For the past few weeks I’ve been dropping hints of a possible 11% cash back opportunity that I was testing. I thought it over, it seemed plausible, and I shared it with a few folks who were excited to hear the final result. Well I finally put it to the test and it did not work out. Here was the idea:
Step 1: Use the most lucrative shopping portal + credit card combo to generate 6% cash back on American Express gift cards.
Step 3: Load Visa gift cards onto Bluebird
Step 4: Open a Target REDcard (debit version). The Target REDcard is a discount card that links to your checking account and offers a 5% discount on all shopping done at Target. You need to present a check in order to open a REDcard. I ordered my free Bluebird checks and used them to link Bluebird to my REDcard. That part worked.
Step 5: Use Target REDcard to load the American Express for Target card and get 5% cash back.
It was all fine and dandy until I hit Step 5. I tried to load $400 (out of the $700 in my Bluebird account) onto the Target REDcard, but a tiny receipt printed out, stating the card type could not be used for that transaction. I tried adding a pack of gum to the transaction and the same tiny receipt printed out. The experiment was officially a failure.
It would have been pretty awesome to generate 11% cash back had this worked, but I’m sorry to say it won’t be an option. For now, we’ll have to suffice with 6% cash back by going through a portal. Barclay has yet to reinstate American Express Gift Cards into the Rewardsboost portal, but there is a simple solution to that if you want to rack up Arrival miles. Use your Barclay Arrival Plus Card in conjunction with one of the 4% cash back portals (BeFrugal, Lucky Rewards). You’ll only earn 2% in travel rewards from your Arrival Plus card, but at least there is still the opportunity to pair it with a portal for another 4% cash back. I treat my Arrival miles like my travel savings account. It would have been ideal to just get 6 Arrival miles straight, as I tend to spend cash back elsewhere if it’s not tied to a mileage currency.
Anyway, that’s my simple strategy since my 5-step experiment failed. I know several people were excited to hear about it, so I’m sorry to let you down. Keep hustling and maybe you’ll stumble upon the next great manufactured spending idea.
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