Chase Is Beefing up Sapphire Preferred, Reserve Credit Cards

Changes include higher rewards on eligible dining and travel purchases and, for the Chase Sapphire Preferred, entirely new bonus categories such as streaming and online groceries.
Gregory KarpAug 10, 2021

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money.

Chase is upgrading the rewards and benefits of its popular Sapphire-branded travel credit cards, making them even more enticing in an era of ever-growing incentives.

The updates, which start Aug. 16, 2021, apply to:

Both cards' annual fees will remain the same: $95 for the Sapphire Preferred and $550 for the Sapphire Reserve.

Here are some of the most significant changes:

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card: Changes at a glance

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, in particular, was once a leader among travel credit cards. But over time, its rewards fell behind the market. This refresh, along with a monster sign-up bonus, vaults it back among the best that consumers can get in the $100-ish annual fee price tier:

Old version

New version

Ongoing rewards

  • 2 Chase Ultimate Rewards® points per $1 spent on travel and dining at restaurants.

  • 1 point per $1 spent on other purchases.

  • Through March 2022: 5 points per $1 spent on Lyft.

  • 5 points per $1 spent on all travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

  • 3 points per $1 spent on dining (including eligible delivery services and takeout).

  • 3 points per $1 spent on select streaming services.

  • 3 points per $1 spent on online grocery purchases (not including Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs).

  • 2 points per $1 spent on travel not purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

  • 1 point per $1 spent on other purchases.

  • Through March 2022: 5 points per $1 spent on Lyft.

Key benefits

  • Chase Ultimate Rewards® points earned on this card are worth 1.25 cents each when redeemed for travel booked through Chase.

  • Points can be transferred at a 1:1 ratio to more than a dozen travel partners.

In addition to the benefits at left, the updated card will offer the following:

  • A $50 annual credit on hotel stays purchased through Ultimate Rewards®.

  • Each account anniversary, cardmembers will earn bonus points equal to 10% of total purchases made the previous year.

New rewards and benefits

Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card
NerdWallet rating 
Learn More
  • Travel through Chase: 5 points per $1 spent on travel purchased through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® travel portal. This is up from 2 points per $1 spent, 2.5 times more in rewards.

  • Streaming services: 3 points per $1 spent on select streaming services.

  • Online groceries: 3 points per $1 spent on online grocery purchases (excluding Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs.)

  • Hotel credit: $50 annual credit on hotel stays purchased through Ultimate Rewards®. New cardmembers will start earning toward the credit immediately, and existing cardmembers will start earning after their next account anniversary.

  • Anniversary bonus: Each account anniversary, cardmembers will earn bonus points equal to 10% of total purchases made the previous year. That means $25,000 in spending will earn an additional 2,500 bonus points. Looked at another way, this increases all rewards rates by 0.1 percentage point. For example, streaming services rewards effectively have a rewards rate of 3.1%.

  • New card design: Available to new and existing cardmembers after Aug. 16, 2021.

Significant upgrade

  • Dining: 3 points per $1 spent on dining, including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out, up from 2 points per $1 spent. That’s a 50% hike in rewards for restaurant spending.

Important features that stay the same

  • Annual fee: $95.

  • Sign-up bonus: Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

  • 2X points on travel: Travel not booked through Chase continues to earn 2 points per $1 spent and 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. And through March 2022, the card will still earn 5 points per $1 spent with Lyft.

  • Redeem for travel: Chase Ultimate Rewards® points earned on this card are worth 1.25 cents each when redeemed for travel booked through Chase. So a dollar spent at a restaurant would earn 3 points, plus an anniversary bonus of 0.1 points. Then, if those points were redeemed for travel, that dollar spent at a restaurant would earn a total value of 3.875 points.

  • Transfer partners: You can often get even better value by transferring points to the card’s 1:1 transfer partners. These include United Airlines, Southwest Airlines, JetBlue Airways, Marriott and Hyatt.

Airlines

  • Air Canada (Aeroplan).

  • Aer Lingus.

  • Air France/KLM.

  • British Airways.

  • Emirates.

  • Iberia.

  • JetBlue.

  • Singapore.

  • Southwest.

  • United.

  • Virgin Atlantic.

Hotels

  • Hyatt.

  • InterContinental Hotels Group.

  • Marriott.

Nerdy tip: Both the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve® will also retain their existing limited-time offers with Peloton and DoorDash, as well as their limited-time "Pay Yourself Back" features.

Chase Sapphire Reserve®: Changes at a glance

The Chase Sapphire Reserve® is also hiking rewards rates, although it's not adding as much in the way of new perks.

Old version

New version

Ongoing rewards

  • 3 Chase Ultimate Rewards® points per $1 spent on travel and dining.

  • 1 point per $1 spent on other purchases.

  • Through March 2022: 10 points per $1 spent on Lyft.

  • 10 points per $1 spent on Chase Dining purchases through Ultimate Rewards®.

  • 10 points per $1 spent on hotel stays and car rentals purchased through Ultimate Rewards®.

  • 5 points per $1 spent on air travel purchased through Ultimate Rewards®.

  • 3 points per $1 spent on travel and dining not booked with Chase.

  • 1 point per $1 spent on other purchases.

  • Through March 2022: 10 points per $1 spent on Lyft.

Key benefits

  • Chase Ultimate Rewards® points earned on this card are worth 1.5 cents each when redeemed for travel booked through Chase.

  • Points can be transferred at a 1:1 ratio to more than a dozen travel partners.

  • Travel credit: Up to $300 a year in statement credit automatically applied to travel purchases.

  • Airport lounge access: Priority Pass Select airport lounge membership.

In addition to the benefits at left, the updated card will offer the following:

  • Access to “Reserved by Sapphire” restaurant-booking feature.

New rewards and benefits

Chase Chase Sapphire Reserve Credit Card
NerdWallet rating 
Learn More
  • Chase dining: 10 points per $1 spent on Chase Dining purchases through Ultimate Rewards®.

  • Chase hotel and rental-car bookings: 10 points per $1 spent on hotel stays and car rentals purchased through Ultimate Rewards®.

  • Chase flights: 5 points per $1 spent on air travel purchased through Ultimate Rewards®.

  • Exclusive bookings: Later this year, cardmembers will have “Reserved by Sapphire,” access to reservations at sought-after restaurants, including Canlis in Seattle, Redbird in Los Angeles, SingleThread Farms in Healdsburg, California, Reverence in New York and One Off Hospitality in Chicago.

Important features that stay the same

  • Annual fee: $550.

  • Sign-up bonus: Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

  • Rewards: 10 points per $1 spent on Lyft through March 2022. 3 points per $1 spent on travel and dining not booked with Chase. 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.

  • Redeem for travel: Chase Ultimate Rewards® points earned on this card are worth 1.5 cents each when redeemed for travel booked through Chase.

  • Travel credit: Up to $300 a year in statement credit automatically applied to travel purchases.

  • Airport lounge: Priority Pass Select airport lounge membership.

  • Transfer partners: These are the same as for the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, listed above.

Chase Sapphire Lounge by The Club

Chase also announced three locations that will feature new Chase-branded airport lounges:

  • New York’s LaGuardia Airport (LGA) in the new Terminal B.

  • Boston Logan International Airport (BOS) Terminal B to C Connector.

  • Hong Kong International Airport (HKG) Terminal 1.

Opening dates and additional lounge details will be announced later, Chase said. Lounges will be open to Chase Sapphire Reserve® cardmembers, as well as members of Priority Pass.

Get more smart money moves – straight to your inbox
Sign up and we’ll send you Nerdy articles about the money topics that matter most to you along with other ways to help you get more from your money.