Chase Ultimate Rewards: A Beginner’s Guide


The Chase Ultimate Rewards program is a valuable incentive for cardholders. But maybe you haven’t yet applied for a Chase credit card or are unsure which option gives you the biggest bang for your buck. Or perhaps you’re already a cardholder and are looking to maximize your earning potential.

Chase Ultimate Rewards

Either way, we’ve got you covered in this comprehensive guide that pulls back the curtain so you can get a closer look at the inner workings of Chase Ultimate Rewards.

What is Chase Ultimate Rewards?

Chase Ultimate Rewards is a loyalty program offered by Chase Bank for certain credit card holders. Members can earn points through credit card spending, promotions and bonuses, or transferring points from other programs.

These points can be redeemed for rewards like cash back, travel, merchandise, or transferred to partner loyalty programs. The program offers a range of options for earning and redeeming points, as well as additional benefits and perks.

How to Earn Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

There are several ways to earn Chase Ultimate Rewards points and cash back, but it depends on which product you choose.

Let’s take a closer look at the earning potential by card type:

Chase Cash Back Cards

CHASE FREEDOM FlexChase Freedom UnlimitedChase Ink Business Cash
Cashback Rewards5% on purchases in select bonus categories (up to $1,500).1.5% unlimited cash back on all purchases.5% on select business expenses (up to $25,000)

2% on purchases at gas stations and restaurants

1% on all other purchases
Annual Fee$0 annual fee$0 annual fee$0 annual fee
Interest Rates16.74% – 25.49%.14.99% – 23.74%14.99% – 20.99%
Liability / ProtectionZero liability for unauthorized charges with extended warranty protection.Zero liability for unauthorized charges with extended warranty protection.Zero liability for unauthorized charges with extended warranty protection.
PromotionsSpend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening and get $200 cash back or 15,000 reward pointsSpend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening and get $200 cash back or 20,000 reward points

5% back on grocery store purchases up to $12,000
Spend $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening and get $500 cash back or 50,000 reward points

5% cash back on purchases at office supply stores and on internet, cable, and phone services up to $25,000
Introduction Offer0% intro APR for the first 15 months on all purchases0% intro APR for the first 15 months on all purchases0% APR for first 12 months on all purchases and balance transfers

Chase Travel Cards

Chase Sapphire PreferredChase Sapphire ReserveChase Ink Business Preferred
Cashback RewardsEarn 2x Chase points on travel and diningEarn 3x Chase points on travel and diningEarn 3x Chase points on select business purchases (up to $150,000)
Annual Fee$95 annual fee (waived the first year)$550 annual fee, $75 per authorized user$95 annual fee
Interest Rates15.99% – 22.99%16.99% – 23.99%15.99% – 20.99%
Liability / ProtectionTravel and purchase coverage

Travel cancellation insurance up to $20,000

Delayed baggage insurance

Car Rental insurance
Travel and purchase coverage

Travel cancellation insurance up to $20,000

Delayed baggage insurance

Car Rental insurance
Travel and purchase coverage

Travel cancellation insurance up to $20,000

Delayed baggage insurance

Car Rental insurance

Cell protection up to $600 per claim for both damage and theft
Cardholder PerksPoints redeemable for an additional 25% when used for travelPriority Pass Select lounge access

$300 annual travel credit

Fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck
Points redeemable for an additional 25% when used for travel
PromotionsEarn 60,000 sign-up bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months from account openingEarn 50,000 sign-up bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months from account openingEarn 100,000 sign-up bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening

Other Ways to Earn Ultimate Rewards Points

Beyond swiping your credit card to make purchases, there are numerous other ways to earn Chase Ultimate Rewards points.

Shop through Chase

You can earn even more bonus points by shopping through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal. Stores can be filtered by category, or you can conduct a keyword search. Once you locate the store you’re looking for, the extra cash back percentage will appear on the icon, and you can proceed with your shopping by clicking the “Shop Now” button.

The Shop through Chase portal homepage also includes seasonal offers with bonus/cash back incentives of up to eight percent.

There are no earning caps, and once you’ve completed your transaction, points will appear on the dashboard.

Refer-a-Friend Program

You can also earn extra cash back through the Refer-a-Friend Program. If you invite friends, and they are approved, you’ll earn cash back simply for getting them to sign up.

To start inviting friends, all you need to do is send a unique link via Twitter, Facebook, or email, and it only takes a few seconds of your time.

