Chase is known for its attractive card offerings — and also for its somewhat stringent credit requirements.
If you want to know whether you’re likely to get a Chase credit card, it can help to prequalify for one first. This can prevent you from an unnecessary hard inquiry on your credit report and give you an idea of whether you have a good chance of getting the card.
Here’s what you need to know if you want to prequalify for a Chase card.
How to prequalify for Chase cards
Prequalification is a process in which a credit card issuer does a soft credit pull to determine whether you might be eligible for certain offers. Often, a prequalification is initiated by the consumer; you contact the credit card issuer and see whether you meet the basic criteria.
To see if you prequalify for a Chase card, you can use their online tool. All you have to do is enter your name, address, and the last four digits of your Social Security number. Chase will perform a soft credit check and let you know if there are any offers you qualify for. You can use this information to decide which Chase credit cards to apply for.
It’s important to note that if you prequalify for a Chase card, there’s no guarantee that you’ll actually be approved for the card. You’ll have to go through the formal application process before you receive a final decision, but at least the prequalification form can give you an idea of whether you could be eligible for a given card.
You might not qualify for any offers, however. But this can be a benefit, since it prevents you from going through the application process, where you’ll face a hard inquiry only to possibly be rejected. If you think you may not qualify based on your credit, you can instead work on improving your credit and make an attempt later.
Getting preapproved may be harder
With a preapproval, on the other hand, the lender may actually make you an offer independently. Again, a preapproval comes with a soft inquiry. But in this case, Chase has likely determined that your credit profile meets the criteria of others who have similar card offers.
Once again, a preapproval isn’t a guarantee that you’ll ultimately get a credit card. However, if the bank has decided that you’re likely to qualify, you may have a better chance of success.
There are two main ways to get preapproved for a Chase credit card:
- Mail: Unfortunately, you have no control over this type of preapproval. Chase sends you an offer in the mail, letting you know that you likely meet the criteria and inviting you to apply. There’s usually an application code you can use to apply on the website.
- Chase branch: If you want to ask about preapproval, you can visit one of Chase’s branches, which are all over the country. Your results may be better if you already have some type of account with Chase. The employee should be able to tell you whether you’ve been preapproved for any offers. You can then apply for the card in the branch.
Realize, though, that your chances of prequalification or preapproval can be marred by what’s known as the Chase 5/24 rule. Under this unofficial rule, if you’ve signed up for five credit card accounts within the last 24 months, you’re unlikely to be approved for a Chase card.
3 Chase cards to consider
If you’re looking for a Chase credit card, there are several to choose from. Here are three of the top contenders.
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
The Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card focuses on earnings with dining and travel. If you like dining and eating out, this card could help you earn enough rewards to offset the $95 annual fee. You earn 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®; 3X points on dining, select streaming services, and eligible online grocery purchases; 2X points on all other travel purchases, and 1X points per $1 on all other eligible purchases.
Plus, you can earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening — worth $750 in travel. Redeem points through Chase Ultimate Rewards for the best value on travel, merchandise, and even cash.
Chase Freedom Flex℠
If you’re looking for a no-annual-fee card that offers cash back, the Chase Freedom Flex credit card could be a solid choice. In addition to offering you 5% cash back on rotating quarterly categories (on up to $1,500 spent) and travel purchased through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal; 3% cash back at restaurants (including takeout and delivery) and drugstores; and 1% cash back on all other purchases; you can also get an introductory 0% APR for 15 months on purchases (then 19.99% to 28.74% (variable)).
There’s also a generous welcome offer with this card. New cardmembers earn a $200 bonus after spending $500 on purchases in the first 3 months.
Chase Freedom Unlimited®
For those who like the idea of cash back but don’t want to keep track of rotating categories, the Chase Freedom Unlimited offers an alternative. There’s a $0 annual fee, and you earn 5% cash back on Chase travel purchased through Ultimate Rewards®, 3% cash back on drugstore purchases and dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery service and unlimited 1.5% cash back on all other purchases.
You can also earn an additional 1.5% cash back on everything you buy (on up to $20,000 spent in the first year) - worth up to $300 cash back. Finally, you'll also get a 0% intro APR on purchases for 15 months (then 19.74% - 28.49% Variable).
Chase offers some of the best credit cards around, and it’s no surprise that so many people want a Chase prequalification offer. Because so many of the cards require good-to-excellent credit and are subject to the 5/24 rule, it can make a lot of sense to go through the prequalification process before you commit to a formal application.
Great for Flexible Travel Rewards
Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
5X points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®; 3X points on dining, select streaming services, and eligible online grocery purchases; 2X points on all other travel purchases, and 1X points per $1 on all other eligible purchases