Update: One or more card offers in this post are no longer available. Check our Hot Deals for the latest offers.
Find out in which categories you’ll earn 5% back. And how to activate your bonus!
Cards With Rotating 5% Bonus Categories
With the Chase Freedom card, through June 30, 2015, you can earn 5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points in my favorite category, restaurants!
But you’ll have to activate this bonus category by June 14, 2015, to get the extra points!
The Citi Dividend card is no longer open to new applications. But if you already have this card, you can earn 5% cash back at Home Improvement & Garden stores through June 30, 2015.
So you can earn 5% cash back on more than just home and garden!
Discover it Cash Back Card
You can also earn 5% cash back at restaurants this quarter with the Discover it Cash Back card. Plus, you’ll get 5% back when you go to the movie theater.
Be sure you activate this bonus, so you don’t miss out on the 5% cash back!
US Bank Cash+
Link: US Bank Cash+ Categories
You can choose two 5% cash back categories and one 2% cash back category with the US Bank Cash+ card.
I’ve listed a few examples for each 5% category, but check the “Merchant Examples“ for more details:
- Bookstores – Barnes & Noble, Amazon Kindle Books, and some University Bookstores) Note: Some folks say they’ve received 5% back on many Amazon purchases besides books with this category.
- Car Rental – Avis, Budget, National Car Rental
- Cell Phone – AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon
- Charity – American Cancer Society, Kiva, The Salvation Army
- Department Stores – Bloomingdales, JCPenney, Nordstrom Rack
- Electronics Stores – Best Buy, Fry’s Electronics, TigerDirect
- Fast Food – Chipotle, Panera Bread, Starbucks, and Cold Stone Creamery!
- Furniture Stores – American Furniture, Ethan Allen, IKEA
- Gyms – 24 Hour Fitness, Gold’s Gym, LA Fitness
- Movie Theaters – AMC Theatres, Fandango.com, Regal Cinemas
- Select Clothing Stores – Ann Taylor, Eddie Bauer, Old Navy
- Sporting Good Stores – Big 5 Sporting Goods, REI, Sports Authority
Otherwise, you’ll only earn 1% cash back on all spending for the entire quarter!
Earn 5% to 6% Back in Many of These Categories Year Round!
You can earn cash back in many of the above categories anytime with:
- Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express – 6% cash back at US supermarkets up to $6,000 per year; then 1%. Terms apply.
- AMEX SimplyCash – 5% cash back at US office supply stores. Terms apply.
- Chase Ink Bold (no longer available) – 5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points (5% back) at office supply stores
- Chase Ink Cash – 5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points (5% back) at office supply stores
- Chase Ink Plus – 5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points (5% back) at office supply stores
That’s because you can buy gift cards at grocery stores and office supply stores for:
- Movie Theaters
- Home Improvement Stores
- Department Stores
- Clothing Stores
Don’t Worry About Gift Cards or Rotating Categories Each Quarter!
Folks who don’t want to fuss with rotating categories might consider a card that earns multiple bonus points on every purchase, such as:
- Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard – 2X Arrival miles on everything, worth 2.1% back when redeemed for $100 or more in travel expenses
- Citi Double Cash – 1% cash back on all purchases and another 1% cash back when you pay your bill
- Discover it Miles – 1.5% cash back, doubled at the end of the 1st year, for an effective 3% back on everything
Today is the 1st day of the new quarter. So that means new 5X bonus categories have begun!
However, you can earn 5% to 6% cash back on many of these categories anytime, by purchasing gift cards at grocery stores or office supply stores with cards such as Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express and Chase Ink Cash.
Or you can avoid categories and gift cards altogether with Barclaycard Arrival Plus, Citi Double Cash, or Discover it Miles. Because these cards give you multiple bonus points for every single purchase.
You don’t have to choose just 1 type of card, but remember to choose your categories for this quarter!