1. Kroger is having a weekend 4x fuel points promotion running Friday through Sunday on third party gift cards and fixed value Visa and Mastercard gift cards. Resale markets have nearly recovered to rates found before Kroger started banning accounts because, like the documentary Jurassic Park taught us, life will find a way. (Thanks to GCG)
  2. Plastiq has filed for bankruptcy and already has a vulture company that’s agreed to scoop up its assets, pending court approval. The payment processor was once a great arrow in the manufactured spender’s quiver, but the company’s unstated mission was to perfect the art of a slow death spiral and they succeeded spectacularly. Their bankruptcy shouldn’t be surprising ay after they failed their merger with the Colonnade SPAC which caused the SPAC to die too.

    Plastiq wasn’t without utility even as recently as this week, but maybe that’s changed. Personally I’m not going to send any further payments through the platform, but you’re all adults; do what’s best for you. (Thanks to VFTW)
  3. Chase increased the bonuses on its personal Southwest cards through June 26, and each includes a single use promo code for up to eight passengers for 30% off of a paid or award booking.

    Rapid Rewards Plus: 60,000 bonus points and 30% off code
    Rapid Rewards Premier: 60,000 bonus points and a 30% off code
    Rapid Rewards Priority: 60,000 bonus points and a 30% off code

    These offers are available via referral too, so make sure you use a friend’s referral link and make their day too unless you’re referring from another player.
  4. Do this now: Register for Wyndham’s summer promotion for 5,000 bonus points on two night stays, 10,000 bonus points on three night stays, or 15,000 bonus points on four night or longer stays through September 5. If you’re a Wyndham card holder you’ll get a one-time additional 5,000 bonus points on your first stay too. Complex much?

Plastiq obviously was part of this manufactured spender’s quiver.

  1. Meijer Stores have a promotion for $10 worth of MPerks points with a $75 Happy, Choice, or One4All gift card, limit one per MPerks account.
  2. Rakuten has 3x at Walmart in-store and in theory it’s “unlimited use”, but you do need to re-add the offer to your account an hour after each purchase. Also in theory gift cards are excluded, but, uh, yeah.

    Also, watch out for what is apparently a new trend at Walmart, because reasons. (Thanks to brykupono)
  3. Check your American Express offers for a couple of Marriott offers that should stack and are gamable:

    – $100 off of $300 at US properties
    – $100 off of $500 at North American properties

    Another option is staying at a Marriott and using these organically, but, uh, yeah again.
  4. In addition to last week’s American Express personal Green heightened offer that included a statement credit, referral links are now seeing similar offers and it seems to be widely targeted:

    – Platinum: 150,000 Membership Rewards and a $200 statement credit
    – Gold: 90,000 Membership Rewards and a $200 statement credit
    – Blue Cash Preferred: $400 cash back and a waived annual fee the first year

    Referrers are currently seeing a low of 10,000 Membership Rewards and a high of 35,000 Membership Rewards for referring.

Happy Monday!

Soon to be unleashed at Walmarts across the country. (Thanks to Country_Points)

  1. Kroger has an in-store 4x fuel points promotion on third party gift cards and fixed value Visa and Mastercard gift cards running today only. There are scalable plays in these sales, and sometimes happy accidents too. Always be probing.

    Kroger used to sell US Bank gift cards, then switched to Pathward, and now seems to be switching back to US Bank, double check what you’re getting when you buy.
  2. Kroger online has 5% off of Visa and Mastercard fixed value gift cards through Tuesday with promo code FIVE2023. The real win here is that these purchases earn fuel points, if you’re not going to use those in some way this isn’t a deal because you’re not getting special coding.

    These are US Bank gift cards.
  3. The American Express personal Green card has a historically high sign-up bonus available directly and through referral link for 60,000 Membership Rewards after $3,000 in spend in six months, but you’ll also get 20% back on travel and transit purchases for the same time period with a maximum statement credit of $200.

    Pre Dodd-Frank this was a great card to sign-up for, get the sign-up bonus, and then upgrade to a Gold or a Platinum immediately thereafter for another bonus. Now though, consumer cards can’t have an increased annual fee in the first year, so no upgrade is available until year two. It remains a way to slowly build a stable of Gold cards though after the first year. (Thanks to DoC)
  4. Staples has fee free $200 Mastercard gift cards starting Sunday and running through the following Saturday, limit eight per transaction. As always, try and run multiple transactions back to back to minimize your time at Staples stores.

