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They’re designed for people who don’t travel with one particular airline or stay at one particular hotel. Instead, they offer rewards for any purchases you make, including all kinds of travel-related expenses.
These cards are competitors but there are some important differences between them, including how they offer rewards and the extra benefits you’ll get. And you’ll need to use them differently because one has more fees than the other.
Neither one is a clear winner – instead, either of them could be right for you, depending on your particular travel habits. Keep reading to learn more!
You’ll get the most value from your points by redeeming them to pay for past travel expenses, where you’ll get 1 cent for every point you redeem. Only travel purchases made within the last 12 months are eligible.
You can also redeem your points for a check or a deposit into a Bank of America account, but you’ll be losing out if you do. When you redeem this way you’ll only get .006 cents for every point. This means 25,000 points would come to $150, instead of the $250 you’d get when you redeem for travel expenses.
You can redeem your miles for past travel expenses at a value of 1 cent per mile, or you can transfer them to a partner airline where they might be worth more.
The Venture Rewards card is a bit more rewarding on average, offering 2 miles per dollar compared to 1.5 points (whether you redeem for travel expenses or not).
But if you plan on using Bank of America’s Travel Center very often you can earn 3 points, giving the BankAmericard the edge when it comes to paying for travel. Check with Bank of America’s customer service for details about the Travel Center.
You’ll get a bigger bonus with the Venture card, twice as big as the BankAmericard: 40,000 miles ($400 in travel expenses) compared to 25,000 points ($250 in travel expenses). But you’ll need to spend 3 times as much in the same amount of time to get that bonus, so keep that in mind.
When it comes to redeeming your rewards these cards are about the same, giving you 1 cent per point (or mile) for travel expenses. You’ll also have the option to redeem for non-travel purchases with the BankAmericard, but that’s not a very good choice so it’s somewhat irrelevant.
If you have a checking or savings account with Bank of America, their card might be best for you because of that 10% bonus. That will add up to quite a lot over time, especially if you plan on using your card for years (and why wouldn’t you?).
Here are some of the most interesting and useful benefits from each card.
On point redemptions.
This card may come with additional Visa benefits. You’ll be provided with a full list of benefits available to you once you are approved for your card.
You will not be held responsible for unauthorized use of your card (contact customer service immediately).
Link a Bank of America account to your card and prevent declined purchases and return checks if you take out too much money from your account.
A 24/7 personal assistant to help in a variety of non-emergency tasks.
Pick your monthly due date.
Get benefits at over 900 hotel properties.
Special dining and wine experiences.
Access to popular sporting events and premiere golf benefits at Pebble Beach Resorts®.
Discounts and special offers at premium retailers, from jewelry to apparel and electronics.
Provides coverage against lost or stolen items within 90 days from the date of purchase.
Extends a manufacturer’s warranty at no charge for up to 1 year on warranties of 3 years or less.
Provides help with travel emergencies, including emergency card replacement or cash advances.
Covers you and your family in the case of physical accidents.
Assistance with services such as towing, changing a flat, or boosting a battery in case of emergency.
Provides coverage against theft and collision, as long as the car rental company’s own insurance is declined.
If checked or carry-on bags are lost or damaged, provides reimbursement up to $3,000 per passenger.
The Venture Rewards card obviously offers the better set of extra benefits, especially in the Perks section.
You’ll get discounts and upgrades at select hotels and venues, and access to exclusive experiences you wouldn’t otherwise be able to find. These are great features to have in a travel card that you’ll be bringing with you to see new places and do new things. There are also a variety of shopping and travel protections to get your back if you find yourself in some kind of trouble.
The BankAmericard’s benefits are very basic for the most part, but you might end up with some useful protections from Visa. With this card you’ll be approved for either a Visa Platinum or Visa Signature version, depending on your credit status. The Signature version comes with the better features. You’ll need to check your Guide to Benefits to learn the exact benefits that come with your card.
So, you may get some decent protections with the BankAmericard if you qualify for the Visa Signature, but you’re guaranteed to get some pretty great benefits with the Venture Rewards.
Insider Tip: Want to see the full set of benefits offered by each card?
Here’s a side-by-side comparison of the benefits offered by each card:
|BankAmericard Travel Rewards||Capital One Venture Rewards|
|Card||Annual Fee||Intro APR for Purchases||Regular Purchase and Balance Transfer APR||Cash Advance APR|
|BankAmericard Travel Rewards||$0||0% for 12 billing cycles||17.24%–25.24% Variable||See Terms|
|Venture Rewards||$0 intro for first year; $95 after that||None||17.24% - 24.49% Variable||24.49% Variable|
|Card||Balance Transfer Fee||Cash Advance Fee||Foreign Transaction Fee|
|BankAmericard Travel Rewards||3%, $10 minimum||See Terms||None|
|Venture Rewards||$0||3% of the amount of the cash advance, but not less than $10||None|
|Card||Penalty APR||Late Fee||Returned Payment Fee|
|BankAmericard Travel Rewards||Up to 29.99% Variable||Up to $39||Up to $28|
|Venture Rewards||None||Up to $39||None|
The BankAmericard has fewer fees, making it a bit cheaper to use overall.
You won’t have to pay an annual fee, and you’ll get 12 months at 0% APR for purchases. This makes it a good option if you want to pay off your upcoming vacation over time rather than all at once.
To pay for that annual fee on the Venture card, you’ll need to earn 5,900 miles. That means you have to spend $2,950 per year to break even on that fee, and anything you spend after that will be profit. But remember that you’ll also get those 40,000 bonus points in the beginning, which would pay for almost 7 years of fees.
Neither card has a foreign transaction fee, so you can use either of them outside the country without being charged extra.
The Venture Rewards card has no intro rate, so your purchases will start accruing interest that month. If you’re spending a lot on vacation or a long trip, this could add up to a lot.
Remember that you can completely avoid interest charges if you pay off your balance in full by the end of the billing period, with this and every other credit card.
They are pretty similar in many ways, but there are also some important differences. Both cards provide rewards for any purchase you make, though it’s not quite that simple.
Take a look at your spending and traveling habits, and begin with the annual fee.
Would you spend at least $2,950 with the Venture card per year to cover it? If not, think about if you’ll want to spend those bonus points on it. The BankAmericard has no annual fee to worry about, so if you don’t use the card much in a certain year it won’t cost you anything.
If you can use Bank of America’s Travel Center for most if not all of your travel needs, their card would provide the most rewards over time at the 3X rate. You’ll earn fewer points on other purchases, only 1.5 compared to 2 miles, but if you have an account with BofA you’ll also get that 10% bonus.
The Venture Rewards has much better extra benefits, some of which can help save on costs (though others are upgrades and extras you wouldn’t normally pay for, and those end up being expenses). So if those Perks really caught your eye, the BankAmericard can’t compete there.
One last thing to note: the Venture Rewards card is designed for people with excellent credit, while the BankAmericard is easier to get (it offers Visa Platinum for worse credit, and Visa Signature for better credit). You can always check to see if you’re prequalified for either of these cards before you apply, without hurting your credit score.
Want to apply for or learn more about one of these cards? Just click the card’s name below.
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