Many different blogs wrote yesterday (I read about it first at Mommy Points) about the fact that Staples now has $200 Visa gift cards for sale online. This is a big help for people who want to earn big points, especially Ultimate Reward points.
Chase Ink Bold/Ink Plus – 50,000 Ultimate Reward Points after spending $5,000 in 90 days – Link (this link takes you to Frequent Miler’s credit card page where you can sign-up through his links. I do not get anything for directing you to his links but would like to help a fellow blogger)
How Many Points?
To really make this profitable, you need to have a Chase Ink Bold or Chase Ink Plus. This is because these gift cards are available for sale at Staples, an office supply store, and the Chase Ink products give 5x points for purchases at office supply stores. Furthermore, since these cards are available online, you can purchase these cards through shopping portals to earn even more points. The portals do have language that states that bonus points will not be earned for gift card purchases, but many people, myself included, have seen bonus points post. This is especially true for the Ultimate Rewards Mall portal.
So, how many points can be earned? It is a straight 5X points per dollar when you use your Chase Ink Bold or Chase Ink Plus. Plus, you can earn various amounts of either cash back or points when you go through a shopping portal. The Ultimate Rewards portal has 2X points currently, so, if you shop through it to get the cards, you will receive a total of 7X points. To put it plainly, you will receive 1,448 Ultimate Reward points for each $200 card (because it comes with a $6.95 fee).
Let’s examine the math a bit more – for each $200 Visa gift card that you buy with your Chase Ink card through the Ultimate Rewards portal, you will earn 1,448 points. It will cost you $6.95 as a fee for each card. Here is how the value of those points break down:
- If used for gift cards or a statement credit – $14.48 ($7.53 after subtracting the fee)
- If used for travel through Ultimate Rewards – $18.10 ($11.15 after subtracting the fee)
- If used for transfer to Southwest Rewards – $22 ($15.05 after subtracting the fee)
- If used for transfer to United (conservatively) – $26.06 ($19.11 after subtracting the fee)
- If used for transfer to Hyatt (conservatively) – $24.61 ($17.66 after subtracting the fee)
- If used for transfer to British Airways (conservatively) – $21.72 ($14.77 after subtracting the fee)
As you can see, for one card, you can make between $7.50 and $19! Purchasing additional cards, will multiply that number. If you opt for statement credit, you can make $7.50. Not bad!
How To Do It
There are several options to shop through for portal points. Some are cashback but there are reports that they may not give the cashback when used on gift cards. If you are interested in trying it, you can try Swagbucks (currently 6X Swagbucks to be used on gift cards), Discover cashback (5% cashback) – these are not affiliate links.
Many different airline portals have been reported to work, but I would recommend going with the Ultimate Rewards shopping mall for the 2X UR points. There is more flexibility with them and many people (including me) have received the points.
What To Do With Them
You can use these cards in many ways. One of the easiest ways is to use them for all of your purchases. In addition, here are some other options:
- Use them as debit cards with a pin to load your Bluebird card at Wal-Mart
- Use them as debit cards to purchase money orders to deposit in your account
- Use them with Amazon Payments to send money to others at no fee (up to $1,000 per month)
What Is The Risk?
Is there a risk in buying hundreds, or even thousands of these Visa gift cards? I would say no if you are moderate in your spending. Since you can use them for Amazon Payments at the very least, you can easily clear the cards at the rate of $1,000 per month per Amazon account (if you have friends that can help you). You can also use them to purchase money orders from Wal-Mart at less than $1 each. You can then deposit them into your bank account. So, you should not have to worry about it. I have bought quite a few and looking forward to getting some more at some point.