Free points, cash back, and rewards from Staples

UPDATE: Use code 59367 for an additional $15 off!

This deal is good through 12/2/2013.  Rebate ID=13-78325. 

Staples has a new Free After Easy Rebate software download.  These are usually a great way to make progress toward meeting credit card minimum spend thresholds or to earn points and cash back for buying software regardless of whether you actually want the software.  This time, the total spend is pretty small ($125), but its better than nothing…

The idea is to go through an online portal to and buy software for which you’ll eventually get all of your money back.  The best current portal options offer 5% cash back via uPromise or ShopDiscover. Once at, buy three copies of this product for a total cost of $135, then apply coupon code 18359 to reduce the total price to $125 (coupon has expired).  If you use your Chase Ink card you will earn 5 points per dollar since this is an office supply purchase.  In other words, for $125 $135 you could earn a rebate of $135, plus 625 points for free, plus $6.25 cash back from a portal, plus $6.25 in Staples Rewards, plus up to $3 worth of Plink points (see “Plinking Staples“).  If you value all of those rebates at face value, then this deal could mean earning a profit of $25.50 $15.50 in addition to the 625 free points.

Staples has an amazingly easy “Easy Rebate” system. Once you purchase the software, they send you a rebate link via email. You click the link, fill out a little bit of info and you’re done. Note that you will have to wait a while, though. It takes 4 to 6 weeks to receive your rebate.  Usually Staples gives the option of receiving either a check or a Visa gift card, but this time unfortunately the Visa gift card is the only option.

If you have questions, please see the Q&A section at the bottom of this post.

Here are the steps to follow:

Step 1: Choose a shopping portal:

You can get additional points or cash back by starting with a shopping portal. Some good choices are uPromise 5%, and ShopDiscover 5%.  Click through the chosen portal to

Step 2: Add three copies of “Kaspersky Internet Security for Windows (1 User) [Download]” to your cart:

TIP: Search for item 275509

The rebate’s terms & conditions say:

Limit 3 rebates per name / address / household.



Step 3: Check out

TIP 1: If you have Staples’ rewards money, use it! If you have a Chase Ink card that gives 5X for office supplies, use it!

: Your state may charge sales tax. If you know someone in a state that doesn’t charge sales tax for downloadable internet orders (CA, NH, etc.), then set their address as the delivery address and no tax will be charged. This is a download only purchase anyway, so nothing will really be delivered. I picked “deliver to store” and picked a store in New Hampshire. Of course, there won’t really be anything to pick up.

TIP 3: Apply coupon code 18359 to get $10 off your order!   UPDATE: Use code 59367 for an additional $15 off!

Step 4: Submit Easy Rebates

You will receive an email from Staples with a link in it for submitting the rebates . It’s easy!  Even though you ordered 3 items, you’ll only have to fill out the rebate once.

TIP: Usually, the software rebate can be changed from a Visa gift card to a check, but with this rebate they only allow the Visa gift card option.



A lot of trouble, little gain

  • Q: Isn’t this more trouble than its worth?

  • A: If you’re asking the question, then yes it’s more trouble than its worth.  In the past there have been similar deals, though, where you could buy hundreds of dollars worth of free after rebate items to earn thousands of points and extra cash back.  It might be worth doing this one to get the hang of it so that you’re ready next time.

Same Item

  • Q: In the past I’ve bought the exact same item for the rebate. Can I do this again?

  • A: Yes. As long as the rebate number is different from your past purchases, you should qualify for a new rebate. This rebate is different from any I’ve posted about in the past.

Per Household Limit

  • Q: Can I buy a copy for every friend I know?
  • A: I don’t recommend it. I know at least one person who tried to do something similar, but Staples did not approve the second set of rebates. I don’t know how they figured it out.

Status = Researching

  • Q: The status of my order says “researching”. What’s up with that?
  • A: Staples needs to verify your order. Sometimes this happens if you have the wrong email address or phone number on file. Simply give them a call or do an online chat with them to verify the information they need. Once that is done, they’ll confirm the order.


Rebate Submission

  • Q: If I buy all three copies at once, should I submit one rebate form or three?

  • A: Just submit one rebate form per order even if you bought 3 copies in one order.

