Credit Card Review: Capital One Quicksilver Rewards (COF)

Using a cash back rewards card to make daily purchases is a great way to put a good credit history to work. The problem is, many cash back cards have confusing purchase categories and complex rules that make it a challenge to maximize rewards. The Quicksilver Rewards card, issued by Capital One Financial Corp (COF), does away with all that complexity and confusion by granting the same attractive cash back reward on all purchases, with no limits or rules to worry about.

The Rewards and Benefits

The Quicksilver Rewards card pays 1.5% cash back on every purchase. While there are a variety of competing cards that offer cash back rewards of 2, 3 and even 5%, there are generally restrictions in place to limit the cash back a cardholder can earn at the higher rates. The Capital One Quicksilver Rewards card has no limits in place whatsoever. On top of the regular purchase reward, the Quicksilver Rewards card also provides a special cash back benefit for cardholders who use Uber, a popular company in the ride-hailing app market. Cardholders who use the Quicksilver Rewards card to pay for Uber fares get 20% of each fare back as a statement credit.

In terms of sign-up bonuses, all new Quicksilver Rewards cardholders can earn a $100 bonus for spending at least $500 on the card within the first three months of ownership. As of 2015, new cardholders also receive an introductory purchase and balance-transfer annual percentage rate (APR) of 0% for the first nine months of card ownerships. While a nine month 0% APR period is certainly an attractive bonus, cardholders should note that many other cash back cards on the market offer 0% APR periods of 12 or even 15 months.

The Fine Print

At the end of the introductory 0% APR period, the purchase and balance-transfer rate rises to 12.9 to 22.9%. The standard rate for cash advances is 24.9%. While these rates are very competitive with other quality cash back rewards cards, they can prove quite costly over time. Cardholders who want to take full advantage of the Quicksilver Rewards cash back program should avoid carrying any month-to-month balance on the card at all. At a rate of 12.9%, the lowest standard APR available, interest costs quickly overtake any cash back rewards a cardholder might earn.

There are also several nice surprises to be found in the fine print for this card. First, it has no annual fee. Next, travelers do not pay any foreign transaction fees for purchases made outside the United States. Many other cash back cards charge fees of 2.7 to 3% on every foreign transaction, which can add up fast. Finally, cardholders can redeem any amount of accumulated cash back rewards at any time. In contrast, some cash back cards require a minimum rewards balance of $25 before funds are released.

Main Competitors

The Capital One Quicksilver Rewards card faces pretty heavy competition in the market for cash back cards. Quite a few attractive options currently vie for consumer attention, including the Chase Freedom card, the American Express Blue Cash Everyday Card, the Citi Double Cash card and the Discover it card, among others. While each card offers a slightly different mix of features and benefits, they all have plenty to offer interested cardholders.

The Quicksilver Rewards card excels in a couple areas. First, its cash back program is as simple as can be: 1.5% cash back on every purchase. The lack of rotating categories, purchase limits and activation requirements is a big advantage over the more complicated cash back programs. This card's other big advantage is found in the flexible rewards redemption process. Add in the lack of foreign transaction fees and the 20% Uber bonus and this card stacks up pretty well against the competition.

Who Should Get It

Given its flexibility and ease of use, this card is a solid option for all kinds of cardholders, from young professionals to growing families. It makes an especially good card for big spenders who can keep earning full rewards without worrying about arbitrary spending limits. Regular Uber users should absolutely consider the Quicksilver Rewards card, as 20% savings on every fare really adds up in a hurry.

Additionally, when using Quicksilver credit card, cash bak you earned would have no expiration date for the time of the account. It means that cash back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open, and you can use them whenever you want.

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