Make money AND UR miles with OfficeMax and Chase Ink

Through Saturday, August 29, Officemax is having an unadvertised special where you get a $15 rebate when you buy $300 worth of Visa gift cards.  I made a whopping 24,000 miles during a promotion just like this one around Christmas by driving around to different OM stores.  By buying 3X$200 gift cards you will get an instant $30 discount off the total automatically.  The gift cards each have a $6.95 fee so your total for all $600 in gift cards will just be $590.85 [(3X$206.95) – $30]!  This means you are getting $10 for free!IMG_7426

Hello, free lunch!

But wait… There’s more!  If you use a normal miles earning credit card you will score 591 miles or points, but if you use the Chase Ink Plus card (which gives you 5X points on Office Supply stores like OM) you will take home almost 3,000 of the ultra valuable Ultimate Rewards points.

You can usually do this once per day at every OfficeMax in your local area (if they aren’t sold out of course).  Note this works for the $200 and $100 gift cards but the $200 are a better value since the fee is approximately the same.  Keep in mind that even though they are merged, this promotion is only at OfficeMax stores not Office Depots.  You can also call before you go to make sure they have the $200 Visa’s in stock so you don’t waste a trip.

Make money and miles… Does it get any better?

Get 24,000 Free Ultimate Rewards Points from OfficeMax!

Edit: This deal actually goes until December 27th so you can get 50,000 miles or more!

Edit 2: I found out today you can do 3X$200 to maximize the discount with $40 off. I have updated the review to reflect this.

I love OfficeMax!  They give me free money and miles all the time like when they gave me 1000 points a day and when they gave me 43,000 Ultimate Rewards points in just one week! This time it is 24,000 free points but it is possible to get even more!

What you need?

  1. A miles or points earning credit or debit card. Any card will work for this deal but the Ink Plus, Ink Cash or Amex Simplycash cards are ideal with their 5X points on Office Supply stores
  2. A Bluebird card (you can get for free at Walmart)
  3. A little free time to stop by OfficeMax every day and then Walmart at the end of the week.

Continue reading “Get 24,000 Free Ultimate Rewards Points from OfficeMax!”

TWM, Take Me Away to the World Cup 2014 for free!

This is another in our Take Me Away series of articles.  We first showed you how to get to Bali for free and then tackled Costa Rica.  I took my own advice and ended up flying to Costa Rica last month for only $45!  If you don’t have miles yet, take 30-45 minutes and complete our free Getting Started page so you will be ready next time 

World Cup 2014World Cup madness is upon us and I wanted to see what last minute trips were available with miles to get you to Brazil.  Since the matches are scattered around Brazil over a large timeframe, this was a perfect opportunity to come up with some creative frequent flyer tickets!  Here are some of the options I found using my article on How to Search OneWorld availability using  Once I found available flights I priced them out following the article on How to book OneWorld flights with British Airways Miles.  

British Airways is a transfer partner of Ultimate Rewards.  You can transfer miles earned from the 40,000 point bonus of the Chase Sapphire Preferred, or the 60,000 point bonus of the Chase Ink Bold, or the book directly with 50,000 Avios bonus of the Chase British Airways card.

Option 1:  Sao Paulo

SAO World CupThere is TONS of availability for this city.  You could use this as a jumping off point for many of the other cities.  To keep things simple (and the milage costs down), I am only going to focus on the non stop available awards.  For just 50,000 Avios + $88 you could fly down from Miami and see three world cup matches!MIA-GRU

For those of you not in Miami, British Airways may not be the cheapest option (but it probably still will be), so check out the American flights for 60,000 AA or US Airways Miles and $118 from anywhere in the continental US.  The Citibank AA Mastercard currently has a 50K sign up bonus and the US Airways Card has a 40K bonus after spending $1.  You would just need to find connecting flights from your city to Miami where there are award seats using the tools we linked to above.MIA-GRU AA

Option 2: Recife

RecifeFor the non stop there is only availability after the USA match but you could see the first match of the Round of 16. You could spend the rest of the time on the beautiful beaches of Recife! For only 40,000 Avios (the same amount as the sign on bonus for the Chase Sapphire Preferred) + $88 you could see this historic match!MIA-REC BAYou could do the same thing from anywhere in the US for the higher price of 60,000 AA miles + $118.

