This Might Be the Best Travel Rewards Program (No Matter What Airline You Fly)

By Summer Hull. Last updated 14 November 2017. 0 comments

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There are so many different types of reward programs that offer miles and points that it can be very difficult for those newer to the world of rewards credit cards and (almost) free travel to know where to start. If you're interested in diving in, a very good place to consider starting is with the Chase Ultimate Rewards program. These points are flexible, valuable, and easy to earn.

What Is a Chase Ultimate Rewards Point?

A Chase Ultimate Rewards point is a credit card rewards point earned via a Chase credit card that falls under the Ultimate Rewards umbrella. Right now that includes the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and the Chase Ink Business Preferred.

Chase Sapphire Preferred

Earn 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases worldwide. Also, get 25% more value when you redeem for travel via Ultimate Rewards. Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95.

Chase Ink Business Preferred

Earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent in combined purchases in the certain categories each account anniversary year, 1 point per dollar on other purchases. The annual fee is $95.

Ultimate Rewards Mall

Another great way to earn Ultimate Rewards points is via the Ultimate Rewards Mall. This is an online shopping portal that is open only to those with an Ultimate Rewards earning card. In this "online mall" you can earn bonus points for online purchases at retailers such as Home Depot, Sears, Kohl's, Pottery Barn, REI, Apple, and J.Crew. You click via provided links from the Ultimate Rewards Mall to your favorite retailer's site and then make your purchase like normal. For doing so, you earn a bonus number of Ultimate Rewards points that range anywhere from one extra point per dollar to 25 extra points per dollar.

At 10 extra points per dollar this means that your $100 online purchase at Kohl's goes from earning 100 points to earning the 100 points it normally would on your card plus 1,000 bonus points for making the purchase at 10x via the Ultimate Rewards Shopping Mall. This is a great way to earn a ton more Ultimate Rewards points in a hurry!

Redeeming Ultimate Rewards

You can redeem the points at a one point equals one cent value for merchandise such as a digital camera, retailer gift cards to places like Gap, as a direct deposit into a Chase account, at Amazon.com, or as a statement credit.

But redeeming for travel offer you more value.

First, you get an additional 25% off travel redemptions through Ultimate Rewards.

But the best redemption value comes when you transfer them at a 1:1 ratio to a hotel or airline partner such as United MileagePlus, Hyatt Gold Passport, Southwest Rapid Rewards, Korean Air Skypass, Marriott Rewards, IHG Rewards, Ritz-Carlton Rewards, and Virgin Atlantic.

Many people, myself included, get far more than the one cent per point value when you can transfer to some of those programs listed above. For example, via Hyatt Gold Passport you can book a room on the ski slopes at the Hyatt Escala Lodge in Canyons Mountain Resort for just 15,000 points per night. During peak ski season nights, rooms at this hotel can go for $400 - $500 per night, so clearly you get more than one cent per point value when you use your Ultimate Rewards points in this manner.

Even better, you can combine points with spouses or domestic partners!

Ultimate Rewards points, when used to their maximum potential, can bring otherwise unattainable luxury travel expenses like ocean-front resorts, first or business class flights, and more into the realm of very possible. Now get out there and start turning your everyday purchases into a pile of valuable Ultimate Rewards points!

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This Might Be the Best Travel Rewards Program (No Matter What Airline You Fly)

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