Chase Freedom Unlimited® benefits: How to get more out of your card

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In a Nutshell

The Chase Freedom Unlimited® credit card offers strong cash back rewards at no annual fee, plus a few travel benefits like trip cancellation and trip interruption insurance. Ultimately, though, most of the value you get from the card is likely to come from its bonus rewards categories.
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The Chase Freedom Unlimited® credit card offers strong cash back rewards with no annual fee, plus a suite of benefits you may find useful, including trip cancellation and interruption insurance, which are usually found on credit cards with annual fees. And it provides some bonus rewards categories, too, along with flexible ways to redeem points.



Earn up to 5% cash back on certain purchases

What you get: With the Chase Freedom Unlimited® credit card you can earn 5% cash back on travel booked through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® Portal. Plus, you can get 3% cash back on drugstore and restaurant purchases.

Our take: The points-earning rates in these categories are notable for a credit card with a $0 annual fee — and they come in several common spending categories. Another card might give you more value, depending on your spending, but these categories should provide at least some benefit.

1.5% cash back on all other qualifying purchases

What you get: You’ll earn 1.5% cash back on all eligible purchases outside of the bonus categories.

Our take: The 1.5% cash isn’t the best available, but it’s a strong offer when you consider the bonus categories and other features the card offers.

Redeem points earned for several options

What you’ll get: You can redeem the points you earn with Chase Freedom Unlimited® for cash back with no minimum — either as a statement credit or direct deposit to an eligible bank account. Some of the other redemption options include purchasing gift cards, paying for eligible Amazon orders or booking travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® portal.

Our take: These redemption options generally value your points at a penny each — though Amazon purchases offer a subpar 0.8 cents per point. But depending on how you redeem, some travel options may be worth up to 1.71 cents per point, according to Credit Karma’s point valuations. Learn more about redeeming points in our guide to Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

Points don’t expire

What you’ll get: The points you earn don’t expire as long as you meet specific circumstances. You must keep your account open and in good standing. If your account is closed because of misuse, fraud, failure to pay or bankruptcy, you lose all of the points you’ve accumulated.

Our take: Having rewards that don’t expire gives you one less thing to worry about when managing your card and rewards.

Partner benefits with DoorDash and Lyft

What you’ll get: Currently, Chase offers partner benefits with DoorDash and Lyft through Chase Freedom Unlimited®. If you add your Chase Freedom Unlimited® card as the primary payment on your DoorDash account and activate a DashPass subscription by Dec. 31, 2021, the subscription cost of your first three months with DashPass will be covered. DashPass subscriptions come with reduced delivery and service fees on eligible orders. After the first three months, you’re automatically enrolled for nine more months of DashPass at a 50% discount off the subscription rate.

You can also earn 5% cash back on qualifying Lyft rides through March 2022.

Our take: Partner benefits can be helpful if you’d use these partner services anyway and actively take advantage of the offers. But these benefits can entice you into spending additional money that you hadn’t previously planned to spend.

Trip cancellation and trip interruption insurance

What you’ll get: This card provides up to $1,500 of trip cancellation or interruption coverage per person and up to $6,000 per covered trip. To qualify, you must have purchased prepaid, nonrefundable passenger fares with your card. Additionally, the coverage only kicks in for weather issues, illness and certain other situations the card allows to be covered.

Our take: This type of travel benefit is usually exclusive to credit cards with annual fees, so Chase Freedom Unlimited® stands out from the crowd.

Auto rental collision damage waiver

What you’ll get: Chase Freedom Unlimited® offers auto rental theft and collision damage coverage for most cars when you charge your entire car rental cost to your card and decline the rental company’s collision insurance coverage. This insurance is secondary to your own auto insurance, which means it only pays out after you make a claim on any auto insurance you already have.

Our take: In an ideal world, this coverage would be primary and not require a claim on your own insurance. But the primary coverage benefit is usually reserved for cards with annual fees. Having this benefit as secondary coverage is better than not offering a benefit at all — and it may save you some money.

Extended warranty coverage

What you’ll get: When you buy a qualifying item with your Chase Freedom Unlimited® and that item comes with a manufacturer’s warranty of three years or less, the card may extend the warranty by an extra year.

Our take: This benefit is fairly common on no-annual-fee credit cards, but it’s still nice to have  coverage if a purchase breaks within a year after the manufacturer’s warranty period ends.

Purchase protection

What you’ll get: Purchase protection with the Chase Freedom Unlimited® card may cover qualifying new purchases for 120 days from damage or theft. Coverage limits are up to $500 per claim and up to $50,000 per account.

Our take: This benefit can help if you buy a new qualifying item and accidentally drop and break it. While the coverage limit won’t be high enough to replace expensive items, everyday items that cost under $500 may still qualify.

Earn bonus points with Shop through Chase

What you’ll get: You can earn one to 15 bonus points per $1 spent with participating merchants when you use Shop through Chase. You must visit the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and click through to the store’s website from the portal link for purchases to qualify.

Our take: Other programs exist to give you rebates on your purchases without signing up for a credit card. But Shop through Chase may be a great way to earn extra points for shopping you had planned to do anyway.

Are the benefits of the Chase Freedom Unlimited® worth it?Chase Freedom Unlimited®

Since the Chase Freedom Unlimited® card offers strong cash back rewards on everyday purchases, it may be a good card for you if you’re looking for ways to earn money back simply by making purchases you were already planning to make. Plus, you can opt to redeem points with a range of partners instead of taking the cash, which may give you added flexibility on how you choose to use those points.

Otherwise, though, you might only need the most-valuable benefits in an emergency. Its trip cancellation and interruption insurance coverages aren’t everyday needs, but they might come in handy when your travel doesn’t go as planned.

Not sure if this is the card for you? Read more to find out.


About the author: Lance Cothern is a freelance writer specializing in personal finance. His work has appeared on Business Insider, USA Today.com and his website, Mone… Read more.