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Follow the full Card Madness 2020 bracket and post series here – Challonge Bracket Card Madness 2020
- Pick the Best Credit Card of 2020 with Points With a Crew!
- Vote for Card Madness 2020 Round 1 Here!
- Card Madness 2020, Games 7-16, FIGHT!
- Card Madness 2020 Games 17-24, Big Wins for Chase
- Hyatt Dominates the Competition! Welcome back to Card Madness 2020
- Our Readers Love Chase and AmEx – Vote for Card Madness 2020
- Discover and Capital One Have Been Voted Off the Island! Card Madness 2020 Round 2
- Only Three Banks Left, Vote for Card Madness 2020 Here!
- The Chase Sapphire Reserve Pulls in the Most Votes in Round 3 of Card Madness 2020
- Welcome to the Quarterfinals of Card Madness 2020!
Winners of the Quarterfinals of Card Madness 2020
- Game 1: American Express Gold (40) v Citi ThankYou Premier (16)
- Game 2: Chase Ink Preferred (17) v Chase Sapphire Reserve (37)
- Game 3: Chase World of Hyatt (32) v American Express Platinum (24)
- Game 4: Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card (33) v Chase Freedom Unlimited (19)
Citi is knocked out of the tournament by American Express in Game 1. Chase beats AmEx in Game 3, and AmEx beats Chase in Game 4. Game 2 saw more support for the Chase Sapphire Reserve than the Chase Ink Preferred – both great Ultimate Rewards cards.
All things considered, the Financial Four in 2020’s Card Madness Tournament are very similar to the 2019 tournament. The Chase Sapphire Reserve, the AmEx Gold, and the Hilton Aspire all made it into the top four in both years! The fourth card last year was the AmEx Platinum, and it almost made it again this year! Instead, the Chase World of Hyatt card edged out the Platinum card 32 to 24.
Semifinal Game 1: American Express Gold Card v Chase Sapphire Reserve
Last year, the AmEx Gold lost in the finals to the Sapphire Reserve, do you think it can hold out this time? Both are great long term cards, due to high earning rates, great transfer partners, and a slew of additional benefits for travelers and homebodies alike. (Though let me be clear, the travelers usually get a lot more from either card!)
My Gold card is one of my daily carry cards (in fact, I have it in my pocket right now!). Anyone with the card will earn 4x Membership Rewards at restaurants globally and US supermarkets (on up to $25k spend annually), 3x on flights from airlines or the AmEx travel portal, and 1x on everything else. After some major revamping last year it also boasts $10 in monthly dining credits and a $100 airline incidental credit.
The Chase Sapphire Reserve is the reigning champ of Card Madness 2019 and continues to make a good showing in this year’s tournament. People often think of the CSR as the holy grail of travel cards. (And the votes seem to back that up! Cardholders earn 3x Ultimate Rewards on travel and dining and a can use a $300 travel credit annually. There’s a hefty $550 annual fee, and you’ll benefit from complimentary Lyft Pink membership and 10x points on Lyft rides through March of 2022. Plus, Priority Pass Select membership and $60 in DoorDash credits in 2020 and 2021. No promises on whether those benefits will stick around.
Semifinal Game 2: Chase World of Hyatt v Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card
Two of the best hotel cards in the game face off in the semifinals! The Hyatt card currently has the highest total votes in Card Madness 2020 – at a whopping 230. To put things in perspective, the Gold card has 227 total, the Aspire 218, and the CSR 162 (but the CSR got a free win in Round 1). All four remaining cards have averaged between 54-58 votes per game.
Hyatt continues to be one of our travel community’s favorite hotel brands (clearly). This card has scored at least 50 votes in each of the first three rounds! The Hyatt card from Chase will get you 4 points per $1 spent at Hyatt, double points on transit, taxis, tolls, ride-share services, dining, airlines, fitness clubs, and gyms, and 1 point everywhere else. You’ll net a free award night every year on your cardmember anniversary, and a second free night if you spend at least $15,000 during your cardmember year (these nights are only good at categories 1-4). Reach your Hyatt status faster with 5 qualifying nights annually and 2 additional qualifying nights every time you spend $5,000 on your card. Plus, you’ll have Discoverist status at Hyatt hotels just for holding the card!
The Aspire Card took home the Bronze trophy in 2019 and is back for another fight! A $450 annual fee unlocks quite a few benefits. An annual free weekend night at any Hilton (and another after $60,000 in annual spend), a $250 Hilton resort credit each cardmember year, and a $250 annual airline incidental credit. You’ll also have Priority Pass Select membership and a $100 credit towards any two-night minimum stay at Conrad and Waldorf Astoria stays worldwide. When you use your card at Hilton properties you’ll get 14x Hilton points, 7x on air travel, car rentals, and restaurants, and 3x on everything else.
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