Portals less woe-full, Gas discounts, no 6% cash back at Safeway, Amex gift cards 3% cash back, and more

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A number of miscellaneous updates today…

Portal woes no more?

At the beginning of the month, I posted “Portal woes” where I wrote about people waiting for portal points to post for Amex gift cards bought through the Barclaycard portal, and Kohl’s purchases to post through the Ultimate Rewards Mall.  In that post I optimistically wrote “my best guess is that portal payouts are simply delayed.”  Now, in the past couple of days I’ve heard from many people that their points have finally posted.  If you’re still waiting for yours, hang in there, there’s a good chance those points will appear soon.

BP and Speedway discounts from Kmart

This offer has been around for quite a while, but I’ve never written about it before because I didn’t know how widespread it was or how long it would last.  I still don’t know how long this will last, but I do now know how widespread it is.  Thanks to a reader for pointing me to this PDF:

KmartSave30Cents

When you spend $50 or more at Kmart (at the locations listed in the PDF), you’ll receive a coupon for 30 cents off per gallon on gas at either BP or Speedway.  And, this does work when purchasing gift cards at Kmart.

With Speedway, at least, you can use up to 3 of these coupons with one fill up (so, up to 90 cents per gallon savings).  And, the maximum discount is for 15 gallons of gas.  Also at Speedway you have to pay at the register first before pumping gas in order to apply the coupon(s).  I find that irritating.

Many people have been using Sears, Lands End, and Kmart gift cards in-store at Kmart to buy other gift cards (including gas station gift cards) to get these coupons.  Note though that many Kmart stores no longer allow buying gift cards with gift cards.  Also note that if they do allow it, it will likely require a manager override, which will irritate the heck out of the half dozen people in line behind you.

5% cash back at Chevron with Discover

In the category of probably too late to be considered better late than never: A reader has alerted me to this offer for Discover Cardholders:

DiscoverChevron5pct

Get a 5% cashback bonus at Chevron and Texaco with your Discover card.  You must sign up.  And, you must make all purchases by March 31.  This offer is limited to $250 in purchases, so at best it is worth an added $12.50 in cash back.  I probably wouldn’t have posted this if I had done the math before writing the rest of this copy.  Sorry.

Amex not awarding grocery bonus for gift card purchases at Safeway?

A reader alerted me to a troubling new finding.  He says that he and two other friends have experienced this same issue.  When using the Blue Cash Preferred card at Safeway to buy gift cards, he reports getting the usual 1% cash back, but not the 5% cash back bonus that is usually awarded for grocery purchases with that card.  He says, however, that purchases in which gift cards and “a lot of groceries” were combined did still result in the 5% bonus (6% overall cash back).  No word yet on whether this affects other Amex cards (e.g. “Old” Blue Cash) or other grocery stores.  Developing… This offer has expired

Amex gift cards 3% cash back is still alive

As I reported in this Quick Deals post, the cash back site BeFrugal is currently offering 3% cash back when you click through to buy American Express gift cards.  I recently placed a $6K business card order and used code SYNCGIFT for fee free cards.  The correct rebate amount has now shown up within my BeFrugal account as tracking appropriately.  Note that the “Estimated Confirm Date” for my cash back is 5/17/2014, so it will be a while before I actually get my hands on that cash.  If you want to sign up for BeFrugal, consider using my referral link on my Sign-Up Links page. Once you make your first purchase through BeFrugal, I’ll get $5 and then I’ll be rich.

Yes TopCashBack now offers 5% at Staples…

A number of readers have pointed out to me that TopCashBack has raised their Staples rebate back up to 5%.  Well, that’s nice, but the same rate has long been available through ShopDiscover and uPromise.  ShopDiscover cash back is sometimes worth much more than its stated value (see  “Rediscovering Discover Rewards”).  And, I’ve had great success in always getting cash back via the uPromise portal and Staples regardless of what I’ve bought or how I’ve paid.   So, personally, I don’t see any advantage of going with TopCashBack in this case.

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