Chase Sapphire Offering Bonus Points On Groceries

Filed Under: Chase, Credit Cards
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Given how much consumer behavior has changed in the past few months, many of the credit card benefits that members used to appreciate most aren’t as valuable anymore. We’ve seen card issuers get creative with temporary perks, to give members an incentive to keep their cards.

We’ve seen Chase roll out several limited time perks on both the Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card (review) and Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card (review), and we’re now seeing yet another new bonus category.

Earn 2-3x points at grocery stores

Chase Sapphire cards will offer bonus points on grocery store purchases between November 1, 2020, and April 30, 2021, for up to $1,000 worth of spending per month. Specifically:

This complements the cards offering bonus points on dining and travel at the same rates with no limits.

I value Ultimate Rewards points at 1.7 cents each, so to me that’s like a 3.4-5.1% return on grocery store spending, depending on the card. This makes both of these very well rounded cards, though there are other cards also offering great bonuses on grocery store purchases.

Here’s how Chase defines the grocery store category:

Merchants in the grocery stores category include supermarkets, merchants that offer a full service grocery line of merchandise including a deli and bakery as well as smaller grocery stores. Some merchants that sell grocery items are not included in this category; for example, larger stores that sell a wide variety of goods and groceries, such as warehouse clubs, discount stores and some smaller merchants such as drugstores, and merchants that specialize in only a few grocery items. Purchases made at gas stations from merchants who also operate grocery stores are not included in this category. Delivery service merchants will be included if they classify as a grocery store merchant.

There’s no registration required to take advantage of this perk.

More flexibility with $300 annual travel credit

The Chase Sapphire Reserve offers a $300 annual travel credit, though understandably that’s not as valuable as it used to be, in light of circumstances.

Through June 30, 2021, Chase Sapphire Reserve cardmembers can use their $300 annual travel credit towards gas and grocery purchases as well. This was first announced back in May, but at the time this added flexibility was only valid through the end of December, meaning that it has now been extended by a further six months.

Just a few weeks ago Chase announced that it was extending and expanding its “Pay Yourself Back” feature, whereby card members can redeem points for 1.25-1.5 cents each towards grocery, dining, and home improvement store purchases.

Bottom line

It’s fantastic to see the continued limited perks on the Chase Sapphire Reserve and Chase Sapphire Preferred. While these have historically been travel rewards cards, Chase is doing a great job keeping these cards relevant.

What do you make of the Chase Sapphire offering bonus points on groceries?

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  1. Guess this will require another round of number crunching to see how the Amex Gold’s 4x compares to this new 3x on the CSR.
    The travel credit applying to groceries is a little annoying as you don’t earn UR on that spend.
    Least for myself, a downgrade of the CSR to the CSP to keep my UR is sounding like a better option every day.

  2. @Jinxed_K – According to their website starting in Nov 1 that you will get 3X points on Supermarkets and get it counted towards the $300 spend. It just says only the travel purchases will not qualify for the 3X until after the $300 spend. Maybe I am reading that wrong?

    There are more ways to earn your annual $300 Travel Credit. Through June 30, 2021, gas station and grocery store purchases will count toward earning your Travel Credit. You’ll also earn points on these purchases. And, as always, after your first $300 in travel purchases, you’ll immediately start earning 3x points on travel. All with your Sapphire Reserve card.

  3. Don’t forget, the Chase Freedom Unlimited card has 5x points at grocery stores. Maybe that’s only if you got the card recently through a promotion (I’m not sure), but I’m gladly using my Freedom Unlimited card at the grocery store at the moment over my Chase Reserve.

  4. Nice to see this bonus, i still buy grocery gift cards at Staples for 5X on my chase business card so i essentially get 5x on grocery but this is good for most people who dont have an Ink or like to stop at staples before buying groceries.

  5. @Kevin
    Teaches me not to assume things, figured it would be the same as the credit for travel use.
    Sounds like you’re right and we’ll earn points as well as count towards the credit… but this is also a little confusing as well.
    If I’m reading this part right, even if we redeem the $300 of travel credit via Grocery spend, the first $300 of travel category spend won’t earn UR?

