In 2018, Capital One joined the transferable points game by adding transfer partners to its line of Capital One Venture and Spark Miles cards. This added a ton of extra value to the already good credit cards and instantly made the mileage currency one that every travel enthusiast should consider.
We’ve seen Capital One beef up the transfer partner list over the years, too. In early 2020, the company added 2 exclusive hotel transfer partners and beefed up its JetBlue transfer ratio.
This move cemented Capital One’s place in the transferable points space and showed that the bank is continuing to work on ways to enhance the Capital One miles experience for its customers.
But is earning Capital One miles right for you? And more importantly, are Capital One miles any good? It’s a good thing you asked because here’s a full review of Capital One miles, Capital One’s transfer partners, and the cards that earn Capital One miles.
Table of contents
- What Are Capital One Miles?
- Capital One Miles Credit Cards
- Earning Bonus Capital One Miles With Capital One Travel
- How to Redeem Capital One Miles
- Comparing Capital One Miles to Other Transferable Points Programs
- Final Thoughts
Table of Contents
- What Are Capital One Miles?
- Capital One Miles Credit Cards
- Earning Bonus Capital One Miles With Capital One Travel
- How to Redeem Capital One Miles
- Comparing Capital One Miles to Other Transferable Points Programs
- Final Thoughts
What Are Capital One Miles?
As discussed, Capital One miles are the mileage currency earned by a handful of Capital One credit cards, both personal and business.
You must have an eligible Capital One credit card to earn these miles, and there is no way to earn them without one of these cards. You can earn Capital One miles on all of your purchases, though, and most Capital One credit cards earn more than 1 point per dollar spent on all purchases, in addition to other awesome benefits.
However, the actual amount of points you’ll earn per dollar spent varies card-to-card. Don’t worry — we’ll run through how many points each Capital One miles credit card earns in the next section of this article. Just note that some Capital One cards earn up to 5x Capital One miles per dollar spent in specific spend categories!
You can redeem your Capital One miles in a variety of different ways, but we think that transferring them to travel partners is the best. This is because you’ll get the most value for your miles and be able to book things like ANA first class, Emirates first class, and even tickets in Singapore Suites!
Capital One Miles Credit Cards
You can earn Capital One miles with a variety of different Capital One-issued personal and business credit cards.
Here’s a quick look at all of the credit cards that earn Capital One miles.
The Venture card is Capital One’s classic travel rewards credit card. It offers 2x points per dollar on all purchases. This makes the card an easy go-to for many travelers — you don’t have to worry about using a specific card for bonus points in a specific purchase category. Instead, you’ll earn 2x points per dollar across the board, making it easy to rack up points.
The card has some other neat benefits, too. Namely, it comes with a $100 statement that you can use towards your TSA PreCheck or Global Entry application fee. Simply charge the fee to your Venture card, and you’ll see the application be refunded in the form of a statement credit when your statement closes.
Further, the card has no foreign transaction fees. This means that you can make purchases abroad or pay for purchases in a foreign currency without being penalized. Some cards charge up to 3% per foreign transaction, so a $100 purchase quickly becomes a $103 purchase.
Hot Tip: The Venture card comes with complimentary OpenTable Premium Access. Use this benefit to reserve tables at hard-to-book restaurants in major cities around the U.S., like the Loyal in New York City, and Jeong in Chicago. Many of these restaurants have huge waitlists for reservations, making this perk a nice addition for foodies.
For lack of a better term, the VentureOne card is the Venture card’s little brother. The card has no annual fee, but also earns fewer points, and has fewer benefits.
Instead of earning 2x points on all purchases, the VentureOne card earns 1.25x points per dollar. This isn’t the best no-annual-fee card we’ve seen — the Chase Freedom Unlimited® card earns 1.5% cash-back on all purchases — but it’s still better than standard 1 point per dollar spent.
Thankfully, though, the card does have no foreign transaction fees and still includes OpenTable Premium Access. Further, it’s one of the only no annual fee credit cards whose points you can transfer to travel partners. Because of this, we still think the VentureOne card is still worth a look for travelers who don’t want to deal with fees.
