Barclay Arrival Plus and The Capital One Venture Card (Updated)
***Capital One Venture Card 70K Bonus offer is no longer available. Current public offer is 50K for new cardholders. The following review is based on equal bonus offers. For this reason, the Barclay Arrival Plus Card currently provides the better bonus offer. Additional updates will be provided as public offers for these cards change.***
Credit Card enthusiasts are on high alert as some of the best sign up bonuses we have ever seen are all coming at once. Two of the most exciting offers are the Capital One Venture Card and the Barclay Arrival Plus Card. Everyone is talking about these two credit cards as they have both unveiled their biggest sign up bonuses to date. Currently new cardholders who are approved for these cards are eligible for a 70,000 mile bonus (Arrival Plus) and a 75,000 mile bonus (Venture).
We will explore a full comparison of the Capital One Venture Card and Arrival Plus by MasterCard. However, you are only interested knowing which card wins this epic showdown, let’s go ahead and end the suspense. Both of these cards should be considered for any traveler looking to open a new credit account. The two credit cards match each other stride for stride in terms of sign up bonus, special card features, and reward mile accumulation. Many savvy travelers will likely be signing up for both of these credit cards. Consumers may split their spending accordingly in order to take advantage of these huge sign up offers.
Credit Card bonuses are awesome opportunities to earn free rewards and travel. Before diving in to the details of these two credit cards, let’s reiterate one key aspect to being a successful credit card user – NEVER CARRY A CREDIT CARD BALANCE TO CHASE A BONUS! Following this simple rule will ensure you do not fall victim to the allure of the credit card bonus.
When Credit Card Companies Compete, Do We Win?
There are two big things credit card fans immediately notice when reviewing these two offers. First, both of these sign up bonuses are the biggest bonuses we have seen publicly offered for The Arrival Plus Card and The Venture Card. Some targeted offers this large may have been available for select consumers in the past. However, these bigger offers are currently available more regularly to all consumers. Second, the spending requirement for each bonus is $5,000 in the first 90 days of opening your new account. Many potential applicants are cheering at the first point. With that said, may become hesitant after seeing the large spending requirement necessary to receive their bonus. Fear not, we will review some great tips below on how to make sure you complete your required spending without breaking your budget!
****REMEMBER, NEVER SPEND FOR THE SAKE OF SPENDING JUST TO MEET A BONUS REQUIREMENT****
It is unlikely a coincidence that these two offers have been released at the same time. These credit cards are competitors. Therefore, it stands to reason that these big bonus offers are direct responses to one another. Competition between credit card companies to win new business is what is currently driving these big sign up bonuses that are becoming more common. This is great news for credit card seekers.
Venture Card vs Arrival Plus – Reviewing The Bonuses
As discussed above, the sign up bonuses for the Venture Card and Arrival Plus Card are very similar offers. New cardholders are eligible to receive 70,000 Bonus Miles when they are approved and complete the sign up bonus for the Barclay Arrival Plus Card. Customers who opt for the Capital One Venture Card will receive an equally impressive 75,000 Bonus Miles upon completing the sign up bonus.
The spending requirements are identical. Customers must complete $5,000 in new spending on their credit card within 90 days or they will not be eligible to receive their new member bonus. Anyone who has ever missed out on a credit card sign up bonus knows that this it is a nightmare scenario. Here are a few tips to make sure you are able to meet the spending requirements:
- Transfer your automatic bill payments over to your new credit card
- Use your credit card for all day to day purchases such as food, gas, and groceries
- Check to see if you can pay large bills like rent payments with your credit card (make sure no fee applies, first)
- Open your credit card when you know you will be making a large pre-planned purchase (such as furniture or appliances)
- With the holidays approaching, be sure to buy any gifts with your credit card
- Make a plan of your monthly spending to determine if you can meet the requirement
Venture Card vs Arrival Plus – Reviewing Card Features
Both The Arrival Plus and Venture Card are top tier travel credit cards and you will find that many of their features are very similar. For starters, both of these credit cards offer unlimited 2x Miles on all purchases. Reward earning structure is the biggest consideration when selecting a new card. Both of these cards excel in this respect. Customers earn 2x miles for each dollar spent on their card and there is not an annual limit on the maximum allowed rewards. Other similarities between the two credit cards include the following:
- Miles do not expire as long as you maintain your account
- Both cards charge no foreign transaction fee when using your card overseas
- Both cards are chip enabled and provide purchase liability protection
The Venture One and The Arrival Plus card both have an annual fee ($95 and $89 respectively – annual fee waived for the first year). While both credit cards provide many of the same features there are some subtle differences between the two credit card offers that may be the deciding factor for many people.
