Use Chase travel credits before your December statement

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Dan’s Deals posts an excellent reminder for those of us with Chase cards that carry calendar year travel credits: be sure to use up your 2021 travel credits before your December statement cuts.

Baby Yoda Chase Sapphire Reserve

There are several Chase cards to which this concept may apply. The first that come to mind are the Chase Sapphire Reserve and the Chase Ritz-Carlton Visa Infinite. It is possible that this also applies to co-branded cards that come with an annual credit like the Southwest Priority card or the United cards that come with United or IHG credits.

As Dan notes, those who applied for the Chase Sapphire Reserve before 5/21/17 receive an annual $300 travel credit based on calendar year. Those who applied on or after 5/21/17 receive a travel credit based on cardmember year.

Therefore this advice only applies to those who opened their Sapphire Reserve before 5/21/17. If that’s you and you have a calendar-year-based credit, remember that Chase calendar year credits end with your December statement cut date rather than the true end of the calendar year. In other words, if your monthly statement cuts on the 3rd of the month, you’ll need to use your annual travel credit by December 3rd. Charges after your December cut date post on your January statement and therefore count toward the 2022 travel credit.

I believe that the same is true with the Chase Ritz-Carlton card, though truthfully I don’t think I’ve ever pushed it far enough to test that and since that credit is applied manually rather than automatically, I suppose there is a chance that you could reason with a phone agent to process the credit based on the date of the charge rather than the date of your statement.

Keep in mind that Chase has expanded the use of the Sapphire Reserve’s travel credit to be triggered by gas and grocery purchases in 2022. There has been so such accommodation on the Ritz card. Either way, be sure that you use your credit sooner rather than later. Dan shows how to find how much of the Sapphire Reserve’s credit you’ve used.

It is worth noting that this same advice does not apply for Amex cards. Amex airline fee credits are based on calendar date on which the charge posts all the way up to 12/31. But don’t push it that far: I once made a United charge for club passes late on 12/31. Despite immediately getting the passes in the United app (and with a 12/31 expiration date a year later), the charges appeared on my Amex statement dated 1/1. United must have transactions set to batch process overnight and I got burned. You’ve been warned.

H/T: Dan’s Deals

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PSL

Thought the use of gas and grocery spending in lieu of travel was only good to the end of 2021, but you mention 2022. Please clarify as I may downgrade to a Sapphire Preferred after my annual fee hits in February. Thanks.

George

Per the T&C for RC: “Maximum statement credit accumulation for this offer is $300 per calendar year. Annual credit will be issued for the calendar year in which the transaction posts to your account. For example, if you pay baggage fees at the end of 2018, and the airline does not post the transaction until 2019, the cost of the baggage fees will be allocated towards your 2019 calendar year maximum of $300.”

Last edited 8 months ago by George
skdelta

A couple of years ago, I used my Ritz for charges on 12/28 or 12/29 or so (past statement date) and the credit posted on 1/1 using SM — initially it counted against the new year credit, but after a manual review, they fixed it to count against the previous year’s credit.

Lukas

I’ve had the same experience. Charge on 12/23 which was on a January statement and I got the credit on 1/7 when I called in. They made it count (after a review) for the year in which the charge was made.