A New Best Premium Rewards Card Comes July 17 (Very Few of You Will Ever Get It)

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I do not have referral links for the JP Morgan Reserve or Palladium cards. Information about these products is neither provided nor reviewed by their issuer.

The J.P. Morgan Reserve Card is essentially a heavier, shiny metal version of the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card. It’s intended for customers of J.P. Morgan Private Bank (although briefly late last summer there were other avenues to apply for it).

J.P. Morgan Private Bank used to be open to individuals with investable assets of $5 million or more, but they now focus on client relationships of $10 million or more (which already represented 90% of their customers).

Chase Private Client, the banking relationship intended for the ‘mass affluent’ and targeting customers with $250,000 or more to deposit (although there’s no such formal minimum to actually open the account) used to offer customers a similar metal card, the J.P. Morgan Palladium card.

For a $595 annual fee, Palladium offered:

  • United Club membership and Priority Pass Select with complimentary guest
  • One year of GHA Hotels Black status
  • What was once a highly regarded concierge service but that has apparently experienced slippage
  • 35,000 bonus points after $100,000 spend each year.
  • Double points on travel
  • A hidden trade line meaning it doesn’t report each month to the cardmember’s credit (use of credit line doesn’t increase utilization ratio and reduce credit score)

The Palladium card has been discontinued for new customers, and Chase Private Clients are being directed to the Chase Sapphire Reserve card which has a lower ($450) annual fee, earns triple points on travel and dining and comes with a $300 travel credit. Of course while heavier than the average card isn’t nearly as heavy as Palladium.

Indeed, the Palladium card comes with the cardmember name and card numbers engraved into the metal on the front, and the cardmember’s signature engraved on the back. (Customers submitted a signature card to Chase prior to card production.)

I’ve heard – and written – that Palladium card cardholders would be transitioned to the J.P. Morgan Reserve card. It doesn’t have the engraved signature on the back, and doesn’t offer GHA Hotels elite status or 35,000 bonus points after $100,000 spend.

While previously it was reportedly possible to convert a Palladium card to J.P. Morgan Reserve, multiple readers are reporting that Palladium cards will be convert in mass on July 17.

  • Cardmembers will still use their existing metal Palladium cards until those cards need to be replaced.

  • They will receive a $145 refund to reflect the new card’s lower annual fee.

  • If they’ve spent $75,000 on the card from the beginning of their cardmember year through July 16, they’ll receive a one-time 35,000 bonus points.

Here’s the thing. Existing Palladium cardholders who have requested the unpublished benefit of United Club membership (which runs $450 to $550 per year depending on your status in the MileagePlus program) will keep this benefit with their new J.P. Morgan Reserve card.

That means come July 17, the best rewards card on the planet rolls out for a group of customers. Legacy JP Morgan Palladium cardholders with United Club memberships will essentially have a heavier metal Sapphire Reserve card with United Club membership at no extra cost. That has to be the best rewards card on the planet, and the best for the money.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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Editorial note: any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer. Comments made in response to this post are not provided or commissioned nor have they been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any bank. It is not the responsibility of any advertiser to ensure that questions are answered, either. Terms and limitations apply to all offers.

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Comments

  1. I believe the JPR also has the $100 discount on domestic flights when purchased for two or more people

  2. I highly disagree with this card being the “best” card out there. Solid card sure but not the best. CSR is definitely a better value with the $300 travel credit plus higher earning potential. I do not value United club membership anywhere near what UA is asking as those lounges provide very little benefit other than IRROPs service — that is becoming less and less relevant as airlines continue to improve self-rebooking features on their mobile apps.

    The irony behind the last argument is the reason why I value AA lounge membership more than UA/DL — AA is terrible in this area that I need to depend on lounge agents more to provide this service.

  3. @golfing – @gary clearly said it’s the best for those who already have the card and who have already requested the undocumented benefit of UA Club membership. Let’s realistically think about just who those people are and how many of them there are…

  4. Golfingboy – The JPR comes w all the same benefits that come w the Sapphire Reserve but adds United club membership. That’s why the card is superior vs the Sapphire version.

  5. Indirectly related – what’s the obsession with “metal cards”? I hear people gushing about metal cards on all the blogs. I get that there is an initial “wow factor”, but once you get over that – I don’t get how heavier (and thicker?) is a benefit…especially in the MS world most of these blogs are directed at where readers are already dealing with fat stacks of credit cards and heavy/fat wallets lugging multiple cards around to begin with.

    Generally when I’m confused it’s because I’m missing something so I’m not posing the question as a thinly-veiled jab, I really want to know – Is there something I’m missing?

  6. I concur this is my “go to” card particularly with the 3x Chase UR bonus for travel and dining spend. The annual fee is essentially $150 after applying travel credits which is easily justified by the UC and PP lounge memberships. And yes, my UC and PP memberships automatically renewed right after I received my new JPM-R card to replace the JPM Pd card (also confirmed by telephone CSR).

    Let’s not forget the other benefits which include emergency worldwide medivac coverage which is not included on most cost (including CSP) and can easily run $75-100 per trip if purchased on an individual trip basis. Have already cashed in for the $100 GE renewal fee (when you have 4 family members you need >1 card with this perk) and VISA warranty coverage for 3 broken fitbits @$100 a pop. So I make money on this card even before you add the substantial value of Chase UR points.

    The metal card is a nice conversation piece but in some ways more problematic as it sets off airport and sporting event metal detectors and you can’t feed it into machines (where occasionally it gets eaten). So I now travel with my CSR card, at least until I cancel it.

  7. BORAXO —

    There is a plastic version of the JPM Reserve that we use — no need to draw unwanted attention to your card — esp. now that people can take pics of it when it is our of your possession and thus steal the card number, believing that you have high credit card bills.
    @Alex — as noted above by another, you are wrong, no $100 companion discount on the card when used for airfare for 2.

    njupintheair

  8. In addition to the UC membership, JPR also includes a Priority Pass membership that includes unlimited guesting privileges. Otherwise from my experience the exact same benefits and fees as the CSR.

  9. Ahh – for some reason I did not capture that this card comes with all of the benefits of the Sapphire Reserve. Thanks for clarifying!

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