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The Chase Freedom is one of my favorite no annual fee credit cards, as it offers 5x points in rotating quarterly categories, for up to $1,500 of spend per quarter. Most people use this as a cashback card, meaning the 5x points really translates into 5% cashback in these categories.
The best part is that in conjunction with cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card or Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card, points earned on this card can be converted into “premium” Ultimate Rewards points, and be transferred to the Ultimate Rewards airline and hotel partners. Since I value one Ultimate Rewards point at significantly more than one cent, that’s my preferred use of those points.
Today is the start of a new quarter, which also means it’s the start of a new 5x points category.
Earn 5x points on dining starting today
Between July 1 and September 30, 2017, you can earn 5x points on the first $1,500 spent at restaurants and movie theaters when paying with the Chase Freedom.
To earn bonus points you need to register, though that’s super easy — just go to the registration page and enter your last name, billing zip code, and the last four digits on your card, and you’ll be registered.
While I think these categories are quite straightforward, here’s how Chase defines qualifying purchases:
- Merchants in the Restaurants category are merchants whose primary business is sit-down or eat-in dining, including fast food Restaurants as well as fine dining establishments. Please note that some merchants that sell food and drinks located within larger merchants such as sports stadiums, hotels and casinos, theme parks, grocery and department stores will not be included in this category unless the merchant has set up such purchases to be classified in a restaurant category.
- Merchants in the Movie Theaters category show motion pictures to an audience, including at drive-in theaters. Please note that theaters that provide live entertainment and merchants that sell and rent movies or provide movie subscription or streaming services are not included in this category. In addition, if you make purchases that are not processed by the merchant in the Movie Theaters category, the purchase will not qualify; for example food and beverage, or merchandise purchases.
I’m putting the Chase Freedom back at the front of my wallet today, and will keep spending on it until I reach the $1,500 cap.
Ordinarily some of the best cards for restaurant spend are as follows:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ Card — 3x points
- Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card — 2x points
- Citi Prestige® Card — 2x points
- Citi ThankYou Premier Card — 2x points
- Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express — 2x points
- Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card — 2x points
How to make Chase Freedom points even more valuable
Just to recap, you earn points on the Chase Freedom, and each point can be redeemed for one cent cashback.
However, if you have this card in addition to one of the cards that accrues “premium” Ultimate Rewards points, you can transfer these points to Ultimate Rewards. Cards that accrue “premium” Ultimate Rewards Cards include the:
So 5% cashback converts into 5x Ultimate Rewards points per dollar with one of the above cards.
Do you plan on maxing out the Chase Freedom third quarter bonus category?