More Changes to the Capital One Aspire Travel World Elite MasterCard

UPDATE- (9:00am Oct. 15, 2015) I just gave Capital One a call and they confirmed that existing cardholders will only be charged the old $120 annual fee, and only new applicants are on the hook for the $150 fee.   

We recently wrote about the positive changes with the elimination of the reward redemption tiers to the Capital One Aspire Travel World Elite MasterCard. Now you can get straight up 2% return on travel expenses, including partial redemptions. But all good things come with a catch. There is now an increased annual fee, from $120 to $150. Below are the new highlights of the credit card:

  • $150 annual fee
  • Earn 40,000 sign up bonus points after spending $1,000 within the first 3 months
  • Earn 2 points for every $1 spent on all purchases

The increased annual fee is making me re-thinking whether I want to retain this credit card or not, even though I am grandfathered from the old version, I should continue to receive my 10,000 anniversary bonus. That being said, I have until early in the new year before my annual fee is due again, so I will re-evaluate my spending habits when the time comes. I really wish that Capital One wouldn’t have raised the annual fee, but it was probably inevitable. You gotta give some to take some.

The sign up bonus is very generous though. The 40,000 sign up bonus points is essentially worth $400. I am also glad to see a spending requirement to achieve the sign up bonus. Personally, I like spending requirements, because it requires us to use the credit card, which helps justify the perks and benefits associated with the credit card.

I would note that the 40,000 sign up bonus will probably not stay around for too long as it might not be sustainable. So if you want to jump on this credit card, don’t wait too long to make a decision. At least keep the card for a year, maybe two, before deciding what to do with it.


Unfortunately, the increased annual fee is a real annoyance for me. Here is how I see it. If there is a requirement for minimum spending to qualify for a sign up bonus, why not have a spend requirement to have the annual fee waived as well. Something along the lines of $10,000 in spending per year on a credit card should be more than enough to help waive an annual fee.

UPDATE- Since finding out that I am grandfathered to only have to pay the $120 annual fee indefinitely, I will no doubt keep this card for as long as possible! Glad to have found this out!


  1. Are you sure the increased annual fee applies to current cardholders as well? I haven’t received any notice to that effect myself.

    1. Thanks for spotting that Amaru! I just gave Capital One a call. They will in fact honour the $120 annual fee for existing cardholders. This will only apply to new applicants. I will update the post.

  2. Hey Matthew…given this is the time of year when a lot of credit card offers come out, do you think Capital One will put on a promo of waiving the first year fee on top of the $400 sign up offer? Or is the $400 too good by itself. Looking to change out of my TD First Class that I’ve held since I came out years ago.


    1. Hey David, I have never seen Capital One offer a first year fee waived promotion on any of their products, so I highly doubt that we will see this any time in the near future.

      1. Thanks Matthew. My wife and I love to travel (at least two trips per year) so I feel a travel card is the best option for me. I spend approx. $50,000 per year on my current credit card. Given that we like to both cruise and go to all-inclusives, would this be the best card for me to get at this time? I’d rather not have 5 or 6 credit cards, just one or two.

        Thanks again…David

        1. Here’s a suggestion. Why not one of you sign up for the Capital One Aspire Travel World Elite MasterCard and another one with the BMO World Elite MasterCard. Let’s say you pay $150 annual fee with Cap One, but $400 sign up bonus. You spend half your spending on it, so that’s $25,000 spending or 50,000 points earned. That’s another $500 in cash back, combined with your $400 sign up bonus. For the BMO World Elite, just try to catch when they have a $300 sign up bonus during a first year fee waived promotion. Then you put the remaining $25,000 spending or 50,000 points earned. That’s another $800 ($300 + $500) worth of cash back that you can use towards your all-inclusive cruise. Final tally: $800 + $900 – $150 annual fee = $1,550 worth during the first year of having these credit cards.

          1. Nice…thanks Matthew. I like the idea. Then at the end of the first year, I can decide which of the two cards to keep. I have an 800+ credit score so I’m thinking of taking advantage of the sign up offers on the MBNA Best Western MasterCard (40,000 points) and the Marriott Rewards Visa too.

          2. Awesome! Yes, those are two great options as well. Enjoy your trip!

  3. Hi Matt
    Great blog! I’m looking for a credit card I can use for my new business expenses, doing consulting so expenses would be fairly low. Say $500 on average (gas, 407 and cell phone)

    What card would you recommend to store these business purchases on?

  4. Hi Michael…just in case you weren’t aware…Capital One discontinued this card effective today. No longer available on their website. Apparently those of us with this card, can continue to keep it, but no new applications are being taken. Regards, and keep up the great work.

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