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If you’re considering adding a travel credit card to your wallet, now might be the ideal time. By starting to earn rewards early, you’ll have points or miles at your disposal for trips. The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and the Citi Premier® Card, both highly regarded travel cards, are some of the best.

San Francisco. Credit: Johnny Jet

The information for the Citi Premier® Card has been collected independently by Johnny Jet. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Chase Sapphire Preferred vs Citi Premier Card Review

The Chase Sapphire Preferred perks have easily stood head and shoulders above most personal rewards credit cards in the past. But many cards have been increasing their bonuses and benefits, which makes choosing just a little bit harder. One of those cards that have increased in value recently is the Citi Premier Card.

It’s also helpful to know that both cards are some of the best travel credit cards available.

Sign-Up Bonus

Let’s start with the fun stuff. Here are the current bonus offers available, as well as how you might get more value with each offer.

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

New Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card cardholders can earn 60,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That’s worth $750 when redeemed through Chase Travel℠.

Just be aware of the Chase 5/24 rule. This unwritten rule basically says that Chase will not approve your application if you’ve opened more than 5 cards in the last 24 months.

Citi Premier Card

New Citi Premier® Card cardmembers can earn 60,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after spending $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. This bonus is redeemable for $600 in gift cards or travel rewards when redeemed at thankyou.com. Plus, for a limited time, earn a total of 10 ThankYou® Points per $1 spent on hotel, car rentals, and attractions (excluding air travel) booked on the Citi Travel portal through June 30, 2024.

If this sounds like a good choice for you, check out the CardMatch™ tool, which is a free resource for finding personalized offers that best serve you. It can help you determine if the Citi Premier is a card you can get. Additionally, you may be offered a higher targeted signup bonus that isn’t available to the general public.

Learn More: CardMatch™ 

You will need good to excellent credit for the Citi Premier Card.

Bonus ThankYou Points are not available if you received a new cardmember bonus for the following cards:

  • Citi Rewards+® Card
  • Citi ThankYou® Preferred
  • Citi ThankYou® Premier/Citi Premier® Card
  • Citi Prestige® Card

The bonus also isn’t available if you have closed any of the accounts listed above in the past 24 months.

Verdict

Even though both bonuses are similar regarding spending requirements, I think Chase points are more valuable (more on that later).

Winner: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Perks & Benefits

These two travel cards have a lot of great benefits, which is excellent for us! Both cards earn on travel and on common purchases when staying close to home. Which card best fits your spending needs?

Citi Premier Card

The Citi Premier® Card gives you unlimited 3x points per $1 spent on:

  • Restaurants
  • Supermarkets
  • Gas Stations
  • Air travel
  • Hotels

You’ll earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.

Plus, for a limited time, earn a total of 10 ThankYou® Points per $1 spent on hotel, car rentals, and attractions (excluding air travel) booked on the Citi Travel portal through June 30, 2024.

The card comes with contactless chip-enabled technology and travel protection benefits like lost baggage, car rental insurance, trip accident insurance, and travel emergency assistance. In addition, cardholders can transfer their points to popular airline loyalty programs like TrueBlue, Virgin Atlantic Flying Club, and Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer.

There is no fee to transfer points, but the minimum transfer is 1,000 points.

Hotel Benefit

Cardholders can also get a $100 annual hotel benefit after purchasing a single hotel stay of $500 or more (excluding taxes and fees) through thankyou.com. It can be one of the best hotel credit cards if you can use this flexibility annually.

You can also use your card to Shop with Points at participating online merchants such as Amazon.com and BestBuy.com.

The Citi Premier® Card is also a World Mastercard, which means cardholders are entitled to additional Mastercard benefits.

Chase Sapphire Preferred

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is one of the best Chase credit cards for a reason.

The Sapphire Preferred earns unlimited:

  • 5x points on travel purchased through Chase Travel℠ (excluding hotel purchases that qualify for the $50 Anniversary Hotel Credit)
  • 3x points on dining (including eligible delivery services, takeout, and dining out)
  • 3x points on online grocery purchases (excluding Target®, Walmart®, and wholesale clubs)
  • Also 3x points on select streaming services
  • 2x points on all other travel purchases
  • 1x point per $1 spent on all non-bonus purchases 

It’s also great for international travel since it has chip & signature technology. The Sapphire Preferred is a Visa Signature card, which offers additional benefits like complimentary wine tastings, BOGO movies, and more. It’s also worth noting that the Chase Travel℠ site has a shopping portal that can be very useful in earning multiple dollars for shopping online.

Hotel Benefit

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card also comes with a statement credit that will automatically be applied to your account when your card is used for hotel accommodation purchases made through the Chase Travel℠ program, up to an annual maximum accumulation of $50.

