Capital One vs. Bank of America Credit Cards [2024]: Who Wins?

CREDIT CARDS - CASH BACK CREDIT CARDS
We generally prefer Capital One to Bank of America, but there are situations where Bank of America comes out on top.
Updated April 13, 2024
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When deciding between Capital One versus Bank of America credit cards, we often prefer Capital One. We believe Capital One credit cards have better base earning rates and benefits than Bank of America credit cards.

We especially like the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card and Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card over similar cards from Bank of America. This is because their simple earning rates make it easy to avoid carrying multiple cards in your wallet.

But despite our general preference, we think Bank of America credit cards excel in certain scenarios, such as having a long intro APR offer from a card like the BankAmericard® credit card. Or if you qualify for the Bank of America Preferred Rewards® program and can boost your earning potential by up to 75%.

In this Capital One and Bank of America credit cards comparison

Key takeaways

  • Bank of America is the second largest bank in the U.S., whereas Capital One is the 10th largest. Chase is first, Citi is third, and Wells Fargo is fourth.
  • Capital One has more than 15 transfer partners compared to zero for Bank of America.
  • Both Capital One and Bank of America provide various credit card types, including travel, business, student, secured, balance transfer, and cashback rewards cards.
  • We generally recommend Capital One over Bank of America because Capital One credit cards tend to have better earning rates and benefits.
  • Bank of America can make more sense in some situations, for example, if you qualify for the Bank of America Preferred Rewards®’ 25% to 75% rewards bonus.

Comparison of Capital One vs. Bank of America credit cards

Capital One credit cards Bank of America credit cards
Number of credit cards 30 26
Types of cards Travel, Cash back, Business, Student, Secured, Balance transfer Travel, Cash back, Business, Student, Secured, Balance transfer
Main credit card issuer perks
  • Many cards provide ways to cover past purchases with rewards
  • Certain cards provide a 2X base earning rate, which is one of the best available rates on rewards credit cards
  • Bank of America Preferred Rewards® members can boost their earnings by 25% to 75%
  • Many cards have intro APR offers
Travel partners Airlines
  • AeroMexico
  • Air Canada
  • Air France KLM
  • Avianca
  • British Airways
  • Cathay Pacific (Asia Miles)
  • Emirates
  • Etihad
  • EVA Air
  • Finnair
  • Qantas
  • Singapore Airlines
  • TAP Air Portugal
  • Turkish Airlines
  • Virgin Red
Hotels
  • Accor
  • Choice
  • Wyndham
None

Our verdict

Capital One is our overall recommended option because its cards are generally easy to use. In like-to-like comparisons with Bank of America cards, Capital One tends to come out on top. We also like that Capital One has transfer partners, which you won’t find with Bank of America.

Capital One benefits and drawbacks

Pros Cons
  • Offers plenty of credit cards to choose from
  • Has 15 transfer partners
  • Offers cards with high earning rates for non-bonus categories
  • Issues the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card, one of our recommended travel credit cards
  • Doesn’t have many in-person banking locations
  • Appears to have an unofficial rule of allowing no more than two Capital One consumer cards at the same time

You can choose between 30 different Capital One cards, including personal and business credit cards. This gives you many options when looking for a card that aligns with your preferences, spending habits, and financial goals.

We like how Capital One has a robust rewards program that provides plenty of earning and redemption options, including transferring miles to travel partners on eligible cards. Capital One especially impresses with its cards that provide high earning rates on any eligible purchase rather than specific categories.

That said, We don’t think Capital One is the best option for you if you prefer visiting in-person branches, as it has a limited number of locations. Also, keep in mind that Capital One may have an unofficial rule of not allowing more than two Capital One consumer cards at once. Since this isn’t an official rule, there appear to be some exceptions that allow you to have more than two cards, such as secured cards and co-branded store cards.

Learn more about Capital One credit cards.

Bank of America benefits and drawbacks

Pros Cons
  • Offers many credit cards to choose from
  • Has many in-person banking locations
  • Offers several credit cards with long intro APR periods
  • Issues the BankAmericard® credit card, one of our recommended low-interest credit cards
  • Allows boosting your earning by 25% to 75% as a Bank of America Preferred Rewards® member
  • Doesn’t have transfer partners
  • Requires at least a $20,000 three-month combined average daily balance in eligible accounts to qualify for the Bank of America Preferred Rewards® program

Bank of America provides more than 25 personal and business credit cards to choose from, including travel, cash back, and low-interest cards.

We think Bank of America does an excellent job with having intro APR offers on many of its cards, which can be helpful if you have upcoming large expenses or want to do a balance transfer.

