Last year, Capital One made a big move by launching their new and improved travel booking platform – providing another easy way for travelers to use Capital One Venture Miles.
In the Capital One Travel Portal, cardholders can book flights, hotels, and rental cars using cash or their Capital One Venture Miles. While you won't get a bonus redeeming your miles this way – every Venture Mile is worth one cent toward travel through the portal – Capital One has added a couple of novel features you won't find elsewhere that make it worth considering. Plus, it's powered by the popular app Hopper.
In this post, we'll walk through a step-by-step guide on how to use the Capital One Travel Portal.
Related reading: The Best Ways to Use Capital One Venture Miles
- How to Use the Capital One Travel Portal
- What Airlines Are Available Through the Capital One Travel Portal?
- Built-In Cancel for Any Reason Add-Ons
- Who Can Use the Capital One Travel Portal?
- Things to Know About Using Capital One's Travel Portal
How to Use the Capital One Travel Portal
First things first, to use Capital One Travel you need a card that earns Capital One's Venture Miles like the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card or the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card. From there, log into your Capital One account online and select “Explore Rewards.”
Once you click the “Redeem” button, you'll come to a hub to use your Capital One Venture Miles. To navigate to the Capital One Travel Portal, just select “Book a Trip.”
You'll then land on the Capital One Travel home page. From here, you will have the option at the top of the screen to search for flights, hotels, or car rentals.
Let's look at booking a flight. Right now, you'll have the option to book a one-way or round-trip flight. Capital One's Travel team shared with Thrifty Traveler that they plan to launch the ability to book multi-city flights, but a date for this new feature has not yet been announced.
In this case, we'll search between my home airport of Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) and Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW). Once you enter your departure and arrival airport information, you can start looking at potential travel dates.
Thanks to Capital One's partnership with Hopper, you'll easily be able to see the cheapest dates to fly. The calendar is divided into colors indicating certain price points: Green days will be cheaper, while red days are the most expensive.
Once you click the search button, the Capital One Travel portal will let you know that it is searching for flights. It also reminds you that if the portal recommends booking your trip now, you'll get free price drop protection – more on this in a bit.
Capital One Travel Portal Price Prediction
Once you get to the booking screen, you'll be presented with a lot of different information. First, you'll have the ability to filter by the number of stops, filter by the max price you want to pay, filter by airline, time, and even as specific as the flight number.
As you can see below, the nonstop Delta flight I am looking at is currently $199 round trip for a Delta basic economy fare – or $248 for the main cabin fare. But with Hopper integrated, I get a warning: It tells me I should wait on booking, suggesting the flights will get cheaper.
According to the portal, you can save an average of 15% on flights. And Capital One and Hopper say their price prediction tool recommends the best time to book with 95% confidence.
Capital One Travel will automatically refund you if the price of your flight drops after booking. But that is only available on flights where Capital One Travel and Hopper predict that prices won’t fall, and they’re capped on up to $50 – or 5,000 Venture Miles – in refunds total. Still, that’s a nice feature.
Since the portal is telling me to wait to book, you'll be able to set up an alert. Simply click “watch this trip” and you'll get to the screen below. Simply enter your email address and Capital One's Travel portal will notify you when it's the best time to book.
Capital One Travel Portal Price Watch
One thing to note about this feature is that it does not appear you can set up the price watch feature for a specific flight. Rather, you'll be able to set it up for a route with whatever filters you've set. In my example, there are five nonstop Delta flight options that day. The price alert will be monitoring all of these.
Capital One also offers a price-match guarantee. If you find a better price on your flights, hotel, or rental car within 24 hours of booking, you can submit a request with some details and get refunded the difference.
Freeze Your Flights, Too
Not ready to book yet? There’s the 24-hour rule, which guarantees a 24-hour window to cancel for a full refund when booking almost any flight. Capital One Travel has its own solution.
For a small fee, Capital One users can freeze the price of a flight. If prices increase on your frozen fare, you’ll pay the lower price you locked in earlier. If fares decrease, you’ll obviously pay the lower one.
You can freeze a fare for up to 14 days, which is incredibly generous.
Booking Through Capital One Travel Portal
When the time comes to book your travel through the Capital One Travel portal, you'll have the option to pay with cash or use your Venture Miles.
When you use Venture miles, they are worth one cent each towards travel. That means you can book that $199 flight for 19,880 Venture Miles.
But if you decide to pay with cash instead, you'll earn 5x miles per dollar spent on flights and 10x miles per dollar spent on hotels and rental cars if you have the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card. In this example, paying $199 would earn 995 Venture Miles.
