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!
Winners of Round 3 Games 1-4
- Game 1: American Express Gold Card (76) v Chase Freedom (39)
- Game 2: Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Card (38) v Citi ThankYou Premier (69)
- Game 3: AmEx Everday Preferred Credit Card (35) v Chase Ink Preferred (73)
- Game 4: Chase Sapphire Reserve (82) v American Express Hilton Honors Surpass (31)
Round 3 is where we really start to see the favorite cards pull ahead! All of the winners this round have blown their competition out of the water, almost doubling the scores of their matchups. Chase wins 2 games, AmEx 1 game, and Citi stays in the competition by the skin on their teeth! Our readers are definitely still favoring the transferrable points – Ultimate Rewards, Membership Rewards, and ThankYou Points.
Game 5: Chase World of Hyatt v American Express Marriott Bonvoy Business
The hotel chain continues to be one of our travel community’s favorite hotel brands (clearly). 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 card member anniversary, and a second free night if you spend at least $15,000 during your card member 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 be have Discoverist status at Hyatt hotels just for holding the card!
The Chase Marriott Bonvoy Business will set you back $95 annually in exchange for 15 elite night credits per year, automatic Silver status (and Gold status after $35,000 in annual spend), and an annual free award night. The fee seems to be worth it to our readers! You’ll earn 6x Bonvoy points on Marriott transactions and 2x on all other transactions. Remember, that annual free night is capped and can only be redeemed at properties for 35,000 points or less for the night.
Game 6: American Express Platinum v Chase Sapphire Preferred
The original luxury card moves on to is still in the competition! After an overhaul a few years back, the Platinum card will put 5x Membership Rewards in your pocket for all airline purchases and on prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com. The card comes with a hefty $550 annual fee, but offers a $200 annual airline credit, $200 in Uber credits annually, $50 every six months for shopping at Saks Fifth Avenue, and a statement credit every four years towards TSA PreCheck or Global Entry. Platinum cardholders also have Hilton Gold, Marriott Gold Elite status, and access to the American Express Global Lounge Collection, including Centurion locations.
I’m not surprised to see the Sapphire Preferred moving on, but this will be a tough matchup for both cards. Last year the CSP made it to Round 3 (and lost against the AmEx Hilton Aspire!). Cardholders have benefited from double points on all travel and dining worldwide. New to the card: 5x Ultimate Rewards on Lyft rides through 2022. There are no foreign transaction fees and you have access to Chase’s long list of transfer partners for some great redemptions (and the Chase travel portal). Be prepared to pay a $95 annual fee.
Game 7: Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card v AmEx Blue Business Plus
This is a great match up against two of my favorite American Express cards. 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.
The Blue Business Plus is a fantastic card from American Express. double Membership Rewards on everything, up to $50,000 in annual purchases. There’s no annual fee and there’s often a 0% introductory APR as well. Some of the benefits of this card are in its simplicity, as there aren’t any other benefits to keep track of!
Game 8: Chase Freedom Unlimited v American Express Business Platinum
The Chase Freedom Unlimited offers 1.5x Ultimate Rewards on all purchases for no annual fee. No categories to remember, no complicated spend bonuses. This makes the Freedom Unlimited a great card for every day use, and especially for folks that aren’t deep into the travel hacking game. I often find myself recommending the Cit Doublecash, AmEx Blue Business Plus, or Chase Freedom Unlimited just for the simplicity and good earn rates on everything. Remember, you’ll still need another Chase card to unlock the ability to transfer your hard-earned points.
The Business Platinum card earns 5x Membership Rewards for airline purchases and on prepaid hotels from amextravel.com. You’ll also get 1.5x MR on any transaction over $5,000. Cardholders get to select an airline for 35% points back when booking their travel through the Pay with Points program (up to 500,000 points back per calendar year. There’s a hefty annual fee – $595 — but you’ll also get $200 in airline incidental credits each year, Global Entry/TSA PreCheck every four years, and access to American Express’s global lounge network.
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