How Chase Freedom Flex cardholders can earn up to 9% cash back this quarter – The Points Guy


Chase Freedom Flex promotion this quarter can get you 5% cash back on your top spend category – The Points Guy


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Source: thepointsguy.com

[In Branch]Chase Freedom Flex/Freedom Unlimited: $250 Bonus + 5% Back On Groceries (Up To $12k) First Year

The Offer

No direct link to offer. Available in branch only

  • Chase is offering an additional bonus on the Chase Freedom Flex and Chase Freedom Unlimited cards. You can currently get the standard $250 sign up bonus after $500 in spend and in additional the card will earn 5% cashback on all grocery store purchases in the first year up to $12,000 in spend

Card Details

Freedom Flex

  • No annual fee
  • Card earns the following points rates:
    • 5% on rotating Quarterly Categories on up to $1,500 in total purchases (e.g. Q4 2020 will be PayPal and Walmart)
    • 5% on Travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards
    • 3% on Dining 
    • 3% on Drugstore 
    • 5% on Lyft through March 2022
    • 1% unlimited cash back 

Freedom Unlimited

  • No annual fee
  • Card earns 1.5% cash back on all purchases

The Fine Print

Freedom:

  • 5% Back in the grocery store category (excluding Walmart and Target) until the earlier of the end of your first 12 months or first $12,000 spent: You’ll earn 5% Cash Back rewards total for each $1 spent on purchases in the grocery store category (excluding Walmart and Target) made within your first 12 months from account opening, or until you reach $12,000 in grocery store purchases, whichever occurs first (4% additional Cash Back rewards on top of the 1% Cash Back rewards earned on each purchase). The additional 4% Cash Back rewards will appear on your billing statement in a separate line from the base 1% Cash Back rewards.

Freedom Unlimited:

  • 5% Cash Back in the grocery store category (excluding Walmart and Target) until the earlier of the end of your first 12 months or first $12,000 spent: You’ll earn 5% Cash Back rewards total for each $1 spent on purchases in the grocery store category (excluding Walmart and Target) made within your first 12 months from account opening, or until you reach $12,000 in grocery store purchases, whichever occurs first (3.5% additional Cash Back rewards on top of the 1.5% Cash Back rewards earned on each purchase). The additional 3.5% Cash Back rewards will appear on your billing statement in a separate line from the base 1.5% Cash Back rewards.

Our Verdict

Same as the $200 offer available online, this is just an extra $50 when applying in branch. Definitely worth doing if you were already considering the $200 offer. Will add this to our list of the best credit card bonuses. For more details on this offer I’d recommend reading the original $200 offer post.

Hat tip to Faust_XX

Source: doctorofcredit.com

Q4 2021 5% Quarterly Categories: Activate, Offers & Suggestions (Freedom/Flex, Discover, Dividend, Cash+ & more)

It’s now possible to activate/enroll all 5% category credit cards for the fourth quarter of 2021, including the Chase Freedom, Chase Freedom Flex, Discover IT, Citi Dividend, US Bank Cash+ and a few others. In this post we’ll provide the activation link for each card and links to track your spend, along with strategies to help increase spend in these categories.

Dates: October 1st – December 31, 2021. Store purchases can usually be done until the last minute. Online purchases should be given a buffer zone of a day or two.

Chase Freedom – PayPal, Walmart

Activation Link / FAQ / Sample Stores & Exclusions / Our original post

With your Freedom and Freedom Flex cards, earn 5% back this quarter on up to $1,500 in spend at purchases paid via PayPal and on purchases made at Walmart.

  • PayPal Purchases – I love the PayPal category since it’s pretty easy to use at thousands of online merchants, tax payments, charities, etc. (Should work in conjunction with PayPal Key as well.) “Please note, Friends and Family or Person-to-Person (P2P) transactions made with your Chase Freedom card on PayPal may be prohibited or not eligible for 5%.”
  • Walmart – Works at Walmart stores and Walmart.com and Walmart gas stations. Walmart stores also sell Visa gift cards and other gift cards as well.

