capital One miles to EVA Air (Infinity MileageLands) and 500 points for transferring 1,000 Capital One miles to ALL (Accor Live Limitless).

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

The Chase Sapphire Preferred boosts the value of your points by offering a 25% bonus when you book travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal.

This means you get an effective 1.25 cents per point, instead of the 1 cent per point if you choose to transfer to another rewards scheme. That’s a big difference when budgeting for flights, hotels, car rentals, and experiences through Chase.

Like the Capital One Venture card, you can also choose to transfer to partner schemes. You can transfer at 1:1 to the following partners:

List of Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card airline transfer partners

As you can see, both rewards programs offer a good slice of flexibility for points/miles redemption – which is best for you depends upon your individual travel preferences.

Travel Benefits and Protections

Of course, the value you reap from a rewards credit card is not only found in the accumulation of points or miles. You should also consider the other perks you could benefit from by being a Capital One Venture or Chase Sapphire card holder.

These perks not only save you money; they also give you peace of mind.

I’m talking about perks like travel and car rental insurance, purchase protection, and more. Capital One focuses on perks that deliver a better travel experience, while Chase Sapphire is better if you plan to rent a car or put travel expenses on your card.

Travel Insurance

As a Capital One Venture cardholder, you have travel accident insurance for you and your family, covering death or dismemberment.

Chase Sapphire goes a step or two further with more comprehensive insurance cover. This includes trip cancellation/interruption insurance, baggage delay insurance, trip delay reimbursement, and travel accident insurance.

Car Rental Insurance

So long as you decline the car rental company’s own insurance, your Capital One Venture card will cover damage due to collision or theft. This fills in the gaps that might not be covered by your personal car insurance.

Sapphire Preferred provides car rental insurance that I really like – primary. This means that all eventualities are covered before you need to claim off your personal car insurance, with most rental vehicles covered at home and abroad (providing you pay with your card and decline the car rental company’s own insurance).

If, like me, you often need a car to go about your business or enjoy your family vacation, you’ll never be ripped off by expensive car rental insurance policies again.

Global Entry / TSA PreCheck Credit

Don’t you just hate the lines at airport security? Then you’re going to love the credit that Capital One Venture gives you for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fees – $100 every four years.

I’ve been in line for over an hour, both ends of an airport, on more than one occasion. How I wish I’d had this credit then.

Extended Warranty Protection and Purchase Protection

With the Capital One Venture card, you get the standard purchase protection for $500 per claim up to 90 days after purchase date provided by credit cards.

Chase Sapphire does much better than this. As well as purchase protection that extends to 120 days and for up to $500 (and $50,000 per account), you also receive an enhanced extended warranty that adds a year to manufacturer’s warranties of three years or less.

No need to even consider accepting a salesperson’s ‘kind offer’ of expensive in-store extended warranty options ever again!

Additional Benefits

There are a couple of other benefits you should know about before deciding which card to apply for.

For example, if you enjoy relaxing in an airport lounge rather than mingling in the melee of an airport, then you could be tempted by two complimentary visits to Capital One or Plaza Premium lounges as a Capital One Venture cardholder.

However, while the Capital One offer puts it among the best credit cards for lounge access, you might prefer the $50 annual hotel credit (for hotel stays booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards) and 10% annual points bonus attached to your Chase Sapphire Preferred card.

Annual Fees & Additional Costs

Both cards charge an annual fee of $95, and neither charge foreign transaction fees (this could add up to significant savings, with many cards charging as much as 3% for transactions outside of the United Sates).

Of course, if you don’t pay off your balance when it is due, you will incur interest charges and possibly late payment fees.

Expiry of Points/Miles

There is no limit on the points or miles you can accumulate on either card, and, providing you keep your account open and in good standing, your points/miles balance will never expire.

10 Tips to Help You Decide

1. If you value simplicity and a straightforward rewards program, the Capital One Venture card is the card for you.

2. Choose the Chase Sapphire Preferred if you frequently spend on travel and dining and want to maximize the value of your points.