    These are Pathward gift cards so have a liquidation plan in place.

A stable of American Express Gold cards located somewhere in a Kroger parking lot.

  1. JetBlue has an award ticket sale of 20% off for bookings completed today for travel through June 21. It does exclude transatlantic and Mint redemptions though.
  2. Office Depot/OfficeMax stores have $15 off of $300 or more in Visa gift card purchases in store through Saturday. For best results:

    – Link your credit cards to Dosh
    – Try for multiple transactions back-to-back
    – Try for the lower fee Everywhere cards, assuming you can liquidate them
    – Experiment with bigger stacked bonuses

    These are Pathward gift cards and are throttled for PIN transactions at $480 in aggregate per store per six minutes generally.
  3. The Wyndham Business Earner card’s sign-up bonus has been increased to 75,000 bonus points total, 50,000 after $3,000 in spend in three months, and another 25,000 after $10,000 spend in the first year.

    This card is largely (in)famous for it’s (1) 10% rebate on award stays, and (2) 8x earning at gas stations, which are both reasons that this one’s probably an Unsung Hero candidate. (Thanks to Rob)
  4. The Citi Shop Your Way Rewards Mastercard, already an Unsung Hero, has sent a new round of offers for online spend by June 14. Offers we’ve seen:

    – $30 statement credit after $500 in spend (MS Ninja)
    – $50 statement credit after $750 in spend (me)
    – $70 statement credit after $1,000 in spend (Jacob M)
    – 225,000 bonus Shop Your Way points after $570 in spend (Sollavec)
  5. Some Hy-Vee stores have $30 off of $500 Mastercard gift cards in store starting tomorrow and running through Tuesday (ok, technically it’s $10 off of $150 but it stacks). Check your local Hy-Vee ad to see if your store is participating, and if so go ham. (Thanks to jerseyguy195)
  6. American Express has an (apparently targeted) transfer bonus from Membership Rewards to Cathay Pacific Asia Miles running through the end of the month for between 10% and 20%. To see if you’re targeted, you’ll need to login and navigate to the transfer page.

    Asia miles have good access to alliance award tickets before other partners, but their cancellation policy isn’t as generous as US carriers. (Thanks to DoC)
  7. Citi added Accor Hotels as a ThankYou Point transfer partner at a 2:1 ratio, which matches Capital One’s transfer ratio.

A different kind of deluge.

  1. Remember yesterday’s heightened Hilton bonuses? Well, they’re now available by referral too so you can collect a referral bonus in addition to the sign-up bonus with another player in the mix.

    Additionally, another link surfaced in several places for the business card for 180,000 points after $2,000 in three months and another $8,000 within six months. This link is obviously a higher initial bonus but doesn’t include the initial free night certificate which makes it much less appealing than the other link for me. That said, if you don’t need the certificate maybe this one makes sense. We’re all adults here right?
  2. FM reports that Lyft now supports pre-ordering rides for flight arrivals at LAX, ORD, and MDW, with more airports coming online in the future.

    This is barely a travel hack, but useful because when you pre-order your ride, you lock in a (presumably) non-surge price and you get to jump the queue of riders waiting after you land.
  3. There’s a new American Express offer for 20,000 Membership Rewards after $1,000 spend on Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines. Likely this offer will still work if you break the correlation which tends to be simple with cruise lines. (Thanks to Larry)

Ok, yes we’re all adults here but I guess that doesn’t always mean what I think it means.

First, a bit of unsolicited advice if you’re having problems with Citi and chargebacks: Send a them a certified letter. With that out of the way:

  1. The American Express Hilton Business card has a new sign-up bonus for 150,000 Hilton points and a free night certificate after spending $4,000 in three months. This is one of my favorite AmEx cards to churn, especially because you get a second and third free-night certificate at $15,000 spend and $60,000 spend respectively.

