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Chase Freedom Unlimited® vs. Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card
Chase takes the lead with limited time rewards on groceries and Lyft.
Updated . What changed?
The main difference between the Chase Freedom Unlimited® and the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Cardis that the first earns 5% back on three categories, two of which are promotional, 3% back on two categories and 1.5% back on all other purchases. The Capital One card earns only 1.5% back on all purchases.
Summary of card features
Chase Freedom Unlimited®
- Earn 5% on travel purchased through Chase, 3% on dining at restaurants and drugstores, and an impressive 1.5% on all other purchases.
- Get a signup bonus of $200 after you spend $500 within your first 3 months of account opening.
- You'll also earn 5% cash back at grocery stores on up to $12,000 in the first year (then 1.5%).
- Don't pay an annual fee.
Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card
- No annual fee
- $150 cash bonus when you spend $500 on purchases in the first 3 months
- 1.5% cash back on all purchases
- Long intro APR for purchases
Best signup bonus: Chase Freedom Unlimited®
This is a pretty straightforward matchup: the Chase Freedom Unlimited® earns $200 after you spend $500 in your first 3 months, plus 5% cash back at grocery stores on up to $12,000 in the first year. The Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card earns just $150 for spending the same amount in the same amount of time. More is better in this case, so you’ll want to go with the Chase Freedom Unlimited®.
Best rewards: Chase Freedom Unlimited®
Ordinarily, these cards would be tied, as both earn a flat 1.5% on all purchases. However, the Chase Freedom Unlimited® pulls ahead here thanks to the September 2020 update. You now earn:
- 5% back at grocery stores on up to $12,000 during your first year of card membership
- 5% back on Lyft rides through March 2022
- 5% back on travel purchase through the Chase Ultimate Rewards
- 3% back at drugstores
- 3% back at restaurants, including dining and takeout
- 1.5% back on all other purchases
The simple flat 1.5% back on all purchases offered by the Capital One card is no match for all the Freedom Unlimited cashback categories.
Ordinarily, these cards would be tied, as both earn a flat 1.5% on all purchases. However, the Chase Freedom Unlimited® pulls ahead here thanks to a limited-time reward category on Lyft rides, earning 5% back on eligible Lyft purchases.
Best intro APR: Chase Freedom Unlimited®
For the most part, both the Chase Freedom Unlimited® and Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card offer a solid intro APR on purchases. The only thing that gives the Chase Freedom Unlimited® the edge is a potentially lower revert APR.
Best annual fee: Tie
Neither the Chase Freedom Unlimited® nor the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card require an annual fee for use. This is always something to look out for if you want a simple rewards card without all the extra perks.
Best for no foreign transaction fee: Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card
One advantage the Quicksilver offers over the Freedom Unlimited is a lack of foreign transaction fees. This makes it the more appealing choice to use when you’re traveling abroad.
The winner: Chase Freedom Unlimited®
Make no mistake, you can’t go wrong for going with either of these choices. But you’ll get the best value with the Chase Freedom Unlimited®. The extra reward categories can help over the long run — or at least for as long as the Freedom keeps the bonus categories.
To maximize your rewards, consider adding the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card or the Chase Sapphire Reserve® to your wallet. This will allow you to transfer your points to one of the two and get either 25% or 50% higher value when you redeem for travel purchases via the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal. You can also use these cards to transfer points to partner hotels and airlines with a 1:1 ratio.
Make no mistake, you can’t go wrong for going with either of these choices. But if you’re looking to squeeze every last bit of value out of a flat cashback card, we recommend the Chase Freedom Unlimited®. The extra reward categories and lower revert APR can help out over the long run — or at least for as long as the Freedom keeps the bonus categories.
If you’re looking for a cashback card that offers bonus categories, or something else altogether, there are many other credit cards with reward options to explore.
Who should get the Chase Freedom Unlimited®?
Anyone who wants to earn higher cash back on a variety of everyday purchases should go for the Chase Freedom Unlimited® card.
If you’re looking for a great flat cashback card that happens to offer some terrific limited-time earning bonuses, the Chase Freedom Unlimited® is the way to go. This card is also an essential piece of the Chase trifecta.
Who should get the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card?
If you’re not a fan of Chase cards or want a flat cashback card with no foreign transaction fee, the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card is a solid alternative to the Freedom Unlimited.
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