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Chase Freedom® Student Credit Card Review

Chase Freedom® Student Credit Card Review

*Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.

This article was last updated Jul 12, 2019. Terms and conditions may have changed. For the most accurate information, please consult the issuer website.

The information related to the Chase Freedom® Student credit card has been collected by CompareCards and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication. Terms apply to Chase credit card offers. See chase.com for more information.

If you are a student interested in building your credit and earning cash back on every purchase, the Chase Freedom® Student credit card, which launched in June 2019, is a great option. Along with a variety of tools to help promote responsible credit usage, the card offers a simple rewards structure and easily attainable sign-up bonus. Cardholders earn 1% cash back on all purchases and Earn a $50 bonus after making a purchase on your card within the first 3 months of account opening, when you apply for the card at a Chase branch.

In this review, we’ll break down the pros and cons of the Chase Freedom® Student credit card, as well as show how it compares to a similar no-fee, flat-rate student card.

Where the Chase Freedom® Student credit card stands out

Simple rewards structure. If you want a straightforward approach to earning rewards, the Chase Freedom® Student credit card offers just that. Instead of dealing with spending caps or bonus categories that rotate each quarter, the Chase Freedom® Student credit card lets cardholders earn 1% cash back on all purchases.

Sign-up bonus. Earn a $50 bonus after making a purchase on your card within the first 3 months of account opening, when you apply for the card at a Chase branch. You will receive the bonus in the form of 5,000 points, which can be redeemed for $50 cash back.

$20 Good Standing Rewards. Cardholders will receive 2,000 points (redeemable for $20) after each account anniversary for up to five years as long as your account is in good standing and not in default.

Credit limit increase. You will receive a credit limit increase when you make five monthly payments on time within 10 months from account opening and meet credit criteria.

Annual fee. The card offers a $0 annual fee.

Additional Chase Freedom® Student credit card benefits

  • Free, unlimited access to your credit score through Credit Journey
  • Zero liability protection for unauthorized charges made to your account
  • Purchase protection on new purchases for 120 days against damage or theft up to $500 per claim and $50,000 per account
  • Extended warranty protection for an additional year beyond the U.S. manufacturer’s warranty
  • Lock/unlock feature to block new purchases, cash advances and balance transfers
  • Contactless tap and pay feature

Where the Chase Freedom® Student credit card falls short

No intro APR. Because the Chase Freedom® Student credit card does not offer an introductory APR on purchases or balance transfers, it may not the best option if you plan to carry a balance or transfer a balance from a different credit card.

Modest rewards rate. Although the Chase Freedom® Student credit card offers cash back on every purchase, the rate is not very high compared to some other student credit cards. The Chase Freedom® Student credit card lets cardholders earn 1% cash back on all purchases while there are other student cards currently available that offer up to 5% cash back.

Compare it with the Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One®

The Chase Freedom® Student credit card isn’t the only no-fee student card that offers 1% cash back on every purchase. See how the card compares to the Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One® in the table below.

Chase Freedom® Student credit card Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One®
Annual fee $0 $0
Intro APR on purchases NA N/A
Intro APR on balance transfers NA N/A
Regular purchase APR 16.99% variable 26.46% (Variable)
Regular balance transfer APR 16.99% variable 26.46% (Variable)
Rewards Earn 1% cash back on all purchases 1% cash back on all purchases; 0.25% cash back bonus on the cash back you earn each month you pay on time
Sign-up bonus Earn a $50 bonus after making a purchase on your card within the first 3 months of account opening, when you apply for the card at a Chase branch. No bonus
Foreign transaction fee 3% of the amount of each transaction in U.S. dollars, whether originally made in U.S. dollars or converted from a foreign currency. $0

While both cards offer 1% cash back on every purchase, the Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One® lets cardholders earn a bonus on their rewards when they pay their bill on time.

With the Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One®, you’ll receive 1% cash back on all purchases; 0.25% cash back bonus on the cash back you earn each month you pay on time — which can essentially boost your rewards rate to 1.25% cash back on every purchase. And if you plan to spend a semester abroad or travel to a foreign destination during a school break, you’ll be happy to know that the Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One® does not charge foreign transaction fees. The Chase Freedom® Student credit card, on the other hand, charges 3% of the amount of each transaction in U.S. dollars, whether originally made in U.S. dollars or converted from a foreign currency.

That said, the Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One® does not offer a sign-up bonus, while the Chase Freedom® Student credit card does let cardholders Earn a $50 bonus after making a purchase on your card within the first 3 months of account opening, when you apply for the card at a Chase branch.

The Chase Freedom® Student credit card also offers a lower APR on purchases and balance transfers, making it the more appealing card of the two if you plan to carry a balance or transfer a balance from a different card — although we’d definitely recommend paying off your balance in full each month.

The bottom line

Though the Chase Freedom® Student credit card doesn’t offer the highest rewards rate among student credit cards, it is a solid option if you want a flat-rate card that charges a $0 annual fee. Additionally, because the Chase Freedom® Student credit card offers tools to help encourage responsible card usage, such as credit limit increases, free credit scores and credit bureau reporting, it is ideal for those looking to establish and build credit.


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