chase sapphire reserve travel credit changes

The Chase Sapphire Reserve credit card was introduced by Chase last year, and it was extremely popular. The card was in very high demand that Chase ran out of the metal material used to make the card. It’s easy to see why the Sapphire Reserve is very popular. The card has an annual fee of $450 and at the time came with:

  • 100,000 Ultimate Rewards points after $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months
  • $300 annual travel credit for travel purchases charged to the card
  • $100 statement credit towards Global Entry or TSA PreCheck fee
  • complimentary access to hundreds of VIP lounges through Priority PassTM Select membership.
  • Transfer points at 1:1 ratio
  • 50% bonus when redeeming points through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • 3X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide

Since then we’ve seen the sign up bonus drop in half from 100,000 to 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points. And now another major benefit changes.

chase sapphire reserve travel credit changes

Chase Sapphire Reserve Travel Credit Changes:

A great perk of the $300 travel credit was that you were able to get it twice in your first year of holding the card. That’s because the annual credit was based on the calendar year. So if you opened your card last October for example, you had a chance to earn $300 in credits until December and another $300 from January to October before your second annual fee hits. Since May 21st 2017, Chase has changed the meaning of “annually” when it comes to using the $300 travel credit.
These are the new terms and conditions per Chase:

$300 Annual Travel Credit: A statement credit will automatically be applied to your account when your card is used for purchases in the travel category, up to an annual maximum accumulation of $300. Annual means the year beginning with your account open date through the first statement date after your account open date anniversary, and the 12 monthly billing cycles after that each year. (For applications submitted before May 21, 2017, annual means the year beginning with your account open date through the first December statement date of that same year, and the 12 billing cycles starting after your December statement date through the following December statement date each year.)

Bottom Line:

This change is relatively big for new applicants who are looking to maximize the benefits of the Chase Sapphire Reserve. However, I don’t see it as a big enough change that would deter me from applying for the card. The Reserve is still a great high end card that has many benefits. The $300 annual travel credit still effectively brings down the annual fee to $150 per year. It also has amazing bonus categories that beat other high end credit cards like the Platinum Card from American Express and the Citi Prestige.


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