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Million Mile Secrets reader Jeremy writes in:
Emily and I love the Chase Freedom® Visa because we get 5 times the number of Ultimate Rewards points (up to $1,500 or 7,500 points a quarter) on our purchases. There are different bonus categories each quarter.
This means that spending $6,000 a year ($1,500 each quarter) can get you 30,000 Ultimate Rewards points (or $300 in cash back) which is a very good return for your spending! Of course, this assumes that you max out each quarter’s bonus categories.
You can either redeem the points earned for cash back (5% cash back isn’t too shabby and some folks prefer cash back). Or you can transfer the Ultimate Rewards points to the Chase Sapphire Preferred, Chase Ink Bold or Chase Ink Plus card and from there to airline or hotel partners such as Hyatt or United.
The Chase Freedom doesn’t have an annual fee, so it is a good Chase card to keep for a long time. Keeping a card for a long time helps increase your credit score and builds a history with Chase which often has the best offers.
You can also convert your Chase Sapphire Preferred (if the annual fee is coming due) or Chase Slate card to the Chase Freedom card by calling the number at the back of your card. You won’t get the 10,000 points sign-up bonus, but you will be able to keep the credit history associated with your older card. The main benefit of the Chase Freedom is the bonus from actually spending on the card and not the sign-up bonus.
Chase Freedom Amazon
The bonus categories for October, November and December 2013 include select department stores and Amazon.com. But Jeremy has to activate his Chase Freedom 4th quarter bonus before December 14, 2013 to qualify for the 5X points on Amazon.com purchases. Activation is retroactive which means that all your purchases from October 1, 2013 will earn the bonus even if you activate the bonus category on the last day!
Emily got 5X Ultimate Rewards points when the Chase Freedom offered 5X points for Amazon.com purchases in Q1 2012. Buying Amazon gift cards directly from Amazon is coded as an Amazon purchase and you should get 5X points for the purchase.
You can buy Amazon.com email gift cards with your Freedom card before December 31, 2013 and apply the balance to your Amazon.com account. That way, you don’t have to worry about using your Freedom card with every Amazon purchase and can even use the balance next year!
The gift card balance doesn’t expire and Amazon will automatically apply your gift card balance to your future purchases.
Or you can buy gift cards to give as gifts during the Holidays! But remember that Amazon doesn’t let you buy a gift card with a gift card.
That said, you have to pay off your credit card balance in FULL when it is due. Otherwise you’ll pay high interest fees which will cost more than the value of the 5X points or 5% cash back.
Note that you won’t earn 5X points if you use the Chase Freedom with Amazon Payments.
The Chase Freedom’s 5X Ultimate Rewards points (or 5% cash back) is a great benefit for a card which has no annual fee!
And you can earn 5X Ultimate Rewards points for buying Amazon gift cards directly from Amazon with your Freedom card! Don’t forget to activate the 5X category bonus before December 14, 2013.
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