Bank of America has a unique and valuable benefit with its Bank of America Preferred Rewards® program (or Bank of America Preferred Rewards® for Business for eligible small business cards). This free-to-join program can help boost your credit card earnings by 25% to 75%, which is something you can’t find with other card issuers.

But the requirements can be steep to become a Bank of America Preferred Rewards® member, requiring at least a $20,000 average daily balance in your eligible accounts over a three-month period to qualify for the 25% boost. The requirement increases to at least a $100,000 three-month average daily account balance for the 75% boost. We also don’t like that there’s no option to transfer points to travel partners with Bank of America travel cards.

Learn more about Bank of America credit cards.

0% intro APR: Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card vs. BankAmericard® credit card

Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card

Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card

BankAmericard® credit card

BankAmericard® credit card

Intro APR for balance transfers 0% intro APR for 15 months on balance transfers (then 19.99% - 29.99% (Variable))

Balance transfer fee: Balance transfer fee applies

0% intro APR for 18 billing cycles for any qualifying balance transfers made in the first 60 days (then 16.24% - 26.24% Variable)

Balance transfer fee: 3% for 60 days from account opening, then 4%

Intro APR for purchases 0%

intro APR for 15 months on purchases (then 19.99% - 29.99% (Variable))

0% intro APR for 18 billing cycles on purchases (then 16.24% - 26.24% Variable)
Annual fee $0 $0
Welcome bonus Earn a one-time $200 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening Extensive introductory APR offer on purchases and qualifying balance transfers
Earning rate 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day; and 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel (terms apply) None
Credit needed Excellent, Good Excellent, Good
Learn more Learn more

The main thing Capital One Quicksilver and BankAmericard cards share is that they both have intro APR offers.

As far as intro APR offers go, we prefer the BankAmericard because of its lengthy intro APR periods that can help you save on interest charges for longer. However, it earns no rewards.

If you want to earn rewards and don’t need as long of an intro APR period, you may prefer the Capital One Quicksilver.

Winner
We generally prefer the BankAmericard for its lengthy intro APR periods.

Note that you can also find Bank of America credit cards that provide ongoing rewards and intro APR offers. For example, the Bank of America® Unlimited Cash Rewards credit card provides:

  • Unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases
  • 0% intro APR for 15 billing cycles for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days (then 18.24% - 28.24% Variable)
  • 0% intro APR on purchases for 15 billing cycles (then 18.24% - 28.24% Variable)

Cash back: Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card vs. Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card

Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card

Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card

Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card

Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card

Earning rate 3% cash back on dining and at grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart® and Target®), popular streaming services, and entertainment; 5% back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel; 8% cash back on Capital One Entertainment purchases; 10% cash back on purchases made through Uber & Uber Eats (through 11/14/2024); and 1% cash back on all other purchases 3% cash back in the category of your choice and 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (up to $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club quarterly purchases) and 1% on all other purchases
Welcome bonus Earn a one-time $200 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening Earn a $200 online cash rewards bonus after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening
Annual fee $0 $0
Redemption methods
  • Statement credits
  • Mailed checks
  • Credit toward previous purchases
  • Travel
  • Gift cards
  • Amazon
  • PayPal
  • Statement credits
  • Mailed checks
  • Deposits into a Bank of America checking or savings account
  • Credits to an eligible account with Merrill
Intro APR for balance transfers 0% intro APR for 15 months on balance transfers (then 19.99% - 29.99% (Variable))

Balance transfer fee: Balance transfer fee applies

0% intro APR for 15 billing cycles for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days (then 18.24% - 28.24% Variable)

Balance transfer fee: 3% for 60 days from account opening, then 4%

Intro APR for purchases 0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases (then 19.99% - 29.99% (Variable)) 0% intro APR for 15 billing cycles on purchases (then 18.24% - 28.24% Variable)
Foreign transaction fee None 3%
Credit needed Excellent, Good Excellent
Learn more Learn more

Both the Capital One SavorOne and Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards provide decent earning rates on different categories.

The Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards makes it easy to control how you earn rewards by letting you select certain bonus categories, including gas, travel, or dining. But there’s a limit to how much you can earn each quarter with the highest earning rates on the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards.

For this reason, we prefer the Capital One SavorOne because it doesn’t have a spending cap on its rewards rate.

Winner
We like the Capital One SavorOne because it has more earning potential if your everyday expenses align with its bonus categories.

Bank of America Preferred Rewards® members can boost their eligible credit card earnings by 25% to 75%. Keep in mind you need at least between $20,000 and $100,000 in eligible accounts’ average daily balance over a three-month period to qualify.