Recommended Capital One Credit Cards (Personal)
|Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card - This card is packed with a lot more benefits and perks. Earn a 50,000 mile sign up bonus (worth $500 toward travel) once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening. We recommend this as a no-brainer card if you even semi-regularly stay at hotels.|
|Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card - This is an excellent card for those looking to earn 1.25x miles per $1 on every purchase. With a 20,000 mile sign up bonus (worth $200 toward travel) after spending $1,000 within the first 3 months and no annual fee, it's a strong choice.|
On the other hand, we have the CapOne Spark Miles card. This card is similar to the standard Venture card, but it has business-specific benefits that make it useful for businesses of all types and sizes. Unlike the popular Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business, though, it earns Capital One miles instead of cash-back.
Like the Venture card, businesses can earn 2x points per dollar spent on all purchases, and 5x points on hotel bookings and car rentals booked through the Capital One Travel portal. Just note that these hotel stays may not be eligible to earn hotel points or use elite status benefits (if you have them).
Further, there’s an included TSA PreCheck or Global Entry credit for the primary cardholder. As you’d expect, the CapOne Spark Miles card also has no foreign transaction fees, making it great for businesses that pay international invoices with a credit card.
There are some business-specific benefits that Capital One adds to all of its Spark business credit cards, too. This includes the ability to easily export purchase records, generate year-end spending summaries, and request free employee cards with set spending limits. You can also elect account managers on your team to make payments, manage statements, and more.
The CapOne Spark Miles Select card is the no annual fee version of the CapOne Spark Miles card. Like the VentureOne card is to the Venture card, this card earns fewer points and has fewer benefits, but maybe worthwhile for cash-strapped companies and other businesses that don’t want to lock up cash in card annual fees.
The card earns 1.5x points per dollar spent on all purchases, and no foreign transaction fees. You’ll also earn 5x points per dollar spent on rental cars and hotel rooms booked through Capital One Travel, making it easy to earn some bonus points on employee travel booked through the portal.
Recommended Capital One Credit Cards (Business)
|Capital One® Spark® Miles Select for Business - This no annual fee card earns unlimited 1.5x miles per dollar on every purchase and has a 20,000 mile sign up bonus [worth $200 in travel] after meeting the minimum spend of $3,000 within the first 3 months. Save on interest with 0% intro APR on purchases for 9 months; 13.99% - 23.99% variable APR after that.|
|Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business - This card earns unlimited 2x miles per dollar on every purchase, everywhere, and has a one-time bonus of 50,000 miles [worth $500 in travel] after spending $4,500 on purchases within the first 3 months. Plus, earn 5x miles on hotel and rental card bookings through Capital OneSM using a Spark Miles card. Annual Feel: $0 intro for the first year, $95 after that.|
Earning Bonus Capital One Miles With Capital One Travel
Beyond making purchases with your Capital One credit card, there aren’t many ways to earn bonus Capital One miles.
However, there is 1 exception to this for business owners with one of Capital One’s business cards: booking rental cars and hotel rooms through Capital One Travel.
Capital One Travel is Capital One’s in-house online travel agency (OTA). If you have a CapOne Spark Miles card or a CapOne Spark Miles Select card, you’ll earn 5x Capital One miles per dollar when you book rental cars and hotels through the portal. This can help you rack up some serious bonus points if you have lots of paid travel expenses.
This means that a $500 hotel stay would earn a whopping 2,500 Capital One miles. As of early 2020, we value Capital One miles at 1.35 cents per point, meaning that this points haul is worth — at a minimum — a cool $33.75.
This is especially lucrative for businesses that regularly charge client-reimbursable travel expenses to their business credit card. Book these through the Capital One Travel portal and you’ll effectively earn and enjoy free Capital One miles.
How to Redeem Capital One Miles
Capital One offers a variety of ways for its cardholders to redeem Capital One miles. While we generally suggest sticking with moving points to transfer partners, there are a few other ways Capital One miles can be redeemed, too.
So to give you a full look at your options, we’ll take you through all of your Capital One miles redemption options in the paragraphs below.
