The Chase Sapphire Preferred® vs. The Capital One Venture Rewards Card

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The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is a very popular travel rewards card that receives many accolades. It’s often recommended as a desirable first travel rewards card because it serves as a solid foundation for earning flexible travel rewards, it offers redemptions that provide good value, and it hosts a long list of benefits.

So you might be asking why we’ve chosen to pit the Chase Sapphire Preferred against the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card. The Chase Sapphire Preferred, after all, is a reigning champ in its category. But like any reigning champ, challengers surface that require the champ to defend its title.

Fortunately in this battle, there isn’t a winner or loser — both cards measure up well when we look at earnings, redemption options, and benefits. Today we’ll break down how each card delivers in all the categories that matter when you’re considering a travel rewards card.

And regardless of which card prevails in the challenge, as a frequent traveler, you’ll always be the winner!

Here’s all the important information you’ll need to evaluate these two cards for yourself.

Welcome Bonuses

The Value of a Welcome Bonus

Receiving a sign-up bonus when you meet the spending requirements on your credit card can jumpstart your earnings with points that are worth hundreds of dollars when redeemed for travel. The bonus is usually achieved by meeting a designated minimum spend within the first 3 months after you are approved for the card.

Don’t miss out on the welcome bonus when you sign up for a card — it’s the quickest way to begin building a bank of valuable rewards points.

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

Capital One Venture Rewards Card

For information on this card’s pricing and welcome bonus, see our Venture Rewards review.

Hot Tip: Securing the initial welcome bonus is the fastest way to accumulate valuable points. Planning the timing of your credit card application to take advantage of a large upcoming purchase or expense ensures you’ll be able to meet this important spending requirement in the first 3 months after card approval. 

Amtrak
Receive 2X earnings on all your travel purchases. Image Credit: Amtrak Vacations

Ultimate Rewards Points vs. Capital One Miles

The Chase Sapphire Preferred earns rewards in the form of Ultimate Rewards points, while the Capital One Venture Rewards card earns rewards that are simply referred to as “miles.”

Just note that Capital One “miles” are really just points and function as points; they are not the same as airline miles.

Earning Potential

A frequent traveler could fare well with either of these travel rewards cards, as both deliver respectable earnings on travel and dining purchases.

If hotel elite benefits are not a priority, the 10X earnings at Hotels.com using the Venture Rewards card could result in stellar earnings. These earnings may be temporary, however, as they are scheduled to end in January 2020.

Also, if your spending is not primarily in the bonus categories of the Chase Sapphire Preferred, receiving 2X rewards on every purchase with the Venture Rewards card vs. 1 point per dollar spent on the Sapphire Preferred is a genuine advantage.

Bonus Earning CategorySapphire Preferred (Ultimate Rewards Points)Venture Rewards (CapOne Miles)
  • Travel Purchases
  • 2 points per dollar
  • 2 miles per dollar
  • Hotels
  • 2 points per dollar
  • 10 miles per dollar spent at Hotels.com/venture
  • 2 miles per dollar spent at all other hotels
  • Dining
  • 2 points per dollar
  • 2 miles per dollar
  • All Other Purchases
  • 1 point per dollar
  • 2 miles per dollar

Bottom Line: If you’re a frequent traveler who spends a lot on travel and dining, either card will work well for you since both earn 2X points/miles in those bonus category purchases. If your spending is outside of these bonus categories, the Venture Rewards card with 2 miles per dollar earnings on every purchase may be a better match. 

Redemption Options

How you earn points and miles for spending on your card is important, but when it comes time to redeem those rewards, it’s just as important to make sure you’re getting the highest value possible. Once again, the frequent traveler wins with either card.

While the Capital One Venture Rewards card earns 2 miles per dollar spent on all purchases, each point is worth 1 cent toward travel at redemption time. Chase Sapphire Preferred points are worth 1.25 cents each when redeemed for travel.

