Sergei Review Of Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card
Today we are going to review the Chase Sapphire Preferred Visa Credit Card. This is a great card for anyone who dines out a lot, travels frequently, has a good credit score and was not a previous Chase Card member. But first, I want to take you down memory lane for a bit.
There was once a time where your word was your bond. If you didn’t have the money to pay for a product, you could negotiate with the owner of a store for the extension of credit. Their way of vetting you was essentially to know you. They would know where you lived, where you worked and even what kind of work ethic that you had. Merchants would use this information to determine if they could risk extending you a line of credit. Basically this way the old school way of finding out if you were a deadbeat.
While there have been variations of the credit card over the years, such as the Diners Club Card, it was a private bank in Brooklyn, New York that created the first credit card. Called Charge-It, this card was available to people who banked at the Biggins’ Bank. This is not to be confused with Jason Biggins from the American Pie movies that I love so much.
So back to the story, Biggins Bank made arrangements with local merchants to be billed directly when their customers used their charge card and their accounts would be debited the amount of the charge if they couldn’t pay the bill.
Today, however, there are quite a variety of credit cards from which to choose. There are credit cards for people with almost any kind of credit score, so even if you have terrible credit, there are some options out there that will help you build your credit score back up.
There are, however, some credit cards that are strictly for those of you who have excellent credit like Sergei. This is the group of people that can qualify for the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, which is the card that we are going to talk about today.
As the name suggests, the Sapphire Preferred Card is offered by Chase Bank. Chase is a part of the J.P. Morgan company, which is one of the oldest lending institutions in the U.S. Chase offers banking, private banking, lending services and, of course, credit cards to their customers. You don’t have to be a Chase Bank customer in order to qualify for a Chase credit card.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is a Visa card. You can use this card anywhere in the world where Visa is accepted. It can also be used at ATMs for cash back, just remember that there are a number of fees involved with this, which we will discuss later.
This card relies heavily on its rewards program to attract customers. When you use your card at restaurants or for travel, you will receive two points for every dollar you spend on your purchase. For any other kind of purchase you will receive one point for each dollar that you spend.
What’s particularly nice about the rewards program is that there is no limit to how many points that you can earn. Another thing that sets this rewards program apart from other credit cards is that the points never expire. Most credit card companies put a five year limit for the use of your points, if you don’t use them in that time span you lose them; not so with the Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card.
Chase also offers an Ultimate Rewards program. This program allows you to spend your points on virtually anything that you can imagine from TVs to hotel stays and anything in between. When you use your points to book your travel through the Ultimate Rewards website, you will receive 20% off of your out of pocket costs for your travel as well. This is providing that you use your Sapphire Preferred credit card to pay for your travel expenses, which is actually a requirement if you book through the Ultimate Rewards website.
Another part of the points program is the bonus points that you receive if you spend $3,000 within the first three months after you’ve activated your credit card. Once you’ve spent $3,000, you will receive 40,000 bonus points. According to Chase, this is the equivalent of $500, which can be used towards a travel purchase.
When you choose to book travel, you’ll be pleased to learn that there are no blackout dates for your travel. This applies to airfare as well as hotel accommodations. There are, however, limitations when it comes to who you can book with. For example, the airlines through which you can book are currently restricted to Southwest, Continental/United and British Airways. The only hotel on their list is the Marriott.
If you book your travel through the Ultimate Rewards website, you will also earn an additional bonus point for every dollar you spend. That means instead of two points per dollar you will earn three points for each dollar that you spend.
The last part of the rewards program is what is called the points dividend program. Basically, your points grow 7 percent per year, even for the points that you’ve already redeemed. What this means is if you earn 10,000 points, at the end of the year you will claim an additional 700 points.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card isn’t without its costs, however. To begin, there’s an annual fee. The fee is $95 a year, although at the time of this broadcast the fee is being waived by Chase for the first year.
The APR for the Chase Sapphire is 15.24 percent. This is a variable APR based on the Prime Rate. For those of you who don’t know what the Prime Rate is, this is the base rate that is recommended for any loans as suggested by the Board of Directors of the Federal Reserve. The current Prime Rate is 3.25 percent and hasn’t changed at all in the past couple of years.
Most banks charge an interest rate of Prime plus their own rate. If the prime rate changes up or down, their interest rates vary with those changes. If you’re interested in seeing the Prime Rate, you can visit the Wall Street Journal website and see it posted there. The Prime Rate is a suggested number and no lender is required to use it when lending money.
As mentioned earlier, there are fees when you use an ATM. The fee is called a cash advance fee, of which there are two charges. The first charge is the basic charge, which in this case is $10 or 5 percent of the total transaction, whichever amount is larger. The second part of the fee is the APR, which is 19.24 percent for a cash advance.
There is also a penalty APR for people who miss a single payment. This APR is 29.99 percent and applies from the point of the missed payment forward. This is one of the downsides to this card as the penalty rate applies the moment you have missed not only the date the payment is due, but the time that it’s due as well. Often, this means the end of the business day rather than before the end of the actual day — in other words 5:00 PM vs. midnight.
As with most credit cards, if you are late on a payment, then you’ll have to pay penalty fees. These fees include a $15 to $35 fee for a late payment and a $35 fee for a returned payment. The reason that there are variances on the late payment fees is that the credit card laws require banks to base their fees on the credit card balance. If you have a balance less than $100, for example, then your fee will be $15, over $250 and the fee will be $35.
One fee that you won’t see is a foreign transaction fee. That makes this card an excellent choice for those of you who like to travel abroad.
Other Perks for the Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card
There are a number of perks that you don’t want to overlook if you’re considering this credit card. Many of these benefits are great for travelers, again making this a good choice for people who spend a lot of time traveling.
When you use this card for your travel purchase, you will automatically be covered with trip cancellation insurance, travel accident insurance, travel emergency services, lost luggage reimbursement, trip delay coverage and baggage delay coverage. If you use your card to rent a car, you will be provided with roadside assistance and auto rental collision coverage.
You will also find that there is price protection for products that you purchase with the Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card. If you find a cheaper price for an item that you purchased within 90 days of your purchase, you will receive a credit to your credit card for the difference.
It’s important that you read your guide to benefits before you depend on this card for all of your travel coverage. There are usually a lot of restrictions and in many cases you’ll have to pay for something out of pocket and then request reimbursement, which can take time.
Overall, this credit card offers a lot of great features. If, however, you don’t travel, you don’t eat out a lot or you don’t have a credit score over 740, then this credit card may not be the right choice.
In addition, if you have any other credit cards with Chase, according to the terms and conditions of this credit card, you will not qualify for the bonus points. This offer is only for brand new account holders who don’t currently or who have never in the past had an account with Chase.
So if you want to apply for this card, simply look for the listing on this page on the right side.