Tip: Click this link (login required) to check how far you are along the $1,500.

Discover – Amazon, Walmart.com, Target.com

Activation Link / Our original post

With your Discover card, earn 5% back this quarter on up to $1,500 in purchases at Amazon.com, Walmart.com, and Target.com.

  • Amazon.com – not very useful for someone who has one of the Amazon 5% credit cards, but could be useful to those that don’t.
  • Walmart.com – if you maxed out your Chase Freedom, this is another option.
  • Target.com – not too useful for someone who has the Target REDcard which always earns 5% back, but could be useful to those that don’t. (Also useful for when Target runs their gift card sale since Target gift cards don’t get the 5% back REDcard.)

Activate to earn 5% Cashback Bonus at Amazon.com, Walmart.com and Target.com from 10/1/21 (or the date on which you activate 5%, whichever is later) through 12/31/21, on up to $1,500 in purchases. Amazon.com purchases include those made through the Amazon.com checkout, including digital downloads, Amazon.com gift cards, Amazon Fresh orders, Amazon Local Deals, Amazon Prime subscriptions and items sold by third party merchants through Amazon.com’s marketplace. Purchases also include those made in-store at Amazon Go, Amazon Bookstore, and Amazon 4-Star. Walmart.com purchases include only those made at Walmart.com and when shopping through the Walmart app (including Grocery Pick Up and Delivery). Purchases made through affiliates of Walmart.com are not part of this promotion. Target.com purchases include only purchases made online at Target.com or through the Target app. Purchases made through affiliates of Target.com are not part of this promotion, including, but not limited to, targetoptical.com and targetphoto.com. 

Tip: Login, then click this link to see you how far along the $1,500 you are.

Citi Dividend – Restaurants, Best Buy

Landing Page | Our Original Post

With your Dividend card, earn 5% back this quarter at Restaurants and Best Buy. Citi is different than the other cards in that you have a $6,000 annual cap rather than a $1,500 quarterly cap. Thus, you can get 5% back on up to $6,000 in this quarter, you can save the entire amount for a different quarter, or you can use part up each quarter. Some people might have already maxed this out in Q2 2021 on grocery stores and drugstores.

  • Restaurants – always a useful category
  • Best Buy – based on my prior experience, this should work for Bestbuy.com purchases too.

US Bank Cash+/Elan – Select your Categories

Activation link | Merchant List | Our Original Post

U.S. Bank Cash+ and Elan Max offer 5% cash back in two categories, up to $2,000 combined total per quarter. Keep in mind that Car Rentals was recently replaced with TV, Internet, and Streaming Services.

Here are the current options:

  • TV, Internet, and Streaming Services
  • Home utilities
  • Select clothing stores
  • Cell phone providers
  • Electronic Stores
  • Gyms/Fitness
  • Fast food
  • Ground Transportation
  • Sporting goods
  • Department Stores
  • Furniture Stores
  • Movie theaters

Tip: Login here, then scroll down and click on the red “View Your Cash+ History” button.

Bank of America Cash Rewards

Our Original Post

The Cash Rewards card from Bank of America offers 3% back on one selected category, up to $2,500 per quarter. If you don’t select anything it defaults to gas. Once you selected a category for one quarter, that remains your category in the future unless you change it. Each calendar month you can change it if you’d like, but you’re always limited to $2,500 for the entire quarter.

  • Gas (default)
  • Online Shopping
  • Dining
  • Travel
  • Drug Stores
  • Home Improvement/Furnishings

This category is especially lucrative for those who have Preferred Rewards status with Bank of America which can get you 5.25% back on one of these categories at the higher relationship level.

Lots of useful categories here. Important note: the Cash Rewards card also offers 2% back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs up to $2,500 per quarter, and that $2,500 limit combines with the Category Selection limit. After spending $2,500, you’ll earn 1% back on everything.

Other Cards with 5% Category

ABOC – Discontinued

Since August 27, 2021, the ABOC Platinum rewards card has moved to a new rewards provider and no longer offers the quarterly 5x categories.

