Why travel sites are so obsessed with the Chase Sapphire Preferred

It’s the darling. The one credit card that travel sites rank at the top of their lists month after month, with few exceptions. There are truly hundreds of posts about it online (+1 now). The Chase Sapphire Preferred.

So what’s the deal?

Basically, this card earns the most valuable and flexible points of any rewards program. The card also has a sign-up bonus of 50K points after $4K in spend, easily equal to the best bonuses available.  The card also has quite a few unique travel benefits, including free primary rental car insurance, no foreign transaction fees, and very extensive travel & shopping insurance. The card also earns double points on travel and dining. It also has a waived annual fee for the first year, after which there is a $95 fee. Also, the card is gorgeous.

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Thank Snapchat for the fancy editing.

Also, people can earn a living off of convincing you to sign up with their referral links, which on this card now earns them 10K points, worth a minimum of $100.

Here are the deets, without the sign-up link:

  • Valuable, flexible points. You can use your points for 20% off your travel when booked through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal (ex. $500 flight costs only 40K points), or you can transfer your points at a 1:1 ratio to several airline and hotel programs, where you can get even better value for your points (ex. $500 flight might cost only 30K United Airlines miles). You can transfer your Chase points to the following programs at a 1:1 ratio:

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  • 55K potential bonus points. If you spend $4K within the first three months of having the card, you earn 50K points, which is worth at least $500, but can get you even more value than that by transferring points where you need them (see above). That spending requirement is pretty high, so you can add an authorized user to help you meet the $4K. Adding your first authorized user also earns you 5K points after they make their first purchase.
  • Travel benefits. Using the card to book your travel means you get trip cancellation or interruption insurance (up to $10K/trip), travel accident insurance (hope you don’t use this one, but up to $500K), lost luggage reimbursement up to $3K/passenger, and baggage delay insurance up to $100/day for any delay over six hours.
  • Primary Auto Rental Insurance. One of the big things that makes this card worth the $95 annual fee that you have to start paying your second year is the auto rental collision damage waiver this card provides, which is primary coverage (see more about that here). This alone could make the card worth the annual fee if you rent a car only a few times per year.

Here are a handful of the many, many posts on the card:

  1. 5 Reasons Chase Sapphire Preferred Should Be Your First Card in 2016
  2. Chase Sapphire Preferred Review: Why It’s Worth $95 
  3. Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card: Does It Live Up To The Hype?
  4. Chase Sapphire Preferred Review: A Must-Have for Any Traveler
  5. Chase Sapphire Preferred Card: Get The Most Value For Your Travel Rewards

I’d love to hear your comments, questions or thoughts on the card.

11 thoughts on “Why travel sites are so obsessed with the Chase Sapphire Preferred

  1. I have tried to use their primary insurance several times. Sometimes to the fault of Chase and other times to the fault of the car rental place, it never works (for me at least) making that feature worthless.

    Honestly, I think the CSP is the most overrated travel card ever. Use it for the sign up bonus then toss it, it’s not worth the money.


    • Thanks for the comment Jay! I haven’t had the misfortune of having to make a claim yet, so I can only speak to the good reviews I’ve heard from other users. I would love to hear more about why it didn’t work for you, and about the travel cards you would recommend.


      • No problem.
        Honestly it would take too long to explain, but the gist was, Hertz (Avis other times) wouldn’t send the right paperwork to me, to send to Chase, so Chase couldn’t file the claim. Then the few times that the claim did get sent right, Chase didn’t really go through insurance they just did a “not authorized charge” (the same type you would do if you called your card company and say I didn’t make this purchase and then they turn around and tell the place the item was purchased from that they owe them money for it). Anyway, by doing it that way, and not actually going through an insurance program, the rental car company turned around and charged me again for the same exact thing, still leaving me with the bill. Like I said, a very long complicated story that has happened a few times.

        As far as cards I use/recommend. I trust Amex with customer service, so I use the Platinum or PRG card, so that’s what I use for car renting. I also think MR points are the most valuable, but that’s just me. Everything else is kinda dependent on if I opened a new card (then I use that to hit the new spend) or if I need more hotel points or airline miles in life. So it’s all over the place at any given time.


      • Wow that sounds very sketchy. Thanks for the info. Not that it’ll help, but I just messaged Chase to see if they have any kind of comment on the situation you described.


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