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Chase sapphire preferred and reserve cards

How to Book Flights Through the Chase Travel℠ Portal

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What's better than scoring an insanely cheap flight deal? Just one thing: Booking it with credit card points to make it free. And there's no simpler way to pull it off than booking through Chase Travel℠ with your Chase Ultimate Rewards points.

That's why we're big fans of both the *chase sapphire reserve* and the *chase sapphire preferred*. These cards earn Chase's valuable Ultimate Rewards points. And booking through Chase's travel portal is one of the easiest ways to put them to use for free travel.

We'll walk you through exactly how to use your Chase Ultimate Rewards points to book just about any flight deal you want – whether you find a gem through Google Flights or from your Thrifty Traveler Premium membership.
 

 

How to Use Points in the Chase Travel Portal

Before we get into the mechanics of using Chase points in Chase Travel℠, let's back up. Just what value you get from your Chase points depends on which Chase card you have. Certain Chase credit card points are worth even more when redeemed through Chase's travel portal. 

  • If you hold the *chase sapphire preferred*, each point you earn will be worth 1.25 cents when you redeem them through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal.
  • With the *chase sapphire reserve*, each point you earn will be worth 1.5 cents when booking travel through Chase Travel℠.
  • Small business owners with a *chase ink preferred* also get 1.25 cents apiece when redeeming through the Chase portal.

So you're getting a better deal on your points with the Chase Sapphire Reserve than the Preferred card, but either card gets you more than a simple cent-per-point you'll typically get when booking travel through a portal with other cards.

And while Chase has a list of Chase transfer partners for hotel and airline points transfers where you can transfer your points to book flights and hotels, you can book with almost any airline through Chase Travel℠. Some budget airlines are not available, unfortunately … but now you can even book Southwest fares in the Chase travel portal!

Let's make it real with an example.

We recently sent our Thrifty Traveler Premium members a flight deal alert to Portland (PWM) in Maine for under $200, including a fare from Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) for under $159 roundtrip – flying nonstop on Delta, to boot! Here's a look at what's bookable directly via Delta.

 

msp to portland delta fare

 

 

But it gets even better (and cheaper) if you book the same flight using points through Chase Travel℠. If you hold a credit card that earns Ultimate Rewards points like the Reserve or Preferred, just log in to your online Chase account, navigate to Chase Travel℠, and search for this exact same fare … and book it with points instead!

Once you're logged in, navigate to your Ultimate Rewards balance, then select the “Travel” button in the navigation bar and choose the option to “Book travel,” which is highlighted below in red.

 

chase travel portal navigation

 

From here, you can search for the exact same cheap fare you just found. Most (but not all) of the flight pricing you see through Google Flights or in your inbox with a Thrifty Traveler Premium membership should be bookable at the same rates – though you may occasionally see pricing mismatches.

 

chase travel search

 

If you hold the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, you can book this $159 fare for 12,656 Ultimate Rewards points. The same is true for Chase Ink Preferred cardholders.

 

msp to portland chase travel

 

But the deal gets better with the Chase Sapphire Reserve. With each point worth 1.5 cents, you can book the exact same fare for about 10,600 Ultimate Rewards points.

 

You'll go through the exact same process with any cheap fare or flight deal you find, using points to book instead. The cheaper the fare, the fewer points you'll need to book it and make it free. The Chase portal even walks you through the different kinds of fares and lets you pick between them, just in case you'd like to avoid booking a basic economy fare.

 

chase travel portal fare breakdown

 

Want to fly Southwest? You're in luck. While you won't find its fares through Google Flights, Expedia, or almost any other third-party site, you can now book them through the Chase travel portal … and after a devaluation to Southwest's own Rapid Rewards points program to kick off 2024, this might be your best bet now.

 

southwest fares in chase travel portal

 

Is Using Chase Travel Worth It?

Pros of Booking with Chase Points

There are a handful of advantages to booking your flights through Chase Travel℠ but the biggest one is simplicity.

There's no need to dive into the convoluted world of airline transfer partners, find award availability, or calculate and pay additional taxes and fees. Just find a cheap flight, boot up Chase Travel℠, and book it with your points – the cheaper the fare, the fewer points you'll need to make it free.

While you can potentially get far more bang for your buck by transferring Chase points to partners like Air Canada Aeroplan or Singapore Airlines, that requires far more legwork. Booking flights through Chase's travel portal, you're done within just a few clicks.

One of the best parts of booking flights through Chase Travel℠ is that you will also earn airline miles and elite status credits when you actually take your flight. That's not the case for standard airline award redemptions you might book with American Airlines AAdvantage miles, Delta SkyMiles, or any other airline points program. And unlike those redemptions, booking with Chase points this way makes your flight completely free: It covers any taxes and fees you'd otherwise have to pay using miles.

