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Current Credit Card Bonus Categories: Discover, Chase Freedom, Citi Dividend

Oct. 10, 2019
Cash Back Credit Cards, Credit Cards, Rewards Credit Cards
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Cards with bonus categories come with some of the highest credit card rewards rates available.

  • Both Chase and Discover offer credit cards with 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in spending per quarter in bonus categories that change each quarter and 1% back on all other purchases. To get the bonus cash back, you have to opt in, or “activate,” the category each quarter.
  • A Citi credit card with similar terms — the Citi® Dividend Card — is no longer available to new applicants. It pays 5% in rotating bonus categories that you activate and 1% on other purchases. There’s no quarterly spending limit, but the total cash amount of cash back you can earn in a year is capped at $300.

Previous years are listed below the current categories, so you can see what’s been offered in the past … and what might be again?

Current bonus categories on Discover cards

Discover bonus rewards categories for 2019
Q1 (Jan. 1 – March 31)• Grocery stores
Q2 (April 1 – June 30)• Gas stations.
• Uber and Lyft.
Q3 (July 1 – Sept. 30)• Restaurants.
• PayPal.
Q4 (Oct. 1 – Dec. 31)• Amazon.com.
• Target (in store and online).
• Walmart.com.

» MORE: NerdWallet’s best Discover credit cards

Current Chase Freedom® bonus categories

Chase Freedom® bonus rewards categories for 2019
Q1 (Jan. 1 - March 31)• Gas stations.
• Tolls.
• Drugstores.
Q2 (April 1 - June 30)• Home improvement stores.
• Grocery stores.
Q3 (July 1 – Sept. 30)• Gas stations.
• Select streaming services.
Q4 (Oct. 1 – Dec. 31)• Department stores.
• PayPal.
• Chase Pay.

» MORE: NerdWallet’s best Chase credit cards

Current Citi® Dividend Card bonus categories

Citi® Dividend Card bonus rewards categories for 2019
Q1 (Jan. 1 - March 31)• Gas stations
• Home Depot
Q2 (April 1 - June 30)• Drugstores
• Fitness clubs
Q3 (July 1 – Sept. 30)• Airlines
• Car rentals
Q4 (Oct. 1 – Dec. 31)• Best Buy
• Department stores

» MORE: NerdWallet’s best Citi credit cards

Categories from previous years

2018 credit card bonus categories

DISCOVER CARDS 2018 BONUS CATEGORIES

  • Q1: Gas stations and wholesale clubs
  • Q2: Grocery stores
  • Q3: Restaurants
  • Q4: Amazon.com and wholesale clubs

Chase Freedom® 2018 BONUS CATEGORIES

  • Q1: Gas stations; internet, cable and phone service; and purchases via Chase Pay, Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay.
  • Q2: Grocery stores, PayPal, Chase Pay
  • Q3: Gas stations, Lyft, Walgreens
  • Q4: Department stores, wholesale clubs, Chase Pay

Citi® Dividend Card 2018 BONUS CATEGORIES

  • Q1: Gas stations, car rentals.
  • Q2: Home Depot, home furniture stores
  • Q3: Airlines, movies
  • Q4: Best Buy, department stores

2017 credit card bonus categories

Discover cards 2017 bonus categories

  • Q1: Gas stations, ground transportation, wholesale clubs
  • Q2: Home improvement stores, wholesale clubs
  • Q3: Restaurants
  • Q4: Amazon.com, Target

Chase Freedom® 2017 bonus categories

  • Q1: Gas stations, local commuter transportation
  • Q2: Grocery stores, drugstores
  • Q3: Restaurants, movie theaters
  • Q4: Walmart, department stores

CITI® DIVIDEND CARD 2017 BONUS CATEGORIES

  • Q1: Home Depot, home furniture stores
  • Q2: Drugstores, fitness clubs
  • Q3: Airlines, Hilton hotels
  • Q4: Best Buy, department stores

2016 credit card bonus categories

Discover cards 2016 bonus categories

  • Q1: Gas, ground transportation
  • Q2: Restaurants, movies
  • Q3: Home improvement stores, Amazon.com
  • Q4: Amazon.com, department stores, Sam’s Club

Chase Freedom® 2016 bonus categories

  • Q1: Gas stations, local commuter transportation
  • Q2: Grocery stores, wholesale clubs
  • Q3: Restaurants, wholesale clubs
  • Q4: Department stores, wholesale clubs

CITI® DIVIDEND CARD 2016 BONUS CATEGORIES

  • Q1: Home Depot, home furniture stores
  • Q2: Drugstores, fitness clubs
  • Q3: Car rentals, Hilton hotels
  • Q4: Best Buy, department stores

2015 credit card bonus categories

Discover cards 2015 bonus categories

  • Q1: Gas, ground transportation
  • Q2: Restaurants, movies
  • Q3: Home improvement stores, department stores, Amazon.com
  • Q4: Amazon.com, department stores, clothing stores

Chase Freedom® 2015 bonus categories

  • Q1: Grocery stores, movie theaters, Starbucks
  • Q2: Restaurants, Bed Bath & Beyond, H&M, Overstock.com
  • Q3: Gas stations, Kohl’s
  • Q4: Amazon.com, Audible.com, Diapers.com, Zappos.com
    (Note: In a special promotion offered in 2015 only, the $1,500 quarterly limit on spending eligible for bonus rewards was reset on Nov. 23, meaning that Chase Freedom® cardholders got a “fresh” $1,500 to spend for bonus cash back. Further, from Nov. 23 to Dec. 31 of that year, Amazon.com spending earned 10% cash back, rather than 5%.) 

CITI® DIVIDEND CARD 2015 BONUS CATEGORIES

  • Q1: Macy’s, home furniture stores
  • Q2: Home Depot, home and garden stores
  • Q3: Airlines, Hilton hotels
  • Q4: Best Buy, department stores

2014 credit card bonus categories

Discover cards 2014 bonus categories

  • Q1: Restaurants, movies
  • Q2: Home improvement stores, furniture stores, Bed Bath & Beyond
  • Q3: Gas stations
  • Q4: Online shopping, department stores

Chase Freedom® 2014 bonus categories 

  • Q1: Grocery stores, movie theaters, Starbucks
  • Q2: Restaurants, Lowe’s
  • Q3: Gas stations, Kohl’s
  • Q4: Amazon.com, Zappos.com, select department stores

CITI® DIVIDEND CARD 2014 BONUS CATEGORIES

  • Q1: Macy’s, drugstores, fitness clubs
  • Q2: Home Depot, home furniture stores, home and garden
  • Q3: Car rentals, Hilton hotels, theme parks, movie theaters
  • Q4: Best Buy, department stores, toy stores