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INSIDER SECRET: You can pool the points you earn with no-annual-fee Chase cards, like the Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card, with annual-fee cards, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and then transfer those Chase Ultimate Rewards points to airlines and hotels.
For those readers with a healthy stash of Chase Ultimate Rewards points I’ve got good news — Chase has added a new airline transfer partner. You can now transfer your Chase points to Emirates at a 1:1 ratio.
Emirates is one of the nicest airlines in the world, but its loyalty program will only have limited use for most people. So while its always great to have new transfer options, this one isn’t a total game changer. Let’s take a look at a couple of potentially useful Emirates redemptions.
Chase Ultimate Rewards Add Emirates
Emirates doesn’t have an award chart and instead has miles calculator you can use to price out specific award flights. Emirates does add significant fees to award and the extra charges can be especially high for business and first-class seats.
Some Emirates awards are reasonably priced in terms of miles. Emirates miles could be useful if you’re flying one of its two nonstop routes from the US to Europe (all other Emirates flights to Europe transit through Dubai); New York (JFK) to Milan and Newark to Athens.
Here are the round-trip award prices for those flights:
- Economy – 45,000 + ~$360 in fees
- Business class – 90,000 + ~$1,100+
- First class – 135,000 + ~$1,100+
While those are rock bottom points prices, the fees can make it a mixed-bag for some. You can regularly pick up cheap cash economy flights to Europe for $400-$500 or less, but you could look at the business/first-class fees as purchasing those flights as a steep steep discount (first class on this route can easily top $10,000), if you can find open award seats when you want to travel. Also, the inflight experience on Emirates is going to be far better than with any US airline and it wouldn’t be hard to justify shelling out some cash.
Even though Emirates isn’t part of any of the three major airline alliances they do have partnerships with these airlines:
- Air Mauritius
- Alaska Airlines
- Copa Airlines
- Japan Airlines
- Korean Air
- Malaysia Airlines
- S7 Airlines
- South African Airways
- TAP Portugal
Each Emirates partner has a separate award chart and for most of them you’ll need to call in to book. The Japan Airlines partner award chart looks generous for economy and business-class round-trip awards to Australia:
- 70,000 Emirates miles round-trip in economy
- 145,000 Emirates miles round-trip in business class
- 215,000 Emirates miles round-trip in first class
Emirates allows a free stopover on international Japan Airlines award flights so you could add a visit to Japan on your trip to Australia. However, the fuel surcharges on Japan Airlines awards can get extremely high and you’ll need to call in to book or figure out what the fees will be.
Chase is a 1:1 transfer partner of JetBlue, the way JetBlue points work is that the award price of a flight is tied to its cash price (just like Southwest). So cheap JetBlue flights won’t cost many points but when ticket prices are high it can get unreasonable. That’s where Emirates also has some potential as a option for booking JetBlue flights.
The Emirates JetBlue partner award chart has a fixed price for different routes starting at 7,500 miles one-way. So you can save some Chase points by double checking with Emirates before transferring to JetBlue. For example, on most dates JetBlue award flights from Orlando to Cancun cost 8,000 points or less, but they can top 13,000 points sometimes. So if your travel dates aren’t flexible you could save by transferring to Emirates and booking the same flights for only 12,000 points. You will have to call Emirates to book the flights.
To earn transferable Chase Ultimate Rewards points you’ll need at least one of the following cards:
- Ink Business Preferred Credit Card – Biggest bonus of these cards, you can learn more from our Chase Ink Business Preferred review
- Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
- Chase Sapphire Reserve®
If you (or a household member) already has any of the above cards, you can pool the points you earn with these no-annual-fee Chase cards, which can then be transferred to Emirates or any of Chase’s other travel partners:
- Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
- Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card
- Chase Freedom Unlimited®
- Chase Freedom®
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Featured image by Rebius/Shutterstock.