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If you are excited by the idea of free and discounted travel, then you should know about Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Among credit card rewards programs, Chase Ultimate Rewards is considered one of the best.

Chase Ultimate Rewards points are a valuable currency you can use to purchase flights, hotels, cruises, vacation rentals, travel activities and more. Chase offers multiple credit cards that earn Chase points with every dollar you spend. They may even come with a sign-up bonus worth tens of thousands of points, which can be enough for multiple round-trip flights.

Here’s what you need to know to get started and maximize the value of your Chase rewards.

Credit Cards That Earn Chase Ultimate Rewards

The following are the best credit cards to earn Chase points. Each has unique features and benefits worth reviewing before making a choice.

Chase Sapphire Preferred®

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  • Our Rating 5/5 Read the review
  • APR20.24% – 27.24% (Variable)
  • Annual Fee$95
  • 60,000 60,000Chase Ultimate Rewards Points More Info

    Earn 60,000 points after you spend $4,000 within three months of account opening. Dollar Equivalent: $1,320 (60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points * .022 base)

The Chase Sapphire Preferred is at the top of our list of starter travel rewards cards. Between a digestible $95 annual fee, valuable Chase Ultimate Rewards points that can be transferred to over a dozen hotel and airline partners, and easy ways to earn points, this is a top card for rewards beginners and experts alike.

Overview

The Chase Sapphire Preferred actually works like having over a dozen different rewards credit cards. That’s because this credit card allows you to transfer your rewards points into miles with 11 airlines and points with three hotel programs.

Although the Chase Sapphire Preferred might not be ideal for the most frequent travelers and highest spenders, it’s part of a family of Chase cards that has a built-in upgrade path. So when it comes time to take your travel rewards game to the next level, you won’t have to start from scratch with an entirely different credit card and rewards program.

The card has a $95 annual fee, but the $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit effectively reduces that fee to $45. Plus, the credit card allows you to continue earning points through bonus categories and a 10% anniversary points boost. But when it comes time to redeem your rewards for travel, this card really shines. You can take advantage of some really strong transfer partners such as United, Southwest, Singapore Airlines, Virgin Atlantic and Hyatt. Similarly, you can just book any reservation you want through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal.

Pros

  • Points are easily transferable to airlines and hotel partners
  • Accelerated earnings on dining, travel & household purchases
  • Excellent travel and purchase protections
  • No foreign transaction fees

Cons

  • Not ideal for the highest spenders
  • $95 annual fee

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is one of the gold standards for earning travel rewards. This travel credit card helps users earn points quickly with accelerated rewards in everyday spending categories like travel and dining.

Cardholders enjoy perks like a $50 annual hotel credit, 10% anniversary point boost and access to the Ultimate Rewards Travel portal.

New cardmembers can earn 60,000 bonus points after using their credit card to spend $4,000 within three months of account opening. This bonus is worth $750 in travel reservations booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards, but potentially more when transferred to airline and hotel partners. Read our full review of the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card.

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

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Rates & Fees
  • Our Rating 4.5/5 Read the review
  • APR21.24% – 28.24% (Variable)
  • Annual Fee$550
  • 60,000 60,000Chase Ultimate Rewards Points More Info

    Earn 60,000 bonus points after using your card to spend $4,000 within three months of account opening. Dollar Equivalent: $1,320 (60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points * .022 base)

The Chase Sapphire Reserve® card is among the best travel credit cards available. Not only does it offer one of the best credit card sign-up bonuses, but the card also comes packed with a number of valuable travel and lifestyle benefits that warrant its premium price tag.

Overview

If you’re looking to elevate your travel experience, look no further than the Chase Sapphire Reserve. When you first get approved, you’ll earn a sign-up bonus of 60,000 points after you spend $4,000 in the first three months — that’s worth at least $900 in travel-related spending booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards® and potentially more if you transfer your rewards to one of Chase’s airline or hotel partners.

