Chase recently unveiled a promotion where you can get 5% cash back on everything you purchase for 6 months. To the unaware, this is a huge opportunity to rake in some serious savings and money. All you need is a membership from AARP.org (you don’t need to be over 50 and membership is well worth the $16) and apply for the card here. Here are some ideas on how to maximize the value of this promotion.
Put every purchase you can on this card. This one is pretty obvious. You’re technically getting 5% off everything you buy. So put everything from common everyday purchases at the supermarket, gas stations, etc. to eating out, bars, etc. Don’t spend more money just because you’re getting 5% cash back (that’d be silly) but just try to put every purchase you normally make can onto the card. In a given month I’ll have at least $1k-$2k in general spending so at 5% cash back that’s$50 to $100 right there.
Put other people’s purchases on the card. If you hang around people who like to pay cash for things, put the purchase on your card and take the cash! More people pay cash than you’d think for lots of things. Once at Sam’s club the lady in front of me paid for $800 worth of groceries and misc purchases with cash! When I’m out with my friends having dinner people usually pay cash at the end of the meal. I recommend collecting the cash (try to make sure everyone paid their fair share first though) and put the whole bill on your card.
Buy Dollar Coins from the US Mint. For purchases that you have to pay in cash you can use dollar coins purchased from the US Mint. The Mint takes credit cards and has free shipping for the direct ship $1 coins. This means you are getting a 5% discount on the face value of cash. You can order $1k every 10 days so in a given month you’d be able to get about 3 orders in. That’s a $150 cash back on $3k worth of coins.
Use Amazon Payments to send money to people. The internet retailer has been rolling out a new payment service called Amazon Payments. At the moment there are no fees to receive and send payments with a credit card. However there is a monthly limit of $1,000 for sending and receiving. This is a great way to send people money for debts, gifts, birthdays, etc. and get 5% cash back.
Buy American Express Gift Cards at a discount. You can effectively get 6.6% cash back on all your purchases by buying American Express Gift Cards through Big Crumbs. Big Crumbs nets you 1.6% cash back on Amex Gift Card purchases. Add the 5% cash back from Chase and that’s a net of 6.6% cash back. Since the Chase promotion runs 6 months you can load up on these gift cards for use after the promotional period. You’re limited to $5k in personal gift card purchases every 14-15 days so plan accordingly.
Take advantage of the card’s 0% APR on purchases and balance transfer for 12 months. The card comes with a promotional offer of 0% APR on purchases and balance transfers. Therefore the best way to take advantage of this is to pay off your card in full each month and get 5% cash back, then on the 6th month rack up charges you’d normally pay off but just carry the balance for the term of the 0% apr offer. It’s essentially a 6 month long free loan. Just remember to pay it off in full to avoid any interest charges.
I’m sure there are more ways to get value out of this promotion but hopefully these will get you started. If you have questions or have a private comment feel free to use the contact form to get in touch with me. Don’t worry I don’t ever publicize things that are discussed (unless you want me to).