If you’re a savvy traveler, you’re probably always looking for new ways to earn points. And if you’re a Chase cardholder, you’re in luck. The Chase Ultimate Rewards program allows you to cash in your points with airline and hotel partners at full value.
You’d do well to familiarize yourself with this program and how to stretch your points as far as possible as a Chase customer. Here’s how to transfer points to other rewards programs through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
About the Chase Ultimate Rewards Program
The Chase Ultimate Rewards program is an exclusive points-earning program for select Chase cardholders. You are automatically enrolled in the program when you sign up for an eligible card. You can redeem your points in a variety of ways including to purchase travel (Chase travel is powered by Expedia, so prices and offerings are comparable to what’s available on this site).
But though this program seems to be geared toward those who use their cards to pay for flight tickets, hotel stays, and other travel-related expenses, there are so many ways to redeem your points.
If you just want to keep things simple and convert points to dollars, you can redeem your points for cash and have your earnings deposited right into your Chase account or converted to a credit on your whole statement. Generally, you can redeem points for $0.01 per point (unless a promotional rate is available).
Or, you can “pay yourself back” and have your points applied to certain transactions, which you can pick and choose to maximize points values. If you go this route, you will be able to see all of your recent transactions and select which ones you’d like to apply points to and be reimbursed for. You can see prices in points on the right. Chase rotates which categories are discounted. For example, dining will sometimes be eligible for up to 10% more points value.
You can also use your points to make purchases. Each point is worth $0.008 when you Shop With Points, on average, but Chase runs promotions that make your points worth more at select stores. You can shop through over 500 different retailers and earn up to 5x bonus points on your purchases. Participating stores include Nike, Home Depot, and Dell.
Points can also be redeemed for gift cards, with some being discounted and requiring up to 10% fewer points than full price.
You can use points to pay for Amazon or Apple purchases as well. Just link your card with these sites and use it at checkout, then decide how many points you’d like to deduct to help pay for your purchase.
When you sign in to your Chase account and go into the Ultimate Rewards page, you will be able to see your total points in the upper lefthand corner of the screen. Click on this and a menu will drop down with all of your redemption options.
How to Earn Points
The easiest way to boost your Ultimate Rewards account with points is to use your credit card as often as possible. Using your card for everyday purchases including grocery shopping, dining, gas, and more earns points; be sure to activate your 5% categories to get even more on select spending categories. You can also earn between 1 and 15 points for every dollar you spend when you Shop through Chase at more than 450 stores online and in-person.
Purchasing your travel with your Chase card is another quick and easy way to pad your account. Purchases available include:
- Flight tickets
- Hotel bookings
- Car rentals
- Timeshare rentals
- Cruise trips
- Train tickets
- Transportation such as buses, taxis, and ferries
- Road tolls
- Travel agency fees
How much you’ll earn on travel depends on which credit card you’re using, with certain cards such as the Sapphire Reserve having higher point values when redeemed.
Be sure to compare your options to see where your points are worth the most when it’s time for you to use them, and don’t think that they have to stay in your Chase account. Transfer some or all of your points to Chase’s transfer partners to save money on flights and hotel bookings.
Chase has partnered with three hotel brands and their rewards programs. These are:
These are some of the largest loyalty programs in the country and each one allows you to redeem loyalty points for reward nights, room discounts, and complimentary perks and upgrades. Transfer points from your Chase Ultimate Rewards account to qualify for higher tiers and unlock more earnings potential.
If you’re an IHG Rewards Club member, you can transfer your Chase points over as elite qualifying points. The highest membership tier, Spire Elite, requires either 75 qualified nights in IHG hotels or 75,000 points. These members are eligible for more perks and earn more points on their stays. Each point is worth about 0.5 to 0.6 cents, on average.
The Marriott Bonvoy rewards program is a good one for people who travel a lot, as this hotel brand has incredible geographical coverage. You can purchase an award night for as little as 5,000 points. There are six rewards statuses with Ambassador Elite being the most premium. This membership tier requires more than 100 qualifying nights a year and at least $14,000 total in annual qualifying purchases and bookings. Points are worth about 0.7 cents apiece.
Finally, there’s the World of Hyatt Loyalty program. Often called one of the best, this program tends to have the highest points values by a wide margin at an estimated 1.9 cents per point. To qualify for elite status, Globalist status, you need to have at least 50,000 points in your account or 30 or more tier-qualifying nights under your belt.
You can’t transfer points from a hotel loyalty account back to Chase, so be sure to find out where you can get the highest point value before making the transfer. Although points transfer at a 1:1 ratio, some hotel stays have relatively low points values compared to what you could get if you were to redeem your points through Chase or another partner. It is probably wise to favor the rewards programs through which you have the most elite status.
