News from OfficeMax, Amex, and #MileMadness


A nice OfficeMax trend

Office Depot used to be my favorite office supply store for earning 5 points per dollar with my Chase Ink cards, but they’re now mostly dead to me.  Staples is my new everyday, reliable, favorite (see “Staples Rocks”).  However, OfficeMax has become a great friend that I like to visit for about a week at a time once a month or so.  Why?  Check out this roughly monthly trend that I derived from my Quick Deals page:

Starting with Black Friday, last year, OfficeMax has offered discounted gift cards in-store roughly once a month.  The Black Friday deal was only for one day, but the rest of the deals were for a full week.  I like this trend!  This (and many stackable Staples’ deals) is one of the reasons why the Ink Plus and twin, Ink Bold, continue to be my favorite cards.  Don’t forget to take your Ink to OfficeMax this week to take advantage of this week’s deal, but please leave a few Visa gift cards on the rack for the rest of us.  I’m still working on the minimum spend for my latest Ink Plus signup (see “Earning points while my better half waits”) and I’m trying to earn 5X for all $5K worth of purchases.  That way, I’ll not only get the 50K point signup bonus, but another 25K for spend, as well.  Deals like this OfficeMax one are a fantastic way to earn 5X without losing out on gift card fees.

UPDATE: Yesterday I received tweets from people around the country who found that OfficeMax was unable to process the current $15 of $250 deal.  Some people found capable managers who were able to manually process refunds, but others weren’t as lucky.  Hopefully this issue will be solved soon!  In the meantime, Bengali Miles Guru suggests asking OfficeMax staff to call corporate where they’ll be told to give the refund in cash.

#milemadness has begun!

On Saturday, March 1, contestants for the first ever Manufactured Spend tournament began spending their $5K bankroll. You can bet that contestants will be spending a lot of time at OfficeMax this week!

Keep up with the action on Twitter by following: #milemadness.  For more details, see:

Players will compete week to week throughout March.  Data will be collected from each player at the end of each week and I’ll post scores and summaries of the action each Monday. 

New Amex cards earn Membership Rewards

View from the Wing details new Amex cards: Amex Everyday and Amex Everyday Preferred.  It sounds like both of these cards are great (but not mind-blowing) additions to the Amex lineup, especially for those who prefer Membership Rewards points to cash.  I’ll detail my thoughts about these cards in a future post, but for now I’ll leave you with my two misgivings:

  1. The cards are credit cards and, as such, contribute to the 4 card limit that Amex enforces with most (but apparently not all) customers.
  2. I will have to completely re-write my “How to keep your Membership Rewards” post.

Unfortunately, these cards won’t be available to the public for another month or so.

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