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VS

Compare the Features and Benefits of Chase Freedom Unlimited® and
The Platinum Card® from American Express

Detailed Comparison Overview

Key Facts
Annual Fee
Avg. Min. Credit Score
APR on purchases
APR on balance transfers
Ongoing APR
Balance transfers fees
Best Multiplier
Avg. Point Value
(Learn More)
Bonus Offer
Rating
Review
Key features
Unique Card Benefits
Secondary Car Rental CDW Waiver
Purchase Protection
Extended Warranty
Trip Protections
0% Intro APR on Purchases
0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers
Free Access to Credit Score
Airport Lounge Access
Annual Statement Credits
Grants Hotel Status
Grants Car Rental Status
Earns Transferable Points
Global Entry / TSA PreCheck Reimbursement
Return Protection
Cell Phone Protection
Has No Preset Spending Limit
Concierge Services
Metal Card
Annual Fee
$0
Avg. Min. Credit Score
670-850 *
APR on purchases
0% Intro APR (on purchases for 15 months, 20.49%-29.24% thereafter)
APR on balance transfers
0% Intro APR (on balance transfers for 15 months, 20.49%-29.24% thereafter)
Ongoing APR
20.49%-29.24% (Variable)
Balance transfers fees
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Best Multiplier
5x Airfare

Earn this multiplier when you purchase via Chase Travel. If you purchase any other way, you will earn 1.5X points.

5x Car Rentals

Earn this multiplier when you purchase via Chase Travel. If you purchase any other way, you will earn 1.5X points.

5x Hotels

Earn this multiplier when you purchase via Chase Travel. If you purchase any other way, you will earn 1.5X points.

5x Lyft
3x Dining Out / Food Delivery
3x Drugstores
1.5x Everything Else
Avg. Point Value
(Learn More)
$0.01 - $0.0175
Bonus Offer
INTRO OFFER: Earn an additional 1.5% cash back on everything you buy (on up to $20,000 spent in the first year) - worth up to $300 cash back!
Rating
YBCC Card Rate Stars Filled
YBCC Card Rate Stars Empty
(4.25) Our Review

Our ratings are determined by the authors and editors on our team. Each individual card feature is compared against all other cards we offer and the total score is an average of those 4 ratings.

Review

This is a staple card in the Chase Trifecta, which includes a Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Sapphire Reserve, a Chase Freedom Flex, and this card, the Chase Freedom Unlimited.

The primary benefit of this card, from a bonus category perspective, is the ability to earn 1.5% on all purchases that don’t have a bonus category. So while you earn 3% on dining and drugstore purchases with the Freedom Unlimited, you’ll earn 1.5% cash back on anything else, like insurance or utilities.

drugstores-chase-freedom-unlimited

But since the Chase Freedom Unlimited is a pure cash back credit card unless you also have a Chase Sapphire Preferred®, Sapphire Reserve®, or Ink Business Preferred® with which to combine your Chase Ultimate Rewards points, it’s ideally used as a combo.

When you hold one of these premium Ultimate Rewards-earning credit cards, you can transfer points earned on the Freedom Unlimited to the premium card. Once you’ve moved the Ultimate Rewards over to the premium credit card, you can take advantage of points transfers to 12 Chase airline and hotel partners or book travel through the travel portal.

If you book through Chase Travel℠ and have a Sapphire Reserve, your points redeem for 1.5 cents each, meaning that you earn 1.5X points or cash back per dollar and redeem them for 1.5X, giving you an effective 2.25% return on your spend.

If you book through Chase Travel and have a Sapphire Preferred, or Ink Business Preferred, your points redeem for 1.25 cents each, meaning that you earn 1.5X per dollar and redeem for 1.5X, giving you an effective 1.875% return on your spend.

But our absolute favorite way to redeem is always via airline and hotel transfer partners. The easiest high-value redemption is usually Hyatt. We often get better than 2 cents per World of Hyatt point. Keep in mind that Hyatt doesn’t charge any resort fees when you stay on a free night award. So let’s say you are looking at a hotel with a cash price of $259 and a $25 a night resort fee and 8% tax. That would come to $307 a night. But if that same room costs 8,000 or 12,000 Hyatt points, you could be using your points (which transfer at an even 1:1 ratio to all airline and hotel partners) with a rate of return of 3 – 4 cents.

That said, even without a card combo, it’s still a solid card to earn 1.5% cash back (plus 3% on dining, including takeout and eligible delivery services, and drugstores) since it has no annual fee. Best of all, you can accrue cash back on this card and decide to add a Chase Sapphire Preferred®, Sapphire Reserve®, or Ink Business Preferred® later on – if you suddenly decide that you’d like to delve into the world of credit card rewards that transfer to frequent flyer and hotel programs to book free award flights and hotel nights.

