Normally, Chase’s Freedom Unlimited offers 1.5% back on all purchases. While that may not sound that great on the surface, seeing as there are plenty of 2% back cards. However, if you have a Ultimate Reward earning card, you can convert that cash back into points by transferring them over to that card. The points are then much more valuable.
Last year for about 1 month, Chase offered an amazing sign up bonus on the card. While the traditional sign up bonus on the card is getting back $150 for spending $500 in the first 3 months, Chase offered the ability to earn 3% back for the instant year on all purchases, and then the rate would drop back to the normal 1.5% afterwards. I think this was a really popular promotion for Chase, as they quickly retracted it. However, it looks like you may get another chance at something similar, as a modified version of this is now publicly available.
We saw a little bit of a teaser of this offer, as it was available to those that would either apply directly in a Chase branch, or through the use of a referral. Now though, it is publicly available online!
The offer is 3% cash back for the first year on all purchases. The key difference however is now there is a limit of $20,000. If you pass that $20,000 threshold, or if you go through a year, you will revert back to the normal 1.5%.
At face value, spending $20,000 at 3% would net you $600. If we consider that the original bonus is $150, then we are getting an additional $450 for spending another $19,500. When you look at it from a cash back point of view, it may not seem like the best offer.
However, if we were have a card that earns Ultimate Reward points, then the sign up bonus is a much better offer. That $600 would convert over to 60,000 Ultimate Reward points. If you value the points at 2 cents per point, that would be over $1200 from the sign up bonus. This is a much better way to look at this offer.
Even if there’s a limit of $20,000 spend, I think it could be a very worthwhile proposition. When it comes down to it, you have the potential to earn much more by this offer than you would normally. If you don’t have the card already, and think you can spend $20,000 on it within the first year, then I think this is a great offer to jump on. If you are at a stage in your credit journey where you are obtaining cards every few months, it may be more difficult to max out the spend.
The thing to keep in mind with this card, is that is a catch-all card. It’s great for picking up extra points where you normally wouldn’t earn more than 1%. If you jump on this offer, and think you would be earning substantially more by using a different card for a certain purchase, it may be worth using the other card. Also something else to consider, if you use this offer for travel, keep in mind the protections are not quite the same as a premium travel card, such as the Sapphire Reserve.
If I were looking at the Freedom Unlimited, I think this would be a great time to apply! Either to finish off, or start building the Chase Trifecta.
What do you think about this offer? Is it worth it for you? Is it feasible to spend $20,000 in a year? Let us know below!