Top 10 Best Ways to Redeem Chase Ultimate Rewards: Free Flights & Free Hotels With Points

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Theres a reason why so many fans of credit card rewards go out of their way to get a card to earn Chase Ultimate Rewards points. Not only are their cards comparable to classic AmEx competitors,  but they have a whole slew of perks totally on their own.

Aside from being adaptable and easy to use, the points can be very economicespecially if you know how to use them properly.

The Chase Ultimate Rewards program offers a wide range of options when it comes to redeeming your points, either directly for travel or by transferring them out to one of your favorite airline or hotel loyalty programs. It is indeed a great privilege to have as many redemptions as you can while enjoying your flights. 

Here are the top 10 redemptions for your Chase Ultimate Rewards.

1. Fly United Polaris Business Class Within the U.S. for 25,000 Points

United rolled out their Polaris Business Class in late 2016, and its a vast improvement on their angled seats.

Polaris is only available on their new 777-300ER routes, which so far includes EWR to SFO. They plan to expand this service to SFO to Hong Kong on March 25, 2017.

To book Polaris, you can pay the full award price of 50,000 miles, or, if you’re lucky, you can find Saver availability. This brings the points price to just 25,000.

united polaris business class

To ensure you’re flying on Polaris, you need to look for the 777-300ER.

You’ll see the seating configuration is much more accommodating with a 1-2-1 offering aisle access to every seat as opposed to United’s old business class that had you climbing over your neighbor.

To book United Polaris with points, you can transfer 50,000 points from Chase Ultimate Rewards into your United account. It’s a 1-1 transfer.

2. Fly Singapore Suites in an A380 for 76,000 Points

Most passengers transfer their points to Singapore Airlines since they want to see for themselves what it’s like to be in Singapore Suites. Getting a romantic flight with your partner is now possible; you can pamper yourself with a bed of roses, a bottle of sparkling champagne and a dedicated flight attendant to assist your needs.

Remember that Singapore Class Suites is only available on A380 Airbus with flights to big cities like New York, Los Angeles and more.

Let’s say you book online through Singaporeairlines.com . When you choose the Saver level award from 76,000 this will only cost you 57,500 miles.

Premium seats are usually on a waitlist no matter how far you booked your ticket. You need to find a perfect available date so that you can go on with your reservation without being on the waitlist.

3. Fly Between the Continental U.S. and Hawaii for 17,500 Points

Experience nature’s beauty over the coast of Hawaii and other US Continents through your Chase Ultimate Rewards. Fly through Singapore Airlines to enjoy this one of a kind treat.

If you book first class, you will be charged 40,000 miles,. It is then 30,000 miles for business class one way and 17,500 miles for coach class one way.

Earning miles in Krisflyer program is based on the class of the ticket you will have and the distance you will fly in your desired trip. You will earn the same miles with the elite and regular reward.

  1.  First A, F: 150% miles
  2.  Business C, D, J: 125% miles
  3.  First/Business P, Z: 100%
  4.  Economy B, E, G, H, K, L, M, Q, S, T, U, V, W, Y: 100% miles

If you want to have Silver status in Krisflyer, you to collect 25,000 elite miles for a year and it will end after the following 12 months. You can get these following advantages:

  1.  25% extra miles on Singapore, SilkAir and Virgin Atlantic (but not applicable to booking class G, K, N, Q or V ).
  2.  Waitlist reservation bookings.
  3.  Lounge standby.
  4.  Exempted penalty fees for flight changes on Singapore and SilkAir flights and 50% dicount for your mileage redeposit fees.

For Gold status you need to earn 50,000 elite miles and you can get these benefits :

  1. Lounge access to Singapore Airlines, Virgin Australia, and SilkAir lounges.
  2. Special lane for check-in and boarding.
  3. No excess baggage fee for one extra baggage.

If you choose to have economy tickets and you fly mid to long haul trips very often, then Singapore Airlines Krisflyer will be a best choice for crediting your miles.

If you’re buying cheap economy tickets and flying mid- to long-haul flights on a regular basis, then KrisFlyer might be the better choice for crediting your miles. Unless you’re a mid- to top-tier elite and/or you’re buying expensive fares, you come out ahead with a distance-based formula. Just be sure to pay attention to those fare classes.

If you want to get a quick dose of points, the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card has a 50,000 points sign up bonus.

4. Fly Virgin Atlantic Upper Class to Europe for 100,000 Points

Virgin Atlantic is one of the best deals that you can get from your Chase Ultimate Rewards. Redeem your points to enjoy free flights and a first class experience.

 

Virgin Atlantic doesn’t have the same alliance as Singapore Airlines, and many people think they can’t use their miles on it. Fortunately, that’s not true — you can redeem KrisFlyer miles to fly Virgin Atlantic Upper Class!

