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Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here – Chase Sapphire Preferred, Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite MasterCard 

TPG reader Lance sent me a Facebook message this week to ask me about which credit card he should get.

“I already have The Platinum Card from Amex and Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from Amex, but I want to get another card that allows me to use points for travel expenses and statement credits. I’m deciding between the Barclaycard Arrival and the Chase Sapphire Preferred card – which should I get?”

I always say having a diverse selection of points and miles is useful, and having a diverse portfolio of credit cards can help with that. So really, getting both the Chase Sapphire Preferred and the Barclaycard Arrival would make sense in this case.

Having several credit cards can be a great way to diversify points.
Having several credit cards can be a great way to diversify points.

The best thing about the Barclaycard Arrival is that you get a 40,000-mile bonus after spending $3,000 in 3 months. Those points are equivalent to about $454 when you redeem them for travel, but they’re not great for straight-up statement credits since you get just 0.5 cents per mile for a rate of return of 1% (you earn 2X miles per $1 on all purchases). However, Lance, if you are like most TPG readers, you are a traveler and can best benefit from using the points for travel purposes. Technically you are getting 2.27% back in value per dollar you spend.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred card will also give you a 40,000-point sign-up bonus if you spend $4,000 in the first 3 months. The Ultimate Rewards points you earn with the Sapphire Preferred can be redeemed at 1.25 cents apiece towards travel expenses. However, remember that  you can earn 2.14X points per dollar on travel for dining, so if you strictly spent just on travel and dining, you would get just over 2.5% back, which is slightly better than the Barclaycard Arrival. However, do consider that the Arrival earns 2X miles per dollar on all purchases, not just travel and dining. The Barclaycard Arrival may be a better card if you are just looking to redeem just for travel expenses.

Additionally, the Chase Sapphire card has you book travel through the Ultimate Rewards, whereas the Barclaycard will allow to buy whatever you want that is travel-related – purchasing an airline or train ticket, pay for a taxi, etc. – and then you can have it taken off your statement as a credit.

My final advice: get both! Both cards come with a 40,000-point bonuses – just make sure you meet the minimum spending requirement on each in the first 3 months to get the bonus. If you have a Bluebird and a place where you can purchase Vanilla Reload using credit cards near you, that shouldn’t be too hard. The annual fees on both cards are also waived for the first year, and both sign-up bonuses can be valued at several hundred dollars, depending on how you use the points, so you can definitely leverage them for a lot of value.

More information on these cards and others can be found below:

Upcoming Changes to the Barclaycard Arrival

Maximizing Barclaycard Arrival Points

Chase Sapphire Preferred Sign-Up Bonus

Top Five Credit Cards For Travel Rewards

Using the TPG Maximizer Tool To Help You Choose The Right Card

Let me know if you have any other questions by messaging me on FacebookTweeting me or emailing me at info@thepointsguy.com.

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

With great transfer partners like United and Hyatt, 2x points on travel & dining and a 50,000 point sign up bonus, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is a great card for those looking to get into the points and miles game.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Named Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, July 2016
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
  • No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
16.49% - 23.49% Variable
Annual Fee
Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95
Balance Transfer Fee
5.00%
Recommended Credit
Excellent Credit

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.