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Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here – Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

One of the best ways out there to rack up bonus points on specific spending categories is with Chase Freedom’s quarterly rotating categories of merchants and retailers where cardholders earn 5 points per $1 up to a $1,500 quarterly cap.

 

Strategy

There is a bit of overlap in the bonus categories here with one of my other workhorse credit cards, the Sapphire Preferred, which earns a total of 2.14x Ultimate Rewards points per dollar at restaurants including the card’s 7% annual points dividend. Because the Freedom’s quarterly cap is $1,500 and the Sapphire Preferred’s bonus is unlimited (and it earns 3x points per $1 on First Fridays), I’m going to concentrate my bonus spending at Lowe’s this quarter. I have a lot of home improvement to do this spring, actually, so this really comes in handy for me – especially since right now, I can earn an extra 5x points per dollar for clicking through to Lowes.com via the Ultimate Rewards shopping portal.

Right now Lowe
Right now Lowe’s is offering 5x bonus points per $1 through Ultimate Rewards.

However, even if you don’t have $1,500 to spend at Lowe’s, you can always purchase something online at Lowes.com for in-store pickup and then go into the store to exchange it for retailer gift cards, like Starbucks and iTunes, since those are usually only sold in-store, and you can shift your spending that way. There are a lot of options!

If you haven’t activated your card for the 5x categories yet, you can activate your card the following ways:

  • Online: Visit chase.com/freedom.
  • Text Message: Sign up for Chase Freedom 5% Text Reminders at chase.com/freedom and you’ll get a text reminding you when it’s time to activate.
  • Email: Provide your email address at chase.com/freedom and they will send you an email when it’s time to activate.
  • Phone: Call the number on the back of your card and let an adviser activate your 5% cash back.
  • Chase location: Visit any Chase bank and see a personal banker.
For more on the Chase Freedom, read these previous posts:
Chase Freedom 2014 5x Bonus Categories Announced
Top 10 Cards In My Wallet And What I Use Each For
Maximizing Dining Purchases
What is the Best Credit Card for Home Improvement Expenses?
Chase Freedom®

It's a stellar cash back card on its own, but when paired with the Chase Sapphire Reserve or Chase Sapphire Preferred, the Freedom's 5x Category Bonuses let you rack up Chase Ultimate Rewards Points, transferrable to partners or redeemable via the portal.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 17.24-25.99%. Balance transfer fee is 3% of the amount transferred, $5 minimum
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate
  • Enjoy new 5% categories each quarter
  • Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - it's automatic
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open and there is no minimum to redeem for cash back.
  • Free credit score, updated weekly with Credit Journey℠
  • No annual fee
Intro APR on Purchases
0% Intro APR on Purchase for 15 months
Regular APR
17.24% - 25.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$0
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Know before you go.

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The best beginner points and miles card out there.
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

NEW INCREASED OFFER: 60,000 points! With great travel benefits, 2x points on travel & dining and a 60,000 point sign up bonus worth up to $1,200 in value, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is a great card for those looking to get into the points and miles game. Here are the top 5 reasons it should be in your wallet, or read our definitive review for more details.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred named "Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption" - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, June 2018
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
18.24% - 25.24% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent Credit

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.