Chase Ultimate Rewards Program Review

The Ultimate Rewards Program, by Chase, is a great way to earn bonuses while spending on everyday purchases. Points can be used for merchandise, gift cards, entertainment and more. To get started, all you need is a participating Chase credit card.

For more information, you can visit this page.

✓ 11 transfer partners
✗ Minimum number of points required for redemption
✓ Points never expire
✗Earning rate may vary based on amount spent
✓ Travel tool offers discounts
✗ Few choices of credit cards

Earning Reward Points   

By having a participating Chase credit card, you will earn points for every dollar spent. These points do not expire as long as your card remains open. If you cancel your account, you will lose the points you have not redeemed.

Ways to earn points:

  • Having an eligible Chase credit card
    • Chase Sapphire Preferred
      • Sign-Up Bonus: 40,000 points
      • 2x points on travel and dining and 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases
      • 5,000 points after adding the first authorized user
    • Ink Plus
      • Sign-Up Bonus: 50,000 points
      • 5x points per dollar on the first $50,000 spent at office supply stores and cellular phone, landline, internet and cable TV services each year
      • 2x points per dollar on the first $50,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and hotel accommodations
      • 1 point on all other purchases

Spending Your Reward Points   

The Chase Ultimate Rewards program offers a variety of redemption options. Below we have listed the types of reward you can redeem and how much each point is worth. If you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred card, you will get 20% off travel when redeemed for airfare, hotel stays, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example: a $500 flight will only cost you 40,000 points ($100 in savings).

  • Travel: 1 cent per point (1.2 cent per dollar with Chase Sapphire)
  • 1 cent per point
  • Statement Credit and Cash Back: 1 cent per point
  • Gift Cards: 1 cent per point

Here is a great tip to maximize your rewards for travel
Since you only get 1 cent per dollar for travel from Chase, try transferring your points to a frequent travel program. By moving your points to the Southwest Rapid Rewards Program, you can maximize your rewards. If you use your points to redeem for Wanna Get Away Fares, each point varies from 1.59 cent to 1.46 cent.

Frequently Asked Questions   

Q1. Can I combine the points I earn from other Chase Ultimate Rewards cards?
Yes, you can move points but only to another Chase card with Ultimate Rewards belonging to you, your spouse or domestic partner, as applicable.

Q2. What are the transfer partners?
Transfer partners include: Virgin Flying Club, Amtrak Guest Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards, Hyatt Gold Passport, Mileage Plus, IHG Rewards Club, Singapore Airlines KrisFyer, Southwest Rapid Rewards, British Airways Executive Club, Korean Air Skypass, and Marriott Rewards.

Q3. Are baggage fees included in the price of flights?
No, they are not included but certain airlines may charge extra for baggage fees when you check in.

Q4. What is the minimum number of points needed to transfer my points?
Points can be transferred only in 1,000 increments.

Q5. Is it possible to be prohibited from earning or using points?
Yes, you will not be able to earn or redeem your points if you do not make the minimum payment on your account within 30 days of the due date, you are suspected to have engaged in fraudulent activity or if you misuse the program in anyway.

Q6. Is it possible to lose points?
Since your points never expire, they will not go away as long as your account is still open.

Q7. Where do I redeem for travel rewards?
To cash in for travel rewards, you must use the Chase booking tool or transfer your points to a frequent travel program.

Q8. Is there a discount if I redeem my points through the Chase booking tool?
No. Unlike other reward programs, using Chase’s booking tool will not yield any special bonuses.

Concluding Remarks   

The Chase Ultimate Rewards Program does not offer many credit card options to earn points with. In addition, the credit cards that are eligible for this program costs $95 per year. While the point value from redeeming different categories of rewards are nearly the same, cardholders can earn 20% more on travel rewards if they have a Chase Sapphire credit card. Overall, those who enroll in Chase’s Ultimate Rewards Program can get a better deal on travel with their points if they transfer to the Southwest Rapid Rewards program at a 1:1 ratio.

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