2023’s Best Chase Credit Cards: Overview and Comparison

There’s a wide variety of Chase credit cards, mostly designed for people with great credit history and credit scores.

Chase also offers several business credit cards for small business owners under the Chase Ink Business brand.

Best for: Travel Rewards

Chase cards don’t have foreign transaction fees, which most people expect on travel credit cards that have an annual fee. They’re part of the Chase Ultimate Rewards program. 

Ultimate Rewards points are most valuable when you redeem for travel purchases through the Ultimate Rewards portal or a point transfer to a partner travel program, like a hotel loyalty program.

Each card offers an opportunity to earn bonus points for spending a certain amount within the first few months of account opening. Chase credit cards even offer primary car rental insurance, a valuable perk that could help keep your insurance payments low.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is a good (and popular) general-use travel card. It features extra points on travel and dining and offers a 1:1 transfer rate to several popular travel partners. Regular travelers who make good use of the card should find the annual fee quite reasonable.

This popular metal travel card earns 3X Ultimate Rewards points per dollar spent on restaurants and 2X on travel purchases. You’ll also get a few solid benefits, primarily travel and shopping protections.

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

The Chase Sapphire Reserve has a top-tier annual fee, but don’t shy away. It provides some top-tier travel rewards and benefits. It offers a $300 travel credit, earns extra points on travel and dining and has excellent point transfer and redemption opportunities.

It is one of the best Chase credit cards, offering cardholders perks like an annual travel credit, a fee credit towards a Global Entry or TSA Pre✓ application and many other benefits. Cardmembers will also enjoy a complimentary Priority Pass Select membership.

Best for: Cash Back Rewards

Chase offers two rewards credit cards that earn cash back with no annual fee. Each of these Chase cards also comes with an intro APR for the first year, which can be used for balance transfers or to pay off purchases over time. After that you’ll get a regular variable APR.

Chase Freedom Flex℠

The Chase Freedom Flex card replaced the Chase Freedom card, offering more robust rewards and using the Mastercard network as opposed to Visa. You’ll enjoy the same rotating rewards, additional cash back on travel and dining and new Mastercard World Elite benefits.

The card offers 5% back for eligible card purchases on bonus categories that rotate every quarter. Recent bonus categories have included grocery stores, gas stations, department stores and wholesale clubs.

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

The Chase Freedom Unlimited is an excellent rewards card with no annual fee.

The card earns you 5% cash back on Lyft rides and travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards. You’ll get 3% cash back at restaurants and drugstores and 1.5% back for all other purchases.

Best for: Students

Chase only has one student card. It’s pretty simple but not a bad offering overall, with some cash back rewards and the opportunity to easily increase your credit limit.

Chase Freedom® Student credit card

A simple but decent card for students, the Chase Freedom Student only offers 1% cash back (except for 5% for Lyft rides). But it also comes with a $20 anniversary bonus for up to five years – that’s rare for a card with no annual fee. Plus, it offers a three-month DoorDash membership.

Best for: Co-Branded Hotel & Airline Cards

Chase offers several airline and hotel rewards cards with partner brands to help cardmembers earn travel rewards on purchases like airfare and hotel stays.

British Airways Visa Signature® Card

The British Airways Visa Signature card could be ideal for British Airways frequent flyers, offering 3X Avios per dollar after the first year on all purchases with British Airways, Aer Lingus International Airlines and Iberia Airlines. It also provides some nice travel benefits and no foreign transaction fees.

Aer Lingus Visa Signature® Card

This travel Visa card offers rewards and perks to make your trips more comfortable when you fly Aer Lingus, Iberia and British Airways. You’ll also earn Avios for spending on hotel accommodations, along with priority boarding for you and authorized users on eligible flights.

Iberia Visa Signature® Card

This Visa card is designed for the avid traveler who frequently flies Iberia, British Airways, or Aer Lingus. You’ll be rewarded for spending at least $30,000 with the card in a year. It comes with an annual fee of $95.

The World of Hyatt Credit Card

The World of Hyatt Visa card is ideal for those who frequent Hyatt locations, as it offers automatic enrollment into the Discoverist member status. Along with earning a generous number of points at Hyatt properties, you can also take advantage of one free night offered yearly at a Hyatt hotel or resort.

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card

This Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® card certainly strives for the boundless, featuring a generous 6X points at Marriott Bonvoy hotels along with the 11X points you’ll get for Silver Elite status. It comes with a plethora of benefits for staying at Marriott Bonvoy properties, for a price of $95 per year.

Marriott Bonvoy Bold® Credit Card

This no-annual-fee Visa card could be a good pick for travelers who occasionally stay with Marriott Bonvoy. With no yearly fee it won’t be a big deal if you don’t happen to use it a lot. You’ll get 15 Elite Night credits per year – enough for Silver Elite status, which means a point bonus and other hotel perks, plus some useful travel benefits.

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card

This Southwest Airlines Visa card might be good for people who prefer to fly Southwest, providing some helpful perks and points back on all Southwest Airlines flights, hotels and car rental partners. The annual fee might seem high, but frequent travelers can easily offset it with the annual travel credit, bonus points and upgraded boardings.

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card

The contactless Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Visa card is best suited for Southwest Airlines enthusiasts, earning points back on Southwest flights and at hotel and car rental partners. But with an annual fee of $99 and no enticing airline benefits, it doesn’t quite stack up to other cards in its pricing tier.

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card

Priced annually at $69, the Rapid Rewards Plus Visa card will earn you more miles on Southwest Airlines flights. This is the least expensive Rapid Rewards consumer card offered by Southwest, but it also has the least impressive perks and benefits package.

United℠ Explorer Card

As the name suggests, this United Visa Card caters to the explorers who prefer flying United, offering good opportunities to earn extra miles and featuring several useful airline perks. There is no annual fee for the first year, and depending on how you redeem your miles, the card could provide the equivalent of up to 14% cash back on United flights.

What Are the Best Chase Credit Cards?

That depends – how do you spend your money and what are you looking for in a credit card? 

If you’d like to earn travel rewards, try the Chase Sapphire cards. The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card delivers strong rewards and point transfer opportunities for a reasonable annual fee, while the Chase Sapphire Reserve® adds a premium tilt with better rewards and top-tier benefits at a higher price tag.

If you’re not huge on travel, the Chase Freedom Flex℠ and Chase Freedom Unlimited® are worth a look. They’re both strong cash back credit cards with no annual fee, but the Flex focuses on quarterly rotating categories, while the Unlimited offers a few permanent categories and 1.5% cash back on everything else.

Last, but certainly not least, Chase issues lots of co-branded airline and hotel cards. If you’re a frequent traveler who doesn’t mind brand loyalty, they might be worth a look – particularly top picks like the United℠ Explorer Card and the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card.

What Benefits Do Chase Credit Cards Provide?

Chase offers a set of features that come standard with their credit cards, including:

  • Chase credit journey: Chase offers free credit scores to help you keep tabs on your credit. View your VantageScore 3.0, based on your TransUnion credit report and see data from that report.
  • Referral bonuses: Some cards offer bonus rewards for referring friends who successfully apply for Chase cards.
  • Zero liability protection: You won’t be held responsible for unauthorized charges.
  • Fraud alerts: Sign up to get notified of any possibly fraudulent card activity.
  • Fraud protection: Real-time fraud monitoring software to help protect your account.

What Credit Scores Do You Need to Get a Chase Credit Card?

The Chase Sapphire Reserve® targets individuals with excellent credit. FICO scores above 740 or so should do the trick.

But most Chase credit cards are intended for those with good credit scores. That means you’ll need a FICO score of at least 670. But even that’s not always the case.

The Chase Freedom® Student credit card is an exception. Like most student-focused credit cards, it’s tailored for those with limited or no credit.

Keep in mind that your credit alone may not be enough for approval. You’ll generally also need a solid income and have a low enough debt load that the issuer is assured you’ll be able to make payments.

Are There Chase Credit Cards With No Foreign Transaction Fees?

Yes! But – no surprise – most are designed for frequent travelers.

Options include:

  • Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve®
  • British Airways Visa Signature® Card
  • Aer Lingus Visa Signature® Card
  • Iberia Visa Signature® Card
  • The World of Hyatt Credit Card
  • Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card
  • Marriott Bonvoy Bold® Credit Card
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card
  • United℠ Explorer Card
  • United Club℠ Infinite Card

What’s the Chase 5/24 Rule?

It’s a largely unspoken and unconfirmed rule that may apply to the Chase card application process.

What is it? Simply stated: If you’ve opened five or more credit cards in the past 24 months that appear on your personal credit reports, Chase will deny your application. 

The rule is most likely an attempt to reduce Chase’s risk in lending and to hold back the abuse of people just signing up for bonuses.

But, you can also find reports that it isn’t consistently applied. So, if you really want a Chase card but you’ve already opened five accounts in the last two years, you could still give the application a shot (you may need to call the reconsideration line after applying). 

Just make sure you’re using your credit cards responsibly to help build confidence that you’re a good credit risk.

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