Chase Sapphire Preferred vs. AmEx Green: Sapphire Comes Out Ahead

Both are excellent midlevel travel cards with good rewards and perks, so your decision boils down to a few factors.

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With a makeover that added more value to the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, it emerges as the winner in a head-to-head lineup against American Express® Green Card, although the latter will still appeal to AmEx loyalists.

Why does the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card come out ahead?

In addition to having a lower annual fee and larger sign-up bonus, it also earns more rewards across a greater number of categories. Still, American Express® Green Card offers some additional benefits that warrant a closer look.

Here’s how they stack up in major categories.

Annual Fees

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card's annual fee: $95.

American Express® Green Card's annual fee: $150.

Winner: The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

The lower fee on the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card makes it more appealing to the casual card user, especially since it doesn't correlate with lower value.

Welcome offers

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card's welcome offer: 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®.

American Express® Green Card's welcome offer: Earn 45,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $2,000 on purchases on your new card in your first 6 months. Terms Apply.

Winner: The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

While the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card has a higher spending requirement, it also offers greater value. Points are worth 1.25 cents each when redeemed for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. AmEx Membership Rewards® points are generally worth from 0.7 cent to 1 cent each, depending on how you redeem them. Terms Apply.

Rewards

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card's rewards:

  • 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.

American Express® Green Card's rewards:

  • 3 Membership Rewards points per $1 spent on eligible travel purchases.

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

  • 1 point per $1 spent on other purchases.

  • Terms Apply.

Winner: The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card comes out on top for its earning potential, but American Express® Green Card has some additional benefits that the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card doesn’t offer. See below for more details.

Benefits for using branded services

These benefits are specific to certain brands, meaning they could be highly useful if you’re interested in using the service and would pay for it anyway. Otherwise, they’re worthless.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card's benefits:

  • DoorDash. Get a one-year subscription to DashPass, DoorDash’s subscription service, which includes unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on orders over $12 on qualifying food purchases.

  • Lyft. Earn 5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022. That's 3X points in addition to the 2X points you already earn on travel.

American Express® Green Card's benefits:

  • Clear. Get up to $100 per year in statement credit toward a Clear membership. Clear costs $179 annually for an individual, and an additional $50 for up to three adult family members. Terms apply. Clear uses biometric information to verify your identity and speed you through eligible prescreening lines at participating airports and venues, though you'll still have to go through the X-ray line.

  • LoungeBuddy. Get up to $100 per year in statement credit when you use your card to buy airport lounge passes via LoungeBuddy. Terms apply. Single-use lounge passes are available at hundreds of airports and start at $25.

  • ShopRunner. ShopRunner membership offers free two-day shipping on eligible items from more than 100 online stores. Terms apply. ShopRunner membership normally costs $79 per year.

Winner: American Express® Green Card

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card offers limited-time offers for a couple of branded services. Overall, its branded service benefits are less valuable for most people. By contrast, branded service benefits are where the American Express® Green Card shines — especially if you want to use the $100 statement credit for making life at the airport more tolerable. Terms Apply.

Travel partners and perks

Both cards have midlevel travel perks, and both can transfer points to travel partners, such as airlines and hotel companies.

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.

Airlines:

  • Aer Lingus.

  • AeroMexico.

  • Air Canada.

  • Air France/ KLM.

  • Alitalia.

  • ANA.

  • Avianca.

  • British Airways.

  • Cathay Pacific.

  • Delta Air Lines.

  • El Al Israel Airlines.

  • Emirates.

  • Etihad Airways.

  • Hawaiian Airlines.

  • Iberia Plus.

  • JetBlue Airways.

  • Qantas.

  • Singapore Airlines.

  • Virgin Atlantic Airways.

Hotels:

  • Choice Hotels.

  • Hilton Hotels & Resorts.

  • Marriott Hotels & Resorts.

For transfer ratios, see AmEx's website.

Winner: It's a tie

Neither card is a clear winner here because it depends on which travel partners you prefer. For example, both cards transfer points to Marriott hotels. But among large domestic airlines, Delta accepts AmEx Membership Rewards points, while United Airlines and Southwest Airlines accept Chase Ultimate Rewards® points.

Both cards also have travel perks, such as trip-delay and baggage insurance. The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card offers a $50 annual credit on hotel stays purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.  We especially like the primary rental car coverage offered by the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, too. The American Express® Green Card offers secondary coverage, meaning your own car insurance company pays first in the event of an accident.

Acceptance abroad

Winner: The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Though American Express has expanded the number of merchants that accept its cards worldwide, Visa is still more widely accepted, giving the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card the edge. Neither card charges foreign transaction fees.

Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card
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Our pick: The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

The American Express® Green Card is a nice travel card with competitive rewards and perks. But unless you can fully use its statement credits for Clear and LoungeBuddy over several years, you’re likely to get more value from the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card.


All information about the American Express® Green Card has been collected independently by NerdWallet. The American Express® Green Card is no longer available through NerdWallet.

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