As of Sunday until Sept. 30, Chase allows Sapphire cardholders the ability to pay yourself back with points for purchases at grocery stores, home improvement stores, and dining establishments.
You’ll be able to use your points at the same rate you can for travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal – 1.25 cents each if you hold the Sapphire Preferred Card and 1.5 cents each if you hold the Sapphire Reserve.
That means the 60,000 point welcome offer bonus after spending $4,000 in the first three months of card membership on the Sapphire Preferred card would be worth $750 when using the pay yourself back feature. And the 50,000 point welcome offer bonus for the same spending requirement would be worth the same $750 because of the higher point redemption value.
When it comes to travel, these redemption rates can provide a ton of value. But at a time when travel is largely off the table, these new redemption benefits can also provide a ton of value – all be it different and not travel related.
We’ll highlight how this works and how you can take advantage of it to drastically lower your grocery bill, restaurant tab, or home improvement spending.
Using Chase Ultimate Rewards to Pay for Groceries, Restaurants, or Hardware Stores
If you have a stash of Chase Ultimate Rewards points – or even if you decide to open a Chase Sapphire card as a new member – you can now use your hard-earned points at the grocery store, grocery delivery services like Instacart and even restaurants through September 30. Hardware and home improvement stores work, too.
If you are familiar with how the Capital One Purchase Eraser feature works, this new Pay Yourself Back feature from Chase will work very similarly.
First things first: All you need to do is make a purchase at a grocery store (or one of the other Pay Your Self Back categories like restaurants and home improvement stores) using your Sapphire card.
After making that purchase, you can simply log into Ultimate Rewards on desktop or through the Chase mobile app and select “Pay Yourself Back” from the drop-down menu.
Once here, you will be able to select from recent eligible transactions up to 90 days prior and choose to redeem points for all or a portion of the purchase.
Since this works for both grocery stores and delivery services like Instacart, you can see that I am able to select both transactions below and use Chase Ultimate Rewards points to remove them from my statement.
After selecting a transaction you want to redeem Chase points for, you’ll be given the option to use points to cover all or part of the transaction. Once you make that decision, you can hit “Confirm & Submit.”
How to Earn Chase Ultimate Rewards Points
There are many methods and credit cards that will help you earn Ultimate Rewards points. But in order to take advantage of this new Pay Yourself Back promotion through the end of September, you must hold either the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card or the Chase Sapphire Reserve. Though Chase has said other cards will get this benefit in the future.
To start with, The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is one of our favorites. It earns 2x points per dollar spent on dining out at restaurants and travel expenses. And through the end of June, it also earns 3x points per dollar spent at the grocery store on up to $1,500 spent.
You’ll also earn 60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after spending $4,000 in the first three months of card membership. And considering the card has only a $95 annual fee, you can come out way ahead on the initial investment if you use the points for groceries, restaurants, or even at home improvement stores.
When you use them this way, they will be worth $750. That means if you can get approved for the card and have the financial means to meet the $4,000 spending requirement in three months to earn the bonus, you can come out $655 ahead on your grocery bill after subtracting the $95 annual fee.
Even if you have no travel planned for the foreseeable future, this is a heck of a deal.
Click Here to learn more about the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card.
Then there is the Chase Sapphire Reserve, the premium version of the Sapphire Preferred Card with many more benefits that makes the annual fee on the card $550 each year.
But Chase is now reducing the annual fee to $450 for all renewals through the end of 2020. It isn’t yet clear if the reduced annual fee will also apply to new cardholders.
And with that higher annual fee, you get more premium benefits. You’ll also earn 3x points per dollar spent on dining out at restaurants and travel expenses. And through the end of June, it also earns 5x points per dollar spent at the grocery store on up to $1,500 spent.
And for opening the card and spending $4,000 in the first three months of card membership, you can earn 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points. But since the points redeem at a value of 1.5 cents each, these points will be worth up to $750 towards travel, groceries, restaurants, and even at home improvement stores.
Even if you have no travel planned for the foreseeable future, again, this is a heck of a deal, but starting with the Sapphire Preferred to earn more points now is likely the better option. You can always upgrade to the Sapphire Reserve at a later date.
Click Here to learn more about the Chase Sapphire Reserve
If you are thinking about taking advantage of the new Pay Yourself Back feature from Chase by opening one of the Sapphire Cards, the Sapphire Preferred Card makes the most sense.
To start with, you’ll earn more points (60,000 after spending $4,000 in the first three months) and your upfront annual fee costs much less. And at a time when travel is off the table, shelling out big money on an annual fee whose value largely comes with being able to travel, the Preferred is a better play.
Not to mention, before your second annual fee is due, you could always upgrade to the Reserve card and your Ultimate Rewards points would ultimately be worth more.
This is a great promotion and Chase is thinking outside of the box on how to add value to credit cards whose value largely depends on cardholders’ ability to travel.
Even if you have no travel planned for the foreseeable future, you can squeeze a ton of value out of this card in the form of groceries, home improvement projects, and even restaurants through the end of September. And hopefully, this benefit sticks around after the COVID-19 pandemic.