Should You Redeem Capital One Credit Card Points for Cash?
If you have a Capital One rewards credit card, is getting cash back your best option? If you have a cash-back credit card, you have a few options besides getting cash back, but cash might be your best choice. If you have a travel rewards credit card, you can use your points for cash, but the points tend to be less valuable that way.
For many consumers, using their credit cards not only provides an opportunity to buy something on credit, make a purchase without cash on hand, or earn airline awards but also receive cash-back rewards. Getting cash back can make users feel like they’re getting free money or paying themselves back for a previous purchase.
Numerous credit card rewards programs offer cash-back opportunities (some easier than others) but a popular one is the Capital One card program. For this article, the Capital One Quicksilver is the focus, but the company has additional cards worth reviewing as other options.
Redeeming Capital One Rewards for Cash
For the Capital One Quicksilver Card, it starts with a 0% intro APR for 15 months and a 1.5 percent cash back on all card purchases. By spending $100 at the grocery store, the cardholder gets $1.50 back. By spending $20,000 on the card for a year, the cardholder can earn $300.
The Quicksilver Card also allows cardholders to earn a one-time $150 cash bonus once $500 has been spent on purchases within three months of opening the account.
To maximize the card’s cash back feature, you would have to use it everywhere and for everything. The cash back is paid to the cardholder the same way as the card doesn’t have bonus categories or special rates for cash-back rewards.
If a consumer prefers using one credit card, this may be the way to go. Just watch out for monthly interest fees (if you don’t pay your balance in full) or convenience charges, as they’ll essentially negate any cash back earned. Paying your balance in full each month will ensure you’re getting the most from your cash-back rewards.
Obtaining Cash-Back Rewards
When redeeming cash back, this can be done anytime and anywhere via the mobile app and online. Cardholders can sign into their accounts from either place and review their rewards history to see the accrued reward amount. Then, a redemption amount can be selected. Users have the option to set up a specific amount of cash back ahead of time that it will automatically pay back cardholders when the balance hits this amount.
Cardholders can receive their cash back as a credit on their account or by a check in the mail.
Available rewards can be redeemed any time if the account is in good standing and open. There isn’t a limit to the amount of rewards earned and they don’t expire.
Redeeming Capital One Rewards for Gift Cards
Capital One Rewards go beyond cash redemptions as users can purchase gift cards. By logging on to their accounts or through the app, users can choose the gift card option to use their cash-back rewards to purchase gift cards.
There is a selection of cards including retailers and restaurants that are available in different amounts—some are very specific. If a consumer has a $10 cash-back reward they might be able to get one gift card (say, for Starbucks) versus a $25 AMC card.
Be sure to read the details for the card amounts.
Redeeming Capital One Rewards for Charitable Donations
Cardholders can also use their cash rewards for charitable donations. To donate their cash back, they can be made directly to charities (such as the Red Cross at www.redcross.org) or to any 1.2 million+ other charities at www.networkforgood.org/donate.
Fees, terms, and conditions will apply to the donation.
In addition to cash back rewards, Capital One also has travel rewards cards, including the popular Capital One Venture card. The card enables users to trade miles for cash back; however, users only receive half the value by opting for the cash trade.
From the Capital One cash-back credit cards, the Quicksilver could be a great option. Excellent credit is required to obtain one but by paying it off monthly and avoiding interest charges, it can result in cash back and increased credit lines.
Regardless of cash back rewards or travel points, it’s an individual decision. When selecting a card, think about personal finance goals, review the restrictions, and be careful not to overspend and go into debt.
Author: Debbie Baratz
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