Pros

  • An array of premium travel perks including access to Priority Pass lounges
  • Easy-to-use $300 travel credit that helps offset card’s annual fee
  • Generous rewards rates for spending

Cons

  • High annual fee may be a deterrent for some
  • Perks are starting to get stale relative to newer competition

More Details: The Chase Sapphire Reserve® is among the top premium travel cards available. While this credit card comes with a hefty $550 annual fee, the Sapphire Reserve is packed with travel perks that more than make up for the expense.

Right off the bat, the Chase Sapphire Reserve features a $300 annual travel credit. You also get free access to more than 1,300 Priority Pass lounges and restaurant options in airports around the world. Those lounges usually give you free food and drinks, cleaner bathrooms, fast internet and a comfortable place to sit outside of the ruckus of an airport terminal.

New cardholders can also earn a sign-up bonus of 60,000 points after they spend $4,000 during the first three months of account opening. This Chase Sapphire Reserve bonus is worth $900 in travel redemptions when booking through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal — where each point is worth at least 1.5 cents. Read our full Chase Sapphire Reserve review.

Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

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  • Our Rating 4.5/5 Read the review
  • APR20.24% – 25.24% (Variable)
  • Annual Fee$95
  • 100,000 100,000Chase Ultimate Rewards Points More Info

    Earn 100,000 bonus points after you spend $15,000 in the first three months Dollar Equivalent: $2,200 (100,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points * .022 base)

If you’re a business owner who travels a lot for work or pleasure, this card is an ideal choice. Between a robust 3x points on five categories and the ability to use transferable Ultimate Rewards points, this card is a no-brainer despite the $95 annual fee.

Overview

This card offers a whopping 100,000 bonus points after you spend $15,000 in the first three months — with the card’s 25% bonus on travel booked through Chase, that’s worth $1,250. But you could potentially get more through one of the bank’s transfer partners. The rewards you earn from the Ink Business Preferred Card can be transferred to 10 different airline partners including United, Southwest, Virgin Atlantic, Singapore and British Airways, as well as hotel partners Hyatt, Hilton and Marriott.

Unlike the other two Ink Business cards, you can use this card to transfer your rewards directly to airline miles and hotel points. Travelers may also like this card’s cellphone protection policy that will cover up to $600 per claim.

Pros

  • 3x points on 5 different categories (up to $150,000)
  • Robust travel, purchase and cellphone protections
  • Ability to earn transferable points to use on travel partners
  • No additional charge for extra cards for additional authorized users

Cons

  • $95 annual fee
  • Businesses that don’t spend on the category bonuses won’t benefit

If you’re a sole proprietor or small business owner who travels a lot for work or pleasure, the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card is an ideal choice. That’s because points earned with this business credit card can be redeemed for free and discounted travel in the Chase Ultimate Rewards Travel portal. And the Ink Business Preferred makes earning points easy with bonus categories that are important to small business like travel, shipping purchases, internet, cable and phone services, and on advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines.

In addition to all of that value, the Ink Business Preferred Card offers new cardholders a sign-up bonus of 100,000 points after spending $15,000 with the business card in the first three months of account opening. Those 100,000 points are worth $1,250 in free travel when redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards, where points are worth 25% more. Read our full review of the Ink Business Preferred.

Card-to-Card Points Transfers

Points earned on different Chase credit cards can be pooled into a single travel credit card account and redeemed together. These card-to-card point transfers allow you to move points earned from a Freedom card or an Ink card into one of the Sapphire cards or the Ink Business Preferred Credit Card to redeem for outsized value.

For example, if you have the Chase Freedom Unlimited®, you cannot redeem points earned with that card for travel at the higher rewards rate. But if you also have the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card or Chase Sapphire Reserve, you can transfer your Chase Freedom FlexSM points to either of those cards and redeem for the higher value (or transfer pooled points to once of Chase’s travel partners for even more value).