3. If you travel internationally, both cards waive foreign transaction fees, but consider other travel benefits that might sway your decision.

4. If your travel often involves car rentals, the Chase Sapphire Preferred provides extra peace of mind with its primary rental insurance.

5.Consider the Capital One Venture card if you appreciate the flexibility of booking travel without blackout dates or specific airline and hotel restrictions.

6. The Chase Sapphire Preferred is best for rewards maximizersand if you are happy to plan your spending and redemption strategy.

7. Look at the sign-up bonuses; if you can meet the spending requirements, these bonuses can significantly offset the annual fee of either card in the first year.

8. If you value protection during your travels, the Chase Sapphire Preferred offers comprehensive coverage.

9. Consider your spending habits; the Capital One Venture’s flat rate on all purchases might be more beneficial.

10. Lastly, consider your long-term travel goals and loyalty to airline or hotel brands, and choose the card that aligns best with your personal travel preferences.

Example Scenarios – Which One Is You?

Both the Capital One Venture card and Chase Sapphire Preferred card are great options if you want a card to build up points or miles to use for travel-related rewards. Which is best for you depends on your spending habits, travel preferences, and rewards optimization strategy.

Using the tips above, here are three examples:

The Frequent Traveler

If you’re a frequent traveler who values a simple-to-use rewards card, the Capital One Venture card could suit you best.

Its flat 2x miles on everyday purchases and 5x on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel make it straightforward to accumulate miles. Its rewards options are super flexible, and with no blackout dates it’s easy to plan time away using your accumulated miles.

On the other hand, if you spend more on frequent travel and dining experiences, the Chase Sapphire Preferredcould prove to offer greater value. The 25% bonus value on travel redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards, together with premium insurance cover, make it a smart choice if you travel frequently and want added security.

The Everyday Spender

If you want to earn rewards for everyday spending, the Capital One Venture card offers an uncomplicated system. You earn 2x points whether you are grocery shopping, filling up the tank, or buying gifts.

This is great for accumulating miles steadily without the complication of figuring out how many miles you will be earning for different types of spending.

If you spend more on travel and dining, the Chase Sapphire Preferred card may be a better option. However, if you are willing to plan your spending more strategically, and leverage the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, the extra effort could deliver higher rewards.

The Rewards Maximizer

The Chase Sapphire Preferredcard points earnings matrix may be more complicated than the easy-to-understand Capital One Venture miles formula, but it’s the card to go for to earn higher rates in specific spending categories.

If you then redeem your points through Chase Ultimate Rewards, you’ll boost their value further. The Capital One Venture card doesn’t offer quite the same potential value.

Travel Reward Credit Card Alternatives

There are alternative travel reward credit cards you might consider, ranging from zero-fee cards to the $650-a-year Amex Platinum card. These include:

  • Bank of America Travel Rewards Credit Card – Great if you want flat rate rewards, no annual fees, and are looking for balance transfer options.
  • American Express Gold Card – A good choice if you want to earn big rewards on everyday spending, including dining and supermarkets.
  • The American Express Platinum Card – Tailored for luxury travelers seeking premium travel perks, such as global dining credits, lounge access, and hotel benefits.
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve –An upgrade from the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, improving benefits including annual travel credits and lounge access, for more frequent travelers.
  • Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card– Ideal if you travel frequently with enhanced travel portal benefits.
  • Bilt World Elite Mastercard Credit Card – A bit of a curveball, this is a unique card that allows you to earn travel rewards on the rent you pay, with no annual fee.

The Bottom Line

Both the Capital One Venture card and Chase Sapphire Preferred card are top credit cards to earn travel rewards.

The Capital One Venture card is ideal if you prefer a straightforward earnings formula and want streamlined travel experiences.

If you are a strategic spender, you might prefer the opportunity to maximize earnings from travel and dining purchases, and the flexibility and value in point transfers offered by the Chase Sapphire Preferred card.

Ultimately, your choice of cards depends upon aligning the card’s benefits with your spending habits and rewards preferences. Of course, there’s nothing to stop you from maximizing your benefits by having more than one card – that’s what I do.

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