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The Chase Freedom card has been a tremendously successful rewards credit card by offering 5% cash back on up to $1,500 spent each quarter for rotating categories of purchases and 1% cash back elsewhere. But since not everyone wants to keep track of a rewards calendar, Chase introduced the Freedom Unlimited card, which offers solid cash back rewards like Chase Freedom at a consistent rate.
Introduction to the Chase Freedom Unlimited
Chase Freedom Unlimited®
- 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 16.74-25.49%. Balance transfer fee is 5% of the amount transferred, $5 minimum
- Unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase - it's automatic
- Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
- No minimum to redeem for cash back
- Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open
- Free credit score, updated weekly with Credit Journey℠
- No annual fee
Card Details +
Freedom Unlimited cardholders earn 1.5% cash back on every purchase, with no limits on the amount of rewards they can earn and no bonus categories to keep track of. Rewards can be redeemed for cash back, merchandise, gift cards, and travel reservations, and rewards never expire so long as your account remains open.
New applicants also receive promotional financing APR of 0% for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, with a 5% balance transfer fee ($5 minimum). After the promotional rate expires, the interest rate will be an APR of 16.74% - 25.49% Variable, depending on your creditworthiness when you apply. (You can check your credit scores for free on Credit.com to see where you stand, with updates every month.)
Other benefits include a purchase protection policy that covers new purchases for 120 days against damage or theft up to $500 per claim and $50,000 per account. Cardholders also receive a price protection policy that covers something purchased with the card is advertised for less than you paid in print or online within 90 days. This coverage reimburses you the difference of up to $500 per item and $2,500 per year. There is no annual fee for this card, but there is a foreign transaction fee of 3% imposed on all purchases that are processed outside of the U.S.
What’s the Current Signup Bonus?
New cardholders can receive a $150 bonus after spending $500 in purchases within three months of account opening. You can earn another $25 after adding an authorized cardholder who makes a purchase in the same three-month period.
The Advantages of the Chase Freedom Unlimited
Having this card allows you to earn a competitive amount of cash back on all purchases without keeping track of bonus categories. While the standard Chase Freedom card only offers 1% cash back on purchases (outside of revolving categories), Freedom Unlimited cardholders earn 1.5% cash back, which is 50% more rewards. In addition, the opportunity to earn up to $150 in cash back as a signup bonus is very attractive, especially for a card with no annual fee. And the 15 months of introductory financing on both purchases and balance transfers is a strong benefit that’s competitive with other offers in the industry right now.
The Disadvantages of the Chase Freedom Unlimited
Freedom cardholders who choose this new card are giving up the chance to earn 5% cash back at featured merchants when these bonus categories include retailers where they would normally spend money, so this card will fall short. And while the promotional financing offer can be valuable, the 5% balance transfer fee is larger than the 3% fee that is often standard with these types of financing offers. In addition, those who carry a balance could find cards with a lower interest rate that do not offer rewards for spending. (Not sure how credit card interest rates work? Here’s a primer.)
Who Is This Card Right For?
This card is ideal for those who are looking to earn competitive rewards without complicated terms and conditions. The standard Freedom Card requires customers to “activate” their bonus categories every quarter, but the Chase Freedom Unlimited does not. And while the standard Freedom card limits bonuses on featured categories to the first $1,500 spent each month, the Freedom Unlimited lives up to its name by not placing any limits on the amount of spending that qualifies for any kind of rewards. This is also a great rewards card for those who don’t want to pay an annual fee.
At publishing time, the Chase Freedom Unlimited and Chase Freedom cards are offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com is compensated if our users apply and ultimately sign up for these cards. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment. This content is not provided by the card issuer. Any opinions expressed are those of Credit.com alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the issuer.
Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees and terms with credit card issuers, banks or other financial institutions directly.
This article was last updated September 22nd, 2017. It was originally published May 13, 2016.