Is Capital One a Good Credit Card Company?

Is Capital One good or bad? Here’s what you need to know about the company and their credit cards…

A reader recently emailed me this question and before answering, I first asked her “What is it that you have heard about Capital One?” Her response? She remembers hearing they are for people with bad credit and questioned their customer service.

Is there any truth to that?

The Capital One of today is a totally different company than you may have been familiar with in the past. Today they are among the highest-rated card issuers in America.

Years ago (think 90’s and early 00’s) Capital One experienced good growth, by heavily catering to the subprime customers – those with less than stellar credit scores.

Because many of their customer’s were in the sub-prime crowd, as you can guess there were rampant complaints about late fees, interest charges, etc. and this tarnished the company’s reputation.

There’s no denying that in the past, their customer service left much to be desired. But in all fairness, the company took the beating extra-hard – probably unwarranted – simply because their customers who were using their cards irresponsibly chose to blame Capital One rather than themselves.

Where does the company stand today?

Over the past few years, Capital One has worked hard to improve their reputation and their customer base. Rather than focusing on subprime customers, these days their emphasis seems to be the prime crowd – those with good credit.

Let’s objectively review the pros and cons for Capital One:

Advantages:

  • No Foreign transaction fees – Capital One is the only bank to completely waive these fees across their entire product line and they should be commended for such a customer-friendly pricing policy.
  • Caters to different credit scores – Whether you have a good or bad score, chances are that Capital One has a credit card to fit. They offer secured cards, for rebuilding credit. For good credit, there are various choices for cash back and travel rewards.
  • Different reward programs – Is Capital One good for rewards? Well for those with good credit, there is diverse selection of reward programs available. Not all of them are the best, but some like the Venture card (for excellent credit) offer good rebates.
  • Improved customer service – A number of forum members have reported that on the higher up prime-level cards, they get American based customer service.

Disadvantages:

  • Fees for some cards – Some of their credit cards do carry a fee. For example, those which are secured and for lower credit scores, there might be a fee involved. Also, their best reward cards have an annual fee.
  • Benefits might be limited – Is Capital One a good for benefits? Well, that depends on the card. Their basic ones tend to just have the standard benefits. However with the fee-based cards for great credit, there are some extra bells and whistles thrown in. But they currently don’t have anything on par with say, an AmEx Gold or Platinum.
  • Credit limits might not be high – If you have bad credit, you may end up with a lower limit and trying to get increases on it in the future may not yield results. Or at least, that’s according to what forum members have shared.
  • Foreign customer service on some cards – In a perfect world, all products would come with American-based customer service. But unfortunately that’s not the world we live in. For the lower level cards especially, foreign customer service reps are common (but in all fairness, that’s how it is with every credit card company).

List of Capital One credit cards

TravelCash backSecuredStudent
VentureQuicksilverCapital One Secured MasterCardJourney Student Rewards
VentureOneQuicksilverOne

Verdict?

So, is Capital One a quality credit card issuer or not? Well, I would say they have achieved that status in recent years. The difference between the Capital One of the past and the company of today represents a vast improvement. They still aren’t perfect, but they have came along ways and are continuing to improve their products, policies and customer service.

As mentioned, the Venture card is a big improvement and you can check out my Capital One Venture card review to learn more. However make sure you check out our rankings of the best credit cards available to compare side by side.

Last updated on June 10, 2016

 
Comments
The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

I had a quicksilver card and applied for a capital one credit card. I was approved for a $3000 credit limit , received my card and tried to activate on my login page. It told me my account was restricted. Because I was at work I did an online chat and was told I needed to call. I called the number I was given and was sent to the fraud department. The person on the other kind, after I gave my six security number and other identifying information told me they couldn’t help me because they had the real person on the other line. We became disconnected and I couldn’t call back since I was at work. I then looked online and saw that they cancelled my online id. Are they kidding?

had a 300 dollar limit when applying for the cap 1 plat card after having rough credit from my younger days. I paid it off multiple times in the 2-3 months I had it and one day received an email congratulating me that they increased my balance early to 2k. Very Happy with this company so I decided to apply for the journey and get some rewards while I’m building my credit $500 approval

