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Chase, Discover unveil enhancements to their rewards credit cards

by Peter Andrew
Chase, Discover unveil enhancements to their rewards credit cards

It’s easy to miss opportunities available to holders of rewards credit cards. And that means you may not be fully enjoying everything the plastic in your wallet offers. So here’s a roundup of recent announcements.

Chase grilling

Chase is hosting a live on-stage battle between chefs to discover the ultimate barbecue feast. The Las Vegas event is scheduled for the evening of May 11, and holders of Chase Sapphire Preferred® cards can buy VIP tickets — perhaps by redeeming Ultimate Rewards points — that could, in the words of a spokesperson, provide an “opportunity for cardholders to taste and witness true culinary magic first-hand.”

Celebrity competitors include executive chef at Yellowtail Japanese & Lounge Restaurant at the Bellagio Akira Back, and Todd English, who’s chef at Olives Bellagio.

Chase Ultimate Rewards and Virgin Atlantic

Meanwhile, Chase has signed up a new points partner for its Ultimate Rewards program. From now on, points earned using Chase Sapphire Preferred®, Ink Plus® and Ink Bold® rewards credit cards can be transferred to Virgin Atlantic’s Flying Club rewards program.

Each Ultimate Rewards point is worth one Flying Club mile, so there’s no loss to cardholders using the new arrangement. And customers who are eligible can receive a 20-percent discount when redeeming points/miles for a qualifying booking through the Ultimate Rewards website. So, a Chase press release explains, a $500 ticket would require 40,000 points instead of 50,000.

Points transferred to the Virgin program can be used to purchase flights and/or upgrades from a dozen partner airlines:

  1. Air China
  2. Air New Zealand
  3. Cyprus Airways
  4. Gulf Air
  5. Hawaiian Airlines
  6. Jet Airways
  7. Malaysia Airlines
  8. SAS
  9. Singapore Airlines
  10. South African Airlines
  11. Virgin America
  12. Virgin Australia

Discover cash back credit cards

Discover has unveiled its current quarter’s 5-percent bonus cash-back category, and it’s all about home improvements. In order to qualify, holders of Discover cash back credit cards must first register at Discover.com or call 1-800-DISCOVER. As usual, you only get the full 5 percent on the first $1,500 of eligible spending. Over that cap, purchases attract just your standard cash-back rate.

The card issuer is also marking Mother’s Day with special cash-back bonuses on selected online purchases made through its ShopDiscover shopping portal. Some of the best deals, which are only available from April 11 through May 12, include:

  • 1-600-Flowers: 20 percent cash-back bonus
  • Fannie May: 20 percent cash-back bonus (mostly for chocolates and candy, and not to be confused with mortgage company Fannie Mae)
  • Bloomingdales: 10 percent cash-back bonus
  • Macy’s 10 percent cash-back bonus

Chase current bonus cash back categories

Those with Chase Freedom® cash back credit cards also stand to earn a 5-percent bonus on their cash back on certain categories of spending between April 1 and June 30. Again, it’s necessary first to register, and the bonus rate is only payable on your first $1,500 of eligible spending, after which standard rewards rates apply.

The three categories are:

  1. Lowe’s
  2. Restaurants
  3. Movie theaters


Disclaimer:The information in this article is believed to be accurate as of the date it was written. Please keep in mind that credit card offers change frequently. Therefore, we cannot guarantee the accuracy of the information in this article. Reasonable efforts are made to maintain accurate information. See the online credit card application for full terms and conditions on offers and rewards. Please verify all terms and conditions of any credit card prior to applying.

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