Speaking of, find out if your favorite airlines are also Chase transfer partners.
Chase partners with 11 different airlines that allow you to transfer Ultimate Rewards points to their loyalty programs. These are:
- United MileagePlus
- JetBlue TrueBlue
- Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards
- Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
- British Airways Executive Club
- Air Canada Aeroplan
- Aer Lingus AerClub
- Air France Flying Blue
- Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer
- Iberia Plus
- Emirates Skywards
Of course, you need to be a member of these rewards programs too in order to transfer your points. Generally, airline loyalty status can get you award flights, complimentary seat upgrades, and perks such as priority baggage check or check in. Airlines tend to run promotions that temporarily increase points values, so always be on the lookout for these.
Remember that you can’t transfer points back and forth between your Chase account and your airline loyalty accounts.
Which Transfer Partners Give You the Most Value
Of Chase’s transfer airline partners, here are the three we feel are most rewarding overall based on point value, reward availability, and how easy it is to reach elite status.
United MileagePlus is often considered to be one of the best airline loyalty programs in the world. MileagePlus miles never expire (whether your account stays active or not) and this loyalty program boasts the most award destinations and economy award flights of any airline.
The highest membership tier, Premier 1K, requires either 36 Premier Qualifying Flights and 13,500 Premier Qualifying Points or just 15,000 Premier Qualifying Points. Points are valued at about 1 cent each and award flights start at about 12,500 points (for economy class).
The JetBlue loyalty program, TrueBlue, consists of just two membership tiers: basic and Mosaic. Everyone who joins TrueBlue becomes a basic member and can work their way up to elite status by booking flights. To qualify for Mosaic status, you need to earn 12,000 qualifying points and fly at least 30 times through JetBlue in a year or earn 15,000 qualifying points. Points don’t expire.
These points are valued at between 1.3 and 1.5 cents each. Award prices are proportional to cash prices, so the points you need to purchase an award ticket depends on the travel season and ticket availability.
Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards
The Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards loyalty program is another great one. These points don’t expire and reward seats are not limited as they often aren’t. To achieve elite status, called A-List status, you need to fly a minimum of 25 qualifying flight segments or earn 35,000 qualifying points.
These points are valued at about 1.3 cents apiece and award flights start at roughly 6,600 points for the lowest flight classes.
How to Transfer Rewards
To transfer rewards points from Chase to a transfer partner rewards program, log in to your Ultimate Rewards account and select the credit card you’ve been earning points with. Then choose “Transfer to Travel Partners” from the menu and find the travel partner you’re transferring to in the Hotels or Airlines section.
You will need to provide information for the rewards account that the points are going into to verify your membership, so have your other account pulled up or your reward card ready. You can only transfer Ultimate Rewards points you’ve earned to loyalty accounts under your name or an authorized user’s name. Typically, transfers are instant. Be sure to confirm through both Chase and your chosen loyalty account that a transfer has been processed successfully.
Chase Travel Credit Cards That Earn Points
Not all Chase credit cards earn travel points, and a few Chase travel cards that do earn points do not permit you to transfer points to other loyalty programs.
Here are the three credit cards that earn points and allow rewards transfers:
Chase Sapphire Preferred
This card has long been one of our favorites. You can earn 5x points on all travel purchases made through Ultimate Rewards except for hotel bookings that are eligible for the $50 Anniversary Hotel Credit. All other travel purchases earn 2x points and everyday purchases on dining, fuel, and grocery earn 3x points. New cardmembers are eligible to earn up to 100,000 bonus points. The annual fee for this card is $95 but you can usually get the first year free.
Chase Sapphire Reserve
A step above the Preferred card, the Chase Sapphire Reserve card gives you 5x points on all flight tickets and 10x points on car rentals and hotel bookings purchased through the Ultimate Rewards platform. All other travel purchases earn 3x points. New cardmembers are eligible to earn up to 60,000 bonus points. This card comes with a hefty annual fee of $550 (plus $75 for each authorized user), but it does give you a $300 annual travel credit.
Chase Ink Business Preferred
This business credit card lets you earn 3x points on the first $150,000 you spend on shipping, advertising, internet and phone services, and travel and 1 point for every dollar spent after this maximum and on everything else. New cardmembers are eligible to earn up to 100,000 bonus points. The annual fee for this card is $95.
When purchasing travel, be sure to go through the Ultimate Rewards platform to earn as many points as possible.
With so many great ways to earn and redeem points through the Chase Ultimate Rewards programs and its partner hotels and airlines, there’s no excuse for not getting in on this saving opportunity. Get the most out of your Chase travel points by transferring them to partner hotel and airline loyalty programs.