Best Ever Bonus for Chase Sapphire Preferred

Happy summer and happy non-COVID travel everyone! Over the past 15 months, many of us have been in some sort of lockdown. I was fortunate to be in Taiwan when COVID was running wild around the world. We were free to dine in restaurants, have music festivals, and enjoy the general freedoms of normal life…until now. Over the past month, Taiwan has seen a surge of local cases due to loose quarantine measures, inadequate response to initial outbreaks, and insufficient vaccine supply. Many people that have come to Taiwan to escape the pandemic restrictions are now looking to leave, including me.

It’s a different story on the other side of the world. As the US begins to open up, travel is going to explode this summer. People that have been in lockdown are gearing up to hit the beaches, lake houses, and resorts (hopefully not cruises). While the pandemic is still touch-and-go in parts of the world, there are plenty of options for American travelers, domestic and abroad. For all fully-vaccinated people, all domestic travel is available. Non-vaccinated people should probably get vaccinated (not medical advice). If traveling abroad, please research travel restrictions including testing and quarantine requirements.

100K Bonus for Sapphire Preferred

In my opinion, the best way to travel is free. Now unless your parents are still footing the bill for that trip to Disneyland (or you’ve become a Dogecoin billionaire), travel hacking is the path to cheap and free travel. If you’re new to the environment or just want a [big] boost in your point balance, this credit card is the gold standard. It’s been around forever and offers some of the best and most reliable rewards.

Chase is offering a brand spanking new bonus for their Sapphire Preferred card. It also happens to be the biggest bonus ever. I recently jumped on the 80K bonus thinking it would be as good as it gets. But lo and behold a 100K bonus. Here are the basics for this card:

  • 80K Chase Ultimate Rewards points after $4000 spend in the first three months
  • $95 annual fee (not waived for first year)
  • 2x points on travel and dining (including Uber, Lyft, and delivery services)
  • Transferable points to programs such as United, Singapore Air, Southwest, Marriott and Hyatt
  • Extra 25% value using points through the Chase travel portal or get 1.25 cents/per point using Chase’s Pay Yourself Back program
  • One year of free DoorDash deliveries over $12 with DoorDash Dashpass
  • $60 credit for eligible Peloton memberships

This is on top of premium card coverages such as Primary Rental Collision Coverage, Baggage and Trip Delay, and Purchase Protection.

Chase is historically fickle about their credit card application requirements. To be eligible for the bonus, you must satisfy their 5/24 rule, can’t have another Sapphire card (many of you might have the Sapphire Reserve), or have received a Sapphire bonus in the last 48 months. You can usually call Chase and confirm if you are eligible.

I hope that people have been stocking up on points during the pandemic as I have. In early 2020, I used two credit card bonuses to get Southwest Companion Pass. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to use it because I’ve been outside of the US this whole time. Earlier this year, I reapplied for the Sapphire Preferred for the 80K bonus. I originally applied for it in 2011 and canceled it in 2017 making me eligible for another bonus.

Using Chase Ultimate Rewards

So how am I going to use these points? My partner and I are planning a trip to the US this summer. Our plan is open ended so we’re getting one-way flights from Taipei to Los Angeles. This flight is the cheapest non-stop option for midweek early August.

I know that United MileagePlus has some of the best award availability across all of their Star Alliance partners, including EVA. It’s also super easy to book. I found the same flight on their website for 38.5K points. They are also one of the only airlines that doesn’t add fuel charges to any award flights so it will only cost me $35 per ticket for taxes and fees. My 80K bonus from the Sapphire Preferred card covers both tickets. All I would have to do is transfer the points to my MileagePlus account. The transfer is usually immediate but can take up to 24 to 48 hours. You can normally call United to put a hold on the award so you don’t lose out.

As you can see below, there’s plenty of availability all month.

Now, you might ask how I plan on coming back now that I’ve used most of my points. The Chase Sapphire cards act as a hub for all Chase points. I’ve accumulated various points and bonuses on my Chase Freedom Unlimited card (1.5x points on all purchases). These points are typically only for cash back, but you can use them as a ‘Sapphire’ point (i.e. transfer them to United) if you have a Sapphire card. I also have points from a Chase business card which can be used the same way.

MATH!!

Let’s do a quick calculation on the savings just for the one-way tickets:

Paying cash
$1005 x 2 = $2010

Using points
38.5K x 2 = 77K points
$35 x 2 = $70

Point value
$2010 – 70 = $1940
$1940 / 77K = 2.52 cents per point

The Points Guy values Chase Ultimate Rewards at 2.0 cents. The extra value comes from the ability to transfer to multiple partners to redeem for premium cabins and hotel suites.

While in the US, I will undoubtedly use the Southwest Companion Pass for 2 for 1 flights anywhere Southwest flies, including Puerto Rico for my friends’ wedding this fall. Hope you can take advantage of this amazing offer by Chase. Happy traveling!