Chase Freedom Flex Top-Spend Category Bonus

Chase Freedom Flex Top-Spend Category Bonus

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The Chase Freedom FlexSM Credit Card (review) is a fantastic no annual fee credit card that can earn you cash back or Ultimate Rewards points. The card offers 5x points in rotating quarterly categories, and 3x points on dining and drugstores. Chase has now rolled out an awesome new promotion on the card, which can be stacked for an amazing return on spending.

Chase Freedom offers 5x points in biggest spending category

In the fourth quarter of 2021, the Chase Freedom Flex is offering 5x points in your top spending category. You’ll earn 5x points (or 5% cash back) in the eligible rewards category in which you spend the most through the end of the year:

  • This is valid for purchases between October 1 and December 31, 2021
  • You can earn the 5x points on at most $1,500 worth of spending
  • This only applies on the Chase Freedom Flex, and not the Chase Freedom Unlimited® (review), or the “old” Chase Freedom
  • There’s no registration required, but rather this bonus will be earned automatically
  • Eligible rewards categories include travel (including transit), dining, home improvement stores, select streaming services, select live entertainment, gas stations, drugstores, fitness clubs, grocery stores (not including Target and Walmart); only the one category in which you spend the most will qualify

Admittedly the rollout around this offer is a bit unusual. We’re three weeks into the fourth quarter, and I just received communication about this from a Chase representative. Furthermore, there’s not actually a live promotion page, other than the FAQs page for the offer.

Stack this with Chase Freedom Q4 5x points categories

The Chase Freedom Flex offers rotating quarterly 5x points bonus categories. For the fourth quarter of 2021, the card is offering 5x points at Walmart and on purchases made with PayPal.

You can potentially stack these offers, to earn a total of 9x points (each of these offers is for 4x bonus points, in addition to the 1x points you usually earn, for a total of 9x points). However, taking advantage of that is a bit nuanced:

  • This wouldn’t work at Walmart, since Walmart isn’t an eligible rewards category for the top spending category promotion (the grocery stores category excludes Target and Walmart)
  • This could work with PayPal — you’d need to make a purchase through PayPal in an eligible top spending category

In other words, you could earn 9x points when making a purchase through PayPal with a merchant that falls in the travel, dining, home improvement, streaming services, live entertainment, gas station, drugstore, fitness club, or grocery store category, assuming that’s also the category in which you spend the most on the card this quarter.

Any OMAAT readers have any creative ideas here for maximizing this? Maybe there are some airlines or hotels that let you pay with PayPal, so that you can qualify for the PayPal category, as well as the top spending category bonus? Or perhaps there’s some value in making purchases through online grocery stores? Hmmm…

Bottom line

While the rollout of this promotion is strange, the Chase Freedom Flex is offering 5x points in the eligible category that you spend the most in for the fourth quarter, on up to $1,500 of spending. This stacks with the card’s fourth quarter 5x points category, valid for up to $1,500 of spending at PayPal and Walmart.

If you can find an eligible merchant that allows purchases through PayPal, you could stack the offers and earn up to 9x points, which would be awesome.

Do you plan on taking advantage of this new promotion on the Chase Freedom Flex?

Conversations (19)
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  1. YJC Guest

    I just made a airline ticket purchase from the Chase travel portal, the charge will be the top spending category of the month and quarter. However, when I looked at my Freedom Flex account, I only see a 1% reward. The additional 4% due to purchase on Chase travel portal and 4% on top spending category bonus did not show up. When will I get the extra reward points? I called the Freedom Flex customer...

    I just made a airline ticket purchase from the Chase travel portal, the charge will be the top spending category of the month and quarter. However, when I looked at my Freedom Flex account, I only see a 1% reward. The additional 4% due to purchase on Chase travel portal and 4% on top spending category bonus did not show up. When will I get the extra reward points? I called the Freedom Flex customer service, and the lady seems is not aware of the top-spending reward bonus at all.

  2. Infinity Guest

    Can you spend up to $3000 total (2x $1500 bonuses)? In other words, can you spend $1500 using PayPal, AND spend another $1500 in any of the top-spend categories, too? Or, is it $1500 total for both promotions combined?