Transferring Capital One miles to Transfer Partners
By far the most lucrative way to redeem your Capital One miles is by transferring them to one of Capital One’s numerous transfer partners. The bank’s list of transfer partners include some of the most well-known airline mileage programs and hotel loyalty programs, and some of its transfer partners are exclusive to Capital One.
The upside to transferring to travel partners instead of using one of Capital One’s other redemption options is that you’re not restricted to a single point value. Instead, the value of your miles depends on what you’re actually redeeming your points for after you transfer your miles.
Doing this will likely give you over 4.0 cents per point in value, which is 4 times more value than if you were to use the Purchase Eraser or another one of the bank’s other various redemption options.
Instead, there are 2 different transfer tiers: 2:1 and 2:1.5, meaning that 2 Capital One miles are worth either 1 or 1.5 airline miles or hotel points depending on the transfer partner. The bulk of transfer partners fall into the latter camp, which is the more lucrative of the 2 transfer ratios.
An example of this is transferring Capital One miles to Air Canada’s Aeroplan loyalty program. Transferring 100,000 Capital One miles to Aeroplan would yield 75,000 points, which is enough to go from the U.S. to Asia in business class on a Star Alliance carrier like Air Canada, All Nippon Airways (ANA), or United Airlines, amongst others.
Here’s a quick look at all of the Capital One miles transfer partners, alongside their transfer rates:
|Capital One Transfer Partner||Min Transfer||Transfer Ratio (Cap One > Airline)||Transfer Time|
|Accor Live Limitless||1,000||2:1||Up to 36 hours|
|Aeromexico Club Premier||1,000||2:1.5||Almost Instant|
|Air Canada Aeroplan||1,000||2:1.5||Almost Instant|
|Flying Blue AIR FRANCE KLM||1,000||2:1.5||Almost Instant|
|Alitalia MilleMiglia||1,000||2:1.5||Almost Instant|
|Avianca LifeMiles||1,000||2:1.5||Almost Instant|
|Cathay Pacific Asia Miles||1,000||2:1.5||Up to 36 hours|
|Emirates Skywards||1,000||2:1||Almost Instant|
|Etihad Guest||1,000||2:1.5||Up to 36 hours|
|EVA Infinity MileageLands||1,000||2:1.5||Up to 36 hours|
|Finnair Plus||1,000||2:1.5||Almost Instant|
|Hainan Fortune Wings Club||1,000||2:1.5||Up to 36 hours|
|JetBlue TrueBlue||1,000||2:1.5||Almost Instant|
|Qantas Frequent Flyer||1,000||2:1.5||Up to 36 hours|
|Qatar Airways Privilege Club||1,000||2:1.5||Up to 36 hours|
|Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer||1,000||2:1||Up to 36 hours|
|Wyndham Rewards||1,000||2:1.5||Up to 36 hours|
Many of these transfer partners overlap with Ultimate Rewards, Membership Rewards, and ThankYou. However, Accor Live Limitless and Wyndham Rewards are exclusive to Capital One miles, so adding a Capital One card to your wallet will open you up to even more hotel redemptions, even if you have a stash of other points.
How to Transfer Your Capital One miles to Transfer Partners
Transferring your Capital One miles to airline miles or hotel points is simple. We want to remind you that — before you transfer any type of transferable points — you should already find the ticket you want to book and ensure that award space is available.
Doing this will prevent you from locking up your points without a plan. Likewise, it’ll make sure you’re not stuck with airline miles or hotel points that you can’t use.
Keeping your points as liquid as possible until you redeem them is a key thing you can do to make sure that you get the best value for your points and miles when it comes time to redeem them.
Now, here’s a quick walkthrough on transferring your Capital One miles to any one of Capital One’s various transfer partners.
- First thing’s first: you have to have a loyalty account with the airline or hotel program you want to transfer Capital One miles to. Open this account and ensure that your first and last name on the airline or hotel loyalty account matches your Capital One account exactly — this will ensure there’s no delay in your mileage transfer.
- Head to the Capital One website, log in to your account, and navigate to your Venture card or other Capital One miles-earning credit card’s page.
