The Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card (Rates and fees) has a $0 annual fee, everyday earning potential, and an intro APR offer. But the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is one of the most popular travel cards available because of its low $95 annual fee and 25% bonus to travel redemptions.
So how do you choose?
In this Wells Fargo Autograph vs. Chase Sapphire Preferred review, we compare the benefits and features of both cards to see which one might offer better value. It’s likely that either product could make sense depending on your goals and preferences.
Wells Fargo Autograph vs. Chase Sapphire Preferred
The Wells Fargo Autograph is considered a travel card because it offers points when you make eligible purchases. But it could also be considered a cashback card since using your points for cash redemptions offers the same value as travel redemptions.
Notable Wells Fargo Autograph benefits include:
- Common bonus categories
- An intro APR offer
- Cell phone protection
The Chase Sapphire Preferred is largely considered to be one of the best travel credit cards available. It has a low annual fee compared to many other travel cards,
Notable Chase Sapphire Preferred benefits include:
- Point transfers to travel partners
- A 25% bonus to travel redemptions
- Robust travel and purchase coverages
Check out this table for a quick comparison of the primary perks and benefits on both cards.
|Card type||Travel/Cash back||Travel|
|Credit card issuer||Wells Fargo||Chase|
|Credit card network||Visa||Visa|
|Welcome bonus||Earn 30,000 bonus points after spending $1,500 in purchases in the first 3 months - that's a $300 cash redemption value||Earn 60,000 points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months|
|Earning rate||Earn unlimited 3X points on restaurants, travel, gas stations, transit, popular streaming services and phone plans. Plus earn 1X points on other purchases||5X points on Lyft rides and travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards; 3X points on eligible dining, select streaming services, and online grocery purchases; 2X points on travel; and 1X points per $1 on all other eligible purchases|
|Intro APR||0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months from account opening, and then a 17.24%, 22.24%, or 27.24% variable||None|
|Foreign transaction fee||None||None|
|Credit needed||Excellent, Good||Excellent, Good|
|Apply Now||Learn How to Apply|
What both cards excel at
The Wells Fargo Autograph and Chase Sapphire Preferred are different cards, but they share a few overlapping features and benefits.
- Valuable welcome offers: The terms are different for the sign-up bonuses on each card, but the end result of providing value is the same. The Autograph offers 30,000 bonus points after spending $1,500 in the 3 months. The Sapphire Preferred offers 60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months.
- Everyday earning: Both cards offer multiple categories for earning bonus points. Even better, many of these categories align with common expenses such as gas or dining — making it easier to earn points on purchases you’re likely already making.
- Multiple redemption options: Shared redemption options between both cards include travel, cash redemptions, gift cards, pay with points or rewards, and merchandise.
- Travel benefits: Similar travel benefits include auto rental collision damage waivers, access to travel and emergency assistance services, and no foreign transaction fees.
- Visa Signature benefits: Both cards provide Visa Signature benefits in the form of 24/7 access to Visa Signature Concierge services and access to exclusive Luxury Hotel Collection benefits.
- Visa payment network: Both cards work on the Visa payment network, which functions in over 200 countries and territories worldwide. This is useful for travelers who visit international destinations.
8 important differences between Wells Fargo Autograph and Chase Sapphire Preferred
Compare the differences between the Wells Fargo Autograph and Chase Sapphire Preferred to learn which option might make the most sense for you.
1. Annual fee
Many rewards cards have annual fees to help offset the costs associated with providing certain benefits. But it’s also possible to have a rewards card that offers helpful benefits and doesn’t charge an annual fee.
The Wells Fargo Autograph has a $0 annual fee while the Chase Sapphire Preferred has a $95 annual fee.
In terms of which card costs less to keep year after year, the Autograph is the clear winner. This doesn’t necessarily mean it offers more benefits than the Sapphire Preferred, but you won’t have to worry about an annual cost.
Check out our Wells Fargo Autograph Card review to learn more.
2. Bonus categories
Whether you get value out of a card’s bonus categories is highly dependent on your typical spending habits.
The Wells Fargo Autograph allows you to earn unlimited 3x points on restaurants, travel, gas stations, transit, popular streaming services and phone plans. plus earn 1x points on other purchases.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred offers 5X points on Lyft rides and travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards; 3X points on eligible dining, select streaming services, and online grocery purchases; 2X points on travel; and 1X points per $1 on all other eligible purchases.
Both cards offer points for eligible purchases in multiple categories that align with everyday purchases. But the Autograph may be the better option in most cases since it offers bonus points for commonly used spending categories.
3. Redemption value
Earning points could be helpful if you’re able to redeem your rewards how you want. Fortunately, both of these products offer a variety of redemption options, though the Chase Sapphire Preferred has a perk that could offer you more value.
The Wells Fargo Autograph typically offers the same redemption value (1 cent per point) regardless of which option you choose. You could choose a cash or travel redemption and the actual value would be the same.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred generally follows the same guidelines of offering around 1 cent per point for its redemptions. But travel redemptions made through Chase or the Pay Yourself Back program receive a 25% boost, resulting in a value of 1.25 cents per point.
Receiving 25% more value from your points is a significant increase if the redemption options align with your preferences.
Read our Chase Sapphire Preferred review for more details.
4. Transfer partners
Many travel credit cards offer opportunities to transfer your points or miles to hotel or airline loyalty programs that partner with the card issuer. This type of redemption option could open up creative ways to redeem your rewards directly with a hotel chain or major airline.
The Wells Fargo Autograph participates in the Wells Fargo Rewards program, which doesn’t offer transfers to travel partners. The Chase Sapphire Preferred is part of Chase Ultimate Rewards and offers transfers to over a dozen transfer partners. This includes programs such as United MileagePlus, Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards, and World of Hyatt.
