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Why I Love & Downgrading The Chase Sapphire Preferred

REMINDER: The British Airways 100,000 Avios Credit Card offer ends this Thursday, June 7th.

Link To Sign Up For The British Airways 100,000 Avios Point Offer

Why I Love

I’ve talked about the many benefits of, but it still continues to surprise me with its usefulness.

If I had not received this email from informing me that Chase had charged me the annual fee on my Sapphire Preferred Card, I honestly probably wouldn’t have even noticed.

I thought the annual fee on my Card wasn’t due until July or August!

For those of you not familiar with, it is a free online money manager aka an extremely powerful online checkbook for all your checking, savings, investment, loans, 401k, credit cards accounts, etc. tracks all of your money in 1 place.

Whenever you get charged ATM fees, Bank service fees, or Credit Card fees, they will email you. is also EXTREMELY useful for tracking spending requirements.

So if you recently got any Credit Cards and have to spend X amount of dollars in a certain time period, with you can sort by Credit Card as well as time period to see just exactly how much you have spent.

Anyways I highly suggest you sign up for because it is 100% free and I can guarantee it will save you money by informing you of useless fees that you are being charged by your Bank!

Link To Sign Up For

Downgrading The Chase Sapphire Preferred

After I realized that Chase had already charged the annual fee on the Chase Sapphire Preferred, I decided it was time to downgrade to the free version of the Card and get a refund on the annual fee that I had been charged.

I simply called the number on the back of my Sapphire Preferred, and explained that I had been charged the annual fee and that although I liked the Card, I could not justify paying the annual fee, therefore I would like an annual fee waiver.

Now granted I really should have called in a few months ago and tried to cancel it, so as to get transferred to a retention specialist and negotiate some bonus miles or perhaps some kind of statement credit however when I called this evening I was told they could not offer me a fee waiver.

Since I already have a Chase Freedom, INK Bold, and United MileagePlus Explorer, I decided to downgrade to the Chase Sapphire which the fee-free version of the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

It still earns 2x Ultimate Rewards points on Dining, but it only earns 1x on Travel and does have a 3% foreign transaction fee.

If you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred and are thinking about downgrading, I suggest the following:

  • Call Chase 3 months before your annual fee is due and ask to talk to a retention specialist. See if you can negotiate some bonus points or if they can give you a Statement Credit to keep the Card.
  • If you are denied, then when the annual fee is due, downgrade to the Chase Freedom since that has the awesome 5% rotating quarterly categories and has no fee.

Anyways, they said they would downgrade my Sapphire Preferred to a regular Sapphire and refund the annual fee.

Although typically when I downgrade Cards, they just go into my drawer to collect dust, I will probably continue to use the Sapphire since it does earn 2x on Restaurants.



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  1. Isn't there also a difference in transferring your reward points when going from the Preferred to the basic Sapphire? I thought not all of the transfers were available (such as hotels), although I could be wrong.

  2. Let's say a relative only has the Chase Freedom card and you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred. Is it possible for the relative to transfer his/her points to your Sapphire Preferred account? Can those newly-transferred points in your account be redeemed for airline miles in your relative's frequent flyer account?

  3. Parag, I'm afraid Thomas is right, so I have to respectuflly question your decision and recommendation to downgrade your CSP card.

    On Chase's own site, they advertise this for the CSP card:
    "1:1 point transfer to participating frequent travel programs"

    …but this is conspicuously absent on their Chase Sapphire card description page:

    …and I'm pretty sure I've heard from multiple sources in the past that the free card does NOT allow you to transfer points to airlines and hotels. You can only use the points in the Ultimate Rewards Center to buy gift cards, pay for travel (1 point = 1 cent), etc.

    Bummer to hear that they wouldn't budge re: renewal sweetening, though! My renewal is coming up, and since I'm paying >$800 on card fees annually, I'm getting a bit anxious about minimizing that cost footprint! (or at least mitigating it with point bonuses)

  4. @Adam – You are 100% correct. The chase rep. on the phone gave me the wrong info last night about still being able to transfer to airlines and hotels because I still have the INK bold which has that feature. Thanks for the catch though! -Parag

  5. @Tanu – i jut called Chase and asked. You can't move UR points between accounts that don't have the same name. So unless the other person was an authorized user on your card, you couldn't move them. However there are no limitations on transferring UR points into frequent flyer accounts. Doesn't matter whose name is in account on the receiving end. -Parag

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