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It’s that time of year again, time to activate your 5% cash back credit cards (I’m looking at you Discover It, Chase Freedom, and Citi Dividend). If you follow this blog or any other travel blog, chances are you have already activated your Discover It and Chase Freedom. If you haven’t, do it now! We still have a week until April, but it never hurts to be prepared. In fact, I would highly suggest activating as soon as possible so you do not forget about it.
When it came time to activate the Q1 bonus in December, I was on vacation in the caribbean and completely forgot about my Chase Freedom’s 5% bonus. Only after using my Freedom to buy gas did I realize that the bonus was not activated. Fortunately, gas is a very easy category to max out, so I didn’t miss out on much.
The general theme for Q2 bonuses is home improvement. So, if you are planning on painting, upgrading your furniture, or doing a project that involves Lowe’s or Home Depot, you’re in luck!
Discover It offers a lot of great features including Shop Discover, great 5% cash back categories (especially online shopping for Q4), and a very generous sign-up bonus without an annual fee. They also give you your FICO score for free, on every statement. If you are looking to get a cash back card, I would highly suggest Discover It. You can sign-up here.
I have all three of the cards mentioned in this post and Chase Freedom is my absolute favorite. It does not offer a free FICO score like Discover It does and it only has a $100 sign-up bonus, but this card earns Ultimate Rewards instead of cash back. Ultimate Rewards points are not very valuable if you do not have a Chase Sapphire Preferred or an Ink Bold/Plus. However, when you do they can be transferred from your Freedom to your Ink Bold then to 10 different travel partners, which makes them very useful! I also like to use the Ultimate Rewards Mall, because I prefer UR points to cash. You can sign-up here. (Disclaimer: This is an affiliate link. Thank you for your support!)
The Citi Dividend is the easiest card to max out the 5% cash back limit, since pharmacies are one of the Q1 categories. I maxed out my Citi Dividend in the first two weeks of January. So, I would highly suggest this card solely for its manufacturing ability. You can sign-up here.
I would suggest getting all three of these cash back cards at one point or another, since they all lack annual fees and give you 5% cash back on rotating categories. If you want one to start with, I would suggest Discover It since it has the most features and the highest sign-up bonus. If you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred or Ink Bold/Plus, definitely get the Chase Freedom, so you can transfer your UR points. If you are looking for a card that can be easily manufactured with get the Citi Dividend.
If you are looking to maximize your 5% cash back check out this post.