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!”

Should I get a cashback or a miles card?

Reader Javier asked recently in the comments on this article: “Keith turned me on to your site on Facebook. I wanted a little direction. I have the Capital one Venture card with 2x per dollar spent. I crunched the numbers for last month and if I switched to the Chase card I would be down about 3200 points/miles. Capital One doesn’t necessarily use the miles redeem system, they just reimburse you for the travel based on the amount of the ticket. How would I be able to utilize your system with Capital One?”Credit Card Question Mark

I started writing a quick reply but it quickly got more involved with examples so I wanted to make this into a more comprehensive post that I could refer people to in the future since this is a common question. This is a long post, but read and digest it slowly because it is an important one. If you don’t want all the details, skip to the bottom to the Conclusion TLDR section.

What is the difference between a cashback card and a miles card? Continue reading “Should I get a cashback or a miles card?”

Chase Ink Plus bumps bonus to 70,000 points!

Update 10/23/14: The bonus has gone back to the normal amount of 50,000.

The Chase Ink Bold card has long been one of my favorite cards that has made me hundreds of thousands of Ultimate Rewards points. The Chase Ink Plus is its cousin that is a credit card (that allows you to pay over time) instead of a charge card like the Ink Bold (that requires you to pay in full each month). Although you should be paying in full each month with either card to be a responsible cardholder! If you are paying interest you are doing the miles game all wrong! This is a business card so you will need some sort of a small business to apply such as buying and selling things on ebay or a consulting business or anything you do on the side to earn extra money!
Chase Ink Plus 70KThe normal bonus for this card is 50,000 and while there has been a 70,000 in branch offer for a while, the online offer has remained at 50K.  Until now!  Now using our Chase Ink Plus link you can get 70,000 Ultimate Rewards points after spending $5,000 in the first 3 months. Continue reading “Chase Ink Plus bumps bonus to 70,000 points!”

Book Fast! 8 Amazing Pointbreaks Hotels for 5,000 Points til 9/30!

IHG Pointbreaks are a list of 5000 point per night hotel awards that they release every other month. There are 167 hotels on the list this time.  They are normally much more per night, sometimes as much as 50,000 points, so 5000 is a steal!   I love IHG Pointbreaks Hotels!  In my eyes this is the best value in hotel award stays.  I stayed 11 nights for free (55,000 points total!) during my April trip to China at incredible hotels like the Intercontinental Hangzhou. intercontinental Hangzhou Continue reading “Book Fast! 8 Amazing Pointbreaks Hotels for 5,000 Points til 9/30!”

Chase Ink Plus 70,000 Point offer available in Branch

Chase has made a 70,000 point offer for the Chase Ink Plus business card available in their branches.  As of right now this isn’t available online.  You have to spend $5K in the first 3 months to get the bonus.  This is the credit version of the Chase Ink Bold charge card.  I have made hundreds of thousands of miles from my Chase Ink Bold card with the 5X points bonus it gives you for Office Supply stores.

Thanks Cyin on FT for the pic!
Thanks Cyin on FT for the pic!

This is the best offer I have seen for these cards since they originally came out, so if you were thinking about getting one, then now would be a good time.  Note that you will have to pay the annual fee on this one, but the $95 is worth it for the extra 20K Points over the standard 50K offer.

As always, reply with any questions and follow me on Google+FacebookTwitter and Instagram to make sure you don’t miss any great info!  And don’t forget to share this article with anyone who might be interested using the handy social share buttons right below this post!

How I am flying to the Riverwest Festival in Chicago for $5!

This is another article in our How I Am series that shows you the nuts and bolts of redeeming miles for Award Travel.

People who follow this blog know I love traveling, techno and deep house music.  Wherever possible, I try to combine my passions.  This is one of those times.  I just planned a last minute trip to go to the RiverWest Festival in Chicago over the 4th of July. When my friend ToDD from Chicago first showed me the flyer, I was in heaven!  He told me if I got up there I could stay in his apartment so I wouldn’t even need a hotel for this trip.Riverwest PosterPlanning this trip is a prime example of why it is important to get the miles and points before you need them so when you want to do something you have options. If you still haven’t gotten started with miles, why not check out our Getting Started page.  Everything on it is free and it will only take you about 45 mins to complete.

I was able to use points I had from my Chase Sapphire Preferred card to book this whole trip.  Since Southwest and British Airways are both transfer partners of Ultimate Rewards (which is the type of points the Sapphire Preferred earns), I was able to look at both Southwest and British Airways when looking for available award flights.  And since you can book American Airlines flights using British Airways Avios and save tons of miles (see this article about when to use BA miles vs American miles), that meant I could look at Southwest flights and American Airlines flights.

On the outbound I found this great non stop American Airlines flight from Nashville (where I am located right now) for just 4500 British Airways Avios and $2!  Miami was available as well.  I transferred 5K Ultimate Rewards points over to my British Airways account to book this ticket.  I put the $2 on my Chase British Airways card since it gives me 2.5 Avios per dollar on any BA spend (hey, every little bit helps!).


If I had booked this exact same ticket with American Airlines miles (for the exact same flight on the exact same plane), it would have cost me 12,500 miles and $77 ($2 plus a $75 last minute booking fee).  Score!

Now getting back was a little more complicated.  There were no saver American Airline seats available on Monday (which is what I need to have to be able to book the seats using British Airways Avios), so if I used American miles, it would have to be an AAnytime award.  That would mean 25,000 miles one way!  No Thank You!

I looked at Southwest going out of Chicago Midway airport (both airports are easy to get to from Chicago) and found a great award seat available late in the evening so I would have time to hit any after parties and still sleep some!MDW-BNASo for 4500+9507=14007 Ultimate Rewards points and $4.50 I was able to get this trip booked (OK, it was even less than $5!).  Keep in mind that I got more Ultimate Rewards points than this last week with the Amex Gift Card promotion I wrote about so this was a no brainer! Even better since with Southwest you can cancel any time up to 15 minutes before your flight and get all of your points back, if the American non stop opens up Saver seats between now and then, then I can book that flight back using BA miles and drop the total cost from 14K to 9K!

This little exercise is a prime example of why Ultimate Rewards points are so valuable.  If I had just had Southwest points or American Miles or British Airways Avios, then I wouldn’t have had all of the options that I did.  And having those options is what made this trip a great value! Getting the Chase Sapphire Preferred is the best way to get started with Ultimate Rewards so click here to apply today!

Have any of you booked a trip that you thought was a good value?  Comment and show off your planning skills below!  As always, reply with any questions and follow me on Google+FacebookTwitter and Instagram to make sure you don’t miss any great info!

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!