If you’ve been thinking about getting a travel points earning credit card, now is a great time to apply. The Chase Sapphire Preferred card has increased its sign up offer to the best its been in a long time.
Disclosure: I get no compensation, kickback, or other reward for blathering on about this card. (Maybe someday I will, but that’s mostly for the big time bloggers). I feel rewarded when I hear from friends who have been approved for this card, and who go on to use the points for wonderful adventures at a reduced cost.
The New Improved Offer
The “usual” sign up offer for the Chase Sapphire Reward Visa Card is 40,000 Ultimate Rewards Points after meeting the spend requirement. The new, improved offer is at least 25% better. If you are approved for the card now, you get 50,000 Ultimate Reward Points after spending $4000 in three months. In addition, if you add an authorized user who makes at least one purchase, you get an additional 5,000 points. Since you get at least 1 point for each dollar you spend on the card, you could end up with 59,000 points or more. The annual fee of $95 is waived the first year.
What Are Ultimate Rewards Points, and What Do You Do With Them?
Ultimate Rewards Points are the “currency” issued by Chase Sapphire Preferred. You earn one point for each dollar you spend. In addition, you earn double points for certain categories of spending, like dining and travel.
Then you use your points for travel adventures. At a minimum, you can use them to book travel through Chase, and get 1.25 cents per point. So, with 59,000 points, you could book a flight or other travel worth $737.
You can get even better value in most cases by transferring your points to a travel partner, like an airline or hotel. 59,000 points is enough to get a one way business class flight to Europe, or a round trip economy flight to Hawaii.
As always, please DON’T do this if you don’t pay off your credit cards in full every month. If you carry a balance on your card, you need to get a low interest rate credit card, not a travel rewards card.
If you decide to close the account next year to avoid paying the annual fee, be sure to use your points or transfer before you close the account.
If you have a regular travel partner (spouse, friend, whatever), BOTH of you should apply for the card so that you BOTH get the rewards.
Where Do I Apply?
Here’s a link to an excellent blog post by Gary Leff at View From the Wing. He is an expert on all things related to travel loyalty and rewards programs. His post does a great job summarizing the benefits of the card, and includes a link for the application.
If you have another favorite blogger, you might check their site to see if they have a link. I expect most will have a link within the next couple days.