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My Chase Sapphire Reserve card definitely gets the most use among any of the travel credit cards in my wallet. I accumulate points really quickly because the card offers 3X Chase Ultimate Rewards points for travel & dining purchases.
In 2018, using the Sapphire Reserve for everyday purchases helped me to earn more than 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points (worth at least $1,200 in travel). I’ll likely use these points to get at least $3,000 worth of luxurious hotel stays or First Class flights.
One of my favorite Sapphire Reserve perks is the card’s $300 annual credit for travel purchases. This credit is so straightforward. When you use your card for ANY travel purchase (like Airbnb, airfare, hotels, Lyft, Uber, and many others), you will automatically be reimbursed, until you’ve spent a total of $300 on travel. In other words, Chase will pay for the first $300 in travel you spend each year with your card! For new cardmembers, a year is determined based on your card anniversary. I applied for the Sapphire Reserve when it first came out, so I still earn the travel credit based on a calendar year. Either way, it’s still a phenomenal benefit. Note: The 3x points on travel excludes the $300 travel credit.
To me, the $300 travel credit makes paying this card’s $450 annual fee a no-brainer. Because I’m effectively paying $150 ($450 annual fee – $300 travel credit). And the card gets me access to a 3X bonus category along with amazing trip protection benefits.
Apply for the Chase Sapphire Reserve
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Read our review of the Chase Sapphire Reserve
I think the Chase Sapphire Reserve is the #1 premium travel credit card. When you apply for the Sapphire Reserve, you can earn 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
The sign-up bonus is worth at least $750 when you redeem your points through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal. Because points linked to your Sapphire Reserve are worth 1.5 cents each toward travel through the Chase portal. Plus, you can move points from other Chase Ultimate Rewards point earning credit cards to increase the value of all your points.
My favorite way to use Chase Ultimate Rewards points is to transfer them directly to Chase’s airline and hotel partners, which include Hyatt, Marriott, Singapore Airlines, Southwest, and United Airlines. This strategy helped me secure multiple Business Class seats on an incredible family trip to New Zealand.
Here’s a video highlight of the trip made possible thanks to Chase Ultimate Rewards points and the Sapphire Reserve card!
Sapphire Reserve cardholders also get:
- 3X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on travel (excluding $300 travel credit) & dining worldwide
- 1X Chase Ultimate Rewards point on all other purchases
- $300 annual credit every cardmember anniversary for travel purchases such as airfare and hotels
- $100 statement credit for Global Entry
- Free Priority Pass Select membership for access to airport lounges
- No foreign transaction fees
- Visa Infinite benefits like $25 food and beverage credit at the Luxury Hotel Collection and complimentary car rental elite status with Silvercar
- Rental car discounts with National Car Rental and Avis
The card has a $450 annual fee, which is NOT waived for the first year. But the annual travel credit and airport lounge access can more than offset the annual fee.