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Chase credit cards offer a wide array of personal and business options for consumers and companies alike. Their portfolio also contains a number of cards that are affiliated with leading hotels and airlines that end up being good options for anyone looking to stay loyal with a specific chain. We reviewed the various offerings to determine which are Chase's best credit cards for rewards, interest rates, and signing bonuses.
Chase Credit Cards
- Best Overall: Chase Sapphire Reserve®
- Best for Travel: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
- Best for Cash Back: Chase Freedom® & Chase Freedom Unlimited®
- Best Miles Card:Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card
- Best For Balance Transfers: Chase Slate®
- Chase Business Credit Cards
Note: Most Chase credit cards are intended for people with average to excellent credit - not for those building their credit score. Likewise, there is no best Chase credit card for students, since most with no credit history will have a tough time qualifying.
Best Chase Credit Card Overall: Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Not only is the Chase Sapphire Reserve® one of the best Chase credit cards, but it's also arguably one of the best credit cards, period. Though the $450 annual fee may seem scary at first, the card comes with enough perks to justify that price. First, users get $300 in annual travel credit. Assuming you use all of it, that puts the effective annual fee at just $150. The Chase Sapphire Reserve® also provides users with Priority Pass membership which grants access to hundreds of airport lounges. We value this benefit at $399 per year. You also get special benefits when booking hotels through The Luxury Hotel & Resort Collection and a $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
On top of these luxury travel perks, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® also gives you more reward points than most other Chase credit cards. You get 3 points per dollar on travel and dining worldwide (3 points on travel after you earn the $300 travel credit). Currently, the card also comes with a 50,000-point bonus that you unlock after making $4,000 in purchases using the card within the first 3 months of account opening. These are Chase Ultimate Rewards points that can be transferred to participating airline and hotel programs.
- $300 annual travel credit
- 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
- Points transferrable to participating airline and hotel programs, including Southwest, IHG and Marriott.
- Full Review
Best Travel Credit Card: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is one of the best travel credit cards we've reviewed. This card is good for travelers who aren't interested in the luxury perks provided by the Chase Sapphire Reserve®, or those who feel uncomfortable committing to a $450 credit card. As a general travel credit card, the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is all about flexibility. You can use the points you earn to book travel or transfer them to one of 11 participating airline and hotel programs. Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card cardholders can also take advantage of the card's points transfer program to use accrued rewards points towards loyalty programs with a number of airlines.
New cardholders can look forward to a 50,000 bonus points worth a minimum of $625 when used as statement credit towards travel, if they spend a minimum of $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card rewards are earned at the rate of 2 points for every $1 spent on travel or dining and 1 point for every $1 otherwise. All things considered, the card's rewards can equate to as much as 2.5% on your spending. From its higher than average rewards potential to points flexibility, we name the Sapphire Preferred to be Chase's best credit card for travel rewards.
- Rewards rate between 1.25% and 2.5%
- $0 Introductory Annual Fee the first year, then $95
- 50,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
- Full Review
Best Cash Back Option: Chase Freedom®
The Chase Freedom® gives some of the highest rewards out of all credit cards, on categories that change on a quarterly basis. Cardholders get 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate. All other credit card purchases will earn you 1% in cash back rewards. For example, in Q2 2017 users could get up to 5% back at grocery stores and drug stores. We looked through hundreds of credit cards and few can match these rewards.
The one caveat is that maximizing your rewards rate with the Chase Freedom® requires you to stay on top of which categories are currently eligible for the bonus and using the card accordingly. At least 25% of all your purchases should fall into the 5% categories in order for this card to be effective. Keep in mind, however, that this card also has no annual fee. Therefore, if you sometimes miss the mark and don't use this card effectively, it won't cost you anything.
Another understated feature of the Chase Freedom® is that the cash back is actually accrued as Ultimate Rewards points. This means that the rewards earned with the card can be paired with the benefits of some premium credit cards on the same Ultimate Rewards ecosystem. For example, the rewards can be combined with the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, which we went over above, to get a little extra juice out of your total rewards.
