Author Topic: Chase Freedom Card. Tips and Tricks.  (Read 5840 times)

wealthviahealth

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Chase Freedom Card. Tips and Tricks.
« on: January 02, 2015, 03:58:41 PM »
It sounds like a good number of us on here have Chase Freedom cards, so with the new categories announced; what are some of your tips or tricks for this quarter? ( Grocery Stores, Theaters, Starbucks)

For me, only the grocery store category is relevant and I was happy to see this one. The major store near me sells gift cards to just about every store I would need to shop at ( including amazon) in addition to having all non-food related items such as clothes, electronics, AND gas.
I will have no problem filling this quarters spend with these methods.

How about you? What strategies have you implemented in past quarters/ plan on for the upcoming categories?

JLee

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Re: Chase Freedom Card. Tips and Tricks.
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2015, 04:25:36 PM »
I didn't think of buying Amazon gift cards at grocery stores to net 5% cash back from it...that's a great idea.  There was 5% back on Amazon last quarter, which was great.

seattlecyclone

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Re: Chase Freedom Card. Tips and Tricks.
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2015, 04:27:37 PM »
I've been burned by buying gift cards a few times. I bought a $250 Lowe's gift card at the end of June to max out my rewards when they were giving 5% back at restaurants and Lowe's for the quarter. I was working on a big home project, had already spent a bunch of money at Lowe's on said project, and figured I would easily use up the card. But it turns out that most of the stuff I needed since then was available for a slightly better price at Home Depot. Do I go with the cheaper product at Home Depot or use up my credit at Lowe's? Option A means I'm still stuck with a bunch of money on a Lowe's card, but Option B means I'm not actually realizing any benefit from buying that gift card at 5% off. Not a great position to put myself in.

Saving 4% on your purchases by buying a gift card (compared to the standard 1% cash back) is only worth it when you actually use the card. In my case I probably would have been better off leaving my $250 working for me and charging future purchases to the credit card as they came up. And this is a situation where I had every reason to believe I would use the gift card within a month or two!

JLee

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Re: Chase Freedom Card. Tips and Tricks.
« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2015, 04:40:20 PM »
I've been burned by buying gift cards a few times. I bought a $250 Lowe's gift card at the end of June to max out my rewards when they were giving 5% back at restaurants and Lowe's for the quarter. I was working on a big home project, had already spent a bunch of money at Lowe's on said project, and figured I would easily use up the card. But it turns out that most of the stuff I needed since then was available for a slightly better price at Home Depot. Do I go with the cheaper product at Home Depot or use up my credit at Lowe's? Option A means I'm still stuck with a bunch of money on a Lowe's card, but Option B means I'm not actually realizing any benefit from buying that gift card at 5% off. Not a great position to put myself in.

Saving 4% on your purchases by buying a gift card (compared to the standard 1% cash back) is only worth it when you actually use the card. In my case I probably would have been better off leaving my $250 working for me and charging future purchases to the credit card as they came up. And this is a situation where I had every reason to believe I would use the gift card within a month or two!

Amazon is my go-to place for almost everything from car parts to home supplies, so I can guarantee I would eventually use an Amazon credit.  That said, I'd only do that if I had plans to purchase something - wouldn't be worth spending hundreds to just have it sit as account credit.

Amazon even has free same-day delivery for some products in Phoenix, which saves me from having to drive anywhere to get stuff (even if I need it ASAP). The next purchase will likely be a new valve/cartridge for my tenants' bathroom...the shower faucet is dripping and it is so stiff they keep breaking handles.  Amazon carries at about the Home Depot price. :)

Daisy

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Re: Chase Freedom Card. Tips and Tricks.
« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2015, 04:42:39 PM »
I've got a Chase Freedom card. I got it for the 0% APR but have never used these quarterly "specials". A lot of times it's stuff I don't spend much money on.

For example, I buy my groceries through a CSA so I don't think the grocery benefit helps me.

I'm also not a big fan of Amazon cards. Maybe it's just me, but when I compare prices on Amazon with other retailers, they don't always win. In fact, many times it's the same or more expensive on Amazon. I find that most online retailers play around with the shipping charges to the point that in the end, the price ends up being the same.

I just bought a ski case online and compared prices on Amazon vs another retailer and the other retailer won. It also helps that I got a new AMEX 0% APR card that gave me a $10 discount on the other website, but even without that it was cheaper.

I guess this is more of an Amazon rant kind of post.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2015, 04:44:24 PM by Daisy »

acorn

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Re: Chase Freedom Card. Tips and Tricks.
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2015, 05:02:05 PM »
I'm also not a big fan of Amazon cards. Maybe it's just me, but when I compare prices on Amazon with other retailers, they don't always win. In fact, many times it's the same or more expensive on Amazon.

I receive Amazon gift cards as gifts, but I've yet to use them because I can't think of what to buy. My main expenses are groceries with the occasional household products/toiletries, and I find that the stores have better prices than Amazon. Guess my Amazon store credits will just sit there for a little longer until I find something I want (that is also cheaper).

Giftcards for churning purposes are only worth it if you know that you are definitely going to use them.

Jags4186

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Re: Chase Freedom Card. Tips and Tricks.
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2015, 05:16:01 PM »
I will be buying $500 visa gift cards for $505.95 at Pathmark and then walking over to the money order kiosk and promptly buying a $498.70 money order to deposit. $505.95*5=2530 points=$31.62 in travel rewards-$7.25 cost=$24.37 profit!

kpd905

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Re: Chase Freedom Card. Tips and Tricks.
« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2015, 05:59:17 PM »
I will be buying $500 visa gift cards for $505.95 at Pathmark and then walking over to the money order kiosk and promptly buying a $498.70 money order to deposit. $505.95*5=2530 points=$31.62 in travel rewards-$7.25 cost=$24.37 profit!

This is similar to what I have been doing with my Amex Blue Cash Preferred card at grocery stores.  Buy a $500 Visa gift card to send toward my student loans through Evolve Money.  So I pay $505.95, get $30.35 cash back for a $24.40 profit per card.

thedayisbrave

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Re: Chase Freedom Card. Tips and Tricks.
« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2015, 06:28:15 PM »
Great thread idea!

I got both my CF & CSP last year.  I probably use CCs just enough for the CSP annual fee to be worth it. 

What I plan to do is load up my Starbucks for the year & buy a bunch of $10 pre-loaded gift cards.  These I will use as gifts for friends for birthdays etc. - easy and not ridiculously expensive. 

Rest of it will go toward groceries and grocery store gift cards to use the rest of the year.  Gas cards too, maybe, depending on what's available.  I plan on hanging out at the "Gift Card Mall" and checking out options.

mochila

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Re: Chase Freedom Card. Tips and Tricks.
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2015, 07:44:08 PM »
I use Barclays's Sallie Mae card to get 5% back on groceries all year, but I'll be using my Chase Freedom for groceries this month to keep the account open, because I haven't used it since qualifying for the sign-on bonus in March. Because Chase has some of the most lucrative bonuses for travel-oriented cards, I'd like to refrain from pissing them off.

For those with large families, the $1500 quarterly limit on rewards for groceries will be more useful than the $250 monthly cap imposed by Barclays, but my spending at grocery stores seldom rises above $100 per month. The Freedom category also includes movie theaters and Starbucks. I'll be surprised if I wind up spending anything at either. For me, the categories (restaurants for Q2, gas for Q3, and Amazon for Q4) seem more practical than Discover's, but both will be spending quality time in the sock drawer once January is over.

The Sallie Mae card was originally marketed to students, so it emphasizes typical studently expenses, and in addition to the deal on groceries, gives 5% cash back on up to $250 worth of gas and $750 spent at bookstores (including Amazon) each month. People give me Amazon gift cards for any and all occasions, so I have an absurd balance to spend, and have never used my Sallie Mae card there. No, I have no affiliation with Barclays, but I just flove this card!
« Last Edit: January 02, 2015, 08:13:03 PM by mochila »

JLee

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Re: Chase Freedom Card. Tips and Tricks.
« Reply #10 on: January 04, 2015, 09:56:08 AM »
I've got a Chase Freedom card. I got it for the 0% APR but have never used these quarterly "specials". A lot of times it's stuff I don't spend much money on.

For example, I buy my groceries through a CSA so I don't think the grocery benefit helps me.

I'm also not a big fan of Amazon cards. Maybe it's just me, but when I compare prices on Amazon with other retailers, they don't always win. In fact, many times it's the same or more expensive on Amazon. I find that most online retailers play around with the shipping charges to the point that in the end, the price ends up being the same.

I just bought a ski case online and compared prices on Amazon vs another retailer and the other retailer won. It also helps that I got a new AMEX 0% APR card that gave me a $10 discount on the other website, but even without that it was cheaper.

I guess this is more of an Amazon rant kind of post.
If all you are about is the absolute cheapest price, sure you may be able to find places cheaper.  However, if you ever experience any problems (or if you want your stuff promptly), Amazon wins in every case. I often get same-day delivery and their customer service is absolutely stunning.

legacyoneup

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Re: Chase Freedom Card. Tips and Tricks.
« Reply #11 on: January 04, 2015, 10:08:26 AM »
I'm also not a big fan of Amazon cards. Maybe it's just me, but when I compare prices on Amazon with other retailers, they don't always win. In fact, many times it's the same or more expensive on Amazon.

+1. I get most of my electronics from Newegg these days.