Nusenda FCU – Restaurants, Hotels, Airfare

Landing Page | Our Original Post

  • Earn 5% this quarter on up to $1,500 in purchases at restaurants, hotels, and airfare.

Affinity FCU – Supermarkets, Amazon, Discount Stores

Landing Page | Our Original Post

  • Earn 5% this quarter on purchases at Supermarkets, Amazon, and Discount Stores on up to $3,500 in purchases.

The 5x is on top of regular earn for a total of 6x or 7x, depending on the card. Amazon works out to 10%, apparently.

Vantage West [AZ] – Select your Category

Landing Page | Our Original Post

Get 5x points on the category of your choice, up to $1,500 per quarter. Eligible categories:

  • Travel
  • Restaurants
  • Utilities [water, cell, electric, etc.]
  • In-Store Wholesale Purchases [Costco, Sam’s Club, etc.]
  • Department Stores
  • Hardware & Home Improvement Stores
  • Charitable Organizations
  • Pharmacies & Drug Stores
  • Amazon.com

Source: doctorofcredit.com

Chase Freedom Flex vs. Chase Freedom Unlimited

The Chase Freedom Flex℠, or the Chase Freedom Unlimited®? The card names sound similar, and, at a glance, the rewards look alike, too.

But not so fast: Although these two Chase cards have a lot in common, they feature a few key differences to keep in mind when deciding which is the best fit for you.

Both the Chase Freedom Flex and Chase Freedom Unlimited offer hefty sign-up bonuses, along with bonus cash back on dining and drugstore purchases, as well as travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards.

The main difference is in the highlights of their rewards structures: The Freedom Flex card offers 5% cash back on rotating quarterly categories, while the Chase Freedom Unlimited offers a flat-rate 1.5% cash back on everything.

Read on to get a rundown of the pros and cons of each card, as well as which card is best suited for you, based on your spending habits.

Chase Freedom Flex vs. Chase Freedom Unlimited

Chase Freedom Flex℠
Chase Freedom Flex℠
Chase Freedom Unlimited®
Chase Freedom Unlimited®
Rewards rate
  • 5% rotating quarterly categories (upon enrollment, on up to $1,500 in spending per quarter, then 1%)
  • 5% cash back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • 5% cash back on Lyft purchases through March 2022
  • 3% cash back on dining
  • 3% cash back on drugstore purchases
  • 1% cash back on other purchases
  • 5% cash back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • 5% cash back on Lyft purchases through March 2022
  • 3% cash back on dining
  • 3% cash back on drugstore purchases
  • 1.5% cash back on other purchases
Sign-up bonus
  • $200 if you spend $500 in first 3 months
  • 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target or Walmart purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year
  • $200 if you spend $500 in first 3 months
  • 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target or Walmart purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year
Annual fee $0 $0
Estimated ongoing yearly rewards value ($1,325 monthly spend) $493 $353
Pros
  • No annual fee
  • High rewards rate on both specific categories year-round and on rotating categories
  • Large sign-up bonus
  • Can transfer rewards to other Chase cards
  • No annual fee
  • Large sign-up bonus
  • Can transfer rewards to other Chase cards
Cons
  • Requires some maintenance
  • Can be difficult to max out rotating categories (may not always align with spending)
  • Low cash back rate on general purchases
  • Not the highest rate available on general purchases
Who should get this card?
  • Rewards maximizers
  • People who want to collect Ultimate Rewards points
  • People who like cash back variety
  • People who want to earn Ultimate Rewards points without paying an annual fee
  • People who want to keep it simple
  • People who want to earn bonus cash back in both specific categories and general purchases
  • People who want to earn Ultimate Rewards points without paying an annual fee

Chase Freedom Flex overview

The Chase Freedom Flex card offers a combination of year-round and quarterly rotating bonus cash back categories. Each quarter, you can enroll in a new bonus category from the Chase cash back calendar and earn 5% back on the first $1,500 you spend in that category (then 1% back after you reach the $1,500 threshold).

