Chase rolled out its best-ever bonus on the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card this week, with an 80,000-point bonus after spending $4,000 within three months – plus a $50 grocery credit that cuts the card’s annual fee in half. But what does a Chase Sapphire Preferred bonus of 80,000 points really get you?
For starters, it makes the Preferred Card not just one of the best travel card for beginners but one of the best travel cards, period. But few currencies in the world of points and miles are more valuable than Chase Ultimate Rewards. You can do a ton of travel this year, next, and beyond with 80,000 points, whether you book flights or hotels directly through Chase, transfer them to 13 different airline and hotel partners, or even use them to reimburse yourself for everyday purchases with the “Pay Yourself Back” feature.
Here are some of the best ways to spend that big, 80,000-point bonus when you’re ready to travel again.
- Book $1,000 Worth of Flights with Points
- Fly Delta One Biz Class to Europe
- Use Points for Everyday Purchases
- 2 (or More!) Roundtrip Tickets to Hawaii
- A Round-Trip for Two to Europe – Or One in Business Class
- Book a Bunch of Domestic Flights
- Stay Free with Hyatt
- Fly Emirates First Class to Europe
- How to Earn the Chase Sapphire Preferred Bonus & Get More Chase Points
Book $1,000 Worth of Flights with Points
One of our favorite uses of any frequent flyer points is booking the cheap domestic or international flight deals you see here or with a Thrifty Traveler Premium subscription. And the absolute best way to book them is with Chase Ultimate Rewards points.
That’s because your Chase points go farther when you’ve got the Chase Sapphire Preferred. Every point you’ve got is worth 1.25 cents toward travel. That means the 80,000 bonus is worth $1,000 in airfare, hotels, or other travel expenses. And there’s a silver lining: You’ll still earn miles when you fly booking this way, unlike a traditional airline award ticket. Plus, there’s no extra fees or taxes.
As an example, here’s a recent deal on flights to the U.S. Virgin Islands we sent out to Thrifty Traveler Premium subscribers. You can get from Miami (MIA) to St. Thomas (STT) all through the winter 2021 for just $224.
Booking this flight with points from your Chase Sapphire Preferred, it’d be under 18,000 points for this same round-trip fare. Booking flights directly through the Chase travel portal is generally simple and straightforward.
Read up on how Thrifty Traveler Premium works to see if you want to level up with huge savings on both domestic and international airfare.
Fly Delta One Biz Class to Europe
The Delta One Suite is one of the best business class seats in the skies. Every suite has its own door, lie-flat beds, chef-catered meals, and more. And though it normally costs $5,000 or more to fly in this much style, you can easily do it with this big Chase Sapphire Preferred bonus alone.
Read our review of the Delta One Suites and whether they live up to the hype!
Delta itself often charges 250,000 SkyMiles or more to book one of these seats. Don’t do that.
Instead, you’ll transfer your Chase points to Virgin Atlantic, a close partner airline of Delta’s. And when you do that, it’s just 50,000 points for a one-way trip to Europe. It’s one of our favorite workarounds to book Delta One and a go-to way to book any Delta flight for cheaper. Unfortunately, Virgin Atlantic recently eliminated the ability to book cheap Delta flights to other destinations in Australia and Asia.
These days, Delta isn’t flying many jets equipped with Delta One suites to Europe, so it’s gotten much harder to snag a Delta One suite across the pond using Chase points. At the very least, you can book a lie-flat bed to kick off your return to Europe.
Read more: When Can Americans Travel to Europe Again?
You’ll need to transfer just 50,000 Chase points to Virgin Atlantic to enjoy business class on flights like Detroit (DTW) or Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) to Amsterdam (AMS).
It’s not always easy to zero in on the days when you can actually book these Delta One suites through Virgin Atlantic. But read our guide to using Virgin Atlantic miles to book Delta, and you’ll know exactly what to do.
Thrifty Tip: Virgin Atlantic charges an insanely reasonable $50 to cancel any award ticket and get your miles back – and in many cases, you can even get that redeposit fee waived. That means you could book a flight now and cancel down the line if need be.
Use Points for Everyday Purchases
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 those points for purchases beyond travel.
Through at least April 30, 2021 (and likely longer), you can use points through the brand new Pay Yourself Back feature to cover purchases at grocery stores and delivery services, restaurants, home improvement stores, and even some Target stores. And just as when you book flights or a hotel, each point is worth 1.25 cents, so a 60,000-point bonus covers $750 of expenses.
So how does it work? It’s a lot like the Capital One Purchase Eraser feature: Just charge an eligible purchase to your Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, and go back into your account and wipe it from your statement with points.
Check out our YouTube video to see how this benefit works.
First things first: All you need to do is make a purchase at a grocery store, restaurants, home improvement store, or even Target using your Chase Sapphire Preferred or Reserve card. You can even use this new benefit to book Airbnb stays with points.
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.
It’s a fantastic way to use Chase points to shore up your budget until you’re ready to use those points toward travel again.
