Q3 2022 5% Quarterly Categories: Activate, Offers & Suggestions (Freedom/Flex, Discover, Dividend, Cash+ & more)

It’s now possible to activate/enroll all 5% category credit cards for the third quarter of 2022, including the Chase Freedom, Chase Freedom Flex, Discover IT, Citi Dividend, US Bank Cash+ and a few others. 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: July 1st – September 30, 2022. 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 – Gas, Car Rental, Entertainment

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

With your Freedom and Freedom Flex cards, earn 5% back this quarter on up to $1,500 in spend at Gas Stations, Car Rental Agencies, Movie Theaters and Select Live Entertainment.

  • Gas Stations – Gas is a nice category – with the high gas prices going on it might even be possible for some people to max out with that alone. List of examples. There are also some convenience stores like 7-Eleven and others which might count as gas.
    • Those who have the 5x Gas offer from a signup bonus should be eligible to get 9x total during Q3 2022. You can still signup now for a new Freedom card and get this double dip.
  • Car Rental Agencies – Car rentals could be useful for summer vacation rentals. List of examples.
    • Just keep in mind that you might want to use a different card that has primary collision insurance, such as the Sapphire Reserve. Some suggest switching cards at the end of the rental as  a workaround.
  • Movie Theaters – List of examples.
  •  Select Live Entertainment List of examples.

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

Discover – Restaurants, Paypal

Activation Link / Our original post

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

  • Restaurants – dining is always a big category for a lot of people.
  • Paypal – I find Paypal one of the easiest categories to use since they are accepted at a huge variety of online stores, including places like Walmart.com, Bestbuy.com, etc. You can even pay your taxes with Paypal for a fee and net some profit or send money to a friend and net a little.

Activate to earn 5% Cashback Bonus at Restaurants and PayPal from 7/1/22 (or the date on which you activate 5%, whichever is later) through 9/30/22, on up to $1,500 in purchases. Restaurant purchases include those made at merchants classified as full-service restaurants, cafes, cafeterias, fast-food locations, and restaurant delivery services. PayPal eligible purchases are made through the PayPal wallet online, money transfers via PayPal using your card, and point-of-sale transactions using PayPal Here. Payments made through Xoom transfer services are not eligible for 5%. Using PayPal on restaurant purchases will only earn a total of 5%. PayPal and the PayPal logo are trademarks of PayPal or its Affiliates. Listed merchants are in no way sponsoring or affiliated with this program.

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

Citi Dividend – Gas, Home Improvement

Landing Page | Our Original Post

With your Dividend card, earn 5% back this quarter at Gas Stations and Home Improvement Stores. 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.

  • Gas Stations –  Gas is a nice category, especially with the high gas prices we have now. This category does overlap with the Chase Freedom card. There are also some convenience stores like 7-Eleven and others which might count as gas.
  • Home Improvement stores – good for summer home improvements. You can also buy gift cards to other retailers at stores like Home Depot and Lowe’s.

A lot of people already maxed out their Dividend cards for the year with $6,000 in purchases last quarter at the Grocery or Drugstore category.

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

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.

Nusenda FCU – Gas, Education, Hotel, Airfare

Landing Page | Our Original Post

  • Earn 5% this quarter on up to $1,500 in purchases on Gas expenses, Education expenses, Hotels, and Airfare.

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

Affinity FCU – Gas, Wholesale Clubs, Fast Food

Landing Page | Our Original Post

  • Earn 5% this quarter on purchases on up to $3,500 in purchases for Gas, Wholesale Clubs, Quick Service Restaurants (Fast Food).

The 5x is on top of regular earn for a total of 6x or 7x, depending on the card.

Abound CU – Streaming, Phone, Cable, Internet

Landing page | Our Original Post

  • Abound Credit Union Visa Platinum card offers 5% on up to $2,000 in purchases for Streaming, Phone, Cable, and Internet services.

Langley FCU – Gas, Dining, Summer Adventures

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 for July 2022 are: Gas, Dining, Summer Adventures

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:

  • Travel
  • Restaurants
  • Utilities [water, cell, electric, etc.]
  • In-Store Wholesale Purchases [Costco, Sam’s Club, etc.]
  • Department Stores
  • Hardware & Home Improvement Stores
  • Charitable Organizations
  • Pharmacies & Drug Stores
  • Amazon.com

Safe Credit Union [CA] – Day Care, Utilities, Drugstores, Clothing Stores, Theme Parks, Charities

Landing Page | Our Original Post

  • Safe Credit Union Cash Rewards Visa card offers 5% this quarter on Day Care, Utilities, Drugstores, Clothing Stores, Theme Parks, and Charities. (Apparently with no limit.)