  3. Sarwar Guest

    Planning a trip to Universal Studios and Disney World in December. I will buy park tickets from undercover tourist as they accept PayPal and purchase from them shows as travel. Also, they are cheaper than buying directly. This will give me 9x and given the number of people in my party and days we plan to spend at the park, I will easily maximize the $3k spend. I didn’t check if Disney or Universal accept PayPal and if they do, it will code as entertainment.

  4. Surya N. New Member

    Any ideas on how one could maximize this promotion with Apple? Thinking about spending a ton of money this quarter thru Apple, and Apple.com accepts PayPal, but not sure if Apple purchases fall under any of those categories. Happy to hear any creative ideas.

    1. Steve S Guest

      I’m wanting Apple’s new MacBook Pro. My plan is to use PayPal 9x of $1.5k spend in grocery store, purchasing Apple Gift Cards.

      Luckily I have the older Freedom card(5x category), buy another $1.5k Apple gift cards at Walmart or use PayPal for Best Buy points(1.25)
      Apple limits gift cards to 8 FYI.

      Then I would use US Bank 5% category for electronic stores for the rest of the purchase. $4.4k Spend = $280...

      I’m wanting Apple’s new MacBook Pro. My plan is to use PayPal 9x of $1.5k spend in grocery store, purchasing Apple Gift Cards.

      Luckily I have the older Freedom card(5x category), buy another $1.5k Apple gift cards at Walmart or use PayPal for Best Buy points(1.25)
      Apple limits gift cards to 8 FYI.

      Then I would use US Bank 5% category for electronic stores for the rest of the purchase. $4.4k Spend = $280 Points/Cash back from Credit cards; Not accounting for Grocery/Best Buy points you accumulate.

      TIP: also use the Apple Education discount will a save you at least $300 off the product as well.

    2. RW Guest

      How do you use PayPal charged to Chase Flex at Grocery Store to purchase Gift Cards?

      The grocery stores I've found don't accept PayPal directly (e.g. thru PayPal app). PayPal thru Google Pay will only pull from checking account to PayPal balance it won't charge to Flex card. PayPal Key doesn't work in person and Gift Cards aren't sold via online purchase.

      I couldn't figure out a way to do it.

  5. Anthony Guest

    Am I misunderstanding the promotion - isn't the way to "maximize" this to:
    1) Spend $1,500 on PayPal in a category that does't also count for this enhanced earnings (so you earn 7,500 as you normally would in a PayPal Quarter)
    2) Also spend $1,500 on travel through the portal (so you earn an additional 13,500 UR points) or spend $1,500 on dining/drugstore (so you earn an additional 10,500 UR points)

    If you...

    Am I misunderstanding the promotion - isn't the way to "maximize" this to:
    1) Spend $1,500 on PayPal in a category that does't also count for this enhanced earnings (so you earn 7,500 as you normally would in a PayPal Quarter)
    2) Also spend $1,500 on travel through the portal (so you earn an additional 13,500 UR points) or spend $1,500 on dining/drugstore (so you earn an additional 10,500 UR points)

    If you spend on PayPal in an enhanced earnings category, you only get the 13,500 UR points

    I don't anticipate spending $1,500 in the Chase portal in the quarter, so I am going to divert some dining spend to the Freedom Flex this quarter

    1. RW Guest

      It mostly depends on how you're planning to spend, but your suggestion doesn't really maximize. Basically you're getting the 1X+4X bonus on PayPal, a separate 4X bonus on UR portal travel. Then it's kind of arbitrary, you get the bonus 4X=6,000pts for top spending on one of the 2, doesn't matter. If you chose a non-enhanced category the 4X goes on Travel, if you used an enhanced category it goes on that. But you end...

      It mostly depends on how you're planning to spend, but your suggestion doesn't really maximize. Basically you're getting the 1X+4X bonus on PayPal, a separate 4X bonus on UR portal travel. Then it's kind of arbitrary, you get the bonus 4X=6,000pts for top spending on one of the 2, doesn't matter. If you chose a non-enhanced category the 4X goes on Travel, if you used an enhanced category it goes on that. But you end up in the same place 21,000 points on $3K spend in 2 categories.

