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Chase Freedom Unlimited Review

Chase Freedom Unlimited Review

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This article was last updated Jul 17, 2020. Terms and conditions may have changed. For the most accurate information, please consult the issuer website.

If you’re looking for a credit card that earns rewards on every purchase, but don’t want the hassle of dealing with complicated rewards structures and spending limits, you should consider a credit card that offers a flat cashback rate on every purchase – like the Chase Freedom Unlimited®.

We break down the pros and cons of the Chase Freedom Unlimited® card, and show how it compares to the Chase Freedom® – which offers a higher cashback rate in categories that rotate every quarter.

The $0 annual fee card lets cardholders earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases. Plus, cardholders earn the following sign-up bonus: Earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. Earn 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target® or Walmart® purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.

Chase Freedom Unlimited® rewards – which won’t expire as long as your account remains open and in good standing – can be redeemed for cash, gift cards, travel or products and services. You can also use your points to pay for all or part of purchases at participating Chase Pay merchants.

Chase Freedom Unlimited® pros

Cashback sign-up bonus. Earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. Earn 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target® or Walmart® purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.

Simple rewards structure. If you don’t want to deal with bonus categories or spending limits, the Chase Freedom Unlimited® card is ideal, since cardholders earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases.

Intro APR on purchases. The Chase Freedom Unlimited® card offers a 0% Intro APR for 15 months on purchases. This gives you more than a year to pay off large purchases without incurring interest charges. Once the introductory period ends, you will be subject to interest charges at a rate of 14.99% - 23.74% variable APR on any remaining balance.

Annual fee. The Chase Freedom Unlimited® card comes with a $0 annual fee – which is pretty typical for a consumer credit card that offers a flat cashback rewards rate.

Read: Best Flat-Rate Cashback and Rewards Credit Cards

Additional Chase Freedom Unlimited® benefits:

  • DoorDash membership. Complimentary three-month membership to DashPass from DoorDash, when you activate by Dec. 31, 2021.
  • Rewards on Lyft. Earn 5% cash back on Lyft rides through March 2022.
  • Purchase protection. Covers new purchases against damage or theft for 120 days against damage, up to $500 per claim and $50,000 per account.
  • Extended warranty protection. Receive an additional year of protection beyond the time period of the U.S. manufacturer’s warranty (on eligible warranties of three years or less).
  • Free FICO® Score. Free and unlimited access to your credit score through Chase Credit Journey.
  • Fraud protection. Real-time fraud monitoring for possible signs of unauthorized activity.
  • Zero-liability protection. You won’t be liable for any unauthorized charges.

Chase Freedom Unlimited® cons

No intro APR on balance transfers. If you have a large amount of high interest credit card debt that you want to transfer, the Chase Freedom Unlimited® card may not be a good fit, since the card does not offer a 0% intro APR on balance transfers. Additionally, the card charges a balance transfer fee of either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.

Read: Best Balance Transfer Credit Cards

Higher cashback rates available. While the opportunity to earn 1.5% cash back on every purchase is satisfactory, there are several flat-rate cards available that offer 2% cash back on every purchase.

Compare it with the Chase Freedom®

If you want the opportunity to earn a higher cashback rate in popular spending categories, such as groceries, dining and gas, the Chase Freedom® card may be a better fit.

The card offers the following rewards rate:  Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate. Enjoy new 5% categories every 3 months. Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.

Read: Chase Freedom® 5% Bonus Category Calendar

Plus, Chase Freedom® cardholders earn a $200 bonus after spending $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.

See how the cards stack up side by side.

Chase Freedom Unlimited® vs. Chase Freedom®

 Chase Freedom Unlimited®Chase Freedom®
Annual fee$0$0
Sign-up bonusEarn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. Earn 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target® or Walmart® purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.Earn a $200 Bonus after spending $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.
Rewards rateEarn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases.Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate. Enjoy new 5% categories every 3 months. Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.
Purchase APR0% Intro APR for 15 months, then 14.99% - 23.74% variable0% Intro APR on Purchases for 15 months, then 14.99% to 23.74% variable
Balance transfer APRN/A intro, then 14.99 - 23.74% variable0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers for 15 months, then 14.99% to 23.74% Variable
Balance transfer feeEither $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Foreign transaction fees3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars

If you max out the spend limit for the Chase Freedom® card every quarter, you can earn $300 cash back on those purchases at the end of the year. Once you factor in the sign-up bonus, that amount jumps to $500 during the first year of card membership.

By comparison, if you use the Chase Freedom Unlimited® card to make those same purchases each quarter, you’ll earn $90 back at the end of the year. After adding in the sign-up bonus, that amount increases to $240 during the first year of card membership.

Just know, with the Chase Freedom® card, if you don’t activate the bonus categories each quarter, you will only earn 1% cash back on every purchase you make.

Which credit card is best for me?

The Chase Freedom Unlimited® card is a good option for those who want a simple approach to earning cashback rewards. But if you want the opportunity to earn a higher cashback rate – and don’t mind activating bonus categories or keeping track of spending limits each quarter – the Chase Freedom® card will be a better fit.

Or, if you want to maximize your earning potential, you should consider signing up for both cards. That way, you can use the Chase Freedom® card to earn the higher cashback rate in bonus categories each quarter, and use the Chase Freedom Unlimited® card to earn 1.5% cash back on all other purchases.

The information related to Chase Freedom® has been independently collected by CompareCards and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.


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