Category Bonus Comparison: Discover it vs. Chase Freedom

Advertiser Disclosure

Everyone loves a little extra bit of moolah in their pocket, especially in the form of cash back on your credit cards!  The Discover it® and Chase Freedom® credit cards do just that, in the form of their famous bonus categories that change each quarter.

These categories, a rotating list of stores and types of purchases, offers up 5% bonuses for the first $1,500 in purchases each quarter.  After that, the bonus will resort back to just 1% cash back for each dollar you spend in the category.  Let’s compare the two cards’ categories, and see which ones is right for you, shall we?

 

Discover It

As stated above, Discover It has four rotating categories each year.  This year began with restaurants and movie theaters.  Any purchase the company considered was a restaurant or a movie theater, you earned 5% cash back (up to $1,500).  This category ended on March 31st.

The current category that we are in is ‘home improvement stores, furniture stores, and Bed, Bath and Beyond.’  Think of it as sort of a spring cleaning event for you!  This quarter ends June 30th.

In the future quarter, from July 1st until September 30th, we only have a vague ‘Summer Fun’ category to go off of at this time.  In 2013, this category featured 5% cash back on gasoline purchases, no doubt to help families on their summer road trips.  Only time will tell which shops we will earn 5% cash back on this year, but check back here in May for the details!

The final quarter for this card is also just as vague, dubbed ‘Holiday Shopping.’  In 2013, this category was online holiday shopping, and featured Amazon.com, iTunes, and facebook purchases.  I would imagine that similar stores will offer up 5% cash back October through December this year!

 

Chase Freedom

The current Chase Freedom categories are similar, but with some key differences that you will want to take note of.  The past quarter from January until March was gas stations, movie theaters, and Starbucks stores.  In the current quarter, restaurants and Lowe’s home improvement stores are in the 5% bonus categories.  You must activate by June 14th, 2014 to reap the benefits!

In the summer months of July until September, you’ll have gas stations and Kohl’s stores.  You can begin activation on June 15th, 2014 for this category.

Finally, during the holiday months of October until December, Amazon, Zappos, and select department stores (click here for a list) will be offered up.  You can activate that category on September 15th, 2014.

 

Conclusion

So, which card is best for you in 2014?  It’s hard to say, since we don’t know exactly which stores Discover It will offer in the last two quarters of 2014.  We do know, however, all of the Chase stores.  I would say that both cards offer similar benefits, so it’s all about which categories appeal most to you and make the most sense for your personal spending.

Though we can’t yet see Discover it’s upcoming categories, looking at last year’s offerings should help you with what to expect.  It’s hard to go wrong with either card, as they both have solid benefits, including no annual fee and the ability to earn 5 points per dollar!

What do you think?  Which card tickles your fancy?

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