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Some of the best travel credit cards are the Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card and the Chase Sapphire Cards (the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve®). These cards are on the shortlist for most travel buffs for the valuable point redemption options. As you’ll notice in this Wells Fargo Autograph vs Chase Sapphire comparison, each credit card caters to a different travel style. Keep reading to find the best option that works for you.

Munich Germany to Toronto Canada Lufthansa A350 Business Class June 29, 2023. Credit: Johnny Jet

Wells Fargo Autograph vs Chase Sapphire Cards

One reason why these cards are geared towards different lifestyles is that there are two different versions of the Chase Sapphire. A second reason is that the Wells Fargo Autograph doesn’t have an annual fee, but the Chase Sapphire cards do.

We will compare the benefits of the Wells Fargo Autograph, Chase Sapphire Preferred, and Chase Sapphire Reserve.

Better Signup Bonus Sapphire or Autograph?

Below are the signup bonuses for each card as well as their travel award value.

  • Wells Fargo Autograph: New Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card cardholders can earn 20,000 bonus points when they spend $1,000 in purchases in the first 3 months – that’s a $200 cash redemption value.
  • (Learn more: Rewards Credit Cards)
  • Chase 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.
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve: New Chase Sapphire Reserve® cardholders can earn 60,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That’s $900 toward travel when redeemed through Chase Travel.

Both Wells Fargo points and Chase Ultimate Rewards points are worth 1 cent each when redeemed for cash or gift card rewards. Your points are worth more when redeemed for travel. In particular, for award flights.

Winner: Chase Sapphire Cards

Purchase Rewards

  • Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card: Earn up to 3x points per $1 on select purchases
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred: Earn up to 5x points per $1 on select purchases
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve: Earn up to 10x points per $1 on select purchases

All three cards earn bonus points on travel purchases. It’s also possible to earn bonus points on non-travel spending. In regards to earning points, the Wells Fargo Autograph has the most bonus categories.

Wells Fargo Autograph Card

Earn unlimited 3x Wells Fargo Go Far Rewards points per $1 on these purchases:

  • Restaurants
  • Gas stations
  • Transit
  • Travel
  • Popular streaming services
  • Phone plans

All non-bonus purchases earn 1x point per $1 spent.

Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card (Learn more: Rewards Credit Cards)

Chase Sapphire Preferred

The Chase 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 

There is a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit. It comes in the form of a statement credit that will automatically be applied to your account when your card is used for hotel accommodation purchases made through the Ultimate Rewards program, up to an annual maximum accumulation of $50.

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

Chase Sapphire Reserve

Chase Sapphire Reserve® purchases earn up to 10x Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Cardholders can earn unlimited: 

  • 10x total points on hotels and car rental purchases through Chase Travel℠ (after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually)
  • 10x total points on Chase Dining purchases with Ultimate Rewards
  • 5x total points on flights when you purchase travel through Chase Travel℠ (after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually)
  • 3x points on other travel worldwide (after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually)
  • 3x points on other dining at restaurants, including eligible delivery services, takeout, and dining out
  • 1x points for all remaining purchases

You will not receive rewards points on your first $300 in annual travel purchases as the annual travel statement credit reimburses these purchases.

Non-bonus purchases earn 1x point per $1 spent with the Chase Sapphire Reserve.

Winner: TIE

Redeeming Points

Your points are worth 1 cent each for cash and gift card rewards on all three cards. Below are the most valuable redemption options for each card.

  • Wells Fargo Autograph Card: Points are worth 1 cent each
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred: Points worth 1.25 cents for award travel on Chase and 1:1 point transfers
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve: Points worth 1.5 cents for award travel on Chase and 1:1 point transfers

Wells Fargo Autograph Card

Redeem your rewards points for travel, gift cards, or statement credits. Or shop at millions of online stores and redeem your rewards when you check out with PayPal. Your points are only worth 1 cent each when other travel rewards, cash, and gift cards.

However, note that the Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card doesn’t have any airline or hotel transfer partners. You will also need a minimum $25 rewards balance to redeem for gift cards or online cash rewards.

Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card (Learn more: Rewards Credit Cards)

Chase Sapphire Preferred

With the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, each Ultimate Rewards point is worth 1.25 cents for any award travel booked through Chase Travel℠. This portal is powered by Expedia, so the 25% travel redemption bonus applies to flights, hotels, rental cars, cruises, and tours.

A better redemption option can be transferring your points to the Chase Ultimate Rewards transfer partners like Southwest Airlines, United Airlines, British Airways, Air France FlyingBlue, and World of Hyatt. You can transfer your points in 1,000-point increments. Most transfers are instant. Your points can easily be worth between 2 cents and 6 cents each, depending on which airline you transfer your points to.

One of your best options can be Singapore Airlines. You can your KrisFlyer miles for a Singapore Suites cabin for one of the best first-class award experiences. Or you can book a partner flight on Alaska Airlines for 15,000 miles plus fees round-trip in the main cabin.

Chase Sapphire Reserve

With the Chase Sapphire Reserve®, your points are worth 1.5 cents each when booking award travel on the Chase travel portal. You can also transfer to the Chase Ultimate Rewards airline and hotel transfer partners.

Like the Sapphire Preferred, your points are worth 1 cent each for cash and gift cards. Your points are only worth 0.8 cents each when redeeming for Amazon.com points or Apple store credit.

Winner: Chase Sapphire Reserve®

fargo propel vs chase sapphire
Use this Wells Fargo Autograph vs Chase Sapphire review to help you decide which card will most help you see the world. On a flight to Dublin, Ireland.

Wells Fargo Autograph vs Chase Sapphire Cards: Additional Benefits

Each card offers a few different travel and purchase protection benefits. Because it’s one of the best premium credit cards, the Chase Sapphire Reserve has the most benefits.

  • Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card: Cell phone protection of up to $600 per claim
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred: Trip cancellation/interruption coverage, primary car rental insurance
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve: $300 travel credit, Priority Pass lounge access, Global Entry or TSA PreCheck

Chase Sapphire Reserve

The Sapphire Reserve takes the prize for the best additional perks. The following Chase Sapphire Reserve benefits will be most valuable if you are a frequent flyer:

  • Annual $300 travel credit
  • Priority Pass airport lounge access
  • Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee credit
  • Luxury Hotel and Resort Collection special benefits
  • Trip cancellation and interruption insurance ($10,000 per person/$20,000 per person)
  • Primary rental car collision and damage waiver coverage
  • Trip delay reimbursement of up to $500 per ticket
  • Lost luggage reimbursement of up to $3,000 per ticket

Additionally, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is also one of the best credit cards for travel miles, thanks to all of the flight perks cardholders can enjoy.

Chase Sapphire Preferred

The Chase Sapphire Preferred benefits include many of the same trip protection benefits as the Sapphire Reserve. However, the coverage amounts are usually less, and you won’t get other premium benefits like an annual travel credit, lounge access, or free Global Entry.

Still, this card has some of the best trip protection benefits with a reasonable $95 annual fee, compared to the Reserve’s $550 annual fee. Though, the Reserve’s annual fee is justified if you use the benefits.

Check out our post on the Chase Sapphire Reserve vs Chase Sapphire Preferred to take a deeper dive.

Wells Fargo Autograph Card

Additional benefits are the Wells Fargo Autograph’s weakness. Usually, the higher the annual fee, the more benefits you get. Still, the Autograph Card offers standard trip protection benefits like secondary rental car insurance, trip cancellation coverage, and baggage delay reimbursement.

If you pay your monthly cell phone bill with your Autograph Card, you can g et up to $600 of cell phone protection against damage or theft when you pay your monthly cell phone bill with your eligible Wells Fargo card (subject to a $25 deductible).

Winner: Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Annual Fee

None of these three cards charge a foreign transaction fee. Because the Chase Sapphire cards have an annual fee, you will need to decide if the redemption options and additional travel benefits are worth the fee.