For flexible travel redemptions, the Chase Sapphire Preferred might make more sense than the Wells Fargo Autograph.
5. Intro APR offer
Introductory APR offers aren’t commonly found on travel credit cards, which is the case with the Chase Sapphire Preferred. But the Wells Fargo Autograph offers 0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months from account opening, and then a 17.24%, 22.24%, or 27.24% variable.
This could be useful if you have upcoming large purchases and want to avoid paying interest on your balance for a while. Since the Sapphire Preferred has no intro APR offers, the Autograph comes out on top.
6. Travel insurance
Travel insurance could come in handy for different scenarios that are typically out of your control. This could include having to cancel or interrupt your planned trip or having your baggage delayed.
Both the Wells Fargo Autograph and Chase Sapphire Preferred offer car rental insurance, but that’s about where the travel insurance benefits end on the Autograph.
The Sapphire Preferred also offers trip cancellation or interruption insurance, baggage delay insurance, lost luggage reimbursement, and trip delay reimbursement. For frequent travelers, having a card such as the Sapphire Preferred could prove invaluable.
7. Purchase and warranty protections
What happens if you drop and break your new cell phone or other expensive electronic device? What if it happens right after the manufacturer’s warranty runs out? Many credit cards offer different types of protections to help keep money in your pocket in these and similar situations as long as you purchased the item with your credit card.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred card offers purchase protection and extended warranty protection that typically covers many types of purchases. The Wells Fargo Autograph card doesn’t have these coverage options, but it does offer cell phone protection.
The better card in this scenario depends on your preferences. Having either of these cards and the protections they provide could be useful.
8. Additional benefits
Apart from the benefits we’ve already discussed, the Wells Fargo Autograph doesn’t offer many additional perks. But with the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you can take advantage of these benefits:
- $50 annual hotel credit through Chase Ultimate Rewards
- $10 monthly Gopuff credit through Dec. 31, 2023
- Complimentary DashPass from DoorDash
- 6 months free of Instacart+
- 10% anniversary point bonus
The value of these benefits depends on whether you use them. But in terms of overall benefits, the Sapphire Preferred likely rises above the Autograph.
Which card should you choose?
You should typically choose the card that most aligns with your spending habits, personal finance goals, and preferences. For this Wells Fargo Autograph vs. Chase Sapphire Preferred comparison, consider these scenarios where one card might prove more useful than the other:
You might choose the Wells Fargo Autograph if:
- You want to avoid an annual fee.
- Your everyday expenses align with its bonus categories.
- You want an intro APR offer.
- You want cell phone protection.
You might choose the Chase Sapphire Preferred if:
- You want flexible and potentially more valuable travel rewards.
- You want increased travel coverage.
- You want additional benefits such as credits and free memberships.
- You want purchase and extended warranty protections.
Which is better, the Wells Fargo Autograph or the Chase Sapphire Preferred?
The better credit card between the Wells Fargo Autograph and Chase Sapphire Preferred depends on your spending habits and preferences. The Wells Fargo Autograph has a $0 annual fee and offers excellent earning potential on many everyday expenses. The Chase Sapphire Preferred has a $95 annual fee, but it offers flexible travel redemptions, including transfers to over a dozen travel partners.
What credit score do you need to get the Wells Fargo Autograph?
You typically need a good or excellent credit score to get the Wells Fargo Autograph Card. This is at least a 670 according to the FICO scoring model, though a score of 700 or higher would likely improve your approval odds.
Does the Chase Sapphire Preferred get you lounge access?
The Chase Sapphire Preferred doesn’t get you lounge access. For airport lounge access, consider the Chase Sapphire Reserve®. This card provides complimentary access to the Priority Pass network of over 1,300 airport lounges, restaurants, and experiences. Lounge benefits often include free food, drinks, and Wi-Fi.
The Autograph could be a better option for everyday earning potential because of its common bonus categories and $0 annual fee. But the Sapphire Preferred might make sense for its access to travel partners and 25% bonus to travel redemptions.
For more top credit card offers, use our dedicated page to compare credit cards and find the right option for you.
Earn 30,000 bonus points after spending $1,500 in purchases in the first 3 months - that's a $300 cash redemption value
Earn unlimited 3X points on restaurants, travel, gas stations, transit, popular streaming services and phone plans. Plus earn 1X points on other purchases
- Earn 30,000 bonus points after spending $1,500 in purchases in the first 3 months - that's a $300 cash redemption value
- Earn unlimited 3X points on restaurants, travel, gas stations, transit, popular streaming services and phone plans. Plus earn 1X points on other purchases
- Intro APR on purchases
- $0 annual fee
- No intro APR on balance transfers
- Earn 30,000 bonus points when you spend $1,500 in purchases in the first 3 months - that's a $300 cash redemption value
- Earn unlimited 3X points on the things that really add up - like restaurants, travel, gas stations, transit, popular streaming services, and phone plans. Plus, earn 1X points on other purchases
- $0 annual fee
- 0% intro APR for 12 months from account opening on purchases. 17.24%, 22.24%, or 27.24% variable APR thereafter
- Get up to $600 of cell phone protection against damage or theft when you pay your monthly cell phone bill with your eligible Wells Fargo card. (subject to a $25 deductible).
- Redeem your rewards points for travel, gift cards, or statement credits. Or shop at millions of online stores and redeem your rewards when you check out with PayPal.
- Enjoy a premium collection of benefits at a selection of the world's most intriguing and prestigious hotel properties with Visa Signature Concierge.
- Select "Apply Now" to learn more about the product features, terms and conditions.