When it comes to travel rewards currencies, many consider Chase Ultimate Rewards to be the best. Of course, American Express Membership Rewards and Citi ThankYou Rewards are strong rivals, but I find that Chase offers a well-rounded suite of hotel and airline travel partners. Especially for beginners to the travel rewards space, Chase is one of the better places to start off, as you have plenty of redemption options and can easily get great value from your points.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is currently offering a very generous 80,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on the card within the first three months. Of course, you could redeem the points through Chase’s travel portal, which would see those 80,000 points worth a fixed $1,000 toward your next vacation. But, transferring them to partner programs will typically get you significantly more value.
Chase partners with 14 different travel providers — 11 airlines and three hotels — where points transfer at a one-to-one ratio. Chase Ultimate Rewards points are worth about 2 cents apiece, based on the frequent traveler website The Points Guy’s valuations. In other words, when those same 80,000 points are used more strategically, they can be worth about $1,600.
Airlines Aer Lingus AerClub Air Canada Aeroplan Air France-KLM Flying Blue British Airways Executive Club Emirates Skywards Iberia Plus JetBlue TrueBlue Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Southwest Rapid Rewards United MileagePlus Virgin Atlantic Flying Club Hotels World of Hyatt IHG Rewards Club Marriott Bonvoy But how can you use your points and where can you go? I’ll show you how I recently redeemed about 80,000 points for a free trip to the Caribbean. Of course, this is just one example of travel options when it comes to using your Chase Ultimate Rewards points.
Learn more about earning 80,000 points with the Chase Sapphire Preferred.
How I redeemed 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points for a free Caribbean vacation My family loves visiting the Caribbean. Living in Boston, the winters can be cold, so escaping the harsh winter for some sun is a common occurrence in our world. And since my husband and I had to put our 10-year anniversary getaway on hold two years ago, we were looking for a long weekend trip — without the kids.
Hyatt is our typical go-to chain thanks to my husband’s Globalist elite status. And, we’ve found that Hyatt has some phenomenal properties throughout the Caribbean and Mexico. Perhaps best of all, Hyatt is a transfer partner of Chase Ultimate Rewards, and it’s one of the more favorable options since its award chart requires significantly fewer points to redeem for a free night’s stay. For example, a Hyatt property might charge 25,000 points per night whereas a comparable Marriott, Hilton or IHG property will charge 50,000 points in the same resort destination. And since points transfer at a one-to-one ratio from Chase to Hyatt, your points can go further.
One of our favorite Hyatt properties is the family-friendly Hyatt Ziva Cancun, but since we’re planning to have no kids in tow, we settled on the adults-only Hyatt Zilara Cancun — the adults-only version of the property we love so dearly.
The Hyatt Zilara Cancun typically costs 25,000 World of Hyatt points per night for two guests (or 21,000 points on off-peak dates or 29,000 points on peak dates). For our upcoming vacation, we were able to book three nights during off-peak dates, which would have otherwise cost $568 per night. At just 63,000 points for the whole stay — as opposed to paying more than $1,700 — this is a great usage of our points and makes our points worth a terrific 2.7 cents apiece.
And since it’s an all-inclusive property, all of our food and drinks are covered — even when using points. There’s also no resort fee at this particular property, so our final bill will truly be $0 at checkout.
With hotel rooms secure, it was time to look into flights. I ended up booking with Southwest Airlines — another Chase Ultimate Rewards transfer partner — since I currently hold a Southwest Companion Pass thanks to my Southwest credit card. With this pass, another passenger can fly with me an unlimited number of times for free — they just have to pay the taxes and fees on the ticket.
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How 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points got me a free trip to the Caribbean
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