Chase Ink Preferred Card
80,000 Ultimate Rewards points
$5,000 initial spend
($1,225 net value, .25/$)Signup Bonus Chart
3x Travel (≈5.1%)
3x Most Online Advertising (≈5.1%)
3x Shipping (≈5.1%)
3x Telecommunications Services (≈5.1%)
1x Everything Else (≈1.7%)
No Foreign Transaction Fee
If you advertise online, or ship products for your small business, the Ink Preferred card is indispensable, earning the highest possible reward rates in those categories. Even if you don't it is worthwhile getting this card (if you can) for its extremely lucrative signup offer.
Introduction to Ultimate Rewards
Ultimate Rewards is the name of Chase's own rewards program. Ultimate Rewards Guide
- Ultimate Rewards points can be transferred to many different frequent flyer and hotel loyalty programs. his gives you the flexibility to take advantage of award space on over a hundred different airlines. In many cases, you can choose to book a flight through one of several different partner programs, allowing you to take advantage of whichever program requires the fewest miles and fees for your trip.
- Unlike the other "transferable" point programs, you can redeem your Ultimate Rewards Points for good value, without needing to hassle with frequent flyer tickets. Ultimate Rewards points can be converted into Hyatt hotel points, which can easily be used for award nights at point values typically over 1.7 cents each. If you have the Sapphire Reserve Card, you can "cash out" your points at 1.5 cents per point. And you can get similar value using your points to purchase Southwest Airline tickets.
- We value Ultimate Reward points at 1.7 cents each. Because you can take advantage of award space and "sweet spots" from many different frequent flyer programs, Ultimate Reward points are worth more than any single type of airline miles. If you highly valuable premium-cabin award tickets, Ultimate Reward points are worth even more. If you want to avoid the hassles associated with frequent flyer tickets, they are worth a little less. How Much are Points Worth?
- The Ink Preferred Card (or Sapphire cards) makes the Ultimate Rewards points you earn from other cards more valuable. Only these annual-fee-based cardholders can transfer their Ultimate Rewards points to Hyatt or airline partners. In addition, Sapphire Reserve cardholders can "cash out" their points at 1.5 cents each and Ink Preferred and Sapphire Preferred cardholders can cash them out at 1.25 cent each, rather than than at the base rate of 1 cent per point.
While you can still typically get the most value for your points through good-value frequent flyer tickets, you can easily get good value, with much less effort, through these other types of redemptions. And you can sometimes get as much as 3 cents in value on better-than-normal Hyatt redemptions.
Even if you use them like cash, the reward rate on any purchase with the Chase Reserve / Chase Unlimited combo is 2.25 cents per dollar, the reward rate on travel and restaurant purchases with the Sapphire Reserve is 4.5 cents per dollar, and the signup bonus for the Sapphire Cards is worth $750.
For example, you can transfer the points earned from your Freedom Unlimited, Ink Unlimited, Freedom Flex, or Ink Cash card to your Ink Preferred account, and then cash them out for 1.25 cents each, transfer them to Hyatt for a free hotel night, or transfer them to an airline program to use for frequent flyer tickets. Otherwise, these points are only worth 1 cent each.
Collecting the Signup Bonus
- It is worth signing up for this card just to collect the signup bonus. The typical signup bonus is 80,000 Ultimate Rewards points, valued at $1360 (at 1.7 cents per point).
- You might be able to get a 100,000 signup offer, by applying through a "Business Relationship Manager. These in-branch specialists sometimes have access to better bonus offers. Our net value for this offer would be close to $1,560!
- It is difficult to collect the signup bonus a 2nd time, because of the Chase 5/24 rule. Normally, you are eligible for a Chase signup bonus, if you haven't already earned the bonus from the same card during the last two years. However, due to the Chase 5/24 rule, if you've been signing up for other cards, you won't be able to get approved when you reapply. You'll need get under the 5/24 limit before you can earn the bonus again. Dealing with the Chase 5/24 Rule.
- You can earn signup bonuses from multiple different Chase Ultimate Rewards cards. You are limited to only one version of the Sapphire card (every 48 months), but there is also the Ink Cash, Ink Unlimited, Freedom, and Freedom Unlimited cards.
