Coming Soon – 100,000 Miles Capital One Venture Reward

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Thanks to a reader tip, we know that the Capital One 100,000 point Match My Miles promotion will be back in a few days.  Last year Capital One, which typically is very stingy  (10,000 points. Seriously?) with the sign-up bonuses had a very lucrative promotion.

You could match up to 100,000 miles in your existing frequent flyer account with Capital One’s Venture Miles.  Each Capital One Venture mile could be redeemed for 1 cent towards any type of travel (cruises, taxes, car rentals etc.) or $1,800 worth of Hyatt gift certificates.

I signed up for the personal card and received 100,000 Venture miles after matching those miles to my American Airlines account (most of those miles were earned from Citi credit card sign-up bonuses).  I redeemed these for $1,800 worth of Hyatt certificates and  treated my dad at the Grand Hyatt in Bangkok.

Is Capital One Crazy?

But why on earth did Capital One let you match miles in your frequent flyer account with their Venture Miles which can usually be earned only by actually spending money on their credit card (remember they are stingy with sign-up bonuses)?

I suspect that Capital One’s intention was to match miles earned from credit card spending only because they wanted to attract high spending new customers.

After all, why should Capital One match the miles of someone who flies a lot and has a lot of miles in their frequent flier account (but who may may not spend heavily on a credit card)?

In fact, the marketing copy from last year’s offer read (bolding mine):

Now it’s time to show us your current hard-to-use airline credit card miles so we can match them with easy-to-use Venture miles!

The very clear intent of the Match My Miles promotion was for Capital One to acquire new customers who had lots of airline miles earned via credit card spending.

But here’s where things broke down.

Capital One allowed folks to submit their airline frequent flyer statements as proof of miles earned from credit card spending.  I suspect that Capital One didn’t think through the logistics of how to verify miles earned from credit card spending only and used airline frequent flyer statements as a very imprecise proxy of miles earned from credit cards.

So this was a jackpot for many of us.

Is this year different?

Capital One is a very well run bank known for using a lot of analytical tools (in an industry which uses a lot of analytical tools).  You can be rest assured that Capital One figured out that last year’s promotion may not have acquired the high-spending customer they were looking for.

Mommy Points and The Man of a Thousand Places have both written how this year’s Venture Reward promotion is different.

A few days ago, Capital One (perhaps inadvertently or just to get our blood pressure up) posted on the same website which was used last year to submit one’s frequent flyer statement to match miles:

Submit your 2011 year-end summary from your travel credit card

Clearly, Capital One is trying to run the promotion so that they match only miles earned from credit card spending (not miles earned from flying, other promotions etc.)

In effect, Capital One will give you 2 Venture miles for every $1 spent on another travel credit card, so you can get 100,000 Venture miles only if you’ve spent $50,000 on another travel credit card.  What’s unclear is if you can submit multiple year end statements from different credit cards.

The Capital One Get My Miles site now taunts us by saying:

This time, it’s different.

I haven’t spent $50,000 on a single credit card, and I suspect many other folks haven’t either.  I also suspect many folks aren’t too keen on uploading & sharing their year-end credit card statement with their spending history.  That’s assuming you know where your year-end statement is.

I completely understand why Capital One wants to match credit card spending only, but I’m hoping that they realize that not many folks will upload their year end summary and give us an alternative way to prove that we have lots of airline miles!

Bottom Line:  I’m hoping for a repeat of last year’s Match my Miles promotion, but I understand why Capital One would not want a repeat of that.  Let’s see what the next few days bring us.

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29 responses to “Coming Soon – 100,000 Miles Capital One Venture Reward

  1. Good info! Between personal and biz cards, claimed at least $2,700 in airfare redemption for trip to Iceland and Norway last summer. It was a sweet deal, though it did not allow partial redemption. So I really had to make it those my “main” cards for a while in anticipation of redeeming for travel purchases larger than my “miles” balance can accommodate . For example, my Venture “miles” balance must be at least 270,000 to redeem a $2.7K travel purchase. Good thing, “miles” were posted quickly!

    Switched personal into a no-fee cash rewards card already. Will do the same for biz today. I wonder if former Venture cardholders are be eligible for whatever new promo they have planned for the Venture card? Does Cap1 have a 1-card only “policy”? Might get wife on board if promo not to complicated.

  2. If they are looking for miles earned from credit card spend, then will the sign-up bonus achieved after pre-set spending count? I think they should, as these are the miles (although bonus) earned from credit card spending!! Time to take out statement for United 60K signup bonus… 😉

  3. Do you know how the $1800 in Hyatt gift certificates was calculated? When I look on the My Rewards website today, I only see a gift certificate of $500 in exchange for 50,000 points, which is not nearly as favorable.

  4. CanadianMillionMiler

    From the tip I first reported about the site here after being told (accidentally?) by Cap1 CSR about it, I think Cap1 is possibly reconsidering the way they want people to match miles by showing the spending from 2011. I speculate that after reading people’s responses to my posting on here and on Flyertalk about how many are going to find it hard to show the 50K spending from a single travel card, they might have taken that info off the site and have been taking some time to reconsider their strategy. I suppose we will have more details by tomorrow or so.


  5. You seem much more hopeful than I do Daraius. I personally hope you are right. I missed the promo last year and would love to get in this year, but I don’t have anywhere near 50K spend on one card (not even all of them combined). With the general three bureau pull Capital One does, I will be out unless its a 100K bonanza again. My FF accounts are purposely well positioned just in case!

  6. Daraius, how did you get $1800 in Hyatt GC’s for 100K points???

    • Cmoz – Last year was the 1st time Cap One had such a large sign-on bonus, so we’re still learning their rules. But I hope the promotion returns this year.

      @Vinay – I hope they see it that way.

      @Corky @ Jersey Guy |
      – Initially you could redeem ~50K points for $900 in Hyatt certificates, but they changed that redemption rate later on.

      @CanadianMillionMiler – I hope they reconsider how they will run the program, because I haven’t spent $50K on a credit card!

      @IPBrian – I’m hoping for the outcome which is most favorable to me. A repeat of last year would be nice!

  7. I already have the Cap One Venture card that I got in 2011. Does this promotion count towards existing customers or only new customers? If so, isn’t there a business Venture card I can apply for in order to get this promotion?

  8. Made off with $4500 last year between 4 cards, don’t think I’ll get to play this year.

  9. I think you’re right that they messed up last year and were targeting people who spent a lot on their mileage credit cards. However, it’s possible that another explanation is that they had a theory that frequent fliers were big spenders with low default rates. So, maybe they were interested in getting the data from people’s mileage accounts. They’ve been able to test over the last year whether holders of large mileage balances are low-default positive-NPV customers.

    The new promo might be different simply because they want new data to test. So, even if last year was not a mistake, they might change the target group. If you’re right about them looking for year-end statements, then they’d be able to see if big spenders on certain other types of cards (e.g. Amex PRG holders) are high NPV, or if spenders in certain categories (home improvement) have lower default rates, etc.

    Cap One is an interesting company.

  10. My question is whether the new promotion will be for first time cardholders only.

  11. I’ve got over 100k miles/points in a FF program AND a credit card rewards program. I could submit either, I just don’t want to send over an entire year’s worth of transaction history.

  12. Does anyone know if you can transfer SW Rapid Rewards to another RR account? I am new to the game and the only way I could get the full 100,000 points would be by combining my account with my husband’s.

  13. Jasmine, SW Air RR points can not be shared or transferred between other SW Air RR accounts, but in a few cases, you can transfer in miles from other loyalty programs, but usually with points loss. See

  14. I actually did spend $30K on my British Airways card. I got the card when it had the 100K promotion and decided to go for the companion ticket. I made the mistake of not understanding that I had to use the Companion pass to go to Europe and now debating what to do since I don’t really value Business class that highly since I wouldn’t normally buy it.

    Anyway… British airways gives 1.25 points per $1 spent… will Citi give me 2.5 or just 2 points? What do you think of the value of 60K citi points for use of hotel gift cards (or other no flight items) that will be used in Europe? I’m trying to go on a dream trip to Europe with my girlfriend. It will soften the blow of fuel charges if I can spend less on accommodations while in Europe. Thanks! Always love your posts!

