Why Clark Howard added this new credit card to his wallet in 2022


Money expert Clark Howard has a new credit card in his wallet for 2022.

Thanks to a welcome bonus offer he couldn’t resist, Clark made the new Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card the latest addition to its stable of credit cards.

It’s her first credit card from Capital One and she joins five other credit cards in her portfolio, including the popular Citi Double Cash.

I spoke with Clark to understand why he added the card to his wallet and to get more information to help you decide if it would be wise to follow his lead.

Why Clark signed up for the Capital One Venture X Rewards credit card

The new Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card is a travel credit card with a steep annual fee. In fact, with a price tag of $395 per year, some of you might have done a double take when I revealed that Clark had agreed to pay for this card.

Clark admits it’s not his “normal thing”, but he says he did his homework on the card before capitalizing on a generous 100,000 mile welcome bonus promotion.

“It was one that I really noodled and noodled before deciding I was going to get it,” Clark says. “The sign-up bonus was so compelling I had to do it.”

To secure those bonus miles, which are worth at least $1,000 (and likely more depending on how you redeem them) on the Capital One Travel Portal, Clark will have to spend $10,000 during the first six months of membership in the card. He says he plans to do this with travel bookings, which also earn him 10x miles on hotels and car rentals as well as 5x miles on flights.

To note: Capital One says the 100,000 mile welcome bonus is a limited time offer that will only be valid for new applicants until March 14, 2022.

Those of you who have followed Clark’s credit card advice over the years know that he doesn’t like to make a long-term credit card decision based solely on short-term gain with welcome bonus.

But as an avid traveler with many upcoming trips on his itinerary, Clark says a handful of the travel benefits this card offers will quickly offset the annual fee each year.

Clark says he’s already taken advantage of the card refund for his Global Entry subscription, and he’ll take advantage of a $300 annual Capital One Travel credit and a $200 vacation rental credit to recoup the cost of annual fees (and more).

Next, let’s take a closer look at what Clark gets with this card.

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card: The Basics

Capital One Venture X

Annual fees: $395

The Venture X has an annual fee of $395 and does not offer a promotional period of 0% APR on new purchases or balance transfers.

However, it has a welcome bonus worth at least $1,000 and some renewable cardholder perks that can be worth $400 every year. You’ll also get 10,000 bonus miles each year on your cardholder’s birthday.

Structure of rewards

Capital One rewards spending with this card through the accumulation of miles. You can earn these miles on everyday purchases, but the obvious benefit is spending on travel-related purchases.

Expenditure category Miles multiplier
Hotels and rental cars 10x
Flights booked through Capital One Travel 5x
All other purchases 2x

Redemption of rewards

You can redeem your rewards earned with this card through the Capital One Travel Portal.

But you don’t have to book travel directly through Capital One as your only means of redemption.

Capital One says: “Customers can use miles to book through Capital One Travel, they can transfer miles to 15 leading travel loyalty programs, or they can redeem rewards for any recent travel purchase, including on purchases such as vacation rentals, flights, hotels, carpools, cruises, etc.

Other benefits to consider

  • Unlimited access to the Capital One lounge at participating airports. This includes two free guests with each visit.
  • Free Priority Pass membership, which gives you free access to 1,300 lounges.
  • TSA Precheck or Global Entry membership fees are covered up to $100.
  • There are no foreign transaction fees on purchases.
  • Cell phone protection is included, up to $800, if you pay your wireless bill with the card.

You can read our full review of this card here.

Should you follow Clark’s lead and request this card?

If you’ve made it to this point in the article, you’re probably wondering if you should join Clark in taking the plunge with this new premium travel card from Capital One.

The answer is: maybe — if you travel often.

Clark says this card is just a “situational player” in his travel-booking wallet. He also says that cards with this type of annual fee are dangerous for people who aren’t serious travelers, as they might not get what they pay for.

“For people who aren’t regular travelers, they’re probably thinking, ‘What kind of idiot would ever pay that annual fee?'” Clark explains. “But what they’re doing with this card is giving back benefits that cover expenses every year for people who travel a lot.”

Conclusion: This card is Capital One’s first major step into the premium travel card market. It is intended to compete with American Express’ Platinum Card® and Chase Sapphire Reserve, which offer high benefit packages at even higher annual fees. Although this card offers a cheaper annual fee, you might want to skip it if you’re not the type of traveler who would see obvious benefits in the perks and perks offered.

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