Who’s Better…

Both cards come with lots of benefits to take advantage of. But, depending on your spending and lifestyle, one card might speak to you more.

Winner: TIE

Reward Points System

Chase

The Sapphire Preferred earns points, which are my favorite points to earn. P e r i o d. They are just so darn flexible. You can redeem your points for travel through their website and receive a 25% bonus per redemption with the Sapphire Preferred.

New Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card cardholders can earn 60,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That’s worth $750 when redeemed through Chase Travel℠.

That means that 60,000 points are worth $750 in award travel through the Chase Travel℠ website. You can book any flight, hotel, or car rental available too. If travel isn’t for you at the moment, you can always redeem your UR points for gift cards, merchandise, and statement credits.

The REAL value of Chase points is found in their transfer partners. You can transfer UR points out to top Chase travel partners. They are JetBlue, Iberia, Aer Lingus, Emirates, United, Southwest, British Airways, Virgin Atlantic, Singapore Airlines, Air France/KLM, Aeroplan, Hyatt, Marriott, IHG, and Marriott.

That’s a lot of options! Here are a couple of examples of what you can do with UR points:

  • Fly round-trip to Europe on United in economy class for 60,000 miles (easily worth over $1,100 in value)
  • Transfer 60,000 points to Hyatt and get 2 nights at the Andaz 5th Avenue in NYC

Plus, on each account anniversary, you’ll earn bonus points equal to 10% of your total purchases made the previous year. That means if you spend $25,000 on purchases, you’ll get 2,500 bonus points.

Here’s a guide on how to try for the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

Citi ThankYou Reward

This Chase Sapphire Preferred vs Citi Premier review wouldn’t be complete without comparing rewards systems. Citi ThankYou Points can also be redeemed through their website for travel. You can also redeem your Thank You points for gift cards and merchandise.

However, Citi ThankYou points can also be transferred out to travel partners! Victory. The Citi ThankYou transfer partners include Singapore Airlines, AeroMexico, Asia Miles, Avianca, Emirates, EVA Air, Qantas, JetBlue, Virgin Atlantic, Turkish, Qatar, Etihad, Thai, Intermiles, KLM, and Malaysia.

In my opinion, the best Citi TY transfer partner is Singapore Airlines, which is also a Chase transfer partner. Flying Singapore premium products is a treat, especially their high-end Suites Class. In the past, we’ve flown from Tokyo to LA in Singapore Suites, and it was awesome. The ticket would’ve cost $15,000 out of pocket, but we were able to book it with miles & points.

Here is the credit score you’ll need for the Citi Premier.

Who Wins…

I love that both the Chase program and Thank You programs earn transferable points. Transferable points will give you the most flexibility, thus the opportunity to get the most out of your points. It’s worth mentioning, too, that once you have miles in a certain airline’s loyalty program, you can fly any airline that is a partner with them. Crazy value!

I will have to pick the Sapphire Preferred in this category because the Chase program has better transfer partners.

Winner: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Fees

There’s a $95 annual fee but no foreign transaction fee with the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

The Citi Premier Card also has a $95 annual fee but no foreign transaction fees.

Since both cards have low annual fees (that can be offset if you are able to take advantage of the perks), look at the one whose benefits work out better for you. Additionally, since both cards don’t charge foreign transaction fees, they are both great for international travel.

Conclusion of Chase Sapphire Preferred or Citi Premier Card

Hopefully, this Chase Sapphire Preferred vs Citi Premier review has exemplified just how solid both cards are and why each has its advantages. The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and Citi Premier® Card are both good choices if you want some flexibility while traveling. The Citi Premier Card has better category bonuses, but the Sapphire Preferred has better transfer partners.

Both cards have very competitive sign-up bonuses, but I would rather earn Chase points than Citi ThankYou points at the end of the day.

Eventually, you may want to have both of these travel rewards cards since they complement each other well. And that’s possible since they are issued from different banks. You can’t go wrong with either card, but hopefully, this review helps you decide.

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4 Comments On "Chase Sapphire Preferred vs Citi Premier Card Review"
  1. Anonymous|

    Can you use the Thank You points to book on Lufthansas or United thru any of the transfer partners?

    1. Anonymous|

      Singapore Airlines is in the Star Alliance, but their award chart isn’t the best for partner awards though.

      1. Anonymous|

        Anyway to calculate the fees for partner award tickets on Singapore. I’ve turned up empty handed in my search for this. Their economy prices on partners to Europe are 5k cheaper, but of course I’d be concerned what those fees would look like. Many thanks!

        1. Anonymous|

          Unfortunately, there’s no tool that I know of, so you have to manually search on the SQ website. Hope this helps!

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