Rules vary by credit card, so it’s best to read the cardholder agreement to learn about bonus amounts and referral limits.

See also: Credit Cards That Reward You for Referring Your Friends

Cardholder Bonuses

While it varies by card, many of Chase’s credit cards offer lucrative cardholder bonuses. For example, some offer a hefty sum of sign-up bonus points or cash back for spending a certain amount within three months of opening an account.

Others extend a set amount of cash back simply by adding an authorized user. Since these introductory credit card offers tend to change over time, it’s best to visit to learn more about the current promotion.

Couple on a motorbike

How to Redeem Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

When it comes to using your Chase Ultimate Rewards points, the options at your fingertips are as varied as they are valuable. Understanding the differences in redemption value across cash back, travel, gift cards, and shopping with points (such as through can help you get the most out of every point you’ve earned. Here’s a breakdown to guide your redemption strategy.

Cash Back and Statement Credits

Redeeming your Chase Ultimate Rewards points for cash back is a straightforward process, offering a practical way to use your points. You can choose to receive a direct deposit into your bank account or apply your points as a statement credit to reduce your credit card balance. Each point is worth 1 cent when used in this manner, providing a transparent and predictable value.

Opting for a statement credit is particularly appealing because it allows you to directly offset purchases on your statement, essentially erasing them from your bill. This method combines the ease of cash back with the added flexibility of using your rewards to pay down your credit card balance, making it an efficient way to manage your spending.

While cash back and statement credits offer simplicity and immediate utility, they might not always deliver the highest value per point. However, for those prioritizing straightforward, hassle-free redemptions without the need to analyze transfer options or travel bookings, this approach can be incredibly rewarding.

Travel Redemptions

Travel enthusiasts often find the greatest value in using their points toward travel bookings. Through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, points can take on more value; for example, with the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, you can enjoy a 25% bonus when booking travel through the portal, effectively making each point worth 1.25 cents.

The Chase Sapphire Reserve goes even further, offering a 50% bonus and valuing each point at 1.5 cents when used for travel. The real magic happens with point transfers to airline and hotel partners, where savvy travelers can sometimes redeem points for international business and first-class tickets, pushing their value to several cents per point.

Gift Cards

At first glance, gift cards seem like a straightforward and appealing option, allowing you to convert points into spending power at your favorite retailers. While Chase occasionally offers gift cards at discounted rates, this method generally aligns with the standard 1 cent per point value, mirroring the cash back option. It’s a solid choice for gifts or personal use, but doesn’t necessarily maximize value.

Shopping with Points

For those who enjoy the convenience of online shopping, Chase offers the option to use points directly on After linking your Chase card to your Amazon account, points can be applied at checkout to purchase a wide array of products.

However, it’s important to note that this redemption method values your points at less than 1 cent per point, making it one of the less efficient uses of your rewards. While the ease of shopping with points is undeniable, you might find better value in other redemption avenues if you’re looking to stretch your points further.

Who are the Chase Ultimate Rewards Transfer Partners?

1:1 Chase transfer partners include:

Airline Partners

  • Aer Lingus
  • Air Canada Aeroplan
  • British Airways
  • Emirates Skywards
  • Flying Blue (Air France/KLM)
  • Iberia
  • Jet Blue
  • Singapore Airlines
  • Southwest Airlines
  • United MileagePlus
  • Virgin Atlantic

Hotel Loyalty Programs

  • IHG Rewards Club
  • Marriott Rewards
  • World of Hyatt

But keep in mind that once your transfer points to partner programs, you can’t transfer them back. So, you want to be sure that your decision to book is final.

Chase Ultimate Rewards Travel Portal

The Chase Ultimate Rewards Travel Portal is an online tool that allows Chase cardholders to redeem points to book car rentals, flights, hotels, event tickets, and tours.

If you have multiple Chase credit cards that offer Chase Ultimate Rewards points, you can transfer those points to the credit card with the highest redeeming value.

Here’s how the Chase Ultimate Rewards cards stack up to one another:

Card typePoint Value
Chase Freedom$0.01
Chase Freedom Unlimited$0.01
Chase Ink Business Cash$0.01
Chase Ink Business Preferred$0.0125
Chase Ink Business Unlimited$0.01
Chase Sapphire Preferred$0.0125
Chase Sapphire Reserve$0.01

Accessing the Portal

To access the portal, you will first need to have a credit card that earns you Chase Ultimate Rewards points. If you do, all you need to do is log into your Chase account. Once you’re logged in, you should see the Chase Ultimate Rewards box on either the far right or left side of the home screen. Click on the box, and it will take you to the portal.

