Odds & Ends: 5% Chase Freedom Categories, Club Carlson 25% Discount, Ritz Carlton Credit Card with $395 Fee Waived, Citi American Airlines Reduced Mileage Awards & Free Hertz Points

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1.  Activate Chase Freedom Categories.  Today’s the last day to activate the 5% quarterly bonus on groceries and movie theaters by using your Chase Freedom credit card.

Activating the quarterly bonus is retrospective retroactive meaning that you will earn 5% (up to $1,500 or 7,500 Ultimate Rewards points) for all grocery store and movie theater purchases made in April, May, and June.

If you’ll be buying groceries in the next few months, it doesn’t hurt to buy grocery store gift cards or gift cards to other stores from your grocery store before June 30 with your Chase Freedom to earn the 5% bonus.

2.   Club Carlson 25% Discount.   Via Deal Seeker, get up to a 25% discount for bookings made by June 15, 2012 and completed by June 30, 2012.  Not all hotels are available with a discount, but it is worth checking especially since you can get 138,000+ points with just 3 Club Carlson hotel stays.

Facebook fans know that I checked into a Country Inn & Suites this week, and Emily will be checking into one this week.  These are all stays which we would have to make anyway, so Club Carlson’s promotion successfully got us to switch hotels.

3.  Ritz Carlton Credit Card with $395 fee waived.  Readers wrote in with a link to a 70,000 point Ritz Carlton credit card with the $395 fee waived.  As always, I updated the Hotel Credit Card tab with a link to this offer (doesn’t pay me a commission).

You get 70,000 points as a sign-up bonus, $200 credit towards airline incidentals, lounge access, and Gold status for the 1st year (free internet!).  The offer is for 1st year owners of Ritz Carlton residences, but they don’t ask you if you’re a member on the application form.

4.  Citi American Airlines Reduced Awards.   The new list of reduced mileage awards for Citi American Airline cardholders is out.  There’s more information on reduced mile awards in my earlier post on using American Airlines miles.

5.  Win 3,000 Hertz Points.  Frugal Travel Guy and Points, Miles, & Martinis have Hertz car rental points to give away!

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17 Responses to Odds & Ends: 5% Chase Freedom Categories, Club Carlson 25% Discount, Ritz Carlton Credit Card with $395 Fee Waived, Citi American Airlines Reduced Mileage Awards & Free Hertz Points

  1. The newest deal on the Ritz-Carlton card is for 70K points, not 50K, and the $395 fee is waived. You also don’t have to be a “residences owner”. You still get the other incentives with this new deal. It’s not a lot, but you can also redeem those 70K RC points for 25K Southwest RR points. Link to 70K deal provided below:
    http://www.ritzcarltonclub.com/landing/insider/2012-06/

  2. What Tommy B. said.

  3. For next quarter… Do gas stations or restaurants sell gift cards? Not their own but something useful like Amazon or Kohl’s? I don’t eat out much and I don’t have a car either, I wonder how I’m going to max out this one…
    :-(

  4. “Activating the quarterly bonus is retrospective meaning that you will earn 5% (up to $1,500 or 7,500 Ultimate Rewards points) for all grocery store and movie theater purchases made in April, May, and June.”

    That would be retroactive not retrospective.

  5. The Club Carlson deal says it can’t be combined with any other promos, which makes me wonder if it will count towards the big point promo.

  6. @Tommy B. @harvson3 – Looks like I didn’t proofread that well late last night. :) I’ve added the link to the 70K offer in the post and in the Hotel credit card tabs. Thanks again!

    @Lantean – Yes, KwikShop sells many gift cards to other vendors. You can also buy a gas station gift card, use it at the associated grocery store (e.g KwikShop gift cards can be used at Kroger/Dillon’s etc.) to buy gift cards to Amazon or Kohl’s etc.

    @John – Fixed!

    @Rene – The Club Carlson promotion terms say that you can’t use this rate with any other discounted rate. The Club Carlson promotion for bonus miles is not a discounted rate promotion, so I suspect this rate will count. “Promotion is not valid for existing reservations and may not be used in conjunction with any other package, promotion, group or convention rate, or any other discounted rate.”

  7. I wondered whether the upcoming Chase Freedom category for “Restaurants” is as broad as the Sapphire’s category “Dining.”

    So I contacted Chase. Their response seems to indicate “yes,” which is good news:

    “Please be advised, merchants in the restaurant category
    include fast food restaurants to fine dining
    establishments, including coffee shops, donut shops, bars,
    pubs, and night clubs. Some merchants that sell food and
    drink and are located within larger merchants that sell
    other goods or services may not be assigned a restaurant
    merchant code and would not be included in the restaurant
    category; for example, sports stadium concessions and
    department store cafeterias.”

  8. Can I combine Ritz points with Marriott Reward Points? I know I can use Marriott points at Ritz but I don’t know if I can combine them.

  9. Wes,
    According to the last sentence in the top half of this page: http://www.ritzcarlton.com/en/Rewards/RedeemingRewards/HotelStays.htm
    it states: “You may also redeem your points at the Marriott family of participating hotels worldwide.”
    and then takes you to this Marriott page:
    http://www.marriott.com/rewards/usepoints/hotelrew.mi

    …that being said, I don’t easily see how Ritz points can be applied to Marriott rewards points…but someone will be able to explain it (I hope!).

  10. @harvson3 – Thanks for sharing! Looks like the rep copied and pasted the description from the web, but good to have it confirmed. —> https://creditcards.chase.com/freedom/FAQ.aspx#Efive8

    @Wes @BillyBob - I believe that you choose to earn either Marriott or Ritz Rewards points if you have one account. http://www.marriott.com/Multimedia/PDF/us/rewards/mr_Ritz_FAQ.pdf

    If you have a sperate account Marriott and Ritz account, I don’t believe you can transfer the points yourself, though you may be able to combine them later by calling customer service.

  11. Can AA reduced mileage awards be booked on line or do you call AA?

  12. Thanks @BillyBob and @Daraius. After I asked the question I researched it and found out you can’t be enrolled in both Marriott Rewards and Ritz Carlton Rewards. You can close the Marriott Rewards account and transfer the points to a new Ritz account but I’d much rather earn Marriott points than Ritz points.

  13. @mdrobts – You have to call AA to book them.

  14. T&C: Previous and existing Ritz-Carlton or Marriott Rewards® Credit Card cardmembers/accounts are not eligible for this bonus
    Can anyone verify?

  15. @goheerow – that’s what everyone on this flyertalk thread is discussing: http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/milesbuzz/1356263-70000-points-ritz-carlton-rewards-credit-card-first-year-free.html#post18810030. there hasn’t been time for anyone who has had the marriott card in the past to get the card and have the points post, so no data points yet. reps have confirmed the bonus for previous marriott credit card holders, but chase has a history of doing that and then sending a letter when it comes times for the points to post explaining ineligibility.

  16. I’m suprised more people aren’t interested in the ritz carlton card. I currently have a marriott card, signed up for a Ritz Carlton number and entered it into my RC card application. When the card came it had my marriott rewards number on it, and they switched my account to a Ritz Carlton account, but I got the 70000 points today. Also when I called them, they said that the 200 airline credit could is per calander year, so you get it twice before cancelling the card. The guy I talked to also gave me permission to use the $200 for parking or airline gift cards.

  17. @Jon – Nice to know that you can get the bonus for both cards. Thanks for sharing!

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