Option 3: Rio de Janeiro

Rio World CupHow does this sound for the ultimate long weekend?  Fly into Rio on Thursday night, July 3, arrive at 5 in the morning on July 4, attend the quarter finals that day at the famous Estádio Maracanã, then celebrate through the weekend in Rio then fly back out on Sunday July 6.  For only 50,000 Avios (the exact amount of the sign up bonus on the Chase British Airways Visa) or 60,000 American Miles, you can do it!  And there are two seats available so you can take a friend with you!MIA-RIO World Cup

Option 4: Brasilia

Brasilia World CupYou can’t make the Colombia match unfortunately for the cheapest miles price, but you can make it for 3 matches including the Quarter-finals in the amazing city of Brasilia for only 40,000 Avios (which you could get from the sign up bonus of the Chase Sapphire Preferred) and $91!MIA-BSB World CupLike the other options you could travel from anywhere else in the US using 60,000 American miles once you find your connecting flights to Miami.

Option 5: Belo Horizonte

Belo Horizonte World CupFor just 40,000 Avios and $88 you can leave in two days and see Argentina, Costa Rica, and England play, and also catch the first round of 16 match in Belo Horizonte, one of the most beautiful cities in all of Brazil!MIA-CNF BAAs with the others, 60K AA miles is also an option if you aren’t located in Miami.

Bonus Option 6 for my Colombian Friends

I have so many Colombian Friends I had to include an option to see your match vs Japan in CuiabáBrazil on June 24.  Since Cuiabá is such a small airport, I couldn’t find frequent flyer seats there so you would need to buy a ticket from Sao Paulo to there for $78.MIA-GRU One WayGRU-CGBYou could then buy another $65 ticket from Cuiabá to Brasilia to catch your frequent flyer ticket back from there.CGB-BSB BSB-MIA Colombia

This gives you a total cost of 45,000 Avios and $234.  Which still isn’t too bad to see your country play in the world cup!  A better option might be to predict where they will play in the Round of 16 and go there since I am sure they will be making it through!


You would still need hotels and tickets to the games but there are a ton of options available to you when you get the flights there for cheap.  Using the tools I have provided above you can look for the flights and cities that match up with your favorite teams.  That Rio option is looking awfully tempting to me.  I think those two seats are going to go quickly once this article is published!

Feel free to comment on what other good options you found and tell me which matches you think would be the best to watch! As always, reply with any questions and follow me on Google+FacebookTwitter and Instagram to make sure you don’t miss any great info!

1000 Free Points every day this week with OfficeMax and OfficeDepot and your Ink Bold card!

I love OfficeMax.  Like really, really love it!  They give me so many free miles, it is hard to use them all (but I will find ways like my recent trip to Germany and China).  Back in March, I got paid $9 to get 3000 miles at OfficeMax which I did a bunch of times to end up with 43,000 Ultimate Rewards Points in a week!

This offer isn’t quite as great as that one, but it is still pretty good!  This week, OfficeMax is having a promotion where if you buy $150 in Amex Gift cards, they give you $15 off the cost instantly.  Amex GCOnly the $25, $50, and $100 Amex gift cards work for this promotion.  The best value is to buy two $100 gift cards each with a $5.95 purchase charge.  Once they scan the coupon code from their binder, it will remove $15 from the cost of $105.95X2 which gives a grand total of $196.90. The cards you should buy look like this.

20140609-140908-50948604.jpgIf you have the Chase Ink Bold card that gives you 5X points on office supply stores, this will earn you almost 1000 points for your purchase! You can use any mileage earning card to earn 1X miles, but the Ink Bold is definitely the best way to go if you have it because of the bonus.

