The 4 Chase Cards I Currently Have (And Why!)

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The 4 Chase Cards I Currently Have (And Why!)

Million Mile SecretsThe 4 Chase Cards I Currently Have (And Why!)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.

Update:   One or more card offers in this post are no longer available.  Check our Hot Deals for the latest offers. 

Over the years, I’ve earned lots of miles and points from credit card sign-up bonuses.

But there are 4 cards I’ve kept year after year because they have great ongoing benefits.  And earn lots of bonus points on everyday spending!  

With rumors that Chase might make it tougher to be approved for their cards in April 2016, you might consider opening 1 or 2 more before then.

Because you can get free stays at top hotels, and award flights to nearly anywhere in the world when you choose the right cards.

The 4 Chase Cards I Currently Have And Why
I’ve Used My Chase Cards to Unlock Amazing Trips All Over the World, Including to Sydney! Find Out Which 4 Chase Cards I Have Now

I’ll tell you about the 4 Chase cards I have in my wallet.  And why I’ve decided to keep them!

Which Chase Cards Do I Think Are Keepers?

Chase credit cards have been a big part of my personal Big Travel with Small Money strategy.  Depending on your situation, you might decide other cards are a better fit.  And that’s great, because there are a lot of fantastic choices!

Here are the 4 Chase cards I’ve picked to keep for the long-haul.  In fact, I’ve had to close other Chase cards to make room for these.  Or I decided after a while the other ones no longer fit my travel or spending habits.

Note:   There are rumors that starting April 2016, Chase will make it tougher to be approved for ANY of their cards (including airline & hotel cards) if you’ve opened ~5+ credit card accounts with any bank within the past 24 months.

1.   Chase Sapphire Preferred 

Link:   Chase Sapphire Preferred

This is my #1 card of all.  I keep it because Chase Ultimate Rewards points are my favorite kind of points!

And it’s also the top card I recommend if you’re starting out with miles and points.

You’ll earn 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points after spending $4,000 on purchases within the 1st 3 months of opening your account.  The $95 annual fee is waived the 1st year.

The 4 Chase Cards I Currently Have And Why
The Chase Sapphire Preferred Earns 2 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points per $1 Spent on Travel and Dining. I Love to Eat Out and Travel, So This Card Is a No-Brainer for Me!

Another thing I like about this card is you talk to a person when you call.  That’s why I call this the best card for impatient people.

This is 1 of my go-to cards while overseas.  Because when I use it there are NO foreign transaction fees.  I also like earning 2X points when I try new restaurants in the places I visit.

It also comes with excellent built-in trip delay and cancellation insurance and purchase protection.  I use it when renting cars because it has primary rental insurance (and I like to drive fast!).

Rumor 100,000 Chase Ultimate Reward Point Sign Up Bonus With New Card Coming Soon
Chase Ultimate Rewards Points Directly to Airline & Hotel Partners When You Have the Chase Sapphire Preferred, Ink Plus, or Ink Bold Cards!

Plus, when you have the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, you can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to air and hotel transfer partners including United Airlines, Southwest, and Hyatt (some of my favorites!).  I’ve made unforgettable Big Travel memories with Chase Ultimate Rewards points!

If I could only keep 1 card, it would definitely be the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

2.   Chase Freedom

Link:   Chase Freedom

The Chase Freedom has quarterly rotating 5X points (5% cash back) bonus categories.  In the past, this has included department stores, Amazon.com, and dining.  So it’s a great card to have because it earns bonus points for everyday spending.

You’ll earn $150 (15,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points) after spending $500 on purchases within the 1st 3 months of opening your account.

The 4 Chase Cards I Currently Have And Why
Like to Shop, Dine Out, or Earn Bonus Points on Gas? If You Said Yes to Any of Those, the Chase Freedom Is an Excellent Card to Add to Your Wallet!

And through March 31, 2016, you can earn 5X points on gas and commuter expenses when you activate the bonus.

If you spend the $1,500 maximum each quarter, you’ll earn an extra $300 per year ($1,500 x 5% x 4 quarters).

Even better, if you also have the Chase Sapphire PreferredChase Ink Plus, or (no longer offered) Chase Ink Bold, you can transfer your points to Chase Ultimate Rewards travel partners.  So you can earn up to 30,000 extra Chase Ultimate rewards points each year with the Chase Freedom card!

It also has NO annual fee.  So it’s a terrific card to keep forever because it’s free to have.  And keeping your cards open for a long time can increase the average age of your accounts and potentially improve your credit score.

3.   Chase IHG Rewards

Link:   Chase IHG Rewards

I like the Chase IHG card because you get a free night certificate each year on your cardmember anniversary.  And you can use it at ANY IHG hotel in the world!

You’ll earn 70,000 IHG Rewards points after spending $2,000 on purchases within the 1st 3 months of opening your account.  And an additional 5,000 IHG points when you add an authorized user and make a purchase in the same timeframe.

The 4 Chase Cards I Currently Have And Why
Rooms at the InterContinental San Juan in Puerto Rico Can Cost Nearly $500 a Night! Stay for Free in Exchange for a $49 Annual Fee With the Chase IHG Card

The Chase IHG card has a $49 annual fee which is waived the 1st year.  But considering a room at their fanciest hotels, like the InterContinental San Juan, can cost close to $500 a night, I’ll gladly pay it to get a free night each year!

