1. American Express has an interesting new sign-up bonus for the Business Platinum card provided you can manufacture spend at office supply or hardware stores (see below for an example). The sign-up bonus is 120,000 Membership Rewards after $15,000 in spend in three months and 10x on spend in several manufactured spend friendly categories for up to $7,500 in spend. To maximize:

    – Spend $7,500 at office supply or hardware
    – Spend another $7,500 elsewhere

    You’ll earn 202,500 Membership Rewards, or slightly more if you spend the second $7,500 in a 1.5x category.
  2. The Paceline credit card is shutting down on March 31, so go ham on 5% cash back through then. What are they going to do, close your card? Oh wait.

    It’s unclear what will happen to any owed Apple Watch statement credits after March 31, but my guess is they’ll honor them eventually, perhaps after being forced to do so by the CFPB.
  3. Plenty of datapoints have been shared about the new state of Metabank Pathward gift cards and the short summary seems to be: Pathward has implemented a card issuer block on transactions using a PIN over approximately $500, and they limit PIN transactions at a single POS to once every few minutes (perhaps in the 5 to 10 range).

    I’m going to go ahead and say that Friday’s hypothesis that “spite” was Pathward’s driving factor just got even more likely.
  4. FM notes that IHG has a Diamond status challenge for status through the end of 2025. The challenge requires eight paid nights by the end of March.

    The best Diamond benefits are: breakfast at full service hotels, increased points earning, and the ability to match to top tier in other hotel programs. Also once at an IHG near the Atlanta airport I got an elite gift bag with peanut butter sandwich crackers and skittles, so you might get, err, lucky and get that too.
  5. Office Depot / OfficeMax has a sale on Visa gift cards, $15 off of $300 or more through Saturday. To maximize:

    – Link your cards to Dosh
    – Try for multiple transactions, back-to-back
    – Explore what happens when you scale a single transaction
    – Look for the Chase Offer for 10% back at Office Depot and activate it

    (Thanks to GC Galore)

The result of a fever dream for an overworked IHG front desk agent in College Park, GA.

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