2 (or More!) Roundtrip Tickets to Hawaii
You can book two round-trip tickets to Hawaii with this Chase bonus. So much for Hawaii being an expensive place to get to, right?
This is an example where Chase’s transfer partners really shine, as you have several options to book round-trip flights to the Hawaiian islands for about 25,000 points each – or far less.
If you time it right, you can get to Hawaii for under 12,000 Southwest Rapid Rewards points, as with this round-trip flight from Oakland (OAK) to Maui (OGG). And because Chase points transfer to Southwest on a 1:1 basis, this 80,000-point sign-up bonus is enough for a family of six to go to Hawaii!
There are some other great ways to get to Hawaii using points. Another option is transferring your points to British Airways, which you can use to book flights to Hawaii on American Airlines. And while American charges 45,000 AAdvantage miles for a round-trip from the West Coast, you can book the exact same flights for just 26,000 British Airways Avios. That means you’ll have enough for three round-trip tickets.
The trick here is that you have to fly from the West Coast, specifically Los Angeles (LAX) and Phoenix (PHX). You can fly from both cities to all four major Hawaiian airports at this low price. Chase points transfer to British Airways on a 1:1 basis, so you’ll be set.
Don’t live on the West Coast? We’ve got another great option for you: You can book Delta flights from almost anywhere in the country for just 35,000 points roundtrip.
The trick is booking with Air France/KLM Flying Blue miles, another Chase transfer partner. Whether you’re booking a nonstop flight from the West Coast, a one-stop journey from New York City (JFK) or Minneapolis St. Paul (MSP) or even a two-stop trip from smaller airports, it’s still just 35,000 miles apiece. With this Chase Sapphire Preferred bonus, that’s enough for two tickets with points left to spare.
These exact same flights would generally cost at least 70,000 SkyMiles apiece – and often closer to 100,000 SkyMiles each! It’s a great way to save on a trip to Hawaii and put your Chase Sapphire Preferred bonus to use. Just beware: Booking these Delta flights through Flying Blue can be tricky, so be sure to read our guide on how it’s done!
A Round-Trip for Two to Europe – Or One in Business Class
“European vacation” and “cheap” generally don’t go well together. But you could use this big Chase bonus and make it a reality for two – or fly solo in style.
Again, you’ll want to transfer your Chase points. This time, you’re going to send them to Iberia – the Spanish airline offering some of the lowest rates to get to Europe and back. Chase points transfer to Iberia on a 1:1 basis, so your 80,000 bonus points = 80,000 Iberia Avios.
Using Iberia, you can fly from Boston (BOS), New York City-JFK (JFK), or Chicago-O’Hare to Madrid (Madrid) for as low as 34,000 miles round-trip. At that dirt-cheap rate, you’ll have more than enough to book flights for two. And keep in mind you’ll actually get at least 84,000 points after spending $4,000 to earn the welcome bonus.
Traveling solo – or feeling selfish? Why not use those points to fly business class to Spain instead? You can do it for just 68,000 miles round-trip! That’s less than most airlines charge for a one-way business class ticket. And with this bonus alone, you’ll have almost enough points to make it happen. Study up on how to book Iberia business class seats for cheap.
With Iberia business class, you’re in for a treat. The seats are plenty spacious and recline all the way into a comfortable bed. The food is tasty, and the service is attentive.
Considering these business class tickets cost $4,000 or more a ticket when paying cash, it’s a phenomenal way to use those 80,000-plus points you’re going to earn.
Book a Bunch of Domestic Flights
Not looking to travel far, or accepting our new normal of less international travel? One of the best ways to book a short domestic flight in the United States is by using airline miles from Europe. We’re not joking.
British Airways is a Chase transfer partner and a Oneworld alliance member, which means you can book flights on partner American Airlines using your Avios. And British Airways is one of the few airlines to use a distance-based award chart, meaning flights of 1,150 miles or less will cost just 9,000 Avios.
With a range of 1,150 miles, you could fly from Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) to Chicago-O’Hare (ORD), New York City-JFK (JFK), or Washington, D.C. (DCA). Other options include ORD-Denver (DEN), JFK-Miami (MIA), and more.
Thrifty Tip: Put in your flight plans at GCmap.com to see if your travel plan makes the cut under 1,150 miles.
British Airways’ site can be spotty, so your best bet to find award availability is to look at American Airlines’ website. Then input your flight details at BritishAirways.com or call up the airline to make the booking. Chase points transfer to British Airways instantaneously at a 1:1 ratio.
But if you’re flying round-trip, there can be even more savings by using those miles through Iberia. It’s another one of our favorite ways to save on flights within the U.S.
With Iberia, short flights can go as low as 11,000 miles for a round-trip flight in economy. Flights under 600 miles total price at that amount, while journeys between 601 and 1,000 miles come in at just 12,000 Iberia Avios. Flights up to 2,000 miles cost just 17,000 Iberia Avios, which still gives you some solid savings.
