Amazon purchase -- how to maximize points.

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Miles/Points' started by LarryInNYC, Jun 22, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. LarryInNYC

    LarryInNYC Gold Member

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    I will soon be having a fairly large purchase ($1500) that I can make at Amazon. I would like to obtain the maximum number of points (probably UR points) and get any discount that's due me on the purchase.

    I do not have the Ink Bold but plan to apply tonight or over the weekend. My wife has the Chase Freedom.

    Am I correct in assuming that the maximum value can be extracted by:

    1. Buying Amazon gift cards through the UR portal from a retailer that receives 5x bonus on either the Ink Bold or the Freedom card and also has a high additional UR Portal points-per-dollar offer. (I assume I can get up to 10x, or 15,000 points, if I can find a good offer on the Portal).

    2. Going through a rebate website (if any support Amazon) to make the purchase.

    Any reason this shouldn't work. Is there a more efficient way to do it?
     
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  2. harvson3

    harvson3 Silver Member

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    Before you go out and apply for the Ink Bold, know that a) the big office supply stores (OD, OM, S), don't sell Amazon gift cards online. Whether you buy Amazon gift cards at your local supermarket/gas station on the Freedom depends on whether you've already reached the quarterly limit or are willing to wait until July 1.

    And the OD in Manhattan has reported to be frequently out/unwilling to sell the Vanilla reload cards that are so hot right now.

    And Hawaiian Airlines has a portal to get 1pt/$1 on Amazon purchases. Hawaiian Miles become Hilton pts at each 5K increment. There may be others; I don't know.

    Frankly, I'd recommend putting the $1500 toward meeting the minimum spending requirement on a new card with a large sign-up bonus. You (or your wife) would take the same credit pull you're already planning, but the pts/$ would be higher. (And yes, maybe the Ink Bold might work here, if you plan to meet the $10k spending line for 50k pts.)
     
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  3. jkchan83

    jkchan83 Silver Member

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    <Must have been beaten by harvson3 by just a few minutes. We have much the same advice.>

    Larry, I'm a huge Amazon shopper (love Prime), so I've been working for a while to get maximum points from Amazon.

    1a. Amazon gift cards are hard to find via the UR portal (not on Staples, Office Depot, or OfficeMax). It is much easier to find physical gift cards. Therefore, use the Ink Bold and go into a physical store to buy Amazon gift cards. They come in $100 increments, so that minimizes the number of cards you need. With the Ink Bold, you get 5 pts. per dollar at office supply stores. (7500 UR points)

    1b. If your wife activated the Chase Freedom 5X category for Q2, that includes grocery stores through June 30. Your wife could go into a grocery store that sells gift cards and buy physical Amazon gift cards. It rings up like a grocery purchase. This only works if your wife didn't use it for movie theaters or groceries in Q2 since the maximum 5X spend is $1500 per quarter. (Up to 7500 UR points)

    2. No online shopping portal or rebate site includes Amazon...except Hawaiian Airlines. I know that these aren't as valuable as UR points, but you should still shop through the Hawaiian Airlines eMarket to get 1 mile per dollar spent. Hawaiian Miles can also be redeemed on ANA, Delta, Virgin Atlantic, and Korean Air. They are also transferable to Hilton in 5000 mile increments at 1 mile:1 point. I have received miles, even when using a Gift Certificate to purchase items. (That's how the gift cards will appear in your account after you redeem them on Amazon.)

    Hope this helps.
     
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  4. rharrigill
    Original Member

    rharrigill Silver Member

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    Staples changed their T&Cs in the UR mall to exclude gift cards just last week, so the extra 5x bonus from there won't work for you. You can still go to the store and buy Amazon cards and get 5x if you have the Ink Bold, but it won't be 10x like you originally were hoping for.

    As harvson3 mentioned, you could go to a grocery store and get 5x there with your Freedom card, if you haven't reached the quarterly maximum. And if you have a grocery store like Kroger, you could reap some fuel points while you're at it.
     
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  5. daemon14

    daemon14 Gold Member

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    Regarding the "buying Amazon Gift Cards" at grocery store thing ... Amex Blue Cash Preferred ($75/year) gives 6% cash back at grocery stores. $1500 of gift cards would cost $1410 ($90 cash back). Just an FYI ... I prefer the 5x on the Freedom (since that's minimum 6.25% back with my Sapphire Preferred), but that's only certain quarters. I also don't see gift cards for every store I need at office stores ...
     
  6. jrp2

    jrp2 Gold Member

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    I usually just get the HA miles with my Amazon purchases. If you have the AMEX premiere gold card and buy amazon gift cards at a grocery store like Kroger, then you can get 2 MR pts / $1 I believe.
     
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  7. LarryInNYC

    LarryInNYC Gold Member

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    The Ink Bold is my next card anyway (and I've been trying to get the time to apply for cards all week, should have had it already). I won't have a problem meeting the spend due to extraordinary expenses in the next few months.
     
  8. LarryInNYC

    LarryInNYC Gold Member

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    So it sounds like 5X using Ink Bold to buy the gift cards in physical stores, followed by 1X Hawaiian portal miles is my best bet.

    My only other option is, I guess, to see if another, portal-able vendor gets stock of the computer I want in the relatively short amount of time I have to get it.
     
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  9. jkchan83

    jkchan83 Silver Member

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    The $1500 you're going to put on it from Amazon gift cards would still count toward hitting the minimum spend. :)

    I was thinking and there is another way to use the Ink Bold for this purchase: go to Office Depot stores and buy the Amex reloadable card and Vanilla reloads. Yes, there is a fee associated with getting the card and loading it (and a delay due to the max you can load per day), but the hassle will be outweighed by the 5X points. This process would also help you hit your minimum spend. I was reminded of this FrequentMiler post: http://boardingarea.com/blogs/frequentmiler/2012/05/01/one-card-to-rule-them-all/.
     
  10. LarryInNYC

    LarryInNYC Gold Member

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    How does this net any more points than buying Amazon gift cards at the same store? I'll still be spending $1500 on my Bold card, and getting 5x points.
     
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  11. jkchan83

    jkchan83 Silver Member

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    It doesn't net you more, but this would work if you can't find Amazon gift cards in the store (like harvson3 hinted at) and need to get the computer quickly (and still get 5X points). Plus, the extra fees will count toward your minimum spend. (I don't advocate paying extra fees just for points, but it does help minimize the impact of the fees.)
     
  12. harvson3

    harvson3 Silver Member

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    This is incorrect. Please re-read what I wrote.
     
  13. jkchan83

    jkchan83 Silver Member

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    Ah, missed the part about OD & Vanilla cards in Manhattan.
     
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  14. lotso-bear
    Original Member

    lotso-bear Silver Member

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    FYI. Not helpful at this point, but just so you know what was out there, in May 2012, OfficeMax had a promo for amazon GCs where you got $5 off $50. Using either the Ink Bold or AX Business Open card (any of them, SPG, Plat/Gold Bus), this means an amazon $1500 purchase could yield:

    -Ink Bold: 6750 UR pts, 1500 HA miles, saved $150 (paid $1350 for $1500 in amazon GCs) OR
    -AX SPG Bus: 1350 SPG pts, 1500 HA miles, saved $217.50 (paid $1282.50 for $1500 in amazon GCs)

    Sometimes you just have to load up on your amazon GC balances.
     
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  15. kadence

    kadence Silver Member

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    Thanks for all the helpful info in this thread.
     
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  16. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Just my 2cents; easiest way is to buy amazon gc from markets before june 30th on your wife's card to get whatever is left from the $1500 maximum; then when you recieve your Ink, get the remainder via GC from staples or something.

    Then use the HA portal to get at least 1500 miles from it.
     
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  17. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    So far i haven't really optimized my Amazon purchase earnings. I just started buying Amazon gift cards with my HHonors Amex to earn 6 pts per dollar. I haven't used the HA portal yet -- are there other ways to earn HA miles (other than flying them, which is unlikely to happen) to reach 5000 miles? If it takes me five years to get some Hhonors points out of them, I am not sure it's worth my time to worry about it.
     
  18. Singapore Flyer

    Singapore Flyer Silver Member

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    If you are willing you can use the HA search engine (yahoo) to earn one point for every 3 qualified searches. According to a comment post back a few months ago on MMS, you can earn up to 5000 HA miles per month even though the counter stops at a lower amount. I would chalk that up as YMMV. I have racked up over 5000 miles in about 8 months but I did it the sloooowwww way of a few 600-700 miles per month.
     
  19. daemon14

    daemon14 Gold Member

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    Bank of America / Bank of Hawaii credit cards. 35,000 signup bonus.
     
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  20. HaveMilesWillTravel
    Original Member

    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    Ok, that was too easy :). Thanks!
     
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  21. estnet
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    estnet Gold Member

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    It is one thing to maximize points but if you are buying a computer or other electronics don't u lose the extended warranty by using gift cards that you would get if u use the original card?
     
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  22. anabolism
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    anabolism Gold Member

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    As someone who loves Amazon Prime, I still always see if there's a portal retailer with the product I want at a decent price when it comes to sizable purchases. I'm fond of AA miles, so I check the AAdvantageEShopping portal, which has a search box to find products at any retailer. Also, you can get a free trial of Shoprunner, which gives you free two-day shipping like Prime that works at many retailers.
     
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  23. snugglening

    snugglening Silver Member

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    What I have done for my amazon purchase is longwinded,but..
    1.) Buy from newegg using a portal (usually UR points or AA miles) Check evreward
    2.)I buy FAR items from newegg (rebate gc or checks) then I deposit the checks and use the rebate cards to buy amazon e-gift cards sent to myself.
    3.) I then use Hawaii air shopping portal for amazon purchases.

    So every amazon pruchase I have made should equate to something like 2 AA miles or Chase points + 1pt/$ rewards card + 1 hawaii airmile.

    Yes it sucks waiting for rebates ,but hey you guys turned me into a junkie for miles and points!
     
  24. OceanBreezes

    OceanBreezes Gold Member

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    [QUOTE="snugglening"
    2.)I buy FAR items from newegg (rebate gc or checks) then I deposit the checks and use the rebate cards to buy amazon e-gift cards sent to myself.
    ![/QUOTE]
    What are FAR items?
     
  25. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Free after rebate
     

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