The Sapphire Reserve is Chase’s premium credit card that has an annual fee of $550. In normal times, they don’t discount this annual fee at all. However, these days are anything but normal, and reports are coming in that many cardholders are getting a retention credit on their annual fee.
The coronavirus pandemic has drastically changed people’s spending behavior. Gone are the days of big money being spent on travel (airfare, hotels), restaurants, and gas stations.
With consumers hunkered down at home, they’re spending more money on streaming services, groceries, and food delivery services like Uber Eats and DoorDash instead.
Credit card companies are adopting to this “new normal” by offering temporary benefits that provide value to their customers. American Express has added monthly statement credits for things like streaming service and wireless purchases. Chase has also added a ton of new benefits to their premium cards.
Chase Sapphire Annual Fee Reduction
It’s important to note that many cardholders are already getting $100 off of that annual fee upon their next renewal.
Any Chase Sapphire Reserve cardholders whose annual fee falls between April 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020 will see an automatic reduction of their annual fee by $100, from $550 to $450. Here’s a blurb on this announcement:
We recognize this is a difficult time for everyone. As a way to help, we’re providing you a one-time $100 statement credit toward the 2020 $550 annual fee on your Reserve credit card. On an upcoming billing statement (based on your renewal date), you’ll see a $550 charge for the annual fee, followed by a $100 statement credit. We will continue to bill the $550 annual fee in 2021.
Chase Sapphire Retention Credit
Reports are coming in that if you call the customer service phone number (1-800-436-7970) and mention that you’re thinking of canceling or downgrading your card, you may be offered a retention credit of $150 to $250 to remain a Sapphire Reserve customer.
The Chase customer service representatives mentioned that this is a new option showing up on their systems whereas before they had no power or capability to extend offers like this to cardholders.
While most people calling are receiving retention credits, not everyone is. We don’t have enough data to understand why, but how long you’ve been a customer and how much you’ve spent may be a determining factor.
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The Bottom Line
If you’re thinking of closing your Sapphire Reserve card to avoid the annual fee, then I’d recommend for you to call first and see if you’re able to get a retention offer to mitigate some of the annual fee cost.
With the $100 annual fee credit that was previously announced along with this retention credit of $150-$250, it’s a no-brainer to keep the card. Your total annual fee is now $200 to $300 depending on the retention amount offered.
Combined with the fact that the card provides a $300 travel/grocery credit, you could potentially pay nothing to have the card for another year OR make money for doing so.
Have you called Chase yet? What was the result?