The Chase Sapphire Reserve is one of the best travel credit cards on the market, but its high fee can be hard to maintain during this challenging time. To assist cardholders, the issuer is offering a $100 statement credit to offset some of the cost.
As the credit card industry adjusts to the new reality brought by the COVID-19 pandemic, issuers continue to take measures to assist cardholders.
Chase has encouraged its customers to call the number on the back of their cards if they have been affected by the coronavirus outbreak and need help with their accounts.
On April 1, Chase also notified select Chase Sapphire Reserve customers of a $100 statement credit to help them cover the annual fee for 2020. Earlier this year, the fee jumped from $450 to $550, when new benefits were added to the card, but the announcement effectively delays the increase for eligible customers.
Who is eligible for the annual fee credit?
According to Chase, Sapphire Reserve cardholders whose cards have a renewal date between April 1 and July 1, 2020, are eligible for the offer. No actions are required from the customers, as a one-time $100 credit will be applied toward the annual fee automatically.
“We know cardmembers might have had questions, so we are reaching out to them directly notifying them of this and no action is needed,” a Chase representative confirmed. “This is about the current time, and the card and the value it provides is the same. We know this is an ever-evolving and extraordinary situation.”
As you can see from the statement sent out to cardholders, if you have closed your Reserve account before renewal or upgraded or downgraded to another Chase card, you will not be eligible for the statement credit at this time.
Should you keep your Chase Sapphire Reserve card?
The Chase Sapphire Reserve is one of the most popular travel credit cards on the market – but also one of the most expensive.
On Jan. 12, 2020, the issuer added several new benefits to the Reserve card, including one year of free Lyft Pink and DashPass memberships (activate both by Mar. 31, 2022), a 10 points per dollar rewards rate on Lyft purchases (through March 2022). At the same time, Chase upped the annual fee by $100.
Still, the benefits and perks the Reserve card offers are hard to compete with, and Ultimate Rewards have great value. It is one of the best cards for frequent travelers and, for those who qualify, the $100 annual fee credit should make it a little easier to maintain this year despite the fee increase.
See related: Chase Sapphire Reserve: Is it worth it?
At the same time, the novel coronavirus pandemic has affected many people in different ways. With layoffs and furloughs happening nationwide, many consumers might have had to change priorities from earning rewards to saving cash. Additionally, travel and dining, the two spending categories the Reserve card is best for, have taken a big hit, making it hard to offset the annual fee.
If you find yourself in a situation where you have to consider closing your Reserve or any other credit card, it’s recommended that you contact the issuer and discuss possible solutions. In these challenging times, credit card companies encourage cardholders to seek assistance, which can make it possible for you to keep your cards despite current difficulties.