Chase Freedom Card Review

Get Cash-Back with This Rewards Card

Chase Freedom credit card
Image courtesy Chase

The Chase Freedom Card​ might be a better alternative to the Discover Card for some. Since it's a Visa or MasterCard, it's more widely accepted. It also pays higher rewards than Discover.

The Chase Freedom Card Basics

The Chase Freedom credit card was designed for people who want to earn cash rewards on their credit card spending. Consumers with fair to excellent credit (660+) can qualify.

In addition to the rewards, the Chase Freedom card offers 0 percent interest for first 15 billing cycles on purchases and balance transfers then 12.99 to 22.99 percent APR after the introductory period ends, depending on your credit history.

Cash advances carry a higher APR between 19.24 percent or 23.24 percent. As to be expected, the card's penalty APR is highest at 29.99 percent.

While the Chase Freedom credit card comes with no annual fee, it does include other common credit card fees, including:

Chase Freedom Card Fees 
Annual FeeNone
Late Payment FeeUp to $35
Over-the-Limit FeeNone
Return Payment FeeUp to $35
Balance Transfer Fee$5 or 3 percent of balance
Cash Advance Fee$10 or 3 percent of cash advance

 

 

 

 

 


Pros, Cons, and Rewards of the Chase Freedom Credit Card

Pros 

  • Higher than average cash back rewards.
  • Rewards can also be redeemed for merchandise, travel, and gift cards.
  • Unlimited rewards that never expire.

Cons 

  • You must sign up to get the 5 percent cash back premium.

Rewards

  • 5 percent back on purchases in specific categories (e.g. gasoline, groceries)
  • 1 percent back on everything else
  • $100 cashback bonus for making $500 in purchases in the first three months of account opening
  • 10 percent bonus if you also have a Chase checking account.
  • Up to 20 percent back at Chase merchant partners.

Chase Freedom Visa or MasterCard Review

The Chase Freedom Card, introduced a few years ago, is Chase's answer to the Discover Card, with a similar rewards structure: 5 percent on categories that rotate every three months.

But, since it's a MasterCard or Visa card, it's accepted at more places than Discover and American Express.

You can earn 5 percent. For example, from January to March 2013, you could earn 5 percent on spending at gas stations, drugstores, and Starbucks stores. However, to get that bonus, you must proactively sign up with Chase, either by phone or online (Discover has a similar program).

Cash rewards can be redeemed for as little as $20 (same as Discover); they can also be redeemed for travel, gift cards, and merchandise.

Chase Freedom Card includes Chase's new Blueprint program, which allows you to pay off some of your purchases without incurring interest while setting up a payment plan for the rest.

Recommendation

I would recommend the Chase Freedom Card to those looking for a cash-back rewards card. However, avoid carrying a balance on this card. Never carry a balance on the same card where you're trying to earn rewards - you'll just wind up increasing the size of your balance, which will only increase your finance charges, more than wiping out any rewards you earn.

Credit card pricing, terms, and rewards are subject to change. Check the card issuer's website for the latest credit card deals.