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Chase Freedom Card Disappoints with Its Most Recent 5% Bonus Categories–No Costco!

I carry and use the Chase Freedom card for occasional purchases, because I am an avid bonus points collector. In the past year, I have traveled from Chicago to: Mexico (four times); Oklahoma City (twice); Dallas; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (twice); and New Orleans (twice) ALL FOR FREE due to bonus points that I got from purchases or from signup bonuses (those signup bonuses were earned on three different CHASE cards). I still have over a thousand dollars in my point bank toward future travel. Each quarter, the Chase Freedom card offers a 5X bonus offer for purchases from certain types of stores. Last quarter was restaurants and movie theaters. The quarter before that, it was drugstores and grocery stores. Traditionally, the final quarter of the year is devoted to warehouse clubs such as Costco and Sam’s club. Disappointingly, the most recent quarter, which started yesterday, October 1, 2017 is Walmart and department stores.

For me, this is a big disappointment. Last year, I purchased gift cards at Costco. With the 5% bonus on those purchases, it was like getting a 7.5% refund on each and every purchase. That is because I transfer all the bonus points from the Chase Freedom card to my Chase Sapphire Reserve card, which gives a 50% bonus toward travel if you purchase your tickets using points through the Chase Ultimate Rewards website. So a $100 gift card at Costco (which could be used for anything at Costco, including gasoline), would earn me 500 bonus points (100 points times 5, because it was in the bonus category), which is worth $5.00…but when transferred to Chase Sapphire Reserve, that $5 would buy $7.50 in travel.

I predict many customers will be disappointed that warehouse clubs were not included in the bonus categories this Christmas. I don’t shop at Walmart and I honestly can’t remember the last time I visited a department store.