New 60,000 Point Welcome Bonus for Chase Sapphire Preferred
The Chase Sapphire Preferred is often considered one of the best starter credit cards for anyone looking to improve their travel rewards portfolio. The card has traditionally carried a 50,000-point sign-up bonus, but last week the bonus was increased to 60,000 points.
Part of what makes the Chase Sapphire Preferred card so great for beginners is its ease of earning. The card earns 2x points on travel and dining and 1 point per dollar on all other purchases. And that’s bonus isn’t just on airfare. It includes things like airfare, hotels, trains, Uber, buses, and just about any other form of transportation you can imagine.
In addition, you’ll earn 2x points on dining anywhere – including restaurants outside of the US. This is great if you travel a decent amount, especially abroad, as several other cards do not offer bonus points on international dining. I’ve even earned bonus points from a night out at the bar! While checking your credit card statement the next morning and saying, “I spend how much at the bar last night?” isn’t always fun, seeing you earned double points on it softens the blow…a little bit.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred now has an increased sign-up bonus of 60,000 points when you spend $4,000 within the first three months of opening the card. When redeeming through the Chase Travel Portal, you’ll be able to redeem points at 1.25 cents each. With a 60,000-point sign-up bonus, that’s $750 to use toward travel. In addition to this, flights purchased through the Chase Travel Portal are treated the same as purchasing a cash fare. This means you’ll still be able to earn miles from the airline, unlike typical award tickets.
However, there’s the potential to get even more value using Chase’s transfer partners. Let’s take a look at some of the possibilities.
First let’s take a look at Chase’s transfer partners:
- Aer Lingus AerClub
- Air France/KLM Flying Blue
- British Airway Avios
- Iberia Plus
- JetBlue TrueBlue
- Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer
- Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards
- United Airlines MileagePlus
- Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
- World of Hyatt
- IHG Rewards Club
- Marriott Bonvoy
Off-Peak Iberia Business Class
Iberia’s Avios program can be a great way to unlock some serious value. With the sign-up bonus alone, you’ll nearly have enough points for a round trip off-peak business class ticket between Madrid and Boston, Chicago, or New York. A one-way business ticket between these cities only costs 34,000 Iberia Avios, or 68,000 round trip during off-peak times.
Comparatively, this would cost 115,000 miles using American AAdvantage miles or 100,000 British Airways Avios.
Round Trip to Hawaii on Alaska, American, or Delta
Another great part of transferable points currencies is the ability to utilize airline alliances. Chase has transfer partners within all three major airline alliances. While you could transfer points directly to United, transferring to airlines such as British Airways or Air France/KLM can give you the opportunity to fly with American or Delta for even better value.
You can fly from the West Coast to Hawaii for 25,000 British Airways Avios round trip. British Airways is partners with both Alaska and American. This would cost 45,000 AAdvantage miles and at least 30,000 Alaska miles.
You can also fly from the east coast to Hawaii for 35,000 miles round trip on Delta (via Flying Blue).
Park Hyatt Tokyo
One of the best parts about Chase Ultimate Rewards points is their partnership with Hyatt. Amex Membership Rewards points transfer to Marriott, Hilton, and Choice, while Citi Thank You points do not transfer to any hotels. Unfortunately, there is not nearly as much value in transferring to those hotel chains as Hyatt. Transferring Chase Ultimate Rewards to World of Hyatt allows you to get some serious value on top luxury properties.
One of the best examples of this is the Park Hyatt Tokyo. Cash rates at this hotel commonly go for over $800 a night. However, for just 60,000 Ultimate Rewards points, you can book two nights at this fantastic property. That’s over $1,600 in value for 60,000 points!
In addition to the sign-up bonus and points earning, the Chase Sapphire Preferred also comes with some great benefits.
- No foreign transaction fees
- Primary rental car insurance
- Purchase protection – extends original manufacturer’s warranty by one year (does not include vehicles)
- Travel protection
Unfortunately, the $95 annual fee isn’t waived in the first year. However, the 10,000 additional points helps make up for that. At a minimum, those points are worth $100 when redeemed for cash back. They’re worth $750 when used through the Chase Travel Portal and potentially even more when transferred partners.
In addition, if you’ve received the sign-up bonus for either of the Chase Sapphire cards (Preferred or Reserve) in the past 48 months, you won’t be eligible for the sign-up bonus.
Also keep in mind that the Chase 5/24 rule applies to this card. That means if you’ve applied for five or more cards in the past 24 months, you will not be approved for this card.
Should you consider the Chase Sapphire Reserve instead?
If you’re familiar with travel rewards cards, you’ve probably heard of the Chase Sapphire Reserve card – the Preferred card’s big brother premium card. It’s the card in my wallet that I easily get the most use out of.
However, it does have some additional considerations that the Preferred card doesn’t have. For starters, the Chase Sapphire Reserve carries a $450 annual fee. However, a big chunk of that is offset by $300 in annual travel credits. These can be used for anything from an Uber ride to a first class flight. If you travel or use Uber a decent amount, you should easily get the full value out of the credit. This effectively reduces the annual fee to $150 – only $55 more per year than the Preferred card.
The card also comes with a Priority Pass Select membership. This membership grants you access to over 1,000 airport lounges around the world. You can also bring two additional guests for each lounge visit at no additional cost.
In addition to these benefits, the Chase Sapphire Reserve earns 3x points on travel and dining and 1 point per dollar on all other purchases. In addition to the increased earning, points can be redeemed through the same transfer partners or for 1.5 cents each through the Chase Travel Portal (instead of 1.25 cents per point with the Preferred).
The Reserve card has a 50,000-point sign-up bonus, which is currently 10,000 points less than the Chase Sapphire Preferred card. However, if you think you can get an extra $55 of value out of the Priority Pass membership and increased earning, it’s definitely worth considering the Chase Sapphire Reserve instead.
You shouldn’t apply for a credit card unless you’re confident you can meet the minimum spend for the sign-up bonus and you can pay off the full balance every month. If you’re confident in both of those things, the Chase Sapphire Preferred can be a great card to add to your arsenal.