Citi Double Cash® Card
vs. Chase Freedom Flex®

Updated: June 15, 2024

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Both the Citi Double Cash Card and the Chase Freedom Flex Card offer enticing cash back rewards without an annual fee, appealing to savvy spenders looking for value. However, the Citi Double Cash Card edges ahead with its straightforward 2% cash back on all purchases, making it a compelling choice for those who prefer simplicity and consistent rewards.

The Chase Freedom Flex Card, with its higher cash back in rotating categories, is a strong contender for those who don't mind keeping track of categories to maximize their returns. While the Citi Double Cash Card is generally more accessible due to its acceptance of fair credit, both cards demand good to excellent credit for approval.

Credit Card logo for Citi Double Cash® Card
Citi Double Cash® Card
Credit Card logo for Chase Freedom Flex®
Chase Freedom Flex®
MoneyGeek Rating
4.4/ of 5
MoneyGeek Rating
4.4/ of 5

  • Regular APR
    19.24% - 29.24% variable
    20.49–29.24% variable
    0% APR Offer
    -
    0% intro APR for 15 months
    Intro Offer
    Earn $200 Cash Back
    Earn a $200 bonus
    Rewards Summary
    Earn 1%–5% cash back
    Earn 1– 5% cash back
    Balance Transfer Offer
    0% for 18 months on balance transfers
    0% intro APR for 15 months
    Balance Transfer Fee
    5% of each transfer ($5 minimum)
    3% of the amount of each transfer (minimum $5)
    Annual Fee
    $0
    $0
    Recommended Credit
    670-850 (Good to Excellent)
    670–850 (Good to Excellent)
    Penalty APR
    Up to 29.99% (Variable)
    Up to 29.99% (variable)
    Not sure?

Which Card Is Better for You?

You might prefer the Freedom Flex if you enjoy maximizing rewards in rotating categories and can benefit from the card's bonus cash back on dining, travel and drugstore purchases. Its 0% introductory APR on purchases, in addition to balance transfers, provides flexibility for new purchases or paying down existing debt.

You might prefer the Citi Double Cash if you value simplicity in earning rewards and would like a consistent return on all purchases. The longer 0% introductory APR period on balance transfers may appeal to you if you're planning to transfer and pay down a balance over time.

Head-to-Head Comparison: Card Details and Features

Evaluating APRs, fees, credit requirements, rewards, introductory offers and other features will illuminate which card aligns with your financial habits. For instance, if you prefer straightforward rewards, Citi Double Cash may appeal with its flat-rate cash back, whereas the Freedom Flex offers high rewards in rotating categories. Use this section to align card benefits with your spending patterns.

    discount icon

    Regular APR: Citi Double Cash

    The Citi Double Cash Card offers a slightly better starting APR at 19.24% compared to the Chase Freedom Flex Card's starting point of 20.49%. Both cards have a variable APR that can go up to 29.24%.

    annualFee icon

    Annual Fee: Tie

    Both the Citi Double Cash Card and the Chase Freedom Flex Card have no annual fee, making them equally appealing for those looking to avoid extra costs.

    lowInterestAPR icon

    Introductory 0% APRs: Freedom Flex

    For those prioritizing introductory 0% APR offers on both purchases and balance transfers, the Freedom Flex offers a 0% intro APR for 15 months on both, with a lower balance transfer fee, while the Citi Double Cash does not provide an intro APR for purchases and charges a higher fee for balance transfers.

    coins icon

    Rewards: Freedom Flex

    The Freedom Flex is better for rewards, offering 5% cash back on rotating categories and travel purchased through Chase, plus 3% on dining and drugstore purchases. The Citi Double Cash provides a flat 2% on all purchases, with a temporary 5% back on travel booked through Citi until 12/31/24.

    rewards icon

    Welcome Offers: Chase Freedom Flex

    The Freedom Flex card offers a more advantageous welcome bonus, requiring a lower spend to earn a $200 bonus within the first 3 months, compared to the Citi Double Cash card's $200 cash back after a $1,500 spend in 6 months.

    creditApproved icon

    Recommended Credit Score: Tie

    Both the Citi Double Cash and the Freedom Flex require a credit score range of 670 to 850, indicating they are equally accessible to individuals with good to excellent credit.