Throughout the year, you’ll also get 5% back on all travel booked through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, 5% cash back on Lyft purchases through March 2022, 3% back on dining and drugstore purchases and 1% back on all other purchases.

Plus, the card is currently offering a $200 bonus for spending $500 in the first three months, as well as 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target or Walmart purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.

Upsides: The opportunity to earn bonus cash back in select categories year-round and in a variety of categories each quarter.

Downsides: The complex rewards program. To get the most out of the card, cardholders must track their spending, since the 5% rate applies only to certain categories that rotate frequently and is limited to $1,500 per quarter.

Furthermore, cardholders must log in to their Chase accounts and activate their rewards category by the deadline each quarter to earn the 5% rate. For example, to earn 5% cash back during the third quarter of 2021 (on grocery stores and select streaming services), you must activate the category by Aug. 14, 2021.

Chase 5% cash back calendar 2021

Winter Spring Summer Holiday
January – March April – June July – September October – December
  • Select streaming services
  • Phone, cable and internet services
  • Wholesale clubs
  • Home improvement stores
  • Gas stations
  • Grocery stores (excluding Walmart and Target)
  • Select streaming services
TBA

Chase Freedom Unlimited overview

Like the Freedom Flex, the Freedom Unlimited earns bonus cash back on Ultimate Rewards travel (5% back) and dining and drugstore purchases (3% back), plus Lyft purchases through March 2022 (5%). However, instead of rotating cash back categories, the Freedom Unlimited offers 1.5% cash back on general purchases.

There’s also no annual fee, and no interest on purchases for 15 months from account opening (after which a variable APR of 14.99% to 23.74% applies). The card is currently offering a $200 bonus for spending $500 in the first three months, as well as 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target or Walmart purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.

Upsides: The Freedom Unlimited card offers a straightforward rewards program that allows cardholders to earn at least 1.5% on every purchase they make – with no earning caps or rotating categories. Additionally, you can earn 5% on grocery store purchases for the first year (on up to $12,000 spent; doesn’t include Target or Walmart groceries).

Downsides: Although 1.5% cash back is a substantial amount to earn on general purchases, it’s not the highest rate out there.

Best for someone who wants a simple cash back credit card: Chase Freedom Unlimited

Since the Chase Freedom Unlimited card offers a generous cash back rate on general purchases, it makes for a great all-purpose cash back card.

Cardholders automatically receive 1.5% cash back on general purchases, with no rotating categories and no cap on the amount of rewards they can earn. For those who don’t want to have to deal with activating rewards categories each quarter, this card is ideal.

Taking into account the card’s bonus categories of Ultimate Rewards travel, dining and drugstore purchases, we estimate that it carries an average rewards rate of just over 2.22% back based on typical consumer spending. As you can see from the table below, you stand to earn a fair amount of cash back each year by using the Chase Freedom Unlimited card for every purchase. We estimate that the average cardholder who spends around $1,325 on the card per month can earn around $353 in cash back per year.

If your goal is to earn the most rewards possible from your everyday spending, however, you have better options. Read on to see how you can maximize your rewards.

Scenario 1: Use Chase Freedom Unlimited for every purchase ($1,325 average monthly spend)

Average rewards rate Estimated cash back
2.22% $353

Best for someone who wants to maximize rewards: Chase Freedom Flex

For those who have the time and know-how to manage rewards categories, the Chase Freedom Flex card offers the opportunity to earn a higher rewards rate on their spending.

In addition to bonus cash back in the year-round categories of Ultimate Rewards travel, dining and drugstore purchases, cardholders receive 5% cash back in lucrative rotating categories, such as grocery stores, gas stations, online shopping and wholesale clubs.

For a cardholder who spends an average amount in the Freedom Flex’s year-round categories, we estimate that it offers a 1.72% average earning rate. This is less than the Freedom Unlimited’s 2.22% average cash back rate, but the card’s rotating cash back categories also need to be considered.

If you max out these categories each quarter, you’ll earn at least $300 in cash back per year. Combined with the card’s year-round bonus categories, that gives you an average annual total of around $493, far exceeding the amount the average user would earn with the Chase Freedom Unlimited card.

