The Best Credit Card Sign-Up Bonus September 2014: Chase Sapphire Preferred

Chase Sapphire Preferred Sign-Up 40,000 Points Bonus

Overview
There are two ways to get points on credit cards: the first is to spend as you normally do, and the second is to obtain bonus points by making a set amount of purchases within a certain time frame. The latter is most often more lucrative as credit cared companies will entice customers with large amounts of cash back in exchange for the customer to sign up for the card. As I am a major component of responsible credit card spending, I see these offers as a great opportunity to receive bonus points that can applied to travel, cash back, and even statement credit in some cases.

Chase Sapphire Preferred
In this post I am going to go over the Sapphire Preferred Card that is offered by Chase, and the associated sign up bonus. This is one of the best cards out there due to its large sign-up bonus, flexibility of the Ultimate Rewards program, and the face that the card is a Visa Signature Card, which can be used almost anywhere throughout the world. In addition, one of the perks of the card is that it does not have foreign transaction fees.

Bonus 
As of the time of this writing, the readily available bonus for the card, which can be seen below, is 40,000 points after $3,000 of spending in the three months after opening the card. This is easily obtainable by focusing your spending on this card. In addition, there are various ways to “Manufacture Spend” and hit this goal without any financial outlay. A quick google search will yield plenty of results on this topic. When these points are used for travel on the Ultimate Rewards website, they have a cash value of $500. Additionally, these points can be taken as cash back, with 1 cent equal to 1 ultimate reward point, which would result in $400 in cash back.

Ultimate Reward Flexibility
Overall, one of the largest benefits of the Ultimate Rewards program is the ability to transfer points to Hotel and Airline partners. These include United, Hyatt, Marriot, and many other useful travel options. This means that you can take advantage of these programs to get the most out of your Ultimate Rewards points, as this offers tons of flexibility when it comes to redemption.

In my case, I was recently able to book a stay for an upcoming wedding that I will be attending in September at a Hyatt property. The hotel would have gone for $229 a night, but I was able to book the room with 8,000 ultimate rewards points, which resulted in a value of almost 3 cents a point! By utilizing this rate for the bonus on initial sign-up, you can see just how much the 40,000 points could potentially be worth.

First year fee waived
An additional bonus of the card is that the annual fee is waived in the first year, which would be $95. This essentially makes signing up for the card a no-brainer. When the end of the promotion period comes, you can decide to keep the card and continue to receive the great benefits that come with it, or you can simply downgrade to the no-fee Chase Sapphire card or even the Chase Freedom Card.

Conclusion
Overall, based on the flexibility of reward points, high amount of bonus, waived fee in the first year and relatively obtainable minimum spending amount required to receive the bonus, the Chase Sapphire Preferred card is a great candidate for the credit card with the best sign-up bonus at this time.

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