Published on January 3rd, 2016 | by Chuck20
What Counts as Gas & Transportation for 5x with Freedom and Discover?
The Chase Freedom card and the Discover IT card are offering 5x rewards on gas and transportation purchases from January 1, 2016, until March 31, 2016. After activating the benefit, we can earn 5x rewards on up to $1,500 in spend, for a maximum of $75 cashback or 7,500 points.
The Freedom’s 5x is more valuable for those who have a premium Chase card as it can be then transferred to travel partners. The Discover has an edge for those who are enrolled in the Double Cashback offer which will turn the 5% into 10%.
Both cards receive 5x rewards on the following two categories:
Earning 5x on Gas
The gas part of the deal should be the same on Freedom and Discover; both include most regular gas station pumps, and both mention that gas purchased at a warehouse or grocery store may not be eligible. These gas retailers sometimes have the gas purchases coded like other store purchases and not as gas.
For specific examples, see the Freedom list of gas stations inclusions and exclusions here and the Discover list here. One important exclusion mentioned by Discover is that gas stations affiliated with superstores, supermarkets, and warehouse clubs may not be eligible.
Both Freedom and Discover cards may have some creative ways of using the 5x rewards as well. Some convenience stores and gas stations sell gift cards and these are occasionally considered the same as a gas purchase to trigger the 5% rewards.
Earning 5x on Transportation
The similarities between Freedom and Discover end, however, when looking at the details of the Transportation benefit. Chase advertises the benefit as ‘Local Commuter Transportation’ while Discover calls it ‘Ground Transportation.’ The wording, in this case, isn’t just an esoteric difference. Freedom only earns 5x on local transportation like taxis and subways, not on any long-distance transport like Amtrak or car rentals whereas Discover will earn 5x on all ground transport.
Examples of things that are included on the Freedom:
- Subways and local commuter trains
- Uber and Lyft (even UberEATS)
Examples of things that are excluded:
- Transportation outside the US
- Toll and bridges
- Bike sharing services
- Car rentals
Discover includes just about everything:
- Charter & Tour Bus Lines
- Local & Suburban Public Transportation – Buses, Trains
- Taxis, Limos
- Uber and Lyft
- Bike Share Programs
- Rental Cars
They only exclude “ground transportation purchases made through travel agencies or travel aggregator sites,” since these purchases won’t necessarily come up as ground transportation at all. Booking a rental car on Priceline won’t be eligible, for example.
Amtrak should work and transportation outside the US may work as well.
Certain things are still unknown with Discover:
- Tolls and bridges
- Parking lots or garages
- Cruise lines
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