How They Used the Chase Sapphire Preferred Signup Bonus to Travel for Free

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It’s no surprise that you can use credit cards to your advantage. And some credit cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card offer a substantial Chase Ultimate Rewards points signup bonus when meeting the $4,000 qualifying minimum spend within three months after account opening.*

I spoke to a couple of great individuals who shared their stories of how they’ve been able to travel far and wide for free thanks to their Chase Ultimate Rewards points. So without further ado, let’s jump right in!

*It’s important to note the Chase Ultimate Rewards points earned using the Chase Sapphire Preferred card are currently valued at 1.25 points per dollar.

Jeff Moriarty


Jeff Moriarty, 42, of Chicago, Illinois, is the Marketing Director for My Supplement Store, a large nutrition company with an online site and multiple stores.

He’s been a Chase Sapphire Preferred cardholder since 2019, now a proud cardholder for three years. At the time, Jeff was eligible for a fabulous 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points signup bonus!

Jeff was an avid traveler up until March 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic halted all travel around the world. Now that the pandemic is finally subsiding, Jeff continues to use his Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card to make all of his purchases. And get this: at the end of each calendar year, he typically has enough Chase Ultimate Rewards points accumulated to purchase international roundtrip flights for him and his wife! Thanks to flights being fully funded by points, Jeff and his wife are able to splurge more on experiences during their vacation rather than having to shell out big bucks for airfare.

Now let’s hear from Lyndsay Crescenti, a newly recognized dual U.S.-Italian citizen who decided to pick up everything and move to Italy in 2021!

Lyndsay Crescenti


Lyndsay Crescenti, 27, of Connecticut, is the founder of Purposely Lost: a travel experience + travel planning website where she helps people plan the adventure of their lives. She made the bold decision to uproot her life in the U.S. and moved to Italy in 2021. Now, she’s created a business centered around her passion!

She’s been a Chase Sapphire Preferred cardholder for close to a year now. She decided to apply since she needed a U.S.-based credit card with no foreign transaction fees now that she was going to move abroad. Luckily for her, she too was eligible for an 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points signup bonus at the time.

Since Lyndsay made the ultimate plunge and moved her life from the U.S. to Italy, she’s been transferring her Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Chase Travel Partners so she can book airfare between the U.S. and Italy.

With the increase in gas prices around the world, flying has become much more expensive! So, instead of paying out of pocket, she hunts through her preferred airlines for award flights and uses her Chase Ultimate Rewards points to book the cheapest routes possible. Lyndsay typically likes to fly first-class, but nowadays she’d much rather save her points and take three or four round trip flights instead of just one ultra-luxurious one. She’s saved so much money on airfare this way, which means she can afford to visit her family more often. Go Lyndsay!

Now, let’s hear from James Holland who used his points to explore Thailand.

James Holland


James Holland, 63, of Sonoma, California is the Founder of LifePart2, a business where he consults for people on their finance, travels, and lifestyle decisions.

He’s been a Chase Sapphire Preferred cardholder since January 2016, five years after the card debuted in 2009. At the time, he got a 60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points signup bonus.

He used some of his signup bonus to pay for a 3 night hotel stay in beautiful Thailand for just 12,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points total. And what’s better? He paid for his flight in points too, just 25,000! The Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card has helped James travel much more without spending additional cash.

The points bonus provides everyone with a new and exciting opportunity to travel to new destinations far and wide. Now, last but not least, let’s meet Tana Williams who’s a personal finance blogger on a mission to stay debt-free and travel for free, too!

Tana Williams


Tana Williams, 43, of Columbus, Ohio is the Founder of Debt Free Forties, a personal finance blog about budgeting, saving money, making money, and getting out of debt. Not only has she personally paid off over $27,000 of debt in just 17 months, but she’s also been featured on various websites including The College Investor, Bankrate, Mint, Making Sense of Cents and many more!

She’s been a Chase Sapphire Preferred cardholder since January 2022. When she signed up, she received a 60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points signup bonus. What’s more? Tana tag teamed with her husband to earn even more points. Her husband already had the Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card and so she signed up for hers with his referral link. So, her husband earned a bonus 20,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points as a referral bonus (more free travel!). Between the two of them, they earned a cool 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points.

Tana and her husband used some of their points to pay for a 3-night hotel stay in downtown Nashville to celebrate her husband’s 50th birthday. While it wasn’t an exotic locale, it was a great way to honor an exciting milestone and visit a city neither of them had been to yet. What’s next? They plan on using the rest of their points to visit a tropical destination in the near term. Tana is very much looking forward to sipping fruity drinks and sitting pretty on a beach in the Caribbean, all thanks to points of course.

The Bottom Line

We’re feeling inflation all around us, up to an average of 8.6% as of May 2022 in fact, according to Inflation Calculator. While many of us are looking for ways to reduce expenses wherever possible, it’s not a bad idea to take advantage of the inflated cost of everything by using your Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card to make all of your purchases. The more you spend, the more Chase Ultimate Rewards points you’ll gain for free travel!

Also, these stories should’ve convinced you to be a Chase Sapphire Preferred cardholder, (if you’re not already), so apply now and start earning points for your next free vacation. You deserve it!

Read More: Credit Card Interest Rates Are Rising: Now’s The Time To Pay Off Debt