The Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ Card is a premium travel rewards card well-suited for frequent travelers. This is an astonishingly overpowered card with many readily available benefits for a $450 annual fee.
It offers goodies like an annual travel credit worth up to $300, airport lounge access, and waived application fee for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck. In the midst of many luxury travel rewards cards, the Sapphire Reserve stands out with its valuable perks for those who travel often.
Earn 3X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide and 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
New applicants can earn a 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That’s $750 toward travel when you redeem through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® portal.
Editor’s Note: If you’re uncertain about getting this card, you may want to get the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card first. It has a much lower annual fee of $95 (waived the first year). In addition, it’s a good way to see just how much value you can get out of the Ultimate Rewards program. However, you can’t get the sign-up bonuses on both cards.
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Chase Sapphire Reserve Card Summary
With the Chase Sapphire ReserveSM Card:
• Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
• Named "Best Premium Travel Credit Card" for 2018 by MONEY® Magazine
• $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
• 3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. $0 foreign transaction fees.
• Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
• 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
• Access to 1,000+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority PassTM Select
• Up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®
Learn More About This Card Here
Additional Advice: We recommend combining it with another Chase credit card, such as the no annual fee cash-back card Chase Freedom® Card. This way, you can transfer the points you earn on the Chase Freedom® to your Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ Card account and redeem them for more than 1 cent per point. Since both cards are on the Ultimate Rewards platform, you can also combine the points instead of using two different rewards platforms. That’s an immediate 25% increase on the value of your points when used for travel.
Earn 3X Points on Travel & Dining
The Sapphire Reserve offers the opportunity to earn points on two popular bonus categories. You’ll earn 3 points per $1 spent on both travel and dining.
Ride-sharing services, such as Uber and Lyft, count as travel and earn 3X points on the Sapphire Reserve. In addition to airlines, hotels, motels, car rentals, cruise lines and travel agencies charges, many other services like passenger trains buses, taxis, limos, ferries, toll bridges and highways, parking lots and garages also earn 3X points.
For dining, you earn 3X points at all restaurants, whether they’re fancy sit down places or fast food joints. You can also earn this bonus at many bars and some delivery services, such as Seamless and UberEats.
All other purchases earn 1 point per $1 spent.
Points are flexible to redeem on the Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ Card. Use your points to purchase airfare, reserve hotel rooms, and even rent a car. Your points are worth 1.5 cents apiece through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® travel portal. That’s a 50% bonus on your points right there.
By booking through the portal, you don’t have to worry about blackout dates or finding award space. As long as there’s a seat on sale for a flight you want, or a hotel room available to reserve with cash, you can pay with your points.
Any flight you book through the portal also counts as a revenue booking. This means you’ll earn miles and elite credit as well, getting you even more point value.
Point Transfer Program
The Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ Card is one of the few cards where you can transfer your accumulated points to select loyalty programs to help top off awards bookings at the respective hotel chain or airline.
Points transfer partners include:
- Airline programs:
- British Airways
- Flying Blue
- Singapore Airlines
- Virgin Atlantic
- Aer Lingus
- Hotel programs:
It’s best to transfer your points if you know exactly how you plan on using them. You’ll need to learn which partners are the best for where you’re going and search for award availability. Nonetheless, if you’re willing to put in this time and effort, you can get much more than 1.5 cents per points.
If you calculate your points value after transferring them to find them to be worth less than 1 cent per point, it’s best to hold onto them.
Another idea is to pay for the flight or hotel booking, then use your Ultimate Rewards® points retroactively as statement credit to pay for the purchase. This will ensure you’ll get a better value for your points.
The Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ Card is well known for the perks it offers. Although the $450 annual fee seems quite steep initially, you quickly realize that even an infrequent traveler can get tremendous value out of the card.
Enjoy $300 annual travel credit that can be applied toward purchases qualifying as travel, Priority Pass Select membership, and Application Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck. As a Visa Infinite card, you’ll have access to a selection of the perks that come along with the program. These include primary rental car insurance, trip cancellation and delay coverage, lost luggage reimbursement, a concierge service, access to the Luxury Hotel & Resort Collection, and more.
In fact, if you can use up the $300 annual travel credit, it’s like getting the rest of the perks for just $150 per year.
However, if you don’t travel often or you can’t take advantage of all the perks it offers, check out the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card instead. It offers 2X points on travel and dining for a $95 annual fee (waived the first year). Though it doesn’t offer all the perks the Sapphire Reserve offers, you can earn 1.25 cents per point when redeeming through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® travel portal. Or, you can see if any other credit card promotions here on BCS can entice you.
Disclaimer: This content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through the credit card issuer Affiliate Program.
The editorial content on this page is not provided by any of the companies mentioned, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone.