The Chase Sapphire Preferred card has established itself as one of the perennial favorites among travel-rewards aficionados for a number of good reasons. Among them:
- No foreign transaction fees
- Points transfer 1:1 to 11 airline and hotel programs
- Awards two points per $1 for travel and dining spend
- Generous sign-up bonuses (currently 40,000 points after spending $3,000)
- Seven percent annual bonus on earned points
Effective immediately, that seven percent annual bonus has been discontinued for new card accounts. Cardholders who received their cards prior to July 20 will continue to receive the bonus through 2015.
Offsetting that perk’s cancellation at least somewhat, the card now features primary collision damage waiver coverage on rental cars charged to the card (it was previously secondary coverage), and increased trip cancellation/interruption coverage, up from $5,000 to $10,000.
So, a downgrade and an upgrade. Whether the net effect of the changes is a wash, a slight improvement, or a slight devaluation will depend on the user’s travel and purchasing patterns. It could go either way.
Bottom line: Although the perks have changed slightly, the Sapphire Preferred card remains among the best credit cards for mile-collectors.
Reader Reality Check
How do the changes to the Sapphire Preferred card affect you?
This article originally appeared on FrequentFlier.com.