Take note that when you are flying Virgin Atlantic and using your Singapore Krisflyer points you can only redeem these points on round trip travel. Krisflyer also has surcharges for travelling via Virgin Atlantic.

If you wish to redeem your Ultimate Rewards points, you can also directly go through Virgin Atlantic’s own Flying Club program.

You can also redeem your points through Delta Skymiles for travel on Virgin Atlantic. Delta doesn’t have surgcharges for such redemptions as long as you are traveling from US to Europe.

5. Fly Lufthansa Business Class to Europe for 70,000 United Miles

 

Lufthansa is known for their excellent service and cabin experience. In my mind, they’re right up at the top along with Cathay Pacific and Singapore Air.

The thing is, it’s a lot more difficult to book Lufthansa flights since their miles program, Miles and More, is not the most generous and doesn’t have a lot of transfer partners.

That’s why the fact that Lufthansa is a member of Star Alliance is so important. You can use United miles to book their flight, which means it’s actually doable for the first time in a very long time.

United, of course, is a transfer partner of Chase Ultimate Rewards on a 1-1 basis.

Lufthansa Business Class Booking with United Miles

To find the best Saver Awards, you typically need to book 2 weeks in advance.

The screenshot above was for 20 days from today, and showed Business Saver (but not First Saver) for 70,000 miles and an $80 surcharge.

 

If you want a one of a kind adventure, you can take a flight to the Middle East or North Africa. Your points can be redeemed on any Star Alliance participated airlines like Lufthansa , where you can fly first class for 75,000 points. You can also fly Ethiopian, Turkish, Swiss, Egypt Air or United to get to these wonderful destinations.

For Economy class, it would cost you 37,500, and 57,500 miles if you fly in business class.

6. Fly Lufthansa First Class to Europe for 110,000 United Miles

Lufthansa has one of the nicest first class cabins in the sky.

They used to offer a separate bed next to your seat, which made it one of the most relaxing and convenient ways to slip into bed on your journey to Europe.

The current layout for Lufthansa first class has huge seats, but no separate beds.

 

6. Make A Free Stopover on Your Flight for 37,500 Points

Free yourself from worrying about some added costs when you lay over during your flights. Chase Ultimate Rewards will take care of your stopovers whenever they occur, wherever you are.

British Airways offer you to add stop overs and save miles. With this offer you can stay as long as you want in your stop over destination without added cost.

If you’re flying from LA to Sydney on a direct flight and you want to have stop over in Hawaii (Honolulu) for 50,000 miles, you will only pay for 37,500 miles in economy. This means you can save 12,500 miles with this trip.

7. Fly From the U.S. to Europe for 60,000 Points Using United Miles

See the best of both worlds when you choose to fly from US to Europe through your Chase Ultimate Rewards. This is one of the best deals you can ever give to yourself.  Flights between these countries are not that cheap, but there are options out there that you can choose in order to save points.

First, you can choose United, where they charge 60,000 miles on a round-trip flight from the United States to Europe. Keep in mind that you don’t have to pay for fuel surcharges because it is included in the 60,000 miles you will be spending.

Source

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Second, you can choose Air Berlin (British Airways), where they offer 20,000 miles for a one way economy  from the US to Europe. Air Berlin doesn’t charge too much in surcharges.

If you want lesser costs, you can choose Aer Lingus from Boston to Dublin. This route will cost you 12,500 miles for a one way trip. You just need to pay surcharges.

8. Fly Around the Caribbean for 35,000 United Points

Crystal clear waters and vast green fields will greet you as you arrive in the Caribbean. Enjoy rewards flights and fly all the way to the island with this amazing trip.

If you want to explore this place, United Airlines will only charge you 35,000 miles for a round trip booking.

United has the MileagePlus Excursionist Perk that started in October 2016. With this, you can have stopovers and can visit two Caribbean islands for the price of one at no added cost.

You will also be able to find cheaper deals to the Caribbean depending on your origin. However, if you want to have stop overs and stay there for a while, Mileage Plus miles would be a great option.

9. Fly to Australia or New Zealand for 80,000 United Points 

Go down under and into the middle earth with this incredible reward.  Get it only from Chase Ultimate Rewards.

If you want to book a round-trip ticket from US to New Zealand or Australia in economy class, you just need  80,000 Mileage miles. This makes it an amazing deal. However, flying to Australia and New Zealand is a bit more expensive than going to Oceania region using your United miles.

10. Fly From Los Angeles to Tokyo for 25,000 British Aiways Points

Ever wonder what Tokyo is like? It is now possible only from Chase Ultimate Rewards.

Flying from Los Angeles to Tokyo in economy class is 25,000 miles. It is also worth noting that there’s less than $35 in tax fees on these tickets each way. This same trip would cost you 50,000 miles in Business class and 75,000 miles if flying First class.

