Chase Sapphire Reserve® Review: Best for Big-Time Traveler

Chase Sapphire Reserve<sup>®</sup> Review: Best for Big-Time Traveler article image.

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Once the reigning king of travel rewards cards, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® lost some of its appeal when the annual fee increased from $450 to $550. But don't rule it out—this card is still a top pick for frequent travelers.


on Chase's website



21.49% - 28.49% Variable

Intro APR



10x Points on Hotels and Car Rentals Purchased Through Chase

5x Points on Flights Purchased Through Chase

3x Points on Dining

3x Points on Other Travel

1x Points on All Other Purchases

Intro Bonus

Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®

Annual Fee


Card Details
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $900 toward travel.
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select and up to $100 application fee credit every four years for Global Entry, NEXUS, or TSA PreCheck®
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more
Excellent rewards on travel and diningHigh annual fee
A variety of travel-related benefits and statement creditsSome benefits are temporary
Flexible redemption optionsRequires excellent credit
No foreign transaction fees
Chase Customer Service Card Services
800-432-3117P.O. Box 15298
Wilmington, DE 19850

Experian Review

The Chase Sapphire Reserve® is loaded with cardholder perks and offers good rewards on common purchases. It's a valuable addition for households that have other cards in the Chase ecosystem, but it also holds its own as a high-end travel card. The major downside is the high annual fee, but the benefits far outweigh the cost for some people.

Excellent Opportunities to Earn and Redeem Rewards

The Chase Sapphire Reserve® is part of Chase's Ultimate Rewards® program. Using the card, you'll earn Chase Ultimate Rewards® points, which you can then redeem in a variety of ways. Card-issuer rewards programs like this offer greater flexibility than airline, hotel or cash back rewards, and Chase has one of the best.

Earning Points on Purchases

With Chase Sapphire Reserve®, the number of points you earn depends on where you make a purchase:

  • Earn 10 points per dollar on hotels and car rentals and 5 points on flights booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Earn 3 points per dollar on eligible dining and travel purchases
  • Earn 1 point per dollar on every other eligible purchase

Eligible purchases don't include certain types of transactions, such as cash advances, lottery tickets, interest or fees. You also won't earn rewards on your first $300 spent on travel each account cardholder anniversary year since you'll receive a statement credit to offset those purchases.

New Cardholders Can Earn an Intro Bonus

In addition to the points you earn from purchases, you may be eligible for a large intro bonus. To qualify, you can't already have an open Chase Sapphire Reserve® or Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, or have received an intro bonus from a Sapphire card in the past 48 months.

If you meet these criteria, you can earn 60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards® points after using your Chase Sapphire Reserve® to make $4,000 in eligible purchases in your first 3 months with the card. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®

How to Redeem Chase Ultimate Rewards® Points

You can choose how and when you want to redeem your Chase Ultimate Rewards® points—and there's no shortage of options.

You can pick from gift cards, merchandise and cash back. But generally, you'll get the greatest value (meaning, the most "cents per point") if you use your points to book travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® or transfer your points to a partner travel loyalty program.

While you have the Chase Sapphire Reserve® card, each point in your account is worth 1.5 cents when you use them to book travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® portal. By comparison, your points are only worth 1 cent each if you redeem them for cash back.

Transfers occur at a 1-to-1 ratio, so 1 point gives you 1 airline mile or hotel point. Chase partners with many leading hotel and airline programs—and you can redeem your miles or points for flights or hotel stays after the point transfer. Using your points this way sometimes gives you the most value for them.

For example, an international business-class flight might cost $1,500 one way. You could book the flight with 100,000 points through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® portal. But if the same flight only requires 60,000 frequent flyer miles, you could transfer just 60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards® points. By comparing and transferring points, you're able to book the same flight and save 40,000 points and get a value of 2.5 cents per point for the 60,000 points you use.

Complimentary Memberships (Enrollment Required)

Cardholders can get complimentary access to membership programs, which can save you money on travel and dining. Don't forget to sign up for these programs or add your card to your existing account to receive the benefits.

Priority Pass Select

Once you open your account, you can enroll in Priority Pass Select for free. The program will give you and two guests complimentary access to over 1,300 airport lounges worldwide.

