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Link: Chase Freedom®
Since late May, Chase has increased the sign-up bonus on the no annual fee Chase Freedom®. This is one of my favorite no annual fee credit cards, and I’ve just received official word that the increased sign-up bonus will expire on June 30, 2014, which is less than a week from today.
The sign-up bonus is marketed as follows:
- For a limited time, earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
- Earn a $25 Bonus after you add your first authorized user and make a purchase within this same 3-month period
Why should you consider a Chase Freedom Card?
No annual fee
At the end of the day you can’t beat a credit card with no annual fee!
5x points in select rotating quarterly categories
The Chase Freedom offers 5% cash back (five points) per dollar spent on rotating quarterly categories, which can translate into a huge return. When you register your card each quarter you then earn 5x points for the first $1,500 spent in those category.
Having no annual fee card can be great for your credit score
As if the huge rotating quarterly categories weren’t enough, keep in mind that one part of your credit score is the average age of your accounts.
It’s good to keep some cards long term just to help increase the average age of your accounts, even if the card itself isn’t that rewarding. That’s why I go out of my way to keep several cards long term, since it drives up my credit score.
In this case you’re getting a rewarding credit card which you can also keep open long term to help build your credit score. That’s a win-win.
Ability to convert points into Ultimate Rewards
You probably noticed above that Chase markets the rewards earned on this card as cash back. In reality, you earn points on the Chase Freedom®, and each point can be redeemed for one cent cash back. In other words, the sign up bonus offers 20,000 points after making $500 of purchases in the first three months, and an additional 2,500 points after adding an authorized user and having them make a purchase within three months, for a total of 22,500 points.
However, if you have this card in addition to one of the cards that accrue “premium” Ultimate Rewards points, you can transfer these points to Ultimate Rewards. Cards that accrue “premium” Ultimate Rewards Cards include the:
So you can convert your points from a no annual fee credit card into “premium” Ultimate Rewards points in conjunction with the right cards.
This is the best sign-up bonus we’ve seen on the card in a long time
Back in the day this card regularly had 20,000+ point sign-up bonuses. But over the past couple of years the standard sign-up bonus has been $100 cash back/10,000 points. We’ve occasionally seen increased sign-up bonuses of $200 cash back/20,000 points. But with this bonus you can earn $225 cash back/22,500 points, which is the best I’ve seen in a long time
Chase Freedom is now a Visa Signature Card
This is fairly new. As of a couple of months ago, the Chase Freedom Card is actually a Visa Signature Card, assuming you have a credit line of at least $5,000. While that’s not life changing, Visa Signature cards do come with some additional perks that are worth keeping in mind.
If you don’t yet have the Chase Freedom, I suspect this is as good as the bonus will get. I picked up the card late last year after waiting way too long, and am really happy to have it. Between the bonus points I earn from it, ability to combine those points with Ultimate Rewards, and that it helps my credit score long term, it’s a card I’ll keep in my wallet for years to come.
Link: Chase Freedom®