Both credit card interest rates (APR) are variable and will be based on consumer credit worthiness. The Venture Card offers variable rates from 15.24% – 25.24%. The Arrival Plus offers variable rates of 18.24%, 22.24% or 25.24% based on your creditworthiness. While the lower end of the Venture Card is slightly better than the Arrival Plus card, your individual rate will be based on your overall credit history. Furthermore, we encourage consumers to avoid carrying a balance so that interest is not charged to your credit card balance.
Winning Aspects For the Venture Card by Capital One
- Cardholders are eligible to receive $100 statement credit for TSA Precheck or Global Entry
- Venture One customers will enjoy 10x points with thousands of partner hotels (Hotels.com/Venture)
- Cardholders receive an extra 5,000 bonus miles once completing the sign up bonus
The three points above are all very attractive features of the Venture Card. Overall, the difference in the initial sign up bonus is somewhat negligible in the long run. With that said, the TSA Precheck and Global Entry statement credit is going to be viewed as an awesome perk for any travel lover.
Winning Aspects For the Arrival Plus Card by Barclay
- New accounts are eligible to receive 0% intro rate on balance transfers for 12 months
- Customers will receive 5% back each time they redeem their miles for travel
- Cardholders will incur a slightly lower annual fee at $89 (Waived first year)
These three features are great. However, only one of these differences really sets the card apart and that is the 5% back when redeeming your miles. Additionally, if you happen to be transferring a balance, then this is also a great deal as well. Overall, the annual fee difference is quite negligible.
Final Thoughts – Which Card Wins – The Venture Card or The Arrival Plus Card?
As stated at the beginning of this review, there is no clear cut winner in this competition. Consumers should take note that both Barclay and Capital One are more picky than some credit card issuers when approving applications. If you have applied for a large number of credit cards in the past two years (anything more than 5 cards in 24 months could be a red flag for companies) your approval odds may be lowered.
Overall, do not spend too much time sweating over which card to go with as they are both excellent cards for travelers. If you are needing a balance transfer then the 0% interest rate provided for transfers with the Arrival Plus MasterCard is the choice. If you love to skip airport lines, then the $100 statement credit for TSA Precheck with the Venture Card is the option for you. Either way, you are going to find yourself jet setting around the globe no matter which way your go!
One Last “Crazy” Idea – Should I Get BOTH Credit Cards?
Both of the bonus offers provide about $700 in travel rewards after you complete the sign up bonus. This is going to leave many people thinking why not get both? Well, the short answer is that this is a perfectly reasonable option. If you are looking to get two new credit cards AND you love to travel, splitting your spending between these two cards is not a crazy idea. With that said, here are a few considerations before pulling the trigger and applying for both cards:
- Both cards require a $5,000 initial spend for a total of $10,000 if you get both credit cards
- Two new accounts will be added to your credit history in a very short period of time
- Payments will need to be made in full each month to avoid interest on your balance
There are many people who are going to be tempted to get both of these credit cards. If you are in the unique position where you do not mind having two new accounts on your credit report then this isn’t an issue. You will also need to be able to afford to pay off both balances in full. Finally, you will also need to be able to meet both spending requirements.