Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card vs. American Express® Gold Card: A Detailed Comparison

CREDIT CARDS - TRAVEL CREDIT CARDS
With so many great benefits, here are some key differences when deciding which of these cards deserves a place in your wallet.
Updated May 2, 2024
Fact checked
Woman researching credit cards

We receive compensation from the products and services mentioned in this story, but the opinions are the author's own. Compensation may impact where offers appear. We have not included all available products or offers. Learn more about how we make money and our editorial policies.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and American Express® Gold Card are often included on lists of the best travel credit cards, and for good reason. Both cards have incredible welcome offers, cardmember benefits, and redemption options.

But which card is right for you? We’ll unpack some of the most compelling benefits of each card to help you decide for yourself.

In this article

Chase Sapphire Preferred vs. Amex Gold


Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred

American Express® Gold Card

Amex Gold

Annual fee $95 $250 (Terms apply)
Welcome offer Earn 75,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening of account opening Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards points after you spend $6,000 on eligible purchases within the first 6 months of card membership of account opening
Earning rate 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Travel℠; 3X points on dining, select streaming services, and online groceries; 2X points on all other travel purchases, and 1X points on all other purchases 4X Membership Rewards points at U.S. supermarkets (up to $25,000 per year, after that 1X) and at restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., 3X on flights booked directly with airlines or on Amextravel.com, and 1X on all other eligible purchases
Redemption methods
  • Gift cards
  • Statement credits
  • Booking travel through Chase Travel℠
  • Transfer partners
  • Shopping with points
  • Bank deposit
  • Gift cards
  • Statement credits
  • Booking travel through Amex Travel
  • Transfer partners
  • Shopping with points
Annual credits and bonuses
  • $50 in statement credits each account anniversary year for hotel stays purchased through Chase Travel℠
  • A points bonus equal to 10% of your total purchases from the previous year
  • $120 dining credit for certain merchants in the form of $10 statement credit a month (Enrollment required)
  • $120 Uber Cash in the form of $10 Uber Cash a month (Enrollment required)
Travel perks
  • 25% more points value for travel redemption
  • Trip insurance for delays, cancellations, interruptions, and accidents
  • Lost and delayed baggage coverage
  • Rental car collision damage waiver
  • Roadside assistance
  • The Hotel Collection benefits
  • Trip delay insurance
  • Lost and delayed baggage coverage
  • Rental car loss and damage insurance
Other benefits
  • DoorDash membership
  • Instacart membership
  • ShopRunner membership (Enrollment required)
Foreign transaction fee None None
Credit needed Excellent, Good Excellent, Good
Learn more
Learn more

What both cards excel at

There are several similarities between the Chase Sapphire Preferred and Amex Gold cards, including excellent welcome offers.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred offers new cardmembers the chance to earn 75,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months.

With the Amex Gold, on the other hand, you can earn 60,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $6,000 in the first 6 months.

At face value, the points you earn with the Chase Sapphire Preferred are worth $937.50 when redeemed toward travel through the Chase Travel℠ portal.

One of the biggest areas of overlap between these two cards is their rewards structures. For example, both Chase and Amex points can be redeemed in similar ways through their respective rewards portals, but one of the best ways to redeem points is for travel through airline and hotel transfer partners.

Chase transfer partners American Express transfer partners
  • Aer Lingus
  • Air Canada
  • British Airways
  • Emirates
  • Air France-KLM
  • Iberia
  • JetBlue
  • Singapore Airlines
  • Southwest Airlines
  • United Airlines
  • Virgin Atlantic
  • InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG)
  • Marriott
  • Hyatt
  • Aer Lingus
  • AeroMexico
  • Air Canada
  • Air France-KLM
  • Alitalia
  • All Nippon Airways
  • Avianca
  • British Airways
  • Cathay Pacific
  • Delta Air Lines
  • Emirates
  • Etihad Airways
  • Hawaiian Airlines
  • Iberia
  • JetBlue
  • Qantas
  • Singapore Airlines
  • Virgin Atlantic
  • Choice Privileges
  • Hilton Hotels & Resorts
  • Marriott

You’ll notice a fair bit of overlap between transfer partners, but overall, American Express has a greater number of options. Depending on which airlines and hotels you frequent, you may find that one set of partners carries more value than the other.

