Showdown: Capital One Savor vs Chase Sapphire Preferred – Which Is Best for Your Spending?

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Showdown:  Capital One Savor vs Chase Sapphire Preferred – Which Is Best for Your Spending?

Harlan VaughnShowdown:  Capital One Savor vs Chase Sapphire Preferred – Which Is Best for Your Spending?Million Mile Secrets Team

We devote thousands of hours of research to help you get Big Travel with Small Money. You support us by signing-up for credit cards through partner links which earn us a commission. Here’s our full Advertising Policy.

We love a good card battle at Million Mile Secrets, especially with 2 tough contenders!

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and newly revamped Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card have a lot of strengths in common, like:

  • Sign-up bonus worth $500 in cash back
  • Bonus points / cash back for dining
  • Waived annual fee ($95) the first year

They’re both excellent cards.  But it’s the differences that decide which is the better choice for you.

There Are a Few Factors to Consider If You’re Choosing Between the Chase Sapphire Preferred and Capital One Savor Cards

I’ll show you the major differences so you can pick the right one.

Chase Sapphire Preferred or Capital One Savor: Which Card Should You Get?

Let’s look at the bonus offers and earning categories for each card.

1.   Chase Sapphire Preferred

Apply Here:   Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

Our Review:   Now 50,000 Points!  Best Bonus Ever for Chase Sapphire Preferred!

When you open the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you’ll earn 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.  And you’ll get:

  • 2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 on travel and dining
  • 1X Chase Ultimate Rewards point per $1 on all other purchases

2.   Capital One Savor

Apply Here:   Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card

Our Review:   The Capital One Savor:  A Card Dedicated to All You Foodies (And It Now Comes With a $500 Bonus!)

When you open a new Capital One Savor card, you’ll earn $500 cash back after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.  You’ll also get:

  • 4% cash back on dining
  • 4% cash back on entertainment
  • 2% cash back at grocery stores
  • 1% cash back on all other purchases

Which Has the Better Sign-Up Bonus?

The 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points you can earn with the Chase Sapphire Preferred are worth $500 when you redeem them for cash or a statement credit.

But when you book travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal, your points are worth 1.25 cents each.  So 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points are worth $625 toward travel (50,000 points X 1.25 cents per point)!  


Plus, the points you earn are flexible because you can transfer them at a 1:1 ratio to Chase’s valuable airline and hotel partners.  When you transfer your points, you can book travel experiences like Business Class award tickets, nights at luxury hotels, and so much more – which can be worth $1,000s of dollars.  That’s why it’s the top card we recommend for beginners.

If You Want Cash Back, the Bonus Offers Are Equal. But the Chase Sapphire Preferred Has the Edge If You Want to Travel!

Compare that with the Capital One Savor card bonus, which is worth $500 in cash back.  Unlike flexible points, you can only earn cash back with this card.

Winner:   Chase Sapphire Preferred 

Which Minimum Spending Requirement Is Easier?

Link:   How to Meet Credit Card Minimum Spend – 40 Powerful Ways!

With the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you’ll need to spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening to earn the welcome bonus.

And with the Capital One Savor, you earn the bonus after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.

Spending $4,000 over 3 months comes to ~$1,333 per month, compared with $1,000 per month if you only need to spend $3,000.

While the edge goes to Capital One Savor here, remember these easy ways to meet your spending requirements.

Winner:   Capital One Savor

The Bonus Categories Only Overlap for Dining

The Chase Sapphire Preferred earns 2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 for travel and dining, then 1X Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 on other purchases.

And Capital One Savor earns 4% cash back for dining and entertainment, 2% cash back at grocery stores, and 1% cash back on other purchases.

The bonus categories for both cards are broad.  Dining includes restaurants, cafes, bars, fast food places, coffee shops, and more.  And I recently wrote how surprisingly big the entertainment category is with the Capital One Savor.

Your Personal Spending Habits Break the Tie for This One! I Used Chase Ultimate Rewards to Visit Ireland, and Prefer Flexible Points. But That’s Just Me!

