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Chase Ultimate Rewards® points are known for packing an impressive punch and delivering some of the highest value in the credit cards rewards business.
Popular Chase cards, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, earn coveted Chase Ultimate Rewards points. You can use these points to book travel — including car rentals, hotels, flights, tours and activities — through an easy-to-use portal, and redeem rewards to cover everyday items like grocery, home improvement and dining purchases.
Beyond convenience, Chase points have the potential to be worth 25% or 50% more when they are redeemed through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal or with the new Pay Yourself Back tool.
As of June 4, new Chase Sapphire Preferred cardholders can earn 100,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening. This is equal to $1,250 when you redeem points for eligible purchases with Pay Yourself Back or for travel.
And if travel loyalty programs are your thing, Chase points can score you a bigger bang for your buck with higher-than-average redemption rates when transferred to one of Chase’s 13 airline and hotel partners. For instance, 75,000 points could buy you three nights at the luxurious Park Hyatt Maldives.
Ahead, Select breaks down our favorite ways to redeem Chase Ultimate Rewards points.
The Chase travel portal is a great place to book travel fast, but transferring points to one of Chase’s 13 travel partners will stretch your rewards even further.
Ultimate Rewards points can be transferred to travel partners at a 1:1 ratio with either a Sapphire Preferred, Sapphire Reserve or Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card. You can transfer points to the following partners:
- United MileagePlus
- Southwest Rapid Rewards
- Air France-KLM Flying Blue
- British Airways
- Aer Lingus
- Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
- World of Hyatt
- Marriott Bonvoy
- IHG Rewards
The 100,000 bonus points from the Sapphire Preferred’s bonus would therefore be worth 100,000 points or miles with any of Chase’s travel partners.
The best ways to transfer Chase points
You can get outsized value from your Chase points when transferring to airline or hotel partners.
World of Hyatt
The World of Hyatt hotel program often presents one of the best values for transferring Chase points. Standard nights range from just 5,000 to 40,000 points.
You can book luxurious hotels, like the Park Hyatt Maldives or Park Hyatt Sydney for as little as 25,000 points a night. These hotels can often cost more than $1,000 a night.
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
Chase cardholders can redeem Virgin Atlantic miles to fly domestic itineraries on Delta for just 7,500 to 15,000 miles per segment, which can be a steal compared to what Delta charges customers when using Delta Skymiles for the same flight. And Delta One business class flights from the U.S. to Europe (with the exception of the U.K.) are 50,000 Virgin Atlantic miles for nonstop itineraries.
Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards
Southwest transfers work best in a few select scenarios. Mainly, for fares less than $100, Rapid Reward points are worth roughly 1.7 cents each, which beat the value of 1.25 cents or 1.5 cents you can get when booking travel through the Chase portal. And if you have a Southwest Airlines Companion Pass, you can book two flights for the price of one (excluding taxes and fees), in which case your points can be worth as high as 3.4 cents in value for sub-$100 fares.
Redeem for travel through the Ultimate Rewards portal
When you book travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal, your points are worth 1.25 cents each with the Sapphire Preferred and Ink Business Preferred or 1.5 cents each with the Sapphire Reserve.
That means you could book a $1,250 flight (on any airline) via the Chase travel site (which looks and works much like Expedia.com) for 100,000 points with the Sapphire Preferred Card or just roughly 83,500 points with the Sapphire Reserve Card.
This option is great because you can book with virtually any airline or hotel on the portal and there are no blackout dates. You’re not limited to the 13 Chase travel partners and their respective award availability, which can sometimes be hard to find.
Pay Yourself Back allows cardholders to redeem points for statement credits on eligible dining, grocery and home improvement purchases and still benefit from the 25% to 50% value boost with certain cards. Essentially you can “erase” these purchases from your statement at an elevated rate. So, 100,000 points from the Chase Sapphire Preferred would cover $1,250 of grocery or dining purchases, while 100,000 points with the Sapphire Reserve would erase $1,500 of the same purchases.
Recently, Chase announced these elevated rates will last through Sept. 30, 2021 (it was originally set to expire on April 30, 2021).
Here are all the eligible cards:
*Ink Business members can also offset select online advertising and shipping expenses.
Learn more how to use Chase’s Pay Yourself Back tool.
These are the Chase credit cards that earn Ultimate Rewards points.
* You must have one of these cards to transfer Chase points to travel partners.
5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022, 2X points on travel and dining worldwide, 1X points on all other purchases
Earn 100,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
15.99% to 22.99% variable on purchases and balance transfers
Balance transfer fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater
Foreign transaction fee
To determine which credit cards offer the best value for various categories, Select analyzed Chase credit cards available in the U.S. We compared each card on a range of features, including rewards, welcome bonus, introductory and standard APR, balance transfer fee and foreign transaction fees, as well as factors such as required credit and customer reviews when available. We also considered additional perks, the application process and how easy it is for the consumer to redeem points.
Select teamed up with location intelligence firm Esri. The company’s data development team provided the most up-to-date and comprehensive consumer spending data based on the 2019 Consumer Expenditure Surveys from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. You can read more about their methodology here.
Esri’s data team created a sample annual budget of approximately $22,126 in retail spending. The budget includes six main categories: groceries ($5,174), gas ($2,218), dining out ($3,675), travel ($2,244), utilities ($4,862) and general purchases ($3,953). General purchases include items such as housekeeping supplies, clothing, personal care products, prescription drugs and vitamins, and other vehicle expenses.
Select used this budget to estimate how much the average consumer would save over the course of a year, two years and five years, assuming they would attempt to maximize their rewards potential by earning all welcome bonuses offered and using the card for all applicable purchases. All rewards total estimations are net the annual fee.
While the five-year estimates we’ve included are derived from a budget similar to the average American’s spending, you may earn a higher or lower return depending on your shopping habits.
Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the Select editorial staff’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any third party.