Chase Sapphire Preferred Card Review

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Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Learn more externa link icon at our partner’s secure site.
Rewards rate:

2X points on dining at restaurants including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.

  • Intro bonus: 80,000 points
  • Annual fee: $95
  • Regular APR: 15.99% – 22.99% Variable
  • Recommended credit score: 670-850 (Good to Excellent)

Chase Sapphire Preferred is a tiered, points-earning rewards card geared toward frequent fliers. It’s most valuable assets include a hefty welcome bonus, premium points redemption options and access to Chase’s Pay Yourself Back program.

At a Glance

  • Introductory welcome offer of 80,000 bonus points when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening. Plus, earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases in your first year.
  • 2x points on dining
  • 2x points on travel
  • 2x points at grocery stores (on up to $1,000 in purchases per month) through April 2021
  • 1x points on all other purchases
  • 25% redemption boost on points redeemed for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards or eligible statement credits via Pay Yourself Back 
  • Variable APR of 15.99%-22.99%
  • $95 Annual Fee

Pros

  • Generous welcome offer

  • Tiered bonus points categories

  • 1:1 point transfer at airline and hotel partners

  • No foreign transaction fee

  • Metal card

Cons

  • High APR

  • Annual fee

  • Need to pay attention to spending categories to maximize rewards

  • Other cards have similar, higher-earning bonus categories

Additional Card Details

One of the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card’s biggest pros for travel enthusiasts is access to Chase Ultimate Rewards, where cardholders receive boosted points redemptions and 1:1 point transfers to airline and hotel travel partners. Beyond rewards on spending, this card has some nice extra benefits and travel protections that help its case as a solid travel rewards card. Here’s a rundown:

  • 5x points per $1 spent on Lyft rides through March 2022
  • Earn up to $60 in statement credits toward Peloton membership through Dec. 2021
  • 12 months complimentary DashPass from DoorDash subscription (activate by Dec. 31, 2021)
  • Primary auto rental collision damage waiver
  • Baggage delay insurance
  • Trip cancellation/interruption insurance
  • Trip delay reimbursement
  • Travel and emergency assistance services
  • Extended warranty protection
  • Purchase protection

Pay Yourself Back

You can redeem your Ultimate Rewards points for eligible statement credits using the Pay Yourself Back program at the same 25% boosted value you’ll get when redeeming for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. Request your Pay Yourself Back redemptions within 90 days of making purchases at qualifying merchants, which currently include grocery stores, home improvement stores, and dining (including takeout and delivery).

Full Review

Card Type

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is a travel rewards credit card issued by Chase. It earns points on various spending categories, which you can later redeem for travel.

Annual Fee

The Chase Sapphire Preferred card carries a $95 annual fee.

Welcome Offer

The Chase Sapphire Preferred is currently offering an elevated welcome bonus of 80,000 Ultimate Rewards points, up from 60,000, if you spend $4,000 in the first three months from account opening. In fact, there’s never been a better time to get it.

Rewards

The Chase Sapphire Preferred earns 2x points per dollar on dining and travel. These are broad categories and include everything from dining to takeout and delivery to airfare, hotels and even rideshares like Lyft and Uber.

Foreign Transaction Fees

The Chase Sapphire Preferred does not charge any foreign transaction fees.

Other Benefits

The Chase Sapphire Preferred also comes with a complimentary 12-month DoorDash DashPass membership (otherwise $9.99 per month) and up to $60 in credits towards a Peloton membership.

Benefits of the Chase Sapphire Preferred

The Chase Sapphire Preferred is a solid pick if you want to earn points which you can later redeem for free travel. It carries a $95 annual fee, but is significantly lower than some of the other more premium cards in the market, such as the Chase Sapphire Reserve. The DoorDash and Peloton credits are another added bonus, especially if you already use those products and services regularly.

Drawbacks of the Chase Sapphire Preferred

If you value luxury travel, the Chase Sapphire Preferred can be lacking a bit: It does not provide lounge access or travel credits or discounts, unlike its sister card, the Chase Sapphire Reserve. It also has an annual fee, so if you are more of a budget traveler, this could be a drawback for you.

Chase Sapphire Preferred vs. Chase Sapphire Reserve

The Preferred carries a lower annual fee than the Reserve, its sister card. The Reserve card carries a $550 annual fee and earns 3x points on all travel and dining, compared to 2x on the Preferred. Like the Preferred, the Reserve comes with a complimentary DoorDash Dash Pass membership, although it also offers $60 worth of credits, unlike the Preferred. It also comes with Peloton credits, although it’s $120 compared to the Preferred’s $60.

If you’re deciding between the two cards, we recommend taking a close look at your travel and lifestyle preferences. The Sapphire Preferred card carries a lower annual fee, but it does not have nearly as many perks as the Sapphire Reserve. Depending on your habits and budget, you may find that you are able to use the perks of one card more than the other.

