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Credit Cards

What credit score do you need to qualify for the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card?

It's one of the best travel rewards credit cards available. Here's what you'll need to qualify.

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The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is one of the best travel rewards credit cards on the market, offering cardholders a lucrative welcome bonus of 60,000 points after they spend at least $4,000 within three months of account opening. If you were to redeem the bonus points via the Chase Ultimate Rewards® travel portal, it would be worth $750. Although you can potentially get more value when transferring your points to Chase's travel partners like United and Southwest.

For a modest $95 annual fee, Chase Sapphire Preferred cardholders will receive access to a host of different travel-related benefits such as trip cancellation and interruption insurance, a collision damage waiver for car rentals, baggage delay insurance and zero liability protection, as well as no foreign transaction fees when using the card abroad.

You'll also have access to perks such as a complimentary year of DashPass membership (to use for food delivery with DoorDash and Caviar) when you activate the offer by Dec. 31, 2024, and a $50 annual hotel credit when you book your hotel stay directly through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

On Chase’s secure site
  • Rewards

    $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3X points on dining, 2X points on all other travel purchases, and 1X points on all other purchases

  • Welcome bonus

    Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

  • Annual fee

    $95

  • Intro APR

    None

  • Regular APR

    18.24% - 25.24% variable on purchases and balance transfers

  • Balance transfer fee

    Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater

  • Foreign transaction fee

    None

  • Credit needed

    Excellent/Good

Terms apply.

 

Most importantly, cardholders can earn transferable points — 3X points for dining, including takeout and certain delivery services, as well as select streaming services and online grocery shopping; 5X points for travel purchased via Chase Ultimate Rewards® (not counting the $50 annual hotel credit); 5X points on Lyft rides through Mar. 31, 2025; 2X points on all other travel purchases; 1X points for all other purchases; plus a 10% points bonus on your card anniversary.

The Chase Ultimate Rewards® points you'll earn can then be redeemed in a number of ways or transferred to any of Chase's airline and hotel partners, including United, Southwest, British Airways, Air France, JetBlue, Hyatt, Marriott and IHG, making this one of the most valuable travel rewards cards out there.

Keep in mind that in order to even qualify for this card, you'll need to have a decent credit score. Below, Select takes a look at the kind of credit score you'll need to become a Chase Sapphire Preferred cardholder.

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What credit score should you aim for?

First off, most credit card issuers will look at your FICO credit score in order to determine your eligibility for a new card. FICO scores range from 300 to 850, with higher scores indicating a higher likelihood that you'll be able to pay off your balance on time and in full.

FICO score ranges:

  • Very poor: 300 to 579
  • Fair: 580 to 669
  • Good: 670 to 739
  • Very good: 740 to 799
  • Exceptional: 800 to 850

Generally, you'll need to have a credit score of at least 700 in order to qualify for the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card. It is possible for you to qualify with a lower score — or even be rejected with a higher score — but to improve your odds of being approved, aim to have a score above 700.

To maintain a good credit score, you'll need to make your payments on time, keep a low credit utilization ratio and have a long credit history. Here's how each category contributes to your overall credit score.

FICO factors:

  • Payment history (35%) — If you've made your previous payments on time
  • Amounts owed (30%) — Your credit utilization ratio, or the ratio of the amount of credit you're using to the amount that's been extended and owed on your accounts
  • Length of credit history (15%) — The amount of time you've had credit
  • New credit (10%) — How often you open new accounts
  • Credit mix (10%) — Whether you have different types of credit, such as installment loans or revolving lines of credit

You could also benefit from signing up for a service such as Experian Boost, which uses your on-time payments for select subscription services and utilities to calculate your credit score.

Experian Boost™

On Experian's secure site
  • Cost

    Free

  • Average credit score increase

    13 points, though results vary

  • Credit report affected

    Experian

  • Credit scoring model used

    FICO®

Terms apply.

How to sign up for Experian Boost™:

  1. Connect the bank account(s) you use to pay your bills
  2. Choose and verify the positive payment data you want added to your Experian credit file
  3. Receive an updated FICO® Score

Learn more about eligible payments and how Experian Boost™ works.

Credit card issuers do, however, look at factors besides your credit score, such as your annual income, how long you've had credit and how many credit cards you've applied for recently. 

For example, Chase is known for its strict 5/24 rule, which means Chase credit card applicants won't be approved for a new card if they've opened five or more personal credit cards within the past 24 months. Note that this rule applies to all credit cards, not just the ones offered by Chase. 

Another factor issuers consider is the length of your credit history. When I first applied for the Chase Sapphire Preferred, I was rejected immediately even though I had a FICO credit score above 700 (I had been an authorized user on my parent's card) since I didn't have any credit history of my own. Generally, the Chase Sapphire Preferred may not be a good option for a first credit card if you're in a similar situation. If you have a lower credit score, consider first looking at cards for those with no credit, bad credit, or fair or average credit.

What happens if you get rejected?

You will automatically be rejected for this card if any of the below cases apply to you:

  • You currently have a Chase Sapphire Reserve® or Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, regardless of whether you previously received the bonus.
  • You previously had a Chase Sapphire Reserve® or Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and received the bonus within the past 48 months.

If you don't get accepted for the card, issuers and banks are required by federal law to let applicants know why they've been rejected for a line of credit, and you should be informed within 60 days.

It is possible to contest the rejection by calling Chase. If you're a current customer, you could point to your longtime relationship with the issuer and if possible, your history of on-time payments.

You may also be able to sign up for the card by being a current Chase customer, calling the issuer and requesting a product change, although this means you will not be eligible for the welcome bonus.

Bottom line

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is a great choice, especially if you're interested in transferrable travel rewards, with a modest $95 annual fee and the option to redeem points for 25% more through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® travel portal.

Typically, you'll need a credit score of at least 700 in order to be eligible, but the card issuer will look at other factors as well, such as income, how long you've had credit and the number of new personal credit cards you've opened within the past two years.

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Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the Select editorial staff’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any third party.
Plenty of rewards and benefits including 4X points per dollar for dining at restaurants worldwide