  • Q: Are you sure?  I tried tracking my rebate and it looks like I’m only going to get one rebate for $45.

  • A: Yes, the rebate tracking display is confusing.  If all goes as expected, you’ll get the full $135 rebate.

  • Q: If I submit just one rebate form, will I receive 3 $45 gift cards or one $135 gift card?

  • A: You should receive one $135 gift card.

Rebate Time

  • Q: How long will it take for my rebate to arrive?
  • A: The Staples web site says to expect 8 to 10 weeks. In my experience, it’s usually a bit faster than that, but it’s best to expect the full wait just in case.


  • Q: Do I have to download this software so that I can qualify for the rebate?
  • A: No! I didn’t download any of the software I’ve bought in the past, but all rebates processed successfully.

Double Dip

  • Q: Can I double dip by buying a Staples gift card through a portal and then go through the portal again to use the gift card?
  • A: No.  Even though Staples gift cards can now be used online (that wasn’t true previously!), Staples wouldn’t allow me to apply gift cards to this order for some reason.

Do Good

  • Q: I don’t need this software. Is there someone I can send the license keys to that could make good use of this stuff?
  • A: Check with your local schools or libraries. If someone can make good use of this software, then great!
Chase's 5/24 Rule: With most Chase credit cards, Chase will not approve your application if you have opened 5 or more cards with any bank in the past 24 months. Some exceptions that are NOT subject to the 5/24 rule include: British Airways, Hyatt, IHG, Marriott Business, and Ritz Carlton.

To determine your 5/24 status, see: 3 Easy Ways to Count Your 5/24 Status.
Chase 5/24 semantics ("Subject to" vs. "Count towards"): Most (but not all) Chase cards are subject to the 5/24 rule. That means the rule is enforced in making approval decisions. In other words, you probably won't get approved if your credit report shows that you opened 5 or more cards in the past 24 months. Meanwhile, most business cards (such as those from Chase, Amex, Barclaycard, BOA, Citi, US Bank, and Wells Fargo) are not reported on your personal credit report. These cards do not count towards 5/24.


Chase IHG Card is not subject to 5/24 so it's easy to get. But after approval it will count towards your 5/24 total.

Chase Ink Business Preferred is subject to 5/24, so you likely won't get approved if over 5/24. If you do get approved, it won't count towards 5/24 since it won't appear as an account on your credit report.
Amex 5 credit card limit: If you apply for a new Amex credit card, you may get turned down if you already have 5 or more Amex credit cards. Both personal and business cards are counted towards this limit. Charge cards, though, are not counted. You can apparently get as many charge cards as you’d like, and the number of charge cards you have does not affect your ability to get up to 5 credit cards. Authorized user cards are also not counted towards the 5 credit card limit. See also: Which Amex Cards are Charge Cards vs. Credit Cards?
Applying for Business Credit Cards

Yes, you have a business: In order to sign up for a business credit card, you must have a business. That said, it's common for people to have businesses without realizing it. If you sell items on eBay, for example, then you have a business. Similar examples include: consulting, writing (e.g. blog authorship, planning your first novel, etc.), handyman services, owning rental property, etc. In any of these cases, your business is considered a Sole Proprietorship unless you form a corporation of some sort.

When you apply for a business credit card as a sole proprietor, you can use your own name as your business name, use your own address and phone as the business' address and phone, and your social security number as the business' Tax ID / EIN. Alternatively, you can get a proper Tax ID / EIN from the IRS for free, in about a minute, through this website.
Chase Ultimate Rewards points are super valuable and super flexible. At the most basic level, points can be redeemed for cash or merchandise, but you'll only get one cent per point value that way. A better option is to use points for travel. When points are used to book travel through the Ultimate Rewards portal, points are worth 1.25 cents each with premium cards (Sapphire Preferred or Ink Business Preferred, for example) or 1.5 cents each with the ultra-premium Sapphire Reserve card. Another great option is to transfer points from a premium or ultra-premium card to an airline or hotel program when high value awards are available (see this post for details). If your points are tied to a no-fee "cash back" Ultimate Rewards card, then first move those points to a premium or ultra-premium card before redeeming them in order to get better value.
Amex Membership Rewards points can be incredibly valuable if you know how to use them. In general, if you use Membership Rewards points to pay for merchandise or travel, you won't get good value from your points. One exception is with the Business Platinum card where you'll get a 35% point rebate when using points to book certain flights. This gives you approximately 1.5 cents per point value, which is pretty good. If you don't have the Business Platinum card, then your best bet is to transfer points to airline miles in order to book high value awards. More details can be found here: Amex Transfer Partners.
Editor’s Note: This guest post was written by the same guy who showed you how to fly round trip to Africa (DC to Senegal) for 50,000 points. You can find John’s website and award booking service here:
-Greg The Frequent Miler

