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Chase Freedom®

Chase Freedom® - Not the best, but you could certainly do worse. 

The Chase Freedom card is a staple in many cash back connoisseur's wallet. The card earns 5% cash back in rotating categories each quarter on up-to $1,500 in spend. You'll earn 1% cash back on all other purchases. You have to sign up for the spend category each quarter, which let's be honest, we struggle to remember to make our kids lunches for school. If you can tackle that problem, you'll be alright. Also, can you send us a reminder about school lunches? Thanks. 

The Freedom really shines when you pair it with either the Chase Sapphire Preferred or the Chase Sapphire Reserve. If you hold either of those cards, you'll be able to redeem your points for 1.25 cents each (Preferred) or 1.5 cents each (Reserve) when used to book travel. That means your cash back earning is boosted to 6.25% and 7.5% respectively. The Freedom has some other unique perks that may make it worth keeping in your wallet.


Counting Your Pennies - How To Earn Cash Back with the Chase Freedom®

Swipe.That.Plastic. It's pretty straight forward. Freedom earns cash back on your everyday purchases. Sign up for your rotating categories. Redeeming is just as easy. Redeem any amount of points for a statement credit. 1 point equals a penny when redeemed as a statement credit. Be a pro and sock that cash back away in a savings or investment account. 

Chase has their own payment platform, Chase Pay. You can use points to pay for purchases in real time if you'd like, but points will only be worth .8 cents each. You lose value here, which will make your penny jar sad. You can also redeem points for travel using Chase's travel center. Complete terms for redemption requirements can be found here. With that being said, if you are going to be traveling, we strongly recommend picking up either a Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Sapphire Reserve card to round out your Chase Ultimate Rewards portfolio. Your points will be worth more when redeemed for travel.


Chase Freedom Benefits and Bonuses 

Besides offering some rewards categories that you'll have to follow on a quarterly basis, does the Chase Freedom have other redeeming qualities?

  • Earn a $150 bonus after you make $500 in purchases in the first 3 months of account opening
  • Enjoy a 0% APR on purchases and eligible balance transfers for 15 months. Then, a variable APR of 17.24% - 25.99% applies. Balance transfers are subject to a 3% fee, which is equal to $30 for every $1,000 you need to transfer
  • Cash back earned with the Freedom can be transferred to Ultimate Rewards if you have another Chase product with an annual fee, like the Sapphire Preferred or Sapphire Reserve. This is where the rotating categories really shine.


Who Should Get the Chase Freedom?

First off, you should have good to excellent credit if you plan to get the bonus for new customers. Applicants with average credit may not be eligible for the bonus, but still eligible for the card. 

This card will treat you well if you are looking for cash back, low APRs for a balance transfer or to finance a new purchase, or to dabble in using rewards for travel. It doesn't have an annual fee, so you really have nothing to lose other than opportunity cost. If travel is high on your list of things to do, then pair this with another Ultimate Rewards card down the road and you'll be set. Even if you're in a spot where you are carrying a balance month to month, this card is okay, since the first 15 months come with an introductory rate. Just clean up your spending habits before that intro period ends, eh?


Who Shouldn’t Get It?

Anyone who has opened more than 5 credit cards in the last 24 months. Your application will be auto declined. You may as well be dead to Chase for credit card purposes at this point. It's a real thing.

If you're not interested in learning how to transfer points to travel partners and you don't want to keep up with rotating categories a credit card like the Uber Visa will likely treat you better. The cash back earning structure is straight forward and you'll earn 4% on dining and 3% on travel with no annual fee and no foreign transaction fee.


Common Cents

Freedom is a solid choice for beginners looking to start their cash back journey and work their way up to a travel card like the Sapphire Preferred. It's a solid card for someone that needs an intro APR balance transfer or new purchase rate. It's also good for the seasoned traveler that holds a card in the Sapphire family. It's not the best for someone that applies for a lot of credit cards or if you have a higher end travel card with another bank, or if you just plan on using a card for simple cash back indefinitely. 


Chase Freedom® Highlights

  • 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
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate
  • Enjoy new 5% categories each quarter
  • Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - it's automatic
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open and there is no minimum to redeem for cash back.
  • Free credit score, updated weekly with Credit Journey℠
  • No annual fee

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Uber Credit Card


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  • 3% Cash Back on Hotel and Airfare
  • 2% Cash Back on Online Purchases (Including Uber)
  • 1% Cash Back on everything else
  • No Annual Fee

SavorOne℠ Rewards


  • $0 Annual Fee
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Chase Sapphire Reserve℠


  • Automatically receive up to $300 in statement credits as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • Earn 3X points on travel worldwide from airfare and hotels to taxis and trains
  • Earn 3X points on dining at restaurants worldwide from fast casual to fine dining
  • Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • $450 Annual Fee
  • Terms Apply