Pairing the Freedom Unlimited or Freedom Flex with either the Sapphire Preferred or Sapphire Reserve is a common and effective points-earning strategy. Both the Sapphire Preferred and Reserve earn accelerated rewards for travel spending, while the Freedom cards offer accelerated points earning in other spending categories including gas, groceries and online spending.

If you’re eligible for a business credit card, Chase’s suite of Ink Business cards are arguably among the most popular business credit cards because of the potential for points earning and flexibility in rewards redemptions. Pairing an Ink Business card alongside a Sapphire card can supercharge your Chase points earning and maximize rewards for your everyday spending.

Chase Freedom Flex℠

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  • Our Rating 4.5/5 Read the review
  • APR19.24% – 27.99% (Variable)
  • Annual Fee$0
  • $200 $200Cash Bonus More Info

    Receive a $200 bonus after you spend $500 in the first three months.

The Chase Freedom Flex card is an excellent cash-back credit card for people who are looking to maximize rewards. Cardmembers can take advantage of 5% cash back on rotating categories, 5% back on travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3% back on dining, including takeout and delivery, 3% back on drugstore purchases and 1% back on everything else.

Overview

Getting more in cash back is a clear win for anyone who is considering the Freedom Flex card. This card is ideal for anyone who want to maximize cash-back rewards with the option to get more value with travel redemptions.

Pros

  • Generous earnings on select rotating categories each quarter
  • Cellphone and trip insurance coverage
  • No annual fee
  • Ability to convert rewards to transferable Ultimate Rewards points

Cons

  • Can’t transfer Chase points to travel partners unless paired with select products

The Chase Freedom FlexSM Card is an excellent cash-back credit card for people who are looking to maximize rewards. Cardholders can take advantage of its excellent rewards rate: 5% cash back on rotating categories when you activate (up to $1,500 each quarter), 5% back on travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3% back on dining, including takeout and delivery, 3% back at drugstores and 1% back on other purchases.

As a new Freedom Flex cardholder, you’ll also earn a $200 sign-up bonus after you spend $500 in the first three months. Read our full Chase Freedom Flex Card review.

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

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  • Our Rating 4.5/5 Read the review
  • APR19.24% – 27.99% (Variable)
  • Annual Fee$0
  • 1.5% 1.5%Extra Cash Back More Info

    Earn 1.5% bonus cash back (up to $20,000 in purchases) during your first year. Worth up to $300 in cash back.

The Chase Freedom Unlimited® card has been one of the top cash-back credit cards since it first came on the scene, with an easy 1.5x return on almost everything. It’s especially useful since it earns versatile Ultimate Rewards points.

Overview

The Chase Freedom Unlimited card is unique for a couple of important reasons. First, it comes with purchase protection and extended warranty protection you don’t see with some other no-fee cash-back cards. Second, you earn cash back in the form of points (Chase Ultimate Rewards) when paired with another annual-fee earning Chase product, you can get even more value if you love to travel by transferring to partners.

That’s because while the Freedom cards are marketed as cash-back credit cards, they actually offer points. You can use those points to book travel through Chase at a rate of 1 cent per point. But if you have the Chase Sapphire Preferred® or Chase Sapphire Reserve®, you’ll get 25% and 50% more value on those travel redemptions, respectively. (Plus, the ability to transfer your points, too.)

 

Pros

  • No category bonuses to remember; earn at least 1.5% back on everything
  • No annual fee
  • Generous travel and purchase protection benefits

Cons

  • Can’t transfer Chase points unless paired with another annual-fee Chase product

More Details: The Chase Freedom Unlimited® is a valuable all-around credit card with no annual fee. This cash-back card earns a rewards rate of 5% cash back on travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3% back at drugstores, 3% back on dining, including takeout and eligible delivery services and a flat-rate 1.5% back on other purchases. There are no rotating categories to track, caps on how much you can earn or excluded purchase categories.

New cardholders can take advantage of its big sign-up bonus—enjoy an additional 1.5% cash back on all purchases (up to $20,000 spent) in the first year. This bonus is valued at up to $300 in cash back, and stacks with all the above rewards rates, meaning you can earn up to 6.5% cash back. Read our full review of the Chase Freedom Unlimited Card.

