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The Ritz-Carlton credit card from Chase comes with a $300 travel credit that, under normal conditions, can only be used to offset incidental airline costs like seat selection fees, baggage fees, and lounge memberships (airfares, hotel costs and the like can not be reclaimed). Now, however, with the travel world still at a standstill, that travel credit has been expanded to include spending made at grocery stores and on dining.
Over the past few months, Chase has been working hard to keep its cards relevant by launching spending bonuses for its Sapphire Cards, its Ink Business Cards and its Marriott Bonvoy co-branded credit cards (bonuses which also apply to the Ritz-Carlton Card), but despite Chase also announcing that the Sapphire Reserve Card’s travel credit could be used to offset gas station and grocery store purchases, there has been no mention of any changes to the travel credit offered by the Ritz-Carlton card.
In the past few days, Doctor of Credit had a number readers report that Chase phone agents have been telling them that not only can the Ritz-Carlton Card’s travel credit now be used to offset spending at grocery stores and on dining, but that this has been the case for over a month! As someone who holds the Ritz-Carlton Card (since the beginning of the year) I wanted to know more, so I called the number on the back of my card to see what I could find out. A helpful agent answered my call and after I asked her if she knew of any changes to how the card’s travel credit could be used, it only took a few moments for her to pull up the information I was hoping to hear:
- The $300 travel credit offered by the Ritz-Carlton credit card can now be used to offset spending at restaurants and grocery stores worldwide.
- The card’s travel credit has had this change in place since 1 July 2020
- The credit can be used for spending at restaurants and grocery stores through 31 December 2020.
- Purchases must have posted to the account by 31 December 2020 to be eligible to be offset.
- Ritz-Carlton cardholders have to call in to have any qualifying spending offset just as they would if they were offsetting incidental travel spending under normal conditions.
There were also two questions that I asked and which the agent was not able to answer. These were:
- Do Ritz-Carlton cardholders have to reclaim any grocery or dining spending within 4 billing cycles of the spending date as is the case when reclaiming incidental travel spending?
- Will Chase claw back any points earned from dining if the $300 travel credit is used to offset the cost of that dining? (The Ritz-Carlton credit card is currently earning cardholders 10 points/dollar on dining through 30 September)
Without confirmation from Chase that the travel credit doesn’t have to be used within 4 billing cycles or confirmation that points earned on dining won’t be clawed back, I’m going to be taking a prudent approach and using my travel credit for groceries and reclaiming the spending at the end of the month in which it was made.
The $300 travel credit that comes as part of the Ritz-Carlton credit cards benefits package can now be used to offset spending at restaurants and at grocery stores. This extension to the travel credit is valid for spending made since 1 July and will remain valid on all spending that posts to a cardholder’s account by 31 December 2020.