Cardholder Events: Ski with Lindsey Vonn or Experience the Derby, Oscars or Rio Carnival Like a VIP
Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here.
Update 1/23/17: Chase has confirmed that the skiing component of the ski weekend in Vail is sold out. However, you can put your name on a waitlist if you're still interested in attending the event. Also, you can still purchase tickets to the meet-and-greet event with the skiers, which costs $75.
Credit cards can give you more than just points and miles to use for free travel. One lesser-known perk: access to unbelievably hard-to-get-into events. TPG has enjoyed the Cayman Cookout as a Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card holder and got exclusive access at the Sundance Film Festival with his Chase Sapphire Preferred card. Some of these events can even be paid for with points — a great way to redeem rewards if you don't feel like traveling.
Check out these four upcoming events that are solely for people who have either a credit card or an account with the sponsoring loyalty program. Act quickly if you're thinking about attending an event, as many sell out quickly.
Location: Vail, Colorado
Date: March 25 - 26
Here's a unique opportunity for Chase customers: exclusive access to a weekend with some of the most legendary skiers to ever grace the slopes. Champion skiers Lindsey Vonn, Jonny Moseley, Phil Mahre and Steve Mahre will lead ski sessions to help improve your downhill and mogul skills, and guests can ski with these pros. After a long day on the mountain, kick back at the lodge and join the skiers for a fireside Q-and-A session. Buy tickets here.
Cost: Current bid at 500,000 HHonors Points
Location: Los Angeles, California
Date: February 10 - 13
If you've ever wanted to walk the red carpet and feel like a star, this is your chance. Through the Hilton HHonors program, you can use your points for two tickets to the Grammy Awards, accommodations at the Beverly Hilton and a weekend of award show festivities. This is a pretty unique redemption, similar to TPG using his Chase Ultimate Reward points to attend the Emmys last year. Bidding ends on February 3.
Host: American Express
Location: Louisville, Kentucky
Date: May 4 - 5
Get out your best pastel suit, because with this VIP experience you'll be enjoying the Kentucky Derby in style. This package from American Express includes a private suite to view the races, a behind-the-scenes tour of the Churchill Downs barns and stables and an invitation to the post-race Winner's Party. Although this event is on the pricey side, TPG loved his experience at the most famous horse race in the world in 2015, and access to VIP areas helps you avoid the crowds. Ticket sales end on May 3.
Cost: Current bid at 200,000 Marriott points
Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Date: February 25 - 28
You can live the magic of the Rio Carnival with this priceless experience, as you'll get to walk in the parade with the famous Unidos Da Tijuca samba school in your very own Carnival costume. This two-person package from the Marriott Experiences Marketplace also includes tickets to the Rio Carnival VIP Lounge and a three-night stay at the luxurious AC Hotel Rio de Janeiro Porto Maravilha. Carnival lasts for a week, so you could extend your stay to enjoy Rio and all the festivities. Bidding ends on February 9.
Which events have your credit cards given you access to?