If you have the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card, you'll earn 5x miles on hotels and rental cars.
What Airlines Are Available Through the Capital One Travel Portal?
Most airlines will be bookable through the Capital One Travel Portal. That includes the likes of Delta, United, American, Alaska, and most foreign carriers. Almost any fare you see through Google Flights should be available here in the Capital One Travel Portal.
And up until recently, JetBlue fares were not available either. But as of September 2022, JetBlue fares are now bookable through both Hopper and Capital One travel.
When it comes to low-cost carriers like Spirit, Sun Country, Frontier, and others it appears to be a mixed bag. I was able to pull up flights on certain routes, but not on others. Your experience may vary.
Finally, Southwest Airlines is also not available. But that comes as no surprise as Southwest flights are only bookable directly at Southwest's website.
Built-In Cancel for Any Reason Add-Ons
Travel insurance is not created equally. That $10 or $20 travel insurance policy airlines upsell you before checking out may not do you much good.
The rise of the COVID-19 pandemic also gave rise to the “cancel for any reason” policy, a safety valve that – you guessed it – allows you to cancel a trip for any reason. Typically, you’ll get just 75% or so of your costs back.
That’s why Capital One has built in a cancel for any reason option to travel bookings through Capital One Travel. For what the company described as “a small fee,” you can cancel a trip and get 80% of your expenses back. And you can cancel up to 24 hours before departure.
Expect the cost to vary depending on what you’re booking.
Who Can Use the Capital One Travel Portal?
Capital One's travel portal is available to most Capital One cardholders. That list includes the following:
- Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card, Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card, Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Credit Card,
- The Capital One Spark Miles for Business, Spark Miles Select, Spark Cash Select, Spark Classic, and Spark Cash Plus
- The Capital One Walmart Rewards Card
- Savor, SavorOne, SavorOne Student, SavorOne for Good Credit Journey
- Quicksilver, QuicksilverOne, Quicksilver for Good Credit, Quicksilver Student, Quicksilver Secured
But if you hold the Capital One Venture X Rewards Card, you'll receive an annual $300 credit to use on any booking made using Capital One Travel. It kicks in automatically and takes a huge chunk out of the card's $395 annual fee.
And if you as us, this $300 annual travel credit takes a huge chunk out of the card's annual fee and makes the fee more like $95 a year – so long as you use up the credit.
Click Here to learn more about the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card.
Click Here to learn more about current offers for the Capital One Venture Card.
Things to Know About Using Capital One's Travel Portal
1. Do the Math
With Capital One, you'll have three different ways to use Venture Miles. You'll be able to use them to remove almost any travel purchase, transfer them to hotel and airline travel partners, or use them through the Capital One travel portal.
Because of this, you'll want to compare your options when you are looking to make a booking. Is a flight more expensive through Capital One Travel than it is directly with the airline? It might make sense to book the flight directly with the airline, and then remove the purchase with Venture Miles later.
2. Take Advantage of Your Venture X $300 Annual Credit
If you hold the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card, you'll need to remember to use your $300 travel credit via Capital One Travel each and every year. It's the only Capital One card that offers any sort of incentive for booking in Capital One Travel and doing so will help you justify the card's $395 annual fee.
3. Will You Earn Airline Miles or Hotel Points When You Book Through Capital One Travel?
Generally speaking, when you book flights through Capital One Travel – or any online travel agency (OTA) you will still earn airline miles with whatever airline you are flying. You'll just need to make sure you associate your frequent flyer account number when you are booking.
With hotels, it is generally a different story. Bookings made through third parties like Capital One Travel will not earn points and oftentimes, if you have elite status benefits, they will not be recognized.
You may be able to call the hotel directly after making your booking to have these things added, but that is the exception. Not the rule.
4. They Plan to Introduce a Multi-City Booking Function Soon
When Capital One first launched the new Capital One Travel portal, they indicated that multi-city bookings would be available in Capital One travel “soon.” The bank had committed to adding this feature in early 2022, but as of publication, this feature is still not available and it is unclear when Capital One will add this feature.
The Capital One Travel Portal is just one of the many ways to use Capital One Venture Miles. The portal is powered by Hopper, which provides a lot of helpful analytics when looking to book flights.
We're normally quite skeptical of most travel portals and third-party online travel agency (OTA) sites – booking direct with your airline is almost always better. But Capital One Travel has done more than enough with this portal to give cardholders a reason to look and book travel there.