Additionally, many of the travel insurances and coverages for the Chase Sapphire Preferred and Amex Gold overlap. There’s quite a bit of nuance around terms, uses, and benefits, but overall, the Chase Sapphire Preferred does have more comprehensive travel protections. Just make sure to read the issuer's terms and conditions for each benefit to make sure it works for your needs.


Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred

American Express® Gold Card

Amex Gold

No foreign transaction fees
Purchase protection 1
Extended warranty 2
Trip delay reimbursement 3
Travel accident insurance
Trip cancelation insurance
Trip interruption insurance
Roadside assistance
Car rental collision damage waiver 4
Lost, damaged, or stolen baggage insurance 5
Delayed baggage insurance
Travel assistance services 6

Lastly, both cards offer opportunities for additional savings on purchases through Amex Offers and Chase Offers. Offers come in the form of targeted spend incentives or discounts from a variety of merchants, and typically offer cash back or bonus rewards points after completing a spending requirement. Amex Offers and Chase Offers are great ways to boost your rewards or get extra savings on your purchases. Do note Amex Offers require enrollment.

For a deeper dive into card perks, check out our complete guide to Chase Sapphire Preferred benefits and Amex Gold benefits.

3 important differences between the Chase Sapphire Preferred and Amex Gold

With so many similarities between the two travel credit cards, what are the key differences between the Chase Sapphire Preferred versus Amex Gold?

1. Statement balances and spending limits

The Chase Sapphire Preferred is a traditional credit card, with a preset credit limit and the ability to carry charges and accrue interest. However, this is not the case with the Amex Gold.

Unlike typical credit cards, the Amex Gold allows cardholders to carry a balance for certain charges, but not all. So statement balances can be due in full each month, which means budgeting your cash flow accordingly (though paying balances in full is a best practice regardless of which card you have).

The Amex Gold has no preset spending limit, which gives you greater spending flexibility. The amount you can spend adapts based on factors such as your purchase, payment, and credit history.

So, although the Amex Gold may offer great flexibility, buying power, and short-term cash flow benefits, it comes with the added responsibility of ensuring certain balances are paid on time.

2. Annual credits vs. partner benefits

The Amex Gold wins the credits category with the fact that you can get up to $120 in dining credits each year, as well as up to an additional $120 in Uber Cash each year. 

Redeeming the dining credit is straightforward: Cardmembers can earn up to $10 in monthly statement credits at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar, and participating Shake Shack locations. Frankly, if you live near any one of these restaurants, taking advantage of this monthly dining credit is a piece of (cheese)cake. Plus, it’s a great excuse for date night. Enrollment is required for select benefits such as the dining credit.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred offers up to $50 in annual statement credits for hotel stays booked through Chase Travel℠ and an annual points bonus equal to 10% of your previous year's total purchases. It also has two unique benefits:

Earning 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Travel℠ is a huge standout benefit, as it is the highest spend category between these two cards.

Check out our full Chase Sapphire Preferred review.

3. Rewards for spending

Overall, the Amex Gold appears like it has greater returns on regular spending, but it depends on your lifestyle and spending habits. Here's how a few common bonus categories break down:

Spend category Chase Sapphire Preferred Amex Gold
Restaurants 3X points per $1 4X points per $1
Travel 5X points per $1 on travel purchased through Chase Travel℠ 3X points per $1 on flights booked directly with airlines or on Amextravel.com
U.S. supermarkets 1X points per $1 4X points per $1, up to $25,000 in purchases per calendar year

However, keep in mind that both cards have more bonus categories than what's listed in this table. Overall, both cards can help you get enough value to justify their annual fees, thanks to their elevated rewards rates.

Check out our full American Express Gold Card review.

