People who collect Chase Ultimate Rewards know you can use points to book travel through the Chase Travel Portal. While you can book flights, hotels and rental cars, many avoid these redemptions because you need to deal with Chase if anything goes wrong. In addition, hotels booked through the portal don’t earn loyalty points or get perks.
However, it’s foolish to ignore that you can book much more than flights, cars and hotels through the Chase portal. You can also book travel experiences and get 1.5 cents per point if you have a Chase Sapphire Reserve, 1.25 cents per point with the Sapphire Preferred and 1 cent per point for all other Chase cards (Freedom Flex or Unlimited.)
For our trip to Hawaii, I wrote that we were considering being total tourists and going to a luau. While we realized this was the ultimate tourist attraction, there’s nothing wrong about acting like a tourist when you’re on vacation.
When we decided on which luau we’d visit, I was about to book our tickets online. That’s when I remembered that I still had a decent amount of Chase Ultimate Rewards and I’d rather redeem them for 1.5 cents each (since I have a Sapphire Reserve) than pay for the luau.
The first thing was to check if the Chief’s Luau was offered on the Chase portal, which it was. The price was the same as if I’d booked it directly from the website.
The price for two premium tickets was $390 (which included preferred seating, drink vouchers and a special lei).
At 1.5 cents per point, that was 26,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points.
While I was apprehensive that we’d have reservations when booking through a third party, our check-in at the luau was seamless. We even got to skip the line and go to the preferred check-in desk.
Did we enjoy our luau experience and was it worth the price? That’s for another post-:-).
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