Q4 2023 5% Quarterly Categories: Activate, Offers & Suggestions (Freedom/Flex, Discover, Dividend, Cash+ & More)

Update 9/17/23: Citi has been released and it’s grocery. Added below.

It’s now possible to activate all 5% category credit cards for the fourth 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: October 1st – December 31, 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 – PayPal, Wholesale Clubs, Select Charities

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

With the Freedom and Freedom Flex cards, activate to earn 5% back this quarter on up to $1,500 in spend at PayPal, Wholesale Clubs, and at Select Charities.

  • Paypal – Should work for any purchase with Paypal payment. This is always a easy and useful category given that many/most online retailers accept Paypal, e.g. Walmart, Target, Best Buy, etc.
    • I sometimes pay my taxes with a credit card via Paypal to trigger this category, read more about paying taxes with a credit card in this post.
    • Some people might find it worthwhile to swallow the 2.9% Paypal fee and max out this category by paying family or friends with their Freedom card. Just note the fine print technically excludes this: “Person-to-Person (P2P) transactions made with your Chase Freedom card on PayPal may be prohibited or not eligible for 5%.”
    • You can also do your year-end charitable giving with Paypal payments on many charities, or to almost any charity with Paypal Giving Fund.
    • Readers note that if you use the Freedom Flex via Paypal at Dining or Drugstores you’ll end up getting 7x due to the extra 2x bonus the card has on those categories.
  • Wholesale Clubs – Should work for Costco, Sam’s Club, BJs, and similar.
    • Bear in mind, Costco in-club only accepts Visa cards; online you can use Mastercard as well, and you can even order Costco Cash cards for use in-club. Also note, gas at Costco will not work to earn the 5x; the workaround is to buy Costco Cash cards in-club and use those to purchase gas.
    • You can buy Sam’s Club gift cards at the club or online which can then be used at Walmart or Walmart.com or Walmart gas. (Or you can buy Walmart e-gift cards from Paypal Digital Gifts which also earns 5x as part of the Paypal category.)
    • Some wholesale clubs sell third-party gift cards or even Visa gift cards.
    • Exclusions: “Gas, fuel, wholesale specialty service purchases such as travel, insurance, cell phone and home improvement will not qualify in this category. Mastercard not accepted at Costco warehouses or at gas stations.”
  • Select Charities – includes: American Red Cross, Equal Justice Initiatives, Feeding America, Habitat for Humanity, International Medical Corps, International Rescue Committee, Leadership Conference Education Fund, NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, National Urban League, Thurgood Marshall College Fund, United Negro College Fund, UNICEF USA, United Way, World Central Kitchen
    GLSEN, Out and Equal, Sage.

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


Discover – Amazon, Target

Activation Link / Our original post

With your Discover card, activate to earn 5% back this quarter on up to $1,500 in purchases on Amazon.com and at Target.

  • Amazon.com 
  • Target – Not very useful for someone who already has the 5% Target REDcard. It can still be useful for buying Target gift cards at Target which do not earn 5% on the Target REDcard.

Activate to earn 5% Cashback Bonus at Amazon.com and Target from 10/1/23 (or the date on which you activate 5%, whichever is later) through 12/31/23, on up to $1,500 in purchases. Amazon.com purchases include those made through the Amazon.com checkout, like digital downloads, Amazon Fresh orders, Amazon Local Deals, Amazon Prime subscriptions, and items sold by third party merchants through Amazon.com’s marketplace. This also includes purchases in-store at Amazon Go. Amazon, the Amazon.com logo, the smile logo and all related marks are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Target purchases include those made in store at Target, Target.com, or through the Target app. Purchases from individual merchants and stand-alone stores within physical Target locations may not be eligible for this promotion. Purchases made online or through the Target app from Target affiliates, individual merchants or stand-alone stores may not be eligible for this promotion, including, but not limited to, targetoptical.com and targetphoto.com.

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

Citi Dividend – Grocery

Landing Page | Our Original Post

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

  • Grocery. Should be able to use for general purchases and grocery stores also sell gift cards.

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 Customized 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 and EV charging stations (default category)
  • Online Shopping; this category also includes cable, streaming, internet, and phone plan
  • 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 – Retail, Online, Restaurants

Landing Page | Our Original Post

  • Earn 5% this quarter on up to $1,500 in purchases on Retail Stores, Online Retail Purchases, Restaurants.

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

Abound CU – Amazon

Landing page | Our Original Post

  • Abound Credit Union Visa Platinum card offers 5% on up to $2,000 on Amazon purchases.

Langley FCU – Grocery, Streaming, Cable, Department Stores

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: Streaming, Cable & Internet services, Grocery, Department Stores.

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] – Amazon, Travel, Utility, Discounters

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:

  • Amazon, Discount Stores (ex: Walmart, Target), Travel (ex: Orbitz, Expedia), Utilities

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Citi Dividend after signing in isn’t showing the activation link for Q4’23
Are others seeing the link? Thanks


Easy spending on Costco shop card 😉 with Flex


SAFE Credit Union categories:

Discount Stores
(ex: Walmart, Target)
(ex: Orbitz, Expedia)


Happy to join the others who received the news that CITI DIV will offer 5% on groceries beginning 10/1.

This is a repeat category from six months ago. And the annual cap is $300 for ALL cashback. So, be sure to go back and add the statement cashback amounts already earned this calendar year. Subtract that amount from $300, divide by .05 and you’ll know exactly what to spend on groceries using CITI DIV next quarter.


most folks here took care of this cat for the 300.00 cash back in the past Q.


@Mikey Also please be aware that any cash back you earned with December 2022 spend but that didn’t post until January, 2023 counts towards your 2023 $300 annual cap.


Just got an email, Citi Dividend 5% will be grocery stores.


Beat me by a few minutes. Good deal, easy to max out the category.


CHASE Freedom Master with Wholesale Clubs, but Costco doesn’t take MasterCard. they mastered this really well to make customers mastering this quarter


Buy shop cards online.


Original Freedom is a Visa.


Target can still be useful. You get cash back circle earnings when not using your red card. It is just a few cents, I can’t remember how it all works. I just know when I use my Discover or Chase card I have cash back in circle to apply to my orders.


@Oscar yes, great point. If you use any card other than RedCard you get an additional 1% cash back in Target Circle rewards. RedCard users are NOT eligible for the additional 1%. So for next quarter (Q4 2023) Discover (or Target giftcards you buy at the grocery store with your Citi Dividend for 5% cash back) beats the RedCard.


Or buy Target gift cards at Target and not waste the Dividend limit. Better yet, wait for the December 10% off TGC sale at Target and stock up.


For SAFE CU: Amazon, Discount Stores, Travel, Utilities


Announcement of Dividend’s 5% categories has been consistently delayed to the last day in the past years. This tells me that this is absolutely not a priority at Citi now. The question is how long this card will last, before Citi forces product change on it.


I had no idea they still offered the card.


They don’t. It’s only for people who already have it.


Anyway to still get it like OG freedom?


Many older generations still use the cards. So hope that they keep it, and not nerf it like the Forward.


All I know is that as long as CITI DIV offers a decent 5% cashback category I’m staying put. They’ve been trying to product change accountholders for years. And if they had wanted to discontinue the card it sure isn’t happening anytime soon. Because we just got 3 more months with a great category!

524 Purgatory
524 Purgatory

Affinity FCU is completely out of the rotator game and also discontinued their spend bonus, may as well remove them from this page moving forward. Many of us with the card had our hopes up, but sadly there’s been no return.