[UPDATE: Some offers mentioned below have expired. You can view the current offers from our partners once they become available here — Capital One Venture Rewards, Chase Freedom and Chase Sapphire Preferred. DISCLOSURE: Cards from our partners are mentioned below.]
Both the Capital One Venture Rewards card and the Chase Freedom card are major players in the rewards credit card space. They both offer cardholders value, but are also considerably different. The Capital One Venture card offers flexible rewards that can be used on travel, while the Chase Freedom card is primarily a cash-back card.
Comparing the Rewards Programs
When you sign up for the Chase Freedom card, you receive a $150 bonus after spending $500 in the first three months. You can also earn an additional $25 if you add an authorized user who makes a purchase within the same three-month period. Each quarter you can earn 5% cash back, on up to $1,500 within different rotating categories. One quarter the category could be gas stations and department stores while the next quarter it could be grocery stores and public transportation. All other purchases earn 1% back.
In contrast, you earn 40,000 miles after signing up and spending $3,000 in the first three months with the Capital One Venture Rewards card. You also receive an unlimited two miles per dollar on every purchase you make. There are no bonus categories to remember because you receive the same value on each purchase.
Redeeming Your Rewards
Redemptions can be done in a couple of ways when you have the Chase Freedom card. You can receive a statement credit or direct deposit into a checking or savings account. You can also use your rewards to shop on Amazon.com or to book travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. You can also redeem rewards for gift cards. Another popular option is to transfer rewards into Chase Ultimate Reward points. This can only be done if you also have another card that earns Ultimate Reward points, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred, Sapphire Reserve or a business card like the Ink Preferred. Once you have Ultimate Reward points, these can be transferred to different loyalty partners like Hyatt, United Airlines, Southwest Airlines and more. (You can read more about redeeming Chase Ultimate Rewards points here.)
Redeeming your miles from the Capital One Venture Rewards card is simple. Each mile you earn is worth one cent. That means the signup bonus would have a value of $400. The miles you earn can be cashed out as a statement credit toward any travel expense making this a really simple, straight-forward system.
Chase offers price protection, which will reimburse you if the price on an item you purchase decrease within 120 days. You also receive an extended warranty on your purchases from both cards.
Because the Capital One Venture Rewards card is a Visa Signature card, you also receive other benefits like car rental insurance, lost luggage reimbursement, and 24/7 concierge service both at home and when you are traveling. When you use your card to book hotel rooms, you can receive complimentary room upgrades and other hotel savings.
How the Fees Stack Up
One of the best parts of the Chase Freedom card is that you receive these rewards and benefits without paying an annual fee. The card also has an introductory 0% APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers. After the introductory period ends the rate changes to a variable 15.74% to 24.74%. If you plan on traveling outside of the United States, there will be a 3% foreign transaction fee.
With the Capital One Venture Rewards card, you will not pay an annual fee the first year. However, each subsequent year there will be a fee of $59. You also will not receive an introductory 0% APR period. The standard rate on purchases is a variable 13.74%, 18.74 or 23.74%, depending on creditworthiness. There are no foreign transaction fees.
Why You Might Choose the Chase Freedom Card
The Chase Freedom card has been one of the best cash-back cards for a long time. Earning up to 5% back is an attractive feature. Because there is some work involved, this card is perfect for anyone that doesn’t mind keeping track of bonus categories. Chase also requires cardholders to opt into the bonus categories each quarter, which means you need be proactive. However, if you are looking for a card that offers generous cash back and no annual fee, you can’t go wrong with the Chase Freedom card.
Why You Might Choose the Capital One Venture Rewards Card
Anyone looking for a travel rewards credit card, but doesn’t have the time or desire to keep track of spending within categories, will love the Capital One Venture Reward card. Not only will you earn a generous signup bonus, but you also earn flat rate rewards on every purchase. It can’t get much simpler. Though you will have an annual fee of $59 after the first year, the card is perfect for anyone who travels internationally because there are no foreign transaction fees.
Before You Apply …
Regardless of the card you choose, be sure to check your credit before applying. You may be rejected if your credit scores aren’t good enough for you to qualify. You can get two free credit scores and a credit snapshot at Credit.com to keep track of how you’re doing.
At publishing time, the Chase Freedom card and Capital One Venture Rewards card are offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com is compensated if our users apply and ultimately sign up for this card. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment. This content is not provided by the card issuer(s). Any opinions expressed are those of Credit.com alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the issuer(s).
Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees and terms with credit card issuers, banks or other financial institutions directly.