60,000-point bonus for a top travel card: Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card review
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Editor’s note: This post has been updated with the latest credit card information.
Chase Sapphire Preferred Card overview
The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is one of the best-known travel rewards credit cards, featuring 5 points per dollar on travel booked through the Chase travel portal and 3 points per dollar on dining, select streaming services and online grocery store purchases (excluding Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs). These valuable points can be transferred to airline and hotel partners or redeemed directly for travel at a rate of 1.25 cents per point through Chase Ultimate Rewards. Card rating*: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½
*Card rating is based on the opinion of TPG’s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
It’s the end of another year, and as we look forward to the next, we keep getting asked a familiar question: Which travel credit card should you start with?
To be honest, TPG readers ask that question a lot, not just at the end of the year. And we almost universally recommend the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card. It earns one of our favorite rewards currencies. Many of us started our journey into points and miles with the Chase Sapphire Preferred.
The card is now offering 60,000 bonus points (worth $1,200 in travel, according to TPG valuations) after meeting minimum spending requirements.
Here’s what you need to know about the Chase Sapphire Preferred.
Ready to get the card? Apply here for the Chase Sapphire Preferred
Who is the Chase Sapphire Preferred for?
I also recommend starting your journey into the world of loyalty points with Chase cards because you need to plan around Chase’s 5/24 rule regarding applications strategically. The Sapphire Preferred is definitely worthy of one of your coveted five slots for opening new cards within two years.
Chase Sapphire Preferred sign-up bonus
With the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you’ll earn a sign-up bonus of 60,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening. That’s not the most generous offer we’ve ever seen for this card, but it’s still enough to take you just about anywhere in the world you want to go.
Main benefits and perks
$50 annual hotel credit
In August, Chase revealed a slew of exciting changes to its Sapphire cards, including the Sapphire Preferred. One of these new perks was a $50 statement credit on hotel stays purchased through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal upon opening the card, as well as each following cardmember anniversary. It’s automatically applied to your account each year when you make an eligible charge. Note that the $50 credit does not earn Chase Ultimate Rewards points.
If you open the card now, you’ll receive access to the credit immediately. Existing cardmembers won’t receive the credit until after their next account anniversary.
10% annual points bonus
Another change Chase added to the card is a 10% anniversary points bonus. Cardholders will receive a 10% bonus based on their total spending during the account anniversary year at a rate of 1 point for each $1 spent. For example, if you spent $100,000 on your Sapphire Preferred during your cardmember year, you’ll receive 10,000 bonus points at the end of the year, regardless of any bonus categories in which you spend.
One benefit to be aware of in the near term: When you register your card by March 31, 2022, you’ll receive at least one year of complimentary DashPass membership with DoorDash, which gives you free delivery and reduced service fees on eligible purchases. There is a cost associated with using food delivery services such as DoorDash, but this can be a valuable benefit if you already use the service.
This card is an ideal choice to pay for travel bookings such as car rentals, cruises, plane tickets and hotels because of the comprehensive travel and purchase protections it affords. Among them, cardholders can expect the following:
- Primary rental car coverage.
- Trip delay insurance.
- Trip cancellation insurance.
- Baggage delay insurance.
- Lost luggage reimbursement.
- Purchase protection.
- Extended warranty protection.
You can read more about the Chase Sapphire Preferred shopping and travel benefits here.
How to earn points
The Chase Sapphire Preferred comes with a simple earning structure that is easy to maximize. Here’s what you’ll earn:
- 5 points per dollar on travel booked through the Chase travel portal.
- 5 points per dollar on Peloton Bike, Tread and accessory purchases over $1,800, with a maximum earning of 25,000 points (through March 2022).
- 5 points per dollar on Lyft (through March 2022).
- 3 points per dollar on dining, select streaming services and online grocery store purchases (excludes Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs).
- 2 points per dollar on all travel not booked through the Chase travel portal.
- 1 point per dollar on everything else.
How to redeem points
When you’re ready to redeem the points you’ve earned with the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you’ll understand why the card shines. Here are some ways you can receive use your points for travel.
Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal
You can use your points to purchase airfare, reserve hotel rooms and even rent a car — all at a fixed rate of 1.25 cents per point through the Chase travel portal. That means if you don’t want to worry about blackout dates or finding award space, you’ll always have the option to book travel using your points. As long as there’s a seat for sale on the flight you want, or a hotel room available to reserve with cash, you’ll be able to pay for it with your points.
Transfer to Chase travel partners
It’s possible to receive much more than 1.25 cents per point in value by transferring rewards to Chase airline and hotel partners, though.
Chase Pay Yourself Back
Through March 31, 2022, you can use the Chase “Pay Yourself Back” feature to redeem your points at 1.25 cents each to offset purchases made at Airbnb and awaytravel.com.
Which card competes with the Chase Sapphire Preferred?
There are many worthwhile mid-tier travel credit cards, but the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is the one that goes toe-to-toe with the Sapphire Preferred. The card currently offers…
- 60,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening.
- 2 miles per dollar on purchases.
- Ability to redeem miles at a flat rate of 1 cent each toward travel purchases.
- Ability to transfer miles to valuable airline and hotel partners.
- Up-to-$100 statement credit toward Global Entry or TSA PreCheck.
- Travel accident insurance.*
- Extended warranty protection.*
- No foreign transaction fees.
- $95 annual fee.
* Benefits only available to accounts approved for the Visa Signature card. Terms apply.
If trying to decide between these two cards, think about which one’s earning formula suits your spending habit, and which one’s transfer partners you’re more likely to maximize.
Is the Chase Sapphire Preferred worth the annual fee?
The Chase Sapphire Preferred is worth opening if:
- You can achieve the 60,000-point sign-up bonus.
- You’re looking for valuable travel protections.
- You currently hold the Chase Freedom Unlimited and/or Chase Freedom Flex card. When you carry the Sapphire Preferred along with one of these cards, you can freely move points from one account to another, effectively augmenting the value of your Freedom earnings by translating them from cash-back rewards into fully transferable Ultimate Rewards points.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred continues to represent a solid value proposition for a wide swath of the public. So long as you’re using the card frequently enough to get more than $95 in value from the rewards earned and benefits utilized, this card is definitely worth the annual cost.
After its debut a decade ago, it’s still regarded as one of the best rewards credit cards. It earns some of the most valuable points around, and it’s flexible enough to meet the travel rewards needs of practically every points and miles skill level. It also comes with a low enough price tag for many to be able to give it a try.
Apply here for the Chase Sapphire Preferred with a 60,000-point bonus.
Additional reporting by Chris Dong, Stella Shon, Jennifer Yellin, Joseph Hostetler and Eric Rosen.
Featured photo by Wyatt Smith/The Points Guy.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
WELCOME OFFER: 60,000 Points
TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,200
CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 3X points on dining and 2x points on travel, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners
*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.
- Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
- Enjoy benefits such as a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x on dining and 2x on all other travel purchases, plus more.
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
- With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
- Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 03/31/22.
- Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.