Credit card review – Chase Freedom Unlimited Credit Card

The Chase Freedom Unlimited has long been a favorite among fans of cash-back credit cards, but the card may now hold even greater appeal for rewards-savvy cardholders looking to get started with Chase Ultimate Rewards.


Chase revamped the Freedom Unlimited card’s rewards scheme last year to offer bonus cash back on travel purchased through the Ultimate Rewards portal, as well as on dining and drugstore purchases. Meanwhile, the 1.5 percent cashback rate on general purchases and valuable perks like travel cancellation/interruption insurance and DoorDash DashPass make the card worth holding onto for budding travelers and low-maintenance cashback enthusiasts alike.

Just keep in mind that you’ll need excellent credit to qualify or prequalify, and, although the card offers a solid average cashback rate, you’ll get the most value out of your rewards when you pair the Freedom Unlimited with a higher-tier Chase travel credit card.


What are the advantages and disadvantages?


●          No annual fee


●          Boost rewards value when you transfer points to a higher-tier Chase card

●          Comes with an introductory APR on new purchases and balance transfers

●          Great benefits for a no annual fee card, including travel cancellation/interruption insurance and complimentary DoorDash DashPass



●          You’ll only get 5 percent back on travel if you book through the Ultimate Rewards portal

●          The intro 3 percent balance transfer fee ($5 minimum) increases to 5 percent ($5 minimum) for transfers after your first 60 days


●          The first-year 1.5 percent reward rate boost to all cashback bonus categories (on up to $20,000 in combined purchases) isn’t likely to be as valuable for average spenders as the previous first-year offer

Quick highlights

●          Rewards Rate: 5 percent cash back on Lyft purchases (through March 2022); 5 percent cash back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards; 3 percent cash back on dining; 3 percent cash back on drugstore purchases; 1.5 percent cash back on all purchases


●          Welcome Offer: Earn an additional 1.5 percent cashback on top of all purchases’ original cashback rate (on up to $20,000) for the first year (offer through Bankrate)

●          Annual Fee: $0

●          Purchase Intro APR: 0 percent for 15 months


●          Balance Transfer Intro APR: 0 percent for 15 months (Intro Balance Transfer Fee: $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater in the first 60 days)

●          Regular APR: 15.24 percent to 23.99 percent (variable)

Current welcome offer


By applying through Bankrate or our CardMatch pre-approval tool, all of your rewards rates will be boosted by an additional 1.5 percent cashback during your first year (on up to $20,000 in combined purchases)—meaning you’ll earn 3 percent to 6.5 percent on all purchases, based on your bonus category:

●          5 percent back on Chase Ultimate Rewards travel

●          5 percent back on restaurant, eligible takeout, and delivery purchases


●          5 percent back on drugstore purchases

●          3 percent on all other purchases

This could be incredibly rewarding for big spenders since maxing out the $20,000 spending limit would rake in $300 of cashback—more than the standard $200 bonus for spending $500 on purchases in the first three months that the Chase Freedom Flex (its sibling card) and many other no annual fee cash back cards provide. Granted, the Freedom Unlimited imposes a longer time commitment and higher eventual spending requirement, but the 1.5 percent rewards rate boost is one of the most lucrative first-year offers in its class if it already aligns with your spending.


It’s even a better deal if your budget is a bit more modest. We estimate the average cardholder spends about $15,900 per year, which would still net you an additional $238 on top of your normal cashback with the overarching 1.5 percent rewards boost.

However, the card’s previous offer stacked 5 percent cash back at grocery stores (excluding Walmart and Target) on up to $12,000 in purchases during your first year. Based on the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) latest Consumer Expenditures report data, you would have earned a stellar $247 (calculated from the average $4,942 grocery spend in 2020) from the limited-time grocery store category alone.

The current offer still delivers a generous cash backhaul well worth considering compared to rival cards’ offerings, but Chase’s new offer, albeit unique, may be a step down from what they’ve presented in the past for some cardholders.


Generous cash back

With its recent refresh, the Chase Freedom Unlimited stands out as one of the most valuable no-annual-fee cash back cards on the market. The Freedom Unlimited earns Chase Ultimate Rewards points that can be redeemed for cash back at a 1:1 rate—which makes the Freedom Unlimited uniquely valuable as a beginner’s rewards credit card if you’re looking to travel with a premium Chase card down the road.

How you earn


Freedom Unlimited earns 5 percent cash back on all travel purchased via the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and on Lyft purchases (through March 2022), 3 percent back on dining (including eligible takeout and delivery purchases), and 3 percent back at drugstores. Those bonus categories are in addition to the unlimited 1.5 percent cash back the card earns on all other purchases.

