*Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.
This article was last updated Aug 29, 2019. Terms and conditions may have changed. For the most accurate information, please consult the issuer website.
If your flight is delayed, and you hold a select travel credit card from Chase Bank, there’s a good chance you can get reimbursed for a hotel room, cab fare to a hotel or meals, and more, thanks to flight delay coverage.
Two cards that can step in to help are Chase’s flagship Sapphire cards, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® and the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card. In addition, some co-branded travel cards issued by Chase – such as the Marriott Bonvoy cards – also carry the perk. But like any coverage, there are steps you should take to make sure your claim is valid. Terms apply to Chase credit card offers. See chase.com for more information.
Here are some Chase cards that have trip delay coverage:
|Card||Delay Time||Max Coverage||Annual Fee|
|Chase Sapphire Reserve®||6 hours or overnight||$500 per ticket||$550|
|Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card||12 hours or overnight||$500 per ticket||$95|
|Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card||12 hours or overnight||$500 per ticket||$95|
|Marriott Bonvoy Bold® Credit Card||12 hours or overnight||$500 per ticket||$0|
|United℠ Explorer Card||12 hours or overnight||$500 per ticket||$0 intro for the first year, then $95|
|United℠ Explorer Business Card||12 hours or overnight||$500 per ticket||$95|
|United Club℠ Card||12 hours or overnight||$500 per ticket||$450|
|World of Hyatt Credit Card||12 hours or overnight||$500 per ticket||$95|
How you book matters
The first step is to pay for your flight the right way.
In order to be eligible for trip delay protection through a credit card, you must pay for your flights with the card from the start. Simply being a card member and booking your flights with another card won’t get you the coverage.
If you plan to use award points, that’s fine – just make sure you charge any taxes or fees to your card. That will activate the coverage and you’ll see the purchase with an airline ticket number show up on your statement.
Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
5X total points on air travel and 10X total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3X points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
$300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
- Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year. Through December 31, 2021, gas station & grocery store purchases will also count towards earning your Travel Credit
- Earn 5X total points on air travel and 10X total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3X points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
- Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
- With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 50% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories
- 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
- Access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select and up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®
- Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more
See additional details for Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Family, not friends
The typical coverage offered through these credit cards is up to $500 per ticket, but it usually only covers the cardholder, the cardholder’s spouse/domestic partner and the cardholder’s dependents. If you are traveling with friends, however, they won’t typically be covered by your credit card delay insurance even if you purchased their tickets.
Of course, if you share a hotel room, the point is moot – your coverage applies.
What expenses are covered?
Trip delay insurance will typically cover “reasonable” expenses – and yes, that is quite vague.
In practice, this means hotel stays for overnight delays, transportation, meals, toiletries, medication and other personal items.
Technically, alcohol purchases and gratuities at restaurants will not be reimbursed, but your personal experience may vary.
You will not be eligible for trip delay coverage if you miss your flight because of oversleeping or running late, or if you were given advance notice about the delay and had the option to change your plans but didn’t.
Your flight’s delayed – what do you do?
Filing a claim isn’t something you can do in a snap with your smartphone. You’ll need to go through some paperwork, and have items like these ready:
- Proof of the delay. The claims benefits administrator will want to see evidence of both the delay and its cause. You can start documenting the delay by taking screenshots of the airline’s website or app showing the delay – and showing the reason why. You’ll usually see this if you click on the details of your flight status.
- If you’re at the airport, ask for a printout of your itinerary, and that will often list your delay and the reason for it. You can also ask to have a “military excuse” printed out, in which an airline representative will explain the reasons for the delay. Despite the name, you do not have to be in the military to request this.
- Also consider getting a delay statement from the airline (here’s a list of ways to get the delay statement). American Airlines, for example, has an online form you can fill out after the delay, while others can send you a letter or email.
- A claim form. You’ll get this when you call the number on the back of your card to start a claim. Then, you’ll need to email or fax it back to the administrator with the rest of the documentation.
- Your card statement. Since a third-party administrator, not your card issuer, is handling the claim, you’ll need to send a copy of a billing statement that shows you charged the ticket to your card. Usually, it’s pretty easy to spot since most airline ticket charges appear with a long ticket number on your billing statement.
- The itinerary. The email confirmation of your trip from the airline is usually enough for this. If it’s not a round-trip ticket, you’ll need some proof that you booked a return trip with your card – and showing a one-way flight back to your home city is fine.
- Statement of compensation. If the airline compensated you with some vouchers or other settlement for the delay, you’ll need to provide that since most trip delay coverage only covers the out-of-pocket amount after any compensation you get from the airline. For most garden-variety weather delays, the airline won’t give you any compensation, so you can state that you received nothing.
- Receipts of expenses. Everything you want reimbursed will need a hard receipt, and you’ll also want to take pictures as backup that you can upload online. Even if you charged an expense to your card, you’ll need a receipt because the claims administrators don’t have access to your account. And you’ll need to submit the credit card statement that shows the items purchased that you want reimbursed – they’ll need both the receipts and the statement.
To get started with an eligible Chase card, call the number on the back of your card within 60 days of the delay and you’ll have up to 100 days to submit your documents. They’ll ask you to do it via eclaimsline.com. They’ll send an email approving the claim, or asking for additional information or evidence. If you have questions, ask for your claims administrator and be prepared for pushback.
Here is an example of the trip delay benefits coverage information for the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card. It’s subject to change and may vary based on your account, so call the number on the back of your card before relying on anything.
The bottom line
First of all, make sure you pay for your ticket with your card that has trip delay coverage — or if you’re paying for the ticket with rewards points, at least charge the taxes and fees to the card. Then, if you need to use the coverage, make sure to get proof of delay and save your receipts.
You can generally get coverage for yourself and immediate family members (as long as you paid for their tickets with your card), but not for friends.
Last but not least, be prepared. Review your card’s benefits before you take your trip, and make sure you know when your coverage kicks in and how much it will cover. By taking these steps, you might be able to save a significant amount of money if your trip gets delayed.
The information related to United Club℠ Card has been independently collected by CompareCards and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.