Keep in mind, however, that it may be difficult to max out every quarterly bonus category. It all comes down to how well a given category lines up with your spending and how much effort you’re willing to put into planning your purchases to maximize each category.

Scenario 2: Maximize Freedom Flex bonus categories ($1,500 quarterly spend) and spend an average amount in year-round bonus categories (total annual spend $15,900)

Quarterly bonus cash back category earnings Average rewards rate in year-round bonus categories Cash back
5% back on your first $1,500 in spending = $75 per quarter ($300 per year) 1.72% $493

Best for someone who wants to collect Chase Ultimate Rewards points: Both

Since the Freedom Flex and Freedom Unlimited carry the same rewards rate on Ultimate Rewards travel, dining and drugstore purchases, you may feel like you need to choose just one of the cards. But it doesn’t have to be “either/or.” The ideal answer to “which of these cards should I get” can be “both.”

You can use either card to cover Ultimate Rewards travel, dining and drugstore purchases, but to maximize your rewards earnings, use the Freedom Flex card to make purchases in the 5% cash back category and the Freedom Unlimited card to earn 1.5% back on general purchases.

You can also earn $400 in sign-up bonuses within the first year by signing up for both cards and spending $500 on each within the first three months.

Even better, you can pair the Chase Freedom cards with other Chase cards. The secret sauce in this scenario is a Chase Sapphire card (either the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card or the Chase Sapphire Reserve card), which allow points transfers from other Chase Ultimate Rewards cards, including the Chase Freedom cards.

By juggling the Chase Freedom cards with a Chase Sapphire card, you can earn the highest rate on Ultimate Rewards points:

  • 10X on hotels and rental cars through Ultimate Rewards with the Sapphire Reserve
  • 5X on Ultimate Rewards travel with either Freedom card or the Sapphire Preferred and on Ultimate Rewards air travel with the Sapphire Reserve
  • 5X on rotating quarterly categories with the Freedom Flex
  • 3X on dining and drugstore purchases with either Freedom card
  • 3X on select streaming services and online grocery purchases (excludes Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs) if you have the Sapphire Preferred
  • 2X or 3X respectively on general travel with the Sapphire Preferred and Reserve cards
  • 1.5X on other spending

When it comes to travel rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards points are extremely valuable because of the large array of redemption options: You can redeem points for statement credits for travel purchased from outside sources, for travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal (for a 25% to 50% increase in point value depending which card you use) or transfer points at a 1:1 rate to many of Chase’s travel partners.

The table below shows the value of combining the Chase Freedom Flex, Chase Freedom Unlimited and Chase Sapphire Reserve cards. By leveraging the bonus categories on each card, a cardholder who manages to max out the 5% quarterly bonus categories and spends an average amount in other categories can earn around 52,869 Ultimate Rewards points per year.

This comes to an impressive $528 in cash back. But if you transfer the points to Chase’s travel partners, you make out even better. Due to the high value of points on partners such as United and Southwest, those same Ultimate Rewards points can get you $750 to $800 more worth of airfare, or even more if you know the ins and outs of airline loyalty programs.

Scenario 3: Combine three Ultimate Rewards cards

Chase Freedom Flex + Chase Freedom Unlimited + Chase Sapphire Reserve Average rewards rate Estimated points/year Sample redemptions: Estimated value
  • 10% back on hotels and rental cars through Ultimate Rewards (with the Sapphire Reserve)
  • 5% back in rotating categories (maxed out categories, with Chase Freedom)
  • 5% back on other Ultimate Rewards travel (with any card)
  • 3% back on dining and drugstore purchases (with either Freedom card)
  • 1.5% back on other purchases (with Chase Freedom Unlimited card)
2.31% 52,869
  • Statement credit: $528
  • Ultimate Rewards travel (with Sapphire Reserve): $792
  • Southwest Airlines transfer: $844
  • United Airlines transfer: $792

Bottom line

The Chase Freedom Flex and Freedom Unlimited cards are both great cash back cards that appeal to different audiences.

