Sears 10X: Leveraging the Deal

10 Ultimate Rewards points per dollar is a great return for Sears purchases.  In this post I’ll list numerous ways to leverage this deal. 

Background

This month, Chase’s Ultimate Rewards Mall is offering 10 points per dollar for Ink and Sapphire cardholders when shopping at Sears.com.  The deal is good through 8/31/2012. 

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Leveraging the Deal


Shop
This is almost too obvious, but it needs to be said.  If you have Sears’ purchases you were going to make anyway, shop through the Ultimate Rewards Mall to earn 10 points per dollar (in addition to the points earned automatically with your credit card).

Tips for saving money:

  • For free shipping, you can usually select “pickup in store”.
  • Look for coupon codes before you shop.  One great one available today only is “AUGUST35” which will give you $35 off a $350 order (hat tip HikerT).  Note that the code will not work for buying gift cards.
  • If a competitor (with a physical retail presence) has a lower price, fill out the online Price Match form.  Sears will match the lower price and take an additional 10% off (hat tip MSPDeltaDude)
  • Make sure to signup for Sears’ Shop Your Way Rewards program.  You will earn points worth the equivalent of 1% of your order.

Buy gift cards
If you do not currently have a need to buy stuff from Sears, consider buying Sears gift cards instead.  The beauty of this is that you will get 10X now and have plenty of time to make purchases later.  The other big advantage is that Sears’ gift cards can be used in a variety of additional shops: Lands’ End, KMart, Sears outlet, My Gofer, Crafstman, Kenmore, etc.  If shopping at KMart, checkout Cuckoo for Coupon deals for some great bargains (hat tip IrishTiger).

Does the purchase of gift cards count for 10X?  YES. In the recent 15X deal via the Southwest Rapid Rewards portal many readers bought physical and e-gift cards and received points for each.

Buy gift cards and upgrade
I have used Sears gift cards many times in Kmart and Sears to buy other gift cards.  In the past I’ve bought BP cards and EBay cards, although I noticed recently that my local Kmart no longer carries EBay.  Note the risk: some people have reported being unable to use gift cards in-store to buy other gift cards.  Your success will depend on the policies and cashiers at your local Kmart or Sears store.

Double Dip for 20X
This is one of my favorite tricks which I’ve done successfully at Sears.com many times.  The idea is to go through the portal once to buy gift cards (physical or email), then go through the portal again to use the gift cards for buying merchandise (no, you can’t buy gift cards with gift cards online).  The net effect is that you end up earning 20 points per dollar for your purchases!  The downside is that you won’t get purchase protection or extended warranty coverage that is given by many credit cards.  Caution: one reader has stated that Chase revoked their points for a purchase made with gift cards. I’ve never had anything like that happen so my guess is that it was a one time fluke, but be prepared for the possibility.

Double dip, buy and sell merchandise.  By finding deals at Sears.com for merchandise that can be easily resold via EBay, Amazon Marketplace, or Craigslist, you can potentially get Ultimate Rewards points at a very low cost.  The idea is to first double dip (buy gift cards for 10X), then buy re-sellable merchandise with the gift cards (for another 10X).  The last time Sears was at 10X in the Ultimate Rewards Mall, I earned almost 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points by doing this trick.  See “Mileage Run Shopping: Buying 162,000 Miles for $500” and “Mileage Run Shopping Results.”  In that adventure, due to the costs of buying and selling (taxes, merchant fees, shipping, etc.) I lost 17% of the money spent, but the points earned more than made up for that.  If you are a member of Sears’ Shop Your Way Rewards program, you’ll earn 1% back in the form of Sears credit!  Caution: many things can go wrong when buying and selling, so this option is not for everyone.  You may have trouble finding buyers, you may find merchant fees and other costs to be higher than expected, buyers may return items that can no longer be sold as new, etc.

