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A lot of Travel Freely users have been signing up for Chase Cards – the Chase Sapphire Preferred, Chase Sapphire Reserve, and the Chase Ink Business Cards. So to help you manage your Chase Ultimate Rewards account, we put together this video and guide to help you find the best hotel deals and then book them using your Chase Ultimate Rewards Points.

What you’ll find here is not just a step by step guide into booking hotels with the Chase Rewards portal, but you’ll also find valuable tips on how to make the most of your bookings — from using direct points or making points transfers to even checking outside cash deals. 

 

Phase 1

    1. Get a feel for the points you currently have. If you have multiple Chase cards that earn Ultimate Rewards points, make you check all those accounts and move points to one account if necessary. (If you have a Sapphire Reserve, you obviously want to move your points into your Reserve account.)
    2. Know the dates, and location(s) you want – use Google Maps to search “hotels near (city, neighborhood, etc.”). For example, “Hyatt hotels in Kauai”.
    3. If not sure of where you want to go:
      1. Check out the major brands by location

Phase 2

    1. Go to Chase Portal and search all hotels – see if you can find specific ones you liked
    2. If the hotel is a Marriott, Hyatt, or IHG, search for that reservation at that brand’s website and check out the points required.
    3. Double-check that Hotels.com or Priceline don’t have better cash deals 

Phase 3

    1. Survey your options and value in the Chase Travel Portal vs. the Brand’s website. Then make a booking!

Final tips

    • Unless noted, most hotel bookings are refundable. Sometimes the cancellation date is 1-2 weeks before your stay. This can be helpful in case you are planning well in advance and want to snag the rooms before making a final decision.
    • Marriott gives you every 5th night free when booking with points on says of 5+ nights. Just search for a stay of 5+ nights, and it will automatically add this benefit.
    • If you find an amazing cash deal, just go for it if you have the money. Save points for better value. Odds are you might be able to find that deal in the Chase Travel Portal and save even more money using points.
    • Don’t have enough points? Consider booking in the Chase Travel portal and using a Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card to pay the remaining cash balance.


Tools:

Award Mapper: Use this web app to find hotels near your intended destination that accept points for free nights. Award Mapper shows the hotels on an embedded Google map and lets you narrow results to just the point programs you are interested in.

Open Hotel Alert: If you can’t find award nights for the dates and hotel of interest, use this free tool to alert you when rooms become available for sale. With most hotel chains, you can book award nights whenever standard rooms are available for sale.

Travel Is Free Maps: This is a great site, especially for their maps of where the big hotel programs have their properties. 

 

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