Capital One Walmart Reward Card Review

Walmart has teamed up with one of the most prolific credit card issuers to bring you the Capital One Walmart Rewards Mastercard. As you’d expect, the juiciest rewards are tied to purchases at the retailer. Online buys through Walmart.com and in-store purchases with the Walmart Pay app earn the highest rewards, but brick-and-mortar deals only last for the first 12 months of card ownership. 

You can also earn the maximum rewards by utilizing the retailer’s grocery pickup and delivery program, but spending in that category tends to be minimal for most businesses outside of foodservice. Redemptions are somewhat flexible in that they don’t expire, and you can use them to book travel through the Capital One portal — or receive a statement credit.

While this is a consumer card per se, it could help small businesses with cost-cutting in the acquisition of office supplies and more at Walmart and its affiliates. If you spend a bunch in those categories, the big bonus earned can automatically shave $500 off $10,000 in annual purchases. If you’re a one-person shop that depends on travel to grow your business, you’ll leverage the next highest cash-back multiplier by using the card to pay for airfare, hotel bookings and meals on the road. Another $10,000 dished out on those categories combined will grab you another $200 in cash back for an average return of 3.5% on the entire $20,000 spend.

Down to business with the Capital One Walmart Rewards Mastercard

  • APR: This card charges one of three variable APRs: 17.99%, 23.24% or 26.99%, with no special introductory offer on purchases or balance transfers.
  • Annual Fee: $0
  • Reward Rates: The Capital One Walmart card earns you 5% cash back from online purchases, 2% in Walmart stores after the introductory period, 2% on dining and travel expenses and 1% everyplace else that accepts Mastercard.
  • Intro Offer:  For the initial 12 months that you hold the card, you’ll earn in-store rewards of 5% cash back, but you’ll need to use the Walmart Pay app to receive that incentive.  

Perks and features of the Capital One Walmart Rewards Mastercard

  • Capital One mobile app: You can view transactions, check balances and make payments from anywhere at anytime if you have an Internet connection and a mobile device.
  • Foreign transaction fees: If you travel internationally, you won’t pay any foreign transaction fees, which can amount to as much as 3% with other cards. While the card isn’t travel-oriented, this feature helps save some dollars on trips abroad.
  • Zero fraud liability: You will receive protections that remove you from liability for unauthorized purchases. You can also receive text or email messages that alert you to suspicious activity on the card, and Capital One helps resolve any disputes regarding erroneous charges.
  • Flexible redemption options: With your cash-back rewards, you can choose to receive a statement credit or redeem with gift cards from Walmart, Sam’s Club or any of its other related businesses.

Is the Capital One Walmart Rewards Mastercard right for my business?

Loyalty to the big-box behemoth is the tipping point for business owners evaluating the Capital One Walmart Rewards Mastercard. If you shop at the store frequently, the 5% cash-back rewards will help your budget, but you’ll need to transition to the e-commerce platform after the first year of ownership. Outside Walmart, you’ll still earn rewards regardless of where you shop, so if you’re looking for a hassle-free way to gather some cash back, this card will meet expectations. 

Overall, the Capital One Walmart card will work well for self-employed, home-office denizens who can scoop up discounts on ink, toner, paper, etc. Annual rewards from purchases everywhere may be enough to secure a free round-trip ticket or hotel stay, and for small business, that helps the bottom line.

Since this is not a business card, large companies that have many employees won’t see this option as a good fit. You won’t be able to issue cards to employees who can use the card and add to aggregate annual expenses that will help earn even greater rewards. The welcome offer is paltry compared to other cash-back cards, and if you wanted to buy a laptop or office furniture out of the gate, no 0% financing plan exists. Also, APRs run on the high side, so carrying a balance can quickly negate any cash-back bonuses you accumulate.

For small businesses shopping for a viable cash-back alternative, the Chase Ink Business Cash Credit Card offers an attractive welcome bonus of $500 after you spend $3,000 in the first three months after opening the account. You’d need to spend $10,000 at Walmart to achieve the same result. After that, the 5% cash-back bonus applies to office supply stores and cable, phone or Internet services up to an annual cap of $25,000 combined. So, it doesn’t matter what store you choose to equip your office from — you’re still reaping that big multiplier bonus with a few extra qualifying categories to boot.

The bottom line

If you’re a Walmart shopper and own a small business, the Capital One Walmart Rewards Mastercard can be very convenient. Physical locations are abundant, but the biggest bonuses come from buying through the retailer’s e-commerce portal. Aside from rewards tied directly to Walmart, you’ll receive favorable cash back on restaurant and gas purchases, and a lesser bonus in all other categories.

The need for a true small business credit card might pull you in another direction toward programs that offer alluring welcome bonuses and no-interest balance transfers. You won’t get these options with the Walmart card. If you count on credit cards to manage employee expense accounts and reap the benefits from total company spending, you’ll need to pivot elsewhere. There are many cards on the market that won’t tie your sweetest perks primarily to one retailer, so you can go shop wherever the best deals arise.