Finder is committed to editorial independence. While we receive compensation when you click links to partners, they do not influence our content.

Citi® Double Cash Card vs. Chase Freedom Flex℠

Two strong cash back choices, one tough decision.

The winner for cashback categories: Chase Freedom Flex℠

Up to 5%

Cash back

  • 5% back in rotating categories on up to $1,500 quarterly, then 1%
  • New rewards on travel, dining and drugstores
  • No annual fee
Apply now
Please note: Citi is an advertising partner of finder.com

The Citi® Double Cash Card and Chase Freedom Flex℠ are both household names in the cashback card space, but they fundamentally differ in one important way. The Citi® Double Cash Card is a flat-rate cashback card, offering 1% cash back on all purchases and another 1% as you pay them off. Meanwhile, the Chase Freedom Flex℠ is a rotating-bonus-category card, offering 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined bonus spending in different categories each quarter, then 1%.

Other differences: Citi’s card is superior for balance transfers, offering 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 18 months, then 13.99% to 23.99% variable. Meanwhile, Chase’s card offers an intro APR on purchases, as well as new flat-rate categories in travel, restaurants and drugstores it received in September 2020.

The winner: Chase Freedom Flex

If you want the highest flat rewards on the market and you value simplicity, its tough to do better than the Citi® Double Cash Card. But the recent flat-rate additions to the Freedom Flex have greatly increased its value, particularly if you spend a lot on dining and travel. Combined with the accelerated earning of the rotating cashback categories, the Chase Freedom Flex℠ is a pound-for-pound value behemoth.

Citi® Double Cash Card

Citi® Double Cash Card

Terms apply, see rates & fees

Chase Freedom Flex℠

Chase Freedom Flex℠

Terms apply, see rates & fees

Finder rating
Finder rating

★★★★★

3.8 / 5.0

★★★★★

4.7 / 5.0
Best for
Best for
  • Highest unlimited cash back
  • Long intro APR period and cash back in rotating categories
Welcome offer
Welcome offer

N/A

$200 after spending $500 in the first 3 months, plus 5% cash back at grocery stores (not including Target® or Walmart®) on up to $12,000 in the first year

Rewards
Rewards

Up to 2% cash back on purchases (1% when you buy plus 1% as you pay)

5% cash back on up to $1,500 combined in quarterly categories you activate, 5% on Chase travel purchased through Ultimate Rewards®, 3% on dining and drugstores, and 1% on all other purchases

Purchase APR
Purchase APR

13.99% to 23.99% variable

0% intro APR for 15 months, and then 14.99% to 23.74% variable

Annual fee
Annual fee $0 $0
Balance transfer APR
Balance transfer APR

0% intro APR for 18 months, then 13.99% to 23.99% variable

14.99% to 23.74% variable
Cash advance
Cash advance

APR: 25.24% variable

Fee: $10 or 5% of the transaction, whichever is greater

APR: 24.99% variable

Fee: $10 or 5% of the transaction, whichever is greater

Foreign transaction fee
Foreign transaction fee 3% of each transaction 3% of each transaction
Late payment fee
Late payment fee Up to $40 Up to $39
Additional cardholder fee
Additional cardholder fee $0 $0
Interest-free period
Interest-free period 23 days 21 days
Minimum interest
Minimum interest $0.50 $0
Minimum credit score
Minimum credit score 670 670
Card type
Card type Credit Credit
Learn more
Learn more

Read review

Read review

Citi® Double Cash Card vs. Chase Freedom Flex℠ breakdown

When choosing a card that’s right for you, it’s important to compare the benefits and determine which card comes out on top and which benefits you prioritize most for your spending needs. Let’s have a look at how each card performs in a few categories.

Best signup bonus: Chase Freedom Flex℠

There’s no contest here: the Chase Freedom Flex℠ offers a $200 signup bonus after you spend $500 in your first 3 months of account opening, plus you earn 5% cash back at grocery stores on up to $12,000 in the first year. This does not include purchases made at Walmart or Target. Combine the two and you get a $200 back during the first year. The Citi® Double Cash Card, on the other hand, offers no signup bonus at all.

