Chase’s New ‘Freedom Flex’ Card Flexes Its Muscles

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Chase has a brand new card, the Chase Freedom FlexSM, and it earns 5% cash back on up to $1500 in eligible combined purchases in rotating categories, 5% on travel purchased through Chase, 3% on dining at restaurants and drugstores, and 1% on all other purchases.

There’s an initial offer to earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. And earn 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target® or Walmart® purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.

There are two things notable up front about this card,

  1. While these points do not transfer directly to airline or hotel programs, you can combine them into a Sapphire Preferred or Sapphire Reserve account, and from there to participating airline or hotel loyalty programs. I love earning 5 points per dollar spent in several categories that I’m able to move to United, Singapore, or Hyatt along with other Chase partners.

  2. It’s a Mastercard. Chase has a really lucrative deal with Visa, and almost exclusively issues Visa products. The only other Mastercard from Chase I’m aware of is the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card. As a Mastercard it offers some benefits that are unique among Chase cards.

While many issuers have been removing secondary benefits from cards, this new Chase Freedom FlexSM comes with (secondary) rental car collision and trip cancellation.

It has extended Warranty coverage, extending the time period of a U.S. manufacturer’s warranty by an additional year, on eligible purchases that come with warranties of three years or less. There’s also damage and theft Protection, and cell phone protection of up to $800 per claim and $1000 and two claims per year with a $50 deductible (when you pay your monthly bill with the card). There are also Lyft, Boxed, Shoprunner and Fandango benefits from this Mastercard.

This card pairs nicely with a Chase Sapphire Reserve® or Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card because you can take 5 points per dollar earning on eligible spend, move those points over to the Sapphire Reserve or Preferred account, and the points become more valuable because they transfer to airline miles or hotel points (or you can use them towards the Sapphire Reserve/Preferred’s ‘Pay Yourself Back’ feature for statement credits against eligible spend). Of course Chase’s 5/24 applies, you can only get approved if you’ve had fewer than 5 new cards in the last 24 months.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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Editorial note: any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer. Comments made in response to this post are not provided or commissioned nor have they been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any bank. It is not the responsibility of advertisers Citibank, Chase, American Express, Barclays, Capital One or any other advertiser to ensure that questions are answered, either. Terms and limitations apply to all offers.

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Comments

  1. Are they going to be the same categories at the same time as the base Chase Freedom?

    I have CF, CFU, and CSR. The only benefit I could see is to bag the initial bonus and the 5% on groceries for the first year ($600 if you max it out). Does anyone else see an angle for holding this card long term given you already have the Chase Trifecta?

  2. Chase is cannibalizing their own products w/o much value to the customer other than a small signup bonus.
    They are currently offering higher than normal earnings on their Freedom Unlimited card for travel and dining and they just announced an almost meaningless 5% fourth quarter partnership for their Freedom card (Wally and PP).
    Sounds like they are bored and the marketing gurus are rearranging furniture to look busy. The only advantage I see is it could block competition from other card issuers with great deals that might be coming down the line. I’m not going to waste one of my bullets (5/24) on this one.

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