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It’s been nearly 6 years since I opened my first miles and points credit card, the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred is a no-brainer for the first year. You’ll earn 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That’s worth at least $625 in travel (though it can be worth a lot more). Plus, the card’s $95 annual fee is waived the first year. So Chase is straight up giving you $625 in free travel.
But once that annual fee hits, you’ll have to decide if it’s a card you want to keep. Most folks do because of the Chase Sapphire Preferred benefits and perks!
Chase Sapphire Preferred Card Benefits and Perks
Apply Here: Chase Sapphire Preferred Card
Primary Car Rental Insurance
I use this perk far more often than any other.
When you pay for your rental car with the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you’ll automatically receive coverage for damage due to theft or collision to your rental car (you must waive the rental car agency’s CDW). So you don’t have to pay the $10+ per day for the in-house insurance provided by the rental company. This could save you a LOT of money, especially if you’re renting for weeks at a time!
In the event that you actually DO damage your rental car, filing a claim is easy.
During a trip to Ireland, I scraped my rental car against a cement pole. The rental agency charged my card $2,300 for the damage. I submitted a claim to Chase, and within weeks I received a check for $2,300! It was almost too good to be true.
The point is, the card will save you money when you decline the rental car insurance. And it will save you money when you actually wreck.
Trip Delay Reimbursement
This is another benefit I (unfortunately) have used frequently.
When you pay for at least a portion of your travel with your Chase Sapphire Preferred, you can receive up to $500 back per ticket when your trip is delayed more than 12 hours or requires an overnight stay. You’ll be reimbursed for things like:
- Ground transportation
Over Thanksgiving week, my flight was delayed and I missed my connection. I booked a room at the Grand Hyatt, ate breakfast in their fabulous restaurant, and received a check for $275 from Chase which covered every penny.
Baggage Delay Insurance
If your checked bags are delayed for 6+ hours, you’ll receive up to $100 per day (for up to 5 days), so long as you’ve paid for at least part of your fare with your Chase Sapphire Preferred.
If you don’t travel often and an airline has never lost your bag, you might not appreciate the value of this benefit. The situation probably seems highly unlikely.
IT’S COMING FOR YOU. Everyone loses a bag. And if you’re me, you lose baggage on the reg.
During a trip to Europe, my bag was delayed (lost) for FORTY days. That’s an extreme case, and probably won’t happen to you. But Chase cut me a check for $500 to reimburse me for the clothes, toiletries, etc. that I had to buy for my trip.
Huge pain. But hey, free clothes!
No Foreign Transaction Fees
If you’re traveling abroad, you’re throwing money away if you don’t use a card that waives foreign transaction fees.
Some cards will charge you a 3% fee for making purchases outside the country (that sometimes even includes reserving foreign hotels on the internet while inside the US!). The Chase Sapphire Preferred does NOT charge foreign transaction fees, so you can contract tennis elbow from furiously swiping and you won’t be charged a penny of dumb fees.
Extended Warranty Protection
This is the only benefit I don’t actively use. When you buy certain products with a US manufacturer’s warranty, you’ll get an additional year of warranty (only eligible for warranties of 3 years or less).
The Chase Sapphire Preferred is our favorite card for beginners. But it’s by no means a “beginner” card. I’m no beginner, and the Chase Sapphire Preferred still gets PLENTY of use from me. Its benefits alone (NOT points) have saved me thousands over the years. I have no intention of canceling, because it comes with:
- Trip delay insurance
- Rental car insurance
- Baggage delay insurance
- No foreign transaction fees
- Extended warranty protection
Let me know if you think the Chase Sapphire Preferred is worth the annual fee! And enroll in our newsletter to get more useful reviews and tips to traveling cheap: