Q2 2023 5% Quarterly Categories: Activate, Offers & Suggestions (Freedom/Flex, Discover, Dividend, Cash+ & More)

It’s now possible to activate all 5% category credit cards for the second quarter of 2023, including the Chase Freedom, Chase Freedom Flex, Discover IT, Citi Dividend, US Bank Cash+ and some smaller cards. In this post we’ll provide the activation link for each card and links to track your spend, along with strategies to help increase spend in these categories.

Dates: April 1st – June 30, 2023. Store purchases can usually be done until the last minute while online purchases should be given a buffer zone of a day or two.

Chase Freedom – Amazon, Whole Foods, Lowe’s

Activation Link / FAQ / Sample Stores & Exclusions / Our original post

With the Freedom and Freedom Flex cards, earn 5% back this quarter on up to $1,500 in spend at Amazon.com and Lowe’s.

  • Amazon.com:
    • The Amazon.com category includes purchases made at Amazon.com (including digital downloads, Amazon.com Gift Cards, Amazon Fresh orders, Amazon Prime subscriptions, and items sold by third-party merchants through Amazon.com’s marketplace) and Whole Foods Market (including physical Whole Foods Market and Whole Foods Market 365 stores, and the website accessible at www.wholefoodsmarket.com).
    • Those who value Ultimate Rewards at more than 1 cent-per-point will prefer using the Freedom over the Amazon Prime 5% cashback card.
    • Some people like simply reloading their Amazon balance (affiliate links in this post) in one shot for $1,500. Others will make the Freedom card their default payment method and use it organically throughout the quarter.
    • Amazon also sells a wide (somewhat dwindling) selection of third-party gift cards, including Visa, which is another option for maxing this out.
  • Whole Foods: 
  • Lowe’s:
    • Includes purchases made at Lowe’s physical stores and Lowes.com (including a variety of goods and services provided by merchant).
    • This should be popular for spring/summer home improvement. Lowe’s stores also sell a variety of gift cards, including Visa gift cards, which some people might spend on.

Tip: Click this link (login required) to check how far you are along the $1,500.


Discover – Restaurants, Wholesale Clubs

Activation Link / Our original post

With your Discover card, earn 5% back this quarter on up to $1,500 in purchases at Restaurants and Wholesale Clubs.

  • Restaurants
    • Restaurant purchases include those made at merchants classified as full-service restaurants, cafes, cafeterias, fast-food locations, and restaurant delivery services.
  • Wholesale Clubs
    • Check with your Wholesale Clubs to make sure your Discover card is accepted. Purchases of affiliated Wholesale Club services, such as delivery services, travel, and cell phone purchases, may not be eligible in this category. Individual merchants and stand-alone stores within physical Wholesale club locations, or online, may not be eligible in this category.
    • Tip: You can buy a Costco shop card online and pay with Discover, then you can use that in-club or on Costco gas. Likewise, you can buy a Sam’s Club gift card in-club or online using your Discover card, and then use that to pay at Walmart.

Tip: Login, then click this link to see you how far along the $1,500 you are.

Citi Dividend – Grocery, Drugstores

Landing Page | Our Original Post

With your Dividend card, earn 5% back this quarter at Grocery Stores and Drugstores. Citi is different than the other cards in that you have a $6,000 annual cap rather than a $1,500 quarterly cap. Thus, you can get 5% back on up to $6,000 in this quarter, you can save the entire amount for a different quarter, or you can use part up each quarter.

US Bank Cash+/Elan – Select your Categories

Activation link | Merchant List | Our Original Post

U.S. Bank Cash+ and Elan Max offer 5% cash back in two categories, up to $2,000 combined total per quarter. Keep in mind that Car Rentals was recently replaced with TV, Internet, and Streaming Services.

Here are the current options:

  • TV, Internet, and Streaming Services
  • Home utilities
  • Select clothing stores
  • Cell phone providers
  • Electronic Stores
  • Gyms/Fitness
  • Fast food
  • Ground Transportation
  • Sporting goods
  • Department Stores
  • Furniture Stores
  • Movie theaters

Tip: Login here, then scroll down and click on the red “View Your Cash+ History” button.

Bank of America Cash Rewards

Our Original Post

The Cash Rewards card from Bank of America offers 3% back on one selected category, up to $2,500 per quarter. If you don’t select anything it defaults to gas. Once you selected a category for one quarter, that remains your category in the future unless you change it. Each calendar month you can change it if you’d like, but you’re always limited to $2,500 for the entire quarter.

  • Gas (default)
  • Online Shopping
  • Dining
  • Travel
  • Drug Stores
  • Home Improvement/Furnishings

This category is especially lucrative for those who have Preferred Rewards status with Bank of America which can get you 5.25% back on one of these categories at the higher relationship level.

