bank rates

Chase Freedom Offers Bigger, 5% Rebates

We thought the Chase Freedom Visa card had one of the best cash reward programs when we wrote about it last fall.

Now Chase has increased the bonus rebate for its “seasonal rewards” from 3% to 5%. (The standard rebate for all other purchases remains 1%.)

Chase Freedom Visa CardEach quarter of the year represents a season, and this spring (April through June) the big rebate will be available on furniture, home improvement and gardening products.

This summer (July through September) the emphasis switches to travel, and you’ll get 5% back on airline tickets, hotel bills and rental car fees.

In the fall (October through December) you’ll be rewarded for shopping at grocery stores, movie theaters and department stores — which is handy if that’s where you do your Christmas shopping.

We still don’t think Chase Freedom is quite as good a deal as the Cash Plus card the bank stopped offering several years ago.

It offered 5% cash back on purchases at gas stations, drug stores and supermarkets, and 1% on all other spending, which seems like a more consistently lucrative rebate for most consumers.

But with many cards scaling back their reward programs, Chase is making a good offer even better.

The new, improved rebate starts today. Click here to apply for, or learn more about, the Chase Freedom Visa card.

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Comments (6)
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6 Existing Comments
  1. HTownRose said:
    on March 15th at 08:39 am

    I suggest everyone who already has an account call & find out what the changes are. I just did, & was told I have until 4/30 to get the $250 for $200 points bonus. Luckily, I’m very close. They also told me about a fairly new service that will mail a check to utilities, as many utilities do not take credit cards, or charge extra to do so. And if I switch now to the seasonal categories vs. the top categories for the 3%, right now utilities are in the seasonal category, so I am going to do that & then pay ahead on my utilities to get to the $200 so I can get the $250 before that bonus expires.

  2. Peggy Miller said:
    on March 15th at 10:50 am

    The only drawback in the Rewards program is from the vendors themselves. A lot of stores and services list their merchandise as Miscellaneous or Other. In particular Wal-Mart, K-mart, Best Buy. I only found this out because I never got my 3% Rewards on a computer I bought last year from Best Buy. 🙁

  3. Rudolf Schmidt said:
    on March 15th at 05:01 pm

    Who pays for these “rewards”? Not Visa. The merchants do. When you pay with a “rewards” card, Visa takes a bigger cut of the purchase in order to pass it back to you. That forces the merchant to raise his prices to compensate. So in the end, it’s you who are paying for your own “rewards”.

  4. A.K. Leung said:
    on March 16th at 10:42 am

    The percentage of Chase cash plus card’s cash reward on grocery, gas and drug store is not 5%. It has been reduced to 3% for some time now. Please check.

  5. HTownRose said:
    on March 17th at 10:56 am

    Sorry for the misinformation, the utility thing is wrong. I spoke to a supervisor today & the guy who told me that on Monday was wrong. Also, the supervisor said it was only 3% not 5% for the every quarter bonus points.

    I see the point about I’m paying for my own rewards, but it’s sort of like coupons. I would love it if they would do away w/coupons & just lower the prices, but unless/until that happens, if I don’t use coupons I am subsidizing those who do.

  6. Maryann said:
    on March 20th at 11:23 am

    Watch out for these category bonuses. Last fall, Chase ran a promotion promising 3 percent cashback on all purchases made at discount stores and computer stores. I bought a computer using my card and also did some shopping at Best Buy at Big Lots (discount store). I used the Chase card specifically to get the bonus, which never appeared. There is no way to contact Chase’s Ultimate Rewards department; you have to call the number on the back of your card, which brings you to a call center in India. I had to call three times before finally getting the $30 posted to my account. It is apparently NOT automatic.