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In many ways, the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is the card that brought travel points and miles out of the shadows and into the mainstream. With a low annual fee and high-end luxury travel perks, this is the perfect card to open your eyes wide and show you just how much free travel is possible, whether you’re a points pro or a complete beginner.
Here at TPG, we talk about the CSP a lot, as it’s one of our favorite cards. Even still, there’s plenty of fun stuff hiding beneath the surface. Let’s take a stroll through 24 fantastic, breathtaking, bizarre and intriguing fun facts about the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card.
1. It’s Free For the First Year
The CSP’s $95 annual fee is waived for the first year, a nice contrast to premium credit cards that can cost $450 a year or more.
2. The Sign-Up Bonus Is Worth Exactly $1,000
TPG values Chase Ultimate Rewards points at exactly 2 cents each, making the 50,000-point bonus worth $1,000. But you’ll really end up with at least 54,000 points after meeting the $4,000 minimum spending requirement, giving you $1,080 in value.
3. It’s a Shiny Metal Card
The bright metallic blue card is sure to turn heads when you whip it out to pay for dinner, and the loud “thump” it makes when you put it on the table never gets old.
4. Points Can Be Transferred to 13 Hotel and Airline Partners
Chase Ultimate Rewards points transfer at a 1-to-1 ratio to a number of great airline and hotel partners, including Hyatt, United, Southwest, British Airways and Singapore KrisFlyer.
5. It’s a Great Card For Points Veterans…
6. …But Also For Total Beginners!
Instant points transfers make it easy to redeem Ultimate Rewards points, especially for cheap Hyatt Place and Hyatt House hotels.
7. It Was My First Credit Card 🙂
Ok this might not be a fun fact for you, but the Chase Sapphire Preferred makes me really nostalgic. It was my first foray into the points world, and I never looked back!
8. The CSP Is the Middle Child of the Sapphire Family
While most people are familiar with the Sapphire Preferred’s “bigger brother,” the Chase Sapphire Reserve, there’s actually also a baby in the family. The no-annual-fee Chase Sapphire can’t be applied for directly, but you can downgrade your CSP or CSR to a Chase Sapphire after the account’s first anniversary.
9. But You Can’t Get All Three Sapphire Cards at the Same Time
Last year Chase changed the terms and conditions of the Sapphire family (both the CSP and CSR) to the following:
“The product is not available to either (i) current cardmembers of any Sapphire credit card, or (ii) previous cardmembers of any Sapphire credit card who received a new cardmember bonus within the last 48 months.”
So plan your strategy carefully — you can get one Sapphire or the other, but not both.
10. Gain Access to Exclusive Sapphire Lifestyle Events
In addition to high value rewards points, CSP cardholders gain exclusive access to events like the Sundance Film Festival, Radio City Music Hall, and private events with celebrity chefs.
11. Earn 2x Points on Travel and Dining Purchases
As a frequent traveler, the CSP rewards you where you spend the most, with double points on travel and dining purchases in the US and all over the world.
12. The Bonus Categories Are VERY Broadly Defined
“Travel” means more than just plane tickets and hotels — everything from Uber to parking meters to subway tickets are included. The same goes for dining — in addition to bars and restaurants, you’ll earn double points on food trucks, meal delivery services and many other surprising places.
13. It Pairs Well With Other Chase Cards
While the CSP is a standout card by itself, it works even better if you pair it with a duo of other Chase cards and combine all your points. The Chase Freedom Unlimited offers 1.5x points on all purchases, and the Chase Freedom’s rotating 5x quarterly bonus categories (up to $1,500 a quarter) can help maximize your earnings.
14. It’s Almost 10 Years Old
Not to date myself, but I wasn’t even in high school yet when the Chase Sapphire Preferred first launched in August 2009. As the points industry has changed around it, the CSP has held its ground and remains a solid choice for building out your points strategy.
15. It Comes With Excellent Travel Insurance…
When you book travel with your CSP, you’re eligible for up to $500 in reimbursements for delayed travel and up to $10,000 in reimbursement for prepaid, nonrefundable expenses if your trip is cancelled.
16. And Baggage Insurance….
Sapphire Preferred cardholders can be reimbursed up to $100 a day when their checked bags arrive 6 hours late, or up to $3,000 for lost luggage.
17. And Car Rental Insurance
If your rental car is stolen or damaged, the Chase Sapphire Preferred offers primary rental car insurance, which means it kicks in before your own personal auto policy does.
18. The CSP No Longer Has a Bonus For Adding Authorized Users
While the CSP has remained relatively unchanged throughout the years, earlier this month Chase decided to remove the 5,000-point bonus that was available to new cardholders who added an authorized user and had them make a purchase within the first 3 months.
19. But Authorized Users Are Free If You Want to Add One Anyway
If you want to add a family or friend as an authorized user, you can do so free of charge. This is a leg up over premium credit cards which often charge a $75+ annual fee for authorized users. Just remember you’ll be responsible for any charges made on your account!
20. The CSP Makes You Eligible for More Points With Sapphire Banking
Starting in October, Chase is launching a 60,000-point sign-up bonus for its new Sapphire Banking product, but you’re only eligible for it if you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred or a Chase Sapphire Reserve.
21. Access Visa Signature Concierge Services
I think concierge services are one of the most underrated benefits of many credit cards, and you can use the Visa Signature concierge that comes with the CSP for help with restaurant reservations, travel planning or a whole host of other requests.
22. Points Are Worth 25% More When You Redeem Through the Chase Portal
While you’ll usually get more value by transferring your points to airline and hotel partners, sometimes redeeming directly through the Chase travel portal makes sense. If you go this route, you’ll get 1.25 cents in value for each point you redeem.
23. No Foreign Transaction Fees
As you would hope and expect from a credit card designed for traveling, the Chase Sapphire Preferred has no foreign transaction fees. This means it’s as rewarding on vacation as it is at home.
24. If You’re Under 5/24, This Card Needs to be In Your Wallet
Chase has really tightened up the approvals process for many of its credit cards in recent years. Specifically, the issuer’s 5/24 rule means that you’ll automatically be rejected for the CSP and many other cards if you’ve opened 5 or more cards in the last 24 months. That being said, if you’re under 5/24 and eligible to apply for a Chase Sapphire Preferred, I think it’s a no brainer to add this card to your wallet.
Heading toward a decade of service, the Chase Sapphire Preferred has aged incredibly well. While the credit card market is constantly changing as new competitors pop up and old products are quietly removed, this card has stood the test of time and continues to be an all around excellent choice. So whether you’re a beginner or an advanced points collector, if you’re looking to earn worthwhile travel rewards, the CSP is a great card to consider.
With great travel benefits, 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. Here are the top 5 reasons it should be in your wallet, or read our definitive review for more details.
- 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®
- Chase Sapphire Preferred named "Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption" - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, June 2018
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- 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