4 Secret Airlines You Can Book With Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

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My favorite use of Chase Ultimate Rewards points is transferring them to airline and hotel partners for Big Travel with Small Money.  But sometimes you’re better off using points to book tickets through the Chase Ultimate Rewards Travel Portal.

And here’s a secret!  There are 4 airlines you can book with Chase Ultimate Rewards points that do NOT show up on Chase’s travel portal!

Chase Rewards Travel

I’ll tell you which airlines the Chase travel portal doesn’t show.  And why knowing how to use your Chase Ultimate Rewards points for tickets with these airlines might be a good deal!

Book Tickets With These 4 Hidden Airlines

Link:   Chase Sapphire Reserve

Link:   Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Link:   Ink Plus® Business Credit Card

When you have the Chase Sapphire Preferred, Sapphire Reserve, Ink Plus, or Ink Bold (no longer available) card, you can use the Chase Ultimate Rewards points you earn to book travel at an improved rate through Chase’s travel portal.

With the Chase Sapphire Preferred, Chase Ink Plus, or Chase Ink Bold, you’ll get 1.25 cents per point for tickets booked on Chase’s travel portal.   And your Chase Ultimate Rewards points are worth 1.5 cents each for travel booked through Chase’s travel portal with the Chase Sapphire Reserve.

But did you know?  There are 4 airlines that do NOT show up on the Chase Travel Portal that you CAN book with Chase Ultimate Rewards points!

You Have to Call This Number

Once you’ve found your flights, call the Chase travel center at 866-951-6592 to book your tickets.

1.   Southwest

Being able to book Southwest tickets through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal is important because you can get a better deal than if you transferred your points to Southwest.

That’s because you can transfer your Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Southwest at a 1:1 ratio, and Southwest points are worth, at most, ~1.43 cents each.  But if you have the Chase Sapphire Reserve, you’ll get 1.5 cents per point when you book airfare through Chase’s travel portal!

Chase Rewards Travel

With the Southwest Companion Pass, Your Chase Ultimate Rewards Points Are Worth Even MORE. Because a Companion Can Fly With You for (Almost!) Free, Even When You Book Your Ticket Through Chase’s Travel Portal.

If you have the Chase Sapphire Preferred, it’s still a better deal to transfer your Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Southwest instead of booking through the Ultimate Rewards travel portal, because your Chase Ultimate Rewards points are only worth 1.25 cent each with the Sapphire Preferred.

2.   Norwegian

Norwegian Air offers cheap flights to spots like Copenhagen, Oslo, and London.  And even has flights between certain US cities and the Caribbean!

I’ve written about a trick to save 20% on Norwegian Air flights, but it’s worth doing the math to see if you’d be better off booking your flight through  Chase’s travel portal.

For example, I found a flight using the 20% off trick on Norwegian Air for from New York (JFK) to London leaving February 13, 2017, and returning February 19, 2017, for ~$392.

That same ticket would cost ~$467 on the Chase travel portal.  Meaning you’d need ~31,133 Chase Ultimate Rewards points if you have the Sapphire Reserve ($467 / 1.5 cents per point), or ~37,360 Chase Ultimate Rewards points with the Sapphire Preferred ($467 / 1.25 cents per point).

So you’d have to decide whether to spend ~$392 on the ticket and save your Chase Ultimate Rewards points for a better deal.  Or if you’d rather spend the points for a free ticket.

3.   Allegiant

Allegiant is a low-cost airline that flies to a lot of popular spots throughout the US like Las Vegas, San Diego, New Orleans, and New York (Newark).

Allegiant tickets are usually fairly cheap, so using your (very valuable!) Chase Ultimate Rewards points for flights with Allegiant might not always make sense, unless you’re just looking for a free ticket.  Because you could have used them for a more valuable redemption instead.

Chase Rewards Travel

Looking for an Award Ticket to New Orleans? You Can Use Your Chase Ultimate Rewards Points for Flights With Allegiant!

That said, do what makes sense for you!  Because a free ticket is better than nothing. 😉

4.   Gol

Gol is another low-cost airline based out of Brazil that flies mostly within Brazil and to a few other cities in South America.

Because they offer such cheap flights, I always recommend doing the math to decide what makes sense for you.

For example, I found a round-trip flight from Sao Paulo to Rio de Janeiro for ~$149 in February 2017.  If you booked that same ticket using your Chase Ultimate Rewards points, it would cost ~9,933 Chase Ultimate Rewards points if you have the Sapphire Reserve card ($149 / 1.5 cents per point).  Or ~11,920 Chase Ultimate Rewards points with the Chase Sapphire Preferred ($149 / 1.25 cents per point).

I’d personally rather pay the $149 cash price for the ticket, and save my ~9,900+ Chase Ultimate Rewards points for a more valuable redemption!

Bottom Line

Chase Ultimate Rewards points are my favorite points because they’re so flexible.  Not only can you transfer them to a number of great travel partners for Big Travel, you can use them to book flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal without having to search for award seats.

But there are 4 low-cost airlines that do NOT show up on Chase’s travel portal:  Southwest, Norwegian Air, Allegiant, and Gol.  And that’s important to know, because you can still book tickets using your Chase Ultimate Rewards points by calling the Chase travel center at 866-951-6592.

And you might find a better deal through Chase’s travel portal than you can by transferring points to the airline or booking directly with the airline!

Have you ever booked a ticket with your Chase Ultimate Rewards points by calling Chase’s travel center?  Let me know your experience in the comments?