Both cards allow you to maximize your points and miles by transferring these rewards to a long list of airline partners. It is possible to far exceed 1 or 1.25 cents per point/mile when utilizing this redemption option.

The Sapphire Preferred also allows you to transfer points to the Marriott Bonvoy, World of Hyatt, and IHG Rewards hotel programs.

Redemption OptionSapphire Preferred (Ultimate Rewards Points)Venture Rewards (Capital One Miles)
Redeem for Travel
  • YES
  • 1.25 cents per point toward travel in the Ultimate Rewards travel portal
  • YES
  • 1 cent per mile to erase previous travel purchases or book travel through the Capital One Rewards Center
Transfer Points/Miles to Airline Partners
  • YES
  • YES
Transfer Points/Miles to Hotel Partners
  • YES
  • NO
Redeem for Gift Cards and Merchandise
  • YES
  • YES
Redeem for Cash or Cash Toward Statement Credit
  • YES
  • 1 cent per point
  • YES
  • .5 cents per mile

Hot Tip: For creative ideas on how to redeem your Ultimate Rewards points for maximum value and get the most value for your Capital One Venture Miles, check out our in-depth guides. 

Luxury Hotel Collection Resort
Enjoy cardholder perks at all Visa Signature Luxury Hotel Collection properties. Image Credit: Luxury Hotel Collection

Hotel Program Benefits

While each of our featured cards has unique hotel benefits, they have something in common too: both cards are Visa Signature branded cards, meaning either will give you access to the Visa Signature Luxury Hotel Collection.

You can expect to receive the following benefits with this program:

  • Best rate guarantee
  • Automatic room upgrade when available
  • Continental breakfast (or better) daily for 2 people
  • $25 food or beverage credit for each stay
  • Late check-out when requested (if available)
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • VIP guest status

You must book your room through the program and use your Sapphire Preferred or Venture Rewards Visa Signature card to pay.

Chase Sapphire Preferred

The Chase Sapphire Preferred provides access to The Luxury Hotel and Resorts Collection. There are over 900 worldwide properties in the collection, and cardholders receive special amenities when staying at these hotels.

Benefits include:

  • Breakfast each day of your stay for 2 guests
  • Free internet
  • Upgraded room when available
  • A special local amenity
  • Access to early check-in and late check-out

You must use your Sapphire Preferred card to pay for your reservation and book through the hotel program website.

Capital One Venture Rewards

The Capital One Venture Rewards card partners with Hotels.com to provide elevated earnings on hotels booked through the website, as well as the ability to earn free nights.

In addition to earning 10 miles per dollar spent, cardholders can take advantage of the Hotels.com rewards program, which grants a free 1-night stay after staying a total of 10 nights.

Hotels must be booked at hotels.com/venture and paid for using the Capital One Venture Rewards card. Note that this 10X earnings on hotels is a temporary incentive that is valid through January 2020.

Bottom Line: While you won’t find complimentary hotel elite status with these cards, the Sapphire Preferred offers its cardholders access and perks with a luxury hotel program, and the Venture Rewards card offers a unique 10X earnings incentive. Both cards also offer cardholders access to the Visa Signature Luxury Hotel Collection. 

Annual Fees and Adding Additional Users

Annual Fees

When it comes to annual fees, both the Sapphire Preferred and the Venture Rewards are on the same page, charging $95 annually.

However, the Capital One Venture Rewards card waives its annual fee in the first year.

Adding Additional Users

There is no charge to add additional authorized users to either the Chase Sapphire Preferred card or the Capital One Venture Rewards card.

All authorized user charges are the responsibility of the primary cardholder, but these additional purchases also earn rewards on the primary cardholder’s account.

Statement Credits

Chase Sapphire Preferred

The Chase Sapphire Preferred card does not offer any statement credits for specific purchases.

Capital One Venture Rewards

Silvercar
Have peace of mind knowing there’s help available if things go wrong during your trip. Image Credit: Silvercar.com

Travel Benefits and Protections

While you might not select a travel rewards credit card based solely on its ancillary travel benefits, there’s value to be found in these complimentary perks. Let’s take a look at how our selected cards compare when it comes to travel benefits and protections.