- Click the Transfer Miles button on the right-hand side of the screen and find the transfer partner you’d like to move miles to. Then, click the Transfer Miles button to the right of the name of the transfer partner. Enter your airline or hotel loyalty info exactly as it appears in your airline or hotel loyalty account website, membership card, or mobile app and click the Next button.
- Enter the amount of Capital One miles you’d like to transfer in the box at the center of the screen and click the green Transfer Miles button at the bottom of the window to initiate your transfer.
- Copy down the on-screen confirmation code in case you run into any hiccups with your transfer. If all goes according to plan, your Capital One miles will be transferred to your transfer partner of choice! Check the chart in the last section for transfer times for all the Capital One miles transfer partners.
That’s all there is to it. You’ve successfully transferred your Capital One miles to one of Capital One’s airline or hotel transfer partners.
Remember, each transfer partner has its own transfer times. Call Capital One using the number on the back of your card if your transfer isn’t completed in time.
A Look at Some of the Best Capital One Miles Redemptions
Need a bit of inspiration for your next Capital One miles redemption? We have a full article on the best Capital One miles redemptions and have pulled a few of our favorites into the paragraphs below. Check these out, and then take a look at the best ways to redeem Capital One Miles before you plan your next big mileage redemption. Chances are you’ll find something you haven’t thought of before!
Live the High Life in Emirates First Class
Emirates’ first class is one of the most aspirational first-class products in the sky. It includes top-notch dining, a huge seat, and even a shower in the sky on A380 flights.
But as you’d expect, this comes at a huge price: you can expect to pay over $15,000 for a one-way first-class flight between New York City (JFK/EWR) and Dubai (DXB) on the airline.
Thankfully though, you can cut this price down to just the price of taxes and fees with your Capital One miles. You can transfer miles from Capital One to Emirates Skywards at a rate of 2:1, meaning that 1,000 Capital One miles equals 500 Emirates Skywards miles.
The JFK/EWR to DXB route discussed earlier costs 136,250 Emirates Skywards miles and a little over $800 in taxes and fees. While this is undoubtedly an expensive award ticket from both a points and cash perspective, it’s still over $14,000 cheaper than paying out of pocket and makes this aspirational award ticket attainable for those with Capital One miles.
Fly Singapore Suites First Class to Europe, Asia, and Beyond!
Another favorite first class products is Singapore Suites first class. This product offers delicious dining, impeccable service, and — if you’re traveling with a companion — a full double bed in the sky. This is an aspirational award ticket for many, and you can fly it to Asia, Australia, and even Europe from the United States.
As you learned, Capital One miles transfer to Singapore Airlines Krisflyer miles at a 2:1 ratio. Once transferred, you can use just 86,000 Singapore Airlines miles to fly New York (JFK) to Frankfurt (FRA) in Suites first class — this is arguably the most luxurious way to fly from the U.S. to Europe, so we highly recommend giving it a look.
You can continue to from Frankfurt to Singapore for 132,000 Singapore Airlines miles total, giving you even more time to indulge in Suites class. Plus, you’ll have access to an excellent first class lounge during your quick layover in Frankfurt, and you can even schedule in a stopover for $100 if there’s award space available on the dates you’d like to fly.
Fly to Europe and Beyond on SkyTeam Airlines With Flying Blue
Air France and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines merged a few years ago. In the process, the 2 European airlines merged their respective loyalty programs into 1, naming the program Flying Blue.
This airline loyalty program partners with all of the major transferable points programs and Capital One miles are no exception. Flying Blue offers some of the best award pricing in premium cabins to Europe through both Air France and KLM as well as its SkyTeam partners.
One thing to note, however, is that the airline uses dynamic pricing to price its award tickets. This means that there’s no standard award pricing and that award tickets are priced based on demand, passenger load, and other factors.
And while this makes some award tickets extremely expensive, there are a ton of great deals to be found.
For example, you can consistently find tickets from the U.S. to Europe pricing at under 60,000 Flying Blue miles one-way in business class with moderate taxes and fees.
