In December 2018, Capital One introduced a transferrable points currency for their Venture and Spark products, which was an exciting development.
The Venture and Spark cards were previously useful for earning rewards that could be redeemed as cash towards a travel purchase, though the miles can now be transferred to airlines as well.
What has impressed me is that they’ve kept adding partners and have also offered transfer bonuses. By adding two hotel transfer partners and improving the transfer ratio for one airline partner they’ve made the program all the more compelling.
Capital One adds two hotel transfer partners
As of Tuesday, February 4, 2020, Capital One added two hotel transfer partners for their Spark and Venture miles products, which are their first hotel transfer partners. Specifically, you’re able to:
- Transfer Capital One miles to Accor Live Limitless (ALL) at a 2:1 ratio
- Transfer Capital One miles to Wyndham Rewards at a 2:1.5 ratio
Capital One is the first major US transferrable points program to partner with Accor and Wyndham.
Transferring Capital One miles to Accor
Capital One Spark and Venture miles are transferrable to Accor’s loyalty program at a 2:1 ratio. Accor has 34 popular hotel brands, like SLS, Fairmont, Sofitel, Delano, Mondrian, and Raffles.
Accor largely has a revenue based loyalty program. The way it works, 2,000 Accor points can be redeemed for 40EUR (~44USD) off a hotel stay.
Given the transfer ratio, that means that 4,000 Capital One miles can get you 40EUR off a hotel stay. That’s about ~1.1 cents (USD) per Capital One mile, which is excellent.
Premium Capital One cards earn 2x miles per dollar spent, meaning you could be earning 2.2 cents towards Accor stays per dollar spent.
Transferring Capital One miles to Wyndham
Capital One Spark and Venture miles are transferrable to Wyndham’s loyalty program at a 2:1.5 ratio. Wyndham is the world’s largest hotel franchising company, and they have a portfolio of 20 hotel brands, including Wyndham Grand, Trademark Collection by Wyndham, La Quinta, Tryp by Wyndham, and more.
Wyndham has three tiers of award pricing:
- 7,500 Wyndham Rewards points per night (10,000 Capital One miles)
- 15,000 Wyndham Rewards points per night (20,000 Capital One miles)
- 30,000 Wyndham Rewards points per night (40,000 Capital One miles)
There are some situations where people may come out ahead with these redemptions, though that doesn’t strike me as being particularly exciting.
Capital One improves JetBlue transfer ratio
In May 2019, Capital One added JetBlue as a transfer partner. However, at the time the transfer ratio was 2,000:1,000. This has been improved.
As of February 4, 2020, Capital One miles are transferrable to JetBlue at a 2:1.5 ratio. As a reminder, JetBlue has a revenue based frequent flyer program, and each point can generally be redeemed for ~1.4 cents towards the cost of a JetBlue ticket, give or take. That definitely makes this a more lucrative redemption opportunity.
Best credit cards for earning Capital One miles
There are two best credit cards for earning Capital One miles:
- The Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card is the best personal credit card; it offers 2x Venture miles per dollar spent, has a reasonable $95 annual fee that’s waived for the first year, and offers some other great perks that make the card worthwhile
- The Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business is the best business credit card; it offers 2x Spark miles per dollar spent, has a reasonable $95 annual fee that’s waived for the first year, and offers some other great perks that make the card worthwhile
I give Capital One huge credit for the way they’ve developed their transferrable points currency, particularly when you consider the newness of the program.
Obviously Capital One has faced some challenges, since presumably Amex and Chase have exclusive agreements for some of the travel providers with which they have co-branded cards.
Despite that, Capital One is adding unique transfer partners that we haven’t seen from Amex, Chase, or Citi.
The Accor transfer opportunity strikes me as a great deal, while the Wyndham opportunity is definitely more niche. On top of that, the improved transfer ratio to JetBlue is appreciated.
Could you see yourself taking advantage of any of these new Capital One opportunities?