Edited by: Jessica Merritt
& Juan Ruiz
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First-time credit card applicants may be drawn to credit card issuer Capital One due to the wide variety of cards the company offers, the simplicity of the card structures, and the fact that the issuer has a card option for every credit rating.
For our comparison today, we’ve selected 2 of the most popular mid-tier Capital One cards. These cards are designed for consumers with excellent credit who want to earn rewards on every purchase they make.
However, that’s where the similarity ends when comparing the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card and the Capital One Savor Rewards Credit Card. Each of our featured cards has its own earning and redemption structure, and as a result, one could prove to be a better fit depending on your spending mix and redemption priorities.
Join us as we dig deeper into the attributes of these 2 Capital One cards and compare how the cards earn rewards, your options at redemption time, and the benefits you can expect to receive on each card.
Before we dive into the details of our 2 featured cards, we’ll compare them side-by-side to help you sort out the best features and benefits of both cards.
Here’s how the Capital One Venture card (issued as a Visa Signature card) compares overall to the Capital One Savor card (issued as a World Elite Mastercard):
|Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
|Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card
|Earn 75,000 miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
|Earn $300 after spending $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
|Travel Benefits and Protections
|Shopping Benefits and Protections
|$95 (rates & fees)
Get 2x miles plus some of the most flexible redemptions offered by a travel credit card!
The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is one of the most popular rewards cards on the market. It’s perfect for anyone in search of a great welcome offer, high rewards rates, and flexible redemption options.
Frequent travelers with excellent credit may benefit from this credit card that offers a lot of bells and whistles. And it offers easy-to-understand rewards earning and redemption.
An excellent cash-back card that offers rewards for categories like dining, entertainment, popular streaming services, and grocery stores. (Information collected independently. Not reviewed by Capital One.)
When it comes to rewards credit cards, you can break up most savvy consumers into 2 camps: those who prefer travel rewards and those who prefer cash-back.
Both options can be very lucrative to you and your wallet, especially if you’re using the right card. For those who fall in the “cash is king” camp, you’ll likely find the Capital One Savor card quite compelling.
You’ll have a unique opportunity after card approval to secure an initial welcome bonus worth hundreds of dollars with either of our featured cards.
The Capital One Venture card has a generous bonus after completing the minimum spending requirements in the first 3 months after card approval. We value Capital One miles around 1.8 cents each, but at redemption time they could be worth more if you utilize the option to transfer miles to travel partners. We’ll elaborate on this option shortly.
The Capital One Savor card offers a cash-back bonus after completing spending requirements in the first 3 months after card approval.
Welcome offers do change, so be sure to confirm the current offer before submitting an application. We’ve provided a snapshot above of the current offers for each of our featured cards.
Every purchase you make with either of our featured cards will earn rewards. Let’s take a closer look at how the cards differ when it comes to the level of rewards you’ll earn on each purchase.
|Capital One Venture Card
|Capital One Savor Card
If you spend a lot on dining, entertainment, streaming services, and at grocery stores, you’ll likely come out ahead with the Capital One Savor card. If your spending mix is mostly in categories other than those bonus categories, the Capital One Venture card may be the better earning card for your situation.
For example, if you spent $20,000 each year in 4% cash-back categories on the Capital One Savor card, you would earn $800 in cash-back, but only $720 worth of Capital One miles on the Capital One Venture card (using a value of 1.8 cents per mile).
If, however, your greatest spending is at gas stations, on school tuition, or other non-bonus categories, you may fare better with the Capital One Venture card at 2x miles per dollar spent on those (and all other purchases) versus 1% cash-back on the Capital One Savor card.
When it comes time to redeem your hard-earned rewards, you’ll want to select an option that delivers the best value and matches your preferences. Here are the choices for redeeming rewards earned on our featured cards, in order of the best potential value:
|Capital One Venture Card
|Capital One Savor Card
If you want to redeem your rewards for travel, the Capital One Venture card would be the better card option as you have several choices to receive 1 cent in value, or better, for each mile redeemed. You may also receive greater value when transferring miles to travel partners, a travel redemption option you won’t have with the Capital One Savor card.
Both of our featured cards come with useful travel benefits and protections. But because the cards are issued by different networks, coverages will vary depending on whether your card is a Mastercard or Visa. Fortunately, you’ll enjoy worldwide acceptance with either card.
Here is an overview of the travel benefits and protections you can expect with both cards:
The Capital One Savor card has this additional benefit:
Hot Tip: Keep in mind that most of these benefits, although not marketed on Capital One’s website, are available to you by virtue of the Capital One Savor card’s status as a World Mastercard or World Elite Mastercard and the Capital One Venture card’s status as a Visa Signature card.
This is just an overview of some of the key travel benefits and protections and not an all-inclusive list. The actual benefit and protection descriptions, limits, terms, and conditions will be spelled out in each card’s Guide to Benefits.
Shopping benefits and protections can save you money or provide coverage should you experience a covered loss to an eligible item purchased with your card. Here are some of the coverages you can expect to find on our featured cards.
Additionally, the Capital One Savor card comes with price protection coverage:
It’s recommended that you have an excellent credit score (generally 740 to 850) to qualify for either of our featured cards. Capital One defines excellent as “have never declared bankruptcy or defaulted on a loan, not been more than 60 days late on any credit card, loan, or medical bill in the last year, and have had a loan or credit card for 3 years or more with a credit limit above $5,000.”