Automatic Statement Credits on Eligible Purchases

If you use your card for certain purchases, Chase will automatically apply a statement credit to your account. The statements credits can offset all or part of your purchase:

  • $300 in annual travel credits: Each cardholder anniversary year, your first $300 in travel purchases will be covered by a statement credit.
  • Up to $100 for Global Entry or TSA Precheck: This credit offsets the cost for enrolling in Global Entry ($100) or TSA Precheck ($85), which can make getting through security at the airport easier. You can receive one statement credit once every four years.

Consider these statement credits when you're thinking about whether the card makes sense for you. While the $550 annual fee is one of the highest credit card annual fees around, these credits can offset some of that expense each year.

A Long List of Travel and Purchase Benefits

The Chase Sapphire Reserve® has so many cardholder benefits, it can be hard to keep track of them all. These benefits can help you save money, make your travel more luxurious and offer protections on purchases you were going to make anyway. Many of these apply to you and your travel companions when you use your card to make a purchase.

  • No foreign transaction fees: Don't pay extra on purchases outside the U.S. or on purchases in non-U.S. currency.
  • The Luxury Hotel and Resort CollectionSM: Receive complimentary benefits, such as upgrades and late checkout, when you book select hotels with your card.
  • Trip delay reimbursement: Get reimbursed for necessary expenses when your trip is delayed by over six hours or requires an overnight stay, up to $500 per ticket.
  • Baggage reimbursement: Get up to $100 per day per person for five days to buy necessary expenses like toiletries and clothing if your bags are delayed by over six hours.
  • Cancellation or interruption insurance: If a qualifying incident requires you to cancel or cut your trip short, you could get up to $10,000 per person ($20,000 per trip) for unreimbursed expenses.
  • Emergency medical and dental coverage: When you're over 100 miles from your home, you can get up to $2,500 in eligible medical or dental expenses reimbursed for you or an immediate family member.
  • Roadside assistance: our times a year, receive up to $50 toward roadside assistance services, such as towing or fuel delivery.
  • Exclusive access: Get access or special seats at events and dining experiences around the world.
  • Primary rental car coverage: You'll get primary coverage if your rental car is damaged or stolen. Many cards only offer secondary coverage, which requires you to use your personal insurance policy first.
  • Purchase protection: Get up to $10,000 back per claim ($50,000 maximum per year) when a new item your purchase is lost or damaged within 120 days.
  • Return protection: Get reimbursed up to $500 per item ($1000 maximum per year) if a merchant won't accept a return within 90 days of your purchase.
  • Extended warranty: Receive an additional year of coverage on purchases that have an eligible U.S. manufacturer's warranty of three years or less.

Once you create an online account, you can also download the Chase mobile app for iOS or Android. You can use the app to manage your card and account by reviewing purchases and setting up notifications. You can also review and redeem your rewards from the app, along with managing or making your payments.

Additional Info

Purchase APR: 21.49% - 28.49% VariableGrace period: 21 days
Transfer APR: 21.49% - 28.49% VariableAnnual fee: $550
Cash advance APR: 29.49% VariableBalance transfer fee: 5% ($5 minimum)
Minimum interest charge: NoneCash advance fee: 5% ($10 minimum)
Foreign transaction fee: None
Late payment fee: Up to $40
Returned payment fee: Up to $40

Authorized-User Policy

You can add an authorized user to your Chase Sapphire Reserve® card for $75. As is always the case, the authorized user will receive a card that's tied to your account. They can make purchases, but you'll be responsible for the entire payment.

There's a fee for authorized users because they'll also receive some benefits as a cardholder.

Is This Card Right for You?

The Chase Sapphire Reserve® card is a high-end travel card that can be a good fit if you frequently travel. It's even better if you regularly pay for luxury travel and are willing to learn the ins-and-outs of the Chase Ultimate Rewards® program.

The card may also be used to complement other Chase cards you may already have. If you or someone in your household has another card that gives you Chase Ultimate Rewards® points, you can transfer those points to the Chase Sapphire Reserve® before redeeming them for travel to increase their value.

For example, if a household member has the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, they would get 1.25 cents per point when booking travel, or only 1 cent per point with one of the Chase Freedom cards. After transferring points to your Chase Sapphire Reserve® account, you'll get the 1.5 cents per point value when booking travel.