Chase Sapphire Cards Add New Rewards Categories and Cardholder Perks

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and Chase Sapphire Reserve cardholders can earn more points for spending with Chase Ultimate Rewards starting Aug.16.

Extra points for Ultimate Rewards spending is among a set of new card features Chase announced Aug. 10. Other benefits coming this month include an anniversary point bonus for Chase Sapphire Preferred Card cardholders equal to 10% of the previous year’s spending.

What Is the Offer?

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card cardholders will earn five points per dollar when they book travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards, while Chase Sapphire Reserve cardholders will earn 10 points per dollar when they use Ultimate Rewards to spend on Chase Dining, hotel stays and car rentals, and five points per dollar on air travel booked through Ultimate Rewards.

[Read: Best Rewards Credit Cards.]

Chase is also increasing the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card’s earnings rate on dining from two to three points per dollar, and adding a three-point-per-dollar reward for eligible streaming and online grocery spending. Chase Sapphire Preferred Card cardholders will also be able to earn a $50 credit each year for hotel stays booked via Ultimate Rewards.

Starting later this year, Chase Sapphire Reserve cardholders will be able to make restaurant reservations through Chase’s Reserved by Sapphire program.

Is the Offer Worthwhile?

These changes increase the value of using Chase’s Ultimate Rewards program. Chase has not been offering separate earning rates for Ultimate Rewards spending on its Sapphire cards, though points are worth more when redeemed for travel through Ultimate Rewards instead of for cash.

New and current cardholders are eligible for the benefits, and Chase is not increasing either card’s annual fee — $95 for the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and $550 for Chase Sapphire Reserve.

Other existing benefits remain, including:

— Sign-up bonus for spending $4,000 in the three months after opening your account — 100,000 for the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, 60,000 for Chase Sapphire Reserve.

— No foreign transaction fees.

— Ability to transfer points to certain airline and hotel loyalty programs.

[Read: Best Travel Rewards Credit Cards.]

Comparing Rewards Programs

The Chase Sapphire cards join other Chase cards in earning more for Ultimate Rewards spending. The Chase Freedom Flex and Chase Freedom Unlimited cards each earn 5% cash back on eligible travel purchases made using Ultimate Rewards.

Unlike co-branded cards that offer bonus points for spending with a particular brand, Sapphire cardholders can earn points at the same rate for a wider range of purchases.

Should You Claim the Offer?

This offer makes Chase Ultimate Rewards more valuable, so current cardholders might expand their use of the rewards portal. If you’re considering opening a Chase Sapphire card, this new offer does not change the sign-up bonus, but it does up each card’s value without an increase in their annual fees.

[Read: Best Cash Back Credit Cards.]

For customers whose travel spending is focused on a particular hotel chain or airline brand, it might be a good idea to consider a co-branded card instead.

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