Credit card showdown: Chase Freedom Flex vs. Discover it Cash Back

Premium travel rewards credit cards often steal the spotlight when it comes to credit card discussions. With their extravagant benefits and perks, it’s easy to see why. However, it’s important not to overlook solid rewards cards with more modest perks and no annual fees. Cards like the Chase Freedom Flex and Discover itĀ® Cash Back may not offer the same level of luxury, but they provide great earning opportunities, a solid rate of return on everyday spending, and 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers.

These two cards, in particular, are worth comparing due to their similar earning structures, recommended credit score, and other perks. Let’s take a closer look at how the Chase Freedom Flex and Discover it Cash Back stack up against each other.

Chase Freedom Flex vs. Discover it Cash Back Comparison:

Chase Freedom Flex:
– Annual fee: $0
– Welcome offer: $200 cash back after spending $500 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
– Earning rates: 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in purchases on quarterly bonus categories (activation required, 1% after that), 5% back on Lyft rides (through March 2025), 5% cash back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3% cash back on dining (including takeout and eligible delivery services), 3% cash back on drugstore purchases, 1% cash back on all other purchases
– Additional benefits: Cellphone protection, purchase protection, zero liability protection, extended warranty protection, trip cancellation/interruption insurance, no foreign transaction fees

Discover it Cash Back:
– Annual fee: $0
– Welcome offer: Double cash back on all purchases during the first year
– Earning rates: 5% on up to $1,500 quarterly rotating categories, 1% on everything else
– Additional benefits: Online privacy protection, $0 fraud liability guarantee, free Social Security number alerts

Freedom Flex vs. Discover it Welcome Offer:

The Freedom Flex offers a $200 cash back welcome offer after spending $500 on purchases in the first three months. On the other hand, Discover it will match the cash back earned on all purchases during the first year, effectively doubling the card’s earning rates for the first 12 months. If you earn more than $200 cash back on the Discover it during your first year, its welcome offer will outweigh the Freedom Flex’s.

Winner: Discover it

Freedom Flex vs. Discover it Benefits:

The Freedom Flex card offers several common benefits for a no-annual-fee card, including cellphone protection, shopping protections, and trip cancellation/interruption insurance. Cardholders also enjoy three months of complimentary DashPass with DoorDash, providing free delivery on eligible orders and reduced service fees.

While the Discover it is shorter on benefits, it still offers online privacy protection, a $0 fraud liability guarantee, and free Social Security number alerts if Discover finds your number used on a dark website.

Winner: Freedom Flex

Earning Cash Back on the Freedom Flex vs. Discover it:

The Freedom Flex comes with impressive earning bonuses, including 5% on rotating categories each quarter (up to $1,500 spent, activation required), 5% on Lyft rides (through March 2025), 5% on travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3% on dining, 3% on drugstore purchases, and 1% on all other purchases. These earning categories are exceptional, especially for a no-annual-fee card.

The Discover it also has a rotating 5% bonus category with a quarterly calendar, but it doesn’t offer the same earning rates as the Freedom Flex.

Winner: Freedom Flex

Redeeming Cash Back on the Freedom Flex vs. Discover it:

The Discover it Cash Back is a straightforward cash-back credit card, where each point is worth 1 cent apiece toward statement credits on purchases, gift cards, charitable donations, and deposits into a linked bank account.

The points earned with the Chase Freedom Flex are also worth 1 cent apiece toward statement credits, travel booked through Chase, gift cards, and direct deposits into linked U.S. bank accounts. However, if you have another card that earns transferable Ultimate Rewards points, you can combine the points from your Freedom Flex card and make them transferable to the Ultimate Rewards program’s airline and hotel transfer partners.

Winner: Freedom Flex

Transferring Cash Back on the Freedom Flex vs. Discover it:

By converting your Freedom Flex rewards, you can increase the value of your points on direct travel redemptions through the Chase portal. Instead of 1 cent per point, you can unlock 1.25-1.5 cents per point, depending on the other Chase Ultimate Rewards card you carry. This means you can potentially increase your rate of return by 25 to 50%.

Some of the best Chase transfer partners include Hyatt, United, British Airways, and Singapore Airlines, offering luxurious hotel stays or flights. This flexibility gives the Freedom Flex an edge over the Discover it in terms of transferring cash back.

Winner: Freedom Flex

Should I Get the Freedom Flex or Discover it?

If you’re a frequent traveler looking to boost your points balance and value flexibility in point redemptions, the Chase Freedom Flex is the better choice, especially if you have another Chase Ultimate Rewards card. However, if you’re just starting to build credit and want a no-frills, no-fee card with a great rate of return, the Discover it Cash Back is an excellent choice.

Bottom Line:

Both the Chase Freedom Flex and Discover it Cash Back offer valuable rotating bonus categories, making it justifiable to have both cards. They are among the best no-annual-fee cash-back offerings on the market. With the Discover it’s matched cash back offer and the additional perks on the Freedom Flex, these cards are worth considering for cash-back enthusiasts.

To learn more about these cards, read our full reviews of the Chase Freedom Flex and Discover it.

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