Which Card Should You Get First: Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Freedom?

Signing up for credit cards through partner links earns us a commission. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. 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. 

Million Mile Secrets Reader Josh commented:

Hi.  I don’t have either the Sapphire Preferred card or the Freedom card. I have 3 other Chase cards that I got over the last 3 months.  I am looking to get both the Sapphire Preferred and Freedom cards in the future.  However, I am not sure the best way to do so.  I know that you must have the Sapphire Preferred card in order to accumulate Chase Ultimate Rewards points with the Freedom card instead of cash back.

My question is this: Can I get the Freedom card before the Sapphire Preferred card, accumulate the sign-up bonus, then transfer the Chase Ultimate Rewards points to the Sapphire Preferred account when I get it later?  Or do I have to get the Sapphire Preferred card 1st, establish a Chase Ultimate Rewards account, then get the Freedom card for the sign-up bonus to be in Chase Ultimate Rewards points rather than cash back?

Which Card Should You Get First Chase Sapphire Preferred Or Chase Freedom
Josh Can Transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards Points From the Freedom to the Sapphire Preferred Card for Flights to Places Like India, Regardless of Which Card He Got First

It doesn’t matter which card Josh gets 1st: the Freedom or the Sapphire Preferred.

But, I’d recommend he get the Freedom card 1st.  That’s because right now, Josh can get the limited-time 20,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points sign-up bonus.   Usually the Freedom card bonus is half that.

Which Card Should Josh Get First: Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Freedom?

Link:   Chase Freedom card

Link:   My Review of the Chase Freedom card 

Link:   Sapphire Preferred card

Link:   My Review of the Sapphire Preferred card

Josh can get 20,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points on the Freedom card after spending $500 in the first 3 months.

The sign-up bonus is normally 10,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points (or $100 cash back).  So this is a good deal!

That’s why Josh should get the Freedom card first. Then he can apply for the Sapphire Preferred card later and combine all his Chase Ultimate Rewards points together.

Having the Sapphire Preferred card will allow Josh to transfer his Chase Ultimate Rewards points to partner airlines and hotels.

The Freedom card is 1 of my favorite cards because it has no annual fee.  So Josh can continue to build a long relationship with Chase (which has the best miles and points cards) and increase his credit score.

Every quarter Josh can earn 5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points for every $1 he spends (up to a maximum of $1,500 per quarter) in bonus categories.

This quarter the 5X Chase Ultimate Rewards bonus categories are Amazon, Zappos, and select department stores.

Which Card Should You Get First Chase Sapphire Preferred Or Chase Freedom
Josh Can Earn 5X Chase Ultimate Rewards Points This Quarter at Zappos With His Freedom Card
Josh can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points from the Freedom to the Sapphire Preferred, (no longer offered) Ink Bold, or Ink Plus card and then to certain airlines and hotels:
 Chase Ultimate Rewards Airline Transfer Partners 
Aer LingusBritish AirwaysFlying Blue (Air France/KLM)
IberiaJetBlueSingapore Airlines
SouthwestUnited AirlinesVirgin Atlantic
 Chase Ultimate Rewards Hotel Transfer Partners 

Bottom Line

Josh doesn’t have to get the Sapphire Preferred card first.  He can get the Freedom card before he gets the Sapphire Preferred card.  Then he can combine his Chase Ultimate Rewards points later so he can transfer them to partners such as United Airlines and Hyatt.

Although, I recommend he get the Freedom card first.  That’s because he can get 20,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after spending $500 in the first 3 months on the Freedom.  This is a great offer because the normal sign-up bonus is 10,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points.

Have fun traveling, Josh!

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! :)

Join the Discussion!

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments