The rumors are true. The Chase Sapphire Reserve card is increasing the annual fee from $450 per year to $550. The pitchforks are out, people are saying the CSR is “garbage” and it is time to cancel the card. I hate to pay more than I need to for anything but are the CSR changes really that bad? Let’s take a look.
What is Changing?
All the current benefits of the CSR will remain intact. There are several new changes to the card as outlined below.
- All cardholders will be eligible for one year of Lyft Pink which costs $19.99 per month; this gives 15% off on all rides, priority airport pickups, relaxed cancellations, 3 free bike or scooter rides per month and surprise offers (whatever that means)
- All Lyft rides will earn 10x points per dollar spent on rides
- All cardholders will be eligible for DashPass which costs $9.99 per month which gives no delivery fee and lower service fees from restaurants
- All cardholders will receive $60 in annual DoorDash statement credits in 2020 AND 2021
- The annual fee will increase from $450 to $550
When Does this Start?
The new benefits listed above will be available to all cardholders this Sunday, January 12. New applicants to the CSR will be charged the $550 annual fee starting this day as well. Current cardholders will be charged the new $550 rate starting on April 1, 2020.
You can still apply for the Chase Sapphire Reserve with this link for the $450 annual fee through Sunday, January 12th.
What Does this Mean?
If you do not already hold the CSR it may make sense to sign up now before the annual fee increases. With the $300 annual travel credit you could take advantage of the current benefits PLUS the added benefits for an effective $150 out of pocket before renewal next year. If you are a CSR cardholder with a renewal that is due to post before April 1 and you had planned to keep the card another year you should be happy. The new benefits can be used with no additional out of pocket expense. My CSR card renewal date is January 9 so I will definitely keep the card at least one more year since I will receive the new benefits at the current annual fee of $450.
Is the New $550 Annual Fee Worth It?
This is a much tougher question and is a case of YMMV. If you are a moderate user of Lyft and/ or DoorDash then you could certainly take advantage of the new benefits and squeeze more than $100 of value out of the CSR. Personally, I don’t use Lyft more than a handful of times a year and the DoorDash credit is not something I would value at the stated cost either. I will wait to see if any other changes occur over the next year but if we were in 2021 and my CSR was set to renew at $550 for the next year I would highly consider downgrading to the CSP or Freedom.
What are your thoughts on the CSR change? Is there enough value in the fee increase to keep the card or will you ditch it? Let us know in the comments!
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The way things stand I’ll not gain much of anything out of the changes, certainly not enough to justify another $100 out of pocket. I’ve got until Sept to decide what to do but currently it’s looking like I’ll drop the card. CSP makes much more sense
I am on the fence too but thinking at this point I’ll downgrade once the AF comes due. Make sure to take advantage of the DoorDash credit for 2020 before downgrading!
Yes, these changes are all that bad. Chase is increasing the annual fee while offering benefits that almost no one will fully use. The rest of the benefits they offer are largely redundant with other cards. So Chase is making their headline personal card worth less. This has the ancillary effect of making Ultimate Rewards worth less, and given the hits that the program has taken of late, they don’t need anything else to make their points worth less. All this will contribute to people using Chase cards less. Using the cards less would be a minor issue except that Chase made a deal with Visa that states that Chase pays one single price for all Visa transactions, regardless of how many transactions that may entail. That makes Chase’s decision even more ill conceived for the company, since if you have unlimited transactions that bring you revenue at no extra cost, you want to have customers spend more on the card rather than cancel the card. Just an awful set of decisions by Chase.
The reactions from cardholders has definitely been mixed. I’m on the bubble on whether or not I will keep next year when my fee jumps to $550.
I would rather not have the change but I can spend $2000 easily on lyft expensible business travel so will get the fee raise back in points. Don’t care about dashthingy.
That’s a good point. With 10x points on Lyft purchases and points being worth 1.5 cents when redeemed for travel you can actually make up the $100 fee increase when you spend $667 with Lyft.
A very disappointing change to me. As someone who got the card – and uses it – primarily for living/traveling abroad, these changes suck. For the extra $100, I get… nothing?? Neither Lyft nor DoorDash are available internationally. Very unfriendly to what I think is a large group of users.
It sounds like these changes are definitely for the worse for your usage of the card. :/
Might be time to dump the card. I only use Lyft a couple times a year and never doordash.
Any thoughts on a replacement card?
It really depends on what benefits are the most valuable to you. What are your top few?
Not worth it to me. I have zero use of that doordash program. Seems insanely overpriced and just not something I’ll ever use. Lyft for me is a once or twice a year thing. I barely manage to use the Uber credit on AmEx.
I don’t see this as being worthwhile. My annual fee just posted a month ago so will see what other options come up, but I’ll cancel it if this is the reality going forward. Bad decisions from Chase. Only real use I can see with the card is priority pass restaurants use. Clubs are mostly all full these days anyway so PP is nearly useless except for the few restaurants that take it. That’s really the only use I get out of this card these days. That alone is worth more than the $150 a year I pay for the card ($300 credit off of $450 fee). But $250 in priority pass restaurant charges annually? Hmm, pushing it there.
I’d agree that it’s a steep jump for the added benefits based on my usage but my annual fee just posted so I can wait another year to decide.
are you going to possible post a new comparison between the AE Platinum vs Citi Prestige vs Chase Reserve? Also is there a lower annual fee for those who hold Chase Bank accounts? Thanks!
Yes – we will likely soon be updating that comparison article. As for a lower annual fee for Chase bank account holders, I am not aware of any such offer / promotion