Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card Review

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Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card Review

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"The #1 Travel Rewards Card"

A fantastic travel card with a generous sign-up bonus, good benefits, and dedicated customer service for a moderate annual fee.

Apply Now (at Chase's secure site)

Chances are you’ve seen your fair share of advertisements for the Chase Sapphire Preferred® card. Perhaps you’ve seen your friends using it to pay for their meal at dinner, or overheard your coworkers mention how they use their Chase Ultimate Reward points for free flights.

So what makes the Chase Sapphire Preferred card so special? Is it actually worth all of this hype?

The Chase Chase Sapphire Preferred card gives you an excellent earning rate of 2x points per $1 on all travel and dining purchases, flexible point redemption options, no foreign transaction fees, and great travel insurance coverage.

With benefits like these, it’s easy to see why this card is one of the best travel credit cards on the market and an excellent choice for any traveler.

Pros

  • Earns 2x points per $1 on all travel and dining purchases worldwide and 1 point per dollar on all other purchases
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs like United and Hyatt
  • Travel and car rental insurance

Cons

  • $95 annual fee
  • No elite benefits like airport lounge access or hotel elite status

Card Snapshot

The Ideal Cardholder

Woman in Santorini Greece
Redeem your Ultimate Reward points for a dream trip to Santorini. Image courtesy of Maridav via Shutterstock.

Do you love exploring the world? Do you love trying your city’s newest restaurants with friends? Are you new to the world of points and miles and want a card with flexible redemption options?

Then the Chase Sapphire Preferred could be a great card for you! With 2x points per $1 on travel and dining, you can earn more value for the money you’re already spending —  each purchase getting you closer to your next vacation.

Great Card If

  • You want a card with flexible redemption options
  • You spend a lot on travel and dining out
  • You travel frequently for work
  • You’re new to the world of points and miles
  • You frequently use rideshare services (like Uber or Lyft)

Don't Get If

Card Fees

  • Annual Fee
    • $95
  • Foreign Transaction Fees
    $0
  • Interest Rates
    • 17.99% - 24.99% Variable
  • Balance Transfers
    • 17.99% - 24.99% Variable
  • Cash Advance APR
    • 26.99% Variable

How to Earn More Points

Travel & Dining Expenses

Seeing as the bonus categories on the Chase Chase Sapphire Preferred card are travel and dining, you’ll want to make this card your primary option for all purchases that fall within those categories.

So what exactly counts as a “travel” purchase with Chase? You’ll be happy to know that Chase’s definition of travel is quite broad — so you’ll have plenty of opportunities to earn 2x points.

Purchases that fall within the category include:

  • airlines
  • hotels/motels (including Airbnb)
  • timeshares
  • campgrounds
  • car rental agencies
  • cruise lines
  • travel agencies
  • discount travel sites
  • trains
  • buses
  • taxis (including Uber and Lyft)
  • limousines
  • ferries
  • toll bridges and highways
  • parking lots and garages

Hot Tip: You can monitor each of your transactions via your online Chase account. This will allow you to be certain you’re receiving the 2x multiplier on qualified purchases — and has the additional benefit of helping you keep track of your spending.

Chase Shopping Portal

If you prefer to skip the crowds and do all of your shopping online, then you’re in luck. With the Chase Ultimate Rewards shopping portal you can earn 2x, 5x, or even 20x points per $1 spent with companies like Apple, Bose, and Nike.

Just make sure to click through the Ultimate Rewards shopping portal first before heading to your chosen website to ensure you get the bonus.

Adding More Ultimate Rewards-Earning Cards

Adding more Ultimate Rewards-earning cards allows you to optimize your spending with further bonus categories. Take the Chase Freedom Unlimited®, which earns 1.5x Ultimate Rewards points on all purchases.

This gives cardholders a 50% increase in points earned compared to the 1x earned with the Chase Sapphire Preferred on purchases outside of the travel and dining categories.

