Stephen P posted a nice deal in our Frequent Miler Insiders Facebook group today: Portal payouts at HP.com are up to 14 miles per dollar today. This will stack nicely with the current Amex Offer for a $75 statement credit with a purchase of $350 or more. If you were to make a $350 purchase today, you could earn at least 4,900 miles and spend a net of $275. Or, you might do even better.
Step 1: Amex Offer at HP.com
Amex currently has a widely available offer for $75 back on $350 or more at HP.com. See our Complete Guide to Amex Offers for information on how to sync this offer to multiple cards — I’m using the mult-tab method myself. On it’s own, this offer is decent — good for more than 21% back. And it stacks with portal payouts….
Step 2: Shop through a portal
Portal payouts are higher than normal today for HP.com. According to CashBackMonitor.com, the American Airlines eShopping mall is offer 14 miles per dollar at HP. Alternatively. United is offering 12 miles per dollar and Alaska and Delta are each offer 10.
Additionally, remember that a purchase of $50 or more should get you an entry into the current drawings for 100,000 miles and $2500 at American, United, and Alaska shopping portals. See: Win 100,000 miles: enter by shopping or by mail for more details).
Step 3: Double dip
According to Stephen in the Frequent Miler Insiders group and most (though not all) results in our Laboratory, portals usually pay out on the purchase and use of HP.com gift cards. This means that you could theoretically go through the American Airlines shopping portal and buy $350 in HP eGift cards to earn 4,900 miles. Then, go back through the American Airlines shopping portal again to use your gift cards and earn another 4,900 miles. We can’t guarantee this will work — portal terms often exclude the purchase of gift cards, and in this case they do exclude the purchase of gift cards. If your purchase doesn’t automatically track, your chosen portal won’t be any help. Also be aware that portal terms state that HP.com will pay out on no more than 10 orders per month (and that anything beyond 10 orders will be automatically cancelled).
Entries in each sweepstakes
If you’re interested in the sweepstakes, you could buy your $350 in gift cards in 3 separate transactions through 3 separate portals to maximize your entries today. As I read the terms of the 100,000 mile drawings, all purchases made in a single day from a single merchant will count as a single purchase — so the most you’ll get credit for is 1 purchase at HP.com through each portal (American, United, and Alaska). Since American has a higher payout, I would do this:
Buy a $50 eGC through the United Shopping portal: Earn 12x (600 miles) and 20 entries in the sweepstakes
Buy a $50 eGC through the Alaska shopping portal: Earn 10x (500 miles) and 20 entries in the sweepstakes
Buy a $250 eGC through the American shopping portal: Earn 14x (3500 miles) and 20 entries in the sweepstakes
The terms of the Amex offer state that you must spend $350 in “one or more transactions”, so I would expect the three purchases above to trigger the $75 statement credit.
Double dip totals
If you purchased the gift cards as outlined above, you would earn 4,600 total miles on the purchase of the gift cards. If you then went through the American Airlines shopping portal to use those gift cards, you would get another 4,900 miles ($350 X 14). Of course, not all miles are created equally and you may prefer to make your purchases more heavily with Alaska or United. However, pretending for a moment that all miles are equal, that’s 9,500 miles. You’ll theoretically end up with $350 worth of stuff and 9,500 miles for $275. Of course, that’s assuming that you’re able to spend exactly $350 on stuff (unlikely) and that you’re not paying additional sales tax (even more unlikely) and it is relying on the double dip to work (uncertain). Assuming it does work as intended, that’s a pretty solid deal. Even if we just value the miles at 1.5c each, they’re worth around $142.50. Of course, that’s variable depending on how you use your miles — but it’s a good rate of return on that amount of spend.
What should you buy at HP.com?
This really depends on you. If there is something you need that sells for around the $350 price point, this looks like a pretty good rate of return. Even if you only for 14 miles per dollar and the $75 statement credit, it’s pretty good. If you get the additional miles for the double dip, you’re in great shape.
If you’re looking to resell something, I’d take a look at the “accessories” department. HP sells a variety of headphones, bluetooth speakers, computer mice — I haven’t poured through looking for something to sell today, but I imagine with some work you can find some items where you can come close to breaking even with your $275 cost and potentially pick up more than 9,000 “free” miles (not including your time cost).
This is a pretty good deal when you stack the portal payouts with the Amex Offer. If the double dip does work out (and Stephen reports that he’s already got miles pending from previous gift card purchases this week), it will be a very solid deal. Thanks to Stephen for pointing this one out!