My family loves using Chase points for travel, but we'd recommend the Chase Freedom Flex to anyone looking to maximize cash back during quarantine

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  • My family has used Chase Ultimate Rewards points to book travel to Colorado, Hawaii, and Washington, DC.
  • When the pandemic hit, we shifted our strategy away from travel rewards and toward cash back.
  • We applied for the Chase Freedom because it allows us to earn cash back instead, and it offers a sign-up bonus with a relatively low spending requirement.
  • The Chase Freedom is no longer available, but the Chase Freedom Flex℠ — and it offers even more bonus categories for earning cash back.
  • See Business Insider's list of the best cash-back credit cards »

Like everyone else, my family's travel plans came to a halt in March, when the coronavirus pandemic hit. We had a trip to Cabo with my husband's work and a five-year anniversary celebration in California that were both postponed. 

It wasn't just our travel plans that had to change; our credit card rewards strategy did, too. With no upcoming travel for the foreseeable future, we weren't opening new cards or using the ones we had to book travel. We also decided to rein in our spending to protect against whatever the future would hold.

After a few months' break from award travel, I decided it was time to revisit our rewards credit card options. I knew that I didn't want to open a new card if we'd to spend a few thousand dollars to earn a welcome bonus of travel points. That's why we ultimately deciding on a Chase Freedom card with no annual fee.

The Chase Freedom Flex is perfect for this no-travel period

Between my husband and I, we already have several Chase cards. Mainly because we were always looking for cards that offered high welcome bonuses right off the bat so we could use them to book travel. For example, we've used Chase Ultimate Rewards points to book travel to Colorado, Hawaii, and Washington, DC — but obviously, travel hasn't been a priority over the last several months.

Enter the Chase Freedom card. It's actually no longer available to new applicants — it's been replaced by the new Chase Freedom Flex℠, which also has no annual fee and earns cash back in even more bonus categories. And now that we aren't traveling as much, there are several reasons I think the Freedom Flex is a great option.

Chase Freedom Flex℠

Chase Chase Freedom Flex℠

That's why the minimum spending requirement of $500 in the first three months from account opening is helpful. You'll earn $200 back if you meet this requirement, and it's a low bar to clear compared to other credit card offers. For example, the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is currently offering a record-high sign-up bonus of 80,000 points, but you have to spend $4,000 in the first three months from account opening to earn it.

We plan to use our card for groceries and thus should easily be able to hit the required amount in order to earn the $200 cash back reward. Because the Chase Freedom and Chase Freedom Flex℠ are cash-back cards, we can use the cash in the way that makes the most sense for our family at the time. 

Chase Chase Sapphire Preferred® CardCiti Citi® Double Cash CardChase Chase Sapphire Reserve®

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Please note: While the offers mentioned above are accurate at the time of publication, they’re subject to change at any time and may have changed, or may no longer be available.

Disclosure: This post is brought to you by the Personal Finance Insider team. We occasionally highlight financial products and services that can help you make smarter decisions with your money. We do not give investment advice or encourage you to adopt a certain investment strategy. What you decide to do with your money is up to you. If you take action based on one of our recommendations, we get a small share of the revenue from our commerce partners. This does not influence whether we feature a financial product or service. We operate independently from our advertising sales team.

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