Is The Worth It? – Forbes Advisor

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The Chase Sapphire Reserve® is one of the most well-known premium credit cards on the market. Introduced in 2016, it made a big splash with a hefty welcome offer and generous travel perks. The welcome bonus has dropped since its introduction, but the card continues to offer value for the right consumer.

Currently, the card offers 60,000 bonus points after spending $ 4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. Paired with a suite of travel and dining benefits, it can be an appealing asset to your credit card portfolio. However, the $ 550 annual fee is steep and can be hard to justify for some consumers.

Here’s a closer look at the Chase Sapphire Reserve® and who might benefit from this card.

Pros and Cons of the Chase Sapphire Reserve®

If you’re considering getting a Chase Sapphire Reserve®, you should weigh its pros and cons. Here’s a quick glimpse at some of the card’s positive and negative attributes:

Pros of the Chase Sapphire Reserve®

  • A generous welcome bonus
  • The $ 300 annual travel credit is flexible and easy to use
  • Ultimate Reward Points transfer to 14 airline and hotel partners
  • The card earns up to 10 points per dollar spent on selected spending categories
  • Lots of travel benefits that can provide outsized value

Cons of the Chase Sapphire Reserve®

  • High annual fee
  • The 5/24 rule makes some people ineligible
  • Some of the travel perks may overlap with existing benefits from other cards in your wallet

Who Should Get the Sapphire Reserve?

The Chase Sapphire Reserve® can certainly be worth it for the right consumer. If you’re unsure whether it’s a good fit for you, consider what you’ll gain from it that you’re not currently getting from another card. For example, you might get outsized value from the welcome bonus or find the category bonuses appealing.

Let’s dive deeper into the card’s features to see who it makes sense for and if it ultimately should be in your wallet.

Those Who Want a Substantial Welcome Offer

After two years of lockdowns, travel is back and consequently, demand and prices have skyrocketed. Many people are looking for credit card welcome bonuses to help lower their travel expenses this summer (and beyond). If you’re one of these people, then the welcome bonus from the Sapphire Reserve might be worth applying for.

The card offers 60,000 bonus points after spending $ 4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. The bonus is worth 1.5 cents per point when redeemed through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal or via Pay Yourself Back, but you can get well over two cents per point by transferring them to an airline or hotel rewards partner program.

Transfer partners include several loyalty program favorites like World of Hyatt, Southwest Rapid Rewards and United MileagePlus. With 60,000 points, you can book up to five nights at an all-inclusive Hyatt hotel, about $ 840 in Wanna Get Away Fares or a round-trip economy class ticket to Europe on United Airlines during the low season.

Those Who Can Offset the Annual Fee Through Card Benefits

The Sapphire Reserve Card’s $ 550 annual fee is partially offset by an annual $ 300 travel credit in addition to benefits like Global Entry, TSA Precheck or NEXUS application fee credit and Priority Pass Select membership. Cardmembers also get a $ 10 monthly credit to GoPuff and a free DashPass membership. These perks add up to hundreds of dollars in value — but only if you use them.

If you’re regularly checking into Priority Pass lounges or claiming the dining credit, you can save hundreds of dollars at the airport. If you’re currently paying $ 9.99 per month for a DashPass membership, then having that covered as part of the Sapphire Reserve’s annual fee can be an incentive to apply for the card.

Welcome bonuses are rewarding, but the card perks ultimately dictate whether it’s worth keeping past the first year. If you can make these benefits work for you, then the Sapphire Reserve can be a worthy choice.

Those Who Can’t Get These Perks From Another Card

The market is saturated with premium credit cards offering benefits like lounge access, trusted traveler program fee credits and annual travel credits. Some of those cards offer more value for the annual fee than the Sapphire Reserve. For example, the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card offers many of the same travel benefits as the Sapphire Reserve, like lounge access and trusted travel membership reimbursements for a lower annual fee.

The Sapphire Reserve is only worth applying for if you’re not already getting these perks from another credit card. If you already have that card in your wallet, you may not need a Sapphire Reserve beyond the welcome bonus.

But if you don’t currently have a premium credit card in your wallet, then the Sapphire Reserve is an excellent starting point.

Read More: Capital One Venture X Vs. Chase Sapphire Reserve

Those Who Want To Earn Ultimate Rewards at an Elevated Rate

The Sapphire Reserve is an excellent card if you want to earn lots of Chase Ultimate Rewards beyond the welcome bonus. The card offers generous category bonuses on both travel and everyday purchases.

Cardholders earn 10 Ultimate Rewards points on hotels and rental cars booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards (after the first $ 300 spent annually). Flights booked through the portal earn 5 points, which is very competitive. All other travel spending booked through any other means earns 3 points.

Through March 31, 2025, cardholders also earn 5 points for every dollar spent on Lyft rides. This can be incredibly lucrative for frequent travelers who rely on the service to get around different cities.

On the everyday spending front, the Sapphire Reserve earns 10 points on Chase Dining purchases and 3 on all other restaurants, eligible delivery services and takeout.

These bonus categories are incredibly generous and can help you accrue lots of Ultimate Rewards on common spending categories.

Those Who Are Under 5/24

Chase has a rule that could impact your ability to qualify for a Sapphire Reserve. Based on the 5/24 rule, you won’t be eligible for a new Chase card if you’ve opened five or more accounts (at any bank) over the last 24 months.

If you are under 5/24, then this can be an opportunity to add a Chase card to your wallet while you’re still eligible.

Even if you have your eye on a credit card from a different bank, getting a Chase card bonus under your belt while you’re still eligible is a good idea. The Sapphire Reserve’s welcome bonus and card perks make it a contender if you’re in the market for a flexible rewards card.

The Best Chase Credit Cards Of 2022

Find the best Chase credit card for your needs.

Bottom Line

The Chase Sapphire Reserve is worth it if you get more than $ 550 in value out of its various perks. That’s easy to do in the first year when you receive a welcome bonus outweighing the annual fee. But if you plan on keeping the card long-term, you’ll want to ensure that the various benefits don’t overlap with any existing premium credit cards in your wallet and that you’re getting outsized value for paying the annual fee. The card can absolutely be worth it for the right consumer who can maximize its perks and generous category bonuses.

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