Chase Freedom Unlimited Card: The Chase Freedom Unlimited card provides a decent sign-up bonus and a flat 1.5 percent cashback option on general transactions for cardholders who want to keep things easy, plus it’s a perfect starting card for earning Chase Ultimate Rewards.
About Chase Freedom Unlimited
If you are the kind of cardholder who prefers a straightforward rewards program that lets you earn great cashback on every purchase you make, the Chase Freedom Unlimited is one of our favorite flat-rate cards. With a 1.5 percent cashback rate on everything you buy, it is easy to earn plenty of rewards – no matter how you weigh your spending.
Plus, Ultimate Rewards cardholders will enjoy the flexibility to transfer points between cards, allowing points hackers to stockpile enough rewards for their next vacation in no time.
Pros & Cons
Rewards don’t expire
No limits on cashback
Redeem any amount any time
Redeem for gift cards, travel, or Amazon.com merchandise
Transfer rewards as Ultimate Rewards point to other Chase cards
Offers a good sign up bonus
Provides 1.5% cashback on all eligible purchases
Offers a 0% APR on purchases and balance transfers
No bonus categories
Assesses a balance transfer fee
Charges a potentially high APR
People who want a simple rewards program
Consumers who need to transfer a balance or finance a large purchase
Fee-averse credit card users
Not Great for:
People who spend a lot on popular bonus categories
Consumers who want to maximize their rewards
Highlights of the Card
Best Freedom bonus offer: $200 cashback after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.
Earn unlimited 1.5% cashback on every purchase.
No annual fee
Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open.
Contactless – Just Tap To Pay
Zero Liability Protection
Covers your new purchases for 120 days against damage or theft up to $500 per claim and $50,000 per account.
Other Features of the Card
The earning rate on the Chase Freedom Unlimited is perfect for cardholders who don’t want to keep track of bonus categories or target spending on a specific kind of purchase. Instead, users receive 1.5 percent cash back for any purchase they make. As an added bonus, through March 2022 you’ll also earn 5 percent cash back on Lyft purchases.
The Chase Independence Unlimited card offers a $200 cashback incentive if you spend $500 in the first three months of card ownership. Previously, rather than receiving a flat cashback bonus, new Independence Unrestricted cardholders had the ability to receive an extra 1.5 percent cash back on all transactions in the first year for up to 3 percent cashback
Redeeming cash back
Once you’ve earned rewards, the Chase Freedom Unlimited is extremely flexible in how you redeem them, giving you plenty of different redemption options. If you want to use your points for cashback, you can redeem them for either a statement credit or direct deposit into your bank account.
You also have the option to use Freedom Unlimited points to pay for travel in the Ultimate Rewards portal. Just keep in mind that your points might have a different value depending on how you choose to redeem them.
Chase Freedom Unlimited redemption options
Point value (cents)
Balance transfer offer
The Chase Freedom Unlimited also comes with a decent balance transfer offer for new cardholders. It offers a 0 percent APR for the first 15 months of account opening (14.99 to 23.74 percent variable thereafter). This is a huge advantage for cardholders who need to pay off some debt over time without racking up extra interest – especially those who don’t want to sacrifice a big rewards program.
Intro APR for new purchases
The Chase Freedom Unlimited offers the same intro APR on new purchases, in addition to a 0 percent APR on balance transfers for the first 15 months (14.99 to 23.74 percent variable afterward). If you have a large purchase to make you want to pay off over time without incurring heavy interest charges, it can be a great strategy to sign up for this card. Just make sure you make a plan to pay off your balance before the introductory period ends, as the current APR may be high.
The Chase Freedom Unlimited comes with several perks that make it a valuable choice for frequent travelers. Here’s a quick look at some of the card’s benefits.
Car rental insurance – For car rentals booked and paid for with your card, you can receive secondary coverage in the case of damage or theft.
Purchase protection – If you purchase an item with your Freedom Unlimited and it is stolen or damaged in the first 120 days, you can be reimbursed up to $500 per claim (max $50,000 per account).
Extended warranty – Add an extra year to qualifying manufacturer’s warranties of three years or less.
Trip cancellation and interruption insurance – If you have to cancel or cut a trip short due to a covered circumstance such as severe weather or illness, you can be reimbursed for any non-refundable fares charged to your card.
To take full advantage of the card’s perks, put all major purchases on the Freedom Unlimited.
The Chase Freedom Unlimited is designed for users with good to excellent credit (above 670), so before applying, you’ll want to make sure you meet those qualifications. If you are concerned about your eligibility and want to avoid a hard pull on your credit, you can also take advantage of tools such as CardMatch™ to see if the offer matches you.
Additionally, when it comes to the number of accounts you can have open, Chase is one of the strictest issuers-holding new applicants to the 5/24 rule. This means that if you have opened five or more credit cards with any issuer in the past 24 months, you probably won’t get approved for the card.
Chase has a pretty good reputation for customer service amongst major issuers. The bank scored 807 in J.D. Power ‘s 2019 customer satisfaction survey – tied for third out of 11 card issuers. Chase’s mobile app rates well among users, rating Google Play Store 4.6 out of 5 and Apple App Store 4.8 out of 5.
One downside to Chase’s customer service is that there is no online chat option on the bank’s website which can make it difficult to get a fast answer to a simple question.
Who should get the Chase Freedom Unlimited card?
Cardholders who prefer a flat rate of cashback to keep track of bonus categories.
Cardholders looking for a generous introductory offer.
Ultimate Rewards cardholders who want to pair a good flat-rate card with a card that earns more points in particular bonus categories.
Frequent travelers who will take advantage of the card’s protections and insurances.
You’re a frequent Lyft ride-share user.
How to use the Chase Freedom Unlimited card:
Spend at least $500 on the card in the first three months to secure the sign-up bonus.
Use the card as your go-to for general purchases.
Use the card for all Lyft rides.
Consider pairing the card with another Ultimate Rewards card such as the Sapphire Preferred or the Chase Freedom® to get more value out of your Ultimate Rewards points.
Intend to pair the card with Chase Sapphire Preferred Card or Chase Sapphire Reserve
The Chase Freedom Unlimited offers a standard cashback rate for a flat-rate card which makes it easy to earn good rewards on everyday purchases. What really distinguishes the card is the ability to pass rewards on to other Chase Ultimate credit cards. Freedom Unlimited is a great option if you are looking for a good card to pair with other reward cards to maximize the rewards potential.