Once you have these gift cards you can use them for day to day spending.  They unfortunately don’t have a PIN code so you can’t use them for getting money orders at Walmart. I have found that using these gift cards at the grocery store is one of the best ways because the cash registers are smart enough to automatically determine the balance on the card so you don’t have to say “put $3.98 on this card” etc. You can use them anywhere Amex is accepted though.

If you have multiple OfficeMax stores near you, you should be able to buy $200 per day per store and really rack up the miles.  Even though it says that it is limited to one per household, every store I have been to before has said you can get the deal once per day.  I haven’t verified this yet, but now that the OfficeMax / OfficeDepot merger has closed, I think you should be able to get this at both stores.  In my location there is an OfficeDepot half a mile away from an OfficeMax which would make it convenient to double it up with one trip.  That gives me a potential of 14,000 free miles this week if I just take 15 minutes each day!  What a deal!

Edit: This is confirmed to work at both OfficeMax and OfficeDepot.  So double up if you have two of them close to one another!

As always, feel free to comment with any questions and follow me on Google+FacebookTwitter and Instagram!

Chase bumps the Ink Bold and Ink Plus cards sign up bonus to 60K (from 50K)!

People who read this blog know I love my Chase Ink Bold card.  It is one of the first cards I recommend after the Chase Sapphire Preferred card because the points can be combined together in one Ultimate Rewards account.  It makes me tens of thousands of miles every month with its 5X points on office supply stores.  The sign up bonus for these cards is typically 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points, but maybe two times a year, they bump it up to 60,000.  This is one of those times!Ink Bold

This is a business card which means it is targeted to small business owners.  But many times you have a small business and don’t even know it!  Read this article I wrote about how to fill out a business application for your ebay, garage sale, freelance writing, or buy and sell business.  You use your personal credit to apply for it!

You can use this card for buying gift cards at Staples or OfficeMax to earn 5X points on all of your spending!  I used this technique this to help me get 257 Miles by buying protein powder!20130823-152613.jpg

This bonus bump applies to both the Chase Ink Bold (which is a charge card and you have to pay off in full each month) and the Chase Ink Plus (which is a credit card which you can pay over time).

My sources tell me that this should last for the month of May.  We will probably see this bonus again in 6 months or so, but if you were considering getting this card soon, then now is the time! If you want an idea of how useful this card is, then check out this list of all of the Ink Bold articles we have written!

As always, feel free to comment with any questions and follow me on Google+FacebookTwitter and Instagram!

How I made 43,000 UR points last week without spending a dime!

My statement just cycled for my Ink Bold account and I was in for a treat! Over 43K Ultimate Rewards points in one month (although basically all of them was in one week)!Chase UR SummaryHow did I do it?

A few weeks ago I wrote an article about how to make $9 and 3000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points via a gift card promotion they had at OfficeMax.  When I run into a good deal, I like to go big so that is exactly what I did in this case! 🙂IMG_7751  By running around to multiple Officemax locations and getting creative by bringing my Dad and nephew into the store (so I had 3 customers and I could get the special deal 3 times), I was able to make 15 transactions over 4 days.Chase Transactions

Most of the transactions were for $600 in gift cards for $590.85 and a few were $500 in gift cards for $499.75 (used when the store didn’t have the $200 gift cards in stock).  So I ended up spending  $8680 for $8800 in gift cards.  I then used those gift cards to fund my Bluebird account and then did an online bill pay to pay the card off.  Since I used my Chase Ink Bold which gives me 5 Ultimate Rewards Points for every dollar, I scored over 43,000 points and ended up making $120 while doing it!

What could I use 43,000 Ultimate Rewards Points for?

  • 4 Round Trip tickets from Miami to Cancun using BA Miles on American.


  • 4 Round trip tickets from Miami To Detroit on Southwest.


  • 2 tickets to San Jose, Costa Rica using BA Miles on American.



