Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Citi Dividend and Bluebird - $240 Free - It's Just Too Easy!

Last year, the most lucrative 5% category of the year by far was the first quarter with the Citi Dividend.  Their 5% rotating cashback categories included drug stores (ie Vanilla Reloads at CVS).

Most credit cards (Discover, Chase Freedom etc.) have a cap for each quarter on how much spending you can get 5% on, which is usually capped at $1,500 for a maximum of $75 per quarter.  Not the Citi Dividend.  They give you a max of spending of $6,000 a year which can be maxed out at any point.   Spend $6,000 at CVS right away and you can get $300 in 5% cashback in one quarter!  Of course, I made sure to do that.  After the first couple of months I didn't use the card the rest of the year.

Considering that there is a 1% fee for buying the Vanilla Reload cards, you are making $240 free.

Check out this point to see why Vanilla Reloads are important and how to load them onto a Bluebird card

It's Back Again This Year, Really!?

I assumed they would never bring that back.  It was too easy to get free money.  I am happy I am wrong! This year, again, drug stores is part of the 5% categories for January- March 2014. Same rules as last year.  I will make sure to get one for my wife as well, $480 free!

Can't find Vanilla Reloads at CVS?  It can vary store to store, but my local stores restock prepaid cards on Friday.  I go on Saturday night or Sunday morning and there are usually still some left.  Ask the people who work at your local CVS when they restock.

Don't have a CVS?  You can buy $500 visa gift cards at Walgreens (at least you could a few months ago) and either spend them or load them onto Bluebird at Walmart.  You can't buy Vanilla Reloads at Walgreens, the cash register is hard coded to not let that happen

Sign up for a Citi Dividend here.  You will get a $100 bonus for spending $500 in the first 3 months or $340 for each new card. Easy Peasy and there is no annual fee either.  If you get a new card for you and your spouse you can get $680 very quickly!

A few words of caution:

  • Don't spend $6,000 the first month at CVS even if your credit limit allows it.  Do $2,000 a month.  It will look less suspicious.
  • Don't buy Vanilla Reloads in 2 $500 increments.  A purchase of $1,007.90 from CVS is very suspicious.  Buy denominations that are slightly less.  I tend to put $495 on each card so that the total purchase is below $1,000