Should I get Chase Freedom?

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kdm31091
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Re: Should I get Chase Freedom?

Postby kdm31091 » Sun Jun 14, 2015 9:24 pm

CarefulBuilder14 wrote:
kdm31091 wrote:Exactly -- they definitely need to think carefully. Too many people end up with too much overlap in cards.

Some people don't mind having Discover and Freedom both. It also obviously depends how many cards you're comfortable with. Since I personally like no more than 5 cards, I wouldn't "waste" two slots with very similar cards. But it doesn't cost anything to keep a Freedom open. It's just dubious how much value it will bring to OP at such low spend, and he will likely end up with something like $1.67 in rewards on the Freedom if used occasionally with his low spend. Not really worth it.

What are (or, if not all in place, what would be) your 5 cards?

We seem to agree that it's wasteful to have similar cards. We seem to disagree over how similar Freedom and IT are, though.

**I suppose if you want to get down to 5 cards with travel perks, then maybe there's not room for both.

If I had to pick 5 of my 10...hmm...what would I do?

Definitely drop Sallie Mae, Brooks Bros, and BCE...that would take me down to 7.

I'd want a MasterCard, and the new IHG would kick out Arrival, too.

PRG, EDP, Freedom, It, IHG, and CSP would remain. I'd probably drop PRG or EDP...so all 3 Chase cards would survive, as well as Discover and an Amex.**


If your spend is moderately low (800 a month is what OP said), having even 5 cards could be overkill. No matter what you will end up with tiny rewards on each card and take forever to rack up anything really meaningful.

Travel cards are really only useful for relatively higher spend and/or using it as your only card. If OP had a CSP for example and put all their spend on it, let's say that 800 a month -- even if it was ALL in the 2% category, they'd still only net $16 a month in rewards. x 12 months is $192 a year, minus the fee, so they've netted under 100 bucks in rewards for the year. While that's better than nothing, the point is that they would do best with a no AF cash back card over any kind of travel card.

I don't have any travel cards. I have a Quicksilver for general spend, a barely used BCE for groceries, a BJ's mastercard used fairly heavily (hence the low spend at actual grocery store), and my Discover for rotating categories. More would be overkill for my spend. Everyone's different, though. But as is, it takes a long time to rack up any useful amount of rewards on my BCE, and OP would find themselves in the same boat if they had too many cards


Whatamuji
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Re: Should I get Chase Freedom?

Postby Whatamuji » Sun Jun 14, 2015 10:01 pm

Yeah I'm shying away from the Chase Freedom. Taking a look at the rewards calendar for this year, it really wouldn't be beneficial for me to get the card as I wouldn't be able to use the Grocery category (as I get groceries at Walmart) and I could just use my BoA card at Walmart and get cashback. The Gas and Restaurant categories were covered by my Discover this year and Amazon is covered by my Discover, Amazon Rewards and Amazon Store cards. Of course with the Double Cashback Promo going on right now most of my cards won't be used till the promo is up.

This is how I used my card pre-Double Cashback Promo:
Discover: 5% Calendar
CapOne Quicksilver: Subscriptions
Amazon Rewards: Prime Subscription, small purchases (less than $200)
Amazon Store: Large Purchases ($200+)
BoA Cash Rewards: Gas and Groceries
Kohls: $300, Discover IT: $1.8k, Capital One Quicksilver: $2k, Amazon Store Card: $2.2k, BoA Cash Rewards: 1k, Chase Freedom: 3.2k, AMEX HHonors 3k

kdm31091
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Re: Should I get Chase Freedom?

Postby kdm31091 » Mon Jun 15, 2015 5:41 am

Whatamuji wrote:Yeah I'm shying away from the Chase Freedom. Taking a look at the rewards calendar for this year, it really wouldn't be beneficial for me to get the card as I wouldn't be able to use the Grocery category (as I get groceries at Walmart) and I could just use my BoA card at Walmart and get cashback. The Gas and Restaurant categories were covered by my Discover this year and Amazon is covered by my Discover, Amazon Rewards and Amazon Store cards. Of course with the Double Cashback Promo going on right now most of my cards won't be used till the promo is up.

This is how I used my card pre-Double Cashback Promo:
Discover: 5% Calendar
CapOne Quicksilver: Subscriptions
Amazon Rewards: Prime Subscription, small purchases (less than $200)
Amazon Store: Large Purchases ($200+)
BoA Cash Rewards: Gas and Groceries


I'm glad you are thinking through this sensibly. I'm also glad you post here and not myfico because they would invariably say "just app! just app!"

Secretlurker
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Re: Should I get Chase Freedom?

Postby Secretlurker » Tue Jun 16, 2015 7:13 pm

CarefulBuilder14 wrote:OP's signature lists Chrome, not the regular IT. Chrome is 2% gas and dining, not 5% rotating (before the doubled rewards).

Regarding the regular IT and Freedom, though...

I find them different enough in their 5% categories and online shopping portals to keep both.

Neither has an annual fee, and unless you're heavily into a high-cpp travel rewards program (like United business flights), having a card that you can occasionally use for 5%+ cash is nice.

Were I in the OP's shoes, though, I'd think carefully before applying for my next card. The OP's current cards are all too similar, with too much in the way of overlapping rewards categories.


I like this approach. :)

Kevin86475391
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Re: Should I get Chase Freedom?

Postby Kevin86475391 » Fri Jul 10, 2015 7:35 pm

It definitely depends on your use and preferences of course, but I love having both the Discover It and the Chase Freedom. Both are no annual fee so other than the one-time inquiry pull and keeping an eye on/managing the extra account I don't feel like there's any harm in having both. Sometimes their reward categories coincide but they usually don't seem to. Why not maximize your rewards? Or maybe you don't spend much total, but do spend focused in one or two categories where you really WOULD hit the quarterly cap on a single card. Like for example I'm a really heavy restaurant user and online shopper (but spend virtually nothing on gas, travel, or home improvement). $1,500 spread over 3 months? That's only $500 a month. Absolutely possible, even for a 'low spender.' So even if the categories coincide (like they did with restaurants this year), I'd be glad to have a $3,000 total cap in bonus spending instead of just $1,500 for a heavily used category.

I guess it's a drawback if you're looking to rack up a lot of rewards on a single card and redeem them all at once. Personally I never use my Discover rewards for anything but Amazon shopping whereas I never use my Chase rewards for anything but statement credits. So yeah, even with low spending I'd rather redeem $25.52 with Discover and $25.08 with Chase than a single $50 with one. Okay, in that example I'd only be making an extra $0.60 on the deal, but it wouldn't cost me anything and personally I wouldn't find it any extra hassle.

Another benefit of Chase Freedom is that it's a Visa card. Discover really is widely accepted, but not as widely as Visa. What if you can't use your Discover to pay for your would-be reward category spending at all? It'd be nice to whip out the Chase card and still get the extra rewards vs using a non-rewards or less optimized rewards card.



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