Fortunately, you can find out in advance if you may be targeted for a Capital One credit card offer by utilizing the CardMatch tool. This risk-free tool is easy to use, requires minimal information, and there’s no hard inquiry done on your credit report. You’ll know immediately if you have card offers available to you.
Capital One also offers its own risk-free inquiry tool, but it does require you to submit a lot more information.
These pre-qualification tools do not guarantee that you will be approved for a card but do give you an idea of which cards you’re likely to be approved for.
Prior to applying for any card, you’ll want to obtain a (free) copy of your credit report to find out where you stand and to check it for any potential errors.
You may also find value in reviewing this article on the pre-qualification process and how to find card offers.
You’ll generally need excellent credit to qualify for either of our featured cards. With excellent credit, you’ll be in a position to have choices when it comes to rewards-earning cards.
While either of our featured cards may be a good choice for your situation, here are 2 additional recommended rewards cards, for comparison, that require excellent credit.
A fantastic travel card with a huge welcome offer, good benefits, and perks for a moderate annual fee.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred® card is one of the best travel rewards cards on the market. Its bonus categories include travel, dining, online grocery purchases, and streaming services, which gives you the opportunity to earn lots of bonus points on these purchases.
Additionally, it offers flexible point redemption options, no foreign transaction fees, and excellent travel insurance coverage including primary car rental insurance. With benefits like these, it’s easy to see why this card is an excellent choice for any traveler.
We like that the Chase Sapphire Preferred card comes with a generous welcome bonus and that the card earns valuable and flexible Ultimate Rewards points. Additionally, when you redeem points for travel via the Chase travel portal, your points will be worth 25% more. You can also transfer points to the Chase airline and hotel transfer partners for even greater potential value.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred card is also one of the best cards for travel benefits including primary car rental insurance, trip cancellation and interruption, luggage insurance, and more. Read more about the associated travel insurance benefits of the card.
This is the best card for food lovers who dine out at restaurants (worldwide), order take-out and want big rewards at U.S. supermarkets!
If you're approved and accept this Card, your credit score may be impacted.
The American Express® Gold Card is a game-changer.
With this card, you can earn 4x Membership Rewards points at restaurants and you’ll also earn 4x Membership Rewards points at U.S. supermarkets on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1x.
There isn’t another card on the market that offers a 1-2 punch like this. Of course, there are several other benefits of the Gold Card as well, including extra monthly dining rewards and more.
If your spending centers more around everyday purchases such as those made at U.S. supermarkets or at restaurants (plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.), you’ll find rewards will add up quickly with the Amex Gold card.
This dual-purpose card is also great for earning Amex Membership Rewards points on travel purchases. Membership Rewards points, in turn, can be redeemed for travel or transferred to airline or hotel partners for the possibility of greater value.
Hot Tip: Learn more about these 2 popular cards in our detailed comparison of the Chase Sapphire Preferred card and the Amex Gold card.
If you travel and prefer a card that earns rewards you can redeem for travel purchases, the Capital One Venture card may be the better choice of our 2 featured cards.
The Capital One Savor card, however, is an excellent everyday spending card that helps you earn cash-back quickly. If you spend a lot in everyday categories such as dining out, groceries, entertainment, and streaming services, you could fare better with this card.
The better of the 2 cards for you will, of course, depend on your spending mix, redemption preferences, and which benefits you will be able to utilize.
If you own a business, regardless of size, you may also want to explore some of the best business cards Capital One has to offer.
For Capital One products listed on this page, some of the above benefits are provided by Visa® or Mastercard® and may vary by product. See the respective Guide to Benefits for details, as terms and exclusions apply.
The information regarding the Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
For rates and fees of the American Express® Gold Card, click here.
The better card for you will depend on your spending mix. If you spend a lot on dining, entertainment, streaming services, and at grocery stores, the Capital One Savor card could offer higher earnings.
If your greatest spending is in other categories and you want a good-value redemption option for travel, the Capital One Venture card could be the better choice.
Regardless of which card you select, you’ll have worldwide acceptance with Visa and Mastercard networks.
The Capital One Venture card is a Visa Signature card and therefore comes with several Visa Signature benefits such as car rental insurance, Luxury Hotel Collection benefits, and more.
The better rewards structure for you will depend on your redemption preferences.
Cash-back rewards are simple to redeem and it is possible to receive 1 cent in value for 1 cent in rewards earned. Some redemption options for your cash-back will yield less than 1 cent in value.
Capital One miles may have greater potential value when transferred to frequent flyer programs and used to purchase award ticket flights. There are several travel redemption options for your miles that yield 1 cent per mile or greater.
If you travel, you may want to earn and redeem miles. If you rarely travel, you may prefer cash-back.
Capital One miles are not frequent flyer miles and cannot be redeemed directly with an airline for flights. Capital One miles are more like flexible points that can be transferred to airline and hotel partner loyalty programs and then redeemed for award flights or hotel nights.
You also have the option to purchase travel using your Capital One miles via Capital One Travel.
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UP's Bonus Valuation
This bonus value is an estimated valuation calculated by UP after analyzing redemption options, transfer partners, award availability and how much UP would pay to buy these points.