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October 3, 2017

Review: Chase Freedom Unlimited vs Chase Slate

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Looking to make a large purchase or pay down credit card debt? Chase Slate or Chase Freedom Unlimited might be for you.

But there are important differences you need to know about. Read on for our in-depth comparison of these two cards.

 

Chase Freedom Unlimited

Chase Slate

 

Interest Rates and Fees

Introductory APR for Purchases0% introductory APR for 15 months0% introductory APR for 15 months
Introductory APR for Balance Transfers0% introductory APR for 15 months0% introductory APR for 15 months
Purchase APR15.99% to 24.74% Variable based on your creditworthiness and other factors15.99% to 24.74% Variable based on your creditworthiness and other factors
Balance Transfers APR15.99% to 24.74% Variable based on your creditworthiness and other factors15.99% to 24.74% Variable based on your creditworthiness and other factors
Balance Transfer FeeEither $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater$0 intro balance transfer fee on transfers made within 60 days of account opening. After that: Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Annual Fee$0 annual fee$0 annual fee
 

Benefits and Features

Cash Back DealIntroductory Bonus Cash Back: Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. 
Cash BackCash Back Rewards: Unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase - it's automatic! 

Chase Slate: Pricing information including interest rates, benefits and fees was obtained on July 17, 2017 from published websites and is believed to be accurate, but not guaranteed.

Disclaimer: The information for the Chase Slate has been collected independently by CreditDonkey. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

What They Have in Common

  • No annual fee
  • 0% Introductory APR for purchases and balance transfers for 15 months. After that, a variable APR of 15.99% to 24.74%.

Keep reading to see the pros and cons of each card.

Where the Chase Slate Excels

The Chase Slate is often lauded as the best card on the market right now for paying down credit card debt, with an introductory APR on balance transfers and purchases, no balance transfer fee promotion, and a payment program aimed at helping you pay off purchases quickly.

The Slate also comes with the Blueprint Payment Program, which aims to help you stay on track with paying off your balance while minimizing the interest you'll accrue. To that end, you'll have four ways of managing your Slate balance:

  1. Full Pay lets you pay off the charges in your highest spending categories at the end of each month, helping you to avoid accumulating interest on those purchases.
  2. Split helps you pay off a specific purchase, either over a set number of payments or by deciding how much of each monthly payment will go toward that purchase.
  3. Finish It allows you to set your monthly payment amounts and project how long it will take you to pay off your balance, showing how much interest you'll accumulate along the way.
  4. Track It shows your highest spending categories, helping you to analyze your budget and adjust your spending.

If you do make a late payment on the Slate, you won't be penalized with a raised interest rate (APR). Other terms and conditions will still apply, but this a nice touch for a card that aims to help you pay down debt quickly and cut down on interest.

Tip: Interested in the Slate? You might also want to consider the Citi Simplicity, which offers a 21-month introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers, no penalty APR for late payments, no late payment fee, and no annual fee. Head to our full review for more information.

Where the Chase Freedom Unlimited Excels

The Freedom Unlimited is better suited for cardholders who want to earn consistent and straightforward rewards on their daily spending. Here are some of the card's highlights:

Chase Freedom Unlimited
Apply for Chase Freedom Unlimited
At Chase's Secure Site
Intro APR for PurchasesIntro APR for Balance TransferRegular APRAnnual Fee
0% for 15 months
0% for 15 months
15.99% - 24.74% Variable
$0

The ease of earning rewards with the Freedom Unlimited is one of the card's draws, for some. But for current Chase cardholders, you can also use the card to combine Ultimate Rewards points among your Chase accounts.

Tip: You can transfer points from your Freedom Unlimited to another Ultimate Rewards card belonging to you, your spouse, or your domestic partner.

To round out your earnings, you could use the Freedom Unlimited alongside your Chase Freedom card, which earns 5% cash back in rotating categories. Or, if you carry the Sapphire Preferred or Ink Business Preferred, you can transfer your points to that card and increase their value with its redemption options for travel.

Keep in Mind

  • Both cards have a foreign transaction fee: 3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars.

  • Both Chase cards have the 5/24 rule. If you have opened 5 credit cards in the past 24 months, even from other banks, you will not be approved for a new Chase credit card.

Bottom Line

If you're looking to pay down debt, you'll have a hard time finding a better Chase card than the Slate. Its 15-month introductory APR for purchases and balance transfers, no balance transfer fees for the first 60 days, and no penalty APR make it a competitive option.

Although the Slate doesn't earn rewards, it covers all the bases for helping you pay down your balance.

If you want to pay down a big purchase over a period of months while earning rewards, the Freedom Unlimited will likely offer you better value. You'll still benefit from an introductory APR on purchases (for the first 15 months) and purchase protection, and you'll also have the potential to combine points with your other Ultimate Rewards cards.

For more information on either card, you can head to our full reviews of the Chase Slate and Freedom Unlimited, or read up on other Chase cards to compare their offerings.

Chase Freedom Unlimited
Apply for Chase Freedom Unlimited
At Chase's Secure Site
Intro APR for PurchasesIntro APR for Balance TransferRegular APRAnnual Fee
0% for 15 months
0% for 15 months
15.99% - 24.74% Variable
$0

Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer. This site may be compensated through the Advertiser's affiliate programs.

Disclaimer: The information for the Chase Freedom, Citi Simplicity® Card, and Chase Slate has been collected independently by CreditDonkey. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

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Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed on this page are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer.

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