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.

More articles by Greg The Frequent Miler »

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63 Comments on "Free points, cash back, and rewards from Staples"

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Thanks. Already did this order.


I bought one boxed in the store yesterday. Already submitted the rebate for it. Can I buy 2 more download copy and submit another rebate? Thanks.


Wondering the same thing as this poster above me.


Guess I wasn’t paying attention. California orders are posting with tax =| (Irvine, CA)


Interesting…So it posted with $10 tax on that $125 order making it $135 total (i’d break even with the rebates).

My billing and delivery is in California (irvine, ca). I guess this is just the “estimated tax” and just pending. I’ll see what they end up charging me after it clears.

I did some research with BOE.CA.GOV and it is correct that CA residents shouldn’t be taxed on downloadable purchases:
If you did not sell or receive any tangible personal property (for example, you downloaded the software electronically from the retailer’s website), the sale or purchase is not subject to sales or use tax (and there is no TTA at issue).


I’m in Irvine, CA too. I will see if I get charged sales tax. I usually go to the Woodbury Staples in Irvine. Nice people working there.


Hi. Just did it and it sent me a rebate link in the order confirm… Upromise, plink, staples rewards, discover card… ShopDiscover portal says not eligible on software… I live in California so did a pick up in a Portland store to save tax. Thanks!


CA stores are charging sales tax. I switched to NH 🙂


Ultimate Rewards is offering 2 extra points for Staples. If you use the $10 coupon code, will it forfeit the points?


nope. Feel free to use the UR mall


Aside from the main topic but I noticed there are currently fewer selections of plink reward gift cards avilable on their webiste.(No Amazon gift card!) If not temporary, this devalues plink points a lot. Did you notice this?


Looks like the rebate form now says 8-10 weeks, FYI.


Doug: this has previously happened several times. Each time, Plink eventually added more cards, including Amazon. They are probably just sold out for now.


If the goal is to increase spend then what is the point of putting the $10 off coupon code? Am I missing something?


You get the $135 rebate whether you use the coupon or not. So if you do use the coupon code, you put $125 of spend on the card and get 10 free dollars. If you don’t use the coupon code, you put $10 more spend, but don’t get free money besides points/portal bonuses.

Chris Y

Can I use an ink card and still get discover cash back? Has anyone tried this?


I’m in Hawai’i, no Staples here. They won’t ship to Hawai’i, and require a shipping address to complete the order. I’m tempting to use a bogus address (or a US mainland relative’s) for the shipping info, but afraid that’s where they’ll send the gift card, too. Never ordered from Staples before, anyone have experience on locales where they don’t have a physical store or ship to and have advice?


Assuming/hoping that I can pick a CA store as a “pickup” point and that they’ll mail the card to me at my HI address.


When you submit the rebate you can indicate where you would like the card sent. All else equal I would pick a store in a state without sales tax, though.


Mahalo Claire, saw someone’s post above about specifying an Oregon store. Good to know, thanks.


Thanks! Quick question. Why not combine with item # 266543 (quickbooks) which is a $90 value & is free after rebate? I can’t see where T&C limit you to 3 items. The only thing is people would be hit with tax, but wouldn’t the plink/staples/portal points make up for it?

Also, it seems to make sense to split your orders up into separate purchases so as to maximize plink points (0.3 pts/ dollar vs 0.24 pts/dollar vs 0.2 pts/dollar).