In the example above, we see a non-stop award ticket from New York (JFK) to London (LHR) pricing at just 58,500 miles and $10.10 in taxes and fees on Delta Air Lines.
So if you’re looking for a luxurious trip to Europe this year, make sure to run a search on Flying Blue. This could save you a ton of miles when compared to using other transfer partners (or the Purchase Eraser), and can let you experience some of the best business class products between the U.S. and Europe.
Book Cheap U.S. Domestic Flights With Avianca LifeMiles
Want to stay stateside instead? Consider transferring your Capital One miles to Avianca LifeMiles and you can book United Airlines domestic tickets on the cheap.
Avianca is a member of the Star Alliance, which is the same as United Airlines. This means that you use Avianca miles to book tickets on United Airlines, and vice-versa. And thankfully, Avianca offers really good redemption rates on United Airlines flights — in fact, they can be up to half the price of redeeming United’s own miles for select domestic awards.
You can see the Avianca LifeMiles award chart on the airline’s website. You’ll probably notice that the U.S. is split up into 3 different zones, with 1 representing the East Coast, another representing the Midwest, and another representing the West Coast.
According to the award chart, a single zone is 7,500 miles in economy class, a flight from 1 zone to the next closest zone is 10,000 miles, and a flight that flies between all 3 zones — think zone 1 to zone 3 — is 12,500 miles. This is a pretty solid value as it stands, but for some reason, we’ve found that many awards actually price lower than this.
For example, we ran a search for a flight from Washington, D.C. (IAD) to Chicago (ORD) and found that it prices at 7,500 LifeMiles one-way in economy class. This is 2,500 LifeMiles less than the advertised price and is by far the best way to use your Capital One miles to fly between the 2 cities.
Likewise, Pittsburgh (PIT) to Newark (EWR) — a route that can be very expensive on peak business travel days — prices at just 6,500 miles one-way in economy class. This is an absolute steal, especially when paid flights are pricey.
Covering Travel Expenses With the Purchase Eraser
One of the flagship features of Capital One miles is access to Capital One’s proprietary Purchase Eraser tool. The Purchase Eraser lets you redeem your Capital One miles at 1 cent per point towards any travel expense that you charge to your Capital One miles earning credit card.
For example, if you charge a $25 Lyft ride to your credit card, you can redeem 2,500 Capital One miles to “erase it” from your statement.
Any travel expense is eligible — from baggage fees to airfare to rideshare — so long as the purchase codes as a travel expense. Thankfully, Capital One’s definition of a travel expense is broad, so you shouldn’t have any issue using the tool to cover charges even remotely related to travel.
Regardless, we recommend steering clear of this redemption option as you are limited to a 1 cent per point redemption value. Again, we value Capital One miles at 1.35 cents per point or more, so you’re losing at least 0.35 cents per point in value when using the Purchase Eraser over transferring miles to a transfer partner.
The Purchase Eraser tool can be good to have in your back pocket, though. You can use it to cover unplanned travel expenses, or cash-out for Uber rides, taxi trips, and even public transportation costs if you don’t plan on traveling soon.
Turn Your Capital One Miles Into Gift Cards
You can redeem your Capital One miles for gift cards to popular merchants like Applebee’s, AutoZone, Macy’s, and others. All gift card redemptions are processed at a value of 1 cent per point, meaning that 50,000 Capital One miles is equal to a $500 gift card to a merchant of your choice.
Like the Purchase Eraser, we don’t recommend redeeming your Capital One miles for gift cards as you’ll get a lower cent per point value than if you redeemed through one of Capital One’s transfer partners.
However, if you don’t have any upcoming travel plans, gift cards are a better use of points than if you were to redeem for cash-back or through Amazon.
Cover Amazon Purchases With Capital One miles
Like Chase Ultimate Rewards and American Express Membership Rewards, you can use your Capital One miles to cover Amazon purchases on the checkout screen. Simply add your Capital One card to your Amazon payment methods and you’ll have the option to use miles to cover your Amazon purchases.
