Review of Chase Ultimate Cash Award Card



The Chase Ultimate Cash Award Card was last reviewed on : 17th April 2005



News Update - As of 31st July 2005, Chase is no longer offering the Chase Ultimate Cash Award Card. In its place, it has introduced a new cash rebate credit card, called the Chase Cash Plus Rewards Card. The new card is unlike the Chase Ultimate Cash Award card in that it is not a tiered reward card, but an "everyday purchase" card similar to the Citi Dividend Platinum Select Card. If you are looking for a tiered rebate card, we suggest you consider the Blue Cash from American Express, which has almost identical features as this card.

Summary - The Chase Ultimate Cash Award Card is on our Editor's Choice List and recommended to those looking for a cash rebate card because
  • You can earn up to 5% rebates on "everyday purchases"
  • You can earn up to 2% rebates on "other purchases"
  • There is no annual fee
  • You can earn unlimited rebates

Let's find out more about this card.

Rebate Formula - The Chase Ultimate Cash Award Card is a tiered cash back credit card. This is how the rebate formula works. You to earn up to 5% for purchases at standalone supermarkets, drugstores, gas stations and home improvement stores. You start to earn 5% rebates once your annual expenditure exceeds $6,000. You can earn up to 2% rebates on other purchases. The 2% rebate starts kicking in once annual expenditure exceeds $6,000. You do not need to carry a huge balance to earn the full rebate (just $0.01 or more). You can redeem your cash rebates when you have earned $25.00. You can earn unlimited cash rebates.



Purchases at standalone supermarkets, gas stations and drugstores
Annual Spending Rebate % If you carry a monthly balance ($0.01 or more) Maximum rebate %
$0-$2000 0.50% Add 2.00% 2.50%
$2000.01-$6000 1.00% Add 2.00% 3.00%
more than $6,000 3.00% Add 2.00% 5.00%
Other Purchases
Annual Spending Rebate % If you carry a monthly balance ($0.01 or more) Maximum rebate %
$0-$2000 0.25% Add 0.50% 0.75%
$2000.01-$6000 0.50% Add 0.50% 1.00%
more than $6,000 1.50% Add 0.50% 2.00%


Annual Fee and APR - The Chase Ultimate Cash Award Card has no annual fee. There APR is either Prime Rate plus 7.99%, 12.99% or 15.99% depending on your credit profile. You get a 0% APR on balance transfers for the first 9 months. This credit card uses the two-cycle average daily balance method (including new purchases) of calculating balances.



Conckusion - The Chase Ultimate Cash Award Card key strength is the 2% rebate payout for "other purchases". Though they pay 5% for purchases at standalone supermarkets, gas stations and drugstores, the Citi Dividend Platinum Select Card also pay 5% on these purchases without any strings attached and it a better option for these types of purchases. However, for "other purchases", I think the
Chase Ultimate Cash Award Card is the card to beat. The reason is because you can earn unlimited rebates and you only need to carry a minimal balance to earn maximum rebates. It beats the American Express Blue Cash, which has almost an identical rebate formula, but only allows you to earn rebates for up to $50,000 in annual spending. It is also better than the Chase Cashbuilder, which requires that you actually carry a balance of $500 or more to earn maximum rebates and caps you to earning $500 in cash rebates a year.

We have included the Chase Ultimate Cash Award Card in our Editor's Choice list because of the rebate payout for non-standalone supermarket, gas station and drugstore purchases, ability to earn unlimited rebates and for requiring only a nominal balance to be carried to earn "maximum rebates".

Possible Combinations - The Ultimate Cash Award Card is best combined with the Citi® Dividend Platinum Select® Card citi dividend,which has a simple, non-tiered rebate formula that pays 5% on purchases at standalone supermarkets, gas stations and drugstores and 1% for other purchases. Charge your purchases at standalone supermarkets, gas stations or drugstores to the Citi cards. Charge the rest of your "other purchases to the" the Chase Ultimate Cash Award Card. This makes a great cash rebate credit card combination.

Positives
  • High rebate payout on everyday purchase
  • High rebate payout on for "other" purchases as well
  • No annual fee
  • Only requires you to carry a nominal balance to earn "maximum rebates", unlike the Chase Cashbuilder
  • Best combined with the Citi Dividend Platinum Select Card

Negatives
  • Have to spend more than $6,000 and carry a balance to earn full rebate



Chase Ultimate Cash Award Card
Reward Benefits
Rebate Percentages Tiered level Cash Back reward
Earn up to 5% cash rewards on everyday purchases if you carry a balance and if annual expenditure exceeds$6,000
Earn up to 2% cash reward on other purchases if you carry a balance and if annual expenditure exceeds $6000
Cost/Fees/Interest rates
Introductory rate 0% introductory APR on balance transfers for first 9 months
Annual Fee No annual fee
Purchase APR Prime Rate plus 7.99% for Elite Pricing
Prime Rate plus 12.99% for Premium Pricing
Prime Rate plus 15.99% for Standard Pricing
Balance Transfer APR Prime Rate plus 7.99% for Elite Pricing
Prime Rate plus 12.99% for Premium Pricing
Prime Rate plus 15.99% for Standard Pricing
Cash Advance APR Prime Rate plus 15.99%
min is 19.99% for Elite and Premium Pricing
min is 23.99% for Standard Pricing
Penalty/Default Rate APR Prime Rate plus 23.99%
Min Finance Charge $1.00
Grace Period 20 days
Balance Calculation Method Two Cycle Average Daily Balance (including new purchases)
Balance Transfer Fee 3%, min $5.00, max $75.00 per transaction
Cash Advance fee 3% min $10.00
Foreign Currency Conversion fee 3% of the converted transaction amount.
Over-the-credit-limit fee $35.00
Late Payment fee $15.00 - up to but not including $250
$39.00 - $250 or greater



Read our cardholders review of the Chase Ultimate Cash Award Card

As this card is no longer offered by Chase, we suggest that you consider the Blue Cash from American Express, which has the almost the same rebate payout as the Ultimate Cash Award card.

If you have this credit card, we would appreciate if you could spend a few minutes to post your review here




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