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- Earn 1.5% cash back on all purchases
Why earn just 1.5% cashback over the long term when there's a host of cards offering 2% or more back on everyday purchases? The answer lies in the Freedom Unlimited belonging to the Ultimate Rewards family of credit cards.
You can combine the Cash Back Rewards points earned on the Freedom Unlimited, with Ultimate Rewards points from the Chase Sapphire Reserve®, Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, or the Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card. Those points can then be redeemed for a higher fixed-value through the Chase Travel Portal, or transferred to airline and hotel partners for even higher returns.
The Chase Freedom Unlimited® earns a $150 bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. While this is far from the most lucrative welcome offer, this card's long-term earning potential makes it a rewards heavyweight.
Chase Freedom Unlimited Earning Potential
Cardmembers earn an unlimited 1.5% cashback on every purchase, delivered to your account as Ultimate Rewards points (1x point = $0.01). There are no bonus categories to track—just a flat earning rate for every dollar spent on all purchases. The Freedom Unlimited works best as a companion card to Ultimate Rewards earning cards like the Sapphire Preferred and Sapphire Reserve, which receive just 1 point per dollar on non-bonus spending. As a companion card, you can place all non-bonus purchases on the Freedom Unlimited, and earn an excellent 1.5x points for every dollar you spend.
As an example of the value the Freedom Unlimited offers, every dollar spent earns 1.5x points. If you transfer those points to the Sapphire Reserve, you can redeem them for 1.5¢ per point through the Chase Travel Portal, giving you a 2.25¢ (or 2.25%) return per dollar on all non-bonus spending. You can potentially get even higher returns transferring those points out to Ultimate Rewards travel partners.
The Ultimate Rewards family of cards includes:
- Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
- Chase Sapphire Reserve®
- Chase Freedom®
- Chase Freedom Unlimited®
- Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
- Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card
With no annual fee, the Freedom Unlimited doesn’t include the same long list of benefits as some of its Ultimate Rewards stablemates, but you still get an excellent package of features for a card you can hold for the long term without any out of pocket expense. Highlights include:
- Ability to combine points with other cards in the Ultimate Rewards stable and redeem for higher value – See our post on building the ultimate travel rewards combo for more details.
- Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases.
- No annual fee
- No minimum required to redeem cashback and your Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is in good standing
- 0% Intro APR on Purchases for 15 months. After the intro period, a variable APR of 14.99 - 23.74% will apply.
Chase features some of the more limiting application restrictions of the major credit card providers. Limitations include:
- 5/24 policy – If you’ve been approved for five or more new credit cards in the previous 24 months from any provider, it's highly unlikely you'll be approved for the Freedom Unlimited.
- 90-day policy – You can only receive one personal and one business card from Chase every 90 days.
For more details, check out our post covering application restrictions for major credit card providers.
The Freedom Unlimited is not likely the first card you’ll apply for, especially if you’re looking to fill out Chase rewards cards under the 5/24 policy. But as a companion card to other Ultimate Rewards earning cards like the Sapphire Preferred, Sapphire Reserve, or Ink Preferred, the Freedom Unlimited provides a fantastic return on non-bonus spend, allowing you to maximize the points earned on purchases that don’t fall under bonus categories on other cards.
In addition to a a $150 bonus, the card features an excellent intro APR on purchases, and you’ll never have to pay an annual fee as long as you hold the card. Keep in mind; the Freedom Unlimited is subject to Chase’s 5/24 policy, so you’re better off applying for Chase’s premium Ultimate Rewards cards before using a valuable 5/24 slot for this card.
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