Don't have enough Chase Ultimate Rewards points to complete your booking – or don't want to blow all your points? Don't worry, you can use any combination of points and cash that you would like. You can select the number of points you want to use, and the remaining balance will be billed to your credit card.

 

chase travel portal redemption

 

Because of how easy it is to book flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards points, these two cards crack our list of the best cards for booking flight deals with points.

 

Cons of Booking with Chase Points

That said, there are some potential pitfalls to using Chase Travel℠.

In good times and bad, it's almost always better to book directly with the airline – not an online travel agency (OTA). And when you book with Chase points, you're essentially booking with an OTA.

Major airlines have made the process of changing or canceling flights easier (and free!) throughout the pandemic. While wait times may sometimes be long, it’s relatively easy to make a change. Booking with Chase or any OTA means they're your middleman. And that means you'll need to work with Chase to cancel your flight – and not the airline directly. So proceed with caution.

Finally, there's no question that there are ways to squeeze much more value out of your Chase points by using Chase transfer partners. Especially if you're looking to fly something fancy Lufthansa First Class, transferring points to partner airlines like Air Canada is the ticket: You can book a one-way ticket from Chicago-O'Hare (ORD) to Frankfurt (FRA) for 100,000 Chase points … instead of the 1 million points it'd probably cost you booking through Chase's portal. 

 

lufthansa first class bed

 

Read more: The Best Ways to Redeem Chase Points

Still, this is a valuable option. And if you're not looking to dive deep into the weeds of maximizing airline programs, it doesn't get much easier than this.

 

How to Earn Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

In order to earn and use these Chase Ultimate Rewards points, you need to hold one of the Chase Sapphire credit cards

Before we dive in, it's important to mention that all Chase cards are subject to the bank's 5/24 Rule. So if you've opened five or more credit cards in the last 24 months (from any bank, not just Chase), you won't get approved. That's why we always suggest starting with Chase credit cards.

Read more: Master Guide to Credit Card Applications: All the Rules You Need to Know, Bank by Bank

 

 

Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card

There's no better place to start than the *chase sapphire preferred*bonus_miles_full

Not bad for a card with an annual fee of only $95, right?

In addition to the sign-up bonus points, the card also earns 3x points per dollar spent on dining purchases and 2x points per dollar spent on all travel purchases and 1 point per dollar on all other eligible spending. You also get a $50 annual credit when booking hotels through the Chase travel portal.

Read more: 6 Reasons to Pick Up the Chase Sapphire Preferred vs Reserve

 

*chase sapphire preferred*

 

Learn more about the *csp*.

 

Chase Sapphire Reserve

There's also the *chase sapphire reserve*, Chase's premium travel rewards credit card that comes with a ton of travel benefits. But that adds up: It has a hefty annual fee price tag of $550.

bonus_miles_full

In addition to the sign-up bonus points, the card also earns 3x points per dollar on all travel and restaurant purchases and 1x point per dollar on all other spending. You’ll also earn 10x points per dollar spent on Lyft rides through March 2025.

You'll also get Priority Pass Lounge access, a $300 annual travel credit, and many other premium benefits. Read our full review of the Chase Sapphire Reserve!

 

*chase sapphire reserve*

 

Learn more about the *chase sapphire reserve*.

 

Chase Freedom Credit Cards

If you've already got a Sapphire card, there are some other Chase credit cards that can help bolster your Ultimate Rewards points balance.

While Chase Freedom cards typically earn cashback, holding one of these no annual fee cards in tandem with a Sapphire card makes them exponentially more valuable. That's because you can transfer the cashback these cards earn into your Chase Ultimate Rewards points balance.

But there are two Chase Freedom cards to choose from, and each version differs.

Read up on the differences between Chase Freedom Flex and Chase Freedom Unlimited to see which card is right for you.

 

chase freedom flex card

 

Learn more about the Chase Freedom Flex℠ (for full disclosure, this is a personal referral link). 

 

*freedom unlimited*

 

Learn more about the *freedom unlimited*.

 

Chase Business Credit Cards

Chase also has a number of business credit cards that also earn Ultimate Rewards points. If you are a small business owner, this is another great opportunity to bolster your Ultimate Rewards points balance. See our guide to help you pick the Chase Ultimate Rewards business card that is right for you.

 
*ink preferred*

 

Learn more about the *chase ink preferred*.
 

 

Bottom Line

Leveraging Chase Ultimate Rewards points to book flight deals through Chase Travel℠ is one of our favorite benefits of Chase credit cards.

It allows you to make a cheap flight even cheaper (or free). And it's one of the easiest ways to redeem points you'll find, period.

 

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.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

22 Responses

  • If I cancel my Delta Amex Platinum card and get the Chase Sapphire card you recommend, what happens to the Skymiles I have already amassed?