 

My Take

I find Ultimate Rewards points hugely valuable so I will definitely play the “buy and sell” game.  I’ll follow up with tips about how to find re-sellable items as well as some of the dangers and headaches involved in reselling.  I’m heading out for vacation today so I don’t have time to jump in yet, but when I’m ready I’ll probably target earning 120K points or so.  That would mean purchasing and then spending $6K worth of gift cards.  Luckily I have all month to get this done. 

How about you?  What are you going to do to leverage this deal?

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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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287 Comments on "Sears 10X: Leveraging the Deal"

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Anita
Guest

T3pleShot, was it just the Max shipping program that got shut down, or did they shut down your shopyourwayrewards, too? Like Jay, I’ve got a boatload of SYW points after all of my purchases this month.

I was lucky enough to hit VIP Gold this month, and August happens to be my birthday month, so I *should* be getting 10% rewards on all my Sears purchases in addition to my double dips with UR 🙂

Anita

T3pleShot
Guest

@Jay, @Anita,
They have only revoked the SYW max shipping previlege. My sears.com account, SYW account/rewards still show up as available (As far as I can see in the profile, I havent tried applying them towards any puchases).

IrishTiger
Guest

Anyone receive points for Craftsman products? Just saw it is excluded in the fine print…just like gift cards…?

FrequentMiler
Guest

IrishTiger: I think you are safe buying Craftsman products as long as they are sold on sears.com. The problem would be if you go to craftsman.com

jay
Guest

I made a $4000 purchase at Kohls.com via the UR Mall on 08/24 and paid for it with a Chase Sapphire cc and a $6000 purchase at JCpenney via the UR Mall on 08/25 and paid for it with my Amex card.
.

On the 25th when I spoke to a Chase CSR about my Kohls.com purchase, she said that she could see my Kohls.com AND my JCpenney purchase being tracked.
Heck, I didn’t even mention the JCPenney purchase.
So, all’s well in my world.
.

Fast Forward to 3 hours ago. I haven’t received any email confirming the points, so I decide to write a Secure Message to Chase.
.

Get a reply back saying that
A. NOTHING tracked.
B. The Kohls.com didn’t track and since I didn’t use the UR mall (according to them) I wouldn’t receive any points.
C. Purchase made with a NON-Chase cc were not eligible for UR points.
.

So I call Chase.
The agent listens to everything that I have to say and then tells me that point C is 100% correct. I begin explaining that it’s not. I point out a $11.99 purchase made with a gift card that I received points for.
.

I’m placed on hold.
She comes back and tells me that there’s NO way I used the UR mall. I tell her that I did.
She says..now get this… IF I use the UR mall, then when I checkout, it would automatically checkout using the Chase cc. The very fact that it let me use any CC means that I was on JCpenney NOT through the UR mall. What….!!!???
I try explaining to her that that’s not true. And she gets very upset at me because I’ve been telling her that (“that’s not correct/true) in reply to almost everything that she’s been telling me.
.

I’m placed on hold again.
She comes back and tells me that it says right there on the UR mall “Check out with your Chase card and your extra points will automatically appear on your statement.”
I tell her that that’s just a recommendation and that nowhere does it say that NOT using the card will result in me NOT getting the points. And that there’s nothing mentioned in the T&C.
And that I have proof that Chase has given me points before…
She’s getting frustrated now with me.

.

I’m placed on hold again.
She comes back and says that She can’t help me any more and that she refuses to discuss this topic any further!!!!!
.

So, I tell her- forget about the JCpenney purchase. I’ll deal with that later.
I ask her how come I didn’t get any points for the Kohls.com purchase?
She says to wait till the end of my statement and IF I don’t receive the points by then, Chase will “look into it”
.

Things don’t look good.

