The Platinum Card® from American Express
has long been regarded as one of the most rewarding travel cards on the market, in part because of its generous benefits and valuable transfer partners. Along with a substantial welcome bonus, the card offers a vast range of statement credits and perks — including up to $200 in annual airline fee credit**, more airport lounge access options than any other card, complimentary elite status with Hilton and Marriott**, and up to $200 in Uber credits** every year.
These premium benefits don’t come cheap — the Platinum Card charges a whopping $695 annual fee (See rates). Many cardholders are able to get much more than that in value each year, but if you’re not able to maximize the benefits, paying $695 for a card won’t be worth it.
But there’s now a premium credit card that offers many of the same perks for a much lower annual fee. The new Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card also offers a big welcome bonus, travel statement credits, and airport lounge access — with a $395 annual fee that’s much more manageable and easier to justify.
If you’re a frequent traveler looking for a card that offers premium benefits and top-notch travel and purchase coverage, either of these cards would be a good fit. Besides the difference in annual fees, there are other factors to consider before you decide which card is best for you. Here’s what to know to help you make that decision.
Comparison: Capital One Venture X vs Amex Platinum
*Note: Starting January 1, 2021, the 5x points will apply up to $500,000 on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel per calendar year
***Eligible digital subscriptions include Audible, SiriusXM, The New York Times, and Peacock
16.99% – 23.99% Variable
100,000 bonus miles when you spend $10,000 on purchases in the first 6 months from account opening
Both the Platinum Card and Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card offer six-figure welcome bonuses, plus new cardholder perks for a limited time.
The Platinum Card welcome offer is 100,000 Membership Rewards points after you spend $6,000 in your first 6 months of card membership, plus 10x points on eligible purchases on the Card at restaurants worldwide and when you Shop Small in the U.S., on up to $25,000 in combined purchases, during your first 6 months of card membership. Potentially, if you max out the $25,000 spending limit to earn at restaurants and Shop Small businesses in the US in the first six months, you could earn an additional 250,000 points on top of the 100,000-point intro bonus.
Read more: Capital One Venture X card review
Meanwhile, the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card comes with a welcome bonus of 100,000 bonus miles when you spend $10,000 on purchases in the first 6 months from account opening. Plus, new cardholders can receive up to $200 in statement credits for vacation rental purchases (like Airbnb and VRBO) in the first 12 months of account opening.
While both intro bonuses look similar on the surface, it’s important to remember that the value of Capital One miles and Amex Membership Rewards points vary depending on how you redeem your rewards. Keep in mind, too, that the minimum spending requirement to unlock the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card’s bonus is a full $4,000 more than that of the Platinum Card, although the spending timeframe is the same.
Overall, you can get more potential value from the Platinum Card bonus — but only if you spend a lot in the 10x limited-time categories over the first six months. If your spending doesn’t match these categories but you can use a statement credit for vacation rentals, the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card bonus is likely a better deal for you — as long as you can meet the substantial minimum spending requirement.
Ongoing rewards earning
In addition to the new cardholder 10x bonus categories, the Platinum Card earns bonus points on certain travel purchases. Cardholders earn 5x points on airfare purchased directly through the airline, and on flights and hotels booked through Amex Travel (5x points on flights booked directly with airlines or with Amex Travel applies to up to $500,000 per calendar year). Otherwise, the card earns 1 point per dollar on all other eligible purchases.
Read more: Amex Platinum card review
Similarly, you’ll earn bonus miles for some purchases made with the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card — 10x miles on car rentals and hotels booked through Capital One Travel, and 5x on flights booked the same way. All other eligible purchases earn 2 miles per dollar.
Overall, you have the potential to earn more rewards on non-bonus category spending with the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card, at 2 miles per dollar versus 1 point per dollar with the Platinum Card. And for hotels and car rentals booked through Capital One, it’s hard to beat earning 10x miles.
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100,000 Membership Rewards points after you spend $6,000 in your first 6 months of card membership, plus 10x points on eligible purchases on the Card at restaurants worldwide and when you Shop Small in the U.S., on up to $25,000 in combined purchases, during your first 6 months of card membership
The Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card offers a straightforward annual travel credit — each year, cardholders receive up to $300 in statement credits toward flight, hotel, or car rental purchases made through Capital One Travel. While booking through Capital One Travel means you may not earn hotel or car rental points (or have your loyalty status recognized), it should be fairly easy for most folks to maximize this credit.
Read more: Cards like the Amex Platinum and Chase Sapphire Reserve offer annual credits for travel that can offset their high annual fees. Here’s what you need to know.
The Platinum Card offers more opportunities to earn statement credits for travel-related purchases, but it’s a little more complicated. You can get:
Read more: My plan to maximize the Amex Platinum card’s new $200 hotel credit for a nearly free luxury stay
By dollar value alone, the Platinum Card comes out ahead — as long as you’re able to maximize the credits. For example, the airline fee credit doesn’t cover airfare — only extras like bag fees or seat selection fees — so if you don’t incur any of these additional charges when you travel, your benefit may go unused.
Global Entry/TSA PreCheck credit
Both the Platinum Card and Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card offer a statement credit toward the Global Entry ($100) or TSA PreCheck ($85) application fee. These trusted traveler programs are worth having if you’re a frequent flyer, because they can save you a lot of time waiting in line at the airport.