    • Hi Jon,

      Your SkyMiles will be safe and sound in your Delta account. Canceling that card does not forfeit the miles you have already earned. SkyMiles also never expire so they are yours until you use them.

    • Hey Aaron. Not possible to transfer from Chase to Delta. Only Amex Membership Rewards and Marriott Bonvoy points can be transferred into Delta.

  • Nick, do I understand this correctly that to use Marriott Bonvoy points to get a ticket on a Delta flight , it takes nearly 3 points to equal one frequent flyer mile? Why would anyone do that?I just priced a $900 ticket (or 85000 miles) and Bonvey asked for 235,000 points.

    • Hi Jon,

      That’s correct. Marriott Bonvoy points will transfer into airlines. At a rate of 3 points equals 1 mile.

      Additionally, you will receive 5,000 additional airline miles when you transfer 60,000 Marriott Rewards points to airline miles. 60,000 Marriott points = 20,000 airline miles + 5,000 bonus miles.

      Generally speaking it’s not a great value and should only be used to top off your airline account to make a mileage redemption.

  • Hey Paul, both the business cards and the Freedom cards are mentioned above. You are correct that the Ink Preferred also redeems at 1.25 cents each like the Sapphire Preferred.

  • Hi Jon,
    When I directly book a flight on an airline website using a Chase Sapphire Preferred card for the same price as I get in the Chase Ultimate Rewards Travel Portal, wouldn’t it be the same in terms of using Ultimate Rewards Points? One also seems to get $1.25 dollar statement credit for travel expenses for every 1 reward point. When I book flights through the Rewards Travel Portal one also gets, $1.25 per 1 point. And then, as you say in this article, one does not have the OTA middle man, which can make things more complicated when making ticket changes. Or am I missing something?

    • Hello,

      What you are missing is that you can not use Chase Ultimate Rewards points to remove a charge made directly with an airline or hotel as you can with Capital One Venture Miles. In order to use your points at a value of 1.25 or 1.5 cents each, you would need to book using the Ultimate Rewards travel portal.

  • Hello,

    I got Global entry before I applied for the Chase sapphire reserved card.
    Could I still use the $100 global entry credit even if is not for me? Maybe get global entry for either my wife or daughter.

  • The new host for the Ultimate Rewards travel portal is disappointing. I have been unsuccessful for several months trying to book a flight through the Travel Portal on Chrome web browser. Upon confirming the fare/flight when selecting the return flight, the next page always shows error 400. Anybody else experience this issue?

    I have been having to use Microsoft Edge web browser to book my Ultimate Rewards, which works without any problems, but is still a pain.

  • Hi Nick,
    Booking through the Chase ultimate rewards travel portal can be tricky if the flight booked was cancelled. Virgin Atlantic would not transfer my points back to Chase because I did not book/speak directly with Chase’s travel representative. They offered me the value of my e ticket for future flights booked only through them. This may not be true with other airlines but I learned the hard way.

  • Hello, I have a question concerning airline and hotel status. Can book through Chase Travel and receive airline and hotel points, + receive the perks of my gold status with both?

    • Hey Bill, generally speaking, airline bookings will have status recognized and earn points and credits towards elite status. Hotel bookings generally will not earn points or earn towards elite status.

  • Hey Nick

    Can you buy a ticket (not using the points) from an airline (Eva) that’s not part of one of the 11 airlines Chase partnered with through Chase Reward Portal and still earn x5 pts? Or you can only buy tickets from one of the 11 airlines?

    • Hi Terry, most airlines will be available through the portal and you can buy flights and earn the 5x.

      The transfer partners are used differently and not applicable if you’re using the travel portal.

  • A random but valuable thing to note is that I found if you book online through a computer, the pricing is more expensive than if you were to book through the app from your phone. Very off. Also beware that the seat selection may be limiting being that you are booking through a 3rd party travel site technically so they have reserved certain seats (aka seats near the BATHROOM!) so beware and careful when booking to see the available seats during that last step before payment

  • Booking travel through Chase is a disaster. Firstly, theres a yearly fee of $95 to have this card. No problem. Here’s where it becomes tricky… I have the Chase sapphire preferred card and get 5X the points if I book through Chase. Only problem is that EVERYTHING you book through the Chase portal is more expensive which makes the 5X points worthless. Yes, you can get 5X points but you WILL pay much more for flights, rental cars, cruises, hotels, etc. My AMEX, and other VISA cards give me triple points on any travel through any website I choose to book through. Not Chase though.

  • How do I choose seats through Chase? I purchased tickets and selected seats, but 2 months later, I checked the airlines website and my seats were not there.

  • Thanks for the read, but isn’t a significant drawback in using points for travel that you are in fact forfeiting an expense on the card that itself is eligible for the highest cash back? I think the analysis needs to consider the other opportunities in using points (e.g., pay yourself back at x1.25 which effectively makes other stuff “free”).

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