Chase Sapphire Preferred Losing Even More Benefits

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Chase Sapphire Preferred

For some reason the Chase Sapphire Preferred is the darling of the points & miles world. I personally liked the card, but didn’t see the benefit in paying the annual fee this past year and downgraded it to a Freedom card. (Freedom’s rotating 5x point categories and $0 annual fee make it a better card in my opinion.)

Last week it leaked that Chase was getting rid of the annual 7% points dividend on the Sapphire Preferred along with adding the benefit of primary car insurance. Via The Points Guy, today they released a full list of changes and they aren’t good.

Upcoming Changes to the Chase Sapphire Preferred

Here is a list of the upcoming changes to the benefits of the card.

  • Loss of the 7% annual points dividend as reported last week.
  • Pay yourself back with points is being discontinued. You can still supposedly cash in points for $.01 each if you have a Chase checking account. (Redeeming Ultimate Rewards points for cash is almost never a good idea.)
  • Card no longer earns an additional 1 point per dollar when booking travel through the Ultimate Rewards portal.
  • Loss of two points per dollar on travel???? (The original post at The Points Guy mentioned the card losing this benefit, but I don’t see mention of it on Chase’s site and he has since edited his post.)
This is a screenshot of The Points Guy's original post. I believe it was a mistake.
This is a screenshot of The Points Guy’s original post. I believe it was a mistake.

Chase has listed all of the upcoming changes along with detailed explanations on their website.

Conclusion

While I don’t believe the Chase Sapphire Preferred card is losing its category bonus of 2x points on travel as was originally reported, the changes are still mostly negative. In my opinion this card just doesn’t warrant the annual fee considering it can easily be downgraded to a Freedom.

One of the best benefits is being able to transfer points to travel partners & my Chase Ink card does that. The 2x points on travel are nice as well, but I just don’t spend enough in that category to cover the cost of the annual fee. With that said, primary car insurance can be useful if you already have the card and the sign up bonus is fantastic as well.

What do you think? Is the Chase Sapphire Preferred card worth keeping after the first year?


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10 COMMENTS

  1. As we dine out and travel a great deal for work and pleasure, the CSP is still our most often used credit card. (We both have one.)

    The only times we use other cards are:

    (1) When meeting minimum spend requirements for bonus on another credit card.
    (2) Staying at SPG hotels/restaurants in the USA, for which we use SPG Amex (6x since we’re SPG elite)
    (3) Staying at Hyatt hotels in the USA, for which we use SPG Amex (5% back OPEN)
    (3) Monthly DirecTV, Verizon/AT&T mobile phone, and home/office phone bills for which we use Chase Ink (5x)
    (4) Airfare purchases for which we use Amex Premier Gold (3x)
    (5) Non-bonus spending for which we use SPG Amex (1x) or Barclay Arrival (2x) or Amex for MRs

    We travel a lot, so having Chase URs and SPG points for premium award flights and free hotels and hotel upgrades are critical for us.

    • Your strategy seems solid. When I did the calculations at the end of my last cardmember year, I figured I would get more benefit from shifting my spend to the Arrival card since I don’t have enough bonus spend on the Sapphire to justify keeping it.

      The fact that I have a lot of UR points from the Ink factored in and so did the 5x rotating categories on the Freedom which I downgraded to. Thanks Bill!

  2. So, the CSP has been losing value faster than uh.. ok, I can’t think of something that’s been losing value as fast, maybe Uber… That said, with the increase in value of the Ink, it seems like it is increasingly a no brainer to dump the CSP. I’ll probably hold onto it until just shy of my next annual fee, but, really the only real remaining discriminator is the customer service (which in my experience has been exemplary).

  3. Ah, but $10K worth of trip cancellation insurance is a biggie for people who occasionally have to cancel a trip because our back is in spasm or we’ve had knee surgery and can’t sit on a plane for a few months. I think Chase will take a big hit by dropping the 7% bonus … I’ve not booked any travel direct with them but taking away the 1x bonus seems odd.

    • That is a good point. Keep in mind though that most other cards carry $5k worth of coverage, so it isn’t all or nothing. For people who have health or other issues which cause frequent last minute cancellations, that extra coverage is probably worth it. I don’t foresee that being the case for most people.

      Thanks Judy!

      • The thing that is wonderful about today is being able to learn from people like you, Shawn. I never knew I had any cancellation coverage at all with my Chase or AmEx cards … never worried about it until I had to cancel a cruise several years ago for some physical reason … paying all those fees made me crazy.

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