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Yesterday Chase Freedom announced the 5% cash back categories for 2013 on their Facebook page.
These bonuses are valid for the Chase Freedom®, which has no annual fee. You can earn the 5% bonus for up to $1,500 of spend per quarter.
If you plan your spend strategically it really shouldn’t be too tough to max out these categories (especially since drug stores and gas stations often sell gift cards). I think I’m the only person left in this country that doesn’t use Amazon religiously, so I’m not sure if the fourth quarter will work great for me, but other than that I’m good to go.
While the Chase Freedom card accruex cash back, if you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, Ink Plus® Business Credit Card, or Ink Bold® Business Charge Card, you can convert those “cash back points” into Ultimate Rewards points. That means you’d be earning 5x points per dollar spent with United or Hyatt, for example.
There’s a limit of earning the bonus on $1,500 of spend per quarter, so you’re looking at an easy 7,500 Ultimate Rewards points per quarter, or 30,000 Ultimate Rewards points per year.
Believe it or not I actually don’t have the Chase Freedom card yet, even though it’s a no brainer given that it doesn’t have an annual fee. The issue is that Chase has had so many great card offers lately that I’ve just been going for the best bonuses rather than looking at which card will help me maximize long term, everyday spend. I’ll be applying for it in my next cycle, and it’s one of those cards that’s a keeper.