Please correct me if I’m wrong…


I’m not in front of the ad right now, but be very careful of the quick books rebate. I believ it is a “mail in rebate” not an “easy rebate”. In the past you actually had to install and use the software and jump through some hoops to get that rebate. It wasn’t possible for me to do it and I was almost out the money. I’m not positive this situation is the same, but I think it is. so, get a copy of the rebate form before you buy and make sure you will be able to fulfill all of the requirements.



Just 2 thing to clarify.
1. you buy 3 copies in one order
2. When you submit the easy rebate, did you see a total of $135 rebate or did you see only $45 in rebate.. I’m asking because I only saw $45 in rebate


That coupon 18359 did not work. I got an error message. I was also charged tax ($10.13) for CA. My total came to $145.13 from $134. I still ordered and submitted the easy rebates.


Coupon 18359 is not working.

Elena G

Coupon 18359 expired 12/1/13 Has anyone found another one?


[…] Staples FAR (free after rebate) software + Plink. Thank you Frequent Miler! Time to get out those Ink cards. If you don’t get have a Plink account, sign up here and get 300 points (as far as I know this is the best current sign up offer). […]


I applied the coupon 18359 for my order which was processed. But this morning I got an email message from Staples that my order is going to be delayed because of the requirement, “Only one dollars off coupon per purchase may be applied”. They want me to call in and tell them if I want to cancel the order or remove the coupon.

In my cart there had been an automatic coupon applied for the software that appeared to be the software discount…


I just have a one question. I found the shopdiscover term which says

“Offer not valid on Tablets, GPS devices and GPS accessories, PDA’s, cameras (including camcorders), scanners, and digital frames. Also not valid on computers, software, hardware, drives, memory, printers, copiers, fax machines, custom printed items, premiums and items sold on”

So can I still get the cashback from this deal?


I saw the same as chiyu (above), only saw the $45 figure when I submitted. Anyone with experience with these rebates who can confirm it will actually rebate on all three purchases?


It has been posted on an active message board that Visa prepaid cards over $10 can no longer be paid by check as of last week. This will put a damper on all future Staples deals. These Visa rebate cards do not come with a PIN.

And new online coupon code for $15 off $100: 66851, exp 12/2.


“but this time unfortunately the Visa gift card is the only option.”

it is not this time. this has changed for good on Nov 26. rebates under $10 are check only, over $10 Visa gift cards, unless only Staples card specified. no more paypal.
there is a special SD thread just about this change.


Just purchased 3 copies of Kaspersky, used coupon code 59367 and my order was $120, no shipping or tax. Looks like Staples fixed the sales tax problem for CA address. Filled out the FAR rebate and will be getting $135 (3 x $45) on a Visa gift card in the next 8-10 weeks. Happy Cyber Monday!


Anyone else not having their order show? The fine print states that orders may be delayed to check for fraud, and mine has not shown in a couple of hours. Just seeing if anyone else is experiencing this before I try ordering again.


I ordered last night and still haven’t gotten an email confirmation of the order, let along the easy rebate.


I have the confirmation with the easy rebate link – but only am getting $45 in total for all 3 copies! What do I need to do in order to either receive the full rebate or my money back on the 2 extra copies of software?


it will update shortly, just give it a few hours.


Whew! Thanks Lauren!


Ooops – still early! – Lantean. 🙂


I submitted my order, got the order confirmation but my order is not showing up in the system. I was able to submit the easy rebate though. Very strange.


Now my order is showing at $155.85 when my conformation page showed 120 after the discount and no easy rebate for the programs.


Just got off the phone with Staples, they have canceled my order and refused the easy rebate option on the products. They said they will send out cancellation emails today.


Thanks for all your advice all year long.


[…] gift cards for purchasing 3 copies of Kaspersky Internet Security 2014.  Here is the original deal details.  Hint: 15+ twitter private messages and 3 $45 Staples coupons to make it […]


[…] Staples FAR (free after rebate) software + Plink. Thank you Frequent Miler! Time to get out those Ink cards. If you don’t get have a Plink account, sign up here and get 300 points (as far as I know this is the best current sign up offer). […]


I received the $135 Visa debit Reward Card months ago and have just realized I have not used it. Can a pin be added to liquidate via Bluebird? If not what is the best way to liquidate this?