Chase Adds Emirates as Ultimate Rewards Transfer Partner

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Chase has announced the addition of Emirates as a Chase Ultimate Rewards transfer partner. Points are transferable at a ratio of 1:1 with a minimum transfer of 1,000 required. At this point, we do not know exactly how long the transaction takes; although, with most of its other partners, Ultimate Rewards transfer almost instantly.

With this addition, Chase now boasts a total of 10 airline transfer partners. For more details on how to get the most out of your points, check out our complete guide to the Ultimate Rewards transfer partners.

Availability is King

No matter how large your Ultimate Rewards balance, if there is no award availability, then your only option will be to book airfare through the Chase Travel Portal. This is where this new partnership has an ace up its sleeve; Emirates has a lot more award availability for its own Skywards members than it offers to its partners. So even though you can book Emirates awards on Alaska at a great price, a lack of partner availability is a frequent problem.

On the other hand, the enhanced availability by going through Emirates Skywards comes at a heavy price premium, with some business class awards setting you back well over 100,000 points and nearly $800 in taxes and fees for a one-way ticket.

Our Take

It is always good news when a points currency becomes more flexible. More options (even if you don't often use them) creates more value. The addition of Emirates is a win, even if the staggering amount they charge for premium awards does take the shine off the new partnership. On the other hand, if you absolutely must fly Emirates business or their stunning suites aboard the Boeing 777, and can’t find any space with Alaska, transferring directly from Chase to Emirates Skywards could be a lifesaver.

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  • New Offer! Earn 100k bonus points after you spend $15,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,250 toward travel when redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent on travel and select business categories each account anniversary year
  • Earn 1 point per $1 on all other purchases - with no limit to the amount you can earn
  • Points are worth 25% more when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards
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  • No foreign transaction fees
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  • $95 Annual Fee
  • 3X points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent in combined purchases on travel, shipping purchases, Internet, cable and phone services, advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines each account anniversary year
  • 1X point per $1 on all other purchases

Source: One Mile At A Time

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Comments

  • New partners is always good news, Thanks.

  • I’d be interested to see if Emirates flights will cost less points in the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal or if transferring directly to Emirates. Oddly enough the economy flights I usually find are cheaper if you pay in cash (not using any points system). However I may be looking at this inefficiently.

  • I know that Emirates Loyalty program is not the best but it has some sweetspots too , and adding them to ultimate awards brings more choices /flexibilty

  • The commercials and ads make Emirates look so appealing. Maybe someday I’ll give it a try.

  • this is awesome. Dubai is such an amazing city and Emirates is the best way to go there!

  • This is great that there are more booking options! I’m looking at opening the Ink Business card so this added partnership makes it even more desirable for me!

  • I wish American was added too!! We can keep hoping I guess.

  • I agree that Emirates isn’t the best to be added. But like from the post they have some use and a lot of people do like to visit where they travel. I just don’t see much use for them.

    I wish that American was added but since they have United it’s probably not going to happen.

  • Another transfer partner is nice, but I agree this isn’t one that I will likely use. I like my award flights to be free (almost so) so I’ll stick with other partners that don’t make me shell out the price of an economy ticket for a business award (no matter how nice it is.)

  • Godo to have more partners. Korean was better.

  • Agreed. Additional partners are always a good thing. Optionality, when utilized judiciously, brings more value. One never knows when an excellent value reward fare pops. And, if few Ultimate Rewards Points are transferred to any travel provider, it is a strong message to that provider that their reward program is a dog!

    • exactly, not sure why all the complainers in here

      • There are usually lots of folks in the comments sections on AW with lots of experience with various airlines and their loyalty programs, so it’s usually best to seriously weigh the opinions that they’re sharing. And here, you do see the majority of folks questioning the strength of the Emirates loyalty program, and they are giving you their reasons why as well.

  • Always nice for to have additional partner but this is definitely not game changing. Miles redemption is way too high. Chase losing KE redemption still hurts.

  • I like the experience of flying Emirates, and Dubai is great to visit, but Skywards seems like a really poor scheme. I wish Emirates would join an alliance – they seem to have quite a few oneworld patners, but I guess even if they did want to join Qatar Airways would block them.

  • Always a big fan of Emirates! Great move! Thanks for the information

  • This news pleases me greatly as Emirates is my preferred airline. If you haven’t flown them, you’ll be spoiled as no other airline compares.

  • I feel like for those of us with not a lot of UR spend, Hyatt is still the best option (though def getting a worse value by the day)

  • Great news. Always like new transfer partners.

  • this could potentially be big. EK suites w/ shower is the best in the world

  • Another reason to fly more with Emirates.

  • As you outlined in the article, the biggest problem with using EK miles is the heavy fuel surcharges, and this makes me hesitant transferring points to EK.
    Nevertheless having more transfer partners is always nice.

  • Emirates has a terrible loyalty program with high redemption rates and fees. While I like that Chase has added a new transfer partner, Emirates isn’t a quality partner that adds value to Ultimate Rewards. I would rather Chase have a few quality transfer partners than several bad ones.

  • It’s always good to have more transfer partners, but I cannot see myself taking advantage of this one at the prices charged. Also, I wouldn’t say Emirates flights can be booked at a great price using Alaska miles. Better than Skywards, but the good ole days are unfortunately over – 165,000 in business, 240,000 in first to the Middle East and 240,000 and 400,000 to Africa aren’t cheap. South Asia for the same as the Middle East isn’t terrible, but you can fly Cathay for much less.

  • Some US-Europe direct routes are a bit of a sweet-spot, and may make sense for awards, but totally agree, pretty much anything thru Dubai in a premium cabin is going to cost an arm and a leg.

  • Always good to have more flexibility. I haven’t flown Emirates yet but will give the program a new look.