United is another Chase transfer partner. And the U.S. airline has started selling domestic flights for as low as 5,000 miles each way. Once again, Chase points transfer to United on a 1:1 basis, and they transfer instantly. That means an 80,000-point bonus could be enough for eight domestic round-trip flights – if you play it right.
Stay Free with Hyatt
It’s not just airfare. In fact, using your Chase points to book free nights at Hyatt hotels around the world may be the absolute best use of these points.
Hyatt is one of our favorite Chase transfer partners, thanks to the insanely low rates at which you can book even some four- and five-star Hyatt properties. Here are a few quick examples of how you can squeeze a ton of value out of your Chase points by transferring them to Hyatt.
We’ll start with the best of the best: Hyatt is one of the few hotel chains that operate all-inclusive resorts that can be booked with points. These Hyatt Ziva and Zilara properties scattered throughout Mexico and the Caribbean are amazing. But the best part is that you can book them for just 20,000 to 25,000 points per night!
At that rate, you could spend up to four nights eating, drinking, and sleeping for free on a beach by transferring your Chase points to Hyatt. It’s cheaper than staying at home!
Hyatt has started adding smaller hotel chains to its portfolio, and it’s a great way to get a ton of bang for your buck. Check out the Thompson Chicago or Gild Hall in New York City – both properties typically sell for nearly $400 per night, but you can book them with just 15,000 Hyatt points!
Want to stay at a Park Hyatt, the hotel chain’s absolute top-of-the-line brand? Look for insane value when you’re traveling abroad: The Park Hyatt Saigon and Park Hyatt Siem Reap in Vietnam and Cambodia, respectively, each can be booked for just 15,000 Hyatt points a night.
Or why not splurge for a suite? You can now book suites online with Hyatt points – including this ridiculous three-bedroom suite called “The Royal Residence” at the Park Hyatt Zanzibar for 30,000 points per night.
Fancy a trip to Bali? Get your own villa with a private pool at the Alila Villas Uluwatu – one of the nicest properties on the island – for 30,000 points per night.
Fly Emirates First Class to Europe
It’s time to knock this one off your bucket list.
Emirates first class is incomparable, from the suites to the food and champagne to the showers onboard – at least if you’re flying the Airbus A380. And while a trip through the Middle East will run you much more than what your Chase Sapphire Preferred Bonus, there’s a fun way to put it to use.
Emirates operates two flights from the U.S. straight to Europe: Newark (EWR) to Athens (ATH) and New York City (JFK) to Milan (MXP). And you can book first class in either route with just 85,000 Chase points each way by transferring them direct to Emirates. After Emirates eliminated some hefty fees, you’ll pay just $50 or so in cash, too. It’s a bargain.
Keep in mind you’ll earn at least 84,000 points after spending the $4,000 required to unlock that 80,000-point bonus. That alone puts this bucket list first class flight in reach.
How to Earn the Chase Sapphire Preferred Bonus & Get More Chase Points
Chase Ultimate Rewards points are viewed as some of the most valuable in the miles and points world in part because they’re so easy to collect.
And you should start off with the Chase Sapphire Preferred, which we had already considered the best travel card in these times before this increased bonus. With this new 80,000-point bonus after spending $4,000 in three months and an annual fee of $95 (which isn’t waived in the first year), it’s tough to beat. There are a handful of other perks, too. That includes 2x points on travel and restaurant purchases, great travel insurance, and no foreign transaction fees.
Between the extra value you get when booking through the Ultimate Rewards portal and the flexibility of transfer partners, it’s easy to see why we generally consider the Chase Sapphire Preferred a better option than the Capital One Venture card.
And this card is subject to Chase’s 5/24 rule. So you’ll have to consider your recent credit card applications to figure out if you’re able to apply for the card.
Click Here to get more information about the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card.
After earning the Chase Sapphire Preferred bonus, you’ve got a few options to keep building your stash of Chase points. Of course, there’s the Chase Sapphire Reserve, the ultra-premium sibling of the Preferred card with tons of travel benefits and a new bonus of 60,000 points. But you can’t stack welcome offers by opening both the Chase Sapphire Preferred and Chase Sapphire Reserve – Chase requires you to wait a whopping 48 months after receiving one Sapphire card bonus to be eligible for the other.
That said, there’s another card that is a perfect complement to the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card. Actually, there are two.
Enter the Chase Freedom Flex and Chase Freedom Unlimited cards. These two Chase credit cards have no annual fee and typically earn cashback. But pair one with the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, and it forms a powerful tandem that can help you earn even more Chase Ultimate Rewards points.
Read more on why you should pair a Preferred Card with a Chase Freedom Card!
This is just the start of what could be an endless list of ways to use up your 80,000 point bonus from the Chase Sapphire Preferred. We could go on for pages and pages.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred card has long been one of the best cards out there. But with 80,000 points, it’s indisputably the best card available right now. And that’s because it makes your options for future travel nearly endless.