  15. @ Jasmine

    you can NOT transfer RR points between RR members. The ONLY way to get transfers is from another program (i.e. Chase Ultimate Rewards) and transfer from the external program INTO the RR account.

    If you have some Chase UR pts, attempt to combine those into your SW account. Else this might be an offer you want to pass up (which I’m thinking I’ll pass on myself)

    • @Noah @FrequentFlyerPost– We don’t know until the promotion is announced in the next few days.

      – That’s quite the haul!

      @bluto – It is reasonable to conclude that folks with high airline mile balances could be high spenders/low default customers. I would love to see what their data tells them!

      @ Ken – I’d be uncomfortable sending 1 years spending patters as well.

      @Jasmine – Jason and Gabriel are spot-on. And I don’t recommend it because you’ll lose points in the process.

      – Even with ~$800 in fuel surcharges, it is still less than the price of a coach ticket to Europe and could be quite useful in a dream trip. I’m not sure how Capital One will run the promotion this year, so don’t have an answer for you.

      @Jason and @Gabriel – Thanks for helping out!

  16. Looks like the website is up.

    Unfortunately, at least for me, the FAQ and Rules sections are inaccessible.

    What I’d really like to know is how balance transfers fit into their matching…if those count as matchable spending, it’d potentially change the calculus quite a lot.


  17. CanadianMillionMiler

    Yep it’s up but it looks like this is a targetted promotion since you need a welcome email to get a passcode. Not sure if it’s a fixed passcode like a promo code for everyone, if it is I am sure someone on Flyertalk will post that soon

    • @reinharden @CanadianMillionMiler – We’ll know more soon (maybe even tomorrow). Last year, you applied for the card and received an email with a passcode after being approved. You then used that passcode to log into the website. I don’t think it is targeted. Thanks for the update!

  18. What if you already have a Capital One card (non Venture)?

  19. The new Venture promo is up on their website. It definitely feels underwhelming relative to the expectations. For most folks, the potential sign-up bonus would be measly compared to other current offerings – and may not even be worth sending your personal spending records to a competitor. This time I’ll probably say no to “Capital Zero”.

  20. Here’s the link-I’m out this time and my wife as well. Best of luck to those that can do it though-

  21. Mary Gradowitz

    Recently got chase united explorer 50k bonus after first purchase and trying to get “10,000 bonus miles” after $25k annual spend. So does that mean ill get$35k mikes after the spend? Looks like just is bouncing me around rather than answering directly so I thought you could help. Thanks!

  22. I opened up a venture card last year. I just called to cancel so I wouldn’t hit the annual fee. I was surprised how easy it was. They didn’t do anything to keep me as a customer.

    Anyone else have this experience? How about you Daraius?

    • @Rod – That shouldn’t make you ineligible for the offer.

      @Max @BothofUs2 – Thanks for sharing!

      @Mary Gradowitz – Yes, you should get 35,000 miles for spending $25,000 – 25,000 miles for the $25,000 in spending and an extra 10,000 miles for hitting the $25,000 threshold within a calendar year.

      @Steven – They didn’t try to retain me as well!

  23. Hey Darius,

    I got a question about the Capital One miles… I am looking at the rewards travel – trying to use those 100k miles… and they are crazy expensive in miles: a trip inside US – not 25k like the usual miles, but some weird equivalent of dollars – i.e. ticket worth 308$ equals 32k miles from Capital One. First class trip in US -77k!!!

    Am I missing something here or is it really not that good?
    Yes, it does earn you 2 miles per dollar, but those miles are less worthy, right?

    I’d love to hear your thoughts – how to use those… (I know I asked that question before, but then it was before I had the card and the account to look into).


    • @Alex – You can always buy the ticket from the airline/travel portal and then get a statement credit for the amount. For example, if you spend $100 on travel, you can get a statement credit for $100 for 10,000 Capital One points. I wouldn’t use Cap 1 points for 1st class travel within the US, but for car rentals, hotels, domestic flights, cruises, etc. Each point is worth 1 cent.

  24. looks like they are not it this year.