It comes with a solid range of benefits for a card with no annual fee, too. You’ll get Purchase Protection and Extended Warranty on the shopping side and you’ll be taken care of on canceled or shortened pre-paid trips if a covered reason arises. with the included Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance.

Read more
Unique Card Benefits
yes
Secondary Car Rental CDW Waiver
yes
Purchase Protection
yes
Extended Warranty
yes
Trip Protections
yes
0% Intro APR on Purchases
yes
0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers
yes
Free Access to Credit Score
yes
Airport Lounge Access
no
Annual Statement Credits
no
Grants Hotel Status
no
Grants Car Rental Status
no
Earns Transferable Points
no
Global Entry / TSA PreCheck Reimbursement
no
Return Protection
no
Cell Phone Protection
no
Has No Preset Spending Limit
no
Concierge Services
no
Metal Card
no
Annual Fee
$695 (Rates and fees)
Avg. Min. Credit Score
670-850 *
APR on purchases
-
APR on balance transfers
-
Ongoing APR
See Pay Over Time APR
Balance transfers fees
-
Best Multiplier
5x Airfare

Earn 5x Membership Rewards points on airfare (booked directly with the airline or via AmexTravel.com and on prepaid hotels when booked via AmexTravel.com), up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year.

5x Hotels

Only when booked via AmexTravel.com; Otherwise, hotels will earn 1X points per dollar spent

1x Everything Else
Avg. Point Value
(Learn More)
$0.017
Bonus Offer

Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $8,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Terms apply.

Rating
YBCC Card Rate Stars Filled
YBCC Card Rate Stars Empty
(4.25) Our Review

Our ratings are determined by the authors and editors on our team. Each individual card feature is compared against all other cards we offer and the total score is an average of those 4 ratings.

Review

In many ways, the American Express Platinum card is the crème de la crème of premium travel rewards credit cards. There are not only a laundry list of embedded perks — from hotel and rental car elite statuses to complimentary access to airport lounges through the Global Lounge Collection — but this card also can provide serious value in the form of statement credits with partner merchants. You can see the full list of benefits above.

Truth be told, it may require some work to fully maximize the card’s many perks but it shouldn’t be difficult to recoup at least some, if not all, of the card’s $695 annual fee (Rates and Fees).

An overhaul of the Platinum in 2021 showed Amex wanted to expand this card well beyond travel. While it’s unlikely the Platinum will ever fully shed its decades-long roots in the travel sphere, Amex also hopes to play a role at the top of your wallet whether you are at home or away.

Of course, on the travel front, the card still earns 5X on airfare purchased directly with the airlines or through the Amex Travel portal (on up to $500,000 of airfare purchases per calendar year), 5X on prepaid hotels, provides the most access to lounges of any card issuer, and has built-in travel protections and elite-status perks. This is on top of all the other relatively-recent lifestyle benefit additions — from Uber credits, Equinox credits, preferred restaurant reservations with Resy, and much, much more.

airfare-the-platinum-card-from-american-express

 

A few notes you need to know:

Amex now has language restricting you from getting the bonus on this Card if you have or have had this card OR have had this Card, the Platinum Card® from American Express Exclusively for Charles Schwab, the Platinum Card® from American Express Exclusively for Morgan Stanley or previous versions of these Cards.

Additional Platinum cards are $195 each.

If you want an Authorized User card with none of the benefits, that is still available as the “Companion Platinum Card.” They will simply be able to make charges that post to your account.

Bottom Line:

While the Platinum is a solid choice for most cardholders looking to level up their travel experience, consider other options from both Chase and Capital One including the $550-per-year Chase Sapphire Reserve and $395-per-year Capital One Venture X credit card.

Rates and Fees for the The Platinum Card® from American Express

Read more
Unique Card Benefits
yes
Secondary Car Rental CDW Waiver
yes
Purchase Protection
yes
Extended Warranty
yes
Trip Protections
yes
0% Intro APR on Purchases
no
0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers
no
Free Access to Credit Score
no
Airport Lounge Access
yes
Annual Statement Credits
yes
Grants Hotel Status
yes
Grants Car Rental Status
yes
Earns Transferable Points
yes
Global Entry / TSA PreCheck Reimbursement
yes
Return Protection
yes
Cell Phone Protection
yes
Has No Preset Spending Limit
yes
Concierge Services
yes
Metal Card
yes

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