These aren’t good premium redeeming options especially if you are having a connecting flight to other destinations (whereas British Airways charges flights separately.). It’s still a decent deal though if you are really want to experience Japan.

Chase Ultimate Rewards airline transfer partners are:

  • British Airways
  • Korean Air
  • Singapore Airlines
  • Southwest Airlines
  • United Airlines
  • Virgin Atlantic

United Airlines

A Saver Level flight anywhere in the United States costs just 25,000 United miles. You could redeem 50,000 United miles for two round-trip flights.

Southwest Airlines

You could easily get 45,000 points for two round-trip flights anywhere in the continental U.S., or between the U.S. and the Caribbean. Because Southwest flights are usually inexpensive, you can book a flight often on sale for 6,000 points or less.

Chase Airline Transfer Partners as of March 2017

British Airway Avios

If you’re on a European vacation, chances are you’ll be hopping between countries. We recommend that you use Avios to find short flights within Europe at a great transfer rate. A lot of popular routes only cost 4,500 Avios points one-way with no fuel surcharge.

Air France Flying Blue

Our favorite use of Flying Blue is to fly from the continental United States to Hawaii, Central America, or the Caribbean for only 30,000 miles round-trip.

They also release promo awards at the start of each month, where you can snag great deals for certain routes. For example, in October 2016, there was a deal for Washington, D.C. to Europe round-trip for only 37,500 points in economy.


Singapore Krisflyer

You can always book online because you’ll receive a 15% discount from the reward rates shown. Singapore Airlines also allows one free stopover on a round-trip Saver flight or 2 free on a Standard Award flight, which will allow you to visit a new destination. For example, you can go from Los Angeles to Australia, with a stopover in Tokyo, for 50,000 miles in economy.

United Mileage Plus Miles

One good thing about United is that it never charges a surcharge, not even on partner airlines. Take advantage of United’s generous stopover and open-jaw policies in order to visit more places on one trip. You can book one stopover and 2 open-jaws on a round-trip on an award ticket for no additional miles.

Southwest Rapid Rewards

Use this transfer partner to book flights within the U.S. The value is especially good on the Wanna Get Away flights, with many routes as low as 4,500 points one-way. And you don’t pay any taxes or surcharges for domestic flights either, except for the $5.60 Security Fee in each direction. Southwest also offers very low rates to Mexico, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean for a bit more in taxes.

 Virgin Atlantic Miles

Booking domestic partner flights could be a good value. For example, you can fly domestic within Japan (on All Nippon Airways), Australia (on Virgin Australia), New Zealand (on Air New Zealand), and South Africa (on South African Airways) for 15,000 or 20,000 points round-trip.

Korean Air Skypass

Fly to Hawaii, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands for as low as 25,000 points round-trip with no fuel surcharges. Round-trip flights within Europe go for 25,000 points round-trip as well. Korean Air also allows for 1 stopover and 1 open-jaw, so it’s a great opportunity to add an additional destination on any of these trips at no extra cost.

 Ultimate Rewards Hotel Transfers are:

  • Hyatt Gold Passport
  • IHG
  • Marriott Rewards
  • Ritz-Carlton Reward

Marriott

You can spend eight nights (your fifth night is free) in a Category 1 Marriott property for only 42,000 points. PointSaver rewards start at only 6,000 points per night for Category 1 properties.

Hyatt

A standard room in a Category 1 Hyatt property costs only 5,000 points per night. Those 45,000 points could net you nine free hotel nights at certain properties worldwide.

Chase Hotel Transfer Partners as of March 2017

Hyatt Gold Passport

Redeeming for free nights at Hyatt starts at just 5,000 points/night for a Category 1 Standard Room, while a night in a Category 7 hotel will cost you 30,000 points. You also have the option to pay in points and cash, which is great if you want to save some points. You can also use points to upgrade to a Club room.

IHG Rewards Club

Point redemption starts at 10,000 points per night for a Category 1 hotel and up to 60,000 points per night for a Category 11 hotel. IHG also lets you combine cash + points. For example, for a Category 5 hotel, you can pay 30,000 points, or 25,000 points + $40, or 20,000 points + $70.

Marriott Rewards

Marriott properties are structured from Category 1 (7,500 points/night) to Category 9 (45,000 points/night). Then there are Ritz Carlton hotels that go from Tier 1 (30,000 points/night) to Tier 5 (70,000 points/night). And if you use points to book 4 consecutive nights, you get the 5th night free.

Ritz Carlton Rewards

Point redemption starts at 30,000 points for Tier 1 and goes to 70,000 points for Tier 5. And if you use points to book 4 consecutive nights, you get the 5th night free. One thing to beware of: because Ritz Carlton falls under the Marriott brand portfolio, you can’t belong to both programs. You can, however, change your membership from one to the other within the same account and keep your point balance. The difference is that there may be some promotions from time to time for the different programs.

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Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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