Although Chase Freedom® credit card is a cashback card, the cash back rewards on this card are earned in form of reward points, called Ultimate Rewards® points. This is the key to the travel maximization strategy described below.
Unfortunately, with the Chase Freedom® credit card you can’t transfer its reward points to airline or hotel partners. You can redeem reward points on travel only through Chase Travel Portal and get 1 cent per 1 point. To increase that amount, you can obtain the Chase Sapphire Preferred® credit card or the Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ credit card and use it with your Chase Freedom® credit card. With this strategy you can increase your travel rewards by 25% or 50%, depending on which card you use together with the Chase Freedom®.
Benefits of Chase Freedom® credit card
With the Chase Freedom® credit card, you earn 5% cashback on purchases within specific categories that rotate every 3 months and 1% cashback on all other purchases. You earn cash back on purchases up to $1,500 every quarter. As noted above, you get cash back in the form of reward points.
You can spend your reward points on gift cards, entertainment and other experiences, or redeem it for credit statement or direct deposit to your account. You can also redeem your reward points on travel purchases. By redeeming your points on travel, you get 1 cent per 1 point.
To our knowledge, the Chase Freedom® 5% cash back on rotating categories is the most profitable way to earn reward points among Chase cards.
Benefits of Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ and Chase Sapphire Preferred® credit card
Typically, with the Chase Sapphire Preferred® credit card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ you redeem your Ultimate Rewards® points and get 1 cent per 1 point.
However, if you redeem points on travel through the Chase Travel Portal, you get a much more attractive deal. With the Chase Sapphire Preferred®, points redemption on travel gives you 1.25 cents per point. With the Chase Sapphire Reserve℠, you redeem points on travel and get 1.5 cents per 1 point. This is a much better offer compared to the Chase Freedom®, which gives you 1 cent per 1 point redeemed for travel.
How to maximize travel rewards
You can maximize your travel by following these steps:
- Earn extra amounts of Ultimate Rewards® points making purchases within 5% cashback categories with the Chase Freedom® credit card.
- Transfer your Ultimate Rewards points from the Chase Freedom® to your Chase Sapphire Preferred® or Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ credit card. These points will be added to the reward points (if you have any) on your Chase Sapphire Preferred® or Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ card.
- Redeem Ultimate Rewards® points from the Chase Sapphire Preferred® credit card or the Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ for travel.
Imagine that you’ve obtained 50,000 Ultimate Rewards® points with your Chase Freedom® credit card. If you simply redeem them for travel through the Chase Travel Portal, you will get an equivalent of $500.
However, if you transfer points to the Chase Sapphire Preferred® card and redeem them through the Chase Travel Portal, you get an equivalent of $625. If you transfer points to the Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ card and redeem 50,000 points through the Chase Travel Portal, you get $750 in purchasing power instead of $500 if redeemed through the Chase Freedom®.