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Travel gets expensive when you spend a lot of time on the road, but Chase and American Express offer their support—and some pretty attractive rewards—when you sign up for their travel cards.
Both The Platinum Card® from American Express and Chase Sapphire Reserve will offer low fees, but Amex gives you the lower APR with more benefits spread out over time. If you’re looking to enjoy your benefits sooner rather than later, Chase has an abbreviated introductory rewards program. There are also cheaper annual fees if you plan on adding authorized users to your account.
Taking into account the best introductory offers, we offer a thorough breakdown of what you can expect when considering the Amex Platinum versus Chase Sapphire Reserve.
The Platinum Card® from American Express
Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards(R) points after you spend $6,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.
|Regular APR (%)||20.49% - 27.49% variable|
|Rewards Earning Rate||Earn 5X Membership Rewards(R) Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year. Earn 5X Membership Rewards(R) Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar on all other eligible purchases.|
|Foreign transaction fee (%)||0%|
With The Platinum Card® from American Express, you are rewarded handsomely not only for upgraded travel but also for your everyday necessities, like groceries and gas.
Lucrative welcome offers
Plenty of travel and shopping rewards
Additional travel perks
Restricted financing with Pay-Over-Time option
Expensive annual fee
Limited rewards for non-travel items
Chase Sapphire Reserve
Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
|Regular APR (%)||21.99% - 28.99% variable|
|Rewards Earning Rate||Earn 10x total points on chase Dining purchases with Ultimate Rewards®. Earn 5x total points on flights and 3x on other travel worldwide. Earn 3x points on other dining at restaurants, including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.|
|Balance Transfer Fee||Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.|
|Foreign transaction fee (%)||0%|
With slightly higher membership fees, the Chase Sapphire Reserve entices you with prompt bonus points, annual travel credits, and Lyft points to keep you on the go.
3x the reward points
Lower reward threshold
Additional annual travel credit
Extra grocery credits
Excellent credit score required
Limited rewards categories
Higher starting APR rates
No intro APR
Amex Platinum vs. Chase Sapphire Reserve: Eligibility
To qualify for either of these cards, you will need great credit. Applicants will need either good credit or excellent credit to be approved, although the Amex Platinum is more forgiving than the Chase Sapphire Reserve. Both cards generally require at least a 700 credit score.
However, before you apply for your card, you should be sure that you can qualify. Chase has specific rules about how many applications you can open with the bank over a certain period. This means that if you fail to qualify, your chances of applying for a different card in the future could be affected.
Chase typically does not approve applications for more than two personal credit cards or more than one business card per person per month. Applicants also rarely receive approvals for a new Chase card when there are five or more new credit accounts within the last 24 months.
Amex Platinum vs. Chase Sapphire Reserve: Rewards and Benefits
The Amex Platinum Card is a luxury travel credit card with extra perks to make travel not just more affordable but far more enjoyable, too. After the introductory offer, your regular rewards rate includes 5x the points on eligible air and prepaid hotel purchases up to $500,000, as well as one point for every dollar spent on all other purchases.
There are the usual points for travel, but there are several benefits that come built-in with your card. Travel suddenly becomes a breeze with access to AirSpace and American Express International lounges. You’ll also get a $200 airline fee credit toward participating airlines, plus a $15 monthly Uber credit for rides or Eats orders. There is also a $20 end-of-year Uber bonus you can enjoy with your Saks Fifth Avenue shopping credit.
When it comes time to travel, Chase has you covered there, too. There is travel accident insurance when you use your card to pay for travel, adding up to $1.5 million in accidental death or dismemberment coverage.
|Amex Platinum||Chase Sapphire Reserve|
|Signup bonus||150,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 within the first six months||60,000 bonus points after $4,000 in purchases during the first three months|
|Additional rewards||1x On other purchases||Earn 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 10x total points on Chase dining purchases with Ultimate Rewards®. Earn 5x total points on flights and 3x on other travel worldwide after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on dining at restaurants, including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.|
|Ridesharing rewards||$15 in Uber Cash for rides or eats orders in the U.S. every month plus a bonus of $20 in December, up to $200 annually||10x Lyft points|
|Regular purchase rewards||1x||1x|
|Additional credits||$200 Airline Fee Credit for qualifying airlines Access to AirSpace and American Express International lounges Up to $100 in statement credits for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue or saks.com, up to $50 on a semi-annual basis||N/A|
Amex Platinum vs. Chase Sapphire Reserve: Intro Offer
The Amex Platinum Card starts you off with a bang, offering the chance to earn 150,000 Membership Rewards® points when you spend $6,000 within the first six months.
Chase offers Sapphire customers a 1:1 point transfer, allowing for full value transfer at participating airlines and hotels. Topping Amex’s $200 airline credit, Chase offers 5X to 10X bonus points after spending $300 on air travel annually through Chase Ultimate Rewards, plus cardholders can stay fit for those upcoming trips with up to $120 in membership credit for Peloton. Instead of offering Uber credits, Chase has its partnership with Lyft. Therefore, cardholders receive 10 times the Lyft points. However, you won’t earn quite as many points on your dining and travel purchases, earning just 3x travel and dining points.
