Review: Capital One Venture X

Review: Capital One Venture X

UPDATE: The previous 100k + $200 vacation rental credit offer ended on 3/14/2022. The new offer is 75k for $4k spend in 3 months.

Dare I say, the Capital One Venture X might be the most exciting card to have launched since the Chase Sapphire Reserve refresh back in 2016.

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The Quick Summary

Over the years, many issuers like Amex have been adding complicated, often hard to use credits that basically make their cards seem like glorified coupon books. Although you can get value out of it, it will take time and effort to keep track - something not everyone who isn't super into this hobby wants (or should do).

If you are looking for a super simplistic, well-rounded travel card that has all the standard perks like lounge access, travel and purchase protection, rental car status and good earning categories - PLUS an amazing welcome offer, then this is the card for you!

Capital One Venture X card

Overview

Annual Fee: $395

Signup Bonus: 100,000 Capital One Miles (worth at least $1000) + $200 vacation rental credit (Airbnb, VRBO, etc.) after you spend $10,000 within first 6 months of account opening (~$1667/month).

UPDATE 4/1: This offer has expired, current offer is 75,000 Capital One Miles after you $3000 spend within 3 months.

Signup bonus (now expired)

Main Credits:

  • $300 Annual Travel Credit (any travel booked through Capital One Travel)
  • $100 / 10,000 pts Anniversary Bonus after renewing every year

Earning Categories:

  • 10x Miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
  • 5x Miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • 2x Miles on everything else

Main Benefits:

  • Lounge Access: Unlimited access to Capital One & Priority Pass lounges, with 2 free guests (more details below).
  • Free Authorized Users: Add up to FOUR authorized users for free (more details below).
  • Transferrable Currency: Like Chase Ultimate Rewards and Amex Membership Rewards, Capital One miles can be transferred to 15+ airline and travel partners (more details below).
  • Hertz Presidential's Circle Status: Get perks such as free additional driver, guaranteed upgrades, etc.
  • Primary Car Rental Protection: Decline Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) when renting as it is already included when you pay for rental using the Venture X card.
  • Extended Warranty: Get additional warranty protection when paying with Venture X card.
  • Return Protection: Get reimbursed within 90 days of purchase even if outside Merchant's return period.
  • Cell Phone Protection: Reimbursed for stolen or damaged phones, up to $800, when paying your bill with Venture X card.
  • Global Entry/ TSA PreCheck credit: every 4 years
  • Travel Accident Insurance
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees

Full Details: [Official Site]

Lounge Access
This includes access to Capital One Lounges (currently only 1 open in DFW, View From The Wing did a great review here) as well as unlimited access to lounges in the Priority Pass network. The Priority Pass membership is arguably better than Amex's, since Capital One's (along with Chase's) allow access to non-lounge experiences such as airport restaurants and spas. Each cardmember is allowed up to 2 additional guests free of charge.

Additionally, as of June 2022, Venture X cardholders can now access Plaza Premium, select Virgin Atlantic lounges! This is really positive news and really putting pressure on justifying keeping the Amex Platinum. For full list of eligible lounges, check out this link.

Capital One Lounge | Source: Capital One

Also check out AskSebby's (one of my favorite credit card YouTubers!) recent review of the Capital One Lounge at DFW:

Free Authorized Users
This may be THE biggest reason for me to sign up for this card. You can add up to 4 additional users for free (each getting their own lounge access membership and Hertz President's Circle status)! Compare this to Chase Sapphire Reserve where they charge an additional $75 for one user and Amex Platinum $175 for three additional users.

Transfer Partners
Capital One miles have been getting better over the years, and currently has 15+ airline and hotel transfer partners, many transferring at 1:1 ratio. Some great ones include Air Canada Aeroplan, Avianca LifeMiles, Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer, which can all be used to book Star Alliance award tickets such as EVA Air Business Class. Other great programs include British Airways Avios, Emirates Skywards, and Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles (great for cheap business class tickets to Hawaii!). For more info, check out this post by Upgraded Points!

Transfer Capital One points to fly EVA Air Business Class for free!

Capital One Credit Card Applications
Note that traditionally Capital One credit cards have been geared more towards those who have lower credit scores and have a higher likelihood of carrying a balance. Thus, historically those with good credit scores/history find themselves rejected when applying. The good news is this does not seem to be the case for the new Venture X card, which makes sense since this is marketed as a more premium travel card. That being said, I was personally denied (most likely due to too many recent applications with other issuers), so you may want to hold off a bit if you recently applied for other cards (~last 2-3 months). Luckily, my girlfriend was instantly approved and added me as an authorized user!

Btw, the card is metal (if anyone was wondering)

Potential Concerns

  • 5/24 - As previously covered, I generally recommend getting Chase cards first then coming back to other issuers. However, I personally think this card is SO good it may be worth getting anyways.
  • Approval Uncertainty - (see details above) There doesn't seem to be a pattern for Capital One approvals, so you risk getting a hard inquiry and not getting approved (not a big deal, it will only be a temporary mark on your credit report and will fall off in a month or two).
  • Capital One Travel - Since this is all really new, we don't know too many details on whether the travel portal is all that great. However, based on the reviews so far, it seems to perform on par or better than most travel portals out there.
  • Substantial Minimum Spend - In order to get the 100,000 points signup bonus, you will need to spend $10k within the first 6 months (~$1667/month) of getting the card (not including the annual fee). Timing this with a large purchase like upcoming vacation or new laptop will definitely help make this more feasible to hit. For other ideas on how to meet the minimum spend, check out this previous post.

Overall Verdict

As other issuers have increasingly moved towards petty credits as an excuse to raise the annual fee, Capital One's Venture X is a refreshing change that makes it stand out from the crowded credit cards market.

Just the signup bonus alone will provide you over $1200 of value. Furthermore, this can be a long-term keeper card, even if you just travel 1-2 times a year. The $300 travel credit can be used to book anything from hotels to rental cars to flights. Additionally, the $100/10k pts anniversary bonus essentially makes this card a $5 profit-maker just by using the travel credit and renewing each year:

- $395 annual fee
+ $300 travel credit
+ $100 anniversary bonus
= $5 profit/year

This card checks all the boxes on the standard protections of a great credit card, assuring you that your purchases and travel are always covered if the unexpected happen.

Simplicity is also a huge part of what makes this card so special. The Venture X is beginner friendly for those new to the points & miles game or those who don't want to keep track of all the quirks of this hobby. No hoops to jump through or confusing monthly credits to keep track of (looking at you Amex) - just use it as your daily driver and redeem your points easily as statement credits, cashback, travel, or transferring them to airline partners for free flights in business class! At the minimum, this card acts as a 2% everything card for non-bonus categories, which is pretty solid!

Finally, the free authorized user benefit allows one card holder to share all the perks with an entire family! I strongly recommend this card for anyone who spends more than $300 on travel a year, especially those who want a simple 1-card setup.

I'll be constantly updating this post over the next few months as we find out more, stay tuned!