Weekend Update

A couple of quick updates:

    American Express OPEN savings for gift card purchases:Several days ago I wrote about leveraging American Express OPEN savings to buy gift cards in my post about how to maximize points at Amazon.com, but I hadn’t actually tried it at that point.  So, I ran out and bought a $100 Amazon gift card at OfficeMax using my Amex business card. This morning I logged into my Amex account and saw that $5 in savings was now listed in my OPEN report! This means that I’ve verified this technique.

     

    Magazines.com 80X: A contributor on Milepoint reports successfully double dipping at magazines.com through the Ultimate Rewards Mall for a combined 80 points per dollar! I’m working on replicating this and will hopefully have more news and details soon.
    UPDATE: the same contributor just posted that he had misread the results.  He only received the original 40 points.

About Greg The Frequent Miler

Greg is the owner, founder, and primary author of the Frequent Miler. He earns millions of points and miles each year, mostly without flying, and dedicates this blog to teaching others how to do the same.

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Comments

  1. For me, definitely 500 UR points..With BA I can fly roundtrip to NYC pretty much anytime(including someday /next day flights) for 9000 BA miles (9000 UR points = 9000 BA miles)
    Typically the flight is $200 or if last minute…MUCH more :)..

  2. Thanks for the tip. Bought Ebay and Amazon today using my OPEN Ax. Wish I could buy them online, but they only sell their own brand online.

    • Shruti: yes, it is necessary to buy gift cards in person.

      Rik: I’m still trying to figure out if there is a repeatable pattern to getting the double dip to work. It’s not at all clear

      Bangkokiscool: the fair trading price of Ultimate Rewards is 1.31 cents so I agree with Happy that the UR points are worth more. Don’t forget though that with the OPEN approach you get 5% back AND 1 point per dollar from your credit card spend. So, depending on what Amex card you would use and how much you value the points, the OPEN approach might be better. Its very close either way.

      Scottrick: thanks!

      Trvlguru: yep, I wish I could find an online option too. On the other hand, I’m lucky enough to have an OfficeMax near my work, so it’s pretty easy for me to stop in and by some gift cards.

    • Noob Traveler: Thanks! Unfortunately, it turned out that the Milepoint contributor was incorrect about receiving 80X points. I’m continuing to research options here and hope to publish a viable double dip soon.

  3. @FrequentMiler: So with buying the Amazon $100 gift card you earned $5 back AND 100 MR points? And did you happen to try buying a prepaid cash card or think that will work? I think I am going to give it a shot this week.

    • Everett: Yes, you got the right idea except that instead of MR points I got Delta miles since I used my Platinum Delta Skymiles card. Since I plan to hit the bonus level of spend, each dollar spent on that card gives me 1.4 SkyMiles and .4 MQMs (elite qualifying miles) for a total fair trading price/value of 3 cents per dollar. So, I essentially get 8 cents rebate for each dollar spent at OfficeMax on gift cards (or anything else) as long as I spend $100 or more. I haven’t tried a prepaid cash card yet, but I see no reason why that wouldn’t work. I have a blog post planned about exactly that!

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