We’ve previously written about the changes coming to the Chase Freedom Unlimited this month. While those changes were previously reported to be taking effect on September 15th, Chase has sent emails to cardholders indicating that the new bonus categories will begin on September 13, 2020.
As a reminder, both the Freedom Unlimited and the soon-to-be-released Chase Freedom Flex will offer the following new bonus categories:
- 5x travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards
- 3x dining at restaurants (including select delivery services)
- 3x drugstore purchases
- 5x on Lyft rides through March 2022
The Freedom Unlimited will also continue to offer 1.5x on all other purchases. Note that the earning rates are typically advertised as cash back, but it is earned in the form of Chase Ultimate Rewards, which can be redeemed at a rate of $0.01 each for a check or statement credit. If you have a premium Chase card like the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Sapphire Reserve, you can combine your points with the premium card in order to transfer to airline and hotel partners.
It’s great to see these bonus categories going into effect a couple of days early. Remember that these bonus categories will take effect for both new and existing Freedom Unlimited cardholders.
H/T: Doctor of Credit
Does this make the Chase Sapphire Reserve a little less valuable since now you can get 3x dining? I guess the CSR makes the points worth 1.5cpp, but.. that annual fee…
We debated this at length on this week’s podcast (publishing tomorrow – 9/5/20). Here was my take in blog form:
I’m baffled by the 5x using the Ultimate Rewards site. The card doesn’t give you UR points, unless you transfer to a Sapphire or Ink account. Can you charge UR travel with his credit card?
Actually, it does earn UR points. Even though Chase advertises their Freedom and no-fee Ink cards as earning cash back, they actually earn Ultimate Rewards points that are easily cashed out for 1 cent each.
Yes, of course – I transfer them over every month. Thanks. Does this mean you can actually transfer Freedom points to United or Flying Blue, without one of the fancy cards? And, could you stash all your UR points on a Freedom card while you dumped a Sapphire, then applied for a different Sapphire after a month or so, and both keep the points and get the SUB?
You need an active CSR or CSP to transfer points (maybe some Ink cards work too), so you need one of the fancy cards. But you can stash all of your UR points on a Freedom card when you dump a fancy card, and transfer them back to your new fancy card. You are taking a non-zero risk that Chase will limit transfers between Freedom cards and Sapphire cards, but difficult to quantify that risk.
Drugstores probably doesn’t mean online RX…
Would we be eligible for the 5% grocery for 1 year with a product change from a Visa Chase Freedom (not Unlimited)?
No. That’s part of the welcome bonus — you have to apply new to get that.
What do you think are the odds that they will nerf the grocery sign up bonus when the new categories kick in
As close to zero as I could say without being the person in charge of it at Chase. They have a page set up comparing the Flex and CFU and counting down the days until Flex launch and it lists the welcome bonus for both cards with the 5% grocery offer included. I don’t think that’s going away.
does this apply to the Business unlimited too?
It doesn’t appear to be the case.
No. Just the Freedom Unlimited.
They’ll need to buff the Sapphires to keep it somewhat competitive. I hope they get new/higher spending categories too. I don’t need more filler garbage like DashPass and Lyft Pink.