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If you’re planning a trip to South America, Chile is a wonderful option and should definitely be on your radar. This past summer I was lucky enough to book my first trip to South America. I chose Chile because it’s an adventure lover’s playground.
Nestled in the Andes, popular ski resorts such as Valle Nevado and Portillo are only an hour and a half outside of Santiago! Also, the country also has a thriving cultural art scene, tons of gorgeous wineries, and a picturesque coastline.
With my Chase Sapphire Reserve®, I was able to book a flight through Ultimate Rewards. Here’s what you need to know in order to use your Chase Sapphire Reserve to travel to Chile.
Booking with Ultimate Rewards To Travel To Chile
The Chase Sapphire Reserve is part of Chase Ultimate Rewards, which is a portal that allows you to redeem your points towards booking flights and hotels. Therefore, you can choose to use your points, pay for with Chase Sapphire Reserve, or use a combination of points and dollars.
Pro travel tip: Choosing to redeem your miles for travel with Chase Sapphire Reserve will give you the most value versus redeeming for merchandise or cash back at roughly 1.5 cents per point.
When I booked, I used a combination of points and dollars, since points never expire. However, I didn’t want to blow all of my points on one ticket. So, I used 30,975 points, worth $494.63, and paid $330 out-of-pocket.
Airlines That Fly To Chile
If you’re flying in from the U.S. chances are you’ll fly into Santiago International Airport or SCL.
United Airlines and American Airlines are two common airlines that fly to Santiago and also have direct flights. From SFO, my layover was in Dallas. Typically, layovers to travel to Chile may be in Los Angeles, Houston, or Miami.
When I flew from SFO, my American Airlines flight had a 2-hour layover in Dallas before making its way over to Santiago.
Direct flights from the U.S.:
- American Airlines
- LATAM Airlines group
Airlines that fly to Chile from the U.S.:
- Air France
- Air Canada
- Aerolineas Argentinas
- Avianca Brasil
- British Airways
- GOL Linhas Aereas
- LATAM Airlines
- LATAM Airlines Ecuador
- LATAM Airlines Argentina
Transfer Your Miles To A Partner Airline
One of the convenient things about Chase is that they partner with ten different frequent flyer programs. Because of this, you can transfer points on a 1:1 basis. It definitely makes sense to take advantage of the Chase Ultimate Rewards perks.
If it makes sense for you to do so, you can transfer your Ultimate Rewards points to:
- United MileagePlus
- Southwest Rapid Rewards
- JetBlue TrueBlue
- British Airways Executive Club
- Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
- Air France/KLM Flying Blue
- Singapore Krisflyer
- Aer Lingus AerClub
- Iberia Plus
- Emirates Skywards
Also, remember that transfers are a 1:1 ratio. Also, you can only transfer in 1,000-point increments. Once you decide to transfer your points, you can’t transfer them back to Chase Sapphire Reserve.
When To Transfer Miles To A Partner Airline On Ultimate Rewards
There are a number of reasons why you may want to transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to a partner airline. Some may include:
- Flight times are more convenient (or more frequent)
- You already have some miles with a certain airline and want to combine miles
- You want to fly from a different airport
- You’d like to try a new airline
Consider Transferring To United MileagePlus
United Airlines flies to Santiago and frequently have deals and promotions, like this one from Newark.
The most bang for your mileage buck to transfer miles would probably be with United MileagePlus, which works under Star Alliance.
When you transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards to United, you’ll have the option to book flights operated by more than 40 different airlines, including 27 members of Star Alliance.
Transfer To British Airways Or Flying Blue
Also, it may make sense for you to use British Airways and book a flight on American Airlines or LATAM Airlines. Both regularly fly to Santiago.
Another option is Flying Blue, which is the frequent flyer program for Air France and KLM. Then you can fly on Delta or Aerolineas Argentinas.
Chase Family Of Credit Cards To Choose From
Not all Chase Ultimate Rewards credit cards have the same value, therefore you should try to stick with the best Chase credit cards, at least initially. Therefore, you get the most value for travel with the Chase Ultimate Rewards Card. Here are the value of points when booking with Chase Travel Portal.
Also, note that not all of these cards transfer to partner airlines.
Chase Ultimate Rewards Card Points That Go Towards Travel Transfer Miles To Partner Airlines
If you have a Chase credit card that doesn’t transfer to a partner airline and would like this flexibility, you may consider applying for a Chase Sapphire Reserve and then moving your points over.
For example, if you have points on Chase Freedom (which doesn’t allow you to transfer to partner airlines), you can instantly move them over to Chase Sapphire Reserve (or Chase Sapphire Preferred or Ink Business Preferred Credit Card). Then you can transfer your points to any of the ten partner airlines.
Because of the ability to be flexible, being able to transfer points is one of the Chase Sapphire Reserve perks.
Chase Ultimate Rewards Benefits
The travel benefits of the Chase Sapphire Reserve® are too good to pass up. Because of this, the card is a staple for savvy world-class travelers.
Some awesome perks include:
- 50,000 bonus points as long as you spend $4,000 in the first 3 months of account opening
- $300 annual travel credit (learn how I took advantage of this perk)
- 3X the points on dining worldwide
- No foreign transaction fees
- 50% or more in travel redemption
- Priority Pass Lounge access in 1,000+ VIP lounges and 500 cities
How I Took Advantage Of These Perks To Travel To Chile
I booked an Airbnb for the week but wanted to treat myself on the last night at a hotel. So naturally, I used some points on my Chase Sapphire Reserve, one of the best travel cards, to book a hotel in Santiago.
I hopped on Ultimate Rewards and found a ton of cheap (but very nice) hotels in the Santiago area. I spent 7,000 points on a hotel and enjoyed relaxing in the hotel’s sauna and rooftop bar on my last night.
I also used Priority Pass at the Santiago Airport on my way back home. The lounge was a pleasant surprise. It was huge, with two food stations and bars at both ends of the lounge.
There are plenty of airlines that fly to Chile. But if you have a Chase Sapphire Reserve, you have the flexibility to book with your miles or transfer your points to a partner airline.
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