But even with that potential boost, we still think the Capital One SavorOne has the better earning potential in this matchup.

Travel rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card vs. Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card

Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card

Earning rate 2 miles per dollar on every purchase, every day, 5 miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5 miles per dollar on Capital One Entertainment purchases through 12/31/25 2 points per $1 on travel and dining purchases and 1.5 points per $1 on all other purchases
Welcome bonus Earn a one-time bonus of 75,000 miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening Earn 60,000 online bonus points (a $600 value) after you make at least $4,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening
Annual fee $95 $95
Redemption methods
  • Travel
  • Credit toward past travel purchases
  • Transfers to travel partners
  • Statement credits
  • Mailed checks
  • Gift cards
  • Amazon
  • PayPal
  • Travel
  • Statement credits
  • Direct deposits into Bank of America savings or checking accounts
  • Credits to an eligible account with Merrill
  • Gift cards
Annual credits
  • Up to $100 credit for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry every four years
  • Up to $100 credit for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry every four years
  • Up to $100 in airline incidental statement credits each year
Travel perks
  • 2 free visits per year to Capital One or Plaza Premium Lounges
  • Hertz Five Star elite status1
  • Visa Signature Luxury Hotel Collection
Foreign transaction fee None None
Credit needed Excellent, Good Excellent, Good
Learn more Learn more

The Capital One Venture Rewards and Bank of America Premium Rewards share a few similarities between their rewards rates and annual fees. Either card can function as a low-annual-fee option for someone interested in earning rewards and redeeming them for travel.

But we think the Capital One Venture shines with its better overall earning rate and redemption options. For example, you can use the Capital One Travel portal to redeem miles for flights, hotel stays, and car rentals.

And you can also redeem miles to cover past travel purchases or transfer miles to many transfer partners, such as Air Canada Aeroplan and British Airways Executive Club. Having these options gives you more flexibility with your rewards.

Winner
We generally prefer the Capital One Venture Rewards for its better earning rate and redemption methods.

Keep in mind that Bank of America Preferred Rewards® members can boost their earnings with eligible credit cards by 25% to 75%. The 25% boost requires at least $20,000 in average daily balance among eligible accounts for three months, while the 75% boost requires at least $100,000.

In the case of the Bank of America Premium Rewards, that may give you a better base earning rate than the Capital One Venture Rewards.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card
Earning rate 2 miles per dollar on every purchase, every day

1.5X points on all other purchases

Premium Rewards boosts: 25%, 50%, and 75%

Luxury travel perks: Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card vs. Bank of America®️ Premium Rewards® Elite Credit Card

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card

Bank of America®️ Premium Rewards® Elite Credit Card

Bank of America®️ Premium Rewards® Elite Credit Card

Earning rate 2 miles per dollar on every purchase, every day; 10 miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, 5 miles per dollar on flights booked through Capital One Travel, and 5 miles per dollar on Capital One Entertainment purchases through 12/31/25 2X points on travel and dining, and 1.5X points on all other purchases
Welcome bonus Earn 75,000 miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening Earn 75,000 online bonus points (worth $750) after spending $5,000 in the first 90 days of account opening
Annual fee $395 $550
Redemption methods
  • Travel
  • Credit toward past travel purchases
  • Transfers to travel partners
  • Statement credits
  • Mailed checks
  • Gift cards
  • Amazon
  • PayPal
  • Travel
  • Experiences
  • Event tickets
  • Statement credits
  • Deposits into Bank of America checking or savings accounts
  • Credits to an eligible investment account or similar with Merrill
  • Gift cards
Annual credits
  • $300 annual travel credit through Capital One Travel
  • 10,000 anniversary miles (equal to $100 toward travel)
  • Up to $100 credit for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry every four years
  • Up to $300 in annual airline incidental statement credits
  • Up to $150 annual credit for lifestyle conveniences, such as streaming services, food delivery, and rideshare services
  • Up to $100 credit for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry every four years
Travel perks
  • Access to Priority Pass, Capital One, and Plaza Premium Lounges
  • Hertz President’s Circle elite status1
  • Complimentary six-month The Cultivist membership
  • Access to Priority Pass airport lounges with up to four complimentary Priority Pass memberships
  • 24/7 full-service concierge
  • Save 20% on airfare point redemptions
Other benefits
  • Free additional cardholders
  • Visa Infinite benefits, including cell phone protection, car rental insurance, and more2
  • Visa Infinite benefits, including car rental insurance, purchase security, and more
Foreign transaction fee None None
Credit needed Excellent Excellent
Learn more Learn more

There’s a lot going for the Bank of America Premium Rewards Elite, including up to $550 in various credits, which can help offset the $550 annual fee for the first year. You also receive complimentary Priority Pass lounge access.

