12/10 Update: I was at CVS again yesterday (I don’t live there, I swear!) and they’ve extended their giftcard promos to include GAP giftcards. The offer was $10 Extra Bucks on any 2 GAP giftcard purchases. I’m not sure what the lowest amount is that you can purchase (my guess is $10-$25), but if it’s $10 or less you’re getting a buy 1 get 1 free deal on the purchase of these cards.
Yesterday I paid a visit to my local CVS and came across an interesting promotion. The store was offering $5 in Extra Bucks for the purchase of any 2 Visa gift or prepaid cards. They were also offering $10 Extra Bucks for purchasing 3 American Express gift cards. The fees for the Visa cards were $3.95, while Amex was at $5.95. Cards were available in increments of up to $500.
For those who are unfamiliar with Extra Bucks, these are rewards offered by CVS’s ExtraCare program, which is free to join. Every time you shop at CVS, simply swipe your ExtraCare card and you’ll earn 2% back in the form of Extra Bucks (excluding gift cards and prepaid cards).
Extra Bucks are paid out quarterly in the form of coupons at the bottom of your receipt and can be applied towards your next purchase. The terms exclude redemptions on gift cards and prepaid cards, but they also state that savings will be applied to total purchases. So you might get away with redeeming your points on gift or prepaid cards as long as an eligible item is included in your total purchase.
Through this promo, you’re essentially getting a 64% discount on the Visa fees and 56% off Amex fees. If your local CVS lets you pay with a credit card, you’ll also come away with a nice 6 points per $1 by using the Amex Hilton HHonors or Amex Hilton Surpass cards. I saw no signs indicating there was a limit to the number of cards that could be purchased, but this may differ at your local store.
A $6,000 purchase will earn 36,000 Hilton HHonors points at a cost of $47.40 for Visa gift/prepaid cards or $71.40 for Amex cards. Factoring Extra Bucks earned ($30 for Visa and $40 for Amex) brings the final cost down to $17.40 and $31.40 respectively. Obviously Visa is the better option here, as it offers the biggest discounts and the ability to purchase prepaid cards that can be cashed out.
This is a great way to meet spending requirements, especially for the various Hilton credit cards, which offer lucrative bonuses in addition to 6 points per $1 at drugstores. Cards like the American Express Premier Rewards Gold, Delta Reserve, Delta Platinum, Chase British Airways Visa, Chase Hyatt Visa, United MileagePlus Explorer cards also offer annual spending bonuses ranging from elite-qualifying and redeemable points to companion certificates.
Is this deal available at your local CVS? If so, please comment below with the location and whether they impose a limit on the number of cards that can be purchased.
Disclosure: I do not earn a referral for any of the credit card links in this post.