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AM
AM

UberEATS no longer accepts Discover cards. Cards already added to your wallet work, but trying to add a new Discover card results in a pop-up message stating they don’t take Discover cards. Using Discover through PayPal for UberEATS should still work for the 5% this quarter though.

Yuri
Yuri

@Chuck:

We can also add Langley FCU Signature Cash Back Visa:
https://www.doctorofcredit.com/langley-federal-credit-union-5-signature-cashback-visa-card-100-limit-changes-monthly/

5% cash back eligible on gas, dining, or “summer adventure” purchases based on cardholder’s choice, posted 7/1/22 through 7/31/22, up to $100 in earnings.

Yuri
Yuri

@Chuck:
Could we add Safe CU cash rewards card with 5 % rotating categories?

https://www.safecu.org/personal/borrow-money/credit-cards/cash-rewards-visa-signature-credit-card/

Q3 active categories for them now:
Day Care
Utilities
Drugstores
Clothing stores
Theme parks
Charities

Numba1
Numba1

Does sending money via friends/family on PayPal work for 5% back with Discover?

Bill
Bill

It should. But I’m pretty sure that you pay the same fee if you’re using a credit card as you would to a business. But it’s still MM with the 5% back.

Darlene
Darlene

With Discover 5% PayPal.. just wonder if anyone has tried refunding / canceling a purchase and whether the 5% cashback still stuck? For example.. booking a refundable hotel for 2023 and later needing to cancel?

Alex 🔗

I didn’t try… But I used PayPal (QR code) for transfers between p1 and p2 to max out current quarter. It has about 2% fee per transfer and you will get tax form (but I am not gonna file it because transfers between family members should be tax free anyway plus I added “gift” word to description of each transaction) Darlene

DGS
DGS

Can anyone apply for the Abound FCU Platinum card? I had the impression that membership was limited to a few counties in the Louisville-Ft. Knox area.

Jim
Jim

Costco gas purchase with freedom cards won’t code as gas purchase and will code as warehouse ? Pls confirm

MC
MC

Less than 10 posts below someone said it codes as gas. If you want confirmation be the DP you want to see, for all we know your station might be the one that codes as warehouse.
Jim

ieatdogfood
ieatdogfood

Gas is gas. 7-11 is gas too. 😉

sdsearch
sdsearch

Only SOME locations of 7-11 that don’t have gas pumps code as gas. Others code as groceries.

ieatdogfood
ieatdogfood

Never seen a DP of 7-11 coding as groceries. Please share.

sdsearch
sdsearch

It may depend on the card type (Amex vs VIsa/MC vs Discover). On my Amex Everyday Preferred card:

$2.19

Will appear on your Dec 18, 2020 statement as 7-ELEVEN 23949 00072WEST LOS ANGELES CA

Rewards for This Charge
6
(3x) U.S. Supermarkets

$2.16

Will appear on your Dec 18, 2020 statement as 7-ELEVEN 13794 00071SANTA ANA CA

Rewards for This Charge
6
(3x) U.S. Supermarkets

$2.16

Will appear on your Nov 18, 2020 statement as 7-ELEVEN 18226 00071COSTA MESA CA

Rewards for This Charge
6
(3x) U.S. Supermarkets

Note: What other types of cards call “groceries”, Amex calls “supermarkets”.

DGS
DGS

Anything purchased at a Kroger Fuel Center will code as Gas ⛽ with a Freedom card.

sdsearch
sdsearch

Every location CAN POTENTIALLY code differently, since it’s the owners of the franchise, not the owners of the chain (unless it’s a corporate-owned location) that set up the coding.

So the only way can know FOR SURE about a given location is to do a small purchase first at that particular location.

MissMBA
MissMBA

Going to miss the 5% cash back from the Discover card at Target. Wish another card had Target on this quarter. I could get the Target credit card but trying to avoid opening more cards at the moment.