Just keep in mind that you’ll get a really low point valuation if you go this route. Capital One miles can be redeemed at a flat-rate of 0.8 cents per mile spent, which is even lower than using the Purchase Eraser or redeeming miles for gift cards. For reference, the 0.8 cent valuation towards Amazon purchases means 125 Capital One miles gives you $1 off your purchase.
So with that in mind, stay away from this type of redemption. It may be a convenient way to use your points to save money on everyday purchases, but you’ll lose tons of value in the process.
Redeem for a Statement Credit or Check
Finally, you can redeem your Capital One miles for cash-back in the form of a statement credit or a check.
However, we don’t necessarily recommend doing this. Like gift cards and the Purchase Eraser, you’ll get a flat 0.5 cents per point in value when redeeming miles this way. So, 50,000 miles would be worth just $250.
With that in mind, we recommend that you avoid cashing out your Capital One miles for statement credit or a check. You’re better off redeeming for a gift card or even redeeming points through Amazon if you want to use your miles to cover everyday expenses.
Comparing Capital One Miles to Other Transferable Points Programs
As you know, Capital One miles isn’t the only transferable points currency out there. Here’s a look at how these miles stack up to other transferable points programs like Amex, Chase, and Citi.
Capital One Miles vs. American Express Membership Rewards Points
American Express Membership Rewards is a premier transferable points program. The program has more transfer partners than Capital One, and its personal and business cards have more points earning options, too.
For example, the American Express® Gold Card earns 4x points per dollar spent at worldwide restaurants and at U.S. grocery stores. When you take into account that almost all of the Membership Rewards transfer partners transfer at a 1:1 ratio, many will find that Membership Rewards are more valuable than Capital One miles.
Further, Capital One and American Express share many of the same transfer partners. There are some exceptions to this rule, though — for example, Accor and Wyndham are exclusive to Capital One.
On the other hand, do note that many Membership Rewards-earning credit cards have higher annual fees than Capital One cards. Likewise, there’s no Purchase Eraser tool that you can use for wiping away travel expenses, so you may be better off with a Capital One card if you want to use points to cover random travel expenses.
Capital One Miles vs. Chase Ultimate Rewards Points
Like Membership Rewards, Chase’s Ultimate Rewards points currency can be more easily earned than Capital One miles. This is especially true for business owners as the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card earns 3x points per dollar spent in select business spending categories, including travel, shipping, and online advertising, amongst others.
Further, Chase Ultimate Rewards points transfer 1:1 to all of its transfer partners. And while there’s no Purchase Eraser tool, you can redeem your points at up to 1.5 cents per point in value towards paid bookings through the Chase Travel Portal. The value you’ll get depends on the Ultimate Rewards credit card you have, though.
Note that we recommend starting out with Ultimate Rewards points when you start your miles and points journey. This is because Chase’s famous 5/24 rule makes those with over 5 new credit cards in the past 24 months ineligible for new Chase credit cards.
Capital One Miles vs. Citi ThankYou Points
Citi’s ThankYou Points currency is another underdog of the miles and points world. It isn’t quite as well known as Amex or Chase’s options, but it’s worth a look if you’re over 5/24 and want to take advantage of exclusive transfer partners like Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles.
Just note that we value Citi ThankYou points below Ultimate Rewards and Membership Rewards points, but above Capital One miles. So, you may want to check out Citi ThankYou before Capital One, but only after you’ve exhausted your options for earning more valuable points currencies.
Now you know the ins-and-outs of Capital One miles. We started by discussing what these miles are, then we took a look at how to earn them, how to spend them, and compared them against other types of transferable points.
In the end, we think that Capital One miles are a solid addition to your portfolio of points and miles. They may not be as valuable as Chase Ultimate Rewards or American Express Membership Rewards, but the unique set of transfer partners, lucrative earning on non-bonus spend categories, and interesting credit card benefits make them interesting for specific uses.
We highly recommend that you stick to redeeming your Capital One miles through transfer partners. This will give you loads more value than using the Purchase Eraser or requesting statement credit. Remember to check out our full guide to redeeming Capital One miles for a complete list of awesome CapOne miles redemptions.