    autopay icon

    Penalties and Fees: Tie

    Both cards impose similar penalties and fees, including up to a 29.99% penalty APR and a 3% foreign transaction fee. The Citi Double Cash has a slightly higher late fee of up to $41 compared to the Freedom Flex's $40, and both cards have a cash advance fee of 5% of the transaction amount.

    points icon

    Issuer Satisfaction: Tie

    Citibank and JP Morgan Chase have an equal satisfaction rating of 4.1.

    airplane icon

    Other Features & Perks: Tie

    Both cards offer unique perks. Citi Double Cash provides access to the Citi Entertainment program, enhancing your experiences with exclusive event access. Freedom Flex offers purchase protection, extended warranty and trip cancellation/interruption insurance, along with access to Chase's Ultimate Rewards program.

Rewards Comparison

The Citi Double Cash has a flat-rate cash back, offering 2% on all purchases — 1% when you buy and another 1% as you pay for those purchases. This simplicity is great if you prefer a no-fuss rewards program.

The Freedom Flex card offers 5% cash back in rotating categories each quarter (on up to $1,500 in purchases upon activation), 5% on travel booked through Chase and 3% on dining and drugstore purchases. While the Freedom Flex requires more engagement to maximize rewards, it can outpace the Citi Double Cash if you leverage the bonus categories effectively.

For the Freedom Flex, the rotating categories demand attention but offer a high reward rate. These categories have included:

  • Gas stations
  • Grocery stores (excluding Target and Walmart)
  • Select online merchants

Cardholders should stay informed about the current categories to fully benefit from the 5% cash back. The upcoming table compares the bonus categories for both cards.

Category
Citi Double Cash
Freedom Flex

Rotating Categories

1%/1% as you pay

5% for the first $1,500 quarterly/1% thereafter

Dining

1%/1% as you pay

3%

Drugstores

1%/1% as you pay

3%

Travel

5% if purchased through Citi Travel portal

5% if purchased through Chase Travel portal

All Other Purchases

1%/1% as you pay

1%

Redeeming Rewards

With the Freedom Flex, you can redeem points for cash, gift cards or travel, with the value depending on your choice. Your points remain valid as long as your account is active. The Citi Double Cash allows you to redeem cash back directly into your bank account, apply it as a statement credit or request a check.

Additionally, you can convert cash back into ThankYou Points for other rewards. There's no rush to redeem, as your rewards won't expire as long as your account is in good standing.

Methodology

MoneyGeek evaluates credit cards like the Freedom Flex and Citi Double Cash using a comprehensive scoring system. For each card, scores are assigned for various use cases such as balance transfers and cash back. The score highlighted in this comparison reflects the highest scoring use case for each card, which is cash back for both.

The largest factors influencing these scores include the effective reward rate and the offer return on investment. Other considerations include annual fees, introductory purchase rates and issuer satisfaction. For a detailed understanding of our process, you can review our ranking methodology.

FAQ: Citi Double Cash vs. Freedom Flex Card

What are the main differences in rewards between the Citi Double Cash and Chase Freedom Flex cards?
Which card offers a longer 0% intro APR period for balance transfers?
Do either of the cards have an annual fee?
Can I earn a sign-up bonus with either the Citi Double Cash or Chase Freedom Flex cards?
How do the foreign transaction fees compare between the Citi Double Cash and Chase Freedom Flex cards?

About Doug Milnes, CFA


Doug Milnes, CFA headshot

Doug Milnes is a CFA charter holder with over 10 years of experience in corporate finance and the Head of Credit Cards at MoneyGeek. Formerly, he performed valuations for Duff and Phelps and financial planning and analysis for various companies. His analysis has been cited by U.S. News and World Report, The Hill, the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times and many other outlets.

Milnes holds a master’s degree in data science from Northwestern University. He geeks out on helping people feel on top of their credit card use, from managing debt to optimizing rewards.


*Rates, fees or bonuses may vary or include specific stipulations. The content on this page is accurate as of the posting/last updated date; however, some of the offers mentioned may have expired. We recommend visiting the card issuer’s website for the most up-to-date information available.
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