Jim
Jim

If you like things at target you better go to bedbathbeyond which has more varieties then Target and you can always veg everything for 20% off with just a few google search for the coupon

Kyle808
Kyle808

If you want 5% at Target, you could alternatively to the Target credit card, open the Target debit card. It doesn’t take a card slot but still earns 5% back. In fact, most will suggest the Target debit card over the Target credit card as both Target cards are “closed-loop” cards meaning they may only be used at Target.

MissMBA
MissMBA

I didn’t know it existed. I’ll look into. Thank you!

Eric

MissMBA,

Kyle808 gave you good advice but I want to correct 1 thing that he wrote. The Target RedCard debit card does not give “5% back”. You receive 5% off of the purchase.

Bobby

If you’re willing to wait a bit, there’s quite often a sign up bonus for the Target RED debit card that pops up.

MissMBA
MissMBA

They have a $40 dollars off a $40 + purchase going on till the 23rd. Have you seen better deals?

Sam F.
Sam F.

That’s the best. Go for it!

JW
JW

I have Target Red Card debit (no hard pull) and it gets the 5% discount on all purchases at Target.

luvsdeals
luvsdeals

I wish there was a way to pay some of the bills, such as health insurance/car insurance etc. with PayPal to get a little cash back from it similar to when PayPal Key was around especially since some of the apps/sites I use for restaurants etc. don’t accept PayPal.

Kyle808
Kyle808

You could purchase prepaid debit cards in-store or online sites that accept PayPal then use the prepaid debit card as you would PayPal Key. There is an activation fee for most prepaid debit cards but it may be still worthwhile (e.g. my local supermarket sells $1000 debit Visa cards with a $3.95 activation fee which eats only .395% from my card earnings.)

ieatdogfood
ieatdogfood

WHAT SUPERMARKET?

MC
MC

and what card? is it an 808 thing? Kyle808

Kyle808
Kyle808

I would say it’s a 808 thing as I haven’t seen any $1000 denomination cards on my travels to the continental US (although, I also haven’t spent much time in grocery stores during trips). The supermarket chain I purchase from is located only in Hawaii (Foodland Hawaii). They accept my Paypal QR code which I link whichever card I have when PayPal is a 5%/5x category.

luvsdeals
luvsdeals

I didn’t think of purchasing prepaid cards online so I could use PayPal. The only issue I would have with this idea is that in the past I’ve had some virtual Visa/MC that I’ve used with only a little bit remaining balance and had trouble finishing up the last little balance on the gift card because it wasn’t enough to cover certain transactions especially when buying online and within most mobile apps because I could not split payment methods between this card with a such a small balance and then another credit card for the remainder. Most apps and websites don’t allow split payments so I would not be able to spend/use up the remaining small balance on these prepaid gift cards regardless of them being virtual or physical. Thoughts or tips?

Kyle808
Kyle808

When I have low balances on prepaid cards, I make a specific payment with the remainder towards my utilities. It may vary based on your provider but my water/sewage, internet, and cellular provider all accept manual input of how much I want to charge to a card.

ieatdogfood
ieatdogfood

Many grocery merchants auto drain gebits, you don’t even have to remember the remaining balance. However there is definitely a limit on how many you can drain in one transaction. IIRC it was 5. Don’t quote me on that. YMMV on retailer.

hamn
hamn

There’s PayPal’s bill pay feature, which sends an ACH payment to the vendor.

luvsdeals
luvsdeals

Interesting, so what kind of bills can I pay? Rent, water bill, electric, cable or Internet, health and car insurance? Also are there any fees that PayPal charges in order do this? I know they charge fees when selling on eBay but also sending money to others, us small percent plus dollar amount based.

Delanchet
Delanchet

For anyone that uses Progressive for any form of insurance (excluding renters), they take PayPal for payment.

randomguy
randomguy

I wish Geico took Paypal too.

AP
AP

If anyone is going to Disney World later this year, this could be a good time to pay for the trip. Disneyworld.com also takes PayPal. Though many people probably are getting a better deal of they bought discounted Disney gift cards.

David
David

.

Eric
Eric

Only issue I see is that the Disneyland purchases are coded as, “Category Travel” Bought our tickets from the Disney website on Friday and this makes it like we won’t be getting the bonus.

Jason
Jason

Did your purchase on Disney website end up receiving the 5x bonus?

Eric
Eric

Yes, purchased on the Disney website. TBD if I will receive the 5%.

Eric
Eric

No, it did not ultimately give me the 5% bonus. Called Chase.. no luck.