Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card Review (Updated 2016)
The Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card is a reputable travel rewards credit card. Travel reward credit cards award you air miles or points to be redeemed for rebates used towards travel every time you make a purchase with the card. These cards provide a lot of value when used frequently and can be used for a wide variety of items and services. The Chase Sapphire card allows the user to earn rewards in the form of points every time a purchase is made with the card.
Our Favourite Things About This Card
- You will earn 50 000 bonus points after you spend $4000 on purchases within the first 3 month of card opening. The 50 000 bonus points are worth roughly $625 if you redeem the points through the Chase Ultimate Rewards program.
- You can earn an additional 5000 bonus points if you add another user to the card. The new user must use the card to make a purchase within the first 3 months of card opening.
- You will earn 2 points for every $1 spent on travel and restaurant purchases.
- The annual fee is waived for the first year, allowing you to use the card for free the first year. After the first year a $95 dollar annual fee applies.
- No foreign transaction fees: This card will not charge you if you use this card for purchases in other countries, making this card ideal to use when travelling.
- 1:1 point transfer: You are able to redeem your points with a 1:1 ratio to various frequent travel programs. This means that 1000 of your Chase Ultimate Rewards points are worth 1000 miles or points with Chase partner travel programs. Some of the Chase partner programs include the Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards, British Airways Executive Club, United MileagePlus, Mariott Rewards, and Virgin Atlantic Flying Club.
- Earn 20% off travel when you redeem your points for airfare, hotels, cruises, and car rentals through the Chase Ultimate Rewards program. For example a $625 flight would only cost you 50 000 points instead of 62 500 points
- Includes travel and purchase protection benefits, which includes trip cancellation, trip interruption insurance, as well as auto rental collision insurance, and purchase protection. These features allow the user to travel with confidence and add significant value to this card.
- Auto rental insurance: This card provides insurance that will cover you if there is an accident.
- Trip cancellation/interruption insurance: Any trip you book with this card will cover you for up to $10 000 if it has to be cancelled, or if your trip is interrupted for any reason.
Things We Do Not Like About This Card
- No 0% A.P.R. introductory offer. You will pay 16% to 23% variable A.P.R. as soon as you get this card. Many cards offer a 0% intro offer on purchases and balance transfer which add significant value to the card. However if you make your payments in full, you can avoid this interest completely.
- Cash advance fee: While this card does not have a foreign transaction fee, it does have a cash advance fee of either $10 or 5%, whichever is greater. Try at all costs to avoid withdrawing cash from ATM machines with this card or else it will cost you. This card also charges a 25% A.P.R. rate on the cash advances, which begins charging the interest as soon as you make the transaction, meaning you will be charged interest right away, making the fee even higher.
- Annual fee: While this card waives the annual fee for the first year, it charges a hefty $95 a year after. If you will not use this card frequently for travel and dining purchases, then the annual fee will out weigh the benefits with this card.
Who The Chase Sapphire Preferred Best Suits
- Those who travel frequently, and spend a lot of money at restaurants and dining, which will allow the user to get the most out of the rewards program.
- Big spenders who frequently fly with Chase partners such as United, Virgin Atlantic, or Southwest
How The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card Compares To Similar Cards
Citi Thank You Premier Credit Card
The Citi Thank You Premier card is also a travel rewards credit card that awards you with 3x the points on each dollar spent on travel, which includes gas, airfare hotels, and more. This is higher then the Sapphire card is it only awards 2 x the points on travel and restaurant purchases. Also, you will also earn 2x the points for every dollar spent on dining and entertainment. Just like the Sapphire card, this card waives the $95 annual fee for the first year, and also does not have a 0% intro offer. As you can see both these cards are very similar in terms of features.
With this card you will earn 40 000 bonus points after you spend after you spend $3000 in purchases, while with the Sapphire card you earn 50 000 bonus points after you spend $4000. The main difference between the two cards is you can earn a maximum 3x the points with the Citi Thank You card and a maximum of 2x the points with the Chase Sapphire Card. If you will be making several purchases with your credit card on travel purchases then you will get more value with the Citi Thank You Premier card.
Bank Americard Travel Rewards Credit Card
The Bank Americard Rewards card is reward card similar to the Sapphire Preferred card. It allows you to earn a slightly lower rate for each dollar spent as you will earn 1.5 points per $1 spent. However this card does feature a 0% intro A.P.R. offer for the first 12 months of card opening. This card does not have an annual fee unlike the Sapphire card, and does not have a foreign transaction fee which is always a bonus especially when travelling. This card features a bonus offer of 20 000 bonus points after you spend the first $1000, compared to the Sapphire card that credits you with 50 000 bonus points, although you have to spent $4000 to get the points.
Both cards have a nearly identical interest rate, while the Chase card has a $95 annual fee and this does not have an annual fee. Overall this card will not earn you as many points per dollar spent as the Chase Sapphire card, which is the biggest difference between the two cards. If you are a bigger spender then go with the Chase Sapphire card.
Capital One Venture One Rewards Credit Card
This Capital One credit card is a rewards/miles credit card that features both a 0% introductory offer and a sign up bonus, unlike the Sapphire card that only has a sign up bonus. You will enjoy 0% intro A.P.R. on all purchases until February of 2017. This sign up bonus will see you receive 20 000 bonus miles after you spend $1000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. This card will allow you to earn 1.25 miles for every $1 spent on all purchases. This card does not have an annual fee, unlike the Sapphire card that has a hefty annual fee of $95. This card has flexible redeeming options, as you can you redeem your miles for any flight, hotel, car rental, or cruise. If you are someone who really looks for the 0% intro A.P.R. offer, then this card will be a better fit for you.
Should You Or Shouldn’t You, Our Final Verdict
This is a very good credit card, that offers a lot of value. However this card is really targeted at big spenders who travel frequently. One downside to this card is there is no 0% A.P.R. introductory offer, which you can find on other travel rewards cards, such as the Capital One Venture One card mentioned in this article. Furthermore, while this card does have a good rewards rate, you can find cards with a higher rate such as the Citi Thank You Premier Card. Add in the fact that this card has an annual fee of $95 and you can find better options elsewhere.
That’s not to say this isn’t a quality card, as this card does have some good features, such as the 20% off when you redeem your points through the Chase Ultimate Rewards program, which many cards do not offer. This card is really targeted towards more frequent travellers, so you would have to spend a high amount on travel purchases to get the most out of this card. Our final verdict is says you should only get this card if you are somebody who spends a lot of money on travel, especially with the Chase partner airlines.