With excellent ongoing rewards, valuable new card member welcome offers, and flexible redemption options, the CardName and CardName offer great value with relatively low annual fees. Taking into account the numerous benefits that these cards provide, both of them were named to the CardRatings 2021 list of Best Travel Rewards Credit Cards. While these cards provide a lot of perks on their own, there are some key differentiators that you should take into account when deciding which card is for you. American Express is a CardRatings advertiser.
Like many of their competitors with similar features, both of these cards come with annual fees. While having an annual fee is common for many issuers and cards, both the CardName and the CardName annual fees are noteworthy in their differences. The Sapphire Preferred® has a AnnualFees annual fee compared to the higher AnnualFees annual fee with the American Express Gold card (See Rates and Fees). Both cards do have features and benefits that help to justify or offset the annual fees though. However, if you are evaluating cards based heavily on the fee itself, the Sapphire Preferred® card has the advantage in this area with its lower cost.
Ongoing rewards rates
Another noticeable difference between the CardName and the CardName is their everyday rewards earning rates. While both cards have tiered rewards earning, where purchases in certain categories earn more than purchases in other categories, the rates that the cards earn are different.
With the Sapphire Preferred® card, you have tiered rewards earning with 5X points on all travel booked through the Ultimate Rewards® portal; 3X Ultimate Rewards® points earned per $1 spent on dining purchases (including eligible delivery and takeout); 3X on select streaming services; 3X on online grocery store purchases (excluding Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs); 2X on other travel; and earn 1X point per $1 spent on all other purchases. The Gold from American Express earns 4X Membership Rewards® points per dollar spent when you dine at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X). This card also earns 3X points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com, and 1X point per $1 on all other purchases.
The Gold card has higher points earning potential in dining out, U.S grocery spend, and if you book flights directly with airlines or on amextravel.com; however, the Sapphire Preferred® has the advantage in that all travel spend earns 2X points (including categories like hotels, car rentals, etc.) instead of just specific airfare spend. Depending on your spending habits, either card could be more valuable for everyday points earning.
The welcome bonus offered to new cardholders is solid with both of these cards. With the CardName you can earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after spending $4,000 on eligible purchases with the card within the first six months. The CardName, on the other hand, is currently offering new cardholders 60,000 bonus points, but after spending $4,000 on purchases within the first three months of opening an account. For the same minimum spend amount, the Sapphire Preferred® card has a lead in the value of the welcome offer since points are worth up to $750 when redeemed for travel through the Chase portal, but the Gold Card offers more time to reach the spending threshold.
The points earned by the CardName and CardName can be redeemed in a number of different ways. Both the Ultimate Rewards® points earned by the Sapphire Preferred® card and the Membership Rewards® points earned by the American Express Gold card can be redeemed directly for travel, by transferring points to airline and hotel partners, and redeeming points for purchases on Amazon.com using the Shop with Points feature. One big differentiator for the points redemption between the two cards is the travel partners that you can transfer to. The Membership Rewards® program from American Express has over 20 airline and hotel partners including Delta and Hilton Honors while the Ultimate Rewards® program from Chase has 13 transfer partners including Hyatt. It’s also worth noting that Sapphire Preferred® points are worth 25% more when redeemed for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
To learn more, check out the table below to compare the various rewards, benefits, features, and fees associated with each card.
Chase Sapphire Preferred® vs. American Express® Gold Card
AnnualFees; See Rates and Fees
New Cardholder Bonus Offer
Earn 60,000 points – worth $750 in travel when redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards® – once spending $4,000 within the first three months of account membership.
Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after spending $4,000 on eligible purchases in the first six months with your new card
Earn 5X points per $1 on travel booked through Ultimate Rewards®; 3X points per $1 spent on dining (including eligible takeout and delivery), select streaming services, online grocery store purchases (excluding Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs); 2X points per $1 spent on travel and 1X point per $1 on everything else.
Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points per $1 spent at restaurants, including takeout and delivery in the U.S., and 4X points at U.S. supermarkets (up to $25,000 spent each year in supermarket purchases, then 1X point per $1). Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points per $1 on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com
Ultimate Rewards® can be redeemed directly for travel, transferred to airline and hotel partners, and redeemed for purchases on Amazon.com using the Shop with Points feature
Points are worth 25% more when redeemed for travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® portal
Chase Sapphire Preferred® travel partners include:
- British Airways Executive Club
- World of Hyatt
- Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
- Marriott Bonvoy™
- United MileagePlus®
- Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards®
- For the full list, please see our Chase Ultimate Rewards® guide
Membership Rewards® can be redeemed directly for travel, transferred to airline and hotel partners, and redeemed for purchases on Amazon.com using the Shop with Points feature
American Express Gold Card travel partners include:
- Air France KLM
- Asia Miles
- British Airways Executive Club
- Hilton Honors
- Marriott Bonvoy
- For the full list, please see our guide to American Express Membership Rewards®
Purchase and Balance Transfer APR
RegAPR See Rates and Fees
Foreign Transaction Fees
foreign_fee; See Rates and Fees
- $50 annual hotel credit for stays booked through Ultimate Rewards
- Lost luggage reimbursement up to $3,000 per passenger
- Travel accident insurance up to $500,000
- Travel and emergency assistance services
- Auto rental collision damage coverage which provides reimbursement up to the actual cash value of the vehicle for theft and collision damage for most rental cars in the U.S. and abroad
- Earn 5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022; That’s 3X points in addition to the 2X points you already earn on travel
- Trip cancellation/interruption insurance up to $10,000 per person and $20,000 per trip for your pre-paid, non-refundable travel expenses
- Trip delay reimbursement up to $500 per ticket if you’re delayed more than 12 hours or require an overnight stay
- Baggage delay insurance up to $100 a day for five days for baggage delays over 6 hours
- $120 dining credit— earn up to a total of $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with your card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations; enrollment required
- $120 Uber Cash— Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year
- Hotel Credit up to $100— book through The Hotel Collection with American Express Travel and get a $100 hotel credit when you stay at least two consecutive nights
- Car rental loss and damage insurance
- Access to Global Assist Hotline which provides coordination and assistance services such as lost passport replacement assistance, translation services, missing luggage assistance, and emergency legal and medical referrals when traveling more than 100 miles from home
- Baggage insurance plan up to $1,250 for carry-on baggage and up to $500 for checked baggage
- Enrollment required for select benefits
- Zero Liability Protection which means you won’t be held responsible for unauthorized charges made with your card or account information
- Purchase protection covers new purchases made with your card for 120 days against damage or theft up to $500 per claim and $50,000 per account
- Extended warranty protection extends the time period of the U.S. manufacturer’s warranty on items purchases with your card by an additional year on eligible warranties of three years or less
- Dispute resolution— if there is a fraudulent or incorrect charge on your statement, American Express will work with you to resolve the issue
See Rates and Fees for the CardName