Hot Tip: An optimal strategy, in this case, would be to use your Chase Sapphire Preferred to earn 2x on all travel and dining purchases, and the Chase Freedom Unlimited® to earn 1.5x on all purchases falling outside of those 2 categories.

Interested in learning about more Chase Ultimate Rewards cards? Detailed below are some of our recommended options.

Recommended Chase Cards (Personal)

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card - This is our favorite beginners travel rewards card which has a 60,000 point bonus (highest ever) after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

This sign up bonus is worth $750 in travel purchases (flights, hotels, car rentals etc) when you redeem your points through Chase's travel portal, which works like Expedia. The bonus alone could get you multiple round-trip flights or hotel stays.
Chase Sapphire Reserve® - Consider this premium card if you want to get into a lot of airport lounges. The current sign up bonus is 50,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. You'll also get a $300 travel credit per year which wipes away a big chunk of the $450 annual fee.
Chase Freedom Unlimited® - A simple, no annual fee card that earns you 3% cash-back on all purchases in your first year (up to $20,000 spent), then 1.5% on all purchases after that. Just know that you won't get any travel benefits or the ability to earn bonus points with this card.

Recommended Chase Cards (Business)

Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card - This is our #1 recommended business card and comes with a whopping 80,000 sign up bonus after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after account opening. This bonus is worth $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards for travel purchases (flights, hotels etc). Also, if you pay for your cell phone bill with this card, you can get up to $600 in cell phone insurance coverage per year.
Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card - earn $500 bonus cash back after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after account opening. In addition, get up to 5% cash back on a range of business expenses. A simple, $0 annual fee card.

Bottom Line: Overall, there are many methods you can pursue to rack up the Chase Ultimate Rewards points.  For even more ways to earn, check out our guide on the Best Ways to Earn Lots of Chase Ultimate Reward Points.

How to Use These Points for Max Value

Couple Smiling Walking From Airport
Strategic use of your Ultimate Rewards points can help you travel like a VIP! Image courtesy of Roman Samborski via Shutterstock.

When it comes to Chase Ultimate Rewards points, there are 6 main redemption options that vary in flexibility and value.

Transferring to Airline or Hotel Partners

Chase makes it easy for you to transfer your Ultimate Reward points to a number of airline and hotels that they’ve partnered with. For the most part, these transfers happen almost instantaneously and can make for some very high-value redemptions.

If you’ve never transferred points before, or you’re new to the world of points and miles, it can seem like a daunting task. However, it’s not nearly as difficult as it may seem. With just a little extra work, utilizing transfer partners can help you get huge value from your points.

If you need some help getting started, check out our guide on Chase’s Transfer Partners and How to Use Them.

Using Points Through the Chase Ultimate Rewards Travel Portal

This method is great for travelers looking for simplicity and flexibility. With the Ultimate Rewards Travel Portal, there’s no need to worry about transfers, comparing point values, finding award space, or blackout dates.

When booking through the travel portal with your Chase Sapphire Preferred card, your points are worth a fixed 1.25 cents each — meaning 60,000 Ultimate Rewards points are worth $750 in travel purchases.

Through the portal, you can use your points to book flights, hotels, rental cars, cruises, and other experiences.

For those who aren’t interested in dealing with point transfers, the Ultimate Rewards Travel Portal offers a simple way to book travel while still providing good value for your points.

Redeeming for Gift Cards

You also have the option of redeeming your points for gift cards from over 150 different brands. Unless a deal or promotion is being run with a certain brand, your points are worth 1 cent each for the gift card of your choice — meaning a $50 Starbucks gift card would cost 5,000 Ultimate Rewards points.

Redeeming for Cash-Back

If you’re not interested in using your points toward travel, you can easily redeem them for cash-back at a fixed rate of 1 cent per point. You can use the cash-back as a statement credit toward your purchases, or have the money deposited straight into your bank account.

