After looking over the fine print, I'll share with you pros and cons of Chase Freedom® so that you can decide for yourself if this is the best cash rewards card for your personal finances. As a prime cash back card, you need good to excellent credit in order to apply for it.
Things We Like About This Card
No annual fee. You don't have to pay any annual fee to enjoy the cash back rewards and other great cardholder benefits.
Earn a $100 Bonus. This is one of the best deals this card has to offer. You will receive this $100 Bonus after you sign up for your new card and spend just $500 on purchases in your first three months of having this card. This $500 spend cannot be in the form of balance transfers, cash advances or checks.
Earn a $25 Bonus after adding your first authorized user and making a purchase within this same 3-month period.
Receive 5% total cash back in quarterly rotating bonus categories like restaurants, gas stations and Amazon.com, for up to $1,500 in combined purchases each quarter (this is the catch!). 5% cash back is a lot, and this is one of the most attractive benefits this card has to offer. This 5% deal actually averages out to 2% cash back on every category throughout the year, if you take into account a 1% cash back on 3 quarters for the year! You'll be notified in advance which categories you will be able to benefit from each quarter and can then plan your spending for the year. It can help you save a lot of money if you use it to your advantage. The catch: you must activate each quarterly 5% program - it's free, and you can do so via phone, email, text message or online. The good thing is you can sign up for Chase Freedom 5% text reminders so that you will be informed promptly when the time comes for you to activate the next quarter.
- Jan 1 to March 31 - grocery stores (not including Walmart® and Target® purchases), movie theaters, and Starbucks® stores.
- April 1 to June 30 - Restaurants, Bed Bath & Beyond®, H&M®, and Overstock.com®.
- July 1 to Sept 30 - Gas stations and more
- Oct 1 to Dec 31 - Amazon.com and more.
Receive 1% cash back on all other purchases. This is a fantastic offer as 1% applies to all your spending, without any spending tiers or minimum/maximum cash back limit! Again, do note that it does not apply to balance transfers, cash advances, checks, travelers checks or money orders.
No earning limit and cash rewards never expire as long as your account is open. Accumulate as much cash back as you want, without worrying if and when it expires. There are also no spending tiers.
0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers. This introductory period is great if you want to make a big-ticket purchase and pay it over 15 months or if you want to transfer a balance from an existing card. After the introductory period, your annual percentage rate will be a 13.99% - 22.99% variable APR, depending on your credit score. Do note that you'll still have to pay a balance transfer fee of 3% of the amount you transfer, or $5 minimum.
Chase Blueprint feature included for free. The Blueprint program has certain features which help you repay your balances faster and save on interest. For example, you can choose to pay in full for certain types of purchases each month like gas or groceries so you don't pay any interest on them, even though you already owe a balance.
Our Least Favorite Things About This Card
The Chase Freedom card is such a solid credit card that we don't really dislike anything about it - and that's rare for us to say.
Chase Freedom is a great cash back card to get if you like cash rebates. Personally, I prefer cash back to getting rewards because with cash, you can buy whatever you like or use it however you want. A nice incentive offered to new card members is that you can get a $100 Bonus after you sign up and spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening - a big plus since you only need to spend less than $167 per month in order to get the $100 Bonus! You will also receive a $25 Bonus when you add your first authorized user and make a purchase within this same 3-month period. What I like best is that you get 5% total cash back on quarterly rotating categories (up to $1,500 in combined purchases per quarter), which can save you a lot of money if you plan your spending ahead of time.
As a Visa card, you will be able to use this card almost everywhere in the world. Chase Freedom® is a smart choice if you have good to excellent credit and are looking for a rewarding cash back card.