Car Rental Loss and Damage Insurance

There are similarities between the car rental insurance coverage on these cards. Both cards require that you reserve and pay for the rental car with your card and decline the rental car agency’s collision loss damage waiver (CDW or LDW) in order for coverage to be valid.

Both cards offer coverage for the primary cardholder and any driver listed on the rental agreement.

Coverage provided on both cards includes damage to or theft of the rental car, loss of use charges imposed by the rental company, and reasonable towing charges.

You’ll also find that some types of vehicles — such as commercial vehicles, exotic vehicles, and large passenger vans — are excluded on both plans.

When we compare coverage further, however, we do find differences between the 2 cards.

Chase Sapphire Preferred

The Chase Sapphire Preferred card is known for having one of the best car rental insurance benefits of any travel rewards card. The coverage is complimentary and available worldwide.

For any rental period 31 days or less, you’ll receive primary rental car coverage for damage, theft, and loss of use. Primary coverage (as opposed to secondary coverage) means you won’t have to file a claim with your other auto insurance before the card’s coverage kicks in.

Capital One Venture Rewards

Rental car insurance is also provided worldwide with the Venture Rewards card. However, within your country of residence, coverage is secondary to any auto insurance you have currently. Coverage is also limited to a period not exceeding 15 consecutive rental days.

Outside your country of residence, the coverage is primary and does not require you to file a claim with another insurance company first. Coverage is also expanded to include rentals up to 31 days in length.

Always read the terms and conditions and call the benefits administrator with any questions before you rent a vehicle.

Bottom Line: Both the Chase Sapphire Preferred and Capital One Venture Rewards cards offer primary rental car insurance outside your country of residence. The Sapphire Preferred extends this primary coverage worldwide, including your country of residence, while the Venture Rewards card does not. 

Trip Interruption/Cancellation/Delay

The travel protections and benefits that come with your credit card can’t replace a comprehensive travel insurance policy.

However, complimentary trip interruption, cancellation, and delay benefits can replace some of those hard-earned travel dollars should you experience a covered loss during your travels.

Chase Sapphire Preferred

Use your Chase Sapphire Preferred or the associated Ultimate Rewards points to pay for at least a portion of your trip, and you’ll receive trip interruption, trip cancellation, and trip delay benefits.

If your trip is disrupted by illness, weather, or another covered event, you could receive up to $10,000 per claim (up to $20,000 per trip) for pre-paid expenses lost. The maximum for a 12-month period is $40,000.

Your immediate family members will also be covered, even if you are not accompanying them on their trip. You’ll also receive trip delay coverage that provides up to $500 per person per trip when a covered delay disrupts your travels for more than 12 hours.

Capital One Venture Rewards

The Capital One Venture Rewards card does not come with trip interruption, cancellation, or delay benefits.

Lost and Delayed Baggage Coverage

Chase Sapphire Preferred

Pay for even a portion of your trip with your card or Ultimate Rewards points, and you can receive up to $500 per trip when your baggage is delayed for more than 6 hours. Baggage that is lost or damaged is also covered up to $3,000 per person per trip.

Capital One Venture Rewards

Receive up to $3,000 ($2,000 for New York residents) if your luggage is lost. You must have paid for your entire trip with your card.

Bottom Line: The Chase Sapphire Preferred offers superior travel benefits, including primary worldwide rental car insurance, trip interruption/cancellation/delay coverage, and lost/stolen/damaged baggage coverage.

car breakdown
Having access to roadside assistance when things go wrong is definitely valuable.

Roadside Assistance Service

With complimentary roadside dispatch service, cardholders of both the Sapphire Preferred and Venture Rewards cards receive access to a dedicated phone number to use in case of a roadside emergency.