Note: Technically all of the Ultimate Rewards cards offered by Chase are effectively cash back credit cards, since your Ultimate Rewards points can be redeemed for cash back. However, the Chase Freedom® is one of only two that specialize in this category -- the other being the Chase Freedom Unlimited®
- 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate
- $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
- 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers
- Full Review
Best Fixed-Rate Cash Back: Chase Freedom Unlimited®
The Chase Freedom Unlimited® doesn't quite reach the same high cash back rates as Chase Freedom®, though it's good in its own right. The card gives a solid 1.5% cash back on all your purchases, no matter where you use it. There's no rotating categories or limits to worry about. This can be useful for one of two consumers: those for whom the Chase Freedom® categories don't hold any appeal, and those who don't want to have to manage their credit card spending.
Like the Chase Freedom®, the Chase Freedom Unlimited® isn't actually a cash back credit card. It awards Ultimate Rewards (UR) points. That means you can pair it up with another UR card if you want to optimize. Since it has no annual fee, the Chase Freedom Unlimited® makes for an excellent supplementary card. You can keep it in your wallet without having to worry much about whether you're getting enough use out of it.
The current bonus on the Chase Freedom Unlimited® is one of the best, when you compare it against other cards with no annual fee. Users get $150 cash back (or 15,000 Ultimate Rewards points) for spending at least $500 on the card within the first 3 months of card membership.
- 1.5% cash back on all purchases
- Part of the Ultimate Rewards family of cards
- $150 cash back after spending at least $500 on purchases within the first 3 months of card membership
- Full Review
Best For Earning Miles: Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card
The Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card is one of the best airline credit cards around. The chief reason for this designation is that the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card showers you with miles and gives the opportunity to earn high valued travel perks. Users get 2 points per $1 spent on Southwest Airlines® purchases and 1 point per $1 everywhere else. You also get 6,000 points every account anniversary. All these Rapid Rewards points are worth approximately $0.015 each. Therefore, the card's rewards rate varies between 1.5% and 3%, and your annual point bonus is worth about $90 -- thus covering most of the card's annual fee.
The best reason to get the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card is the fact that it can help you earn a Southwest Companion Pass. Those who earn at least 110,000 qualifying Rapid Rewards points within a single year can earn a companion pass that is valid through the remainder of the year in which it's earned, plus the following calendar year. With the pass, you can designate one other person to fly with you for free on Southwest. It essentially becomes an unlimited 'buy one get one free' promotion. This is one of the most coveted frequent flyer benefits, and it has the potential to be worth thousands of dollars, depending on how much you use it.
One important limitation to be aware of is that Southwest is primarily a domestic airline. If you are more interested in Chase credit cards that can earn you miles for international travel, we recommend looking at the United℠ Explorer Card.
- $99 annual fee
- 6,000 anniversary points
- 40,000 points when you make at least $1,000 in purchases in your first 3 months
- Full Review
Best Balance Transfer Card: Chase Slate®
Though you can perform a balance transfer using any Chase credit card, the Chase Slate® is the only one to specialize in it. This is the only Chase credit card to not come with any rewards. Instead, it's mission is simple: to help you pay down your debt. The card comes with 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers. Furthermore, there is a $0 Introductory balance transfer fee for transfers made during the first 60 days of account opening. By contrast, most other credit cards will typically charge you 3% to 5% for each balance transfer, which will eat away into your savings.
Note that in their terms of service, Chase includes the following clause: "We will not process any balance transfer requests that are from any other account or loan that we (Chase Bank USA, N.A.) or any of our affiliates issued." That means you cannot transfer a balance from another Chase credit card to this one. Furthermore, note that you cannot transfer more than $15,000 in credit card balances. If your credit limit is lower, then you cannot transfer more than that limit allows.