And what really interests me is how did that first CSR see BOTH the purchases? And what happened to those tracking tickets.

jay
Guest

okay…that was formatted differently when I was typing it.
Can the Gods please create a few paragraphs in there? 🙂

Anyway, TL;DR- I’m having problems with Chase. Again.

jay
Guest

That’s actually the third rep I’ve spoken to today.
.
And they’ve all been telling me the same thing.
.
What’s REALLY pissing me off is that the first agent I spoke to, a couple of days ago could see both purchases and now suddenly they’ve BOTH disappeared.

harvson3
Guest

Data point: Ordered a gift card August 25. Bought some clothes using said gift card on August 30. Value of $67.xx each time, and got 20x back.

FrequentMiler
Guest

harvson3: Great!

jay
Guest

@harvson3- what browser do you use?

I’m out of ideas.
Chrome doesn’t work for me.
Firefox doesn’t work…

What the hell am I supposed to use?!

Anita
Guest

Party time 🙂

My August Chase statement just closed and a nice bundle of points posted based on my many purchases in August 🙂

I got a refrigerator, dryer, grill and mattress. In addition to good prices on a bunch of stuff I wanted anyway (I hesitate to say needed), I have $230 in SYW Rewards and 100K+ UR points.

Happy, happy, happy!

Gabriel
Guest

Anita…you mentioned that AUG was your birthday month? Did you get the 10% bonus SYW rewards on your purchases as well? I ask because my SEPT ones haven’t posted yet…wondering how long it might be or if I need to *nudge* sears in the right direction

FrequentMiler
Guest

Anita: Awesome!

harvson3
Guest

@jay – I use the Internet Explorer on our home computer that deletes all cookies when you close it and is used for nothing else but online portal shopping. I clear the cookies and start from scratch once I find what I want using Chrome.

jay
Guest

Thanks. Will try IE now. 🙁

Anita
Guest

Gabriel,

I have not gotten my 10% bonus on my August purchases. I became VIP Gold halfway through the month, but I should get 10% on everything after that. I’ve emailed them twice but no answer. I think it is time to call them.

Anita

Anita
Guest

Regarding SYW Rewards birthday 10% bonus, I called their special VIP phone number today 🙂

Rep immediately said “yes, I see you’ve received your 10% birthday bonus”. Unfortunately, he hadn’t taken more than 5 seconds to look at my account and he was incorrect – I’d received 10% for a single item because I used a coupon they mail you when you hit VIP. I’m hoping to double up on that one purchase.

After a 10-15 minute hold, he contacted their support team who will look into it and get back to me within a week.

I’m sure I’ll get the bonus after they review. Will post back.

Anita
Guest

SYW Rewards birthday bonus (10% on all purchases) just posted.

Note that when I got my welcome email to VIP Gold SYW status, it included a one-time use 10% SYW coupon code. I used that on my mattress, so I’d already gotten 10% bonus on that.

When they gave me the birthday bonus, I got ANOTHER 10% SYW Rewards on the mattress purchase (essentially 20% cash back) in addition to my UR double dip.

Anita

FrequentMiler
Guest

Anita: Sweet!

STvr
Guest

Double dip broken? So far my 10x for $10K of gift cards has posted, about three weeks later. But my 10x for the tablets has NOT posted.

FrequentMiler
Guest

STvr: I’m still waiting for some of my purchases too. I don’t think it’s broken. I think it is just very slow.

CaptainCool
Guest

@STvr: I think you’ll have to fight with your points. I’m currently trying to get my $6000+ worth of points from them right now. I purchased part gift card/part CSP. They manually credited points paid w/ CSP but are giving me grief for the gift card use….

Anyone able to get points manually or after the fact when using a gift card?

pointsmachine
Guest

So many guys call to chase in turns, is it possible that all the CSRs and supervisors know what is going on outside and makes more restricted rules?

Stvr
Guest

Here’s my data. I’m really starting to get anxious.

August 21: Two $5K gift card purchases
August 22: Two $5K electronics purchases with gift card
September 6: Gift card purchases points post
???: Electronics purchases points???

I have called Chase asking if those purchases tracked and they act like I’m crazy.