There is no cost for using roadside dispatch service, and the service call is charged at a pre-negotiated flat fee (currently $59.95). For this flat fee, cardholders can receive the following services:

  • Towing (5 miles at no charge)
  • Flat tire changing with an inflated spare
  • Jumpstart service
  • Lockout service
  • Free fuel delivery up to 5 gallons (cost of fuel not included)
  • Standard winching

Emergency Travel Assistance

Both the Sapphire Preferred and Venture Rewards cards come with emergency travel assistance services. This can help with accessing local emergency and assistance resources 24/7 during your travels.

You’ll receive help with legal or medical referrals, emergency transportation, translation services, trip assistance and more. Cardholders are responsible for the cost of the actual services provided, but the referral service is complimentary.

Travel Accident Insurance

Chase Sapphire Preferred

The Sapphire Preferred has 2 different accident insurance benefits. First, on a common carrier, you could receive up to $500,000 for loss of life or serious injury.

Another benefit offers up to $100,000 for severe injury or death when not on a common carrier.

Capital One Venture Rewards

A benefit of up to $250,000 is provided for accidental loss of life, limb, sight, speech, or hearing when traveling on a common carrier. The fare must have been paid in full with your Venture Rewards card.

Hot Tip: If you’re looking for other cards, explore the best cards to offer Travel Accident Insurance

Concierge and Travel Assistance

Since both the Chase Sapphire Preferred and Capital One Venture Rewards cards are Visa Signature cards, you will have access to the Visa Signature Concierge 24/7 dedicated phone line.

The concierge can assist with securing event tickets, making dinner reservations, helping purchase a special gift, or even making travel arrangements.

Macys Shopping
Use your card to purchase a qualifying item and receive shopping benefits and protections. Image Credit: Macy’s

Shopping Benefits and Protections

We all use our credit cards to shop. Fortunately, when you use your card to make a purchase, you may find additional value in the benefits and protections that come complimentary with your card.

You may be able to earn additional rewards for your shopping purchases, or even seen compensation if your purchase becomes damaged or the product fails to perform as designed.

Let’s review how these cards compare in shopping benefits and protections.

Earn Bonus Rewards for Shopping

Chase Sapphire Preferred

Earn up to 20 additional Ultimate Rewards points per dollar spent when you purchase through the Chase Ultimate Rewards shopping portal. Just log in to your account via Chase.com/ultimaterewards and select the store at which you’d like to shop.

Sample retailers include Sears, Macy’s, Walmart, JCPenney, Staples, and more.

Points you earn from shopping through the Ultimate Rewards portal are in addition to any rewards you would already be earning on the card.

Capital One Venture Rewards

While the Capital One Venture Rewards card does not have a dedicated shopping portal, this card will still earn 2 miles per dollar spent on every purchase.

Purchase Protection

Both the Sapphire Preferred and Venture Rewards cards provide purchase protection coverage for damage or theft of eligible items purchased with your card.

Coverage limits on both cards provide $500 per claim for a maximum of $50,000 per cardholder account.

The Sapphire Preferred card provides coverage for the first 120 days from the purchase date, while the Venture Rewards card provides its purchase security coverage for just 90 days.

Extended Warranty

Original manufacturer’s warranties expire way too quickly, so it’s great to have an extended plan. Fortunately, both cards we’re comparing are Visa Signature cards and offer the same extended warranty benefit.

Qualifying items purchased in full with your Chase Sapphire or Venture Rewards card will have the manufacturer’s warranty extended by 1 year.

For example, if you have a manufacturer’s warranty of 3 years, you would receive an additional year of warranty with your card for 4 in total. This benefit applies to products with manufacturer’s warranties of 3 years or less.

Both the cardholder and gift recipients of eligible items are covered.

No Foreign Transaction Fees

Both cards are great to carry in your wallet when you travel, as neither charges foreign transaction fees.

Final Thoughts

When we compare these 2 cards, we find a lot of similarities. For example, both cards have strong earnings on travel and dining.

