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On the heels of a few disappointing changes to Chase credit cards last month (the bank suddenly and silently removed some benefits of United co-branded cards) and rumors that the price protection and return protection perks could be removed from the entire Chase credit card portfolio, there’s more bad news for Chase cardholders.
There are three key aspects to this update:
- Customers will no longer earn 3X points on travel purchases that qualify for the $300 annual travel credit.
- Priority Pass Select access will be limited to two guests per visit. A fee of $27 will be charged to their Chase Sapphire Reserve credit card for each additional guest.
- Price Protection will no longer be available.
This announcement appears to be an internal document, as it references early May as the time customers will be notified. The changes are scheduled to go into effect on August 26. The Points Guy has reached out to Chase for confirmation.
Depending on how you use the card’s benefits, these modifications could have a major impact on your experience with the card.
The first change noted should hit everyone about the same: a loss of 900 points ($300 x 3 points) per year. At the very least, that’s a loss of $9 cash back, or $13.50 in travel purchases made through the Chase travel portal. At current TPG valuations of Chase Ultimate Rewards, that’s a loss in value of $18.90 per year.
The Priority Pass Select benefit really stings for those that were drawn to the Chase Sapphire Reserve for its unlimited guesting feature, including those that frequently travel with large groups of friends or family. Cardholders who typically travel with only one or two companions — or travelers who have multiple Priority Pass memberships from other cards — won’t be seriously impacted.
The elimination of price protection is a major loss for those who utilize this feature. As Chase still shows on the Chase Sapphire Reserve benefits page, this benefit currently provides up to $500 refund per claim, up to $2,500 per year:
It’s disappointing to hear that Chase is making these changes. After all, one of the key selling points of the Chase Sapphire Reserve has been that its Priority Pass membership includes unlimited guests.
If this was being abused by some cardholders, why not settle for a high-but-reasonable number of four or five guests? Dropping it all the way down to two feels punitive for cardholders that may have relied on this benefit when traveling with family.
Also, it’s understandable why Chase might be interested in cutting the price protection benefit on low or no annual fee cards such as the United MileagePlus Explorer, Chase Freedom and Chase Freedom Unlimited. The Chase Sapphire Reserve, however, is meant to be a premium card (and with an annual fee of $450, it certainly has a premium price tag). It seems like a cheap cutback to remove this benefit entirely.
H/T: Doctor of Credit
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), up to 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