Today I want to talk to you about the top credit card that I’ve been using from Chase called the Chase Sapphire Reserve card and we will see if it is the right card for you.
So I’ve been using the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, which is a predecessor for about four years. And it’s been great in terms of redeeming points and earning bonuses, so the Chase Sapphire Reserve card is very similar to it. It has a triple point earning bonus for all travel hotels flights and car rentals, so that’s an improvement on the predecessor of the Chase Sapphire Preferred card.
It also has a 100,000 points earning bonus, if you spend $4,000 in the first three months since you opened the card. A lot of people have been asking me where they can spend these four thousand dollars. It appends on your expenses, holidays, and large events, that’s the time you should open this card.
So my wedding is coming up at the end of this year, my photographer cost $4,000, so I spent all of my expenses of the card the first week of opening it. I already hit my hundred thousand point bonus, so you should think carefully about opening the card when you have large expenses coming up.
So this card does have a $450 annual fee on it, which a lot of people get scared of. But let’s just talk about that real quickly, there is a $300 credit that gets automatically credited back to your statement when you use some travel expense. If you incur some tax expense or you book a flight to somewhere or you book a hotel up to 300 dollars, that will come back to your bank account automatically and you’ll see it on the card.
It’s really $150, unless you absolutely do not travel at all. If you do not travel at all, this card is not for you, so don’t even think about opening it, you’re not going to reap any benefits of it. If you think that you’re going to take one trip this year, and you’re going to spend about $300 and some travel expenses, you should think about opening this card, but it covers $150 annual fee that you’re going to see on the card, but they will turn it into points.
Since you’ve got triple point earnings on travel or restaurants, you have to spend $5,000 in flights, hotels and restaurants to get that three times bonus. Because 5,000 times three is fifteen thousand which means they are going to give you $150 cash. So we could break it down into points.
Since I’m traveling every week for work, I’m spending about $75,000 on hotels, airfare and car rentals throughout the year, multiply that by three, that’s two hundred twenty five thousand points, that’s how much I’m getting throughout the year.
So if you’re a heavy traveler like I am, this card is perfect for you. You get those points and those points will go a long way when you travel later on, and do not review points for cash. They will go a lot further in booking international flights, and I’m going to get into that shortly.
A couple of other benefits that you get for free are TSA Pre Check or Global Entry, which allows you to bypass any security lines at the airport. TSA pre is for domestic flights, Global Entry allows you to travel internationally through customs without going through that long customs line and filling out forms.
So these are both free, TSA Pre Check is $85, and Global Entry is $100 if you open this card, just make sure that you sign up for either one of those, it’s credited back to your statement automatically.
Another benefit of this card is the priority pest, which is a $400 value. If you’re a frequent traveler, you can go into different lounges that are usually in the international terminals. For instance, in Chicago O’Hare, there’s one in the international terminal five when I travel internationally, I can go there to get free appetizers, free food, free booze, stuff like that.
And you can also bring guests and they can also get free food and free access. We have three destinations of weddings coming up this year, we’re traveling to Southeast Asia for three weeks at the end of the year so this is going to be perfect, we can be waiting in those lounges. Some of them have showers, and all of them have food and beverages which is going to be perfect.
Let’s talk about using the points on this card. When you get that 100-thousand point earning bonus, do not redeem it for $1,000 in cash. The reason why I say that those points will go a lot further in redeeming for international flights than $1,000 cash.
So let’s just take a quick look at the United website, this is what I always do with my points too. Since I have status with United, I know I’m going to be taking my fiancée to the Maldives at some point, so let’s see what the dollars of point values are in terms of redeeming for cash.
So let’s look at Maldives and the cash value. First, the cheapest flight to get to the Maldives costs four thousand dollars, so you need four hundred thousand United points to get four thousand dollars in cash back.
So let’s take a look at a war travel now. If we sell the cash value with four thousand to over four thousand dollars forty two and a half thousand miles to get the Maldives right with ten dollars in taxes, you can clearly see that redeeming for a cash for those Chase Sapphire points that you would make a terrible decision.
Now this isn’t just for the Maldives, this is for a lot of different international countries halfway around the world. So you can see that 42,000 miles here, that would only be the equivalent of four hundred and twenty five dollars in cash from Chase Sapphire.
But now that you’re only using with 42,000 miles to get to the Maldives, you still have another fifty-eight thousand points to use on chats at Chase Sapphire. So you can see that those points go all much longer way than redeeming them for cash.
If you want to travel internationally and see different places in the world, you will use the Chase Sapphire Reserve card. It’s an absolutely great card in my hands, and I’ve over a quarter million Chase Sapphire points right now. That’s good for three international trips to anywhere around the world.
If you have any questions or comments, please let me know. If you want more travel tips, more travel techniques and how to travel on a budget, please subscribe.