Use Points With Amazon or Apple

If you have an Ultimate Rewards-earning card linked as a payment option on your Amazon or Apple account, you’ll have the option to pay for your item using points. As with previous options, your points will be worth 1 cent each.

Chase Experience Portal

With the Chase Experience Portal, you can use your points to book VIP access to select sports, entertainment, and dining experiences. You can purchase experiences with points or cash, and point redemption options are most often valued at 1 cent each.

Hot Tip: At Upgraded Points, we don’t recommend redeeming your points for cash-back, Amazon purchases, or any option that only earns you 1 cent per point in value. Instead, we highly recommend transferring your points to airline and hotel travel partners, so you can use your Chase points for maximum value.

Chase Airline Transfer Partners

Chase Airline Transfer PartnerMin TransferTransfer Ratio
(Chase > Airline)
Transfer Time
Aer Lingus AerClub1,0001:1Almost Instant
British Airways Executive Club1,0001:1Almost Instant
Flying Blue AIR FRANCE KLM
1,0001:11 hour
Emirates Skywards1,0001:1New, pending reports
Iberia Plus1,0001:1Almost Instant
JetBlue1,0001:1Almost Instant
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer
1,0001:11-2 days
Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards1,0001:1Almost Instant
United Airlines MileagePlus1,0001:1Almost Instant
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club1,0001:1Almost Instant

Chase Hotel Transfer Partners

Chase Hotel Transfer PartnerMin TransferTransfer RatioTransfer Time
World of Hyatt
1,0001:1Almost Instant
IHG Rewards Club1,0001:11 day
Marriott Rewards1,0001:12 days

Competitor Cards

Interested in the Chase Sapphire Preferred but curious to learn about your other options? Check out these other offerings:

Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card

There’s a lot to love about the Venture card. With the introduction of airline transfer partners, 10x points earned with Hotels.com, and 2x on all other purchases, it’s easy to see why this is a direct competitor of the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

If you’re a Hotels.com loyalist or the majority of your daily spending comes from purchases outside of dining and travel categories, then the Venture card might be a great option for you.

Bank of America® Premium Rewards® Credit Card

The Premium Rewards card offers a nice points-earning structure, along with simplicity and flexibility when it comes to redeeming those points.

The Premium Rewards card is a strong choice for travelers who already have a banking relationship with Bank of America. Depending on the balance in their checking, savings, or investment accounts, customers earn a higher point multiplier when using the card.

Citi Premier℠ Card

The Citi Premier card is one of the few travel credit cards on the market to offer a high return on gas purchases. This makes the card an excellent choice for those who drive often for work or love taking road-trips.

FAQ

What is the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card? Why get the card? Is it worth it?

This credit card offers great earning potential for restaurants and travel-related expenses while offering a variety of high-value redemption options.

These include 20% flight discounts (at $0.0125 per point), transfers to partners, and the ability to combine with the Chase Freedom®, Chase Freedom Unlimited®, Chase Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card, and Chase Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card to earn even more points.

Put another way, get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals, and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel!

You will likely find benefit in the card if you are the type who utilizes these categories and travels frequently.

Points can be redeemed for a variety of travel partners, and can be transferred directly to other loyalty accounts when you need points elsewhere.

If you can justify spending enough on the card to warrant the $95 annual fee, then this card is most definitely worth it.

Is this a VISA card?

Yes, this card is processed through VISA (like all current Chase cards).

What are the benefits of the card?

This credit card earns 1x-2x points per dollar. The higher earning potential is for all travel- and dining-related expenses except for gas.

These points accrue in the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and can be used on shopping, purchasing travel tickets through the travel portal, or transferring to loyalty accounts of partner airlines.

Flights booked with the travel portal can be purchased for 20% off, allowing you to save money on your purchase. The card also offers a concierge service to help with a variety of tasks.

Finally, the card offers a variety of travel insurances such as travel accident, trip cancellation and interruption, auto rental, lost luggage, and trip delay insurance.