Once on the portal, you will see a Use Points tab at the top of the screen. Click on this tab and you will be given the following options:

  • Get Cash Back
  • Shop Gift Cards
  • Use Points to Shop
  • Explore and Book Travel

The Explore and Book Travel option is one of the most used aspects of the portal because it saves people money while doing what they love most: traveling.

Experience Portal

The Experience Portal (you may also have heard of Exclusive Events) is another way cardholders can use their points. It’s truly a portal you’ll want to bookmark on your computer and make a habit of checking every day, as the site is updated regularly.

On the Experience Portal, you will find many ways you can use your Chase Ultimate Rewards points, including:

  • Sports tickets: Get tickets to some of the most exciting sports events in the world. Whether they are ring-side or on-field, you won’t be disappointed you spent your points here.
  • Entertainment: Whether it’s a new film, concert, or play, you can enjoy world-class entertainment with your Chase Ultimate Rewards points.
  • Fine-dining and drinking: Get access to private dinners and tasting events, or enjoy a drink at a remote city-top bar.

Of course, the value of many opportunities through the Chase Experience Portal is subjective, and it may be difficult to understand why an event is worth what it is. If this is something you’re interested in, make sure it’s an event that money can’t buy and that you couldn’t imagine passing up.

Many people have experienced one-in-a-lifetime events through Chase, and did so by patiently waiting for an opportunity that made them want to jump up into the air.

Chase Ultimate Rewards Points Expiration

Most rewards programs offered through other credit cards cancel any points you have accumulated if your accounts are inactive for 6 to 18 months. Note: An account is considered inactive when there aren’t any payments or purchases on it for a certain period of time.

As long as your credit card is open and in good standing, Chase will not cancel any points you have accrued. However, should you decide to cancel your account, you will lose the points. But, if you just want to switch to a different Chase credit card, you can save your points to that account, even a Chase card with no annual fee.

Chase Ultimate Rewards Phone Number

It’s a different number than the phone number printed on the back of your credit card.

To reach the Chase Ultimate Rewards department, call 1-866-951-6592. Call this number for any Chase Ultimate Rewards questions you may have. If you have any other questions related to your credit card or account, call the printed number on the back.

Bottom Line

By selecting a Chase card with a lucrative bonus offer and hefty earning potential, you can load your wallet with cash back and save a bundle on travel. But before applying, read the fine print to ensure the costs of carrying the credit card won’t outweigh the benefits.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much are Chase Ultimate Rewards points worth?

Chase Ultimate Rewards points are worth around 1 cent each when redeemed for cash back. Their value increases to 1.25 to 1.5 cents each through the Ultimate Rewards travel portal, depending on your card.

However, you can potentially get even more value by transferring points to partner loyalty programs and redeeming them for travel or other rewards. For international business and first class flights, some people redeem their points for over 10 cents per point.

Do Chase Ultimate Rewards points expire?

No, points will not expire as long as you keep your credit card account open. If you close your account before redeeming or transferring your rewards, you will lose those points. Remember to use or transfer your points before closing your account to make sure you don’t lose any value.

How do I get the most out of my Chase Ultimate Rewards points?

Transferring your Chase Ultimate Rewards points to airline and hotel partners is probably the best way to get the most value from your points. As mentioned, you can get a redemption value of 10 cents or more on certain business class and first class flights when traveling internationally.

However, you can also get some great redemptions when booking cheap domestic flights on Chase’s travel portal.

Getting the best redemption value for your points will depend on how much time you’re willing to spend finding the best deals. It also depends on how flexible you are with your travel plans.

How do I transfer my Chase Ultimate Rewards points to a partner program?

To transfer points to airline and hotel partners, log in to your Chase account and select Ultimate Rewards. In the menu, choose “Transfer to Travel Partners” and select the partner you want to transfer points to.

If it’s your first time transferring to this partner, you’ll need to link your hotel or airline loyalty account. Make sure the name on your loyalty account matches the name on your credit card.

Is there a limit to the number of Chase Ultimate Rewards points I can earn?

No, there are no overall limits to the number of Ultimate Rewards points that you can earn in a year or over the lifetime of your membership.

Allison Martin
Meet the author

Allison Martin is a syndicated financial writer, author, and Certified Financial Education Instructor (CFEI). She has written about personal finance for almost ten years and holds a master's degree in Accounting from the University of South Florida.