Read more: The best credit cards for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck
There’s one minor difference between the two cards. On the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card, you’ll receive a credit for either program’s application fee once every four years. With the Platinum Card, the credit is available every four years for Global Entry, but 4.5 years for TSA PreCheck.
The Platinum Card has added retail credits in the past couple of years, most recently adding new “lifestyle” benefits like digital entertainment and Equinox credits. Here’s the full list:
Read more: Don’t let the Amex Platinum’s new ‘lifestyle’ benefits distract you from its true value — here’s what the card is worth to the average person
Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card cardholders receive a 10,000-mile bonus each year on their account anniversary. Capital One miles are worth 1 cent each when you redeem them toward travel purchases (and potentially more when you transfer to partners), so this bonus is worth at least $100 in travel.
The Platinum Card doesn’t offer an anniversary points bonus.
Airport lounge access
The Platinum Card offers the widest airport lounge access of any premium card. You’ll get access to Amex’s proprietary Centurion Lounges (with two free guests allowed until February 1, 2023), as well as a range of other lounge options around the world. These include:
Read more: The best airport lounges you can access with the Amex Platinum card
The Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card also offers Priority Pass airport lounge membership, and the access it offers is actually slightly better than membership that comes with the Platinum Card.
With the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card Priority Pass membership, you and up to two guests can access lounges and receive credits at participating airport restaurants that are part of the Priority Pass network. Amex cards removed airport restaurant credits from its Priority Pass access in 2019, so if this perk is important to you, the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card has an advantage.
That said, the only other lounges you can access with the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card are Capital One’s new airport lounges, the first of which recently opened at Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW), with a second lounge in Denver (DEN) opening in 2022.
Read more: I used a credit perk to dine for nearly free at an airport restaurant and it’s my new favorite travel hack
The Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card is the clear winner in terms of authorized user access and benefits. You can add authorized users to the card at no cost, and they get many of the same top perks as the primary cardholder, including:
- Priority Pass and Capital One airport lounge access (cardholder and up to two guests)
- Hertz President’s Circle elite status
- Cell phone protection
Read more: The 3 best credit cards for adding someone as an authorized user — so they can build credit and get benefits like airport lounge access
The Platinum Card also offers benefits to authorized users, including airport lounge access, Global Entry/TSA PreCheck credit, and hotel elite status, but it’s not free. Amex charges $175 to add up to three authorized users, then $175 per card after that (See Rates).
Travel and purchase protections
The Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card is a Visa Infinite card, which means it comes with excellent travel and purchase protections, including primary car rental insurance, trip cancellation/interruption insurance, and trip delay insurance.
As Amex’s premium consumer card, the Platinum Card also offers great coverage. One advantage of the Platinum Card is emergency medical transportation assistance offered by its Premium Global Assist Hotline, which you won’t find on the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card.
Read more: The best credit cards with travel insurance
However, keep in mind the Platinum Card only offers secondary car rental insurance (with the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card, it’s primary insurance) and doesn’t come with travel accident insurance.
Keep in mind there are restrictions and exclusions for each of the benefits below — be sure to read the Capital One Venture X benefits guide and benefits guides for the Amex Platinum for important terms.
Hotel and rental car elite status
The Platinum Card offers complimentary elite status with several hotel chains and car rental agencies. These elite tiers come with perks that can get you upgrades and a better travel experience:
You won’t get hotel elite status with the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card, but it does offer complimentary Hertz President’s Circle elite status, which comes with perks like guaranteed upgrades, skip the counter and e-return, a free additional driver, and more.
Although you’ll get far more benefits and statement credits with the Platinum Card, they don’t come cheap — the card charges $695 per year. That said, if you can make the most of its core benefits, it’s possible to get a value worth much more than the annual fee.
Read more: 5 luxury credit cards with high annual fees that more than pay for themselves
The Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card is comparatively inexpensive at $395 per year. That’s not a small sum, but if you know you’ll use the $300 in Capital One Travel credit each year, the fee is effectively only $95 — and you can knock that out by redeeming your 10,000-mile anniversary bonus for $100 in travel.
The Platinum Card® from American Express has a definite advantage in the sheer number of benefits it offers, including various travel and retail statement credits and unmatched airport lounge access. For these perks, though, you’ll pay a steep price — $695 a year, compared to $395 on the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card.
The Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card doesn’t offer the array of credits the Platinum Card does, but its key benefits — a $300 annual travel credit, 10,000-mile anniversary bonus, and Priority Pass airport lounge access — are enough to easily offset the annual fee cost.
Read more: Capital One Venture X vs Chase Sapphire Reserve: Which premium rewards credit card is best for you?
Both cards offer excellent travel and purchase protection and a wide range of redemption options. The right card for you really depends on how much you’ll use the benefits, and, in the case of the Platinum Card, whether or not the extra perks are worth an additional $300 per year.
Good to Excellent
3 free nights (each valued up to 50,000 points) after qualifying purchases and 10x total points on eligible purchases in select categories
Good to Excellent
$200 after spending $500 on purchases in the first three months from account opening
Good to Excellent