If you are curious about other cards that don’t have an annual fee, check out our post on some of the best no-annual-fee travel credit cards.

Credit Score Needed

For the Chase Sapphire Reserve, you will need to have excellent credit. For the other two cards, you should try once your credit score is above 740.

When the Wells Fargo Autograph is Best

  • Want to earn bonus points on lifestyle purchases like streaming services
  • Don’t need airline or hotel point transfers
  • Don’t want to pay an annual fee

Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card (Learn more: Rewards Credit Cards)

When the Chase Sapphire Preferred is Best

  • Want a 25% travel redemption bonus through Chase Travel℠
  • 1:1 airline and hotel point transfers
  • Some of the best credit card travel protection benefits
  • Don’t need premium flight benefits like airport lounge access or Global Entry/TSA PreCheck fee credit

Further reading: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

When the Chase Sapphire Reserve is Best

  • Are a frequent flyer and can maximize the Priority Pass and airport security access perks
  • Want a 50% travel redemption bonus on award travel booked through Chase
  • 1:1 airline and hotel point transfers
  • Have excellent credit

50% Award Travel Redemption Bonus: Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Check out our guide to Chase Sapphire Reserve and Preferred application rules if you want more info on the Chase cards.

Considerations for All Three Cards

All three credit cards are some of the best credit cards for online shopping. They are also some of the best travel credit cards available. But the best one for you depends on your spending habits and your travel goals.

The three choices in this Wells Fargo Autograph vs Chase Sapphire review are all good options to consider. And if you’re interested in aesthetics, all three cards are some of the best metal credit cards you can have in your wallet.

Summary

In conclusion, the Wells Fargo Autograph, Chase Sapphire Preferred, and Chase Sapphire Reserve are some of the best travel credit cards you can own. Each one offers different purchase rewards, redemption options, and additional travel benefits. Casual travelers may benefit from the Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card the most because there is no annual fee. But if you travel several times a year (or plan to), either the Sapphire Preferred or Sapphire Reserve is a good fit.

FAQs

How good is the Wells Fargo Autograph Card?

The Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card is one of the best travel rewards credit cards with no annual fee. You earn 3x points per $1 on lifestyle purchases including travel, dining, gas stations, transit, rideshare, and popular streaming services.

Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card (Lear    Preferred points worth?

Your Chase Sapphire Preferred Ultimate Rewards points are worth 1.25 cents when booking any award travel through Chase Travel℠.

Each point can be worth more than 1.25 cents each if you transfer them to an airline or hotel transfer partner like United Airlines, Southwest Airlines, British Airways, or World of Hyatt. However, your points can also be worth less than 0.8 cents depending on the cash value of your travel booking.

You can also redeem your points for cash and gift card rewards at 1 cent each. But, Amazon.com points and Apple store credits have the lowest redemption option at 0.8 cents each. Instead, make a purchase with your Sapphire Preferred and redeem your points as a cash statement credit if you prefer cash rewards.

How much are Chase Sapphire Reserve points worth?

Each Ultimate Rewards point is worth 1.5 cents each when booking award travel on the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal using your Chase Sapphire Reserve®. You can also transfer your points at a 1:1 ratio to airline and hotel loyalty programs where they can be worth more than 1.5 cents each.

Each point is worth 1 cent when redeemed for cash rewards or gift cards. However, the worst redemption option is for Amazon.com points or Apple store credit as they are only worth 0.8 cents each.

Additionally, you can compare the Chase Sapphire Reserve vs Chase Sapphire Preferred if you’re still on the fence.

2 Comments On "Wells Fargo Autograph vs Chase Sapphire Cards: Which Has Better Travel Rewards?"
  1. BW|

    Wells Fargo Propel does not offer a 1.5x redemption offer on flights. You used to be able to pool your rewards with the Visa Signature card to do what you described, but Wells Fargo eliminated point pooling last July.

    1. Johnny Jet Editorial|

      Hi, BW. You are correct. I have updated the post accordingly. Thank you for your comment and for being a reader.

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