Our Favorite Starter Travel Credit Card Now Has An 80,000-Point Sign-Up Bonus

Our Favorite Starter Travel Credit Card Now Has An 80,000-Point Sign-Up Bonus

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The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is quite possibly one of the most popular credit cards for people just starting to dip their toes into travel rewards. And rightfully so. The Sapphire Preferred offers a low annual fee, bonus categories, flexible redemption options and many other perks.

Even better, Chase just re-introduced an increased 80,000-point sign-up bonus on the Chase Sapphire Preferred, which new card holders can earn by spending $4,000 on the card within the first three months of opening the account. That’s a terrific bonus on one of our favorite travel credit cards for beginners.

And yet, there are several other reasons you might not be aware of to consider the Sapphire Preferred. Let’s look at six benefits of the Chase Sapphire Preferred to see why this card may deserve a place in your wallet.

1. That 80,000-point sign-up bonus While the new 80,000-point sign-up bonus on the Chase Sapphire Preferred isn’t the absolute highest bonus we’ve ever seen on this card, it’s higher than the 60,000-point sign-up bonus we typically see on this card. And it’s the highest sign-up bonus of any personal Chase Ultimate Rewards credit card right now. And there’s so much you can do with those points.

For example, you could redeem those 80,000 points for a four-night stay at the luxurious Grand Hyatt Baha Mar in the Bahamas. Or, if you’d prefer to use your points for air travel, 80,000 points can score you a round-trip ticket to Europe on United.

Best of all, points earned with the Chase Sapphire Preferred never expire as long as you keep any Chase Ultimate Rewards credit card open — even one of the cards that charge no annual fee. So you can always save up your points now for a badly-needed vacation down the road.

Click here to apply for the Chase Sapphire Preferred with an 80,000-point bonus.

2. Great transfer partners One of the best aspects of the Chase Sapphire Preferred is its ability to transfer your points to any of the 14 airline and hotel loyalty programs that are partners with Chase Ultimate Rewards.

Airlines Aer Lingus AerClub Air Canada Aeroplan Air France-KLM Flying Blue British Airways Executive Club Emirates Skywards Iberia Plus JetBlue TrueBlue Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Southwest Rapid Rewards United MileagePlus Virgin Atlantic Flying Club Hotels World of Hyatt IHG Rewards Club Marriott Bonvoy Points transfer from the Sapphire Preferred to all of these programs at a 1-to-1 ratio, meaning for every 1,000 points you transfer, you’ll get 1,000 points or miles in the airline or hotel program.

While transferring points and utilizing a partner program takes some time and research, it allows you to get potentially much more value for your points by booking luxury travel such as first or business class flights, or a resort stay in an exotic destination.

Now, if you prefer simplicity when booking your travel itineraries, you may prefer to redeem your points directly through Chase’s travel portal and get 1.25 cents apiece. While this is less value than what you can potentially get by transferring points to partners, for many, it’s an easier way to use your points.

But if you’re willing to strategize a bit and be flexible, you can come up with some pretty amazing travel itineraries by transferring points to a partner program.

3. Redeem points even when you’re not traveling If you’re not traveling right now, you can still use the points from this card for a number of other purchases you make at home, and at a great redemption rate too.

Chase Sapphire Preferred card holders get 1.25 cents per point when redeeming points via the card’s “Pay Yourself Back” tool. The tool allows you to use points to pay for purchases you make in categories that change from time to time. Right now, those categories are Airbnb and Away purchases made through awaytravel.com.

Since you can also get 1.25 cents per point when redeeming Sapphire Preferred points for travel via Chase’s travel portal, that means regardless of whether you redeem your points for travel or one of the “Pay Yourself Back” categories, the 80,000 points you earn from the current sign-up bonus are worth at least $1,000.

Get at least $1,000 in free travel with 80,000 bonus points from the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

4. Bonus categories and credits The Chase Sapphire Preferred earns 2 points for every dollar you spend on travel (or 5 total points if purchased through Ultimate Rewards), 3 points on dining, select streaming services and select online grocery purchases and 1 point per dollar on all other purchases. These are a pretty ideal set of bonus categories, plus many food delivery services also count as “dining” on the Preferred.

But there’s also a relatively new annual credit on the Sapphire Preferred: Up to $50 for hotel bookings when you book through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal. If you can take advantage of this credit each year, you’re effectively cutting the $95 annual fee in half even before taking advantage of any of the card’s other perks.

And the Chase Sapphire Preferred has another cool perk. Right now Sapphire Preferred card holders get a complimentary DoorDash DashPass membership for a minimum of 12 months as long as you activate it by Dec. 31, 2024. DashPass offers $0 delivery fees, a 5% credit back on pickup order and other benefits. It’s a great perk if you can utilize DoorDash in your area.

5. Pairing the Sapphire Preferred with other Chase credit cards The Chase Sapphire Preferred is one of several credit cards that are part of the Chase Ultimate Rewards points program, and if you have more than one of these cards, you can pool the points from all of them together into one big pot of points.

For example, the Chase Freedom Flex℠ is advertised as a cash back credit card, but the cash back it earns is actually issued in points. So even though the Freedom Flex is designed to earn 5% cash back on a set of bonus categories that rotate each quarter, it technically earns 5 points per dollar in those categories.

Now, if you only have the Freedom Flex, the most you can get for your points is 1 cent apiece (which is how 5 points equals 5% cash back). But by also having the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you can move your points from the Freedom Flex to the Sapphire Preferred and redeem them at a higher 1.25 cents per point for travel or with the “Pay Yourself Back” tool.

You can even transfer your pooled points to any of Chase’s airline and hotel partners, but only if you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred or one of the other premium Chase credit cards that charge

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Our favorite starter travel credit card now has an 80,000-point sign-up bonus

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