Sheila fidelman

Capital one approved me for several cards then canceled them before I could activate them. Waited for an hour to speak with a customer service rep who could barely speak the English language. There is no credit freeze, I checked. Thanks capital one…

I recently started attacking my bad credit head on. it was bad to say the least, like in the 400’s two years ago. Fast forward to 2015. Got on credit karma and found out that I was in the mid 500 range around January. Called capital one this July, spoke to a rep and they found a few cards to fit my needs. Instant approval for 500 limit on qs one. Used it for three weeks and spent over $2000 and paid the balance off multiple times a week. Called last week of August to ask about limit increase to avoid multiple payments a week. Denied increase bc of account age. Buti did apply for platinum master card for emergencies while waiting for payments to process. Approved for $1000 limit on the platinum mc. Only problem with capital one is I have good payment history as in no insufficient funds payments and first 4-5 payments process next morning by 8am. Lately all payments have had hold applied to make sure funds from checking account are available. Not huge deal just have to call and let them varify through my bank that payment is good. And instant release on hold and full credit line back in use. But capital one has taken a chance on me having my damaged credit and I am thankful for that. Barring a severe meltdown I will be capital one loyal. Qs one approved at around 590 score or so platinum mc approved instantly with 640 score less than 1 month of getting qs one card

I got an explanation for you it works like this In the credit world theres 2 inquiries taking place Soft and Hard a soft inquiry is habndled internally a credit limit increase is a soft inquire meaning that your credit is not ran in order to get a limit increased i ts based on accounts age and payment history and the hard inquires wich take in consideration your credit scores so the reason why ur credit limit increase was declined on the first card was because its an internal review and the second one was a new card aplication taking in consideration the score earned from the credit reports submited for you by your financial institution

Three months since I got the quicksilver one card. Apply for limit increase just before third statement and instantly approved for a $6000 increase. Yes I said six thousand. Wonder what my steps increase will be

I have been with capital one for well over a year! It was one of the first cards I got! Now I have upgrade to the quicksilver one card ,but still have the same $500 credit limit? I asked them for a credit increase but got denied because I got one( now like 6 month age for $200 ) have to other cards with great credit limits ! Don’t won’t to get rid of capital one ?

here is a test ! have Capital One answer one question for ou hang up call back three or four times asking the same thing you will get a different answer every time with not a one of them being true !!! Not one of their monkies are trained with the same book !!! At least American Express, Discover and Citi Bank know how to run a cc company

Capital One gave me a chance when no one would. $300 to $2000 CL (while rebuilding my credit which took a while, so be patient), then I got their journey card last year $3000 to $6000 to $9000. Customer service is courteous and helpful, no international usage fees. I think they’re a great CC company, certainly better than most out there.

I love Capital One. I applied for the Student Journey Card was instantly approved for 300 dollars and now five months later my limit is 3300 dollars. I have paid a payments each week since I have owned the card. I use the Card for the rewards then pay off the card each week for that amount that is due. I thank Capital One for giving me a chance and I have proven myself to them. Also I applied for Discover student card they denied me then once I got my limit increase through Capital One my credit score went up by almost 100 and Discover wanted me to now get want of there cards. I will stick with Capital One since they are the company they choose to give me a chance. Thanks Capital One. I recommend them to co-workers and Family.

Capital One Is The Best Credit Card Company In The world. They Are Very Realistic, When It Comes to Issuing credit cards To All Different Kinds Of People with Different Credit Scores. They Are one of the only companies that will issue you a major credit card after a bankruptcy or other credit issue from the past. Be thankful there is such a company.. I believe things happen in life for many different reasons good or bad and A company that can put a side your past issues and give you a start is unheard of. chase, bank of America, American express and several others will only mark your credit report and tell you your not trust worthy. So don’t waste your time on those companies. Summit a application to capital one especially their quick silver card, pay off the balance every month and you end up receiving money to have the card.

capital one is no good… I charged one item for $40 & they charged me all these fees & I only used the cc once!! no good ……..

