It’s Official: Here Are the 3 New Chase Freedom 5X Categories for Early 2019. And How to Earn the Full 7,500 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

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It’s Official: Here Are the 3 New Chase Freedom 5X Categories for Early 2019.  And How to Earn the Full 7,500 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

Scott LiebermanIt’s Official: Here Are the 3 New Chase Freedom 5X Categories for Early 2019.  And How to Earn the Full 7,500 Chase Ultimate Rewards PointsMillion Mile Secrets Team

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The Chase Freedom 5X categories for January through March 2019 are now official.  I’ll give you tips for how to earn the maximum of 7,500 Chase Ultimate Rewards points during that time on $1,500 worth of spending with your Chase Freedom credit card.  To activate this bonus, just click the link in the email you’ll get from Chase.

The categories will be gas stations, drugstores, and tolls.  (In a moment I’ll give you tips for making the most of these.)

7,500 Chase Ultimate Rewards points are worth $75 cash back.  But I get more than $75!  I love to travel.  And Chase points are worth much more when you use them for travel awards.  Here’s what you do: move your Chase Ultimate Rewards points from your Freedom credit card to any one of these:

Everyone on the Million Mile Secrets team has either the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card OR the Chase Sapphire Reserve®.  And many of us also have the Ink Business Preferred Credit Card.  (I’m excited to apply for this one next!)

The 5 Cards Im Using The Most Right Now Joseph
The Chase Freedom 5X Categories for January through March 2019 Are Gas Stations, Drugstores, and Tolls.  I’ll Share Tips for Earning the Full Bonus of 7,500 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points and How to Use the Points for Travel!

With any of the cards above, your Chase Ultimate Rewards points get a big boost in value!  Instead of 7,500 points yielding $75, you can earn a minimum of ~$95 off your next flight, hotel, rental car, etc.  You just buy it with Chase points instead of money on the Chase travel site.  (It’s just like Expedia.) . But wait, there’s more! 🙂

Move Chase Ultimate Rewards Points From Chase Freedom to These Cards for Really Big Travel

When I first got the Chase Freedom card I settled for cash back.  And that’s great.  But I realized I could get a lot more from my points for the travel I wanted to do.

The trick is to transfer your Chase Ultimate Rewards points into airline and hotel loyalty programs.

For me, I’ve had great success transforming my Chase Ultimate Rewards points into United Airlines miles, Hyatt points, and Southwest points.  And there are other great partners like British Airways, JetBlue, Marriott, IHG, and more.

You Can Easily Use Chase Ultimate Rewards Points to Fly to Europe. Here I Am Visiting Stonehenge, Just Outside of London. My Strategy Is to Move the 5X Points I Earn With the Freedom Card to My Chase Sapphire Preferred

Here are just a few examples of easy-to-book travel I’ve had with the help of Chase Ultimate Rewards points:

  • completely free stays at an all-inclusive resort hotel suite on the white sandy beaches of Cancun
  • Business Class round-trip flights to Europe for peak travel in the summer
  • Southwest flights to the Dominican Republic
  • coach flights around the US

Chase Freedom Categories — Earn up to 7,500 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points per Quarter — Quick Tips

You can spend $1,500 combined in these categories to earn 5X points on each $1 spent to get the 7,500 Chase points.  Just click the link in the email Chase sends you to enroll.  It’s super easy.

Gas Stations

Beyond fuel, gas stations often sell lots of the items.  Look carefully in the gas station store.  You’ll find useful things you’d be buying anyway.  Also, sandwiches. 🙂

Not sure if a certain place will count as a gas station?  Try making a small non-fuel purchase at your local 7-11 that sells gas, or Wawa, etc.  Click on the purchase in your online Freedom account and you’ll see if it “coded” as a gas station to earn 5X points.  If so, now you’re earning 5X on coffee and doughnuts too!  I meant salads.  I meant to write salads.

Drugstores

You already know drugstores sell all sorts of things from contact lenses to printing photo books to groceries.  But try drugstore websites too.  Some of the well-known drugstores have free shipping or cheap shipping.

Tolls

These are the worst.  I wish I had a trick for this.  But at least you’ll feel a bit better knowing you’re earning 5X points per $1.

Bottom Line

If you plan to travel in 2019, move your Chase Ultimate Rewards points from your Freedom credit card to any one of these that we highly recommend:

  • Chase Sapphire Preferred Card – I have it. I love it.  There’s no annual fee in the first year so you can try out the points-travel hobby with no risk.
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve – has a significant annual fee but pick this one instead if you know you’ll make use of the outstanding perks that more than pay for itself 
  • Everyone on our team has one of the two cards above!
  • Ink Business Preferred Credit Card — if you have a small business, this is fantastic, in part because it has the biggest Chase Ultimate Rewards sign-up bonus!

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Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card

Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card

  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent on travel and select business categories each account anniversary year
  • Earn 1 point per $1 on all other purchases–with no limit to the amount you can earn
  • Points are worth 25% more when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • Redeem points for travel, cash back, gift cards and more – your points don't expire as long as your account is open
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Employee cards at no additional cost
  • $95 Annual Fee

More Info

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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Tolls, hurrah! I’ve been getting about 2% cashback with my US Bank Edge Select, which is dedicated to my business car. That 5% is better as it’s a larger amount, and as points can transfer to my new Ink Business Preferred card. Thanks for the heads-up, I’ll switch my automatic payment of Bay Area FastTrack at the end of the month!

Do gift cards bought at drugstores count?

Drugstores have VISA gift cards. For a small fee ($5.00), you can earn 1500 Ultimate reward points.

Well, those categories pretty much suck.