Cashback cards are not the most interesting reward credit cards. Most of them earn at a fixed rate and offer limited redemption options. But Chase is different, with a 5% cashback calendar offering generous rewards when changing vendors every quarter.
Qualifying cardholders who take advantage of these bonuses can earn up to $75 each quarter – in some cases, you can even convert these rewards into Ultimate Rewards® points to pay for expensive trips.
The latter feature really differentiates the Chase cashback calendar from the Discover calendar, which limits redemptions to cashback only. And as we approach the end of the year and the holiday shopping season is just around the corner, this is the perfect moment to maximize every dollar spent.
Here’s everything you need to know about Chase’s 5% cash back rotating deals.
What are the Chase 5% cashback categories for 2022?
The Chase 5% cashback categories for 2022 have been quite impressive, offering increased rewards in the everyday spending categories.
Qualified Chase cardholders will receive 5% cashback for the current quarter on Walmart and PayPal transactions. Please note that the bonus is limited to the first $1,500 spent each quarter.
- January – March 2022: Grocery stores (except Walmart and Target)
- April – June 2022: Amazon and some streaming services
- July – September 2022: Gas stations, car rentals, cinemas and some entertainment programs
- October – December 2022: Walmart and PayPal
Remember: to take advantage of these bonuses, you need to activate them before the deadline. The registration deadline for the current quarter is December 14, 2022.
Which Chase cards are eligible for a 5% cash back?
Both the Chase Freedom Flex℠ and the Chase Freedom Card are eligible for a 5% cash back. Although Chase Freedom is no longer accepting new members, you can still get a Freedom Flex℠ card. The current welcome bonus is $200 cash after you spend $500 within three months of opening an account.
In addition to the 5% spinning cashback, Freedom Flex℠ cardholders receive 5% cashback on Lyft rides through March 31, 2025. Other bonuses include 5% cashback on trips purchased through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® program, 3% cashback on purchases at pharmacies and restaurants. (including takeaway and some delivery services) and 1% everywhere.
Freedom Flex℠ does not require an annual fee and has several benefits that make it profitable in the long run. Cardholders receive up to $1,000 per year in mobile phone protection, capped at $800 per application and includes a $50 deductible. The card also includes up to $1,500 in trip cancellation/interruption insurance per person, as well as additional car rental insurance.
Read more: The best credit cards with no annual fees
Before applying for a Chase credit card, be sure to review the 5/24 rule to determine if you are eligible. As a rule, Chase will not approve a new credit card for you if you have opened five or more credit cards in the last 24 months – with Any bank.
How to maximize the current quarter
Chase is offering 5% cashback at Walmart and PayPal during the current quarter. While this may seem limiting at first, be aware that Walmart has a significant presence both online and in the number of IRL stores. The bonus applies to all Walmart stores, including gas stations and online shopping.
So you can stock up on gifts, gas, holiday decorations, groceries, and pretty much everything else, while still getting 5% cashback for the rest of the year. Even though this bonus is only given to one seller, Walmart’s inventory is extensive enough to cover most spending categories.
Read more: Best Cashback Credit Cards for Holiday Shopping
If you shop online frequently, it may be easier to claim the 5% cashback bonus through PayPal. That’s because PayPal is accepted at popular retailers like eBay, Zara, Victoria’s Secret, Express, and Forever 21. You can even use PayPal to book travel.
If you download the PayPal app, you’ll also be able to use the QR code to make in-store purchases from over a million merchants across the country. This opens up even more opportunities for you to use the Chase 5% cashback bonus.
PayPal also sells e-gift cards that you can use to get 5% cash back on groceries, travel, retail purchases, restaurants, and more. And electronic gift cards can be a great gift for friends and family who live far away. You’ll save on shipping, and when you buy via PayPal with your Chase card, you’ll get a 5% cashback.
How to activate the Chase Cash Back reward
You can activate the Chase Quarterly Cashback Bonus online or through the mobile app. Chase sets a quarterly enrollment deadline, which you must meet if you want to earn rewards. The registration deadline for the current quarter is December 14, 2022.
The good news is that you will receive a 5% cashback bonus for the entire quarter no matter when you sign up (as long as you do it before the deadline). For example, if you max out the current quarter bonus by November 30th, but activate it on December 14th, you will still receive 5% cashback for your purchase in November.
To ensure you don’t miss the registration deadline, you can sign up to receive email notifications when it’s time to register. You can then activate the bonus electronically in one of three ways:
- Online – Register online by entering your name, zip code and the last four digits of your card.
- Chase mobile app – Activate the bonus by logging into the Chase mobile app and selecting “Cashback 5%”.
- ATM – Activate the 5% cashback offer via Chase ATM when withdrawing money.
Use of awards
While the Chase Freedom Flex℠ rewards are referred to as “cashback”, they are technically points that you can redeem for cashback. Cashback Rewards can be applied to a range of purchases:
- Pay Yourself Back – 1.25 cents per point (Currently for some charities)
- Cash and gift cards – 1 cent
- Travel — 1 cent
- Amazon – 0.08 cents
If you also have an Ultimate Rewards® credit card, such as Chase Sapphire Preferred® or Chase Sapphire Reserve®, you can transfer your rewards to airline and hotel programs at a 1:1 ratio. The latter option is a great way to maximize your rewards as you can use them to pay for luxury hotels and first-class travel.
Here is the full list of Chase Ultimate Rewards® transfer partners:
- Aer Lingus, Aeroclub
- Air Canada Airplane
- Air France/KLM Flying Blue
- British Airways Executive Club
- Emirates Skywards
- IHG Rewards Club
- Iberia Plus
- JetBlue TrueBlue
- Marriott Bonvoy
- Singapore Airlines ChrisFlyer
- Southwest Airlines Quick Rewards
- United MileagePlus
- Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
- World Hyatt
Is the Chase cashback calendar worth it?
The Chase cashback calendar is an incredibly profitable tool that can help you multiply your rewards in regular spending categories. While bonus rewards are capped at $75 per quarter, cardholders can save up to $300 per year. The ability to earn $300 in cash rewards on the card with no annual fee, combined with the ability to convert those rewards into loyalty points, is incredibly valuable.
If you have nothing to lose (other than a temporary two to five point credit score drop), adding Chase Freedom Flex℠ to your wallet for a 5% return calendar makes a lot of sense. You will definitely find an opportunity to maximize your daily expenses for at least one quarter of the year, and it will not cost you anything.
The Chase cashback calendar is a great way to get rewarded for your daily purchases. You can register for the quarterly bonus online or through the mobile app and you will receive a 5% cashback bonus for the entire quarter, no matter when you sign up. You can exchange your rewards for cashback, travel or gift cards or transfer them to airline and hotel programs at a 1:1 ratio.