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Bank of America Unlimited Cash Rewards (Platinum Honors Tier) vs Chase Freedom Flex 2023

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In head-to-head competition, which of these rewards credit cards wins out? Here’s what each has to offer and how they fare when put to the ultimate test — the cash back you’ll earn for using them.

Bank of America Unlimited Cash Rewards (Platinum Honors Tier)
Preferred Rewards Platinum Honors Tier members earn 2.62% unlimited cash back on all purchases — a 75% rewards boost from the standard 1.5% cashback rate. The Bank of America Unlimited Cash Rewards card offers a 0% introductory APR for the first 18 billing cycles for purchases, as well as any balance transfers made within the first 60 days of opening your account.

Chase Freedom Flex
Earn 5% cash back on different categories like gas stations, grocery stores (excluding Target and Walmart) and select online merchants on up to $1,500 in total combined purchases each quarter you activate. Earn 5% on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards; 3% on dining at restaurants (including takeout and eligible delivery services) and drugstores, earn 1% on all other purchases. New cardmembers can earn a $200 bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in the first three months from account opening. Oh, and there's a 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months. And, no, we don’t get paid by the word around here.

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Bank of America Unlimited Cash Rewards (Platinum Honors Tier)

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Bank of America Unlimited Cash Rewards (Platinum Honors Tier) Logo
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Chase Freedom Flex

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Chase Freedom Flex Logo
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Want to compare more cards? Use our full calculator.

Which credit card earns more cash back overall?

Based on identical spending inputs, you’ll earn $314.40 cash back per year with Bank of America Unlimited Cash Rewards (Platinum Honors Tier) and $219.84 with Chase Freedom Flex. For context, the average annual rewards payout from the cashback credit cards in the database is $181.73.

The annual rewards payout assumes you charge $1,000 each month spread across the following spending categories: Dining ($145), Entertainment ($134), Gas ($140), Groceries ($198), Travel ($128), Pharmacy ($15), and Other ($240). The dollar amounts for each category are based on consumer spending data collected by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (i.e., how much the average American spends proportionally across the major credit card rewards categories). But you can — and absolutely should! — customize the inputs based on your actual monthly spending habits, using our rewards calculator.

To ensure the most accurate results possible, the rewards calculations for Bank of America Unlimited Cash Rewards (Platinum Honors Tier) and Chase Freedom Flex incorporate bonus rewards rates, spending caps, default rewards rates and annual fees, where applicable.

Is the Bank of America Unlimited Cash Rewards (Platinum Honors Tier) good?

If you like BofA or Merrill Edge enough to park $100,000 there, welcome to the Platinum Honors Preferred Rewards bonus tier! Your membership comes with a 75% cashback boost — turning this card’s standard 1.5% unlimited rewards rate into a much more noteworthy 2.62% one.

thumb_up Likes

  • Unlimited cash back on all purchases (Booyah!)
  • 75% rewards booster (2.62% vs. 1.5%) for Preferred Rewards customers
  • $200 sign-up bonus
  • 0% intro APR for 18 months on purchases and balance transfers
  • No annual fee
  • Preferred Rewards tiers qualify for additional banking/investing benefits

thumb_down Dislikes

  • Requires maintaining a $100,000 combined minimum in BofA and or Merrill Edge investing accounts for rewards booster
  • Rewards boost may take 30 days to kick in after enrolling in the Preferred Rewards program
  • 3% foreign transaction fee
  • 3% balance transfer fee

Category Default Rate Bonus Rate Bonus Spend Cap Bonus Spend Period (Months)
Gas 2.62% - - -
Travel 2.62% - - -
Dining 2.62% - - -
Entertainment 2.62% - - -
Pharmacy 2.62% - - -
Groceries 2.62% - - -
Other Purchases 2.62% - - -

Is the Chase Freedom Flex good?

Complexity, thy name is Freedom Flex. Keeping up with the rotating (and capped) quarterly cashback bonus categories is … a lot.

thumb_up Likes

  • Rotating 5% cashback category each quarter (great if your spending aligns)
  • 3% cashback on dining and drugstores
  • $200 signup bonus
  • Unlimited 5% cashback on travel purchased through Chase
  • 0% APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months
  • No annual fee
  • Travel/cell phone coverage

thumb_down Dislikes

  • You must opt in each quarter to qualify for bonus rewards rate
  • Low $1,500 quarterly cap on rotating 5% bonus category
  • The 1% default cashback rate — whatevs
  • Rotating bonus categories = extra thinking at checkout
  • Charges a 3% foreign transaction fee

Category Default Rate Bonus Rate Bonus Spend Cap Bonus Spend Period (Months)
Gas 1.00% - - -
Travel 5.00% - - -
Dining 3.00% - - -
Entertainment 1.00% - - -
Pharmacy 3.00% - - -
Groceries 1.00% - - -
Other Purchases 1.00% - - -

sports_kabaddi Compare credit cards

Select and compare two credit cards head to head to see which offers the most bang for your buck.

Select Credit Cards

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The results of the Credit Card Rewards Calculator are based on the monthly spending amounts you enter and the annual dollar value of the rewards each credit card program pays per $1 spent. Credit card companies often express this payout amount as a percentage (e.g., 1.5% of every dollar spent) or on a points basis (e.g. ,1.5 points for every dollar spent). We converted all of them to a dollar amount (“Cash Back Per Year”) to make comparing offers easier.

To calculate the amount of cash back you could earn per year, we factored in:

  • Spend category inputs: The default dollar values for each “Spend Category” in the Best Cashback Credit Cards tool — gas, groceries, travel, restaurant, entertainment, pharmacy, other — are based on average American spending data from the Consumer Expenditure Surveys from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. We also include additional spend categories (such as streaming services, online shopping, utilities, transit, Amazon and more) to help you see which rewards cards are most closely aligned with your actual spending patterns. We encourage you to customize the monthly spend inputs for the most accurate results.
  • Tiered rewards rates: If a rewards credit card pays higher cashback rates on certain spending categories (also called “Bonus Rewards”), that difference is reflected in the total “Cash Back Per Year” tally.
  • Rewards spending caps: Some cards impose category- or time-based limits (monthly, quarterly, annually) that affect the amount of rewards you can earn. For example, a card may pay 3% cash back on groceries on up to $1,000 of spending each quarter, then revert to the base/default rewards rate until the following quarter. We accounted for bonus spending caps and timeframe in the calculations.
  • Default rewards rates: Purchases that exceed a spending cap are usually subject to a lower default rewards rate (e.g., 1% or 1.5%). We mathed that out too.
  • Annual fees: If a rewards card charges an annual fee, we deducted that amount from the “Cash Back Per Year” total to provide a true accounting of a card’s annual rewards payout.

What’s not included in the “Cash Back Per Year” total is the cash value of any sign-up/introductory bonus. We highlight any Welcome Bonus separately. While sign-up bonuses can be the most lucrative part of getting a new cashback rewards credit card, not everyone will want or be able to do what it takes to earn the extra cash. (It usually requires spending a certain amount in a specified time period after the card is activated.)