Jul 19, 2010

Capital One Aspire

Capital One Aspire  is the newest credit card in the market and is being supported by a big marketing campaign. Their main pitch is 2 for 1 in terms of points earned per dollar, which is not bad if you plan on redeeming for "small" awards or short-haul flights.

Credit Card Guru's Rating:  4 out of 5
Overall, I think this is an excellent primary credit card if you're looking to redeem points for non-travel awards (i.e. TV's, microwaves, iPad, MacBook, etc..). This card is above average for travel redemption vs. other points cards. CIBC AeroGold Visa or TD AAdvantage Platinum Visa credit cards are better for medium to long-haul flight redemption.

Let me highlight some of the Pros and Cons.


  • Excellent start-up bonus (35,000 points)
  • Very good anual renewal bonus (10,000 points)
  • Ample redemption awards (allowing one to redeem for anything that can be charged to the card)
  • Good travel coverage (medical, trip cancellation, etc...)
  • Redemption values are comparable to other points (non-airline) credit cards, allowing you to spend less to obtain the "small" awards.


  • Not great for medium to long-haul flight awards (i.e. a flight to Cancun costs $916+ taxes on AC, thus you would have to redeem 92,000 points, equivalent to $41,000 in annual spending, averaging out to $3,400/ month).
    • To redeem the same flight with a CIBC Aerogold credit card you would spend $35,000 (for 35,000 points), thus your overspending with Capital One.
  • It's geared to the above-average household income consumer, or above-average credit card spender as the redemption levels are difficult to obtain.

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