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32 responses to “4 Secret Airlines You Can Book With Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

  1. I don’t get your math regarding Southwest Rapid Rewards point value. I just paid 11,813 points for a fare of $199. Even when I subtract the $5.60 fee from that $199 fare, meaning I’m buying $193.40 worth of airfare, it comes to 1.637 cents per point’ Am I missing something?

    • Southwest calculates the number of points needed for a flight using the base fare only. So you’ll have to subtract all of the fees (taxes, passenger facility charge, security fee, etc.) to get your point value. Check out my post here for details: http://millionmilesecrets.com/2014/06/04/how-much-are-southwest-points-worth/

      • I’m not sure that math makes sense. Won’t you end up using more points if you go through the portal because you have to pay the extra fees with UR points while if you transferred to Southwest points you don’t have to (and therefore have an effective rate of 1.6-1.7 cents per point)? Unless booking through the portal also allows you to skip the additional charges above the base fee, won’t it be more expensive to use the portal instead of transferring? Thanks.

        • When you pay completely with Chase Ultimate Rewards points and book through Chase, the price includes all applicable taxes and fees.

          When you transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Southwest for an award ticket, the taxes and fees are extra.

          Remember the value of Southwest points can fluctuate. So always run the numbers to see which is a better deal for the fare you want.

          • I have to agree with PSL and Michael C. The only “taxes and fees” you pay when booking on SW.com with your Rapid Rewards is the 5.60 per segment TSA fee. Based on this, in many/most circumstances it’s a better value to transfer UR to SW RR than to book on the portal. I regularly see my point values calculate out to 1.6 or higher with booking directly on SW.

            I would love to be proven wrong (because I am always interested in my points going further), but your statement in the blog about SW RR points being worth “1.43 cents at most” is not supported by the math.

  2. By transferring Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Southwest, do those Southwest points count toward the required earned 110,000 Southwest points?

  3. If you buy Southwest tickets with UR points through the Chase portal, does that count as a paid ticket and allow you to earn miles on the flight?

  4. Can I use my Companion Pass if I book a Southwest flight through the UR travel portal? Will I get Southwest RR points if I book with UR points in the UR travel portal? And lastly, are there the same international fees booking on UR as there are booking with points on southwest? I have the Sapphire Reserve so this is a very interesting idea. Thanks!

  5. Sorry, I just read your picture caption and it just answered my first question.

  6. Pingback: 4 Secret Airlines You Can Book With Chase Ultimate Rewards Points – Travel Points Guide

  7. Shouldn’t you have included the 2x UR points for airline ticket purchase in your calculations? Seems to make each of these cases a “spend the money and continue to accrue UR points towards a better deal” decision.

    • No, you won’t earn any Chase Ultimate Rewards points in this case. Because you aren’t purchasing the flights with your card. Instead, you’re using your Chase Ultimate Rewards points to cover the cost of the ticket.

  8. Daraius and Emily,

    Can you please explain in more detail how to book Southwest tickets through the Chase Portal? If you can buy tickets through the Chase portal by calling but can’t see it on their website, what do you have to do, first look up the ticket on Southwest.com and then call the Chase phone number? I have the Chase Sapphire Reserve and would like to take advantage of this benefit. I think explaining this is worthy of a fully entry on your website. Thank you.

  9. I had no idea we could Chase points to fly Allegiant! I’m in Knoxville and it’s always cheaper to pay for a ticket to South FL but that’s the only way I’ve paid to fly in the past 5 years. Good to know!

  10. Great post! Another Southwest question for you. I know that if I transfer my points to SW and book an award flight, then I can cancel my flight up until 10 minutes and get all of my points back. Can you tell me what happens if I need to cancel a SW flight that I booked through Chase using UR points?

  11. Along same lines, SWA makes it easy to “rebook” if price drops and get difference in points back.. Can you do this with Chase travel?

  12. Chase Sapphire reserve:
    To use award. problem is you have to pay for baggage. If, I transfer to United and use Explorer card to pay taxes, my bags are free. Any way to get free bags by using chase award points?

    • That’s true about the bags unless you have elite status which waives the fees.

      • United points are INSANELY expensive. How would you recommend I use the 36k points I have on my United Explorer Card? That amount of points doesn’t really seem to cover anything, and it’s not like you can just pay cash for the leftover amount. United forces you to buy points. Any workaround for this? Thanks.

  13. If I purchase a ticket using UR points through the portal, say on United, and later need to change/cancel the reservation, do I still have to pay the airline’s $150-$200 change/cancellation fee?

    Thanks for all your great information!

  14. Can you book Spirit Airlines this way?

  15. Great information.

    A word of caution:
    Always check the airline site directly for how many frequent flyer miles they are requiring. Even with the 1.25 or 1.5 Chase bonus, you may be better off with the airline itself. The Chase bonus is based on the price of the ticket (in dollars), not the points it would take to buy it.

    Here was my experience today:

    Saw ticket on Southwest website for $211.
    Called Chase ultimate rewards and found it would cost 21,095 points from my Chase a Freedom account or 16,876 points from my Sapphire Preferred. 16876 x 1.25 = 21095. So far, so good.

    Excited to use my points, but wait… Southwest is only charging 12601 points for the same flight.

    So I got off the phone, logged in to chase, transferred the points to Southwest (available instantly), and purchased the ticket on Southwest.com

    After it was all over, I realized I had 6000 SWA points available, which I forgot about because I lost all hope of ever being able to redeem…. So I could have transferred fewer points.

    Lesson learned. And now I am open to the idea of looking for miles deals on Southwest. Their prices are so go, I never even bothered….