Review: Sapphire Preferred From Chase

When people learn that I get to travel for free with credit card rewards, they often want my help. Usually, they have a destination in mind, and they want to use their reward points to get them there. My first question is always, “Do you have any cards that give you flexible rewards?

Among these products, the Chase Sapphire Preferred Rewards card from Chase is emerging as a market leader. Not only does this card offer points in Chase’s Ultimate Rewards program, Sapphire Preferred cardholders have exclusive opportunities to earn points, as well as better bonuses than other Chase cards.

Key features…

  • Earn Ultimate Rewards points. Chase’s current sign-up bonus offers 40,000 points after spending $3,000 within three months of opening an account. Cardholders then earn 1 point on most purchases, double points on travel and dining, and triple points for travel booked through the Ultimate Rewards website. Finally, cardholders receive a bonus equal to 7 percent of the points earned each year.
  • Spend Ultimate Rewards points. Points are worth 1 cent each toward cash back or gift cards. Redeem your points for travel at the Ultimate Rewards website and get another 20 percent off. But the most valuable rewards come when points are redeemed for airline miles, hotel points, or even Amtrak Guest Rewards.
  • Interest rates. The standard APR is 15.24 percent. There’s no zero-percent promotional financing on new purchases or balance transfers at this time.
  • Fees. This card has an annual fee of $95 that’s waived the first year. There are no foreign transaction fees for purchases outside the United States.

Advantages…

  • Super value from Ultimate Rewards. Although Ultimate Rewards points can only be redeemed for miles on four airlines – United, Southwest, British Airways, and Korean Air – the key to unlocking their value is to leverage their partners. For example, transfer miles to United and redeem awards on any of their 25 Star Alliance airline partners. Transfer them to British Airways and fly on any of their 12 OneWorld partners. And Korean Airlines miles can be used on any of 15 SkyTeam airlines. Throw in four major hotel chains and Amtrak, and there is almost nowhere you can’t go with these points.
  • Great bonuses. If you count the annual 7 percent points bonus, this card returns 2.14 points per dollar spent on travel – including airfare, hotels, car rentals, and dining. Triple points for travel booked on the Ultimate Rewards website equals 3.27 points per dollar.
  • Nifty card. The actual card you receive is made of some kind of plastic/metal sandwich. When I hand it to cashiers, they tend to be surprised and impressed by its weight and feel.

Disadvantages…

  • There could be more transfer partners. The American Express Membership Rewards program offers a dozen airline partners, while their Starwood Preferred Guest card features 30. By contrast, Ultimate Rewards can be transferred to the programs of only four airlines. (Although, as explained above, miles can be transferred to other airlines via airline partnerships.)
  • High annual fee. Even though they do waive the cost the first year, $95 is a lot of money for a credit card. The standard Chase Sapphire Card has no annual fee, but lacks many of the bonus point offers and has fewer options to transfer points.
  • High interest rates. Like most reward cards, you can expect a higher APR. If you tend to carry a balance, you should be looking for a low-interest-rate credit card.

Bottom line…

Get it if: You want to quickly earn flexible points that can be used for premium travel rewards.

Forget it if: You carry a balance and are looking for the lowest interest rate.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.

Read Next
13 Small Gadgets Under $20 That Make Life Better
13 Small Gadgets Under $20 That Make Life Better

These inexpensive electronics will make your day-to-day life a little easier — and happier.

These 12 Reusable Products Save You Money Over and Over
These 12 Reusable Products Save You Money Over and Over

Buy reusable versions of these household items, and you won’t have to spend another dime on them for years.

Could You Give Up These 7 Expenses to Save Thousands of Dollars a Year?
Could You Give Up These 7 Expenses to Save Thousands of Dollars a Year?

You could save more than $30,000 by setting aside these costly expenses for just one year.

30 Purchases That Will Start Saving You Money Immediately
30 Purchases That Will Start Saving You Money Immediately

Sometimes, you’ve got to spend to save. These canny deals are a good bet for savings.

17 Surprising Things You Can Sell for Extra Money
17 Surprising Things You Can Sell for Extra Money

From your closet to the beach, the trash you find may be someone else’s treasure.

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Most Popular
7 Kirkland Signature Items to Avoid at Costco
7 Kirkland Signature Items to Avoid at Costco

Even if it seems you save a bundle buying Costco’s Kirkland Signature brand products, they may not be the bargain they appear to be.

The Next 5 Groups Who Will Get the COVID-19 Vaccine
The Next 5 Groups Who Will Get the COVID-19 Vaccine

The CDC has unveiled a schedule that likely will determine who gets the next doses.

Am I Eligible for My Mother’s Social Security Benefit?
Am I Eligible for My Mother’s Social Security Benefit?

Can an adult daughter tap into her late mother’s benefit?

11 Generic Products You Should Buy at Costco
11 Generic Products You Should Buy at Costco

Not all generics are worthwhile, but these are among the best from Costco’s Kirkland Signature brand.

8 Tips for Retiring Comfortably on Social Security Alone
8 Tips for Retiring Comfortably on Social Security Alone

It’s never too early to start learning how to live well while living on less.

9 Things You’ll Never See at Costco Again
9 Things You’ll Never See at Costco Again

The warehouse store offers an enormous selection, but these products aren’t coming back.

3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free
3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free

With a little ingenuity, you can cut Office costs to zero.

This Surprise Factor Can Raise Your Risk of Dementia
This Surprise Factor Can Raise Your Risk of Dementia

Nearly half of U.S. residents may face this threat.

Organize Your Home With These 10 Thrift Store Finds
Organize Your Home With These 10 Thrift Store Finds

Resolve to be clutter-free in 2021 with these secondhand purchases.

This Gas Station Scam Is Victimizing More Drivers
This Gas Station Scam Is Victimizing More Drivers

For the second straight year, a growing number of Americans believe they’ve fallen prey to this scam.

11 Laws You Could Be Breaking Without Knowing It
11 Laws You Could Be Breaking Without Knowing It

Seriously? Fibbing about the weather is a crime? This and other little-known legal traps await the unwary.

These Are the 3 Best Used Cars You Can Buy
These Are the 3 Best Used Cars You Can Buy

These vehicles boast reliability, safety and long-lasting value.

6 Legal Documents Retirees Need — but Don’t Have
6 Legal Documents Retirees Need — but Don’t Have

Few retirees have all of these documents that are crucial to their golden years — especially during a pandemic.

13 Things Seniors Can Get for Free — or Almost Free
13 Things Seniors Can Get for Free — or Almost Free

There are many ways to get cheap or free services and goods after reaching a certain age.

Internet Providers Can’t Charge You for This Anymore
Internet Providers Can’t Charge You for This Anymore

Starting this month, your ISP no longer can bill you for this fee.

9 Small Expenses That Are Bleeding Your Budget Dry
9 Small Expenses That Are Bleeding Your Budget Dry

Keep more of future paychecks by eliminating these budget-busting unnecessary expenses.

15 Painless Ways You Can Cut Costs in 2021
15 Painless Ways You Can Cut Costs in 2021

Follow these tips to save, so you’ll have money for things that really matter.

The 4 Best Things to Buy in January — and 4 to Avoid
The 4 Best Things to Buy in January — and 4 to Avoid

As a new year dawns, deals abound for some types of products. In other cases, it pays to wait.

11 Huge Retirement Costs That Are Often Overlooked
11 Huge Retirement Costs That Are Often Overlooked

Does your retirement budget account for all of these costs?

View More Articles

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Add a Comment

Our Policy: We welcome relevant and respectful comments in order to foster healthy and informative discussions. All other comments may be removed. Comments with links are automatically held for moderation.