I have done your research for you. To the tune of 6 hours straight comparing two cards I thought were the best long term rewards for travel.
The Amex Everyday Premier card was my other close choice as it offers 3x points on grocery (no Wal-mart or superstores included), 2x points on gas, and 1x on all others. But, it's an Amex and has international fees and not AS widely accepted as Visa. I decided that even though I will get less points per swipe with the Chase card, I can use it anywhere and have no hidden fees or restrictions (both had the same annual fee). Amex likes to add that little "limitations apply" star so you never know if you will have a participating merchant or not with Amex.
Next I looked at which airlines I could use the rewards. Amex has restrictions (as well as a fee capped at $99.00) for transferring points to airline miles and some are not a 1:1 ratio. For domestic flights you are limited to Delta and British Air essentially (with Virgin Atlantic and Hawaiian as skim options) for domestic flights. All other carriers with Amextravel specialize more in international flights. Chase allows use (and points transfers at 1:1) to United, Southwest, Virgin, and British Airways (which you can book American Airline flights on). Most of my discount ticket searches came up AA or United for domestic flights. So I leaned towards Chase.
Next, I looked at hotels and cruises. Again, Chase came out on top with the partners they allow points to be used with such at Hyatt, Merriott and all IHG partners. Not that the Amex card was bad, it just didn't fit my typical travel carriers as all they offer is Hilton and Starwood.
Now let's move to the shopping. Chase wins "hands down" on the shopping partners. The list is too extensive to name here, but most will be happy to know that once you put your Chase card into Amazon, it will link your points to Amazon and you can use them for direct checkout on Amazon's site (just like Discover card). Amex fell short by not offering any online shopping partners and specializing more on classy event discounts like the Kentucky Derby, etc.
So, let's get to the approval. CK said I had very good odds of approval with a 730 score on TU and a 732 on EF. I ran my Experian score for $1 on their site and came back with a 726. I ran my Fico on the Discover card app and it came back as a 696. Remember, a true Fico is not the same as your credit score and some lenders use a Fico instead of one credit reporting agency. While I was nervous about the Fico, I know through research that Chase pulls an Experian only report (my email alert confirmed that after the application was approved) so I applied. Keep in mind I have excellent payment history and 22 total accounts on my report so that might have something to do with the approval, I am just telling my story so you can compare your situation if you are nervous about applying. The application was simple (click the "apply now" on CK and it takes you to Chase). A few basic info things like address and phone and I was instantly approved for $13,300. Card in the mail.
I would like Chase to offer better 2x and or 3x daily rewards, but they have specials here and there from 5x up to 25x, so you need to check their site frequently and be savy. All in all, I think I will be happy and only time and redemption of points will tell if I made the right choice. Don't forget to search online for how to transfer points from Chase to airline miles, as this will bump the rewards percentage and really save you some points and cash!
In case you scrolled to the bottom here are my stats for comparison:
Approved for $13,300.
Trans Union: 730
Annual income: 63k
Total debt on report: 101k
Number of accounts: 22
Credit card utilization: 2% (4 cards) and I HIGHLY suggest paying off cards below 10% before applying for a high end card. CC companies REALLY look at that.
Derogitory marks: 1 tax lein from 2009 (paid off)
Oldest open account: 3 yrs
Average account age: 1.7 yrs
Hope this helps a bit.