FrequentMiler
Guest

CaptainCool: I haven’t tried that in quite a while, but I was successful in the past after multiple calls.

pointsmachine: It’s possible, but I think they would be making a mistake if they do so. Chase gets paid when people use their portal so customers should get their points

Stvr: I’m getting nervous too — also regarding a large merchandise order. My guess is that for some reason large orders are requiring manual approval somewhere along the line (Sears?) and whoever is responsible is getting hammered with work.

Blue
Guest

I had to call Chase to get my points yesterday. This was for a purchase made on August 17. When I called, I was told that they do not have a record of my purchase. I informed them I went to UR portal, and specifically clicked on Sears link which then took me to Sears.com and made my purchase. I asked why that was not tracked, and they had no idea why but proceeded to credit me my points.

This experience has me nervous about future opportunities similar to this one. I know it works for other folks, but it isnt working for me

Nick
Guest

I called/emailed finally got 10x points for the $1500 gc purchase. Did not get any double dip though. Also, with a second purchase the $185 e-gc did not track and the second dip purchase with the gc did. So got credit for the e-gc as well. A third purchase did not get credit for order placed using e-gc, but got credit for the order that contained the e-gc purchase. Everything done on each order was the same, so it totally beats me as to what tracks vs does not.

FrequentMiler
Guest

All of my Sears double-dips have now posted. I’m now only waiting for credit for more gift cards I ordered at the end of August. I plan to use those to buy gas gift cards at Sears & Kmart.

Stvr
Guest

Can you give me a timeline, FrequentMiler? I purchased $5K of tablets on August 22 and now it’s September 13.

Jay
Guest

I made a $4000 purchase at Kohls.com via the UR Mall on 08/24 and paid for it with a Chase Sapphire cc and a $6000 purchase at JCpenney via the UR Mall on 08/25 and paid for it with my Amex card.
.
Just received the email telling me that I’ve received points for the JCpenney purchase. This was made through My Chase Freedom UR mall and paid for with my Amex card.
WOOOOHOOOO!!!!
.
No word as yet about the Kohls purchase that I made through the UR mall and paid for with my Chase Sapphire credit card!!
.
Points posted for the JCpenney purchase 20 days later. And this is AFTER ALL THE CSRs told me that they COULD NOT see any transaction and nothing had tracked. Guess it just took some time.
.
Hoping that the Kohls purchase posts when my statement closes in 5 days.
.
Will Report back with further updates…
.
P.S- I used Firefox. Cleared the cache and cookies before using. And I disabled ALL add-ons.

GMASH
Guest

Congrats Jay !

Would you mind sharing what you bought from JC Penny? Was that something you really needed or there is some nice thought behind that 🙂

Jay
Guest

Actually this was an experiment. I bought platinum earrings. I wanted to see if the points would post or not…because the last time I used UR mall for Sears, I didn’t get the double dip.
No points posted for the purchase made with the gift cards. I lost about $600 on that deal.
.
So I decided to make a large purchase using a different browser and see if the points would post or not.

So far the results are successful. I am going to return the earrings. If the points get deducted, I don’t mind because I don’t deserve them anyway. If they don’t get deducted, I shall consider that Karma. 😀

FrequentMiler
Guest

Jay: Great info, thanks for sharing!

GMASH
Guest

Thanks for sharing Jay!

Quick question – when you return u’ll get 6K worth of gift cards…wat do u plan to do with that..or is there a neat trick with that too 🙂

btw..you guys rock!!

Jay
Guest

Oh as I mentioned earlier…I made both purchases using a credit card.

So when I do the return, it’ll go back to the credit card.
I’m 99.99% sure that the points will be deducted. let’s see.

I do NOT recommend buying things JUST to return them in order to earn points. It’s selfish and bad karma as far as I’m concerned.