I hope some of you also took advantage of this great deal.  If you weren’t ready then start getting the things now that you need so you will be ready for next time.  For this great deal, all you needed was an Ink Bold charge card, and a free Bluebird card.

As always, feel free to comment with any questions and follow me on FacebookTwitter and Instagram!

Get PAID $9 to take 3000 Ultimate Rewards Points with OfficeMax

Sometimes these deals come around that seem too good to be true but they aren’t!  What if I told you I would give you 3000 Ultimate Rewards points and pay you 9 dollars for your trouble.  This is 1/3 of the amount you need to go from Miami to Cancun as I mentioned in the 5 things you can do now to go to the BPM festival article. This deal is good until March 8, 2014.

What do I need?

  1. Ink Bold Card or Ink Plus Card
  2. Free Bluebird Account

How do I do it?

Overview: From March 2 – March 8, Office Max is having a special where you get a $15 discount when you buy $250 in Metabank gift cards.  There is a limit of two discounts per customer.OfficeMax Gift Card AdStep 1: Go to your local OfficeMax and pick up three of the $200 Visa Gift cards.  Only the Visa’s are on the special. If they don’t have $200 gift cards, you can buy five $100 gift cards instead.  If your OfficeMax only has the $100 ones then you will still make the 3000 UR points but will make $1 instead of $9 due to the additional in fees paid. (5X$5.95 instead of 3X$6.95) 20140306-004431.jpg

Step 2: Buy these three gift cards and the sales associate will scan a code from their sale book that gives you a $30 discount.  The normal price of each of these is $206.95 so your total should be $590.85 for $600 worth of gift cards!  Pay using your Ink Bold or Ink Plus card and you will get 2950 Ultimate Rewards points.

Step 3: From this point on follow our how to use the Walmart Money Pass Kiosk to load gift cards onto your BlueBird for no fee article.

Step 4: Use your Bluebird account to pay off your Ink Bold card as explained in our How to Spend Money without Spending Money article.


If you have an Ink Bold card and a Bluebird card then you should really be able to go to OfficeMax, stop by home to set the PIN code, then go to Walmart, load your Bluebird and then pay off your Ink Bold card all within about an hour.  Do this 3 times before the 8th and you have enough points for a free ticket from Miami to Cancun!

As always, feel free to comment with any questions and follow me on FacebookTwitter and Instagram!

TWM, Take Me Away to Bali, Indonesia for free!

This is the first in a series of articles called TWM Take Me Away! where I will pick a destination a reader wants to go to and show you how to get there for free with miles!

A reader contacted me recently:

“I am taking the time to message you right now because I want to go to Bali at the end of August for my birthday and I’m trying to figure out how much to save to have. And also around what months should l look into buying a flight ticket.”

Bali is definitely on my bucket list due to the amazing culture , beautiful scenery and friendly people.Bali


I priced out a ticket around those dates on and the cheapest I could find was $1401 on Delta for JFK to DPS (the airport in Bali) via LAX and TPE which seemed like a decent price since you are flying halfway around the world.  Business class was over $6,000!  But the name of this site is Traveling With Miles not Traveling with Cash, so lets see how we can get there for free.

1. Use 70,000 or 110,000 American AAdvantage Miles to book OneWorld flights.

According to the American Airlines OneWorld chart on this page, you can go from North America to 70,000 Miles round trip in economy class and 110,000 Miles Round trip in business class. I checked and there is some availability on Cathay Pacific which has a great business class product if you can be flexible on dates throughout August.

Cathay Business
Cathay Pacific New Business Class Seats

It is a 15 hour flight from JFK to HKG so I would definitely recommend business class.  As a general rule, for any flight 5 hours or more, I try to do business class if I have the miles because it makes the experience much more pleasant.

If you wanted to get these miles, you could get 50,000 from the Citibank AA Platinum Personal MC, then wait 65 days and apply for the 50,000 Mile Citibank AA Platinum Business Mastercard.  That will give you more than enough for a coach ticket and almost enough for the business class seat.  With a some of our online shopping deals for American Miles, you should be able to make the difference up easily.