The Venture Rewards card, however, has an edge when it comes to everyday spending since it earns 2 miles per dollar on every purchase (vs. just 1 point with the Sapphire Preferred). The Venture Rewards also earns 10X miles at hotels.com/venture.

At redemption time, you have flexible options with both cards, but overall more value with the Sapphire Preferred — including 1.25 cents per point for travel, 1 cent per point for any statement credit (not just travel like the Venture Rewards card), and the option to transfer to airline and hotel partners.

As for benefits, you can’t beat the Sapphire Preferred’s rental car and travel insurance coverages.

The Venture Rewards card does waive the annual fee in the first year, giving you a free opportunity to try out the card and see if it works for you. It’s also worth noting that Capital One pulls from all 3 credit bureaus when you submit an application.

Before applying, we suggest using the Card Match Tool or Capital One Pre-approval to see if you have offers available.

When it comes down to it, the best card for you will be the one that matches your spending mix, allows you to redeem rewards for travel goals that are important to you, and comes with benefits you can actually use.


FAQ

Which card is better, the Chase Sapphire Preferred or the Capital One Venture Rewards card?

The Chase Sapphire Preferred is highly recommended as a great first-time travel rewards card because it earns valuable Ultimate Rewards points that can be redeemed for good value, and it comes with a long list of travel benefits. If you’re a frequent traveler, this card should be a primary consideration.

That said, the Capital One Venture Rewards card competes very well: you’ll earn flexible rewards that can also be redeemed for travel, and it comes with similar travel benefits.

If your spending is not focused on travel and dining, however, the Capital One Venture card with its 2X earning on every purchase may be a better match (vs. the Sapphire Preferred’s 1X earnings on purchases other than travel/dining).

How do Capital One miles work?

First, Capital One miles are not frequent flyer miles and cannot be used to book airline tickets directly. They are really just points that can be redeemed in several different ways.

When you make a purchase, you earn 2 miles (points) per dollar spent. These points are deposited into your Capital One account when your statement closes each month and are then available for redemption.

You can use the miles (points) as a statement credit to wipe out previous travel purchases, redeem for travel in the Capital One portal, transfer your miles to one of several travel partners, purchase gift cards, get cash-back, and more.

How do Ultimate Rewards work?

Ultimate Rewards are earned on several Chase credit cards. You earn at least 1 point per dollar spent, and there are bonus categories where you can earn multiple points per dollar spent.

Ultimate Rewards points can be transferred between accounts to maximize the increased redemption value that comes with premium Chase Ultimate Rewards-earning travel rewards cards, such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card (1.25 cents per point) and the Chase Sapphire Reserve® (1.5 cents per point).

In addition to using points to purchase travel in the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, you can transfer Ultimate Rewards to airline and hotel partners for potentially greater value.

Points can also be redeemed for statement credits at the rate of 1 cent each, used for purchasing from retailers, buying experiences, purchasing gift cards, and more.

How does adding an authorized user work?

Both the Sapphire Preferred and the Venture Rewards card allow you to add authorized users to your card for no extra charge.

The authorized user must be added by the primary cardholder. The additional user will receive their own card with their name embossed on it, but the primary cardholder will be responsible for any charges the authorized user makes.

The rewards earned on purchases made by authorized users are deposited into the primary cardholder’s account.

Christine Krzyszton

About Christine Krzyszton

Christine, who lives in Northern Michigan, travels about 300,000 miles a year despite her remote location. Her expertise is traveling the world on a weekend with no pre-determined destination in mind, letting the cost of the airfare determine where she will go. She has over four million flown miles and elite status on all three major domestic carriers.

Advertisement

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Bonus Valuation*: $1,150+

Why We Like It: This card is our #1 recommended rewards card (especially for those getting into points and miles) because it’s easy to earn points, they’re extremely valuable and the bonus is worth $1,150 in our valuations!

*Our bonus valuation is calculated internally by experts at Upgraded Points, not the card issuer. See our latest valuations here.

  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees

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