its definitely something missing from this story nancy. I find it hard to believe that you used your card and you got punished for doing so. Speak the truth…

well p-have you found a better company yet than cap one-i doubt it-what horrendous custmer service-i lve em-they are great

when you cant get approved by anyone else then why lambaste the only credit card co that will gamble on you and offer you a starting point in life to which you can build your credit-just be patient and live your life and carry your capital one and use it for important matters=it can be a life saver in a bind-prove yourself to capital one as they have proved themselves to you if you are a card holder or plan on applying.

capital one has the greatest customer service i have ever encountered—and very polite-helpful and courteous and always speajk english–at least the ones with whom i have chatted-i know because their grammar is pure american-not some foreigner that learned it-but doesnt matter-im sure all of them are as nice as the few i have spoken to and the many more i have chatted with.

for all you cap one card holders that find fault inthem im sure you are not paying or late and not even deserving of it-it doesnt matter which card you get you will be haphazzard handling it also and will complain—capital one is the finest bank card company i have found-i had o credit and i was given a 500.00 card and later i applied for another one and was given 500 limit–there is no magic in having skyhigh limits if you dont need it and cant afford to have one-most people should realize that cards arent crutches for the crippled of debt management–they are a benefeit to people that handles their affairs correctly-thanks cap one for being there for me-i will not give you up for other bank card no matter how high limit is offered to me.let capital one work for you-but smart in life and see just what they do offer you. good luck other happy cap one card holders.

So, Capitol One was pretty bad, and now its exactly the same? Got it.

The bullets about it having high fees and not being very good for points bring it right back to the description of how it was in the 90’s. Better customer service? Sure, just like the cellular companies.

should I be skeptical about having a capital one card?

should cap one be skeptical about giving you a card? that is the question.

I have applied for a few cards over the last year or so with absolutely no luck. Kinda understandable considering I have no credit history. I really just didn’t wanna drop a few hundred dollars for a secured card and pay against it. I have a great job, pay bills, and pay rent ,and it still wasn’t enough for a low limit credit card anywhere. How are you supposed to establish a credit history without being able to get a card!? Anyways, I recently just received an offer in the mail or the Capital One Platinum card. First offer I’ve ever gotten in the mail actually. I was instantly approved for 500$ After going online and applying. Even though it’s small I’m grateful Capital One gave me a chance to prove my worth! I’ve had questions about the card and how the payment processes work and the customer service has been EXCELLENT with answering any questions I had. On top of that , having access to a higher credit line in 5 months is Great! Capital one also has a app for mobile banking which is easy to use and very simple! Can pay bills, check balances, or even select payment dates, or create an auto-payment schedule. Overall I love my Capital one card cause I also get some pretty cool benefits with it as well! I DEFINITELY RECOMMEND Capital one regardless if it’s a starter card or even a rebuilder card! Hope this has been helpful !

I went through exactly the same! Worst thing was to have credit card denied EVEN in the bank that I receive my my salary! I have my monthly payment on it, have automatic payments for EVERYTHING and still they treat me as garbage :-/ It’s not that I had bad credit, I had no history!!! I needed somewhere to start! CAPITAL ONE gave me this credit – they approved me for the secured card and I just started using my credit. For a while I didn’t have problems with customer service. In my opinon CAPITAL ONE is the best! I hope I can rise my credit score soon!

I recently received a Capitol One Sony credit card in the mail. I did not apply for it but it just arrived. The limit is for 4,000. I have a credit score of 719 and I am not really looking for another card except it I accept it then I know my credir score will go up. This is because I will show higher credit availabe with lower debt ratios.
My question is weather it is a good card to have or not, just to increase my credit score

Capital One gave me a 10k limit Quicksilver Visa signature. First, there was all kinds of trouble getting the card delivered. They were also supposed to customize the card (which they didn’t). I called their customer service many times over a week. I NEVER talked to an American. Everyone had a heavy Spanish accent. AND all the customer service people always asked for my FULL social security number, every time I called, which I found crazy.
This didn’t feel like a premiere card or premiere service. I closed the card after the first week.

brian 90-i think you made a mistake closing it–good luck trying to get a 10,000 limit again with anyone-they have all tightened up-maybe a 3000-4000 if you are lucky

What year would you have used them?

What year would you have used them?

I have one question, since I am the beginner in the credit cards. If I got credit card with amount of $2000, how I am giving back the money. Is there some monthly payment due, or I need to return everything at once. Thanks.

your question makes no sense at all. Are you saying if you owe $2000 on a credit card how are you to pay on it? You would, if you owe that or any amount, make the monthly payments that is set forth in the contract provided by your particular lender.

LOL if you get a credit card with a LIMIT of 2000 then you can use it and pay it as you go. They don’t give you credit cards with a BALANCE of 2000.

I applied for a capital one credit card and I was approved for a unsecured credit card with a $500.00 limit. Capital One gave me a chance to prove myself. In time I know my limit will increase, because I plan to use this card responsibly, not going crazy like it is free money.

I did that same thing. I have been paying min payments for over a year and got a credit report from the people out in Texas and it has cap one listed and the status say’s (never late).I meant to re-build my credit and will continue to do so. At this time I am increasing my payments and will be paid off in 4 months and will then pay off balances at the end of the month from now on. I paid the min payments on purpose just to show them I would never be late. I have not been and I am proud of that.

good going andy-treat them right as they have done with you.

I love Capital One Credit Cards. I have 2 Capital One Venture Cards. One personal and one business.

web skye-i agree with you-capital one could not be better to its customers–we go in knowing all about low credit limits etc but no one begged any of us to apply for their cards–personally i would be more stricter if i were cap one on giving people with bankruptcies a new card y people who dont pay dont need a new caed whether its a high limit or low–they have established their game plan for the credit card game and they are playing defensively–good c=going cap one-stay strong so i can be with you for a long time-and web skye-good going and enjoy cap one

One more question. What do you mean by a annual fee? Is that a fee I have to pay once a year towards my credit card?

It does say annual, which means once a year.

How much do you ask for a security deposit? I claimed bankruptcy over a year a go and want to build my credit. And what will be the amount you will give me on my credit card with capital one.

I also filed for bankruptcy about a year ago. I just got approved for $300 unsecured line and a chance to start building my credit back.

I love Capital One! i have been with them for 12 years. They are very understanding when I have requests for transfer balances and lower interest rates. I will only hold this card and another one I will not name here. Capital One has great customer service as well. I have not had any problems with them for the last 12 years and I hold platinum! 🙂

dana-right on-hang with them-they are thegreatest

I am 35 years old and have been trying to rebuild my credit history after a bankruptcy at the tender age of 19 due to an uninsured car accident and large student loan balances. Capital One is the only company that was willing to give me the chance to prove that I am now a responsible adult. Thanks to Capital One, my credit is being rebuilt and I can actually see myself with a decent credit rating, a car loan (with a decent interest rate) and possibly even home ownership.

I made some really irresponsible decisions in my young adult life. I am truly grateful for Capital One’s willingness to help me to finally build the credit I’ve never had.

My wife and I recently decided to contact Capital One to create two secured credit cards. We sent several thousand dollars to open the accounts. Soon after we filed a bankruptcy. Capital One cancelled our cards, even though they were not included in the bankruptcy.

We understood that Capital One made a business decision. We of course asked for our money back. Capital One said they could not return our money. We went round and round, until they told us that we had to send proof that they were not in the bankruptcy. We sent three letters and our lawyer sent two letters. Then, they said there was a disputed charge, so they could not release the funds, even though no charge was ever made against the credit card.

Then, they said that they could keep our money until the bankruptcy was discharged (over a year) per the contract. My wife, God love her, keeps all records. When she pulled out the contract and asked for the paragraph and line, they could not. Then they actually said they could not give us that paragraph/line over the phone for security reasons, we would need to formally request that in writing. Yes, they actually said that.

So, my wife and I are not mad anymore, now we are on a mission. This is obviously something they do a lot to consumers, as multiple service agents say the same types of things. So we are filing suit Friday. I want to show this reprehensible practice for what it is, stealing. I want to know if there are others out there who have had this happen to them. Please contact us if so. The more we can prove, the larger the suit we can bring.

We’re a group of marketing students from McGill University doing an analysis of Capital One’s customer service. Participation in the following survey would greatly be appreciated and will take less than 5 minutes. Every response is anonymous and confidential. Thank you!

https://qtrial.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_a3GRC4aInxnDizW