Any conversation about credit card benefits is likely to include the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card.
With a great rewards program and perks that include both travel-focused and non-travel benefits, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is one of the best choices for frequent travelers. The card carries a $95 annual fee, but you’ll quickly get your money’s worth if you use all the benefits and meet the minimum spend requirement to earn its 60,000-point welcome bonus after spending $4,000 in the first three months .
Whether you already have the Chase Sapphire Preferred or are thinking about applying for it, here’s what you should know about its benefits.
Before You Start
Before you apply for any new credit card, you should always do your research to make sure it fits with your lifestyle and spending habits. Make sure you’re aware of the interest rate, fees and terms as well. Never spend more than you can afford, and try to pay off your balance on time and in full every month, or else interest and late fees can quickly cut into any rewards you may earn.
Chase Sapphire Preferred Benefits
Much of the Chase Sapphire Preferred’s value centers on earning and redeeming points.
There are a number of bonus categories in which you can earn boosted points values per dollar spent. Chase makes these categories pretty broad.
“Sapphire Preferred offers 3x points on dining at restaurants as well as on eligible delivery and takeout, and 2x points on a broad definition of travel — from the traditional airfare and hotels to taxis, trains, rideshare, toll bridges, parking lots, and more,” says Marleta Ross, general manager of Chase Sapphire. In addition, the card earns 5x points on travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3x points on select streaming services and online grocery purchases (not including Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs), and 1 point per dollar on everything else. Finally, the Chase Sapphire Preferred also offers 5x points on Lyft rides through March 2022.
You can redeem your points for cash back, gift cards, and purchases at Amazon.com or the Apple® Ultimate Rewards Store, but you’ll get the best deal by trading your points for free travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal or by transferring them to Chase’s travel partners.
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
- Intro bonus:60,000 points
- Annual fee:$95
- Regular APR:15.99%-22.99% Variable
- Recommended credit:670-850 (Good to Excellent)
- Apply Now At Chase’s secure site
American Express® Gold Card
The Chase Sapphire Preferred card comes with many great perks besides the rewards program. A lot of them are geared toward frequent travelers, though you’ll also find some lifestyle benefits as well. These include:
- A $50 annual hotel credit for stays purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards
- One year of complimentary DashPass, DoorDash’s subscription service (activate by March. 31, 2022)
- 5x points on Lyft rides through March 2022
- Anniversary point bonus equal to 10% of your total annual purchases over the previous year
- Trip cancellation/interruption insurance
- Rental car coverage
- Extended warranty protection
- 120 days of purchase protection
- No foreign transaction fees
The card also gives you access to My Chase Plan, which lets you break up purchases over $100 into fixed monthly payments. You don’t pay any interest on My Chase Plan purchases, but you do pay a fixed monthly fee.
One of the biggest benefits of Chase Sapphire Preferred is its sign-up bonus. If you spend at least $4,000 with the card within the first three months, you’ll get 60,000 bonus points. If you redeem those points toward travel through the Ultimate Rewards portal, they’re worth $750.
Though this is one of the best credit card deals on the market right now, remember that you’ll need to spend $4,000 to get it.
“Reward cards often attract people with a sign-up bonus, which usually involves spending a hefty amount up front to qualify. It’s important to not spend more than you can pay off,” says Courtney Nagle, a spokesperson for the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC).
However, if you’re planning to spend $4,000 in the next three months anyway and can afford it — for example, if you have a big purchase on the horizon — then putting the balance on your Chase Sapphire Preferred card can give you a big head start on earning your next free trip.
It’s important to note that you’re not eligible for this bonus if you currently have a Chase Sapphire card or have earned a new cardmember bonus from any Sapphire card in the last four years.
What You Can Get With Your Points
One of the biggest benefits of Chase Sapphire Preferred cards comes from the versatility of their points usage. Through Chase Ultimate Rewards, you can use your points for:
- Cash back
- Gift cards
- Purchases in the Apple® Ultimate Rewards Store
- Amazon.com orders
- Tickets to special events
And while you can usually exchange Chase Ultimate Rewards points at a rate of one point per cent, you get a 25% boost on your points if you book travel directly through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal.
The card’s new anniversary bonus gives you an extra boost in points — you’ll earn bonus points equal to 10% of the total purchases you made in the last year.
Alternatively, you can transfer points at a 1:1 value to more than a dozen of Chase’s travel partners:
- Aer Lingus, AerClub
- British Airways Executive Club
- Emirates Skywards®
- Flying Blue AIR FRANCE KLM
- Iberia Plus
- JetBlue TrueBlue
- Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer
- Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards®
- United MileagePlus®
- Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
- IHG® Rewards Club
- Marriott Bonvoy™
- World of Hyatt®
Transferring your points to an airline or hotel that partners with Chase can help you capitalize on any hotel or airline loyalty programs you participate in.
Chase also lets Sapphire Preferred cardholders get a points boost with their Pay Yourself Back℠ program in certain categories. Chase originally introduced this feature during the pandemic with a variety of redemption options, allowing card users to get more from their points while travel was off the table.
As of Oct. 1, Preferred points are worth 25% more when redeemed for statement credits after using your card on Airbnb and Away purchases, as well as for select charitable organizations.
Chase updates the Pay Yourself Back categories and redemption values periodically.
How To Qualify For a Chase Sapphire Preferred Card
You’ll typically need good to excellent credit to qualify for the best travel rewards cards, and the Chase Sapphire Preferred is no exception. You’ll need a credit score between 670 and 850, though there’s no way to know for sure if you’ll be approved or denied until you apply.
If your credit score isn’t high enough to qualify for the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you may want to sign up for a card with low or no credit score requirements in order to build credit. We recommend the Capital One QuicksilverOne Rewards Credit Card* and the Petal® 2 “Cash Back, No Fees” Visa® Credit Card*, which let you earn rewards while building credit. After your credit score improves, you can then sign up for more lucrative rewards cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred.
It’s worth noting that Chase has an unconfirmed “5/24 rule” for its credit card applications. In general, in order to qualify for a Chase credit card, you can’t have opened five or more personal credit cards in the past 24 months. Although Chase hasn’t officially acknowledged this rule, you should carefully consider the timing of each credit card application you submit — whether with Chase or another issuer — if you’re interested in the Chase Sapphire Preferred or any other Chase credit cards.
*All information about the Capital One QuicksilverOne Rewards Credit Card and Petal 2 “Cash Back, No Fees Visa Credit Card has been collected independently by NextAdvisor and has not been reviewed by the issuer.