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Last week, Chase introduced the Ink Business Preferred Card, further ratcheting up the intense competition in the travel rewards card space. Like the Chase Sapphire Reserve, this new card will offer 3x Ultimate Rewards points on travel, plus 3x on business-focused categories including shipping purchases, advertising purchases made with search engines and social media sites and spending on internet, cable and phone services. However, unlike the more premium Reserve card, the Ink Business Preferred (with a $95 annual fee) will only offer 3x points on the first $150,000 spent in combined purchases across all the bonus categories per account year.
While the upcoming Ink Business Preferred Card is drawing some comparisons to the Sapphire Reserve, its features also overlap with those on the Chase Ink Plus Business Card. This card has long been a top choice for those looking to earn up to 5x Ultimate Rewards points on a variety of purchases, including office supplies. Especially considering the 3x travel category on the Business Preferred Card, you may be wondering whether it’s worth going for that option for the already available Ink Plus. However, there are a handful of reasons you might want to add the latter card to your wallet soon:
1. It won’t be available for new sign-ups after the Ink Preferred launches
We still don’t know exactly when the Ink Preferred card will launch (Chase simply said “later this year”), but the issuer has confirmed that the Ink Plus will no longer be available to new cardholders as of that date. So if you think the card’s various benefits — such as a 10.5% return on the first $50,000 spent on combined purchases at office supply stores and on cellular phone, landline, internet and cable TV services each account anniversary year — could come in handy, you’ll want to act sooner rather than later.
2. 5x isn’t available with the Ink Preferred
While the Ink Preferred’s generating a lot of buzz thanks to the ability to earn 3x Ultimate Rewards points (a 6.3% return) on travel with a much lower annual fee than the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card, with the Ink Plus card you can actually earn a higher return of 5x points on the first $50,000 spent on the categories mentioned above (including office supply purchases) each account anniversary year. If you max out the 5x category on the Ink Plus, you’ll be raking in 250,000 Ultimate Rewards points per year — worth $5,250 based on TPG’s latest valuations. If you max out the Preferred’s 3x category (for the first $150,000 spent each account anniversary year), you’ll be earning 450,000 points — 200,000 more, worth an extra $4,200 — but depending on your business size and spending habits that may not be doable.
3. You can get the sign-up bonus for the Plus now and for the Preferred when it launches
If you’re having trouble deciding between the currently available Ink Plus and the soon-to-launch Ink Business Preferred, keep in mind you could always sign up for the Ink Plus now and then apply for the Business Preferred when it becomes available. While the Preferred will likely be impacted by 5/24, if you haven’t opened more than four accounts within the past 24 months you should be eligible for the card even if you already have Ink Plus.
With the Ink Plus, you’ll earn 60,000 Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $5,000 in the first three months. When the Business Preferred launches, cardholders will earn 80,000 points after spending $5,000 in the first three months. If you earned both sign-up offers, you’d be sitting on a stash of at least 150,000 Ultimate Rewards points (factoring in the minimum points you’d earn from meeting each card’s minimum spending requirement), worth $3,150. Not bad for cards with annual fees under $100!
4. You can product-change to the Preferred after the first year
The Ink Plus could be a good option if you’re planning to sign up for other cards before Preferred launches (again, we don’t know when that’ll be), especially if you’re able to put the 60,000-point sign-up bonus to good use now. But getting Plus now doesn’t mean you’re stuck with that card if you’re ineligible for Preferred due to 5/24. In theory, you can get the Plus right away and then explore any other exceptional offers from Chase or other issuers (that might push you over 5/24), and then product change to Preferred down the road.
Will you be signing up for the Chase Ink Plus while it’s still available?
The American Express Platinum card has some of the best perks out there: cardholders enjoy the best domestic lounge access (Delta SkyClubs, Centurion Lounges, and Priority Pass), a $200 annual airline fee credit as well as up to $200 in Uber credits, and mid-tier elite status at SPG, Marriott, and Hilton. Combined with the 60,000 point welcome offer -- worth $1,140 based on TPG's valuations -- this card is a no-brainer for frequent travelers. Here are 5 reasons you should consider this card, as well as how you can figure out if the $550 annual fee makes sense for you.
- Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
- Enjoy Uber VIP status and free rides in the U.S. up to $15 each month, plus a bonus $20 in December. That can be up to $200 in annual Uber savings.
- 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
- 5X Membership Rewards points on prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com.
- Enjoy access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations around the world.
- Receive complimentary benefits with an average total value of $550 with Fine Hotels & Resorts. Learn More.
- $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.
- Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue on your Platinum Card®. Enrollment required.
- $550 annual fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees