Credit Cards » Compare Credit Cards » American Express Platinum vs Chase Sapphire Reserve: Which Is Better?
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American Express Platinum vs Chase Sapphire Reserve: Which Is Better?

When it comes to premium travel rewards, both may be the best cards in the market. But who is the winner between the two? Here's our analysis
Author: Baruch Mann (Silvermann)
Baruch Mann (Silvermann)

Writer, Contributor

Experience

Baruch Mann (Silvermann) is an experienced investor, financial expert and founder of The Smart Investor. Above all, he is passionate about teaching people how to manage their money and helping millions on their journey to a better financial future.

Review & Fact Check: Baruch Mann (Silvermann)

Baruch Mann (Silvermann)

Financial Expert, The Smart Investor CEO

Experience

Baruch Mann (Silvermann) is a financial expert and founder of The Smart Investor. Above all, he is passionate about teaching people how to manage their money and helping millions on their journey to a better financial future.
Author: Baruch Mann (Silvermann)
Baruch Mann (Silvermann)

Writer, Contributor

Experience

Baruch Mann (Silvermann) is an experienced investor, financial expert and founder of The Smart Investor. Above all, he is passionate about teaching people how to manage their money and helping millions on their journey to a better financial future.

Review & Fact Check: Baruch Mann (Silvermann)

Baruch Mann (Silvermann)

Financial Expert, The Smart Investor CEO

Experience

Baruch Mann (Silvermann) is a financial expert and founder of The Smart Investor. Above all, he is passionate about teaching people how to manage their money and helping millions on their journey to a better financial future.

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Table of Content

Both the The Platinum Card® from American Express and Chase Sapphire Reserve® are designed for those with excellent credit and both cards have an annual fee. However, this is reflected in the possible rewards, particularly for travelers. The reward structure is tailored to frequent travelers with higher tier rewards for flights and hotels.

But, there are some crucial differences between the two cards that we will look at in more detail to help you to decide which is the best option for you

General Comparison

The Platinum Card® from American Express

The Platinum Card®
Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Annual Fee
$550
Rewards
5X points on up to $500,000 spent on directly-booked airfare and flights and prepaid hotels booked through American Express Travel (per calendar year), 2X points on prepaid car rentals through American Express Travel and 1X points on all other purchases.
5X total points on air travel and 10X total points on hotels, car rentals when you purchase through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, immediately after earning your $300 annual travel credit. Also, earn 3x points on dining at restaurants and travel (after meeting the $300 travel credit), then 1x points per dollar spent on all other purchases
Welcome bonus
100,000 points when you spend $6,000 in the first six months.
60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
0% Intro APR
None
N/A
Foreign Transaction Fee
0%
Purchase APR
18.99% – 25.99% Variable
19.24% – 26.24% Variable
Read Review
Read Review

Compare Rewards: Which Card Gives More?

We’ve looked at many aspects of the different cards, but how do they compare when it comes to your spending habits and what rewards you can earn.

Since both of these cards are aimed at travelers, we’ll assume that you travel every month to make our comparison. We’ll also assume that you book any flights and hotels through the Amex or Chase credit card portal, where available.

As you can see, although the points you would accumulate are similar for both cards, the lower Chase Sapphire Reserve redemption rate means that you will earn less with this card compared to the Amex Platinum.

While the annual fee on the Amex Platinum is higher, assuming you only have yourself as an authorized Chase Sapphire Reserve user, the difference in annual fee only adds $12 per month. 

Overall, there is no clear winner here – and the rewards you'll get is mainly depends on your spending habits.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

Spend Per Category
The Platinum Card®
Chase Sapphire Reserve
$10,000 – U.S Supermarkets
10,000 points
10,000 points
$5,000 – Restaurants
5,000 points
15,000 points
$6,000 – Hotels
30,000 points
60,000 points
$6,000 – Airline
30,000 points
18,000 points
$4,000 – Gas
4,000 points
4,000 points
Total Points
79,000 points
107,000 points
Estimated Redemption Value
1 point ~ 0.6 – 1.6 cents
1 point ~ 1 – 1.5 cents
Estimated Annual Value
$474 – $1,264
$1,070 – $1,605

Compare Welcome Bonus And Fees

Both cards have a generous introductory bonus. The Amex Platinum offers 100,000 points when you spend $6,000 in the first six months. This is worth approximately $2,000 to $2,500 depending on your redemption method. 

The Chase Sapphire Reserve introductory bonus is not as generous. You’ll receive 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. This is almost as much as you need to spend with Amex, but you have half the time to do it. The point conversion for Chase is also a little lower, so the bonus points have an approximate value of $750.

Both cards have an annual fee, but the Amex fee is higher at $695, with one proviso. Chase charges a $550 annual fee, but you’ll pay $75 for each additional authorized user. So, if you have two additional users, you’ll pay a $700 annual fee, which takes it to pretty much the same level as the Amex Platinum.

Neither company charges foreign transaction fees with these cards and the late fees and cash advance fees are similar. One crucial fee difference is that while Chase charges a balance transfer fee of $5 or 5%, Amex does not permit balance transfers with this card.

Compare The Perks

American Express Platinum Card

The Platinum Card® from American Express

  • Up to $200 hotel credit in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings, which requires a minimum two-night stay, through American Express Travel when you pay with your Platinum Card®. Enrollment Required.. Enrollment Required.
  • Up to $240 or $20 per month in Digital Entertainment Credit when you pay for one or more The New York Times, Peacock, SiriusXM or Audible products with your card. Enrollment Required.
  • Up to $155 in Walmart+ credit. When you use your card to pay for your monthly Walmart+ membership, you’ll get the full cost back every month. Enrollment Required.
  • Up to $200 in Uber Cash. You’ll get up to $15 credit each month via an exclusive Uber app experience, with a $20 bonus in December. You can also become an Uber VIP to be matched with top rated drivers without needing to meet any minimum ride requirements. Enrollment Required.
  • Up to $200 in Airline fee credit per year when you charge incidental travel fees from selected airlines on your card. Enrollment Required.
  • Up to $300 back every year for eligible Equinox memberships when you enroll and pay using your card.
  • Up to $189 back per year when you use your card to pay for a CLEAR® membership. Enrollment Required.
  • When you travel more than 100 miles from home, the Global Assist® Hotline is available 24/7 for emergency assistance and coordination services
  • Trip Delay Insurance and trip cancellation can help reimburse certain additional expenses purchased  when a covered reason delays your trip for more than 6 hours. You can also get reimbursing for your non-refundable expenses.
  • Cardholders can talk to Amex Platinum Travel counselors  –  experts at creating personalized itineraries and making tailored recommendations to help make the most of your travels. 
  • You may be covered for Damage to or Theft of a Rental Vehicle in a Covered Territory
  • When you book Hotels & Resorts with American Express Travel , you're eligible for extra perks and a $100 experience credit to savor something unique at each property.
  • receive either a $100 statement credit for Global Entry or an up to $85 statement credit for TSA PreCheck® through any Authorized Enrollment Provider
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The Platinum Card® from American Express

Rewards Plan:
1X – 5X 5X points on up to $500,000 spent on directly-booked airfare and flights and prepaid hotels booked through American Express Travel (per calendar year), 2X points on prepaid car rentals through American Express Travel and 1X points on all other purchases
Welcome Bonus: 100,000 points 100,000 points when you spend $6,000 in the first six months

AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard®

Rewards Plan:
Up to 2x miles 2 miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases and 1 mile for every $1 spent on other purchases
Welcome Bonus: 50,000 miles 50,000 bonus miles after spending $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening

United Quest℠ Card

Rewards Plan:
Up to 3x miles 3 miles per $1 spent on United purchases immediately after earning your $125 annual United purchase credit, 2 miles on all other travel and select streaming services, 1 mile on all other purchases
Welcome Bonus: 70,000 miles 70,000 bonus miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open

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The product offers that appear on this site are from companies from which this website receives compensation. 

Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers.

Chase Sapphire Reserve

  • $300 annual travel credit. You’ll receive up to $300 statement credit for reimbursement on travel purchases charged to your card.
  • Travel reimbursement for lost luggage up to $3,000 per passenger and if your carrier travel is delayed for more than 6 hours, up to $500 per ticket.
  • Pay Yourself Back offers, which allow you to redeem points for current offers with a higher redemption value.
  • Access to Chase Unlimited Rewards where your points are worth more in specific areas. For example, if you use your points for travel, 50,000 points are worth $750.
  • Split purchases of $100+ into fixed monthly payments via the My Chase Plan feature.
  • Complimentary access to VIP airport lounge access. There are over 1,000 lounges across 500+ cities around the world.
  • The Chase Sapphire Reserve card will reimburse your application fee for TSA Precheck or Global Entry once every four years. This cost is usually around $85 to $100.
  • 50% More Ultimate Chase Rewards – your points go further when you book through Ultimate Chase Rewards. These rewards include all things travel-related, such as flights, hotels, cruises, and car rentals.
  • Cardholders Take advantage of exclusive benefits at a variety of hand-picked top hotels and resorts around the world, such as complimentary room upgrades, early check-in and late check-out.
  • There are no dates when the points cannot be redeemed. They can be redeemed at any time of the year. There is also no expiration or use limits.
  • Travel Interruption/Cancelation Insurance: If you book your trip with your card, you’ll be reimbursed up to $10,000 per person and $20,000 per trip if your trip is cut short or canceled due to covered situations.
  • Baggage Delay Insurance: You’ll receive up to $100 per day for five days for essential purchases if your baggage is delayed by your passenger carrier. You’ll also get up to $500 per ticket if your common carrier travel is delayed for over 12 hours.
  • Auto Collision Rental Damage Waiver: If you charge the entire cost of your rental to your card, you’ll have supplemental theft and collision damage cover for free.
  • Purchase Protection: New purchases are covered for up to 120 days against theft or damage. There is a claim limit of $500 and $50,000 per account. You’ll also get extended warranty protection on eligible warranties. If you lost or misplaced your credit card, you can quickly lock it on Chase website.

Compare The Drawbacks

Of course, no credit card is perfect, so it is important to be aware of the potential drawbacks before you make your final card decision.

American Express Platinum Card

The Platinum Card® from American Express

American Express Platinum Card has higher annual fee. Cardholders pay $695 annually compared to $550 on Chase Sapphire Reserve.

American Express does not allow balance transfers to its Platinum card. So, if you are looking for a card that will allow you to consolidate all your credit card balances, this is not the right card option for you.

Although the Amex Platinum card does have some great travel benefits with no foreign transaction fees, it is not a popular card network in every country in the world. Outside of Italy and the U.K, many retailers in European countries do not support Amex transactions. This means that if you’re a global traveler, you may not be able to use your card everywhere you go.

Chase Sapphire Reserve

The annual fee for the Chase Sapphire Reserve is $550 per year, which is high even for such great rewards and benefits. Furthermore, you’ll need to pay an extra $75 for each additional authorized user. So, if you want to share the card, your annual fee could quickly skyrocket.

Compare Redemption Options

American Express points are worth up to $0.02, but this depends on whether you choose gift cards, merchandise, premium travel or entertainment options. Chase has an Ultimate Rewards program through which you can redeem your rewards. Points are worth up to $0.015 each with several redemption options. Some of the options include:

  • Travel: Both companies offer travel deals for hotel stays and other promotions that tend to offer the highest redemption rates.
  • Statement Credit/ Cashback: You can redeem your accumulated rewards as a statement credit.
  • Gift Cards: Amex and Chase typically have a variety of gift cards from different retailers including entertainment services, restaurants, and department stores.

To claim any of these reward options, you just need to log into the card app or your credit card portal. Select your chosen option and follow the instructions to complete the redemption process.

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How to Maximize Cards Benefits?

If you want to make the best use of your American Express Platinum Card, there are some tips to help you:

  • Hit the intro bonus spend requirement: You’ll earn 100,000 points when you spend $6,000 in the first six months, so make sure you reach this spend requirement.
  • Purchase hotel stays via American Express Travel to obtain up to $200 credit per year.
  • Use your card for subscriptions and memberships. With credit for digital entertainment subscriptions, Walmart+, Equinox membership, and CLEAR®  membership, make sure that you use your Platinum card to pay for these services. With all of these subscriptions and memberships, you could earn up to $874 per year in statement credit.
  • Link your card to your Uber account. You’ll have access to an exclusive Uber app experience with Uber VIP status and up to $200 Uber Cash credit per year if you link your card to your account.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

If you want to make the best use of your Chase Sapphire Reserve, there are some tips to help you:

  • Meet this spending criteria: You’ll only receive the intro bonus points if you meet this spending criteria .
  • Link your Gold Card to your Uber account: You can earn up to $120 per year, or $10 a month in Uber Credit when you link your card to your Uber account.
  • Check the Dining Partner list: American Express has a list of participating dining partners and if you make purchases at these venues, you can qualify for up to $10 per month of statement credit.
  • Book fares with your card: If you’re paying for train, bus, or airplane tickets, be sure to use your Gold Card and you’ll get free baggage insurance for up to $1,250 if your bags are lost, stolen, or damaged.

Customer Reviews: Which Card Wins?

American Express® Gold Card
Chase Sapphire Reserve®
App Rating (iOS)
4.9
4.8
App Rating (Android)
4.2
4.4
BBB Rating (A-F)
A+
B+
WalletHub
4
3.5
Contect Options
phone/social
phone/social
Availability
24/7
7 AM – 11 PM

Satisfied customers praise the travel benefits with this card and the high potential for earning rewards. With 5x points on flights and hotel stays booked through the Amex portal, you can quickly boost your rewards balance if you’re a frequent traveler. Other reviews highlight redemption possibilities with a diverse variety of partners.

Negative reviews report some frustration that there are no rewards for everyday spending such as gas stations and U.S. supermarkets. Unlike the American Express® Gold, which offers 4X points on U.S. supermarkets (Terms Apply)  this is not an Amex Platinum feature. 

The Platinum Card® from American Express

Satisfied borrowers report that the Sapphire Reserve offers a great reward package with lots of additional benefits. From free memberships to discounts and upgrades, members report that the benefits package easily negates the $550 membership fee.

Many users report getting upgrades on rental cars and get a great deal of use out of their Priority Pass program. Additionally, for frequent travelers, the $300 travel reimbursement is a great bonus.

Negative reviews report that the customer service needs improvement. There are a number of reviews complaining about long call hold waits and delays in response to queries or issues. There are also complaints about no rate negotiations.

Whether your credit has improved or you’re suffering from financial hardship, the standard reply appears to be that the agent “cannot do anything”.

Top Offers From Our Partners

The Platinum Card® from American Express

Rewards Plan:
1X – 5X 5X points on up to $500,000 spent on directly-booked airfare and flights and prepaid hotels booked through American Express Travel (per calendar year), 2X points on prepaid car rentals through American Express Travel and 1X points on all other purchases
Welcome Bonus: 100,000 points 100,000 points when you spend $6,000 in the first six months

Rewards Plan:
1X – 10X 5X total points on air travel and 10X total points on hotels, car rentals when you purchase through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, immediately after earning your $300 annual travel credit. Also, earn 3x points on dining at restaurants and travel (after meeting the $300 travel credit), then 1x points per dollar spent on all other purchases
Welcome Bonus: 60,000 points 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening

AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard®

Rewards Plan:
Up to 2x miles 2 miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases and 1 mile for every $1 spent on other purchases
Welcome Bonus: 50,000 miles 50,000 bonus miles after spending $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening

Advertiser Disclosure

The product offers that appear on this site are from companies from which this website receives compensation. 

When You Might Want the Amex Platinum Card?

The American Express Platinum Card is a flexible option that could be good if:

  • You’re a frequent traveler and you’re comfortable booking flights and hotel stays via the American Express portal. The card has no foreign transaction fees and you’ll earn 5x points on your flights and hotels. 

  • You enjoy memberships and subscriptions. There is the potential for up to $874 credit per year when you use your card to pay for subscriptions and memberships such as Walmart+, Equinox, and CLEAR®.

  • You’re a frequent Uber customer. You’ll have access to exclusive Uber app experiences and Uber VIP status, plus up to $200 in Uber Cash per year if you link your card to your Uber account.

When the Chase Sapphire Reserve Wins?

The Chase Sapphire Reserve Card is a good choice if:

  • You’re a very frequent traveler. In addition to earning 5x points on flights and 10x points on hotels and car rentals, you can receive up to $300 statement credit for travel purchase reimbursements. You can also access VIP airport lounges in 500+ cities around the world and enjoy reimbursement for lost luggage and carrier delays.
  • You frequently rideshare: With a free Lyft Pink membership for a year and up to 15% off rides, this card offers some great rewards for Lyft users. For a limited time, you can also receive 10x points.
  • Travel on top: If you like to travel in style, cardholders have access to over 1,000 VIP airport lounges around the world. You also receive free credits each year for services such as TSA Precheck or Global Entry.

