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Update #2: This news was eventually confirmed. The partnership with Hotels.com is ending on 1/31/20.
Update: Gary from View From The Wing has contacted Capital One who confirmed that they haven’t made an announcement regarding this. The Hotels.com/Venture landing page lists the end date as January 31, 2020, but the partnership could be extended beyond that date. If anything is formally announced, we’ll let you know.
Just over a year ago, Capital One started offering 10% back on its Venture cards when booking stays through Hotels.com. They’ve now announced that this partnership will be ending on January 31, 2020.
You can find more details about the partnership in our original post covering the announcement. See: Capital One & Hotels.com Team Up For 10x Miles On Venture Cards.
In my opinion, this isn’t a huge loss as you were forgoing discounts and rewards worth far more than you were getting through this partnership. For starters, you had to book directly at hotels.com/venture which meant you missed out on portal rewards worth ~5%. Secondly, the 10% included the 1.5%/2% you already earned by paying with the Venture card, so you were actually only earning an additional 8.5%/8%.
Not only did the partnership limit your rewards, but it also limited your savings. That’s because you can frequently save 15%-20% on Hotels.com gift cards through all kinds of methods:
- Raise – Raise sells discounted Hotels.com gift cards and TopCashback is currently offering 8% on Raise purchases. Alternatively, Raise often provides promo codes offering sitewide or travel-category discounts.
- Amex Offers – There are sometimes specific Hotels.com gift card Amex Offers, such as ‘Buy $50 gift card and get $10/1,000 Membership Rewards back‘. Other Amex Offers give 20% back at stores with gift card racks that stock Hotels.com gift cards.
- Amazon/Chase/Amex promotions – Amazon sometimes offers promotions where you can use 1 Ultimate Rewards point to save $15 off $60 or 1 Membership Rewards point to save $100 off $500. This provides an opportunity to stock up on their cards at 20%-25% off.
- Gift Card Sellers – Sites and apps like Newegg, Gyft, PayPal Digital Gifts, Bitmo, etc. sometimes sell Hotels.com gift cards at a 15%-20% discount.
All these methods would save you more money than paying with a Venture card, so there’s no need to be too disappointed after January 31, 2020 if it’s a partnership you’ve made use of.