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Capital One Go Miles Visa Card Review

Picture of Item Reviewed

Editor's Rating:
Intro Purchase APR Regular APR Intro Balance Transfer Annual Fee Credit Needed
N.A. $19 Good
  • Use any travel agent
  • Annual fee
Executive Summary - Though this card has been discontinued, it started the trend of allowing cardholders to book their travel with anyone they wish and later claim a statement credit against points they have earned. In that sense, it was one of the pioneers for modern day reward cards. This card was later rebranded to the No Hassle Miles Card and then rebranded again to the present day Venture Rewards Card.

Pioneer in modern day travel rewards? - These days, it is the standard practice that you can use reward points from credit cards to redeem for travel expenses that you book with "any travel agent". You just have to make a claim and a statement credit will apply to your next credit card statement. But back in the mid 2000s, that was not how reward programs worked.

The way it used to work was kind of like how frequent flier programs worked. You needed to earn 25,000 points to redeem for a domestic economy roundtrip flight within the Continental US (Hawaii and Alaska required slightly more points). You had to book with the credit card issuers reward program department and it came with restrictions like having blackout dates, booking 21 days in advance and having to stay a Saturday night stay. You were also unlikely to get a single stop flight.

First flexible rewards program? - The Capital One Go Miles was perhaps the first program that made it more convenient for consumers when it came to travel rewards redemption. Before we get to the exciting part, here is the run down on how you earn miles etc. You earn one mile for every dollar you spend. You can earn up to 8,000 miles a month or up to 50,000 miles in a calendar year. Miles are valid for 5 years. You also get a signing bonus of 5,000 miles.

With the Capital Go Miles Visa, you can buy your tickets from anyone, even online and discounted tickets and use your miles to redeem them. Your rebate payout turns out to be slightly higher than 1%. So if you manage to buy a cheap $100.00 ticket, all you need is 9,000. Furthermore, there is no seat restrictions and blackout dates. you can also earn cash rebates of 1% when you have accumulated 10,000 miles. You can also redeem miles for shopping merchandise and gift certificates. You can also donate miles to charity.

There is a small annual fee - The Capital One Go Miles Visa charges an annual fee of $19.00. The APR is also reasonable at Libor plus 8.74%. Bear in mind, that libor is lower than the Prime Rate.

A peek into what was to come - The Capital One Go miles visa essentially started a trend in credit card reward programs (for travel redemption) without really realizing it back then. Today, cards like the Blue Sky, Barclaycard Arrival World MasterCard all allow you to book your travel with any travel agent and just use your points to claim a statement credit.

The downside of this card was that it charged a small annual fee. But I guess they were entitled to since it was perhaps the first card with such features.

Design Change - The Go Miles Visa was discontinued and replaced by a slightly different card and reward program called the Capital One No Hassle Miles. That was eventually replaced by the Venture Rewards card in 2011.