Ink Business Cash® Credit Card

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Secure application on issuer’s website

  • Our Rating 4.5/5 Read the review
  • APR17.49% – 23.49% (Variable)
  • Annual Fee$0
  • $900 $900Cash Bonus More Info

    This card offers you $900 in cash back after you spend $6,000 on purchases within three months of account opening.

Small business owners and sole proprietors who want flexibility in their credit card rewards will certainly benefit from this no-annual-fee card, especially if you spend on select categories.

Overview

The Ink Business Cash is legendary for its offer of 5% cash back for purchases at office supply stores and on many telecommunications services, with no annual fee. And while 5% cash back sounds great, these rewards can be much more valuable when paired with another Chase credit card that allows transfers to airline miles or hotel points. In addition to earning excellent cash-back rewards, it also includes competitive introductory offers and provides cards for employees at no additional charge.

Pros

  • No annual fee
  • 5x back on a broad array of business spending categories
  • Robust travel and purchase protections
  • Don’t need a full-fledged business to apply

Cons

  • Businesses that don’t spend on the category bonuses won’t benefit

The Ink Business Cash® Card is a valuable business cash-back card for entrepreneurs of all types. Earn an impressive rewards rate of 5% cash back on select business purchases. These include the first $25,000 you spend each account anniversary year at office supply stores and on phone, cable and internet services. Ink Business Cash also offers 2% cash back on up to $25,000 in combined purchases at restaurants and gas stations. You’ll earn 1% cash back on virtually all other purchases.

As a new cardholder, get $900 in bonus cash back when you make $6,000 worth of purchases within the first three months of account opening. Read our full review of the Ink Business Cash.

Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card

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Secure application on issuer’s website

  • Our Rating 4.5/5 Read the review
  • APR17.49% – 23.49% (Variable)
  • Annual Fee$0
  • $900 $900Cash Bonus More Info

    Earn $900 in bonus cash after you spend $6,000 in the first three months from account opening.

If you want cash back that you can drive back into your business or use for personal expenses, this card could be a great option. It features 1.5% cash back, no annual fee and a $900 sign-up bonus, making it our choice for best business cash back credit card.

Overview

The Chase Ink Business Unlimited® credit card is one of the best business credit cards on the market, and if you use it right by pairing it with a Chase card with an annual fee, you can unlock access to valuable transferable Ultimate Rewards points that you can move to travel partners.

Pros

  • No annual fee
  • Easy earning structure of 1.5X back on everything with no limits
  • Robust travel and purchase protections

Cons

  • Businesses that don’t spend on the category bonuses won’t benefit
  • 1.5X isn’t the highest earning rate

The Ink Business Unlimited® credit card is one of the best business rewards credit cards on the market, primarily because of its large upfront bonus. As a new cardholder, you’ll earn $900 in bonus cash after you spend $6,000 on new purchases within three months of account opening

Ink Unlimited offers a simple flat-rate 1.5% cash back per dollar spent on all purchases. And, if you need employee cards, you can get them at no additional charge. Read our full review of the Ink Unlimited card.

Other Ways to Earn Chase Travel Rewards

You can earn Chase Ultimate Rewards points with one of the credit cards listed in the next section. When using your card, here are the main ways to earn and accumulate points:

  • Regular purchases: Chase cards typically give a bonus on categories such as travel and restaurants while offering one point per dollar on general purchases.
  • Bonus rewards: If you meet minimum spending requirements within the published timeframe, usually three months, you can earn a sign-up bonus worth up to 60,000 points. Sometimes higher bonuses are available.
  • Shopping bonuses: If you shop through the Chase Ultimate Rewards website, you can earn additional rewards with a list of supported retailers.
  • Converting cash back: If you pair an Ultimate Rewards card with a Chase cash-back rewards card, you can move cash back into Ultimate Rewards at a rate of one cent to one point.