FAQs

Which is better, the Chase Sapphire Preferred or the Amex Gold Card?

The better card between the Chase Sapphire Preferred and the Amex Gold Card is the one that best suits your needs. If you want a card with a high earning potential for dining and groceries, as well as monthly Uber Cash and dining credits, consider the Amex Gold Card. Keep in mind that enrollment is required for select benefits. If you want a lower annual fee and 25% more value from travel redemptions through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, consider the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

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

The Chase Sapphire Preferred typically requires good or excellent credit to be eligible. Good credit scores start at 670, according to the FICO scoring model. Keep in mind that having a certain credit score doesn't guarantee =qualifying. Credit card issuers, including Chase, typically consider various factors in addition to your credit score and credit history when you submit an application.  

What credit score do you need for the Amex Gold?

You typically need good or excellent credit to qualify for the Amex Gold. A good credit score is a score at 670 or higher, according to the FICO scoring model. Remember that your credit score is not the only thing that matters for approval. When you apply for a credit card, American Express and other issuers also look at other factors besides your credit score and credit history.

Is the Amex Gold worth the annual fee?

The Amex Gold is likely worth the $250 annual fee (terms apply) because you can offset most of the cost with Amex Gold benefits such as the card’s annual credits. This includes up to $120 a year in Uber Cash, which works for both Uber rides and Uber Eats orders, and up to $120 a year in dining credit at participating partners. Enrollment is required for select benefits. Add in the Amex Membership Rewards points you can earn on everyday purchases and you should more than offset the annual fee.

Which card is right for you?

Choosing between the Chase Sapphire Preferred versus Amex Gold comes down to the value you place on their respective benefits, rewards, and transfer partners.

The American Express Gold Card

Earning 4X points with the Amex Gold at restaurants and U.S. supermarkets is excellent — and let’s face it, we all have to eat. If you’re shell shocked over the $250 annual fee, consider how much value you’ll get out of the dining credits. If you dine out frequently and can put that benefit to use, then the Amex Gold might not feel as expensive to you.

When it comes to redeeming rewards, American Express also has nearly twice as many transfer partners as Chase. Although more doesn’t always mean better, it’s important to know which transfer partners you value most. This will vary depending on your travel habits.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

The Chase Sapphire Preferred card offers a great welcome offer, especially when you consider the 25% in extra value when redeeming points for airfare, hotels, or rental cars through the Chase Travel portal. Despite earning only 3X points at restaurants versus 4X points with the Amex Gold, Chase points can go a little bit further when redeemed through the Chase Travel portal.

Overall, if you’re a frequent traveler who dines out regularly and can make use of the dining credits and Uber Cash, the American Express Gold Card might suit your needs better than the Chase Sapphire Preferred. If not, the Chase Sapphire Preferred could be a safer choice with a lower annual fee and fewer credits to worry about.

Great for Flexible Travel Rewards

4.9

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Current Offer

Earn 75,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening

Annual Fee

$95

Rewards Rate

5X points on travel purchased through Chase Travel℠; 3X points on dining, select streaming services, and online groceries; 2X points on all other travel purchases, and 1X points on all other purchases

Benefits and Drawbacks
Card Details

Author Details

Kevin Dukes Kevin is a Los Angeles-based businessman, content creator, and life hacker. He credits much of his business success to an obsession with deal and travel hacking that puts extreme couponers to shame. Not only an expert in points, miles, credit cards, and travel rewards, Kevin is also well known in the lease hacking community for his deals on luxury and sports cars.

His work can be seen on his website, TheFlightBrothers.net, or at Leasehackr.com, where he is a moderator. The next time you’re driving around LA, you might even catch him playing “Instagram Husband” for his wife’s million followers.

Want to learn how to make an extra $200?

Get proven ways to earn extra cash from your phone, computer, & more with Extra.

You will receive emails from FinanceBuzz.com. Unsubscribe at any time. Privacy Policy

  • Vetted side hustles
  • Exclusive offers to save money daily
  • Expert tips to help manage and escape debt