But we think the Capital One Venture X is better. It has a lower $395 annual fee, and its annual credits and benefits are likely easier to use because they involve common travel redemptions. With the Venture X, you also get more lounge access, including Priority Pass, Capital One, and Plaza Premium Lounges.

Winner
We like the Capital One Venture X because it generally has a better earning rate, travel benefits, and travel redemptions.

Note that Bank of America Preferred Rewards® members with average daily balances between $20,000 and $100,000 over three months can boost their eligible credit card earnings by 25% to 75%. Here’s what that could mean for Bank of America Premium Rewards Elite cardholders:

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card Bank of America®️ Premium Rewards® Elite Credit Card
Earning rate 2 miles per dollar on every purchase, every day

1.5X points on all other purchases

Premium Rewards boosts: 25%, 50%, and 75%

Which credit card issuer should you choose?

When you should choose Capital One:

  • You already have a relationship with Capital One and want to keep your banking services under one roof.
  • You prefer using one card with an elevated rewards rate for all eligible purchases.
  • You don’t mind primarily using online banking services and a mobile app rather than visiting in-person locations.
  • You want to take advantage of Capital One transfer partners, including Air France KLM, Emirates, and Wyndham.

When you should choose Bank of America:

  • You already have a relationship with Bank of America and want to keep your banking services under one roof.
  • You want long intro APR offers.
  • You like having in-person branches and ATMs to visit if needed.
  • You prefer cash-related redemption options, such as bank deposits.

We generally recommend Capital One credit cards over Bank of America credit cards because they tend to have better rewards rates and benefits. But that doesn’t mean everyone should choose Capital One over Bank of America, as it depends on your spending habits and personal preferences.

Where Bank of America shines is with its intro APR offers. Capital One can’t compete with the intro APR periods you can find on many Bank of America cards, including the BankAmericard.

However, The Bank of America Preferred Rewards® program is an exclusive benefit that can provide considerable value. If you qualify as a Bank of America Preferred Rewards® member, you’d get a 25% to 75% earnings boost. But not everyone has enough money saved up to qualify, as the program requires $20,000 to $100,000 in average daily balance over a three-month period to qualify.

FAQ

Is it better to get a credit card through your bank or a different bank?

It might be easier to get a credit card through your bank if you already have an existing relationship. But you shouldn’t let this restrict you from applying for credit cards from other banks if their rewards or benefits better align with your personal finance goals. Most credit card issuers use multiple factors to determine your eligibility for their cards, even if you don’t have an existing relationship with them.

Is Capital One owned by Bank of America?

No, Capital One and Bank of America are separate financial institutions and two of the largest national banks. Bank of America has a history dating back more than 240 years. Capital One is newer, as it was founded in 1994. Both companies provide similar services, including credit cards, debit cards, bank accounts, loans, and more.

Is it hard to get a credit card from Bank of America?

The ease of getting a credit card from Bank of America depends on your credit score, the card you’re applying for, and other factors the bank may take into consideration. Many Bank of America credit cards require at least a good credit score, similar to credit cards from other issuers.

Capital One vs. Bank of America: Bottom line

We generally recommend Capital One over Bank of America because it offers better base earning rates and benefits. That doesn’t mean Bank of America isn’t competitive, but we think Capital One has the more rewarding credit cards.

However, Bank of America credit cards might offer more value if you qualify for its Bank of America Preferred Rewards® program and can get a 75% boost on your credit card rewards. Keep in mind that qualifying for the 75% boost has a daily average minimum balance requirement of $100,000 among eligible accounts over three months.

Bank of America also does a better job of providing valuable intro APR offers on many of its credit cards. Check out our dedicated page to compare credit cards and find the right credit card for you. You can even look at specific card comparisons, such as Chase Freedom Unlimited vs. Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards credit card, for a closer look at various cards and their benefits.

Lucrative, Flat-Rate Cash Rewards

5.0

Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card

Current Offer

$200 cash rewards bonus after spending $500 in purchases in the first 3 months

Annual Fee

$0

Rewards Rate

Earn 2% cash rewards on purchases

Benefits and Drawbacks
Card Details

Author Details

Ben Walker, CEPF, CFEI® Ben Walker, CEPF, CFEI®, is a Senior Credit Cards Writer at FinanceBuzz. For over a decade, he's leveraged credit card points and miles to travel the world. His expertise extends to other areas of personal finance — including loans, insurance, investing, and real estate — and you can find his insights on The Washington Post, Debt.com, Yahoo! Finance, and Fox Business.

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