Chase Travel Rewards: Ultimate Rewards® Program

Pros

  • Easy to earn points: Earn points with every purchase and start out with a generous sign-up bonus.
  • Valuable points for travel rewards: Points are easily worth 25% more when booked through Ultimate Rewards.
  • Points are flexible with many redemption options: Book flights, hotels, rental cars, cruises, vacation rentals and more.

Cons

  • Credit card annual fees: the best Ultimate Rewards cards have annual fees.

Chase Ultimate Rewards is the points program for Chase rewards credit cards. Chase’s program is among the most flexible rewards programs around, especially for people who are excited about free and discount travel. Ultimate Rewards points are generally regarded as being some of the most valuable. In fact, because of their flexibility and transfer options, we regularly give these points high marks in our monthly point valuations.

What Are Chase Ultimate Rewards Points?

Chase Ultimate Rewards points are travel rewards points from Chase. They are best redeemed for travel either through the Ultimate Rewards website or transferring to travel partners.  Additionally, Chase Ultimate Rewards points never expire, as long as your account remains active and in good standing. When redeemed through the Chase website, you can use them for virtually any flight, hotel, rental car and other travel.

The Chase Ultimate Rewards portal is powered by Expedia, so you can book just about anything through their site directly with your Chase points. You can also transfer points to an airline or hotel partner at a 1:1 ratio. That means one Chase point is worth one United MileagePlus mile, one Marriott Bonvoy point or one point in any of the participating programs.

How Much Are Chase Ultimate Rewards Points Worth?

According to our points valuation guide, Ultimate Rewards points are valued at the very top tier of rewards points; you can usually get more than double the stated value when redeeming them.

However, the manner in which you use your points will influence this value. They can be worth less than a cent or more than five cents each, based on a range of factors including transfer partner award bookings. See our points valuation guide for more details on the worth of Chase points, as well as the value of rewards points from airlines, hotels and other credit card rewards programs.

Similar to earning points, when it comes time to redeem points, the value is dependent on the credit card you use. As an example, points earned with the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card can be redeemed in the Ultimate Rewards portal for 1.25 cents each, while points earned with the Chase Sapphire Reserve can be redeemed for 1.5 cents a piece.

However, premium award bookings on partner airlines tend to offer the biggest value per point. On some flights, you may be able to get over five cents per point.

The best values we’ve come across came from a last-minute flight and an international business class trip to Israel. At a minimum, you should only redeem points if you’ll get at least the rate offered by booking through the Chase website directly with your card.

Redeeming and Transferring Chase Ultimate Rewards

The best way to use Chase Ultimate Rewards points is for travel. You can redeem points for airfare, lodging, rental cars and other travel-related expenses through the Ultimate Rewards portal, powered by Expedia.

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When you are ready to redeem your points, the first place to go is your Chase account. Click on the link to redeem or view your Ultimate Rewards account for details and redemptions. You can shop for travel and redeem directly on the Chase website. The value you’ll get for your points depends on the Chase credit card that you’re using to redeem them.

  • Chase’s cash-back cards carry a value of 1 cent per point. These cards include the Freedom-branded cards, as well as the Ink Business Cash and the Ink Business Unlimited.
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred and Ink Business Preferred carry a value of 1.25 cents per point.
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve carries a value of 1.5 cents per point.

Transferring Points to Chase Travel Partners

When you carry either of the Sapphire credit cards or the Ink Business Preferred, you can transfer your Ultimate Rewards to any of Chase’s travel partners. Chase is partnered with 10 airline rewards programs and three hotel rewards programs.

The very best value for points usually comes from moving your Chase points to a transfer partner. However, don’t move points until you have a plan to use the resulting miles or points. Keeping them in the bank at Chase is the best strategy until you’re ready to book.

You’ll use the Ultimate Rewards portal to transfer your points. In our experience, most transfers are instant if you log out and log back into the partner’s rewards website. From there, you can book your award flight or hotel reservation directly.

