[Disclosure: Emily and I get a commission for the links to the cards in this post. You don't have to use our links, but it helps keep the blog going, so we're very grateful when you do!]
Activating takes less than a minute.
You can activate any time between March 15, 2014 and June 14, 2014 and still get the 5X bonus points.
Between April 1, 2014 and June 30, 2014, the bonus categories are restaurants and Lowe’s home improvement stores. You’ll earn the bonus for up to $1,500 in purchases, for a maximum of 7,500 Chase Ultimate Rewards points or $75 cash back.
What’s the Chase Freedom Card?
Link: Chase Freedom
Emily and I love the Chase Freedom card because it’s really easy to earn 5 times the number of Ultimate Rewards points (up to $1,500 or 7,500 points a quarter) for purchases we would make anyway.
The 5X bonus categories change every quarter, but if you spend $6,000 a year ($1,500 X 4 quarters) you’ll get 30,000 Ultimate Rewards points.
The Chase Freedom is a fee-free card, so it’s a good card to keep for a long time. This can increase the average age of your credit card accounts and improve your credit score.
You can redeem the points earned for cash back, or transfer points to the Chase Sapphire Preferred, Chase Ink Bold, or Chase Ink Plus. From there, you can transfer points to airlines and hotels like United, Southwest, Hyatt, and IHG.
How to Make the Most of the Bonus
We enjoy going out for dinner, so we’ll put all our restaurant spending this quarter on the Chase Freedom card.
At Lowe’s, we’ll buy gift cards to help meet the $1,500 bonus spending for the quarter. We’ll use the gift cards later in the year at places we would shop anyway. Lowe’s sells gift cards to many popular stores and restaurants, like Amazon, Gap, Applebee’s and The Cheesecake Factory.
But you have to be able to pay your bill off in full to avoid paying interest charges. So don’t do this if you can’t pay your bill in full.
And some folks have reported using the Chase Ultimate Rewards shopping portal to earn extra points at Lowe’s for online purchases.
You can’t buy gift cards online, but if you need to buy home improvement supplies, you could have them delivered to the store to save on shipping and earn extra points!
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