Chase Sapphire Preferred Review
Chase designed the Chase Sapphire Preferred card to stand out from the pack. Made out of metal that gives it a weighty feel, the card’s appearance is certainly unique and is sure to invite conversation. And while some may be interested in the card based solely on its looks, it offers a number of other benefits which should intrigue a broader audience.
The first thing most people are likely to notice about the card is its generous 40,000 point sign up bonus (after spending $3,000 within your first 3 months) with an annual fee of $95 that is waived for the first year.
Flexible Redemption Options
But what are these points worth? The great news is that you have tremendous flexibility in how you redeem the points (called Ultimate Rewards points) that you earn. For instance, 40,000 Ultimate Rewards points can be redeemed for a $400 statement credit or $400 in gift cards.
Alternatively, you can redeem your points towards travel and get a 20% discount when you use Chase’s Ultimate Rewards portal. For example, when you book through Ultimate Rewards, you can redeem 40,000 points for a flight that costs $500.
You also have the option of transferring your points to a number of other frequent travel programs, at a 1:1 ratio, meaning 1 Ultimate Reward point equals one partner mile/point. The list of participating travel program partners includes:
- United MileagePlus
- Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards
- British Airways Executive Club
- Korean Air SKYPASS
- The Ritz-Carlton Rewards
- Marriott Rewards
- Hyatt Gold Passport
- Priority Club Rewards
- Amtrak Guest Rewards
Converting your Ultimate Rewards points to Southwest Rapid Rewards points is a bit trickier, as the conversion rate you get varies depending upon the fare type. Ultimate Rewards points can be redeemed at a rate of 1.67 cents per point towards Wanna Get Away fares, 1 cent per point towards Anytime fares, and 0.83 cents per point towards Business Select fares.
This means that your 40,000 sign up bonus is worth $668 when applied towards a Southwest Wanna Get Away fare.
Another excellent way to use your points is to transfer them to Hyatt, where award rooms can be had for between 22,000 points per night for their top hotels and 5,000 points per night for the lowest category hotels with no blackout dates, meaning your 40,000 point bonus can be worth up to 8 free hotel nights.
An excellent choice for travelers
The Chase Sapphire Preferred card also earns double the number of points per dollar spent on travel (including air, hotel, car rental, trains, travel agencies, taxis, etc.) and on dining purchases (from fast food and coffee shops to fine dining).
In addition, there are no foreign exchange fees when you travel and shop overseas. You’ll also earn a 7% annual points dividend on any points you earned during the year, so you actually earn 1.07 points per dollar spent on regular purchases and 2.14 per dollar spent on travel and dining, making it a particularly excellent choice for the international traveler.