How to Use the Chase Sapphire Preferred 

The first step to maximizing this card is planning your spending so you qualify for the introductory offer. You’ll get 80,000 bonus points if you spend $4,000 in the first three months from account opening, which is equal to $1,000 when redeemed for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. With so many 2020 travel plans put on hold by the pandemic, that’s a nice boost toward next year’s overdue vacation. 

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card’s bonus categories are limited to dining and travel (and grocery stores through April 2021), but you’ll want to be sure to use it for each of these purchases to rack up the Ultimate Rewards Points — where the real value comes into play. 

And with Chase’s broadly-defined categories, you may be able to secure 2x points on more purchases than you might think. Dining can include everything from fast food to fine dining and even your daily Starbucks. And travel purchases aren’t just vacation bookings — beyond airline and hotel reservations, think Uber and Lyft rides, bus trips, excursions, and more. 

If you have another card that earns higher rewards value in these categories, consider the tradeoff of points earned vs. redemption value for each, while accounting for extra benefits and annual fee. You might find while the Preferred Card earns fewer points per dollar spent, you still come out on top when factoring for what those rewards convert to when redeemed.

Finally, to really maximize this card, strategize how you use your points. Redeeming points for travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards or statement credits via Pay Yourself Back will boost each point by 25%, meaning every 10,000 points you earn can be redeemed for $125, rather than the $100 they’d be worth if redeemed for cash or gift cards, for example. 

You can see how many points you have on your online account and on your monthly statement. Points earned in a monthly cycle are generally available at the beginning of the next cycle. 

Chase Sapphire Preferred Compared to Other Cards

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

  • Intro bonus:
    80,000 points
  • Annual fee:
    $95
  • Regular APR:
    15.99% – 22.99% Variable
  • Recommended credit:
    670-850 (Good to Excellent)
  • Learn more externa link icon at our partner’s secure site.
American Express® Gold Card

American Express® Gold Card

  • Intro bonus:
    60,000 points
  • Annual fee:
    $250
  • Regular APR:
    See Pay Over Time APR
  • Recommended credit:
    670-850 (Good to Excellent)
  • Learn more externa link icon at our partner’s secure site.
Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

  • Intro bonus:
    60,000 points
  • Annual fee:
    $550
  • Regular APR:
    16.99%-23.99% Variable
  • Recommended credit:
    740-850 (Excellent)
  • Learn more externa link icon at our partner’s secure site.

Is the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Right for You?

If you’re on a first-name basis with the curbside bag check guy at your local airport, this card could make a solid addition to your wallet. 

It’s a valuable tool for frequent fliers, mainly thanks to many 1:1 partner transfers and boosted travel redemptions, both of which help maximize what your points are worth. Plus, helpful travel perks like trip cancellation and baggage delay insurance provide coverage for if your plans get derailed. 

This card can be especially lucrative if you pair it with a Chase Freedom card, such as the Chase Freedom Flex or Chase Freedom Unlimited. You’ll be able to transfer any rewards you earn from those cards over to your Chase Sapphire Preferred account and then redeem them for the Preferred’s premium 1 point = 1.25 cents rate.

Additional perks like Pay Yourself Back, access to a $60 Peloton credit, and DoorDash and Lyft rewards are also nice. But before getting caught up in the long list of perks, make sure you’ll actually use them, both to prevent breaking your budget and to offset the card’s $95 annual fee. 

Bottom Line

EDITORIAL INDEPENDENCE

As with all of our credit card reviews, our analysis is not influenced by any partnerships or advertising relationships.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred is a solid travel rewards card with plenty of extra benefits. But with a high APR and $95 annual fee, evaluate your spending to make sure you can really benefit from its perks and the Ultimate Rewards program before applying.

*All information about the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card has been collected independently by NextAdvisor and has not been reviewed by the issuer.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does the Chase Sapphire Preferred have an annual fee?

Yes, there is a $95 annual fee.

How much are points worth with the Chase Sapphire Preferred?

1 point is equal to 1 cent when redeemed for cash, but you can earn 1.25 cents per point when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards or statement credits via the Pay Yourself Back program.

How do I redeem the points I get with my Chase Sapphire Preferred?

You’ll be able to choose redemption options through your account on Chase.com. Points earned during a billing cycle are generally available at the beginning of the next billing cycle.

Do rewards on the Sapphire Preferred card expire?

No, Chase Ultimate Rewards points that you earn with your Chase Sapphire Preferred Card do not expire as long as your account is in good standing.

What’s the difference between Sapphire Preferred and Sapphire Reserve?

The Sapphire Preferred is the more budget-friendly option. It carries a $95 annual fee, and earns 2x points on dining and travel, plus some lifestyle perks such as a DoorDash Dash Pass membership and $60 worth of Peloton credits. The Reserve card is the more premium option, and has a $550 annual fee. However, it earns 3x points on dining and travel, plus it has travel perks such as a $300 travel credit, $100 credit to TSA PreCheck/Global Entry, Priority Pass Select lounge membership and more.