The Freedom Flex card is a great option for cardholders who want to maximize their rewards and the Freedom Unlimited card is a great way to go if you want to keep things simple.

If , however, you like travel rewards and you want to get the most bang for your buck, you should really consider applying for a trio of Ultimate Rewards cards.

The editorial content below is based solely on the objective assessment of our writers and is not driven by advertising dollars. However, we do receive compensation when you click on links to products from our partners. Learn more about our advertising policy

Editorial Disclaimer

The editorial content on this page is based solely on the objective assessment of our writers and is not driven by advertising dollars. It has not been provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. However, we may receive compensation when you click on links to products from our partners.

Source: creditcards.com

Q2 2021 5% Quarterly Categories: Activate, Offers & Suggestions (Freedom/Flex, Discover, Dividend, Cash+ & more)

Update 3/31/21: Added FCU categories.

It’s now possible to activate/enroll all 5% category credit cards for the second quarter of 2021, including the Chase Freedom, Chase Freedom Flex, Discover IT, Citi Dividend, US Bank Cash+ and a few others. In this post we’ll provide the activation link for each card and links to track your spend, along with strategies to help increase spend in these categories.

Dates: April 1st – June 30, 2021. Store purchases can usually be done until the last minute. Online purchases should be given a buffer zone of a day or two.

Chase Freedom – Gas, Home Improvement

Activation Link / FAQ / Sample Stores & Exclusions / Our original post

With your Freedom and Freedom Flex cards, earn 5% back this quarter on up to $1,500 in spend at gas stations and home improvement stores.

  • Gas Stations – Includes Exxon, Shell, BP, 7-Eleven, Quiktrip, Raceway, Royal Farms and many others; see a long list of examples here. Looks like many convenience stores will count for this, and they might sell gift cards too; do a small test to be sure.
  • Home Improvement Stores – Includes Lowes, Home Depot and many others; see a long list of examples here. Online purchases should work as well.

Tip: Click this link (login required) to check how far you are along the $1,500.

Discover – Gas, Wholesale Clubs, Streaming Services

Activation Link / Our original post

With your Discover card, earn 5% back this quarter on up to $1,500 in purchases at Gas Stations, Wholesale Clubs, and Streaming Services.

  • Gas Stations – Works for pump and inside payments which makes it easier to use as it may work for purchases from the convenience store at a gas station (perhaps for a gift card purchase there as well).
  • Wholesale Clubs – Probably includes online wholesale club purchases too. Costco does not accept Discover in-club, but you should be able to buy a Costco Cash card online with a Discover card and use it that way.
  • Streaming Services – includes only the following U.S. streaming subscriptions: Apple Music, Apple TV+, AT&T TV Now, BET+, CBS All Access, DAZN, Disney +, ESPN+, Fubo TV, Google Play Movies & TV, HBO Max, Hulu, Netflix, Pandora, Philo, Peacock TV, Showtime, Sirius XM, Starz, Sling, Spotify, Vudu, YouTube TV.

Activate to earn 5% Cashback Bonus at Gas Stations (stand-alone), Wholesale Clubs and Select Streaming Services from 4/1/21 (or the date on which you activate 5%, whichever is later) through 6/30/21, on up to $1,500 in purchases. Purchases made at Gas Stations include only merchants in the category that sell automotive gasoline that can be paid for either at the pump or inside the station. Gas Stations affiliated with supermarkets and supercenters may not be eligible. Check with your Wholesale Clubs to make sure your Discover card is accepted. Purchases of affiliated Wholesale Club services, such as delivery services, travel and cell phone purchases, may not be eligible in this category. Individual merchants and stand-alone stores within physical Wholesale club locations, or online, may not be eligible in this category. Select Streaming Services purchases include only the following select U.S. streaming subscriptions: Apple Music, Apple TV+, AT&T TV Now, BET+, CBS All Access, DAZN, Disney +, ESPN+, Fubo TV, Google Play Movies & TV, HBO Max, Hulu, Netflix, Pandora, Philo, Peacock TV, Showtime, Sirius XM, Starz, Sling, Spotify, Vudu, YouTube TV. If your subscription is bundled with another product or service, billed by a third party (such as a digital platform, a cable or satellite provider, telecommunications, internet provider or a car manufacturer), the purchase may not be eligible in this category. Add-ons associated with Select Streaming Services may not qualify for this promotion if they are not listed, billed in a bundle, separately or through a third party. Listed merchants are in no way sponsoring or affiliated with this program.