Your spending is personal.  So it comes down to where you spend the most – and if you want to earn cash back or flexible bank points.

Let’s say, per month, you spend:

  • $400 on travel
  • $400 for dining out
  • $200 for entertainment

With the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you’d earn 1,800 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per month (1,600 points for travel and dining + 200 points for entertainment), or 21,600 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per year.

That’s worth:

  • $216 in cash back
  • $270 towards paid travel (at 1.25 cents each)
  • Variable amount (likely much more) when you transfer to travel partners

And with the Capital One Savor, you’d earn $28 per month in cash back ($24 for dining and entertainment at 4% + $4 at 1%), or $336 per year.

The winner seems to be the Capital One Savor.  But you may spend a lot more (or less!) on travel or entertainment.  And it’s hard to place a value on flexible points earned with the Chase Sapphire Preferred – but you can potentially get huge value from them.

For example, you can transfer 15,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points to British Airways for a short-haul round-trip award flight.  I’m flying from Dallas to Orlando next month and saved nearly $400 on flights!  So the value lies in how you redeem them.

If Cash Is King for You, the Capital One Savor Is a Better Deal – Especially If You Like to Dine and Get out of the House!

But if you don’t want to think about transferring points or blackout dates, or just like straightforward cash rewards, the Capital One Savor is better.  Run the numbers and see what you find – you might surprise yourself!

Winner:   Tie

Annual Fees & Foreign Transaction Fees

Both annual fees are $95.  And they’re both waived the first year!

Plus, neither card has foreign transaction fees.  So you can dine or travel all around the world without worry.

Winner:   Tie

What About Other Card Benefits?

Both cards have benefits tied to their respective bonus categories.  The Chase Sapphire Preferred is all about travel, and the benefits reflect that.

You’ll get primary car rental insurance, which I’ve personally used to save nearly $700 on a tiny ding.  And the card provides trip delay reimbursement up to $500 per ticket when your trip is delayed more than 12 hours.

Dinged 692 For A Tiny Rental Car Dent How I Escaped This Outrageous Charge
The Chase Sapphire Preferred Has Better Travel Benefits. But That’s Because It’s Primarily a Travel Rewards Card

Capital One Savor has secondary car rental insurance, which isn’t nearly as good.  And it doesn’t have trip delay insurance at all.

But again, the benefits reflect the bonus categories, and the Chase Sapphire Preferred is better positioned as a travel rewards card.

Winner:   Chase Sapphire Preferred

Consider These Rules Before Applying!

If you’re new to the miles & points hobby, we recommend you open all the Chase credit cards you want first.  Because they tend to have the best travel rewards, and strict application rules.

If you’ve opened 5+ cards from any bank (NOT counting Chase business cards and these other business cards) in the past 24 months, you won’t be approved for their best cards.

And note that Capital One doesn’t process more than 1 personal credit card per 6 months.  So if you’ve opened another Capital One personal card in the past 6 months, you should wait until you’re over the 6-month mark.

Of course, you can also get both cards if you qualify!

Bottom Line

At first glance, the Chase Sapphire Preferred and Capital One Savor have a lot in common:  Bonuses worth $500 in cash back after meeting minimum spending requirements, a dining bonus category, and the same $95 annual fee that’s waived the first year.

Beyond that, the best card for you depends on:

If you’re new to miles & points, I recommend getting Chase cards first, then filling in the rest.

Both of these cards are valuable in different ways.  And if you like each one individually, you can always get both!

That said, my personal recommendation is with the Chase Sapphire Preferred, which is the best for beginners.  What do you think of this showdown?

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Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred® named a 'Best Travel Credit Card' by MONEY® Magazine, 2016-2017
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
  • No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards

More Info

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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I couldn’t recommend any close friend to apply for Capital One Savor over Chase Sapphire Preferred. Every available Chase 5/24 slot is extremely valuable. I would only choose the best Chase cards until reaching 5/24. Only after that point would I expand the search to non Chase cards.