Credit Card Credit Card Reviews

Capital One Walmart Rewards Mastercard Review

overall rating
2.8

Investopedia is committed to providing our readers with unbiased product recommendations. We may receive compensation when you click on links to products, but this doesn't affect how we rate, review, and rank them.

If you regularly shop at Walmart, the no-annual-fee Capital One Walmart Rewards Mastercard is aimed at you, beginning with its unlimited rewards of 2 points per dollar spent on Walmart-related purchases, restaurants, and travel. Unlike some other retail credit cards, there’s no upfront cash or points reward. There is, however, a special rate of 5 points per dollar spent on Walmart purchases in the first year, provided you use the card with the Walmart Pay app.

Capital One® Walmart Rewards™ Mastercard

overall rating
3.7
Capital One® Walmart Rewards™ Mastercard
On Capital One's Secured Site.

Current Offer:

Earn 5% back in Walmart stores for the first 12 months when you use your Capital One Walmart Rewards Card with Walmart Pay - the quick and secure way to pay with your phone at Walmart.

Recommended Credit Score Our recommended ranges are based off of the FICO® Score 8 credit-scoring model. Credit score is one of the many factors lenders review in considering your application.
350 579
580 669
670 739
740 799
800 850
Good - Excellent
Regular APR (%) 17.99% - 26.99% variable
Annual Fee $0
Rewards Earning Rate Earn 5% at Walmart.com, the Walmart app, and on Walmart grocery pickup and delivery. Earn 2% back on purchases at Walmart stores, Walmart & Murphy USA Fuel Stations, and on dining and travel purchases. Earn 1% back on all other purchases.
Balance Transfer Fee 3% of the amount of each transferred balance that posts to your account at a promotional APR. $0 for transfers at the standard APR.
how this card stacks up
When compared among all rewards cards in our database:
Rewards
Benefits
Low Fees
Security/Customer Experience
Low Interest
worst best

Full Review of Capital One Walmart Rewards Mastercard

Pros
  • High rewards on Walmart purchases online and in the first year

  • No caps on rewards at the highest rates

Cons
  • The high Walmart rewards are short-lived

  • Requires better credit than many store credit cards

Pros Explained

  • High Walmart Rewards In The First Year and Online: The card offers 5 points per dollar spent back at Walmart stores during the first 12 months when you use your card with Walmart Pay, the retailer’s mobile payments app. You earn the same rewards rate with no time limit on Walmart.com and the Walmart app, including on grocery pickup and delivery. In all cases, points are each worth $0.01. 
  • No Caps on Those Highest Rewards: The lack of spending limits on the card’s effective 5% rewards rate is a plus. Other cards typically have caps on their highest earnings and often charge a fee. For example, the Blue Cash Preferred card from American Express offers 6% back at U.S. supermarkets, but that rate is capped at $6,000 spent each year—an ample amount for most people, admittedly—and the card charges a $95 annual fee.

Cons Explained

  • The High Walmart Store Rewards are Short-Lived: After the first year, that bountiful 5 points-per-dollar rewards rate on in-Walmart store purchases drops to just 2 points, or an effective 2% back. Compare that with the Target RedCard, which permanently offers a 5% discount on most in-store and online purchases with the retailer. The 5-points rate does continue with online/Walmart app purchases, and on grocery pickup and delivery, which is certainly welcome. But if you do most of your Walmart shopping in stores, this limitation might be disappointing.
  • Requires Better Credit Than Many Other Store Credit Cards: Store credit cards often cater to people with fair or poor credit. The Capital One Walmart Rewards Card, however, requires good to excellent credit for approval since it is a general use credit card that can be used anywhere Mastercard. If you don't qualify, you will be automatically considered for the Walmart Rewards card, which offers the same introductory and ongoing rewards rates on Walmart purchases but isn’t accepted anywhere else outside of Walmart. (That’s not a major setback, though, given the modest 1% rate the Capital One Walmart Rewards earns on non-Walmart purchases.)   

This Card is Best For

  • Avatar for Cash Back Strategist Persona
    Seeks to maximize cash back earnings across spending categories
    Cash Back Strategist
  • Avatar for Annual Fee Averse Persona
    Resists or refuses an annual fee on principle or due to cost
    Annual Fee Averse
  • Avatar for Head of Household Persona
    Primarily responsible for household grocery and other major purchases
    Head of Household

While the Capital One Walmart Rewards is widely accepted, it's designed for people who regularly shop at Walmart, whether virtually or physically. It offers far higher rewards for purchases at the giant retailer than for those elsewhere, which earn an unremarkable 1 point per dollar spent.

The card also favors those digitally inclined consumers, given its ongoing rate of 5 points per dollar spent for website and app purchases, along with an introductory offer of that same rate for a year, provided you use Walmart Pay, the store’s mobile payment platform. 