2. Use 65,000 or 120,000 United miles to book on Star Alliance

This price will change drastically on February 1 when United changes their award chart so if you happen to want to book this trip, do it now.  I just did a search and found a coach flight departing from EWR to DPS via TPE on EVA and then returning from DPS to EWR via TPE and LAX (on EVA and United on the way back).United Bali CoachThere was also business class availability for 120,000 and $25!

United Bali BusinessNote that these prices will be going up to 80,000 for coach and 160,000 for business after February 1.

To get these miles, you could start with the 40,000 miles from the Chase Sapphire Preferred card you get after spending $3,000.  After 93 days (the minimum for chase to apply for multiple personal cards) you could get another 50,000 from the Chase United Explorer (will need to be logged into your MileagePlus account to see this offer).  You could also take advantage of some online shopping for miles like I did with the 1800 Miles for $75 shopping and 12-16X Miles shopping at Sears.

3. Use 80,000 or 120,000 Delta miles or 70,000 or 125,000 Korean Air to book on SkyTeam

Korean Air Prestige Seat
Korean Air Prestige Seat

I have included two options here because you may have either type of mile.  I picked up 30,000 Delta Miles when I got a Suntrust debit card, and 100,000 when I did some Skymall shopping.  I am also including Korean Air because they are a transfer partner of Chase Ultimate Rewards which might be easier to earn miles with. FYI, the Delta business prices are going up February 1, and the Korean Air prices are going up on June 1.

If you can find availability on Korean Air flights (which you could book with either type of mile) for JFK to DPS via ICN (Seoul), then you should be able to get the above pricing if you are flexible about your travel dates.

To get these miles you could get 30-50,000 Skymiles by getting the Delta Amex card at this link. But I would recommend getting the Chase Sapphire Preferred card for 40,000 Ultimate Reward Points, then getting the Chase Ink Bold for 50,000 more.


Grand Hyatt Bali
Grand Hyatt Bali

For hotels, it looks like the best values are either the Grand Hyatt property or use cash and points at one of the SPG properties.1. For 12,000 Hyatt Gold Points per night you can stay at the Grand Hyatt Bali

W Bali
W Retreat & Spa Bali – Seminyak

2. For 10,000 SPG points + $180 cash a night you can stay at the W Retreat & Spa Bali – Seminyak.  This can be especially rewarding if you have Platinum status with SPG and could possibly get upgraded to a suite.

Le Meridien Bali
Le Meridien Bali

3. For 6000 SPG points and $110 a night you can stay at the Le Meridien Bali

Sheraton Senggigi
Sheraton Senggigi

4. And for only 3000 SPG points per night you can stay in the super secluded Sheraton Senggigi (although it is on a different island than bali so you might have to find your way there)

For the Grand Hyatt property, they are a transfer partner of Ultimate Rewards so the Chase Sapphire Preferred 40,000 bonus could help you out. For the SPG properties, the 25,000 mile bonus from the SPG Amex and the SPG Business Amex could get you some free nights.

5. Another good option might be to get the Barclays Arrival card and then use the $400 sign up bonus (40,000 points you can redeem for $400 in travel expenses) just pay cash for a reasonably priced hotel or hostel or bed and breakfast you find there.

Whew!  That was a lot of information!  But I hope that this shows you how you can get to Bali for free with a little planning.

As always, feel free to comment with any questions and follow me on FacebookTwitter and Instagram!

How I made 16,000 points and $215 on Black Friday shopping

Note: We are in the middle of a contest to give away two round trip plane tickets to The BPM Festival in January.  Make sure you have gotten your entries in!

Have you liked TravelWithMiles on Facebook yet or followed us on Twitter?  Make sure to do it today so you don’t miss any of our great deals to travel the world!

Black Friday is a crazy time of year for promotions and this year was no exception.  I thought it might be interesting to share some of the deals that I came across for Black Friday and took advantage of.