Bottom Line

Both the Amex Platinum and Chase Sapphire Reserve offer some excellent rewards that should easily negate the annual fee. With strategic purchase planning, you can maximize your rewards, especially if you are a frequent traveler. 

However, the differences between these two options will help you determine which is the best one for you.

Compare The Alternatives

Both cards are definitely considered as one of the best in the niche. However, there are always  recommended alternatives to check out before applying:

Bank of America® travel rewards

capital-one-venture

chase_sapphire_preffered

Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
Annual Fee
$0
$95
$95
Rewards
1.5X 1.5 points for every $1 you spend on all purchases everywhere, every time and no expiration on points
2X 2X miles per dollar on every purchase, plus 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
2X – 5X 5x total points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3x points on dining and 2x on other travel purchases. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases
Welcome bonus
25,000 points 25,000 online bonus points after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening – which can be redeemed for a $250 statement credit toward travel purchases
75,000 miles
60,000 points 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
Foreign Transaction Fee
0%
None
0%
Purchase APR
16.24% – 26.24% variable APR on purchases and balance transfers
17.49% – 25.49% Variable
18.24% – 25.24% Variable

FAQ

You need to meet the credit score and income requirements when you are applying for an Amex Platinum card, which is higher than a lot of other cards.

Every type of purchase through the Amex Platinum card will earn cashback points. Therefore, you do not have to deal with any sort of exclusions.

Your points won’t expire once you keep the credit card account open. This means that you won’t be facing any sort of deadline in order to use up your rewards.

The usual minimum credit limit for this card is $10,000. The exact credit limit will be dependent on the answers that you provide in your application.

Review Travel Credit Cards

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Rewards Plan:
1X – 10X 5X total points on air travel and 10X total points on hotels, car rentals when you purchase through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, immediately after earning your $300 annual travel credit. Also, earn 3x points on dining at restaurants and travel (after meeting the $300 travel credit), then 1x points per dollar spent on all other purchases
Welcome Bonus: 60,000 points 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening

chase_sapphire_preffered

Rewards Plan:
2X – 5X 5x total points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3x points on dining and 2x on other travel purchases. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases
Welcome Bonus: 60,000 points 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening

The Platinum Card® from American Express

Rewards Plan:
1X – 5X 5X points on up to $500,000 spent on directly-booked airfare and flights and prepaid hotels booked through American Express Travel (per calendar year), 2X points on prepaid car rentals through American Express Travel and 1X points on all other purchases
Welcome Bonus: 100,000 points 100,000 points when you spend $6,000 in the first six months

Advertiser Disclosure

The product offers that appear on this site are from companies from which this website receives compensation. 

Suggested Videos From Our Channel

Best Cards Per Category
Best Cards Per CS
Best Cards Per Issuer
Top Offers From Our Partners

capital-one-venture

Rewards Plan:
2X 2X miles per dollar on every purchase, plus 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
Welcome Bonus: 75,000 miles 75,000 miles once they spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening

Bank of America® travel rewards

Rewards Plan:
1.5X 1.5 points for every $1 you spend on all purchases everywhere, every time and no expiration on points
Welcome Bonus:25,000 points 25,000 online bonus points after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening – which can be redeemed for a $250 statement credit toward travel purchases

chase_sapphire_preffered

Rewards Plan:
2X – 5X 5x total points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3x points on dining and 2x on other travel purchases. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases
Welcome Bonus: 60,000 points 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening

Advertiser Disclosure

The product offers that appear on this site are from companies from which this website receives compensation. 

Editorial Note: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.

Credit Card Reviews Methodology

In order to determine the best possible credit cards, we look at things like fees, interest rates and rewards. We do this with companies that are associated with us as partners as well as other offerings. From there, we make a decision about what the best card is related to different categories and needs. We focus on interest rate cost & fees, especially the cost of carrying a balance, rewards – cards accumulate rewards in different currencies—points, miles, cash back—and their values vary widely usability – cards that accept a wide range of credit profiles and offer simple solutions for things like checking your credit score or contacting. We also consider customer reviews.

We look at cards related to good or excellent credit ratings that will then provide a range of different benefits and improvements for someone who has these scores. We also look at low fees when it comes to those who have lower credit scores.