Finally, this card is a respectable choice for travel, beginning with its 2% rewards on travel and dining purchases. It also doesn’t charge a foreign transaction fee, and its Mastercard affiliation gives it wide acceptance globally. 

Capital One Walmart Rewards Mastercard Bonus

The card doesn't offer a traditional bonus, such as a cash-back offer or a discount on your first purchase. There is, however, a 12-month promotional period (after you sign up) in which you earn 5 points per dollar spent—a bonus of 2 points over the regular rate—on all in-store Walmart purchases made with your card. To qualify, however, you must be willing to download Walmart Pay and use the Capital One Walmart Rewards card through that mobile app. 

Rewards Earning Details

On an ongoing basis, you’ll earn 5 points per dollar spent on Walmart.com and Walmart app purchases, as well as on grocery pickup and delivery, and 2 points per dollar spent at Walmart stores, Walmart and Murphy USA fuel stations, and restaurant and travel purchases. You earn one point per dollar spent on all other purchases.

Rewards Redemption Details

This card doesn’t allow you to receive rewards as cash in a bank account. Rather, Capital One allows you to redeem your points as ongoing statement credits, gift cards, or directly for a travel purchase. You can also receive a statement credit for a specific purchase, provided you request that within 90 days of the transaction posting. In all cases, points are redeemed at 1 cent apiece. 

You can redeem your points online, through the mobile app, or by calling Capital One, depending on your redemption choice. 

How to Maximize Your Rewards

The make the most on this card, you should of course use it every time you shop at Walmart. And when you do, consider making purchases online or via an app to potentially boost your earnings. 

To maximize the value of the introductory promotion, which requires using Walmart Pay to earn 5-points-per-dollar rewards, download the payment app to your smartphone as soon as receiving the card. 

Also, consider if you might shift some of your Walmart purchases from in-store to online or the Walmart app to earn an additional 3 points per dollar spent. Doing that needn’t necessarily involve waiting or paying for shipping. For example, a wide range of goods can be ordered online or through the Walmart app and picked up on the same day at a local Walmart store. 

To illustrate how much these techniques can boost your rewards, let’s assume you’re the typical Walmart shopper—who spent $55 per visit to the store in 2015, according to Perfect Price—and you shop at the store every week. That yields annual spending at the store of about $2,860. That would earn you points worth $53 if you used the Capital One Walmart Rewards in-store. Yet you’d more than double those earnings, to a total of $143, by either using the card in the first year via Walmart Pay or online—say, to order at Walmart.com and then pick up your order in a nearby store. 

Standard Benefits

  • Travel accident insurance
  • Extended warranty protection
  • Complimentary concierge service
  • Travel assistance services
  • No foreign transaction fees

Cardholder Experience

Capital One was rated third in J.D. Power’s 2019 Credit Card Customer Satisfaction Study, behind only Discover and American Express. 

The bank provides free access to your VantageScore credit score through its CreditWise program, but you don’t need a Capital One card to register for the free score. The VantageScore isn't widely used among major lenders, though, and many credit card issuers offer free access to your FICO score, which lenders use more frequently in credit decisions.

Capital One provides 24/7 customer service, which is standard among credit card issuers. You can reach the customer service team at 800-227-4825 or at the number on the back of your card.

For account management, use the card issuer's website or mobile app, which was ranked No. 2 among national card issuers by J.D. Power in its 2019 U.S. Banking Mobile App Satisfaction Study.

Security Features

Capital One offers two valuable security features that aren't standard among major card issuers. The first is the ability to lock your card from the mobile app, which can come in handy if you misplace it. You can also unlock the card once you find it. 

Second, the bank allows you to create virtual credit card numbers when you’re shopping online. You can create a different number for each online retailer, even during the checkout process, and you can lock and unlock your virtual card numbers at any time. 

Our Verdict

This Walmart credit card appears clearly aimed at competing with Target's Red card, which offers a universal and unlimited 5% discount on Target purchases. Yet the Capital One Walmart Rewards offers the equivalent rewards on in-store purchases only for the first year of the account, and only if you’re prepared to use Walmart Pay, the retailer’s payment app. The card's rewards also accumulate as points. All in all, the card has a far more complex rewards arrangement than Target’s instant 5% discount at the register.

But while the Capital One Walmart Rewards likely won't get many Target shoppers to switch allegiances, it offers enough to be worthwhile for Walmart regulars. If you're already a loyal Walmart shopper, you can earn rewards—excellent in the first year, decent after that—without changing much at all about how you shop.

That said, while the Capital One Walmart Rewards also functions as a full-service Mastercard, the card doesn't offer a lot beyond its bonus rewards on Walmart-related spending. So if you’re looking for a card with more features or you just want better rewards rates on broader categories, this one might not be for you.