    So far this offer isn’t showing up via referral, but that may change in the next couple of days so if you can wait to apply I’d definitely give it a week to make sure you get the referral bonus too.
  2. The American Express Hilton Surpass personal card has a new sign-up bonus too, for 130,000 Hilton points and a free night certificate after spending $2,000 in three months. You can get an extra free night certificate on $15,000 spend with this one too, but I like this card a lot less – the bonus isn’t as good, there’s no $60,000 spend certificate and it takes up a 5/24 slot.

    This also doesn’t show up via referral, so sit on it for a few days too.
  3. Discover has a 15% bonus on airbnb redemptions with earned cash-back through the end of May.

    Since apparently I’m oversharing about what I like today, I like this one too for occasional airbnb stays and it beats the usual 5.687% cash back play.
  4. I know it’s obtuse, but we’ll have a post-mortem one day. In the mean time though, one of our favorite crypto plays has effectively stopped working for our favorite discount payment method, it’s not just you.

Happy Thursday!

When crypto goes bad.

  1. American Express is sending targeted upgrades from the Delta Business Platinum to the Delta Business Reserve with 50,000 bonus SkyMiles after $5,000 in spend. If you’re a Delta status junkie, the best play is to quickly spend through your two status boosts on the Business Platinum, upgrade, then spend through your four status boosts on the Business Reserve. Alternatively to offset the cost of the upgrade, you can sell the Reserve status boosts since they’re giftable. (Thanks to SideShowBob233)
  2. There’s a great sign-up bonus for $1,000 statement credit after $5,000 in spend on one of the more stupidly named credit cards on the market, the AmaZing Business Credit Card. It’s available to residents of Arizona, California, Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, or Texas.

    I’ve applied for this card in the past and it’s nothing like what you’d normally expect. You’ll get a PDF application mailed to you after filling out the online one. You’ll request a specific credit limit, a banker will call you and talk about your business, and then you’ll need to email or fax in paperwork. It’s still worth the hassle for 20x though. (Thanks to DoC)
  3. Meijer stores have a promotion for $10 off of $150 or more in Visa gift card purchases through Saturday, limit one per account. Meijer sells both Metabank Pathward and Sunrise Visa gift cards, so choose wisely like this was a class final and your grade depended on it. (Thanks to GCG)
  4. Safeway, Albertsons, and Vons stores have a coupon for $10 off of groceries with the purchase of a $50 Lowe’s gift card (and some other lower resale value, stupider cards too). The $10 off expires in seven days but as long as you can use the coupon it’s a profitable play with Lowe’s cards selling at approximately 86% of face. You’ll also earn Just4U rewards which can be turned into Alaska miles, and of course grocery bonused credit card spend too.
  5. As of this writing, Dell is 15% or 15x on the Rakuten portal. Time to liquidate!

A Zion’s bank banker discusses the AmaZing Business Credit Card.

  1. Apparently everyone’s been in the know but me on the Bilt card’s unofficial sign-up bonus that’s been running for months: 5x for up to $12,500 in spend in the first five days after card activation for a total of 50,000 bonus points.

    The late news was enough to push me into an application after sitting on the side lines for years on this card. Application status, asked no one? Pending. (I wouldn’t be a blogger if I didn’t whine about trivial things occasionally right?)
  2. Kroger stores have a 4x fuel points promotion on third party gift cards running through Tuesday, May 16. They’ve also got a 4x promotion on Friday only for all purchases excluding gift cards, but historically they’re bad at these.

    Fuel points account shutdowns seem to follow a sinusoidal pattern, and right now we’re near the bottom for smaller sized fuel points accounts for unknown reasons. Run with it while you can.
  3. Southwest’s shopping portal has a few new spend bonuses for cumulative portal spend through May 12:

    – 500 bonus points after $50 in spend
    – 1,000 bonus points after $150 in spend

    Unfortunately giftcards.com remains absent from airline shopping portals. I need one of you to call the Cartera CEO, who wants to volunteer?
  4. MyGiftCardsPlus, or MGCP as the brevity inclined call it, has 10% back on up to $1,000 in Delta gift cards and 10% back on up to $500 in airbnb gift cards through “while supplies last”, which I assume means until this afternoon.

    Side note, MyGiftCardsPlus is linked to UPromise, and despite popular opinion to the contrary, UPromise can deposit earnings directly to your checking account without being enrolled in college or getting involved in a 529 or similar plan.

A shirt with a catchy slogan for the brevity inclined.