This card’s benefits, like airport lounge access and food-delivery credits, can be really valuable—if you activate them.
With most credit cards, getting started is a simple process: Open envelope, activate card, insert in wallet.
The Chase Sapphire Reserve isn’t like most credit cards. It’s costly, with an annual fee of $550 a year. For the right spenders, it can pay off big in terms of rewards. And it comes with a number of benefits—from ride-share credits to airport-lounge access to hotel perks—that can be far more valuable than that $550 fee.
Some of those benefits are automatically activated when you open your account; others require enrollment, activation, or other kinds of light work on your part. In many cases the sooner you turn those features on, the more valuable they are.
These are the seven steps to take with that new Reserve card.
1) Sign Up for Priority Pass ($429 per year)
Priority Pass gives members access to private airport lounges around the world. Instead of hanging out in a crowded boarding area, you can retreat to a (generally) quieter, calmer space with complimentary snacks and drinks, free Wi-Fi, and sometimes even amenities like showers, work areas and day beds. To use this benefit, you have to activate it through the Chase Ultimate Rewards site. Since membership cards can take a couple of weeks to arrive in the mail—and your membership gets renewed every year—it’s smart to get it rolling right away.
2) Add it to DoorDash ($180+)
Reserve customers get two benefits with food-delivery service DoorDash: $60 in statement credits for orders for the 2021 calendar year, and a complimentary DashPass subscription for at least 12 months. DashPass (normally $10 a month) gives you $0 delivery fees and reduced service fees for orders over $12 through DoorDash and partner app Caviar. Activate DashPass by making your Reserve card the default payment method in your DoorDash account. When you use it to pay, the credits will be automatically deducted from your statement.
3) Get Rolling with Peloton ($120)
You don’t need to buy a Peloton bike or treadmill to take advantage of the workouts. The Chase Sapphire Preferred card gives you up to $120 back on Peloton Digital Memberships (no equipment necessary) or All-Access Memberships (if you have the company’s gear) through the end of 2021. You also get 10x points for bike and treadmill purchases.
4) Activate Lyft Pink ($240)
Lyft’s membership program, Pink, gives ride-share customers up to 15% off rides, priority airport pickups, and up to three free bike and scooter rides a month. It normally costs about $240 a year, but Reserve customers get it for free for one year—as long as they activate it before March 31, 2022. Enter your card for payment in the app, and you should be prompted to set up Pink. Cardholders also get 10x points on Lyft rides through March 2022.
5) Enroll in Global Entry or TSA PreCheck ($100)
Spend less time in airport lines by signing up for expedited security screening and clearance at U.S. immigration checkpoints. Just use your Chase Sapphire Reserve to pay the fees, and you’ll automatically get a $100 credit on your statement. The credit is good once every four years, so the sooner you use it, the better.
6) Spend on Gas, Groceries and Travel ($300)
Normally, Chase gives Reserve customers a $300 credit on travel purchases; because spending has changed so much during the pandemic, grocery and gas charges count for that credit through Dec. 31, 2021. The credits automatically appear on your statement.
7) Activate Chase Offers (varies)
Chase gives cardholders statement credits on purchases from a constantly-changing roster of brands. Offers can range from $5 off a streaming subscription to hundreds (sometimes thousands) of dollars in credits on travel and jewelry purchases. You have to add the offers before making a purchase to get the credit; log in to your Chase account to see current deals.
The Bottom Line
If you want to maximize the value you get from your Chase Sapphire Reserve, make sure to enroll in or activate the various perks and benefits that come with the card. Also remember that those benefits can change over time—for better or worse.