It might, though, be a useful companion to another credit card that has a relatively high rewards rate on all your non-Walmart spending. You could, as examples, also acquire the Citi Double Cash card, which offers 1% back on all purchases and another 1% when you pay your bill, or the Chase Freedom Unlimited, which will give you 1.5% back on everything. One of those cards plus the Capital One Walmart Rewards would allow you to take advantage of the Capital One Walmart Rewards card's rates when using that card for Walmart purchases, especially in the first year of ownership. And then also getting to enjoy better rewards on all other spending than a mere point per dollar spent—which is the bare minimum in rewards for the credit card marketplace these days.

Apply Now
For Capital One® Walmart Rewards™ Mastercard
on Capital One's Secured Site.
Compare This Card
See how this card compares to similar cards
CURRENT CARD
Capital One® Walmart Rewards™ Mastercard
overall rating
2.8
Recommended Credit Score Our recommended ranges are based off of the FICO® Score 8 credit-scoring model. Credit score is one of the many factors lenders review in considering your application.
350 579
580 669
670 739
740 799
800 850
Good - Excellent
Regular APR (%) 17.99% - 26.99% variable
Annual Fee $0
Rewards Earning Rate Earn 5% at Walmart.com, the Walmart app, and on Walmart grocery pickup and delivery. Earn 2% back on purchases at Walmart stores, Walmart & Murphy USA Fuel Stations, and on dining and travel purchases. Earn 1% back on all other purchases.
Investopedia Credit Card Rating Methodology
Investopedia is committed to delivering the best credit card recommendations in the industry. We’ll tell you when a card is good, we’ll tell you when a card is bad, and we’ll only call a card the best if we would recommend it to our friends or family members.
Overall Star Rating Explained
To rate credit cards we objectively assess, score and weight nearly 100 individual card features which roll up into five major feature sets: fees, interest, rewards, benefits and security/customer service. Here’s how we weighted those feature sets for the overall star rating of a card:
We have applied our proprietary rating methodology to every generally-accepted credit card in the U.S. domestic market to allow consumers to make fully informed choices. It’s important to note that for our overall score that we make a number of assumptions about how you would be using your credit card:
  1. While we make no assumption as to whether balances are carried on a given card we do assign varying weights to all credit cards’ introductory APR (if present) in addition to the regular, long term purchase and balance transfer interest rates.
  2. We utilize BLS (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics) income and average category spending data to calculate annual earnings rates for rewards cards that offer cash back, points or miles rewards at a set rate on all spending or in consideration of bonus rewards for certain spending categories, like gasoline, groceries, restaurants or travel.
  3. We determine the maximum points value of rewards cards by dividing the points, cash back or miles required to exchange for the retail price of the most valuable redemption option (for example, in the case of a card that offers a domestic roundtrip airline ticket as a redemption option vs. another redemption option of lesser value that requires the same amount of points or miles to acquire, we would base the rewards value on the airline ticket).
  • Cards that are selected best overall in their respective categories generally feature most if not all of the following attributes:
  • Low or Reasonable Fees Credit card fees come in many forms but the primary ones involve those for annual card membership and balance transfer. There are a myriad of reward and non-reward card options that charge no annual fee but for the many that do assess an annual fee the cost is often justified by their lucrative ongoing rewards and initial signup bonuses. Balance transfer fees are occasionally waived during introductory periods with certain cards, a factor which is heavily and positively weighted in our scoring model for cards offering this benefit. When charged, balance transfer fees range between 3% - 5%, which we grade accordingly. Other standard fees can generally be avoided, such as those for paying late or taking cash advances but we rate those relative to other cards in the market for reference, though with less weight assigned
  • Competitive Interest Many cards offer 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers for varying lengths and then revert to a permanent or regular APR (based on a variable rate tied to the prime rate) that applies to any balances not paid in full. We rate both introductory APR percentage and length (in months) along with the midpoint of the variable regular APR interest rate range.
  • Valuable Rewards Credit card reward programs can be based on cash back, points or travel rewards (which can be generic or travel partner-specific, as with airline and hotel co-brand card programs). For cards that offer rewards we determine the value per dollar spent along with average redemption values and assign more favorable ratings to cards that offer superior consumer value. We also assign value to sign-up bonus offers and their initial spending requirements, when present.
  • Excellent Benefits Credit card benefits cover a range of offerings like concierge service, TSA Pre-check, auto rental coverage, travel accident insurance, lost luggage assistance and free credit scores. We rate cards on the number and level of over a dozen standard and upscale benefits and provide extra weighting emphasis for those travel-related perks that apply to premium travel cards when present.
  • Solid Security/Customer Service Security and customer service features like lost or stolen card replacement, being able to lock one’s card from an issuer app and 24 hour customer support are becoming more standard across the card market and we provide a significant amount of weighting to features in this area.
  • You can also read the full version of our methodology for a more in-depth look at how we assess cards and award them the best in various categories.