It’s Back! You Can Book Southwest Flights With Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

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When the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal switched over to being powered by Expedia, the change was mostly positive but not without drawbacks. One of the biggest hits was losing the ability to book Southwest flights through the Ultimate Rewards portal.

Good news — as of a few days ago, that has changed!

Being able to use your Chase Ultimate Rewards points for Southwest flights opens up your options. (Photo by @jpi213 /Twenty20)

Use Chase Ultimate Rewards Points for Southwest Flights

You can’t search for Southwest flights online through the Chase travel portal, so you’ll have to call Chase travel at (866) 951-6592 to book. Also, according to The Points Guy, you’ll need to have one of these Chase cards to use this feature:

  • Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Being able to pay for you Southwest flights with Chase points is a nice option because you’ll be able to book free flights and earn frequent flyer miles at the same time (This could be helpful if you’re close to earning a Southwest Companion Pass). When you book through Chase travel, your Chase Ultimate Rewards points are worth 1.25 cents each if you have the Sapphire Preferred and 1.5 cents each if you have the Sapphire Reserve.

There is no Southwest award chart, but Southwest points are usually worth 1.4-1.7 cents each, so it may be a better deal to transfer your Chase points to Southwest and then book the flight. Keep in mind that you will pay taxes on award flights, which isn’t much for domestic routes but can top $100 on certain Caribbean flights. When you pay for the flight by calling Chase travel your Chase points can be used to cover the taxes as well.

Remember, Southwest doesn’t charge change or cancellation fees. This is great because if the price of your flight drops you can easily re-book at the lower price. If you cancel an award flight booked with Southwest points, the points are automatically refunded to your account and available to use (although Southwest points can expire). If you book Southwest’s cheapest Wanna Get Away fares and pay with Chase points, the refund will be in the form of a travel credit, which would need to be used within a year.

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Hat tip: View From the Wing

Jason Stauffer was a writer for Million Mile Secrets where he covered points, miles, credit cards, airlines, hotels and general travel. His work has appeared in The Points Guy and NextAdvisor.

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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