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As a flat rate rewards card, the Chase Freedom Unlimited® card offers a good introductory opportunity to get the hang of accumulating cash back. With 3% cash back for all purchases in your first year up to $20,000 spent (1.5% cash back on all purchases after) and no annual fee, it will not cost you anything to have this card in your wallet, and your rewards will never expire as long as you keep the card open.
- Simplified rewards: 3% cash back on all purchases in the first year up to $20,000 spent and an unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases after
- 0% intro annual percentage rate (APR) on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months
- No annual fee
- High APR
- No rotating cash back bonus categories
- Foreign transaction fee
- Requires good to excellent credit
For some folks, registering for rotating higher percentage cash back categories takes too much effort. If this describes you, you'll enjoy the 3% cash back on all purchases in the first year up to $20,000 spent and 1.5% cash back for all purchases after with the Chase Freedom Unlimited® card.
Maximize Points at Redemption
You'll get cash back rewards in the form of 3 points in the first year for every dollar spent up to $20,000 and 1.5 points for every dollar spent after that with no limits or caps. Each $1 in cash back earned is equal to 100 points. To get a higher value out of your accumulated points, redeem them through the company's Chase Ultimate Rewards site. Here you can use your points to redeem for any available reward options, such as cash, gift cards, travel, and products or services made available through the program—and you can often find some great deals and higher redemption values. You can also use points on deals from third-party merchants.
The Bottom Line
If you're just starting out with credit cards and want to get the maximum value out of your spending, Chase Freedom Unlimited® is a card that should be high on your list. The 3% cash back in the first year (up to $20,000 spent) and unlimited 1.5% cash back thereafter may not be the most competitive reward rates available, but it's not bad for those who don't want to fuss with rotating categories and want access to reward deals through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
On the other hand, if 5% cash back on rotating categories, such as gas, dining and wholesale clubs, sounds like a better fit for you, check out the Chase Freedom® card.
Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer or other company, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. All information, including rates and fees, are accurate as of the date of publication.
This article was originally published on February 15, 2019, and has been updated.