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Is There A Way To Convert Chase Ultimate Rewards Points Into Delta Miles?

by on March 30, 2014 · 13 comments

in Chase, Sunday Reader Questions, Video Blog Post

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TPG reader Paris recently reached out on Twitter with an interesting question about when it might make sense to transfer Chase points to a non-transfer partner like Delta.

“Is there a way to transfer Chase Ultimate Reward points to non-transfer partners like Delta?” The answer is yes, but at a terrible ratio, let me explain.

I actually get similar questions a lot about whether there are ways to convert miles on one airline to miles on another, or to convert one kind of hotel points to another, and the answer is usually no. It gets a little trickier when we’re talking about transferable points like Chase Ultimate Rewards, though.

That’s because most hotel programs will let you transfer points to airlines, and these ratios have been decreasing in recent years. Club Carlson just hacked away at their point to airline ratio. You can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Hyatt, Marriott, Ritz-Carlton or IHG Rewards and then from there to airline miles, but it’s pretty awful.

For example, Hyatt will let you convert points to miles at a ratio of 2.5 points to 1 miles in increments of 5,000 points, and if you convert 50,000 points they’ll give you a bonus of 5,000 miles so that you end up with 25,000 miles. Even with that, your transfer ratio is 2:1 – still not great. So what you can do is transfer Ultimate Rewards points to Hyatt at a 1:1 ratio then transfer them to Delta at a 2.5:1 ratio (or 2:1 if you transfer 50,000). At best, you’re using 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points to end up with 25,000 Delta miles – so I would not suggest doing that.

My go-to transferrable points programs

My go-to transferable points programs

On the whole, when you’re going through another program to transfer miles, you are going to lose a lot of value. There are a couple of exceptions. For instance, if you want to transfer Amex Membership Rewards (which you earn with cards like the Platinum and Premier Rewards Gold) into US Airways miles there is a way to do so by transferring them to Aeroplan and then converting those Aeroplan miles to US Airways miles via Points.com that I outline in this post. In that example, you’re using 100,000 Amex points and ending up with 86,000 US Airways miles – still a loss, but not too bad. However, there are limits to these conversions so read into it before you start transferring by this method.

In general, I recommend building up points in transferable programs like Amex Membership Rewards (17 airline partners), Starwood Preferred Guest (over 30 airline partners, though transfer times can be slow) and Chase Ultimate Rewards (10 travel partners including 5 airlines such as United and Southwest if you have cards like the Sapphire PreferredInk Bold and Ink Plus).

There are 10 great travel transfer partners of Ultimate Rewards.

Ultimate Rewards will allow you to transfer points to up to 10 partners including United and Southwest

The real goal is to get as much flexibility as possible, diversify your points and focus on those transferable points programs which will give you a lot of different options when it comes time to redeem. For more information, check out these posts:

Why Transferable Points are Best
The Ultimate Guide to American Express Membership Rewards Airline Transfers
The Ultimate Guide to Chase Ultimate Rewards Airline Transfers
Ranking the Chase Ultimate Rewards Transfer Partners
The Ultimate Guide to Starwood Preferred Guest Airline Transfers
Maximizing Starwood Preferred Guest Airline Transfers

Let me know if you have any other questions by messaging me on Facebooktweeting me or emailing me at [email protected]

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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  • namenamename

    Did the reader consider transferring to Korean and using their partner chart for delta? Or does that not work?

  • POPO

    I’ll transfer my Amex to your Delta if you transfer your Chase to my United.

  • Lantean

    why on earth would anyone do that? convert quite valuable points to skypesos? it doesn’t make any sense to me at all…

  • orvirginatlantic

    Or Virgin Atlantic…or does than not work either?

  • trey

    depending on what delta tickets you’re looking at, you can just use your UR points and redeem for travel at 1.25cents per point. you can earn miles on your trip and get flexibility like booking 1-ways as well! (e.g. a $300, 2000-mi r/t ticket will cost you ~24000UR points and net you 2000 sky pesos)

  • Shorty

    Whyyyyyyyy??

  • T Dog

    I have more AmEx MR points than I need and not enough Chase UR. My real goal is Hyatt points to use during a trip this summer. Is there an informal exchange where people can swap points? For instance: I transfer my MR points to your Delta account and you transfer your UR points to my Hyatt account.

  • Junblaze

    Omg why would would anyone want to do this unless it was to top of an account for an award booking…. Even my MR points are transferred to Delta only at when they have a bonus but havens seen those in a while

  • Anthony

    VA works. I’m frankly disappointed it wasn’t mentioned in the main article.
    It’s bad advise to claim you can only transfer UR to Delta at 2.5:1. You can do 1:1.

  • Steve

    Maybe they are 5,000 miles short of a round trip to Europe. Not a bad use of miles in my opinion. Remember, not everyone is in the same position as oneself.

  • Steve

    If someone has for example 85,000 skymiles and needs to top off an extra few 1k for an award would this still work? It was always my understanding you can cross book but not commingle points.

  • trey

    yep, only reason would be to make points whole for award ticket. if OP cannot strike an exchange/deal with someone else, he/she can transfer hotel points(?) to delta or buy sky miles (ouch!).

  • Renata

    I need to fly US Airways from PHL to FRA, and would like to pay with miles. The round trip ticket is 95K miles +$182.00. The current offer for US Airways for opening a new card is 40K miles, but I still need 55K to buy a ticket. Is there a way to apply for one more credit card and transfer miles to US Airways? If so, for which CC(s) should I apply? Also, if my husband will also apply for US Airways CC, would he be able to transfer his miles to me?
    Thank you in advance for your help!

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