Emily and I stayed at the InterContinental Thalasso Bora Bora.  And you can stay here too with the annual free night certificate.  Or any other IHG hotel!

4.   Chase Ink Bold

Link:   Chase Ink Plus

The Chase Ink Bold is no longer available for new sign-ups.  So I’ve had it for a while.  But you can still get the Chase Ink Plus card, which has very similar features.

It’s worth getting for its sign-up bonus AND points-earning potential.

You’ll earn 60,000 Ultimate Rewards after spending $5,000 on purchases within the 1st 3 months, which is enough for Big Travel like 2 domestic round-trip coach award flights on United Airlines.  Or 2 nights at the best Hyatt hotels in the world, like the Park Hyatt Paris-Vendome where Emily and I stayed.

The 4 Chase Cards I Currently Have And Why
Do You Have a Cell Phone, Internet, or Cable Bill? You Could Earn Thousands of Extra Chase Ultimate Rewards Points per Year!

I like the powerful bonus categories.  You’ll earn:

  • 5 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 spent on cable, internet, and phone service on up to $50,000 in spending per year
  • 5 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 spent at office supply stores on up to $50,000 in spending per year
  • 2 Chase Ultimate Rewards per $1 spent at gas stations on hotel rooms purchased directly from the hotel on up to $50,000 in spending per year (combined)
  • 1 Chase Ultimate Rewards point per $1 spent on other purchases

There are NO foreign transaction fees.  And the $99 annual fee is NOT waived the 1st year.

The 5X bonus categories are huge!  

This is a small business credit card.  But you don’t need to earn millions in revenue to get this card.  As long as you aim to make a profit, it’s worth putting in an application.  Here’s how you might already qualify.

Say, for example, you spend $100 per month each on your cell phone bill and cable bill.  And $50 on your internet service.  That’s $250 per month, and $3,000 per year.

You’d earn 15,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points ($250 per month X 12 months X 5X points = 15,000 points).  Even if you got a statement credit where each point is worth 1 cent, you’d get $150, which more than covers the annual fee.

The 4 Chase Cards I Currently Have And Why
Get a Free Night at a Hyatt Category 4 Hotel, Like the Hyatt Fisherman’s Wharf, From Common Monthly Expenses!

But you’d do much better to transfer to Chase Ultimate Rewards points travel partners.  Because that’s enough for:

All for paying for expenses you already have!  In my book, that makes this card a keeper!

We don’t earn a commission on this card, but again, we’ll always let our readers know about the best deals.

Bottom Line

Chase has lots of cards with incredible sign-up bonuses, terrific benefits, and rewards for ongoing spending.  The 4 I currently have in my wallet are:

If I had to pick just 1, I’d keep the Chase Sapphire Preferred because you have access to valuable Chase Ultimate Rewards air and hotel transfer partners.  Because of that, it’s also the top card I recommend if you’re new to miles and points.

Remember, Chase may be tightening their application rules starting April 2016.

Tell me which Chase card is your favorite!

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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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@Boonie – As long as you haven’t opened more than 5 cards in the past 2 years, it’s worth a shot!

@MMM – Yes, because Chase considers them different cards. You are eligible to apply for the Chase Ink Plus if you have another business. And you have the best chance of being approved if you haven’t opened more than 5 cards in the past 2 years.

Hi, I currently have ink bold card which I was expecting to change to plus soon but never happened. still have bold card on it after receiving a new card with the chip. Do you think I could still apply for ink plus card?

Brain,

For your situation, you are spot on!!!

@Boonie – Hi, canceling one card won’t help with the new 5/24 rule. I would think your best bet is to try applying for the new Chase cards you want till you max them out with the new system. Then take a look at your cards and decide down the road what you should cancel. When the cards start coming up for their annual fee is a good time to reconsider that. No reason to cancel them before that – all that happens is your max credit line across cards starts getting smaller which puts a small dent in your credit score. The only thing that could happen by keeping an extra chase card open is that Chase could conceivably say you have too much credit for a new card. If that happens you could politely ask them to transfer some credit off an existing card. Rule of thumb, though, is never to ask for that credit line shift unless they actually tell you that they can’t extend any more credit to you.

If you could get only one more Chase card I would recommend going for the Chase Sapphire. If you can get two, make the second the Freedom before the 5% categories potentially go away (any day now).

HTH

@Boonie – Canceling one won’t help with the new 5/24 rule. I would think your best bet is to try applying for the new Chase cards you want till you max them out with the new system. Then take a look at your cards and decide down the road what you should cancel. When the cards start coming up for their annual fee is a good time to reconsider that. No reason to cancel them before that – all that happens is your max credit line across cards starts getting smaller which puts a small dent in your credit score. The only thing that could happen by keeping an extra chase card open is that Chase could conceivably say you have too much credit for a new card. If that happens you could politely ask them to transfer some credit off an existing card. Rule of thumb, though, is never to ask for that credit line shift unless they actually tell you that they can’t extend any more credit to you.

If you could get only one more Chase card I would recommend going for the Chase Sapphire. If you can get two, make the second the Freedom before the 5% categories potentially go away (any day now).

HTH

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