What airlines does Chase partner with? Full list of airlines:

  • Aer Lingus AerClub
  • Air Canada Aeroplan
  • British Airways Executive Club
  • Emirates Skywards
  • Flying Blue (Air France/KLM)
  • Iberia Plus
  • JetBlue
  • Singapore Airlines
  • Southwest Airlines
  • United Airlines
  • Virgin Atlantic

Chase Ultimate Rewards gives you access to all of the three big airline alliances. For example, you could use British Airways points to book flights on American Airlines.

Full list of Chase hotel partners:

  • Hyatt
  • IHG
  • Marriott

Hotel partners include mega-brands Hyatt, IHG and Marriott. Marriott has the biggest list of properties of any hotel chain in the world. The Hyatt program has gained popularity since Marriott launched its new Bonvoy program, however. IHG also offers a large list of popular and luxury brands.

Other Redemption Options

Here’s a longer list that includes additional redemption options:

  • Travel: Book directly through Ultimate Rewards and get at least one cent per point. With the Sapphire Preferred, points are worth 1.25 cents each. With the Sapphire Reserve, they are worth 1.5 cents each.
  • Transfer partners: Moving points to airline and hotel partners including United, Southwest, Hyatt and Marriott can get you even bigger value. See below for a full list.
  • Experiences: Chase offers unique and exclusive experiences for sporting events, concerts, highly rated restaurants and more.
  • Gift cards: Gift cards give you a lower value per point than travel, usually around one cent per point. You can choose from over 200 brands.
  • Cash back: If you’re feeling uninspired or need the extra money, you can redeem for cash at a value of one cent per point.
  • Shopping: Retail partners Amazon and Apple allow you to redeem points for purchases directly. Again, this tends to offer a lower value than travel.

Bottom Line

Chase Ultimate Rewards is a popular credit card rewards program for a reason. It offers multiple ways to earn rewards points and then provides even more avenues to redeem those points for outsized value. While you can use your Ultimate Rewards for cash back, shopping and gift cards, redeeming your points — either through the Ultimate Rewards portal or transferring to a travel partner — will always be the best way to use your rewards.

However, if you’re not convinced that it’s the right program for you, consider other credit card rewards programs from issuers like Citi, American Express and Capital One. Additionally, airlines like Southwest, Delta and United also offer valuable rewards programs and credit cards.

Chase Travel Rewards Frequently Asked Questions

  • If you book an Airbnb reservation with a Chase travel rewards card, the purchases are included in the travel category. Chase Sapphire Preferred cardholders earn 2x points per dollar spent on Airbnb stays. Sapphire Reserve cardholders get 3x points per dollar. With any other Chase card, Airbnb is coded as a travel category purchase. Chase Ink Business Preferred cards offer 3x points on travel.

    If you have the Reserve version, you may use the $300 to reimburse yourself for spending with Airbnb automatically. If you’re on a budget weekend away, your Sapphire Reserve travel credit could cover the entire cost.

    If you already have a Chase card, head over to the Chase Offers section of Chase.com or the Chase mobile app. You may see a bonus option for 5% back for purchases with Airbnb. That’s an addition to any rewards you would earn from the purchase. This offer has come and gone a couple of times in the past, so it’s worth looking at Chase Offers before booking.

  • When using a Chase travel rewards card, gas station purchases get their own category. Unfortunately, that means you won’t earn travel category rewards for purchases at the gas station.

    If gas is one of your top purchasing categories, consider supplementing your Chase Ultimate Rewards card with either the Chase Freedom Unlimited or Chase Freedom Flex (or both). With Freedom Unlimited, you get the equivalent of 1.5x points per dollar on all purchases, including gas, and can merge the points into your Ultimate Rewards balance. With Freedom Flex, you get 5x rewards on rotating categories that change every three months. Gas is in the rotation regularly. Both cards have no annual fee.

    If you spend a lot on gas for your small business, there are opportunities to earn a regular bonus on gas purchases with the Ink Business Cash, worth 2% back or 2x rewards points.

