The Best Capital One Credit Cards of 2016

Oct 13, 2016 | Be First to Comment!

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As one of the country’s largest credit card issuers, Capital One® offers a wide variety of credit cards. They have features from cash rewards to miles and options for people with average or poor credit.

You may know of some of them through their catchy commercials with celebrities who praise their no hassle rewards and card benefits.

Of the many Capital One® credit cards that you can choose from, two of them provide some of the best features available.

The Best Credit Cards from Capital One

Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card

The Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card is one of our most popular travel rewards card. It offers 2 miles per dollar on every single purchase. Each mile can be redeemed as statement credit toward recent travel purchases. A mile is worth one cent.

This card is best for those who travel frequently, but aren’t loyal to any specific airline or hotel. You are welcome to hunt the cheapest travel options available. It comes with several handy benefits that can come in handy for travelers: no foreign transaction fees, personal concierge, and trip cancellation and interruption insurance.

The Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card provides simple and flexible travel rewards without an absurd annual fee. These are the reasons that it is one of our top travel credit cards.


  • Earn a decent amount of miles regardless of your spending habits
  • Your travel rewards are not limited to any specific airline or hotel
  • No foreign transaction fees


  • Annual fee is waived the first year but is $59
  • Miles worth less if redeemed toward non-travel purchases

Capital One® Secured MasterCard®

For consumers with poor credit or no credit, sometimes the only option you have to build your credit is with a secured card. The Capital One® Secured MasterCard® is one of the best choices.

It requires much less of a security deposit to begin building credit. With a deposit of $49, you’ll get a $200 starting credit limit. Normally, the credit line is equivalent to the security deposit. (To get a credit limit of higher than $200, however, you’ll need to increase the deposit.)

The low starting deposit means it is very easy for cash-strapped people to build their credit. As you use the card, you can increase your credit rating over time. If you make payments on time consistently, Capital One® could raise your credit limit without further deposits.


  • No annual fee
  • Start with a low cash deposit
  • Credit limit increases with good behavior


  • High APR

Other Capital One Credit Cards

Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card

Capital One® Quicksilver® gives a flat cash back rate on all spending. It’s best for those who prefer simple rewards instead of those that involve bonus categories. You can earn 1.5% cash back without worrying about purchase categories or other limitations. If your spending varies from month to month among different categories, Capital One® Quicksilver® is a better match for your spending habits.


  • Simple cash back program for all spenders
  • No annual fee


  • Other cards can offer slightly better cash rewards

Capital One® Quicksilver®One Cash Rewards Credit Card

Like the Quicksilver cash rewards card, the Capital One® Quicksilver®One Cash Rewards Credit Card awards cash back for your purchases. This card, however, is designed for those with “average” credit, which could be easier to qualify for if you have had credit problems in the past.

If you are in the process of rebuilding your credit, you may have a better chance of qualifying for this card than some of the other rewards cards on the market. Plus, you earn cash back on all your purchases without any special spending categories. Because of the annual fee, however, you should select the no-annual-fee version if you have a higher credit rating or your score falls into the excellent credit range.

Another neat feature of the card is the introductory period on balance transfers and balance transfers are free. This means that you can use it to consolidate high-interest debt.


  • 1.5% cash back on all purchases
  • Average credit scores qualify
  • Intro APR for balance transfers and no balance transfer fees


  • Annual fee of $39

Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card

This card is also a travel rewards card and is similar to the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card. If you travel less frequently and prefer a card without an annual fee, it could be a better option than the other version.

If you don’t travel frequently enough to justify paying the annual fee that comes with the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card, you can get many of the same benefits with this card without paying an annual fee.


  • Introductory sign-up bonus
  • Introductory APR period on purchases
  • No annual fee


  • Low rate of rewards of only 1.25 miles per dollar spent

Capital One® Platinum Credit Card

Many card issuers offer plain vanilla cards that focus on other benefits and opportunities rather than rewards. The Capital One® Platinum Credit Card is their basic credit card, designed for those with average credit ratings.

If you have had credit problems or you are beginning to build credit, it could be difficult qualifying for other cards. However, this card is designed for those with average credit so that you can build or rebuild your score over time. Because of the high APR, it is important that you pay your balance in full each month in order to avoid paying interest on your purchases.


  • Average credit scores qualify
  • Helps to build or rebuild credit without a security deposit
  • No annual fee


  • High variable APR

Journey℠ Student Rewards from Capital One®

College students who are just starting out in the world of credit can benefit from the Journey℠ Student Rewards from Capital One®.

This card is best for those who are college students and building their credit. You can earn as much as 1.25% cash back simply for using your card and making your payments on time. There is a high interest rate, which can be avoided if you pay your balance in full every month rather than carry it from month to month.


  • 1% cash back on all purchases up to 1.25% for each month you pay on time
  • No annual fee, balance transfer fee, or foreign transaction fee


  • High APR

Capital One Cash Back Credit Cards Cash Back
Capital One® Quicksilver® Rewards Earn 1.5% cash back on all spending.
Capital One® Quicksilver®One Rewards Earn 1.5% cash back on all spending, but there's an annual fee.
Credit Cards Travel
Capital One Venture Rewards Earn unlimited 2X miles per dollar on all purchases.
Capital One VentureOne Rewards Earn unlimited 1.25X miles per dollar on all purchases.
Credit Card Poor/Bad Credit
Capital One Platinum Designed for people without good credit to help rebuild credit with no annual fee or security deposit.
Capital One® Secured MasterCard® A secured credit card with an extremely low initial deposit requirement to help rebuild credit immediately.
Credit Cards Student
Capital One Journey Student Rewards Earn up to 1.25% cash back on all spending and get a higher credit limit with 5 consecutive on-time payments.

No Foreign Transaction Fees for All Cards

Most credit cards charge a foreign transaction fee when you use them internationally. It typically costs 3% of the purchase amount. For people travel outside of the U.S. often, this fee can add up to be quite expensive.

Luckily, Capital One does not charge foreign transaction fees on any of its credit cards. You can use your Capital One credit card internationally without worry of incurring this fee.

Free CreditWise Tool Helps You Track Your Credit

Capital One offers a free digital tool called CreditWise to help you monitor your credit. You have access to this tool with any of Capital One’s credit cards.

It pulls your credit reports from TransUnion, one of the three major U.S. credit bureaus. Using that data, it will provide a TransUnion VantageScore 3.0. It may not be the standard FICO credit score, but it is still useful for helping you track your credit.

You’ll also receive alerts when there is a change to your credit report. If you notice a big drop in your credit score, you can respond quickly to repair it. Or, see what kind of behavior that led to a rise in your score (so you can continue that behavior).

There is a credit simulator that allows you to see how you score will change depending on a certain action. For example, you can see how much your credit score will drop if you made a $1,000 credit card purchase.

CreditWise has its own mobile app for Android and iOS devices so that you can access it quickly on-the-go.

Capital One Mobile Apps Offer Easy Control of Credit Cards

Capital One’s mobile apps make it very easy for you to manage your credit cards. Like most banking apps, you can check your balance, recent activity, and make payments. One very convenient feature for Venture Rewards and VentureOne Rewards customers is the ability to redeem rewards right from the app.

Also, you can report fraud and lock your credit card directly through the mobile app. You don’t have to make that tedious call to customer service.

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