Tip: Login, then click this link to see you how far along the $1,500 you are.

Citi Dividend – Supermarket, Drugstores

Landing Page | Our Original Post

With your Dividend card, earn 5% back this quarter at Supermarkets and Drugstores. Citi is different than the other cards in that you have a $6,000 annual cap rather than a $1,500 quarterly cap. Thus, you can get 5% back on up to $6,000 in this quarter, you can save the entire amount for a different quarter, or you can use part up each quarter. A lot of people will max out their full year on this quarter given how easy it is to spend at grocery stores and drugstores.

  • Supermarkets – groceries are always a useful category. Plus, you can buy gift cards in many supermarkets as well.
  • Drugstores – drugstores often sell a wide variety of gift cards which makes the category easy to use.

US Bank Cash+/Elan – Select your Categories

Activation link | Merchant List | Our Original Post

U.S. Bank Cash+ and Elan Max offer 5% cash back in two categories, up to $2,000 combined total per quarter. Keep in mind that Car Rentals was recently replaced with TV, Internet, and Streaming Services.

Here are the current options:

  • TV, Internet, and Streaming Services
  • Home utilities
  • Select clothing stores
  • Cell phone providers
  • Electronic Stores
  • Gyms/Fitness
  • Fast food
  • Ground Transportation
  • Sporting goods
  • Department Stores
  • Furniture Stores
  • Movie theaters

Tip: Login here, then scroll down and click on the red “View Your Cash+ History” button.

Bank of America Cash Rewards

Our Original Post

The Cash Rewards card from Bank of America offers 3% back on one selected category, up to $2,500 per quarter. If you don’t select anything it defaults to gas. Once you selected a category for one quarter, that remains your category in the future unless you change it. Each calendar month you can change it if you’d like, but you’re always limited to $2,500 for the entire quarter.

  • Gas (default)
  • Online Shopping
  • Dining
  • Travel
  • Drug Stores
  • Home Improvement/Furnishings

This category is especially lucrative for those who have Preferred Rewards status with Bank of America which can get you 5.25% back on one of these categories at the higher relationship level.

Lots of useful categories here. Important note: the Cash Rewards card also offers 2% back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs up to $2,500 per quarter, and that $2,500 limit combines with the Category Selection limit. After spending $2,500, you’ll earn 1% back on everything.

Other Cards with 5% Category

ABOC – Home Improvement, Gardening, Select Online Retailers

Registration Link | Our Original Post

  • Earn 5x points on qualifying home improvement, gardening, and selected online retailers. Must have a registered account at abocrewards.com.

Nusenda FCU – Restaurants, Home Improvement, Movies

Landing Page | Our Original Post

  • Earn 5% this quarter on Restaurants, Home Improvement stores, and Movies on up to $1,500 in purchases.

Affinity FCU – Add Me

Landing Page | Our Original Post

  • Earn 5% this quarter on purchases at Clothing & Accessories, Home Improvement/Supplies, Drug Stores

The 5x is on top of regular earn for a total of 6x or 7x, depending on the card. There also does not appear to be any limit.

Vantage West [AZ] – Select your Category

Landing Page | Our Original Post

Get 5x points on the category of your choice, up to $1,500 per quarter. Eligible categories:

  • Travel
  • Restaurants
  • Utilities [water, cell, electric, etc.]
  • In-Store Wholesale Purchases [Costco, Sam’s Club, etc.]
  • Department Stores
  • Hardware & Home Improvement Stores
  • Charitable Organizations
  • Pharmacies & Drug Stores
  • Amazon.com

Source: doctorofcredit.com