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Earlier I wrote about some huge changes potentially coming to the Chase Freedom. This is Chase’s no annual fee credit card which presently offers 5% cash back in rotating quarterly categories, and 1% cash back on all other purchases.
The best part is that in conjunction with the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card or Ink Plus® Business Credit Card you can convert those points into Ultimate Rewards points, meaning you’re really earning 5x Ultimate Rewards points in select rotating quarterly categories. That’s a fantastic return, and makes the card one I use in conjunction with my cards accruing Ultimate Rewards points to maximize points.
Earlier I wrote about the speculation of the Chase Freedom switching to earning just 1.5% cash back with no category bonuses, rather than 1% cash back on all purchases and then 5% cash back in select rotating categories. These changes are supposed to kick in starting in March, though this is based on unofficial reports. The name of the new product is supposed to be Chase Freedom Unlimited.
I called these changes negative, as I was thinking about the card in the context of what I use it for, which is the 5x points bonus categories.
But as readers pointed out, I wasn’t analyzing this completely. These changes could actually be very positive.
If the Chase Freedom offers 1.5% cash back and those points can continue to be converted into Ultimate Rewards points, that means we have a new card which indirectly offers 1.5 Ultimate Rewards points per dollar spent.
Redeem Chase Ultimate Rewards points for Korean Air first class
When I first thought of that I figured it was too good to be true, that the Chase Freedom would basically offer a better return than the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card.
But it actually makes perfect sense when you view it competitively. American Express has the Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card, which offers a 50% points bonus when you make at least 30 transactions per billing cycle, meaning you’re essentially earning 1.5 Membership Rewards points per dollar spent.
This could simply be a competitor to that, and arguably better, if it doesn’t have an annual fee and doesn’t have a minimum number of purchases every billing cycle.
This is all speculation at this point, but I figured it was worth writing a follow-up post, since I really didn’t analyze the situation properly earlier (it’s early on a Sunday morning, so cut me some slack). 😉
These changes could be positive or negative, and that’s largely reliant upon whether the cash back earned on the Chase Freedom can continue to be converted into Ultimate Rewards points at a 1:1 ratio.
Would you view these potential changes to the Chase Freedom (losing the 5% cash back category but adding 1.5% cash back on everyday purchases) as a net positive?
Non-Affiliate Product Disclaimer: The information for the AmEx Everyday Preferred has been collected independently by One Mile At A Time. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.