Capital One Spark Cash Select Full Review
Introductory offer at 0% APR
Light on fresh
Small rewards and introductory cash bonuses
Your personal credit history could be affected
- Introductory offer at 0% APR: The card‘s 0% APR on purchases for nine months can be a useful source of short-term financing for your business. You can buy inventory, supplies, or whatever the business needs and take most of a year to pay it off without interest. In the absence of a limit on the use of the offer, other than your credit limit, the savings can be substantial compared to billing purchases on the card and paying a regular APR. For example, let’s say you put $ 3,000 for a fleet vehicle on Capital One Spark Cash Select the first month you got the card, and then pay for the purchase in regular installments over nine months. With the 0% APR, you would only pay one-ninth of the $ 3,000 principal each month, or between $ 333 and $ 334 per month, and pay no interest. Without the offer and paying an interest rate of 17%, you would have to find an additional amount of about $ 26 for each of the nine monthly payments and pay $ 171 in interest on top of the principal of $ 3,000.
- Spotlight on fees: The card does not charge annual fees, overseas transaction fees, or fees for additional employee cards. For cost-conscious business owners and new startups, this card could be a great way to get money back into your business through rewards without incurring any fees, as long as you pay your bill in full and you avoided other standard card fees. .
- Small rewards and introductory cash bonuses: The card’s 1.5% flat-rate cash back on every purchase is pretty straightforward and decent for a no-annual fee card, but other small business cards offer better rates, albeit often with an annual fee. Likewise, Capital One Spark Cash Select’s one-time $ 200 cash offer after spending $ 3,000 in the first three months is a relatively large expense for a relatively small return. Some other cards offer a larger bonus for a smaller “spend”.
- Your personal credit history could be affected: Like most major business credit card issuers, Capital One reports your card activity to business credit bureaus, which can help you establish a business credit history. But Capital One also reports this information to consumer credit bureaus. This means that racking up a huge balance or missing a payment on the car could potentially lower your personal credit score, especially if the problem happens again.
The Capital One Spark Cash Select is best suited for new businesses that need a no-fee card that will earn them decent rewards and the option of nine months of interest-free purchases. Its 1.5% cash lump sum rewards have an appealing simplicity for businesses that have little time to get a handle on the multiple reward rates of some cards, and don’t spend enough in a category to justify the time it takes for such a follow-up. . Ideally, it’s also a card for those who have few concerns about the company’s cash flow or other issues that could sometimes compromise their ability to make regular payments or be a great customer. This is because unlike most other business card issuers, Capital One provides the credit reports of their business card holders to agencies that issue credit scores used for consumer credit cards.
Multiple missteps with this card could therefore potentially compromise your ability to obtain additional personal credit at relatively low interest rates. This could be a deciding factor for business owners who want a clear separation between their business and their personal financial transactions.
Capital One Spark Cash Select Bonus
As a new cardholder, your business will receive a one-time offer of $ 200 after spending $ 3,000 in the first three months.
This is a relatively low return on expenses. For example, that’s less than half of what you would get for the same spending requirement with Chase Ink Business Unlimited, which offers a $ 750 bonus after spending $ 7,500 in the first three months.
You will get 1.5% fixed cash back on every purchase you make. While these are solid enough rewards for a no annual fee business card, they are not the best rates, even among no annual fee business cards.
Reward redemption details
Your cash back rewards will never expire and you can redeem them for cash at any amount at any time. You can receive money in the form of a statement credit or a paper check. You can even set up automatic redemptions once your balance reaches a certain threshold, such as $ 25, $ 50, $ 100, $ 200, $ 500, or $ 1,500.
Other redemption options include gift cards and statement credits for specific purchases (as opposed to general credit).
How to Maximize Your Rewards
This card’s cash back rewards are worth the same regardless of how you redeem them. So other than using your card for every purchase you can, there’s not much you can do to maximize the value of the cash back you receive.
Using Capital One Spark Cash Select in the first nine months potentially gives you unlimited interest-free funding through the card’s 0% APR offer. Naturally, you should aim to pay off your balance in full at the end of the interest-free period to prevent high interest charges from eating into your savings.
- Secondary rental car insurance
- Travel assistance
- Extended warranty protection
- Free employee cards and personalized spending limits
- Year-end summaries
- Buy recordings in multiple formats
Capital One was ranked fifth in JD Power Credit card customer satisfaction survey 2020 behind Discover and American Express, in the average for national card issuers.
The bank offers free access to your corporate credit report through its Business CreditWise feature. No other major business credit card issuer provides free access to your business credit history information.
Capital One provides 24/7 customer service, which is standard among credit card issuers. You can manage your account online or with the card issuer’s mobile app, ranked # 2 by JD Power in its 2020 satisfaction survey on the mobile applications of US banks.
Capital One allows cardholders to lock their card or an employee’s card from the mobile app. This can prevent someone from using the card if it is lost or stolen, and can also be useful if you want to restrict employee use of the card.
Other than that, the bank’s security features are industry standard.
Fees to watch out for
Overall, Capital One Spark Cash Select’s fees are up to industry standards. One exception is that it does not charge a foreign transaction fee, which is rare for a cash back credit card.
The Capital One Spark Cash Select is a passable card for a business that doesn’t spend so heavily that it would gain a substantial additional benefit from a card with richer rewards. But in most key areas, it lags behind a number of competitors, including some that don’t charge an annual fee, at least for the first year.
Take for example the Amex Blue Business Cash. It offers 2% cash back on the first $ 50,000 spent annually. Additionally, Amex Blue Business Cash has a better 0% APR offer than Capital One Spark Cash Select, offering 12 months of 0% APR purchases. Then there’s the Chase Ink Business Unlimited, which has no annual fee and offers the same 12-month 0% APR on purchases as the Amex Blue Business Cash, while also offering a $ 750 bonus. – more than three times the size of the one with the Capital One Spark Cash Select – for $ 7,500 spent in the first three months.
If 0% APR isn’t a priority for you, there’s also this card’s sibling, Capital One Spark Cash. It offers unlimited rewards at a higher 2% cash back rate. And while it doesn’t have a 0% APR offer, it does offer higher bonuses, especially for big spenders: $ 500 in cash if you spend $ 4,500 in the first three months with the card.
Finally, keep in mind that Capital One’s report on business credit card activity to consumer credit bureaus could be a deciding factor for those concerned that their business credit problems could potentially carry a blow to their consumer credit score.
Discover also reports activity on its business cards to consumer credit bureaus, but no other major issuer does. If you prefer to separate your personal and work credit history, consider business cards from issuers other than Capital One and Discover.