GMASH
Guest

I agree Jay buyig for returning is def not a good practice at all.

question though…how did u get the double dip if u bought using ur CC. I understand u first bought GC using ur CC and then bought the product with some portion of the charge on ur CC again.

Jay
Guest

@Gmash: It wasn’t a double dip. It was a straight up purchase to verify 2 things.

1. Do points from large purchases through the UR mall using the intended (in this case Chase Sapphire) credit card post?
Result – Sofar NO… Haven’t received any notification. Chase says nothing tracked.

2. Do points from Large purchases through the UR mall using a DIFFERENT credit card post?
Result- SUCCESS! Used my AMEX and the points posted.

Gabriel
Guest

HAH! I now find myself in the boat of my first transaction NOT posting in the UR Mall Earn Activity after 3 days. And go figure, it’s for some sizable purchases (but nothing larger than i’ve already done). A $850 e-GC and a $1100 camera on 9/13 (the purchase on 9/12 posted). My question to everyone here, what’s the biggest gap you have in Sears purchases on your UR Earn Activity log? I.E. the difference between “Transaction Date” and “Posted Date”. Obviously some people have had to wait 3 weeks to get their points to show up, but is there still a 3 week time frame displayed in the UR Mall? I also wonder if this has anything to do with any previous orders being cancelled. I just recently had one cancelled (not by my own doing…by sears’s idiocy) and wonder if that is what’s affecting some of the points posting.

FrequentMiler
Guest

Gabriel: Yes, I have one that shows 20 days between the transaction date and the posted date. That was my first gift card order. And, I have one that shows 16 days between the transaction date and the posted date. It was a large order in which I paid with gift cards. There were no cancellations involved.

hsinaz
Guest

I made two purchases in August last week. 2.5K each, first for sears gcs and second with gcs and a small amount. Both with Inkbold. No points. Enquired 2 times by phone and 2 times by SM and now they are asking me to send written letter to consider as “You have exasperated your phone and SM limits”? What?

FrequentMiler
Guest

hsinaz: I’ve never heard that one before!

hsinaz
Guest

I was surprised too. Looked through the whole page here and no one has been asked for that. I will try and call again hope for a better CSR.

Stvr
Guest

I am screwed! The points have not posted. Now I have $10K worth of merch.

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[…] gift cards when Sears again offered 10 points per dollar in the Ultimate Rewards Mall (see “Sears 10X: Leveraging the Deal” and “Sears 20X“).  This time, though, the secret gift card rack was […]

Andrew
Guest

Not sure if anyone is following this thread anymore, but thought I would post my final results as I just sold the last item I bought today. In August, I bought 9 Nikon cameras when there was a 10% off online promotion on cameras (4x D5100, 3x D3100 & 2x D3200). I bought $5K of gift cards and then spent $5,377.28 on the cameras (I missed out on almost 4,000 points by not buying enough gift cards). There were delays in seeing the points post, so I waited to sell until September, then I got busy with work, then Sandy hit (I live in NYC). I sold the D3100’s through Amazon fulfillment which I thought worked very well. I sold the other 6 through Craigslist which was a pain, but turned out OK. In hindsight, I should have just sent all the cameras to Amazon. Demand was strong for the D3100s and the D5100s but the D3200s really hurt my average. Final results: Spent $5,377.28 on cameras. Sale proceeds were $4,445,57. Loss = $931.81 plus $49.98 of Sears Shop Your Way Rewards = $881.83. I earned 95,689 UR points or essentially paid $0.9216 per point. Will I do it again? Probably.

Andrew
Guest

Oh yeah – thanks to FM for the idea. I will make sure to put my next round of card applications through your links.

Andrew

Chris F.
Guest

Has anyone received SYW Rewards points for purchasing gift cards, or just for merchandise? I saw the T&C state not eligible on GC purchases, and haven’t read explicitly where people did receive SYW points for these purchases.

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[…] looking to buy the best visit these guys for beginners, there is a lot to consider. First of all, the best cameras with the most […]