Chase Ultimate Rewards Optimized

Chase Ultimate Rewards is a versatile points currency that is highly prized by savvy travelers and credit card enthusiasts. This program offers multiple ways to earn and redeem points, making it a top choice for those looking to maximize their rewards. This comprehensive guide will walk you through all you need to know to optimize your use of Chase Ultimate Reward Points.

1. Understanding the Chase Ultimate Rewards Program

Chase Ultimate Rewards is a credit card rewards program that allows Chase cardholders to earn points on every purchase they make. These points are highly valuable due to their flexibility and numerous transfer options.

Once you are approved for a Chase card that earns Ultimate Rewards, you are automatically enrolled in the program. The amount of points you accumulate depends on which card you use and the category of the purchase. Each Ultimate Rewards card offers bonus categories that allow you to earn between 2x and 5x points per dollar spent on the card.

These points can be redeemed in various ways, with the most valuable option being travel. Other redemption options like merchandise, statement credits, or gift cards might give you less value for your points.

2. Cards That Earn Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

The number of points you earn depends on the Chase card you use and its bonus categories. The best strategy to maximize your earning potential is to choose a combination of cards that ensures every purchase you make earns rewards.

Here are some of the most popular Chase cards that earn Ultimate Rewards Points:

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

This card is popular due to its generous welcome bonus offer and elevated earning on travel, dining, and Lyft purchases.

Chase Freedom Unlimited

This card was already a great option when it offered 1.5% cash back on all purchases. However, it has become even better with bonus rewards on travel booked through Chase, as well as at restaurants and drugstores. If you already have a Chase card that earns Ultimate Rewards, you can convert the Chase Freedom from earning cash back to Ultimate Rewards.

Ink Business Premier Credit Card

This is a business card that earns 5% cash back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 2.5% cash back on purchases of $5,000 or more, and 2% cash back on all other purchases. Again, you can convert this to an Ultimate Rewards card.

3. Value of Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

The value of your Chase Ultimate Rewards points will depend on how you choose to redeem them. If you choose to redeem your points for cash back or statement credits, each point is typically worth 1 cent. However, if you use your points to book travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal or transfer them to a travel partner, you can often get a higher value per point.

For example, if you use your Chase points to book flights, hotels, cruises, tours, or rental cars, you can often get a higher value per point. If you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred card, your points are worth 1.25 cents each, while Chase Sapphire Reserve cardholders get a higher valuation of 1.5 cents per point.

4. Transferability of Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

One of the major advantages of Chase Ultimate Rewards points is their transferability. You can transfer your points to some of the best hotel and airline partners in the business. This flexibility makes Chase Ultimate Rewards one of the most valuable points currencies available.

Despite increasing competition from American Express Membership Rewards, Citi ThankYou points, and Capital One miles, Chase Ultimate Rewards continues to hold its place as one of the most valuable points currencies in the world.

5. How to Earn More Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

There are multiple ways to earn additional Chase Ultimate Rewards points beyond the regular spending on your credit card. These include:

Personal and Business Credit Cards

Chase offers several personal and business credit cards that earn Chase Ultimate Rewards. Each card offers different benefits and earning rates, and they often provide a welcome bonus after meeting minimum spending requirements.

Shop Through Chase

Shop Through Chase is a shopping portal that can help boost your Chase Ultimate Rewards balance. Instead of shopping directly with an online retailer, log into your Chase account and navigate to the Shop Through Chase portal. You will earn additional Chase Ultimate Rewards points on top of the points you would normally earn from spending on your credit card.


Chase gives you the opportunity to earn bonus points when referring other customers to apply for a Chase credit card. The referral bonuses and offers vary by card, and not all cards are eligible for referral bonuses.

Chase Offers

Chase periodically emails cardholders with targeted offers. These offers can include increased earning on categories that are not usually bonus categories on their respective cards.

Special Chase Ultimate Rewards Promotions

From time to time, Chase offers additional promotions for new and existing customers to earn additional Ultimate Rewards points.

6. Redeeming Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

There are various ways to redeem your Chase Ultimate Rewards points. You can use them for virtually any kind of travel booking like flights, hotels, cruises, tours, and rental cars. Moreover, you can redeem your points for cash back, gift cards, Amazon purchases, Apple purchases, and even access to special events if you have an eligible Chase card.

7. Best Ways to Redeem Your Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

To optimize your Chase Points, it is crucial to understand the best ways to redeem them. Here are some tips:

Transfer Your Points to Airline and Hotel Partners

One of the best ways to get the most value out of your Chase points is to transfer them to one of Chase’s airline or hotel partners. Chase currently has a total of 13 transfer partners — 10 airlines and three hotel chains.

Airline Partners:

  1. AerClub, loyalty programme of Aer Lingus
  2. Air Canada Aeroplan
  3. British Airways Executive Club
  4. Emirates Skywards
  5. Flying Blue AIR FRANCE KLM
  6. Iberia Plus
  7. JetBlue TrueBlue
  8. Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer
  9. Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards
  10. United MileagePlus
  11. Virgin Atlantic Flying Club​​

Hotel Partners:

  1. IHG® One Rewards
  2. World of Hyatt
  3. Marriott Bonvoy​​

Book Travel Through Chase Ultimate Rewards Portal

Another great way to redeem your points is by booking travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal. You can use your points to book flights, hotels, car rentals, and more. The value you get for each point can vary, but it can often be higher than redeeming them for cash back or statement credits.

8. Special Features of Chase Ultimate Rewards

Chase Ultimate Rewards also offers some unique features that can enhance the value of your points. For example, with the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and Chase Sapphire Reserve, your points are worth 25% and 50% more, respectively, when you redeem them for travel through the Chase portal. This means that if you transfer points from another eligible Chase card to a Sapphire card, you can get more value for them.

9. Chase’s 5/24 Rule

Chase has an unwritten rule known as the 5/24 rule. According to this rule, if you have opened five or more personal credit cards across all banks in the past 24 months, you will not be approved for a new Chase card. This rule is important to consider when planning your credit card application strategy.

10. Conclusion

Mastering Chase Ultimate Rewards can seem complex, but with a little research and planning, you can maximize the value of your points. By understanding how to earn and redeem points, you can make the most of this flexible rewards program. Whether you’re a frequent traveler, a small business owner, or just looking for a great rewards credit card, Chase Ultimate Rewards has something to offer.