Lots of useful categories here. Important note: the Cash Rewards card also offers 2% back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs up to $2,500 per quarter, and that $2,500 limit combines with the Category Selection limit. After spending $2,500, you’ll earn 1% back on everything.

Other Cards with 5% Category

Nusenda FCU – Furnishing, Home, Garden

Landing Page | Our Original Post

  • Earn 5% this quarter on up to $1,500 in purchases on Furnishings, Home Improvement, and Gardening.

This is on top of the regular 1% for a total earn of 6% back.

Affinity FCU – Spend Bonus

Landing Page | Our Original Post

  • Affinity no longer runs a traditional 5x category. Instead they run a spend bonus for the duration of each quarter. This quarter runs April, May, and June. In addition to the standard points, cardholders will earn:
    • 3,000 points when spending $2,000
    • 6,500 points when spending $5,000
    • 11,500 points when spending $7,500

Abound CU – Travel

Landing page | Our Original Post

  • Abound Credit Union Visa Platinum card offers 5% on up to $2,000 on Travel purchases.
  • That includes: Airlines, Car Rental, Lodging, Cruise Lines, Air Carriers, Airport, airport terminals & flying fields, Travel Agencies & Tour Operators, Lodging Hotels, Motels, Resorts not elsewhere classified, Timeshares, Auto Rental Agency- not elsewhere classified, Motor Home & Recreational Vehicle Rental.

Langley FCU – Grocery, Drugstore, Home

Landing Page | Our Original Post

  • Langley Federal Credit Union offers 5% back each month in one selected category, on up to $100 cash back total ($2,000 spend).
  • The category options at time of this writing: Drugstores, Groceries, Home Improvement.

Vantage West [AZ] – Select your Category

Landing Page | Our Original Post

Get 5x points on the category of your choice, up to $1,500 per quarter. Eligible categories:

  1. Travel
  2. Restaurants
  3. Utilities [water, cell, electric, etc.]
  4. In-Store Wholesale Purchases [Costco, Sam’s Club, etc.]
  5. Department Stores
  6. Hardware & Home Improvement Stores
  7. Charitable Organizations
  8. Pharmacies & Drug Stores
  9. Amazon.com

Safe Credit Union [CA] – Home, Auto, Travel, Sports, Rideshare, Charity

Landing Page | Our Original Post

Safe Credit Union Cash Rewards Visa card offers 5% this quarter on your choice of one category each quarter (with no apparent limit). This quarter the categories are:

  • Home Improvement Stores, Auto Repairs & Parts, Travel/Hotels/Airlines, Sporting Goods Stores, Ride Shares (Uber & Lyft), Charities

ABOC – Discontinued

Since August 27, 2021, the ABOC Platinum rewards card has moved to a new rewards provider and no longer offers the quarterly 5x categories.

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Thank God you have the link to activate the Chase quarterly categories. I spend 15 minutes on the website and could not find the page to activate them.


For future info, on the website accounts page, there’s a link under the available balance for that credit card. On the app, select the credit card from the account screen, the activation is between Pay over time and Rewards and benefits.


made a whole foods purchase with CFF on 4/3 and that didnt trigger the 5x rotating category. bit of a bummer as i have the 5x 1st year groceries on this card and was hoping to stack for 9x this quarter at whole foods


I went today to Lowes to buy GC and was told by the manager they are only accepting cash or debit so I was not able to use my chase freedom for the 5% so I left disappointed. Has this happened to anyone else recently?

Original Jack
Original Jack

No issues buying a $200 Mastercard yesterday with my Freedom card.


Thanks for the update I’ll have to try another lowes.
Original Jack

Josh V
Josh V

Would I get the 5% back on Discover if I bought a Sams gift card in store? I could use that card at Walmart too. I have purchase online before but I have read sometime buying gift cards inside actual store may not code accurately.


Fyi Langley FCU actually lists Restaurants, Gas, or Wholesale Clubs for its April 5% choice categories.


I’m still surprised Whole Foods is part of Amazon despite it not being officially mentioned. I’m going to have to try this out to verify.


Amazon Fresh will be an easy choice to stack my year groceries another quarter just like last quarter as well.


Whole Foods didn’t trigger 5x on my Freedom Flex


I think Chuck or the main guys got to comment. Made a purchase. Will have to wait for it to process.

524 Purgatory
524 Purgatory

Safe CU q2 categories are:
Wholesale Clubs, Home Improvement, Travel, Sporting Goods Stores


does anyone know if the chase freedom flex stack whole foods 5x with the first year grocery 5x for 9x total? Thanks ahead!





“It’s now possible to activate all 5% category credit cards for the [first] quarter of 2023”


Where does it say that Chase Freedom includes Whole Foods? Looks like just Amazon.com to me.