Having the right travel credit card can unlock a world of benefits, rewards, and savings. Two popular travel rewards credit cards are the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and JetBlue Plus Card.
The Sapphire Preferred is one of the most popular travel rewards cards because it offers nice welcome bonus and extra points on travel and dining, which can be transferred to airline and hotel partners or redeemed directly for travel at a rate of 1.25 cents per point through Chase Ultimate Rewards. The Sapphire Preferred also offers great travel and purchase protections for a card with a $95 annual fee.
On the other hand, the JetBlue Plus is a popular choice for frequent JetBlue flyers with 6x points on JetBlue flights, a free first check bag, 5,000 anniversary points, a 10% points rebate on award flights, and a 50% in-flight savings.
This article will compare each card based on several factors to help you make an informed decision on which card is the best to add to your wallet.
Overviews of Each Card
The Chase Sapphire Preferred currently offers the following welcome bonus:
The JetBlue Plus Card currently offers the following welcome bonus:
Earn 70,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases and paying the annual fee in full, both within the first 90 days, with the JetBlue Plus Card.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred earns Ultimate Rewards points and offers bonus points on spending in several categories:
- 5 points per dollar on travel booked through the Chase travel portal;
- 5 points per dollar on Lyft purchases (through March 2025);
- 5 points per dollar on Peloton equipment and accessory purchases of $250 or more (through March 2025, with a limit of 25,000 bonus points);
- 3 points per dollar on dining, including eligible delivery services, takeout, and dining out;
- 3 points per dollar on online grocery store purchases (excludes Target, Walmart, and wholesale clubs);
- 3 points per dollar on select streaming services, including Netflix, Disney+, Spotify, Youtube TV, Pandora, Apple Music, SiriusXM, Sling, Vudu, Fubo TV, Hulu, and ESPN+;
- 2 points per dollar on all travel not booked through the Chase travel portal; and
- 1 point per dollar on all other eligible spending.
The JetBlue Plus Card earns TrueBlue points at the following rate:
- 6 points per dollar for JetBlue purchases;
- 2 points per dollar at restaurants;
- 2 points per dollar at grocery stores; and
- 1 point per dollar on all other eligible purchases.
Winner: Chase Sapphire Preferred
The Sapphire Preferred offers high earning rates on multiple spending categories, providing cardholders with a faster and more efficient way to rack up points. With bonus points for travel, dining, streaming, and grocery purchases, you can easily accumulate rewards for your everyday expenses and travel expenses alike.
The Sapphire Preferred offers nice benefits, including:
- Receive 25% more value on points redeemed for travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® portal.
- $50 annual credit on hotel stays purchased through Ultimate Rewards.
- 10% Points Bonus for each Cardmember anniversary.
- A complimentary one-year subscription to DashPass by DoorDash when you enroll by December 31, 2024.
- Trip cancellation and interruption insurance (up to $10,000 per person and $20,000 per trip).
- Primary car rental insurance.
- Lost luggage reimbursement (up to $3,000 per passenger)
- Baggage delay insurance (up to $100 per day for five days).
- Trip delay insurance (up to $500 per ticket for a delay longer than 12 hours or overnight).
- Extended warranty.
- 120 days purchase protection (up to $500 per claim and $50,000 per year).
- No foreign transaction fees.
- Free 6-month membership to Instacart+ (activate by July 31, 2024).
The JetBlue Plus Card offers the following benefits for its cardholders:
- Free first-checked bag for you and up to 3 eligible travel companions on JetBlue-operated flights;
- Earn 5,000 bonus points on your account anniversary;
- 10% points rebate when you redeem for travel;
- 50% in-flight savings on JetBlue flights;
- No foreign transaction fees;
- Annual $100 statement credit for JetBlue vacations; and
- Earn points towards Mosaic Elite status.
Winner: Chase Sapphire Preferred
The Sapphire Preferred undoubtedly offers a wide range of benefits that make it a highly valuable card for frequent travelers and everyday spenders alike.
Value of the Annual Fee
The Chase Sapphire Preferred comes with an annual fee of $95.
While some users might be initially deterred by this cost, it’s important to consider the value and benefits that come with the card.
The rewards points, travel benefits, and purchase protections can help offset the cost of the annual fee for frequent travelers.
The JetBlue Plus Card has a $99 annual fee, which you can try to offset with a free first checked bag and 5,000 points each account anniversary.
Winner: It depends how often you fly JetBlue. If you fly JetBlue frequently and check your bags, then the JetBlue is the better option for the free bags.
But if you only fly JetBlue a few times per year, then the Chase Sapphire Preferred is a more versatile option.
The earns Ultimate Rewards points, one of the most flexible points currencies.
You can use your points to book flights, hotel stays, and even rent a car through Chase Travel — all at a fixed rate of 1.25 cents per point. For example, 100,000 points are equivalent to $1,250 towards travel.
You can unlock even more value than 1.25 cents per point by transferring rewards to Chase airline and hotel partners.
Redeeming JetBlue Points
JetBlue’s TrueBlue program is revenue based, which means the number of points required for a flight is linked to the price of the flight. The more expensive the cash flight, the more points are required.
For example, a $200 economy flight should cost about 14,500 points and a $500 Mint business class flight costs about 50,000 points.
Another option is to fly from the West Coast to Hawaii on Hawaiian Airlines Business class starting at 22,000 points in Economy and 45,000 points in Business class.
Winner: Chase Sapphire Preferred
The Ultimate Rewards Points earned on the Sapphire Preferred have higher redemption values when redeemed for travel on the Chase Portal. Plus, they can be transferred to several airline and hotel partners.
While both the Chase Sapphire Preferred and JetBlue Plus Card have their own unique set of benefits and rewards, the Sapphire Preferred stands out as the more versatile and valuable option overall.
The Sapphire Preferred has a wider range of earning categories, flexible redemption options, premium perks, and comprehensive travel insurance.
On the other hand, the JetBlue Plus Card may only be valuable for those who frequently fly with JetBlue and take advantage of the benefits like free checked bags.
Which card are you going to choose?