The blogosphere has exploded with posts about the new Chase Sapphire Reserve card and I would not begrudge you for wondering whether the card is worth securing or just a marketing ploy from bloggers either trying to generate affiliate revenue or hoping to one day secure affiliate links. Believe me, I know what it is like to have Chase links and I miss them tremendously. But even without any sort of financial relationship with Chase I can wholeheartedly endorse this card…it is worth applying for and the 100,000 point sign-up bonus is just icing on the cake (but wonderful, delicious icing indeed).
The so-called “5-24” rules applies, so if you have applied for more than five cards (from any issuing bank) within the last two years that show up on your credit score, you will be automatically denied for the card. I know that will disqualify a lot of you for the card. There have been some reported exceptions by applying at your local Chase branch so do consider that option if you are over the 5-24 limit.
If you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred and wish to upgrade to the Chase Sapphire Reserve, you can do so and avoid the 5-24 rule, but you will not get the 100K sign-up bonus. Still, these benefits are still worth the upgrade if you’re going to have to wait for a year or longer before you are eligible to apply:
The $450 annual fee is steep, but on par with the American Express Platinum card, but in return you get:
- 3X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on travel & dining
- 1X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on all other purchases
- 1.5 cent per point when redeeming Chase Ultimate Rewards points via the Chase travel portal
- $300 annual credit for travel purchases such as airfare and hotels
- $100 statement credit for Global Entry
- Priority Pass Select for access to airport lounges
- No foreign transaction fees
- Visa Infinite benefits (for example, a $25 food and beverage credit at the Luxury Hotel Collection)
Note the $300 annual fee can offset any hotel or airline purchase, making it not just a more lucrative benefit than AMEX Plat (which offers $200 off ancillary purchases like wi-fi and baggage from one airline only) but a much more generous one.
Priority Pass will only allow complimentary access for yourself and two guests (although the wording is not clear), but it is still a nice feature and conceivably you could use the Chase Priority Pass card for yourself and the AMEX Priority Pass card for a guest.
Earning 3x the points on travel and dining (two of my largest spend categories) is huge and being able to always get at least 1.5 cent per point in value makes the card more valuable than a CapitolOne style card.
Will I apply for the new card? Absolutely. I am going to stop by my Chase branch this week and apply there: that way if there are any issues (I bought a house and refinanced over the last year, so have been judicious in applying for cards) I stand a better chance of getting approved.
The travel blogs are all heralding this card like a mighty chorus for good reason — this is a wonderful card that is well-worth applying for. Don’t miss out on this great sign up bonus and understand that if you spend at least $300 on travel each year, this card is worthwhile and more valuable than the Chase Sapphire Preferred.