When it comes to cashback cards, a signup bonus typically isn’t as important as the long-term value produced by the card’s earning categories. So let’s move on and get to the meat of this face-off: the cash back.

Best cash back: Tie

Unfortunately, picking a clear winner between the two of these cards is tough. That’s because which card you pick ultimately comes down to your spending. The Citi® Double Cash Card is a flat-rate card, with one of the highest rates on the market at that. This means so long as you keep up on your payments, you’ll earn a cool 2% back on all purchases with no cap. This makes the card great for everyday spending throughout the year for your standard consumer — no need to juggle timing windows or earning caps to maximize your rewards.

The Chase Freedom Flex℠, on the other hand, is a rotating category cashback card. It earns a higher cash back rate at 5%, but only on certain categories that rotate out throughout the year. You’ll also only be able to earn this larger rate up to a spending cap, about $1,500 in combined purchases for that quarter. Add the 5% cashback at grocery stores during your first year and the 5% back on Lyft rides until March 31, 2022, and you’re looking at bigger returns on your spending.

Best intro APR: Tie

We’ve got another tie here, as each card offers a different type of introductory APR offer. The Citi® Double Cash Card sports a 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 18 months, reverting to 13.99% to 23.99% variable. The Chase Freedom Flex℠ instead offers a 0% intro APR on purchases for 15 months, reverting to 14.99% to 23.74% variable.

We almost gave the nod to the Chase Freedom Flex℠ for one reason: Its intro APR offer fits in rather naturally with what you’ll be doing with the card anyway – making purchases and shooting for your signup bonus.

Citi’s conundrum is you really shouldn’t use a card that’s received a balance transfer to make purchases until you pay off your transferred debt. That means if you use your Citi® Double Cash Card for a balance transfer, you won’t be earning any cash back with the card until you pay off your balance (and balance transfer payments don’t earn you cash back.) But another way to frame the Citi® Double Cash Card is as a solid balance transfer card with excellent ongoing cash back. And that’s a rarity when it comes to balance transfer cards.

Best additional perks and features: Tie

One thing not necessarily apparent when you’re looking at the Chase Freedom Flex℠ features is that it actually earns Ultimate Reward points. You can trade these in for a statement credit, but you can also redeem them on travel, gift cards, or transfer them to another Chase card. If you transfer them to a Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, you can then transfer them to Chase travel partner, which can significantly boost the value of your rewards with the Chase Freedom Flex℠. The downside: you need to invest in another Chase card and put in some research and work to take full advantage.

The Citi® Double Cash Card comes with Citi Entertainment, which grants access to presale tickets or VIP packages for sports, concerts and more. This is a nice, simplistic perk that can offer some value if you enjoy concerts and dining. And of course, you get this value with just one card.

Compare Citi® Double Cash Card vs. Chase Freedom Flex℠

Name Product Welcome offer Rewards Annual fee Filter values
Citi® Double Cash Card
N/A
Up to 2% cash back on purchases (1% when you buy plus 1% as you pay)
$0
Earn up to 2% on every purchase with no annual fee. This is the highest flat-rate cashback card on the market.
Chase Freedom Flex℠
$200 after spending $500 in the first 3 months, plus 5% cash back at grocery stores (not including Target® or Walmart®) on up to $12,000 in the first year
5% cash back on up to $1,500 combined in quarterly categories you activate, 5% on Chase travel purchased through Ultimate Rewards®, 3% on dining and drugstores, and 1% on all other purchases
$0
Get up to 5% cashback in rotating and newly added everyday categories. The refreshed Freedom Flex card has lots of earning potential.
loading

Compare up to 4 providers

More guides on Finder

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder.com provides guides and information on a range of products and services. Because our content is not financial advice, we suggest talking with a professional before you make any decision.

By submitting your comment or question, you agree to our Privacy and Cookies Policy and finder.com Terms of Use.

Questions and responses on finder.com are not provided, paid for or otherwise endorsed by any bank or brand. These banks and brands are not responsible for ensuring that comments are answered or accurate.
Go to site