Chase Freedom Review – The Perfect Credit Card?

Review of: Chase Freedom® Visa
Chase Freedom® Visa

Reviewed by:
Rating:
5
On April 25, 2012
Last modified:September 25, 2014

Summary:

The card offers excellent bonus cash, a 0% introductory rate, cash back rewards, and no annual fee.

I’ve been reviewing credit cards for a good number of years now. And throughout it all, I’ve found it very difficult to pick the best all around card. The difficulty is that the best credit cards typically excel at one feature, like having a low interest rate, the longest 0% offer, or the best rewards. And what might be the top card for one person may not be the right choice for somebody else.

But if I had to pick the best card, the Chase Freedom® MasterCard (which I’ve used for several years) would likely be my choice. And the card has gone through some substantial changes lately. Chase use to offer a number of versions of the card. Recently, however, it simplified the card to one version. The reason I like the card as the best overall option is that both its cash back rewards and 0% introductory rate are excellent, a combination that is hard to find in a single card. And it has no annual fee.
Here are the card’s benefits in a nutshell:

  • Earn a $100 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
  • 5% Cash Back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases between October 1 — December 31, 2014 at Amazon.com, Zappos.com and select department stores
  • Earn a $25 Bonus after you add your first authorized user and make a purchase within this same 3-month period
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers. After the intro period, a variable APR of 13.99%-22.99%
  • You'll enjoy new 5% categories every 3 months like gas stations, restaurants and Amazon.com. It's free and easy to activate your bonus each quarter!
  • Unlimited 1% Cash Back on all other purchases
  • No annual fee and rewards never expire
  • This offer is for people with a good to excellent credit history which means, among other things, that your credit history is clear of bankruptcy and seriously delinquent accounts

The card is designed for consumers with excellent credit looking to earn cash back. The Chase Freedom has a variety of perks and features that continue to make consumers vote it best overall credit card.

0% Introductory Interest Rate

Until recently, the Chase Freedom offered a 0% rate on balance transfers for 12 months. Now the card has extended the introductory rate to 15 months. As with most balance transfer offers, there is a transfer fee of 3% of the amount transferred (minimum $5). You can find longer 0% balance transfer offers. And the Chase Freedom® MasterCard offers a no fee balance transfer option. But these other offers won’t give you the cash back features that come with the Chase Freedom® MasterCard.

The Chase Freedom® MasterCard card also offers 0% on purchases for 15 months. This too is an improvement, as the card use to offer this introductory rate for just six months.

Cash Back

The Chase Freedom® MasterCard is one of a few 5% cash back credit cards. Here’s how it works. Every year, Chase Freedom® MasterCard puts together a calendar of categories in which consumers will earn 5% cash back.  Each quarter the maximum cash back that can be earned with the 5% categories is $75 (5% of $1,500).  Once you’ve exhausted this amount, all purchases receive 1% cash back.

It’s important to remember that you must log into your account and signup for these quarterly categories to get the 5% cash back. It just takes a few seconds, but you don’t want to forget.

$100 Cash Bonus

Chase Freedom offers a $100 cash bonus after you spend $500 on the card in the first three months.

Published or Updated: September 25, 2014
About Rob Berger

Rob founded the Dough Roller in 2007. A litigation attorney in the securities industry, he lives in Northern Virginia with his wife, their two teenagers, and the family mascot, a shih tzu named Sophie.

Comments

  1. $200 offer is very tempting. Can people get this credit card even if you already have chase visa?

    • DR says:

      You can so long as you don’t already have a Chase Freedom card. I have both the Freedom and the Slate from Chase.

      • Debbie M says:

        Weird. I had a Chase Freedom card and two other Chase cards and both of the other ones turned into Chase Freedom cards. I canceled one (which still shows up on the home page every day), I use one, and my boyfriend uses the other. So, they don’t mind sticking you with another Chase Freedom card themselves when you already have one (or two).

  2. Tax Savings says:

    Innovative change in credit card industry! Will this be a catalyst for the shift towards plastic currency? Time will tell. But it will be interesting to look at what credit rates and other benefits / penalties are associated with Chase Freedom card. Generally, for lucrative offers like this, the penalties for late payment and default would also be very high.

  3. Those are indeed great offers. I use the Chase Freedom Credit card along with two others. It indeed offers great rewards. It is even better if you use credit cards to your advantage and use them according to the rewards that they offer.

  4. Mike says:

    I just recd a mailingr from Chase for a Freedom Card offering a $300.00 bonus which would be available to me after my 1st purchase with the card. The offer doesn’t mention anything about having to purchase $500. worth of goods in order to get this bonus. I actually called them to clarify that this was legit since it sounded to good to be true. Why would they give me a ck for $300. if I make only a small purchase with the card? Also they have no hope of making any money on interest from me since I pay in full every month. The CS rep I spoke to confirmed that my understanding was correct and I had no further obligation to use the card again but it was their hope with this offer that I would use the card in the future for the 1%-5% cash back privilege that came with it. Guess I’ll just add this card to my collection after I get the $300. bonus!

  5. Rita Levin says:

    Would like an application to apply for the $300.00 cash back credit card from Chase. I have excellent credit.
    Thank you.
    Rita Levin

  6. Rita Levin says:

    Would be interested in receiving credit application for your $300.00 cash back promotion for a credit card.
    Rita Levin
    5445 Preston Oaks Rd, #223, Dallas, TX 75254
    972-386+6874

  7. Kevin Nies says:

    The old bait and switch – don’t fall for it. There are too many rules when trying to get you cash back. Go with the Penfed card. Straight talk and no gimmicks.

    • Rob Berger says:

      Kevin, the Penfed card is a good one, although it can be hard to qualify for. Curious though why you say that there are too many rules to get your cash back. I’ve used the Chase Freedom for years without any issues.

  8. Sharon Pichai says:

    I find it very easy to use the Chase Freedom card. As soon as my billing cycle closes for the month, my Ultimate Rewards points appear. I can, if I choose, immediately request a statement credit for some or all of my points.

  9. Eric says:

    Because I also have a Chase checking account, I get an extra 10% cash back on every purchase (1.1%/5.5%) plus $.10 on every transaction.

    I also love Chase’s auto pay feature, which is set to pay my balance in full on the due date, but will reduce that payment by any returns or other payments I’ve made. That way I know whatever I do, it will automatically pay the smallest payment to avoid every paying interest.

  10. Robert says:

    I want to apply for this card, but am afraid to because of all the reviews on this company. Charging people late fees, not helping them get rid of charges that were not theirs, cutting people’s credit limit. I was so excited to get this card. Do you think I should get this card because I don’t want to be one of the people who get robbed by these people.

    • Rob Berger says:

      Robert, I can’t speak to other people’s experience, but I’ve carried Chase credit cards for years, and I’ve never had any problems.

  11. John Edward Akers says:

    i WOULD LIKE TO PURCHASE A 500 DOLLAR PRE PAID CREDIT CARD.
    WOULD YOU PLEASE SEND ME INFORMATION ON HOW i can do this.

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