Today is the first day of a new quarter and a new set of 5 percent categories for the Chase Freedom card (one of my favorite credit cards). Although the Chase Freedom is technically a cash back card, if you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred, Chase Sapphire Reserve, Ink Business Preferred or Ink Plus card you can transfer points from your Freedom account into one of those accounts and then can transfer those points to various Chase travel partners.
The Chase Freedom 5% categories for 2020 Q3 quarter (July 1, 2020 – September 30, 2020) are Amazon.com and Whole Foods Market.
Chase provides some clarification on what is included or excluded in each category.
• Amazon.com Purchases Include: Purchases made at Amazon.com including digital downloads, Amazon.com Gift Cards, Amazon.com Fresh orders, Amazon.com Prime subscriptions, and items sold by third party merchants through Amazon.com’s marketplace.
• Amazon.com Exclusions: Purchases from merchants using Amazon Pay
and purchases made at international Amazon retail sites (including but not limited to Amazon.ca, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, Amazon.fr, or Amazon.co.jp), or any other website operated by Amazon.
• Whole Foods Market Purchases Include: Purchases made at Whole Foods Market including physical Whole Foods Market store locations, 365 stores, and the website accessible at wholefoodsmarket.com.
• Whole Foods Market Exclusions: Purchases made at international Whole Foods Market sites;
Purchases of Whole Foods Market or Whole Foods Market 365 products or services through third-party sites such as Eventbrite, Instacart, Google Express and Shipt; Online purchases of event tickets, classes or gift cards redeemable at Whole Foods Market or Whole Foods Market 365 (including through buyatab.com); Purchases from certain third-party vendors operating at Whole Foods Market sites; Purchases of massage chair services made at Whole Foods Market sites and Purchases from Spa@Ink.
Click here for complete list of merchants.
The 5% only applies to the first $1,500 spent on combined purchases each quarter. This means if you spend $1,500 on a combination of Amazon.com and Whole Foods Market this quarter you will receive a total of 7,500 points (1,500 plus a bonus of 6,000 points).
How to Maximize the 5% Bonus
This is a pretty easy quarter to maximize the bonus as pretty much everyone shops at at Amazon.com. If you are not planning on spending a total of $1,500 on your Chase Freedom on Amazon.com and Whole Foods this quarter, you can maximize the bonus by buying gift cards.
Don’t Forget to Activate
Please note, that in order to earn the 5% you must activate the offer each quarter (by text, email or other methods). If you have a Chase Freedom and have signed up for email reminders you should have already received an email asking you to activate this quarter’s categories. If you have not yet activated the 5% for this quarter, you can register now or any time during the registration period and earn the full 5% for the entire quarter retroactively. Registration for the 3rd quarter of 2020 has already started and ends on September 14, 2020.
Overview of the Chase Freedom Credit Card
For anyone not familiar with this card, the Chase Freedom card is a great no annual fee card that earns you points that can be indirectly transferred to frequent flyer and hotel loyalty programs. Chase Freedom is technically a cash back card only and points earned using the Chase Freedom cannot be directly transferred to airlines and hotel programs. However, if you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred, Chase Sapphire Reserve, Ink Business Preferred or Ink Plus card you can transfer or combine your points from your Chase Freedom account to one of those cards and then from there to the various Ultimate Rewards travel partners. See related post How To Combine or Transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards Points Between Accounts.
While the Chase Freedom® normally offers 1% cash back on all purchases, every quarter there are certain bonus categories for which you can earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 spent in bonus categories each quarter. This means if you spend the full $1,500 each quarter in those 5 percent categories you can earn a total of 30,000 points a year (6,000 points + extra 24,000 bonus points).
The 5 cash back categories vary each year. You have to register each quarter for the bonus and then you can earn the 5% on up to $1,500 on purchases for that quarter.
Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate The Travel Sisters earn from qualifying purchases.