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The first quarter of 2019 is slowly drawing to an end and, as another quarter starts up in a couple of weeks, Chase has released details of the new bonus categories which will offer Chase Freedom credit card holders the chance to earn 5% cash back in the second quarter of 2019.
In Q1 the Chase Freedom card has been allowing users to earn 5% cashback (or 5 Ultimate Rewards Points/dollar if they also have a Sapphire branded Chase card) on the first $1,500 spent at gas stations, at drugstores and on tolls and, with gas being a major cost for a lot of people and with drugstores selling gift cards galore, it probably hasn’t been all that hard for most people to max out their bonus earnings.
If you haven’t already registered for the Q1 bonuses then today is your last day to do so (here’s a link to the registration page)
Now Chase has announced that, between 1 April and 30 June 2019, Chase Freedom credit card holders will be able to earn 5% cash back (or 5 Ultimate Rewards points per dollar if they also hold a Chase Sapphire card) when spending in these two categories:
- Grocery Stores
- Home Improvement
Registration for the 2Q quarterly bonuses will open tomorrow (15 March 2019)
I’m pleased to see grocery stores as a bonus category as although there are a number of other cards that offer good bonuses for grocery spending none of those cards earns Chase Ultimate rewards points…and that’s one my two favorite currencies to collect.
5% cash back (or 5 UR points) for home improvement purchases will be nice for anyone who actually needs to do some home improvements but, while it’s true to say that no other credit card offers a bonus for spending at home improvement stores (at least I can’t think of one), this isn’t a particularly great option for two reasons:
(a) It’s a bit of niche category and not one that will necessarily help a lot of people max out their bonus earnings.
(b) If you’re not worried about having to use the purchase protection benefits that come with a lot of credit cards you can buy gift cards for home improvement stores at most large grocery stores (so this isn’t really a second category for a lot of people) and at most office stores (where some credit cards already offer very good spending bonuses).
Think You Can’t Max This Out?
If you’re struggling to spend $1,500 in the two categories on offer this quarter consider bringing forward some spending.
Most big grocery stores will sell you gift cards to numerous eateries, shops and stores and, as long as these are establishments you would normally frequent, these can be used to increase your Freedom Card spending during the quarter without having you spend funds you wouldn’t otherwise have spent.
Overall this a bit of a mediocre offering from Chase this quarter. We only have two bonus categories to work with (we’ve had 3 bonus categories for most of the recent quarters) and one of them is very niche and of limited use.
Still, with my local grocery stores selling gift cards for a lot of retailers I frequent, I should be able to hit the $1,500 spending target with relative ease.
How will these bonus categories work for you and what do you think of them?