      To maximize you aim to triple-stack the bonuses. Best is if you've still got 1X+4X bonus on grocery during first year. Otherwise it's extra 2X on restaurants or drug stores. Then you try to use PayPal billed to Flex card in these categories. This isn't necessarily easy because not everywhere allows this form of payment, but it can be done.

      Then you get 1X (base) + 4X (grocery) + 4X (PayPal) + 4X (Top-spend) = 13X. This is a full 19,500 (or 16,500 on restaurant/drug) on only $1500 spend.

      If you're spending on UR portal travel also, you still get 1X+4X on that on unlimited amount. But to make a direct comparison to your example, $1500 would generate 7,500 points. Combined with above gets you to 27,000 points (or 24,000) vs. 21,000 as you suggest.

  6. Nick Guest

    Would buying a flight in the CUR portal give you 5X (for portal usage) and 5X more for this newest offer with the flex?

    1. Nick Guest

      Maybe I should read the FAQs first. I see CUR portal and travel being top spend would also be 9x total.

  7. Tom Guest

    I believe some people have a x5 earning rate in grocery stores in year 1 of having the card? If so, I assume they could stack the grocery category for an x9 earning rate.

    1. OPR New Member

      Yep that's my plan!

  8. Art_Czar New Member

    I was looking to purchase new tires prior to this promo coming out. Discount Tire & Tire Rack are 2 online retailers accepting PayPal. On Award Wallet's look up tool, the MCC code for both retailers shows up as Ground Transportation or Transportation. Worse case 5x for tires ... if I'm lucky, another 4x UR points.

  9. Nick Guest

    In addition to United, SWA takes PayPal too

  10. Justin Guest

    You can connect your card to your PayPal Key and effectively use it anywhere online.

  11. Michael Guest

    I believe UberEats takes PayPal. Paying UberEats I believe rings up as restaurant, but reloading or buying gift cards does not. So this would be a way, provided you spend the most money on dining.

  12. JustinB New Member

    Looks like United allow PayPal payments for most items including gift certificates. Seems like an easy route there.

  13. JR Guest

    Who is a National vendor that allows Gasoline to be purchased with pay pal?

    1. Eric Guest

      You can pay for Chevron gas with PayPal via the Chevron app. You'd just need to input your stall number when you're there and set PayPal as your method of payment.

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The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

YJC Guest

I just made a airline ticket purchase from the Chase travel portal, the charge will be the top spending category of the month and quarter. However, when I looked at my Freedom Flex account, I only see a 1% reward. The additional 4% due to purchase on Chase travel portal and 4% on top spending category bonus did not show up. When will I get the extra reward points? I called the Freedom Flex customer service, and the lady seems is not aware of the top-spending reward bonus at all.

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Infinity Guest

Can you spend up to $3000 total (2x $1500 bonuses)? In other words, can you spend $1500 using PayPal, AND spend another $1500 in any of the top-spend categories, too? Or, is it $1500 total for both promotions combined?

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RW Guest

It mostly depends on how you're planning to spend, but your suggestion doesn't really maximize. Basically you're getting the 1X+4X bonus on PayPal, a separate 4X bonus on UR portal travel. Then it's kind of arbitrary, you get the bonus 4X=6,000pts for top spending on one of the 2, doesn't matter. If you chose a non-enhanced category the 4X goes on Travel, if you used an enhanced category it goes on that. But you end up in the same place 21,000 points on $3K spend in 2 categories. To maximize you aim to triple-stack the bonuses. Best is if you've still got 1X+4X bonus on grocery during first year. Otherwise it's extra 2X on restaurants or drug stores. Then you try to use PayPal billed to Flex card in these categories. This isn't necessarily easy because not everywhere allows this form of payment, but it can be done. Then you get 1X (base) + 4X (grocery) + 4X (PayPal) + 4X (Top-spend) = 13X. This is a full 19,500 (or 16,500 on restaurant/drug) on only $1500 spend. If you're spending on UR portal travel also, you still get 1X+4X on that on unlimited amount. But to make a direct comparison to your example, $1500 would generate 7,500 points. Combined with above gets you to 27,000 points (or 24,000) vs. 21,000 as you suggest.

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