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Since 2015 is coming to an end, Chase recently announced the 2016 rotating categories for the Chase Freedom card. This means you’ll earn 5x points on your purchase (up to $1,500 per quarter) instead of the regular 1x point per dollar spent. The 2016 categories include:
For the first quarter of 2016, you’ll earn 5x points at gas stations and local commuter transportation spend. This is a change from the past as commuter transportation purchases has never been a bonus. This means you’ll earn 5x points on your train ride to work (not Amtrak). Pretty good for those that work in a city with train transportation. And for those that drive to work, you’ll earn 5x points at gas stations – so a win-win for all.
For the second quarter, you’ll get 5x points at grocery stores which is always a good bonus. If you won’t spend the full $1,500 within the quarter, you can always purchase gift cards to use throughout the year (note that Walmart and Target grocery stores are not eligible).
For the third quarter there will definitely be a bonus for dinning out and then some other bonus which is still TBD. And fourth quarter is still TBD, but I assume some major merchants, like Amazon, Zappos, Kohls, etc. or maybe even all department stores will be part of the bonus (at least that’s what we’ve seen in the past).
For every quarter that you spend the maximum of $1,500, you’ll receive 7,500 points. You can either redeem those Chase points for $75 cash back, or if you have a premier Chase Ultimate Rewards credit card (Chase Ink Bold, Chase Ink Plus, Chase Sapphire Preferred) transfer the points to one of those accounts and then either use them at the Chase travel portal or transfer them to a partner loyalty program.
Remember, you must always activate your 5x point bonus every quarter.
Thanks to Mommy Points for letting me know of this announcement!