- No annual fee
- $0 Introductory balance transfer fee for transfers made during the first 60 days of account opening
- 0% Introductory APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers
- Full Review
Best Chase Business Credit Cards
For small business owners, one of the two Chase business credit cards will likely be of some interest. Both are excellent offers, and have made it to our list of best small business credit cards.
- Best For Businesses With Travel Expenses: Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card
- Best for Traditional Small Businesses: Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card
The Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card is a premium business credit card and part of the Ultimate Rewards family of credit cards. The points you earn through it can be transferred at a 1:1 ratio to one of 11 participating hotel and airline programs, including Southwest, United Airlines and IHG. You can also trade your points in for either cash back or to make travel purchases directly. However, the card is at its best when you are using the points for travel-related purposes.
The Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card awards 3x points on the first $150,000 combined spending on travel, shipping, advertising through search engines and social media sites, and internet/cable/phone services. All other purchases give just 1 point per dollar. Each point carries a $0.0125 value, just like on the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card. That puts its rewards rate at somewhere between 1.25% and 3.75%. Currently, this card also offers one of the best Ultimate Rewards bonuses of any Chase credit card. Cardholders get 80,000 points after they spend at least $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
- $95 annual fee
- 80,000 bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
- 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent in select categories each account anniversary year
- Full Review
Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
The Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card is the better business card for companies that have lower annual expenses and tend to shop with more traditional vendors, like office supply stores. The card has no annual fee, meaning any rewards you earn from it will be a net positive to your bottom line. The card awards 5% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores and on cellular phone, landline, internet and cable services each account anniversary year. Additionally, it also gives 2% cash back on the first $25k spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each year. All other purchases earn just 1% back.
Since this card doesn't charge an annual fee, the Ultimate Rewards points you earn through it are really only usable as cash back. With this card on its own, you cannot transfer the points to any airline or hotel.
- Between 2% and 5% cash back in select categories, up to category limits. Unlimited 1% back on all other purchases
- $500 cash back bonus when you spend at least $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months
- 0% introductory APR for 12 months on purchases and balance transfers
- Full Review
Chase Credit Card Bonuses
For those consumers who may be interested in the short-term rewards potential from Chase, we've highlighted below the bonuses available in the suite of Chase credit cards. Most of the cards require that you spend a minimum amount within the first 3 months to earn the bonus. Depending on your budget, this may impact your ability to earn the required rewards.
|Chase Freedom®||$500 in 3 months||$150|
|Chase Freedom Unlimited®||$500 in 3 months||$150|
|Chase Sapphire Reserve®||$4,000 in 3 months||50,000 points|
|Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card||$4,000 in 3 months||50,000 points|
|United MileagePlus® Club Card||$3,000 in 3 months||50,000 miles|
|United℠ Explorer Card||$2,000 in 3 months||40,000 miles|
|Marriott Rewards® Premier Credit Card||$3,000 in 3 months||80,000 points|
|British Airways Visa Signature® Card||$3,000 in 3 months||50,000 Avios|
|Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card||$1,000 in 3 months||40,000 points|
|Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card||$1,000 in 3 months||40,000 points|
|The Hyatt Credit Card||$2,000 in 3 months||40,000 points|
|Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card||$2,000 in 3 months||70,000 points|
|Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card||Bonus upon approval||$50 Amazon.com gift card|
|AARP® Credit Card||$500 in 3 months||$500|
|Disney Premier Visa® Credit Card||$500 in 3 months||$200 Disney gift card|
|Disney Rewards Visa® Credit Card||First purchase||$50 Disney Gift Card|
|Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card||$3,000 in 3 months||$500|
|Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card||$5,000 in 3 months||80,000 points|
|Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card||$3,000 in 3 months||60,000 points|
|United MileagePlus® Explorer Business card||$3,000 in 3 months||50,000 miles|
|Marriott Rewards® Premier Business credit card||$3,000 in 3 months||80,000 points|