Chase Freedom First Quarter 2014 Bonus Categories Are Live!

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Happy New Year, everybody! A new year means a new quarter so that just means that the counter is set to zero and we are entitled to 5x Ultimate Rewards points on up to $1,500 in spend this quarter on gas stations, Starbucks, and movie theaters.


Bonuses are eligible for purchases in the three categories between January 1, 2014 and March 31, 2014.

Read my previous post for some tips on how to maximize this quarter. I’ll definitely be trying to max out the bonus since both United and Hyatt are increasing their award redemptions.

Reminders Before the End of 2013

As we come to the end of the year/quarter, there are several bonuses and promotions wrapping up. Tuesday, December 31st will be the drop dead date.

Chase Freedom 4th Quarter Bonus

5x Ultimate Rewards points on and select department stores. This was an easy set of categories to rack up $1,500 worth of spend. If you haven’t, buy some Amazon e-gift cards for yourself for future use!

Discover IT 4th Quarter Bonus

The Discover IT card is basically their answer to the Chase Freedom, with rotating category bonuses every quarter. This quarter’s was “online purchases” which made it really easy with all the online shopping for the holidays + the points-manufacturing schemes like Amazon Payments.

American Express Membership Rewards British Airways Transfer Bonus

Get 20% more Avios bonus will end on Tuesday as well. Obviously, don’t transfer points without an award in your sights. The only exception to that rule is when you plan on cancelling a card. We’ll be cancelling Joann’s Platinum card so instead of downgrading or straight up losing the points, we’d rather get a transfer bonus on points we’ll be sure to use.

Cathay Pacific’s Last London 747 Flight

Gary writes about Cathay’s last London Boeing 747 flight, as these Queens of the Sky are being retired from service. As of now, there are 6 First Class award seats available! That’s the kind of New Year’s Party I could get into. You can use the aforementioned Amex-Avios transfer bonus to redeem for this momentous occasion. It will cost you 90K Avios + $456.

American Express Platinum $200 Airline Credit

Don’t forget that one major perk of being an Amex Platinum cardholder is a $200 airline credit every calendar year. It’s meant for incidentals like baggage fees or buy-on-board food, but it absolutely works when buying gift cards to your designated airline. I recently purchased a $200 American Airlines gift card and was reimbursed in 2 days.

American Express Sync Promotions

Amex has had some great promotions going throughout the year that are scheduled to end on the 31st. My favorite was the Amazon one, just in time for the holidays. Deals We Like has compiled a comprehensive list of the promotions along with their expiration dates. Be sure to take advantage of them if they fit your needs!

Although most of the Sync promotions are due to end on the 31st, my guess is that they’ll be re-upped for 2014.

Other Things To Remember

In 2013, the year of the devaluation, be cognizant of the upcoming changes. Hyatt is the first to change in the new year, making several changes to their award chart that go into effect on January 7, 2014.  United’s new, more expensive award charts will go into effect February 1, 2014.

All Chase Freedom 2014 Bonus Categories Announced

UPDATE: Registration is now live!

Chase has announced the entire Chase Freedom 2014 bonus categories.

chase freedom 2014

Q1: January 1 – March 31, 2014

  • Gas stations
  • Movie theaters
  • Starbucks

Q1: April 1 – June 30, 2014

  • Restaurants
  • Lowe’s

Q3: July 1 – September 30, 2014

  • Gas stations
  • Kohl’s

Q4: October 1 – December 31, 2014

Some Thoughts

It seems like Chase is really continuing development of their relationships with specifics stores/brands. Lowe’s, Kohl’s, and Amazon are back once again., another powerhouse in the ecommerce world, has been added to the Q4 holiday mix.

Overall, the 2014 bonus categories are basically the same. We won’t max out Q1. We have a strong chance at Q2 with the availability of gift cards in both categories. Q3 has a great opportunity to buy & sell depending on what kind of sales and promotions Kohl’s has at the time. Q4 is solid as usual.

I really only miss the drugstores category, which was great for buying Vanilla Reloads and getting some bonus points while doing it. Other than that, the categories are about the same.

As always, you can count on a post from me when it’s time to activate your Chase Freedom card for these bonuses.

Chase Freedom First Quarter 2014 Bonus Categories Announced + Increased Sign Up Bonus

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Chase Freedom recently announced the bonus categories for the first quarter of 2014.

Chase Freedom The bonus categories are:

  • Gas stations
  • Movies
  • Starbucks

As always, you will earn 5x UR points per dollar spent at any of these categories, up to $1,500 in spend. This translates to 7,500 UR for the quarter.

What I’ll probably do is see if any gas stations sell gift cards that I’ll end up using.

Increased Sign Up Bonus

The Chase Freedom credit card is also sporting a new, increased bonus of $200 cash back (i.e. 20,000 UR points) after spending $500 within the first 3 months of opening the card.

For a while, this card has only offered 10K UR points as a sign up bonus so this is a great offer if you’ve been waiting for it.

Check out the Chase website for full details.

Live: Chase Freedom 4th Quarter 2013 Bonus Categories

Welcome to the home stretch of 2013! As of yesterday, October 1st, the Chase Freedom bonus categories for the 4th quarter are now live!

The end of this quarter will be right December 31, 2013.

Chase Freedom Q4 2013 Bonus Categories


The categories are, in my opinion, perfect for the shopping/holiday season:

  • Select department stores

As far as “select” department stores go, some of the major ones are as follows:

  • JCPenney
  • Kohl’s
  • Macy’s
  • Nordstrom
  • Sears
  • Bloomingdale’s
  • Neiman Marcus
  • Saks Fifth Ave

Here is the complete list for eligible merchants this quarter.

Note, there are exclusions from this promotion – Target, Walmart, and “Membership Warehouses” (think Costco, BJ’s, or Sam’s Club).

I won’t write about any tactics about how to spend up to the $1,500 limit. I’m sure everyone can find a way to do that.

What I will remind you about is that most of these department stores are also available at the Chase Ultimate Rewards Mall so start your shopping there first to ensure you get the most points from your purchase!