Additionally, you can earn up to 60,000 points when you spend $4,000 within the first three months. It’s half the allotted time frame as American Express, but it’s almost as many points for a reasonable spending threshold.
Chase is also unique in its redemption value, offering a 50% bonus to point value when redeemed for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
Amex Platinum vs. Chase Sapphire Reserve: Fees
Amex Platinum charges a $695 annual membership fee, and Chase Sapphire Reserve charges a fee of $550. While more expensive than most cards, it’s about on par with luxury travel cards of this nature. However, there is a big difference in cost for additional users. While Chase only charges $75 for each additional authorized user on your account, you will pay $175 per user with American Express unless you upgrade to the Platinum Gold Card.
The Chase Sapphire Reserve is a full percentage point higher than the Amex Platinum, but Amex skips the balance transfer fee that Chase will charge you, either $5 or 5% of your transaction, whichever is higher.
Other than these areas, fees between the two cards are about the same.
|Fee Description||American Express Platinum||Chase Sapphire Reserve|
|Annual fee||$695; $175 for additional cards with no fee for Platinum Gold||$550; $75 per authorized user|
|APR||20.49% to 27.49%||21.99% to 28.99%|
|Balance transfer fee||N/A||$5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater|
|Cash advance||$10 or 5% of the cash advance amount, whichever is greater||$10 or 5% of the amount of each transaction, whichever is greater|
|Late payment||Up to $40||Up to $40|
|Returned payment||Up to $40||Up to $40|
Amex Platinum vs. Chase Sapphire Reserve: Security
American Express security protocols are extensive and include several measures.
- Global Assist® Hotline: Long-distance travelers can benefit from 24/7 emergency support when traveling more than 100 miles away from home. This includes medical, legal, and passport referrals; emergency cash wires; and missing luggage assistance.
- Shopping protection: Amex offers SafeKey technology to protect you during online shopping. There’s also Purchase Protection, which can help protect against accidental damage, theft, and lost coverage for eligible purchases, as well as Return Protection up to $300 per item.
- Identity and fraud protection: Amex gives cardholders emergency card replacement, usually within 48 hours, if your card is lost or stolen. Plus, enjoy 24/7 fraud alerts so you know immediately if there’s any suspicious activity on your account.
Chase doesn’t offer quite as many safety measures, but it still covers all of the most important bases. The security protections include several points.
- Zero liability protection: With this in place, you’re not responsible for transactions relating to credit card fraud. Just report the fraudulent charge to Chase, and you won’t have to worry about paying for what you didn’t buy.
- Fraud monitoring: Chase employs the latest technologies to constantly monitor your account in real-time. With fraud monitoring, you’ll also get instant fraud alerts via text, email, or phone.
- Chip-enhanced security: Your Chase credit card comes with an extra suit of armor with its chip-enhanced security. The embedded chip allows for greater protection wherever your card is used, so your information isn’t left vulnerable.
Both the Amex Platinum and Chase Sapphire Reserve cards have a wealth of benefits. While Amex Platinum offers lucrative travel rewards, Chase Sapphire Reserve offers more rewards in addition to travel benefits, such as 3x points dining at restaurants, and extra grocery credits. The Chase card also retains a higher star rating than Amex by one full point. Therefore, while both cards are good for the busy traveler, Chase Sapphire Reserve is the best option for those looking to gain rewards on travel and other purchases.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is It Worth Having Amex Platinum and Chase Sapphire Reserve?
Both the Amex Platinum and the Chase Sapphire Reserve deliver attractive travel perks. However, with such a high membership fee, these cards require an upfront investment. Therefore, they are usually best suited for the busy traveler who stays on the move.
Will Amex Platinum or Chase Sapphire Reserve Waive the Annual Fee?
American Express does not typically waive its annual fee, although there may be some incentives that could lower the price you pay for membership. Chase does not usually waive its fees, but military members and veterans may enjoy some military discounts that could waive the annual fee. Otherwise, most members should plan on paying the fee.
Is Amex Platinum Hard to Get?
To get an Amex Platinum Card, you must have good to excellent credit. Generally speaking, American Express tends to prefer a minimum credit score of 700 for the Platinum Card. The better your credit score, the more likely you are to be approved for your new credit card.
What Credit Score Do You Need for Chase Sapphire Reserve?
The Chase Sapphire Reserve typically requires at least a 700 credit score, but you are more likely to be approved when you have excellent credit. Chase also looks to see how many times you have applied for a credit card in the past, so be sure to keep your applications to a minimum if you plan on applying for the Chase Sapphire Reserve.
There is much to consider when shopping for a credit card, so we take a thorough approach when comparing the Amex Platinum versus Chase Sapphire Reserve. Our detailed analysis looks at crucial factors such as pricing and fees while also considering the latest introductory offers and sign-up perks to keep you in the know. When you are on the road, you need to know that you are protected, which is why we consider what security and travel features each provider offers to keep you safe on the many adventures to come. We take the time to absorb the fine print to make the best decision for you and your family when choosing between Amex Platinum and Chase Sapphire Reserve.
To see rates and fees for The Platinum Card® from American Express, please see the rates and fees.