The Best Hotel Benefits: Sapphire Reserve vs. Ritz Carlton Card

AdSense

The Chase Sapphire Reserve and Ritz Carlton Rewards Credit Card don’t seem like they’re in the same league, but they actually share a great deal in common. Both credit cards are issued by chase, carry a $450 annual fee, offer generous sign-up bonuses, and incredible travel benefits. But which of these cards is the best? Below is a breakdown of how each card ranks in various categories:

 

Sign-up Bonus

Chase Sapphire Reserve: 100,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

The Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card: Three complimentary nights at any participating Tier 1-4 Ritz-Carlton hotel, after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after account opening.

The best sign-up bonus really comes down to what it is you’re redeeming it for. If you’re looking to redeem points for a Ritz Carlton stay, the three complimentary nights offered by the Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card is worth 90,000 – 80,000 points. However, I give this round to the Sapphire Reserve because it has a lower spending requirement and the 100,000 point sign-up bonus can be transferred to over a dozen airline and hotel partners, giving cardholders lots of flexibility.

 

Category Bonuses

Chase Sapphire Reserve

  • 3 points on travel and dining worldwide.
  • 1 point per dollar on all other purchases.

The Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card

  • 5 points per $1 spent at any participating Ritz-Carlton or Marriott hotel.
  • 2 points per $1 spent on airline tickets purchased directly with the airline, and at car rental agencies and restaurants.
  • 1 point per $1: Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other card purchases

The Chase Sapphire Reserve comes out ahead when category bonuses are involved. The card offers 3 points per $1 on travel and dining, while Marriott only offers 2 – 5 points in these categories, with notable restrictions.

 

Transfer Partners

Chase Sapphire Reserve: Nearly a dozen Ultimate Rewards transfer partners, plus points are worth 50% more when redeemed through Ultimate Rewards Travel Portal.

The Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card: Transfer to SPG (3:1), Marriott, or Use for Hotel + Air awards

The Sapphire Reserve offers the best options when it comes to transfer partners. The Ultimate Rewards program allows members to transfer points at a 1:1 ratio to programs like United MileagePlus, Southwest Rapid Rewards, Hyatt Gold Passport, and even Ritz Carlton Rewards. Plus, points can be redeemed through the Ultimate Rewards Travel Portal at a favorable ratio. Hands down, the Sapphire Reserve has the best travel transfer partners.

 

Lounge Access

Chase Sapphire Reserve: Priority Pass Select membership

The Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card: Priority Pass Select membership

Both credit cards offer Priority Pass Select membership as a benefit. However, what gives the Ritz Carlton card the advantage here is that it offers Gold status, which can be matched to Marriott Gold. Marriott, in turn, offers Gold members complimentary club lounge access at certain hotels. Thus, with the Ritz Carlton card, cardholders get both airport and hotel lounge access.

 

The Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card
The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card

Read Review

Add to Favorites

$0 intro first year
$395 annual fee
A complimentary night stay at any tier 1-4 Ritz-Carlton hotel
After you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
Read Review »
Already have this card? Track it and maximize your rewards.
The information for the The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card has been collected independently by FTG. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
The Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card
Read Review
Add to Favorites
Sign Up Bonus
$0 intro first year
$395 annual fee
A complimentary night stay at any tier 1-4 Ritz-Carlton hotel
After you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
Annual Fee
Already have this card? Maximize your rewards.
Read the FTG Review »
The information for the The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card has been collected independently by FTG. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

 

Annual Travel Credits

Chase Sapphire Reserve: $300 annual travel credit

The Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card: $300 annual travel credit

  • Airline Ticket Discount Fly for less when you book a qualifying airline itinerary with TheRitz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card. Your card saves you $100 on the total cost of between 2 and 5 qualifying round-trip, domestic coach airline tickets purchases on the same itinerary.

The best annual travel credit goes to the Ritz Carlton Rewards card, which not only offers $300 like the Sapphire Reserve does, but also $100 savings on domestic coach tickets.

 

Global Entry/Pre-Check

Chase Sapphire Reserve: Receive a statement credit of up to $100 every 4 years as reimbursement for the Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee charged to your card.

The Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card: Use your Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card to pay for your Global Entry fee and receive a $100 statement credit every 4 years.

Both cards offer the same benefit, so we’ll call it a tie.

 

Hotel Benefits

Chase Sapphire Reserve:

  • Complimentary room upgrades, early check-in and late check-out at Luxury Hotel & Resort Collection.

The Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card:

  • Three Club Level Upgrades Annually
  • $100 Hotel Credit on paid stays of two nights or longer.
  • Complimentary Gold Elite status for the first account year. Spend $10,000 to maintain your Gold Elite status.
  • Earn Platinum Elite status after spending $75,000 on purchases each account year.

 

Hands down, the Ritz Carlton Rewards Credit Card offers the best hotel benefits. The three club level upgrades are generous on their own, but the ability to spend your way to top-tier Platinum status (which gets matched to SPG and Marriott Platinum) is pretty valuable.

The Sapphire Reserve and Ritz Carlton Rewards Card offer many of the same benefits, but the best option ultimately comes down to your personal travel preferences. As someone who likes flexibility, I choose the Sapphire Reserve. I’d like to know your thoughts: Which of these credit cards do you think is superior?

Powered by WPeMatico

eBay