One way to maximize your money is to use credit cards responsibly. The right rewards credit card can provide you with cash back or other valuable rewards. When choosing a credit card, it’s important to consider the rewards program and other benefits — along with whether you’re likely to get what you need from the card.
When considering which card to get, don’t forget to compare the Chase Freedom Card with other choices. You might be surprised at what the Chase Freedom’s benefits can offer.
Overview: Chase Freedom Card
The Chase Freedom credit card is a rotating category card that offers cash back on every purchase. There’s no annual fee, and you also get access to a 0% APR for purchases and balance transfers.
Additionally, you have the opportunity to earn rewards with your spending. You get 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in purchases made in bonus categories each quarter and 1% cash back on all other purchases.
Your cashback rewards are tracked as points that never expire and can be redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
Those points can be used for cash back or other options, such as travel or gift cards. If you choose cash back, you can redeem it using a statement credit or by having the money deposited into a checking or savings account of your choice.
For a card that offers these rewards, the Chase Freedom is a low-cost option for earning cash back on spending you do every day.
9 Chase Freedom benefits you can’t miss
The benefits that come with the Chase Freedom go beyond just a rewards program. Even though Chase Freedom’s price protection program was discontinued in 2018, there are still plenty of perks to take advantage of with this credit card.
1. Sign-up bonus
When you spend $500 in purchases during the first three months of card membership, you receive $150 as a signing bonus. However, you must be a new cardholder to qualify, and you can’t have received this bonus within the last 24 months.
Realize, too, that the Chase Freedom is part of the unofficial 5/24 rule, which says that if you’ve opened five or more new credit cards in the last 24 months, there’s a good chance you won’t be approved.
2. Rotating bonus categories
One way to earn extra cash back with the Chase Freedom is to max out the rotating bonus categories each quarter. You receive 5% cash back on the first $1,500 in combined spending within the bonus categories.
These bonus categories change every quarter. For example, during the second quarter of 2019, you could earn 5% cash back on purchases made at grocery stores and home improvement stores.
Note that you must activate the bonus rewards categories by the deadline each quarter to take advantage of increased cash back. If you do max out the rewards available, you can expect to earn $75 in cash back each quarter, or $300 per year.
3. 0% introductory APR
One of the best Chase Freedom benefits is the 0% APR on new purchases and balance transfers for 15 months. In fact, the Chase Freedom made our list of top balance transfer credit cards.
If you’ve got a big purchase to make in the near future or perhaps some old credit card debt you want to take care of, paying no interest could be a great way to quickly pay down your obligations.
4. Refer-A-Friend program
Similar to the Chase Freedom Unlimited cash back card, if you want to earn even more cash back, you can take advantage of Chase’s Refer-A-Friend program. You can refer friends using your account info and get $50 for each person that’s approved. You can earn up to $500 in referral rewards per year.
5. Flexible reward redemption options
Chase Freedom rewards don’t just include cash back. When you get this credit card, you’re part of the Ultimate Rewards program. That means you can redeem your rewards for travel, purchases through partner merchants, gift cards, and more.
It’s important to pay attention to the fine print, though. In general, reward points are worth $0.01 a piece, which means it takes 100 points to equal $1 in terms of cash back, gift cards, and travel. However, if you use Chase Pay to buy items from partner merchants, the points are only worth $0.08 apiece — or only 80 cents for every 100 points.
6. Purchase protection
You can request up to $500 per claim in purchase protection for items bought with your Chase Freedom Card. If an item is lost, stolen, or damaged, you have 120 days from the purchase date to file a claim and submit documentation.
However, you need to make sure to follow protocol. For example, to claim the purchase protection for a stolen item, you need to have filed a police report within 48 hours of having the item stolen.
7. Extended warranties
When you buy something with a U.S. manufacturer’s warranty of three years or less, you can automatically extend the warranty by a year on items purchased with your Chase Freedom Card. You can claim up to $10,000 per item.
8. Rental car insurance
You can get free auto rental collision insurance when you use your Chase Freedom Card to pay for a rental. You do have to decline the rental company’s loss damage waiver to make it work, however, and coverage is secondary to your primary car insurance.
9. Trip cancellation insurance
If you paid for your travel arrangements with your Chase Freedom Card and something prevents you from taking that trip, you can be reimbursed for up to $1,500 per traveler for non-refundable costs (with a limit of $6,000 per trip). So if you get sick or severe weather interrupts the trip, you can rest assured knowing you could get some of your money back.
The benefits of the Chase Freedom aren’t just limited to convenience and rewards. You can make the most of your credit card when you understand what’s available. Get to know the perks offered and you might be surprised at how much money you can save, thanks to travel benefits, purchase protection, and more.