This combination of a solid base cashback rate and a generous bonus cashback rate in multiple categories makes the Freedom Unlimited a very valuable no-annual-fee credit card and a great entry point for frequent travelers who want to get started with credit card rewards.

How to redeem


Chase Freedom Unlimited gives you a ton of options on how to use your prizes. You can choose to get a refund in the form of a credit statement or direct deposit, use travel or gift cards, or shop online at Like many other credit cards, you can also redeem your donation prizes (currently with a 25 percent increase).

You can also combine your prizes with a premium Ultimate Rewards card, such as a Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, Chase Sapphire Reserve®, or Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card to enjoy more flexibility, such as being able to move your prizes to one of Chase’s. transfer partners in a 1: 1 ratio.

How much are the rewards?


The number of Chase Freedom Unlimited awards will vary depending on how you choose to use it. Here’s a look at what kind of value you would expect on average for each redemption method:

● Refund (credit statement or deposit): 1 cent

● Travel: 1 cent


● Gift cards: 1 cent

● Buying apples: 1 cent

● Purchase of 0.8 cents


● Donations: 1,25 cents

If you have a premium Ultimate Rewards card, you can get more value for your points: Combine your prizes with the popular Sapphire Preferred or Ink Business Preferred cards and use them to travel on the Ultimate Rewards website and you will enjoy a value of 1.25 cents per point, a 25 percent increase if compared to the amount you will get redeemed for a refund. It’s even better with Sapphire Reserve, as your points cost 1.5 cents each if used to navigate through the Top Rewards website.

Other benefits of Chase Freedom Unlimited


While the benefits of a Chase Freedom Unlimited card can compete with those you would get on a luxury travel card like Sapphire Reserve, the card still offers some unique customer quality benefits in addition to an annual payment card. Here are a few highlights:

Complimentary DashPass registration

Well-matched with the Freedom Unlimited gift card bonus on food purchases, DashPass is a subscription service from renowned food delivery company DoorDash that receives unlimited deliveries with a delivery fee of $ 0 on orders over $ 12. Freedom Unlimited comes with a three-month free DashPass membership, after which — if you do not cancel in advance — you are automatically subscribed to DashPass at 50 percent monthly rate (usually $ 9.99 per month) for the next nine months. Make sure you qualify by opening before March 31, 2022.


Purchase protection and installation of extended warranty

If a card purchase is damaged or stolen within 120 days of your purchase, Freedom Unlimited covers up to $ 500 per claim and $ 50,000 per account. Also, certificates from a qualified U.S. manufacturer for three years or less your card purchases are extended annually.

Travel cancellation and disruption insurance


Travel cancellation insurance and inconvenience are important benefits if the trip looks uncertain. Plus, you usually only get this coverage with travel cards that carry the hottest annual fee. If your trip is canceled or canceled due to illness, extreme weather, or other covered circumstances, you may be refunded up to $ 1,500 per person and $ 6,000 for each paid trip ticket and non-refundable fare.

Chase Pay yourself

Starting last October, Chase expanded the Pay Yourself to Chase Freedom card series, which can make your prizes an incredible potential. Pay yourself Allows you to use the points to cover purchases you have made in the past 90 days with a 25 to 50 percent price increase.


At this time, Freedom Unlimited can use Pay Yourself to cover donations to 12 selected organizations at a cost of 1.25 cents-per-point (until Dec. 31, 2022).

However, you may be able to pay for the latest Airbnb purchases and to travel with with Sapphire Preferred (25% boost) or Sapphire Reserve card (50% boost) until March 31, 2022. This means you can use your Freedom Unlimited to collect. prizes in categories outside of Sapphire Reserve access and joins the Reserve with a good rescue rate of 1.5 cents per trip beyond the normal range of the Prize portal.

The best cards to match with Chase Freedom Unlimited


While you can pair Chase Freedom Unlimited with any number of credit card offers that offer different benefits or categories of prizes, it is wise to pair this card with another Chase Premier credit card if you want to travel — especially Sapphire Reserve or Preferred.

You can combine all your points into one Chase Ultimate Rewards account for a higher redemption rate and you can even combine points with a spouse or partner living at the same address, as well as any Chase business credit card accounts you may have.

Pairing with Reserve or Favorites also gives you the option to transfer points to the famous Chase airline and its hotel partners such as Southwest Rapid Rewards, United MileagePlus, British Airways, Marriott Bonvoy, and IHG Rewards.


As a reminder, if you have both Freedom Unlimited and the Reserve, you can enjoy extra value when using points to navigate through the Chase site (Reserve gives you a 50% higher value if you use it this way — Preferred offers a 25% increase ).

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