The Chase Freedom card is one of my favorite no annual fee cards available. While this card is advertised as a cash back card, you can earn Ultimate Rewards points instead if you also have one of Chase’s premium cards like Sapphire or Ink. That turns this card into a 5x points card which can be much more valuable than 5% cash back.
The Freedom card earns 5x points (or 5% cash back) on rotating categories each quarter (up to $1,500) and 1x points (or 1% cash back) on all other purchases. You must activate the bonus categories each quarter to earn the bonus points. You have up until March 14, 2017 to activate to earn 5% cash back for all category purchases you’ve made for the whole quarter (up to $1,500) So if you activate any day before then, you’ll earn 5% cash back for category purchases dating back to January 1.
Freedom 2017 Q1 and Q2 Bonus Categories
Starting January 1, 2017 through March 31, 2017, your Freedom card will earn 5x points (or 5% cash back) at Gas Stations and Local Commuter Transportation including taxis, subways, local commuter buses and trains (does not include parking, tolls and Amtrak purchases)
From April 1, 2017- June 30, 2017 your Freedom card will earn 5x points (or 5% cash back) at Grocery Stores and Drug Stores (does not include Target or Walmart). This is the easiest category for me to max out this bonus since I spend a pretty penny at the grocery store each week! You can also purchase gift cards at both grocery and drug stores which helps to max out your bonus.
The Wrap Up
- If you don’t have this card and are interested in adding it, you can earn a 15,000 point bonus (or $150 cash back) with $500 in purchases in the first 3 months. There is no annual fee so this is one you can keep open indefinitely which helps boost your credit score!
- This is a different product from the Freedom Unlimited card which earns 1.5% cash back on all purchases. You can apply for both cards and receive the bonus on both too!
- This is advertised as a cash back card. But, if you also have a premium Ultimate Rewards earning card from Chase like the Sapphire or Ink you can transfer these points into Ultimate Rewards points instead of getting cash back. This will get you more value for your points
- Activate your bonus for Q1 now so you can start earning 5x points (or 5% cash back) on Gas Stations and Local Commuter Transportation (up to $1,500) starting January 1, 2017
- The 5x bonus is good on your first $1,500 in purchases in the specified category. If you max out the bonus you will earn an extra 6,000 points or $60 cash back each quarter!