Chase Freedom Q4 2016 bonus categories — activate now

chase bonus categories q4 2016Q4 begins Oct. 1, and, if you have the Chase Freedom card you’ll want to activate your bonus categories, so you don’t miss out on earning 5 percent cash back (on up to $1,500 in combined purchases).

Historically, rotating-category cards (which include the Chase Freedom, Discover it and Citi Dividend card for those who are grandfathered in) roll out holiday-friendly categories for Q4 (which stretches from Oct. 1 to Dec. 31). And, this year, the Chase Freedom continues that pattern.

The Chase Freedom’s Q4 2016 bonus categories are:

  • Department stores
  • Wholesale clubs (such as Costco, BJ’s and Sam’s Club)
  • Drug stores

The nice thing about the Freedom’s bonus categories is that you can earn 5 percent cash back retroactively if you forget to enroll by Oct. 1. Say you enroll Nov. 1 instead — Chase will credit you back for all your category spending back to Oct. 1. Q4 is a busy time, though, so we suggest enrolling now, which takes only a moment via your card account online.

As always, your non-category purchases will earn 1 percent back.

This year’s Q4 categories are a good collection for holiday shoppers, and the warehouse club category could be particularly lucrative for those who are members of one of these clubs. In fact, Chase, which also included wholesale clubs in its Q2 and Q3 bonus categories, is just one issuer that has started including them in its bonus categories in 2016. You can thank the Costco-AmEx shake-up for that. Now that Costco has parted ways with American Express, Visa cards like Chase Freedom can be used there.

As lucrative as the Chase Freedom bonus categories can be, if you find them too much of a hassle, consider the Chase’s Freedom’s sister product, the Freedom Unlimited card, which offers 1.5 percent cash back on everything.

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