freedom flex vs. freedom unlimited

Ever since Chase announced the launch of the new Chase Freedom Flex credit card, which essentially replaced the soon-to-be legacy Chase Freedom card, I’ve spent quite a bit of time comparing and contrasting those two cards and what the differences are.

Here’s my in-depth comparison of the Chase Freedom Flex and the Chase Freedom.

If you missed it, Chase also completely refreshed the Chase Freedom Unlimited, which means that many of you are still a bit confused on the differences between the brand new Chase Freedom Flex and the newly refreshed Chase Freedom Unlimited.

Here’s a chart comparing the Freedom Flex and the Freedom Unlimited

I’ve bolded the rows where the cards differ.

Chase Freedom FlexChase Freedom Unlimited
freedom flexchase freedom unlimited
Bonus Offer$200 (20,000 Ultimate Rewards points) when you spend $500 in your first 3 monthsAn extra 1.5 points per dollar spent, up to 30,000 total points, in your first year.
Card NetworkMastercardVisa
Earn rate on general spend1X1.5X
Earn rate on rotating quarterly bonus categories (limit $1,500 per quarter on spend)5XNot a feature of this card
Earn rate on on travel when purchased through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal5X5X
Earn rate on dining including takeout3X3X
Earn rate at drugstores3X3X
Earn rate on Lyft rides (through March 2025)5X5X
Mastercard World Elite benefits ($10 credit per 5 Lyft rides, 5% in Boxed credits, Free Shoprunner)YesNo
Foreign Transaction Fees Charged?YesYes
Can points be transferred to a Sapphire card for transfer to travel partners?YesYes
Cell Phone Protection Benefit: up to $800 per claim and $1,000 per year (see full details)Yes! No

As you can see, the differences between these two cards are fairly small yet really important to understand, especially if you don’t have either and only want to (or only can, thanks to 5/24) one or the other.

Here are the key differences between the Freedom Flex and the Freedom Unlimited

How to Decide Between the Freedom Flex and the Freedom Unlimited?

First off, you can have both! If you already have one you can apply for the other. So if you already have a Freedom Unlimited, you can grab a Freedom Flex, get the bonus offer – $200 (20,000 Ultimate Rewards) after spending $500 in 3 months and then you can use the Freedom Flex for the rotating quarterly bonus categories and the Unlimited for 1.5X on non-bonused spend.

But what if you already have another card that earns more than 1.5% / 1.5X on non-bonused spend (and by the way, I list the best credit cards for spend without a bonus category here). I’m partial to a Citi Double Cash which earns 2% cash back on everything and can be converted into Citi Thank You points if you also have a Citi Premier or Prestige card or an Amex Blue Business Plus card, which earns 2X Membership Rewards on everything up to $50k a year.

If you already beat 1.5X on non-bonused spend, you probably only need a Freedom Flex so you can get the 5X rotating categories. Or, you might opt for a Freedom Flex because you want the World Elite benefits like the free cell phone protection benefit (which is really a great benefit in a no-fee card!!).

But if you don’t already have a great card for non-bonused spend, and you want to focus on earning Chase points, then the Freedom Unlimited may be the better first option.

Conversion Considerations:

If you currently have a Chase Freedom card, it won’t automatically convert into a Freedom Flex but you can call Chase at the number on the back of your card and ask for them to convert it for you.

You can have only one Chase Freedom Flex card and you can only convert to it from an existing Chase Freedom. Therefore, if you don’t have an existing Freedom card, you’ll need to apply outright for the Chase Freedom Flex if you want one.

Meanwhile, you can convert an existing Chase Sapphire Preferred, Chase Sapphire Reserve, or Chase Freedom card to a Freedom Unlimited.

If you currently have a Chase Freedom and also max out the $1,500 on the quarterly bonus categories, you may still want to apply for a new Freedom Flex so that you can have double the quarterly 5X limit ($1,500 per card). The rotating categories are the same.

Related: Chase Freedom Flex vs. Chase Freedom – All of Your Questions Answered

See how to apply for a Chase Freedom Flex or a Chase Freedom Unlimited.


Any other questions?

Let me know below in the comments, on Twitter, or in the private MilesTalk Facebook group.

And if this post helped you, please consider sharing it!

You can find credit cards that best match your spending habits and bonus categories at Your Best Credit Cards

New to all of this? My “introduction to miles and points” book, MilesTalk: Live Your Wildest Travel Dreams Using Miles and Points is available on Amazon and at major booksellers.


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