  • You can book flights using points through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal on nearly any major airline. Depending on the card in your wallet, you’ll get one cent to 1.5 cents per point when redeeming for flights, hotels, rental cars and other travel through Chase.

    However, you can get even more value in many cases when transferring points to an airline partner. When redeeming for premium rewards, such as international business class, you may find opportunities to get more than five cents per point. This is one of the best ways to use a Chase travel rewards card.

    Here’s the full list of airline partners: Aer Lingus AerClub, British Airways Executive Club, Emirates Skywards, Flying Blue (Air France/KLM), Iberia Plus, JetBlue, Singapore Airlines, Southwest Airlines, United Airlines and Virgin Atlantic.

  • Chase travel rewards are among the most valuable of any rewards program. Chase travel rewards are earned through the Chase Ultimate Rewards program. When you use a card in the Ultimate Rewards program, you can earn points with every purchase. Depending on the card and the purchase, you’ll typically earn between 1x and 5x points per dollar.

    You can redeem Chase travel rewards points for cash back, but booking free and discounted travel is the best use of travel rewards points. Points are worth between one and 1.5 cents when booking travel directly through Chase. You can also transfer points to an airline or hotel partner for potentially higher values per point.

    In addition to travel, you can redeem Chase travel rewards points for experiences including sporting events, concerts and exclusive chef events, gift cards and shopping partners. But for most people, the best way to redeem for the best value per point is travel.

    You can earn Chase travel rewards with the popular Chase Sapphire Preferred and Chase Sapphire Reserve credit cards for individuals or the Chase Ink Business Preferred for small businesses. If you use any Chase cash back card, you can combine your cash back rewards with your Chase travel rewards. That gives you even more points to get to your favorite destinations.

  • No, Chase Ultimate Rewards points don’t expire as long as your credit card account is open and in good standing. But if you cancel your Chase rewards cards — or Chase closes your account due to inactivity — your Ultimate Rewards points will be terminated. So be sure to redeem all available points before closing your account. Similarly, when you receive notification that Chase plans on closing your credit card account, be sure to redeem points before it does so.

  • The Chase Sapphire Preferred typically requires “good” to “excellent” credit for approval. Since Chase does not publish the specific approval requirements, many people ballpark needing between a 700 to 720 score to qualify. Also, those who have applied for more than five lines of credit within the past 24 months will be denied regardless of credit score, due to Chase’s unofficial 5/24 rule. Yet, if you have a strong credit profile and few hard inquiries on your credit report within the past two years, you should qualify for the card.

  • Yes, you can redeem your Ultimate Rewards points for cash or statement credits, but your ability to do so will depend on which Chase card you used to earn them. Currently, points earned via the Sapphire travel cards, Freedom cash-back cards, and Ink business cards can be redeemed for cash at a rate of one cent per point. Yet, using Chase’s cash-like “Pay Yourself Back” feature, you can redeem points to pay off eligible purchases made in the past 90 days. Redemption rates vary by card with this method, but you’ll earn a minimum of 1.1 cent per point.

  • You’ll need between 10,000 and 40,000 points to book a free one-way economy flight through Ultimate Rewards Travel. You’ll need even more points to fly mixed class, premium economy, or business class. Keep in mind that the exact number of points you’ll need for a free flight depends on the destination, time of day, date of travel, demand, and other variable pricing factors. Also, you can redeem points for outsized value by transferring your Ultimate Rewards to one of Chase’s airline partners, but the average number of points you’ll need varies widely depending on the transfer rate and a specific airline’s rewards schedule.

ER

Eric Rosenberg

Eric Rosenberg is a finance, travel, and technology writer in Ventura, California. He is a former bank manager and corporate finance and accounting professional who left his day job in 2016 to take his online side hustle full-time. He has in depth experience writing about banking, credit cards, investing, business, and other financial topics. When away from the keyboard, Eric enjoys exploring the world and spending time with his wife and little girls. You can connect with him at Personal Profitability or EricRosenberg.com.