Update 10/23/2014 - Cashback is back down to 1.5% and my cashback is already pending in my Top Cashback account.
Until the rest of 10/22, Top Cashback is offering 2.25% cashback for buying American Express Gift Cards. This is a very good sign considering there was a time when American Express Gift Cards disappeared from all the shopping portals.
American Express Gift Cards have long been one of my best buds in the manufactured spending world. Unfortunately, with the demise of Amazon Payments, they are far less useful, but they still can have their uses.
Why Can I Do With This Deal?
The maximum you can buy per person is $5,000 per 15 business days. 2.25% is $112.50 cashback from Top Cashback. Purchase fees and shipping fees come out to $16.85.
Before I get into any heavy math, I will give you a preview of what you will get:
- 3.9% cashback everywhere or $55 with a Fidelity American Express.
- Meet a spending threshold and break even on a 1% cashback card
- "Buy" your favorite miles for under a penny per point.
1) Fidelity American Express
- 2% cashback everywhere. For a $5,016.85 order, this comes out to $100.33 from Fidelity and $112.50 from Top Cashback. After fees, this comes out to about $196, which is 3.9% cashback to spend anywhere. Not too shabby!
2) Meet a Spending Threshold
- Recently signed up for a credit card and need to spend money to get the bonus (I'm giving you the stink-eye JF)? Me too! You can buy these gift cards to put money on your credit card now and use these gift cards over time.
- Assuming your credit card gets 1% cashback on every purchase, you will get $50 cashback from your credit card and $112.50 from Top Cashback for a total of $145.65 after fees or 2.9% cashback while meeting a spending threshold at the same time.
3) Buy Miles Cheaply
- You can take this as an opportunity to buy 5,000 miles on your favorite credit card for a very cheap price. You would want to cash out the gift cards to make it worthwhile. That comes next.
Using American Express Gift Cards
What should you do with these gift cards once you buy them?
- Spend them like an American Express credit card. You can buy one $3,000 and one $2,000 card so it isn't too much of a hassle. I recommend not using them on any purchase that you might want to return.
- Cash out. I don't know of any way to do this cheaply. You can use Google Wallet to send money to a friend (read: my wife) who can then withdraw to a bank account. This costs a whopping 2.9% or $140. You will keep about $4,860 of the $5,000.
- With Fidelity American Express you will end up keeping about $55 for about half an hour of work.
- If you are meeting a spending threshold, you will just about break even and still be $5,000 closer to your target
- If you are buying miles, you will be getting 5,000 miles at a fee of $0.0088 per mile.
- You are "buying" 5000 miles for $44 after fees
No promo codes! Your cashback from Top Cashback will be invalidated.