    ‘Annually, the first $300 in travel purchases will not earn rewards points, regardless of whether the Annual Credit was earned on purchases for Travel, or for promotional offers on other categories, for example at Gas Stations, or Grocery Stores.’

  6. This is good, I’ve been waiting for something like this. My AF posts next month, and this, combined with the fee at $450 and the $60 Doordash credit is enough for me to keep the card. I was considering Amex Gold but I’ll hold off until I think planning a long international trip is feasible.

  7. “Delivery service merchants will be included if they classify as a grocery store merchant.” – do we think this will include instacart?

  8. I was waiting for this, figured someone would do it. Suspect dining spending is still way down.

  9. Ben, what do you think about the annual fee structure for the CSR? About to refer my wife (current CSR holder) to the 80k points of the CSP and have her apply for AMEX Green.

  10. I don’t know why anyone would keep CSR right now. They’re offering 5% for a year at grocery, 3% restaurant & 3% pharmacy on Chase’s new NO FEE Freedom Flex.

    Yes, CSR includes 3% travel & free PP lounge visits, but most of us won’t be doing any significant traveling again until 2022.

    I thought for sure CSR would bring restaurants to 5% to match Prestige and also try to justify why we should hang on to a $450 AF card. Since their no AF Flex card is also offering 5% at groceries, why not also add that? Even with those two increases, I’m not sure the costs justifiy keeping CSR, but I bet most of us would.

  11. Keep in mind that those applying for a new MasterCard Chase Freedom Flex Card (and not just switching from an old Freedom Card (Visa) 5 points per dollar at grocery stores up to $12,000 for the first year of card membership.

  12. Too late for me (sort of). My renewal for CSR was September. At that time the previous grocery offer counting toward the $300 travel credit was expiring, with no hope of it coming back. I have no significant travel plans. Meanwhile, my Chase Freedom has same/better points categories. To top it off, most of our grocery shopping is through Amazon Fresh, and last time I checked it did not code as Grocery, so I lost some bonus from that. I downgraded CSR to CSP and am not looking back, at least until the pandemic is over. Most of my spend now is on Chase Freedom Unlimited in any event.

  13. My guess is the Ritz card will also have the grocery credit extension, though they might not announce it until after 11/1.

  14. It seems Chase needs to expand the benefits on the CSR or many will not renew in 2021. Myself included.

  15. Just hit 4 years with CSP, so downgraded to Unlimited and 1 week later applied for CSP and qualified for the 80k bonus. Wife has CSR-I like that I can transfer the 80k from CSP to the CSR and I could use it on $1200 in groceries with the ‘pay yourself back’ feature since I don’t plan on traveling for awhile. Keeps CSR very relevant for me as that feature is worth $200 more than CSP.

  16. It’s great they are offering this again, since the CSR is the only “premium” card in my wallet. All ,y work travel has to be booked on a company card, and there hasn’t been any of that nor personal travel for many months.

    For those asking about the big box stores and others, It’s easy to check on your past purchases on the app.

    Target codes as “shopping”

  17. I am living in Europe so I will charge at a grocery store and see how it is categorized. I will report back.

  18. I have CSP, and keep it for auto rental insurance and to have a Visa at Costco. I use Amex Gold for grocery, and even if I max that card BBC also gives 2% everywhere.

  19. Based on my Visa Costco statements I am spending about $1,000/month there for solid 2% return on everything and 4% on gas. Do they categorize Costco as grocery? My regular supermarket spending is way down. The question is what to do with SPR points? With no business travel and no business dinners to charge through SPR the card makes little sense for me right now.

  20. I’m late coming to this post, so I hope this will be answered! You said:

    “Through June 30, 2021, Chase Sapphire Reserve cardmembers can use their $300 annual travel credit towards gas and grocery purchases as well.”

    Does this mean that anytime you use your CSR for gas and groceries until end of June 2021, it will go toward your $300 bonus and will be credited back to you? How does that work with the 3x’s points you are receiving for using the CSR for groceries through the end of April? I thought that you didn’t earn points for those purchases that you are receiving the travel credit for??

    Am I misunderstanding something?

  21. Got 3x points on my Sapphire for buying groceries in Switzerland so it does work outside the US.

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