Earlier in the week, Amazon had a promo on the Nexus 7 32 GB tablets that I like to buy for resale for $239.99 including free shipping and no tax.  I had a bunch of Amazon gift cards I had gotten from Plink so this was a perfect way to turn those gift cards into cash when I resell that same tablet in my Amazon store for $269 after the Black Friday sales are over!


Then on Wednesday, I got an email from Staples with a $50 off coupon for any tablet so I ordered another of the Nexus 7 32 GB for $269-$50 = $219.  I had to pay tax on this one so my total cost was $234.33.  If you read my article on Shopping Portals for Mega Miles, you know that I always get extra miles by starting at a portal.  This time I used UPromise for an extra 5% back in cash.  Staples also has a rewards program where I get another 5% back in Staples bucks to use towards a future purchase.  I also get Plink Points for Staples so will get another $3 back. I used my Ink Bold card to pay for it which gives me 5 Ultimate Rewards points per dollar spent. This makes my net cost $210.09 plus I get 1174 Ultimate Rewards points.  I will resell this for around $269 through my Amazon store.

The last deal I was really happy about.  OfficeMax was offering a promo where you could buy a $200 gift card for $180.  Since there is a $6.95 activation fee, this means you would make $13.05 on the card after the promo.  And since I was going to use my Chase Ink Bold Card, I would get 5 Ultimate Reward points per dollar since it is an office supply store.  I got there shortly after they opened at 8 PM on Thanksgiving (we did a Thanksgiving lunch instead of a dinner so I was free).  They had them right up front when I asked about them and they told me “You can buy two per transaction but there is no limit on the number of transactions.”  What!?!  OK, I will take them all then!

officemaxEach of those is two $200 gift cards.  So I ended up with 16 $200 gift cards for a total of $3200 in cards for a total cost of $2984.  Since I used my Ink Bold, I will get another 15,000 Ultimate Rewards on top of making $215!  Gotta love it! If you read my article about Spending Money without Spending Money you know I can use my Bluebird account to take these gift cards and immediately pay off the Ink Bold card I just used to charge it!

I am not sure if there is anything else I will be buying this weekend, but I wanted to share these deals with you so you could get some ideas on how you can make extra miles too! How did you make miles on Black Friday?

1800 Delta Skymiles with a total of $100 in online purchases. No Credit needed!

DeltaSkymilesShoppingCheck your email for one from Delta Skymiles Shopping titled “Member Exclusive! Make 1,500 Bonus Miles When You Shop Three Times”.  If you have it like I did then you have been targeted for a special promotion for extra miles.  This promotion is only open to those who received the email.  The promotion gives you 500 Skymiles after you make a $50 purchase, then 1000 Skymiles when you make two more purchases totaling $50 more. All of the purchases have to be made by November 4, 2013. Here is how I am going to maximize it:

  1. Click through the Delta Skymiles Shopping page to Sears and buy one physical $50 Sears gift card using my Chase Ink Bold that I have registered with Plink (with K-Mart chosen as one of my wallet entries since Sears issues their gift cards from K-Mart).  This will give me 50 UR points for the purchase plus 150 Skymiles for the 3 miles per dollar plus 500 Skymiles for the first bonus plus $3 in Plink points.searsskymilesbanner
  2. One day later I will buy two physical $25 Sears gift cards in separate transactions, again with my Ink Bold.  For each purchase this will give me 25 UR Miles,75 Skymiles, and $1.25 in Plink points.  I will also get the 1000 bonus Delta Skymiles.
  3. Keep in mind that you can do this even if you only have a debit card and still get the 1800 Delta Skymiles and the Plink points.

This means I will receive a total of 1800 Delta Skymiles, 100 UR Points and $5.50 in Plink points for $100 in purchases.  I will receive even more miles and points when I use the gift cards at Sears.  What a deal! I love this game!

Feel free to comment on this post if you have any questions and don’t forget to Like us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter!