Back in the day, the US Mint was the manufactured spend technique. The Mint used to sell dollar coins for $1 each with free shipping. And, they accepted credit cards. There’s nothing better than buying money with money and earning credit card rewards along the way. Then, in mid 2011, the free shipping offer was rescinded and it no longer made economic sense to buy coins just for the rewards.
Now, thanks to this thread on Flyertalk, I’ve learned that there is once again an offer for Mint coins sold at face value with free shipping, credit cards accepted! The catch? Well, there are a few…
Catch 1: You’ll need a Canadian address
This Mint offer is from the Royal Canadian Mint. Free shipping applies only to addresses in Canada.
Catch 2: Limit 3 per household (per coin)
In any single order, you are limited to 3 of any given coin. Luckily, coins range in value and type quite a bit, so it’s possible to load up your cart with up to 9 $100 coins, 6 $50 coins, and 15 $20 coins for a total of $1500 worth of coins… theoretically. Unfortunately, you may find many sold out (see image).
The above limits are per-order. It may be possible to make multiple orders to get around the stated limits.
Catch 3: Banks don’t have to accept them
According to this article, there is a difference between circulating and non-circulating legal tender, and these coins are the latter. This means that these coins cannot necessarily be easily spent, or traded at banks. Apparently banks do have procedures for converting non-circulating legal tender to cash, but it may not be as painless as one would hope. The bank in the article, for example, has a process that requires keeping the coins on hold for six months.