Other services include Global Lifeline for lost cards, travel emergency services, and warranty protection.

Does the card use Ultimate Rewards?

Yes. Chase rewards come in the form of points that are deposited into your Chase Ultimate Rewards account.

Who are the travel partners of this card?

The travel partners are as follows. Each one will accept transferred Chase points into their own loyalty programs at a 1:1 ratio (point to miles):

Airline partners include Air France/KLM, British Airways, Iberia, Aer Lingus, JetBlue, Singapore Airlines, Southwest AirlinesUnited Airlines, and Virgin Atlantic. Hotel partners include Hyatt, IHG, and Marriott.

Do the reward points expire?

No, as long as your account stays active and in good standing. Keep your bills paid and in good health, and you will never lose your points.

When do the points post to your account?

Your points earned for purchases post at the end of each month with your card statement. Bonus points from other places may take longer.

If you are waiting for points to transfer to travel partners, Chase says the transfers may take up to a week. Points must be transferred in 1,000-mile increments.

What is the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card's annual fee?

The typical annual fee is $95 per year.

Is there a foreign transaction fee on the card?

No, there are no foreign transaction fees.

Is the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card a 0% APR card?

No. This card has a variable APR (see card fees above).

How much is 1 point worth?

A point is worth $0.01 if you use it directly for something like statement credit. However, a point’s value can vary from $0.01 to more than $0.02 if transferred to airline partners and redeemed for international travel.

How do you redeem rewards for this card?

Simply log in to your Chase Account, then click on any place that says “Ultimate Rewards,” and it will take you to the next screen where you can select which card you want to access rewards for.

All your account information will be available on this screen, and you can switch or transfer points between accounts.

How do you transfer Chase points to United (or any other airline partner)?

When you are in the Ultimate Rewards portal, go to the “Use Points” menu and click on “Transfer to Travel Partners.”

On this next screen, it lists all possible partners and allows you to quickly select how many you want to transfer (in 1,000-mile increments). Allow up to a week for points to transfer.

You can only transfer points to yourself or an authorized card user.

How do you destroy the card?

While the recommended way to dispose of your card is to simply request closure of your account and send the card back in an envelope, you can also try a number of different methods.

We recommend exposure to dragon fire or an avada kedavra spell (kidding!). You could even try the fireplace.

What is the card made out of? Is the card metal?

Yes, the card uses a proprietary blend of metal with a blue finish that creates a unique appearance. It is thicker and heavier than most of its plastic counterparts.

Which is better, the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card or Chase Freedom®?

You’ll find higher-value redemption options with the Chase Sapphire Preferred, but it is best to use both cards simultaneously.

The Freedom has no annual fee and offers 5% cash-back in certain categories, which is greater than what the Chase Sapphire Preferred offers. You can combine all your points from both cards to use for valuable redemptions.

What is the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card's login?

You’ll use the typical Chase bank login.

How do you cancel the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card?

To cancel the card, call your membership services number on the back and tell them you want to cancel the card. Be sure to use or transfer all points before you do, or else they will be forfeited.

Also, if your annual fee has already hit for the year, you will need to pay it, so cancel before your yearly anniversary if you need to.

Jarrod West

About Jarrod West

Born and raised just outside of Cincinnati, Jarrod became fascinated with using points and miles as the perfect way to visit dream destinations without breaking the bank. Thanks to points and miles, Jarrod was able to spend 3 months traveling Europe financed nearly entirely with points and miles; while flying in premium cabins and staying in 5-star hotels along the way. To date, Jarrod has traveled to 16 countries and 22 US states.

Advertisement

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees

Disclaimer: Any comments listed below are not from the bank advertiser, nor have they been reviewed or approved by them. No responsibility will be taken by the bank advertiser for these comments.

2 comments

  1. stephen micheal · June 6, 2019 · Reply

    Now I know what chase sapphire preferred card is all about and how much it will cost to get this card. Thanks for passing along this nice information.

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