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While I hold rewards credit cards from all the major issuers, there is one flexible travel program I value more than its competitors. Chase Ultimate Rewards, which is the rewards program offered via cards like the Chase Freedom, Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, and Ink Business Preferred Credit Card, is the program I focus most of my personal and business spending with.
There are a few important reasons I use Chase credit cards for almost everything I buy.
First, I love the flexibility of the Chase rewards program, and the fact I can redeem my points in several different ways. Second, Chase makes it easy to pool points among your personal and business cards and with your spouse, meaning I can earn points through multiple avenues then transfer them to one place for optimal travel redemptions. Third, Chase has the best transfer partners of any travel program hands down — it’s not even close.
So yes, I absolutely use my Chase Sapphire Reserve card for all our spending on groceries, travel, food, and regular bills. For my business, I only have one credit card —the Ink Business Preferred credit card. I use this card to earn 3x points on Facebook and Google ads for my personal website, ClubThrifty.com, and for our business travel and spending.
If you want to earn a ton of rewards and focus on one program only, I suggest you do the same. Here’s why:
1. Chase credit cards make racking up points a breeze
One reason to focus on Chase Ultimate Rewards is the fact that they have a credit card for every purpose — and that you can pair a few cards for optimal point-earning opportunities. In fact, a lot of people shoot for the Chase trifecta – the Chase Freedom card for its rotating 5% categories, the Chase Sapphire Reserve for 3x points on dining and travel, and the Ink Business Preferred credit card for 3x points on popular business spending categories.
Each of these cards offers bonus categories that let you rack up more points than average, and Chase makes it easy to pool points in one account for optimal redemptions, too. You can also shop through the Chase shopping portal to earn up to 12 points per $1 or more in certain online stores, making it easier than ever before to earn a ton of points on everything you buy.
2. Awesome sign-up bonuses
While I’ve had my favorite Chase credit cards for years, each one offers an awesome sign-up bonus that should entice you to sign up. My favorite card for personal expenses — the Chase Sapphire Reserve— offers 50,000 points after you use it for $4,000 in purchases within three months. You also get a $300 annual travel credit, a Priority Pass airport lounge membership, a Global Entry or TSA Precheck credit, and other important travel perks.
The Ink Business Preferred credit card offers an amazing 80,000 points worth $1,000 in travel after you use your card for $5,000 in purchases within three months of account opening. The Chase Freedom and Chase Freedom Unlimited also offer $150 in cash back after you use your card for just $500 in purchases within three months.
3. Chase has the best transfer partners, and they are all 1:1
One reason the Chase Ultimate Rewards program is so versatile is the fact they have such a diverse and lucrative lineup of transfer partners. If you have a premier travel credit card like the Chase Sapphire Preferred, Chase Sapphire Reserve, or Ink Business Preferred, you can pool all your Chase points in one account for 1:1: transfers to popular options like Marriott Rewards, World of Hyatt, IHG Rewards, British Airways, United MileagePlus, Air France/Flying Blue, Southwest Airlines, and Iberia.
With a transfer to Southwest Airlines, you can fly your family all over the US or to the Caribbean. With a transfer to Air France/Flying Blue, you can get to Europe for Cheap — and perhaps even take your entire family along. By transferring points to any one of their hotel programs, you can stay in a nearly endless number of hotels all over the globe for free.
Chase transfer partners can take you anywhere and having more than one redemption option means you’ll never be stuck with points you can’t use. This is especially true since you can cash in your Chase points for statement credits or high-value gift cards at a rate of 1¢ per point. While they’re obviously more valuable if you redeem for travel, it’s nice having a backup option if your travel plans fall through.
4. The Chase travel portal is dynamic and flexible
Finally, it’s important to note the value and flexibility of the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal. This portal, which is now powered by Expedia.com, lets you book flights, hotels, and excursions all over the globe with points, cash, or a combination of the two.
The Chase travel portal can be especially helpful if you need to book travel during a peak travel time. Because you’re not booking through a loyalty program with this strategy, you can book freely without any worry over blackout dates or capacity controls. The Chase travel portal also makes it easy to book with obscure airlines or airlines that don’t have a loyalty program.
Personally, I love using my points to splurge for excursions and tours through the Chase portal. I’ve used Chase points to swim with sharks in Bora Bora, view ancient ruins in Athens and Rome, and tour famous museums brimming with world class art.
The options are endless when you earn points with Chase Ultimate Rewards. Once you build up a sizable stash of points, your travel plans are only limited by your imagination.