Noob Q&A: “Should I Cancel My Sapphire Preferred If I Have An Ink Card?”
Q: “Should I cancel my Sapphire Preferred if I have an Ink card?”
Noob reader, Tory, emailed me this question over the weekend.
A: “Yes, and no.”
The Chase Sapphire Preferred®, in my mind, is still the best personal premium rewards card out there. But is it worth paying the fee if you have the Ink Plus or Ink Bold? I would say that it isn’t, but I still wouldn’t cancel.
I would downgrade the Sapphire Preferred to the regular Sapphire, which doesn’t have an annual fee (previous blog post on downgrading my Sapphire Preferred). You lose out on the 7% annual dividend, but that’s probably not a huge deal unless you’re a heavy spender. You also lose out on the option to transfer your Sapphire points to travel partners, but if you have an Ink Bold® or Ink Plus® Business Card you can “combine” your points and then transfer them out to one of the travel partners.
By downgrading instead of canceling, you’re letting your average age of account age, and that’s very nice for your credit score. You’re also keeping a Chase card open which you can use in negotiations during a reconsideration call on a new card. It’s always good to keep your existing credit limit so you have some wiggle room, and it’s better for your credit utilization. Here’s my full post on “canceling rewards credit cards.”
You can try for a retention bonus, but I haven’t heard of many Sapphire Preferred success stories.
The regular Sapphire still allows you the option to earn 2 points per $1 on dining, so you aren’t losing out on that killer perk. It does have a foreign transaction fee, but the Ink cards don’t.
I prefer to keep the Ink cards open because of the 5x earning potential on office supplies, internet, phone services, and satellite. Huge perks. You also get 2 points on gas and hotels. They are currently my favorite cards in my wallet. I actually have 3 Ink cards – that’s 150,000 Ultimate Rewards points earned last year from Ink sign-up bonuses alone. Read here about getting multiple Ink cards. I’ve heard successful reports of being able to downgrade your Ink Bold to the “no fee” Ink Cash, but I haven’t tried yet. I’ll let you know how it goes when it’s time for me to downgrade one of my Ink cards.
If you don’t have an Ink card, then you should keep the Sapphire Preferred. The card’s many benefits warrant paying the $95 annual fee. It earns uber valuable Ultimate Rewards points, gives you access to the Ultimate Rewards shopping portal, and it’s made out of some kind of metal. Serious respect. It’s usually the first card I recommend to people who are getting started in the rewards travel game.
If you do have an Ink card, then downgrade your Sapphire Preferred. That’s what I did, especially since Jordan has the Sapphire Preferred. There’s no need for us to have 2 household Sapphire Preferred cards.
I hope this helps as you contemplate keeping or downgrading your Sapphire Preferred.
— Noob Master