I generally believe there are three reasons to apply for and keep a credit card.
First is any welcome offer on the card.
The second reason is if the card has attractive spending categories.
The final reason is any ongoing benefits you receive for having the card.
Most credit cards check at least one of these boxes, but it’s rare that a card will check all three. The Chase Sapphire Preferred card, with its current welcome offer of 100,000 Ultimate Rewards points, checks maybe 2 and a half. It has a great welcome offer and excellent ongoing benefits. The rewards you get from ongoing spending are okay but not extraordinary. Still, the welcome offer alone makes it worth considering.
All-Time High Welcome Offer
The biggest reason to get the Chase Sapphire Preferred card right now is that its welcome offer is at an all-time high. The Chase Sapphire Preferred was one of the first credit cards I ever got, and the signup bonus was 40,000 Ultimate Rewards points. That was 6 or 7 years ago, and over time, the welcome offer on the Sapphire Preferred has gradually continued to go up and up. First we saw 50,000 points, then 60,000, 80,000 and now 100,000 Ultimate Rewards points.
100,000 Ultimate Rewards points is worth at least $1,250, if you use it for travel or via Chase Pay Yourself Back. And if you have a spouse with a Chase Sapphire Reserve card, it could be worth up to $1,500. And even better, you can often get even more value by transferring to Chase’s travel partners. Like the time I turned 100,000 Ultimate Rewards points into a $6,500 train trip.
Combining Chase Ultimate Rewards Points
Another great reason to consider signing up for the Sapphire Preferred card is the ability to combine Chase Ultimate Rewards points. You can combine your Ultimate Rewards points that you’ve earned on different cards, and you can also combine points with authorized users on your account. That makes it fairly straightforward to combine points between spouses / partners as well.
The reason this is so important and valuable is that the value of your Ultimate Rewards points depends on the card that you earn them on. If you only have a no-fee Chase card like the Ink Cash or Freedom Unlimited, then your points are only worth 1 cent each. But if you have a premium card like the Sapphire Preferred or Ink Preferred, then your points become worth 1.25 cents per point. So if you already have a lot of Ultimate Rewards that you’ve earned with a Freedom Flex or other no-fee Chase card, then applying for the Sapphire Preferred not only gives you 100,000 Ultimate Rewards points, but it makes all of your EXISTING points worth 25% more. Having a premium Chase card like the Sapphire Preferred also unlocks the ability to transfer your Ultimate Rewards points to Chase’s hotel and airline transfer partners.
Points for those who have the Chase Sapphire Reserve are worth 1.5 cents per point. Unfortunately, you can’t hold both the Sapphire Reserve and the Sapphire Preferred at the same time. But if you have a spouse or partner who does have the Sapphire Reserve, then you should be able to combine points with them. That could make the 100,000 point bonus worth at least $1,500.
Primary Car Rental Insurance
Another great reason to have the Sapphire Preferred is for the car rental insurance. Like the Chase Sapphire Reserve, the Sapphire Preferred has outstanding car rental insurance. Paying for a rental car with the Sapphire Reserve saved my parents nearly $1000 when they ran into problems with their rental car. The best part about the rental insurance with the Sapphire Preferred is that it’s primary, unlike the insurance with many other credit cards. That means that it comes into play before you would be required to make a claim with your own auto insurer.
Flexibility of Redeeming Chase Ultimate Rewards
I think Chase Ultimate Rewards are the best miles and points currency out there, and one reason for that is how flexible they are. You can redeem them for travel (with a 25% bonus if you have the Sapphire Preferred). Sometimes that is the best way to use your Ultimate Rewards points. You can also transfer them to travel partners like United, Hyatt, Marriott and others. I have earned and redeemed hundreds of thousands of Ultimate Rewards points over the last few years and they have had a huge impact on our family’s ability to travel for free / cheap.
The Bottom Line
If you’re eligible to get the welcome bonus on the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you should highly consider it. This is one of the best offers that we’ve ever seen, on any card. In order to be eligible for the bonus you must:
- Be under Chase 5/24
- Not be a current cardholder of any Chase Sapphire card – aka the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Not have received a new member bonus for any Sapphire card in the past 48 months
If you have any questions about this offer or want to talk over how it might work for you, please email me at dan at pointswithacrew dot com. I am more than happy to talk to anyone about this or any other offer and how it might work for you.
Are you planning on applying for the Chase Sapphire Preferred with its 100,000 point offer? Leave a note in the comments.
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