After subtracting the annual fee and the opportunity cost of using the card for $5,000 of spending, the calculated net value for the initial year is $1225 (25 cents per dollar spent). This is one of the most valuable signup offers of any card. Your value may be higher or lower, depending on how much you value Ultimate Rewards points. Introduction to 'Transferable' Reward Points.
- Free cell phone protection. If you use the card to pay for your cell phone bill, you'll get free cell phone protection for an unlimited number of lines on your account (but only for employee accounts). This includes coverage for damage or theft, but not for lost phones. There is a $100 deductible and benefits are capped at $600 per incident and three incidents per year. Get Free Cell Protection from these Credit Cards.
- "Primary" rental car insurance. If you use this card to pay for your rental car, you'll get primary rental car insurance. Unlike the "secondary" insurance you get from most other cards, if you damage your rental car, you don't need to involve your personal auto insurance company. Credit Cards That Provide “Primary” Rental Car Coverage.
- Access to the Visa Signature Luxury Hotel Collection. As with all Visa Signature cards, you'll get access to Visa's luxury hotel program. Whenever you book one of the 900+ participating hotels, you'll receive a set of valuable benefits, including free breakfast, late check-out, and a $25 food and beverage credit. The Visa program has slightly weaker benefits than the other luxury hotel programs, but includes a larger number of more affordable hotel options and a best price guarantee. Take Advantage of Luxury Hotel Programs for Valuable Extra Perks.
- Access to Visa Signature Offers. Your card entitles you to a set of special offers available from Visa.
- The Ink Preferred earns the highest possible rewards on your advertising and shipping purchases. You'll earn 3x Ultimate Rewards points, valued at 5.1 cents per dollar. This is higher reward rate than you can get from any other card, although some people might prefer to earn a different type of reward currency. .
- This card can be the best card for paying your cell phone bill. You'll earn 3x Ultimate Rewards points, valued at 5.1 cents per dollar, and get automatic cell phone protection. But you'll only receive coverage for additional lines if they belong to employees, not family members'. Get Free Cell Protection from these Credit Cards.
- The Ink Cash card is a better option for other telecommunication purchases. It earns 5x Ultimate Rewards points, rather than 3x points. However, since it can sometimes be hard to get both cards, your advertising and shipping purchases will determine which version makes the most sense for you. Other credit card options top out at 5% back.
- This card earns the highest rewards of any card for travel purchases (other than airfare). You'll earn 3x Ultimate Rewards points, valued at 5.1 cents per dollar. This is better than you can earn with any other card. You can get the same reward rate with the Sapphire Reserve card. Best Credit Cards for Travel Spending.
- Bonus rewards are capped to the first $150,000 worth of bonus category purchases every year.
- You don't want to use this card for your everyday spending. You'll earn higher rewards from a good general-purpose reward card. Get a Great General Purpose Reward Card and Use It for All of Your Spending.
Getting Rid of the Card
- You need to be careful or you could lose your Ultimate Rewards points when you cancel your card. Before you close your card, you need to transfer your points to another card that earns Ultimate Rewards points. You could also transfer them to the Ultimate Rewards account of another person in your household. If you can't transfer your points, you can downgrade the card instead of cancelling it, or transfer your points to your favorite travel partner.
- We recommend downgrading your Ink Preferred Card rather than cancelling it. Chase's 5/24 rule can make it difficult to get a new Chase card when you want to. Keeping your card preserves the option of getting a new card through a product change, rather than a new application. You can product change between any of the Ink cards.
- However, if you are aggressively collecting Chase signup bonuses, you'll want to cancel extra Ink cards to lower your overall Chase credit limit and number of cards.
- You can wait to cancel your card until after the annual fee shows up on your statement. As long as you cancel within 30 days of the statement closing date, Chase will refund the fee. After 30 days, you can receive a pro-rated refund by downgrading to a lower-priced card, such as the Ink Cash or Ink Unlimited cards.
- Chase doesn't make retention offers. Unless something has changed, you don't need to bother checking.
Note that without a Sapphire Reserve, Sapphire Preferred, or Ink Preferred Card, you can't transfer your points to travel partners (or redeem them at more than 1 cent each). The points will stay in your account, you can redeem them for 1 cent each, or you can get one of these cards in the future to regain the ability to transfer them to partners.
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