Travel

This Easy Chase Travel hack gives me back up to 15% on travel purchases

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Combination The benefits of Chase Sapphire Reserve® make it one of the best ways to pay for your travel purchases.


key points

  • Chase Sapphire Reserve® earns up to 10 points per US dollar on qualifying travel purchases made through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
  • Points can be redeemed for $0.015 each through the Pay Yourself Back program.
  • With bonus rewards and value per point, this is equivalent to a 15% return.

My favorite travel hacks are the ones that help me save money without being overly complicated. If it requires multiple steps or some over specific route, it’s probably not for me.

I recently found one simple travel hack that I love when I book trips with a Chase credit card. Because of how much Chase Sapphire Reserve® earns from Chase bookings and how you can use those points, I’ve found that I’m basically getting 7.5% back on air travel. For hotels and car rentals, I get 15% back. Here’s how.

How to save on travel with Chase Sapphire Reserve®

The Chase Sapphire Reserve® program has always been known for its travel perks, including a $300 annual travel credit. It also brings bonus travel rewards and the rates are especially high if you book through the travel portal Chase Ultimate Rewards.

Once you use your $300 annual travel credit, this card earns:

  • 10 points per US dollar on hotel and car rentals purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
  • 5 points per US dollar on flights purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards

What makes this even better is how you can use Chase Ultimate Rewards points. There are several options, including transferring them to partner airlines and hotels, or redeeming them for cashback of $0.01 per point. But in this case, we will focus on a couple of other options that Chase suggests.

You can also redeem points for travel bookings through Chase Ultimate Rewards or use them to pay for previous purchases through the Pay Yourself Back program. With these redemptions, you get 50% more value than the standard $0.01 per cashback point rate. Or in other words, you get $0.015 per point.

Pay Yourself Back is a benefit that Chase has added to its credit cards during the COVID-19 pandemic. It is designed to help cardholders redeem their rewards for everyday non-travel purchases made within the last 90 days. Chase may update the categories from time to time, although it sometimes retains the same categories from one quarter to another.

Putting it all together

This may seem more complicated than originally advertised, but I assure you it is not. I will give a small example to show how you can save on travel in this way.

Let’s say you book a hotel and you have Chase…

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