Spark® Miles from Capital One® Business Review – 2019

Spark Miles Capital One

The Spark® Miles card from Capital One® allows businesses to earn travel miles while purchasing the goods and services they already buy. Benefits include:

  • Unlimited travel mile earning potential at a rate of 2X purchase
  • Travel miles from every business purchase, with no restrictive categories
  • No seat restrictions on flights booked when redeeming miles
  • No minimum to redeem points
  • A highly competitive introductory offer
  • No foreign transaction fees

The Spark Miles card comes with an annual fee of $95, waived for the first year.

This card comes with a purchase rate of 19.24% variable APR.

Who is the Spark® Miles card right for?

This card is best for small businesses with a range of expenses in other spending areas but who still spend money on travel, even only occasionally.

This is because cardholders get travel mile rewards on all their spending (not just travel), so can gain from all their regular small business spending throughout the year – such as office supplies, software, or shipping – and use it to offset the high cost of occasional business trips.

For example, an employee with a side hustle like a side business selling jeans online could use the Spark® Miles card to buy her computer, pay for the eCommerce platform, and buy inventory.

Having used her card to get 2X miles on every purchase, she could then redeem them and cover the cost of a trip to vet a new supplier and check the quality of their products without incurring a large additional cost.

For such a business, this is better than many travel-focussed credit cards, which tend to prioritize certain purchase categories like travel to offset the cost of further travel, because cardholders can earn travel miles without having to travel often.

Of course, other cards may be suitable for other small business types. A rundown of popular business credit cards is available here.

Are there introductory rates and rewards?

For the first six months, small businesses can get up to 200,000 extra miles:

  • 50,000 miles after spending $5,000 in the first three months
  • 150,000 miles when they spend $50,000 during the first six months of having the account

These miles are in addition to the points normally accrued, which means that if they just met these spending minimums to get the introductory rewards, they’d earn 300,000 travel miles in just six months total.

That works out to a current valuation of roughly $4,200, making this an extremely generous introductory reward system.

The annual fee of $95 is also waived for the first year.

How many miles do I get?

There’s no upper limit on the number of miles that can be earned, and the lack of spending categories means businesses with regular expenses in different areas have serious reward earning potential.

It’s common for card companies to offer one point per dollar of regular spending, so 2X miles on every purchase – whether for office rent, inventory, or kitchen equipment – makes the Spark® Miles card an attractive option.

Miles can be redeemed by transferring them to any of twelve airline travel partners or booking through Capital One.

What are the other travel benefits of the Spark® Miles card?

Although the travel miles rewards are generous, the Spark® Miles card also features:

  • An Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver to protect against the cost of damage or theft when renting an eligible vehicle.
  • Travel and emergency assistance from Visa, like ticket replacement, or legal and medical referrals
  • No foreign transaction fees

This list of travel benefits is short compared to rival travel-focusses business cards like the Business Platinum® Card from American Express.

The Business Platinum® Card comes with a range of other benefits not available with this card, like Fee Credit for Global Entry ($100) or TSA Pre✔™, access to thousands of airline lounges, and travel accident insurance.

However, the Spark® Miles card is also easier to get, allows balances to be carried from month to month, and has a drastically lower annual fee ($95 versus $450).

What are the cash back terms like?

The Spark® Miles card used travel miles as its reward system and doesn’t currently offer cash back.

What other benefits come with this card?

With the Spark® Miles card, holders also get access to:

  • Free employee cards
  • Transfer miles to over ten different travel partners
  • Quarterly and yearly summary (customized and itemized) – useful to simplify planning, budgeting, and taxes
  • Easy purchase record downloads into several widely used formats, including Quicken®, Quickbooks™, and Excel®.
  • Account management from a mobile device or web browser
  • Purchase security and extended protection

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