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Online shopping portals are a no-brainer. Never, ever shop online by directly going to a retailer (whether that be Neiman Marcus or American Airlines). Always go through a portal so you get extra miles or cash back.
American Express shut their earning portal down last year, but luckily Chase has a pretty generous portal (Ultimaterewards.com -> Earn Faster) that allows you to rack up tons of valuable Ultimate Rewards points at hundreds of retailers. As I’ve written about before, this is a great way to maximize the points you earn on airfare- they used to offer 2 points at Travelocity, so in addition to the 2 points per dollar on all travel and dining from the Sapphire Preferred and the 7% annual dividend, it was like getting 4.28 points per dollar spent. I value Ultimate Rewards points at 2.1 cents a piece, so that’s like getting an additional ~9% back in value.
Sadly, many retailers were pulled from the portal recently, including travel sites Orbitz, Travelocity and Priceline. Luckily Expedia and Hotwire are still options at 1 point per dollar spent, but they’re only at 1 point per dollar each. Hotwire has been 2 points per dollar in the past, so let’s hope Chase ups the ante next month! Note: If you’re going to book through Expedia, make sure you triple dip and get their new Expedia+ rewards points as well.
Have you noticed any other key retailers missing from the Ultimate Rewards portal?
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
|Intro APR||Regular APR||Annual Fee||Balance Transfer||Credit Rating|
|N/A||16.24%-23.24% Variable||Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95||See Terms||Excellent Credit|