Chase credit cards: Which one should you choose?


Editor’s note: Before you make any decisions regarding credit cards, please make sure you understand money expert Clark Howard’s philosophy regarding them!

Chase is one of the largest and most well-known credit card issuers in the United States. Many of their credit cards have been named as the best credit card for their respective card categories (like Introductory or Rewards rates).

When it comes to choosing the best Chase credit cards for you, there is no one-size-fits-all card out there. Everyone has different needs and purchasing habits and credit scores will greatly impact the credit card they can get approved for. However, there are some important features to look for in a credit card, like:

  • 0% or low introductory interest rate
  • Low ongoing interest rate
  • Rewards rate
  • Minimal fees (such as the annual fees)

RELATED: What is a ”˜good’ credit card?

Chase Ultimate Rewards program

Chase is well-known for their Ultimate Rewards program that comes with some of their rewards cards: Chase Sapphire Reserve, Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, Chase Freedom Flex, Chase Freedom Unlimited, Ink Business Preferred Credit Card, and Ink Business Cash Credit Card. There are two ways you can transfer Ultimate Rewards points:

  1. Transfer between two accounts where you are the primary account holder
  2. Transfer between accounts where you are the primary cardholder on one, and someone else is the primary cardholder of the other account

Some Chase credit cards are cashback cards, but they are still part of the Chase Ultimate Rewards® program. These include the Chase Freedom Flex, Chase Freedom Unlimited and Ink Business Cash Credit Card. Cardholders should consider converting their cash-back points to Ultimate Rewards points if you want to get more value out of your points (when redeemed directly for travel or transferred to certain partners), to reach a certain redemption threshold, or if you intend to cancel a card and want to keep your points.

If you’re in the market for a new credit card and considering Chase, here are some of our favorite cards based on the above features for consideration. For the purpose of this article, we are only focusing on consumer credit cards and not business credit cards.

RELATED: How to improve your credit score 100 points in 30 days

Best Chase credit cards

For foodies & frequent travelers: Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

Like many of the cards listed below, this credit card has remained one of the top rewards credit cards in the market since it was first introduced. It’s a great credit card for foodies and frequent travelers who also have excellent credit. It does not offer any introductory rates, so the value is in the sign-up bonus, rewards rate and rewards flexibility.


New cardholders can earn 60,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening. The introductory bonus points alone can be valued at $600, or you can get 25% more value for airfare, car rentals and cruises, when redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards®! From there, cardholders can earn a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, along with 3X points on dining and 2X points on all other travel purchases. The annual fee is $95.

The Chase Sapphire Reserve is similar to the Sapphire Preferred, except it offers 3X points on travel and dining purchases and 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchase. It also comes with a higher annual fee of $550.

For people who like cash back: Chase Freedom Flex

What’s not to love about the Chase Freedom Flex? Any time I see someone pull this card out of their wallet, I know they’re savvy with credit card rewards. Chase Freedom Flex is perfect for cardholders that would like to earn bonus points on purchases in popular rotating categories such as gas, groceries and restaurant purchases.

The Chase Freedom Flex credit card offers 0% Intro APR on purchases for the first 15 months of card membership. New cardholders can earn $200 Bonus after spending $500 on purchases within the first three months of account opening and can earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in rotating quarterly categories. There also are permanent bonus spending categories in dining (3%), drug store purchases (3%) and travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards (5%). All other purchases will earn a flat 1% cash back.

If you aren’t a big fan of rotating categories, checkout the Chase Freedom Unlimited card that offers most of the same rates explained above, except cardholders earn an unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases. Both Freedom credit cards come with no annual fee.

RELATED: Rewards credit cards: The pros and cons

For people looking to transfer balances: Chase Slate

This is another great credit card that literally no other card on the market can compare to. Chase Slate is perfect for cardholders that are simply looking to transfer a balance that’s tied to interest, or for those interested in making a large purchase they can pay off before the introductory rate expires.

Chase Slate boasts an introductory offer of 0% APR for the first 15 months of account opening on both purchases and balance transfers. After that, the ongoing APR is variable. What makes Slate so different is they also don’t charge a fee for the balance transfer if completed within the first 60 days of account opening. Literally, no other card is available that offers these terms, which is why it’s considered the best balance transfer card available today.


Bottom line

Opening a new credit card with Chase or any other major card issuer can be a great way to protect the financial information of your personal bank account in the event of fraud or theft, and to earn rewards on purchases you already make. If you intend to carry a balance on your new credit card, forget everything about why you should have one of the best Chase credit cards. For you, it would be best to focus on paying down debt and learning to become a financially responsible cardholder.

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