Being the more expensive card, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® earns more bonus points. Whether it’s worth the difference in annual fees depends on how much you spend in those bonus categories. If you have high spending in these areas, you’ll want the card with the highest reward rate.
These cards are part of the Chase Ultimate Rewards program. When you know how to use Chase Ultimate Rewards points, they can be some of the most valuable travel points out there. This rewards program offers two excellent travel redemption options:
- Transfer points to loyalty programs of airlines and Chase partner hotels.
- Use points for cash travel purchases through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal.
With transfers, these cards are effectively equal. You can send 10,000 Ultimate Rewards points to any partner and get 10,000 points in that partner’s loyalty program. It doesn’t matter if you transfer points from the Chase Sapphire Reserve® vs. Preferred® Card. The value you get from these points will depend on the plane ticket or hotel stay you book. Savvy shoppers can often get more than $ 0.02 to $ 0.03 per point, especially when booking an award plane ticket.
The only difference in the redemption options with these cards is redemptions through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal. When you do, you convert points into cash to make a travel purchase. The value you receive per point depends on the card you have. Here’s the value you’ll get with the Chase Sapphire Reserve® vs. Preferred® Card:
- Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card: $ 0.0125 per point
- Chase Sapphire Reserve®: $ 0.015 per point
If you plan to use your points this way, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® offers more value.
Interestingly enough, it’s the Chase Sapphire Preferred® card that offers the biggest signup bonus. It offers 100,000 points if you spend $ 4,000 on purchases within three months of opening the account. The Chase Sapphire Reserve® offers 60,000 points with the same minimum spend and the same time frame.
Access to the airport lounge
Another benefit of the Chase Sapphire Reserve® that the Chase Sapphire Preferred® card does not offer is free membership in Priority Pass Select.
With this membership, you can access the Priority Pass network of over 1,300 airport lounges. Priority Pass also has a few dozen airport restaurants in its network. If you visit one of these restaurants, your membership will entitle you to a purchase credit for your meal. Credit amounts vary by restaurant, but most offer around $ 28, and you can usually get credits for up to two guests as well.
It’s one of those perks that some people love and others just don’t care about. If you rarely wait at the airport, lounge access may not be a big factor in evaluating Chase Sapphire Reserve® vs. Preferred® Card. For frequent travelers facing delays or long layovers, lounge access can be worth a steep annual fee.
Both cards offer a free one-year subscription to DashPass which must be activated by December 31, 2021. With this subscription you get unlimited deliveries with a $ 0 delivery charge and reduced service charge for orders. greater than $ 12. This applies to qualifying food purchases with DoorDash.
The Chase Sapphire Reserve® also includes a free one-year subscription to Lyft Pink when you activate it before March 31, 2022. This subscription gets you 15% off every Lyft ride and other benefits, including including priority transfers to the airport and a more relaxed cancellation policy.
As you would expect from any quality travel credit card, neither charge a foreign transaction fee.
The last word
In the Chase Sapphire Reserve® showdown against the Preferred® card, there are no wrong choices. These are two popular travel credit cards for a reason. Ultimately, the question of which Chase Sapphire card is the best depends on how many perks you want and how much you spend.
If you are thinking of using all the benefits of the Chase Sapphire Reserve®, this card is for you. After factoring in his spending credits, his annual cost drops to $ 170, just $ 75 more than the Chase Sapphire Preferred® card. For a frequent traveler who can take advantage of airport lounge access and a Lyft Pink membership, these perks are easily worth over $ 75. The higher reward rate is also a big plus if you spend a lot on Lyft travel, meals, and rides.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is the top rewards credit card for those who don’t need all the bells and whistles. If you’re not going to use them, why pay for them? It’s also a good choice if you’re new to travel cards and still don’t know what you want. It costs less and offers a bigger signup bonus, so it might be a better card to start with. You can always decide to upgrade to Chase Sapphire Reserve® later.
To learn more, see our guides on the Benefits of Chase Sapphire Reserve and the Benefits of Chase Sapphire Prefered.