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Wednesday, November 27

Holiday Gift Card Deals Orgy

The holidays have become the time of year when retailers hand out free money.  It all has to do with the incentives they offer to entice shoppers to purchase gift cards.  Even if you don't need to buy gifts for others (which is presumably what most people are doing when they purchase gift cards),  it's not a bad idea to take advantage of some of these offers if you plan to spend money at the retailer in the future.  Basically, you are prepaying for future spending.  I have found some incredible offers this year:

  • Chili's is offering a $10 bonus card when you buy a $50 gift card.  I purchased mine through, where I earned 1,000 MyPoints (20 per dollar spent), which is worth an extra $7.29 towards the $50 Regal gift card I am saving for.  We will only eat at Chili's when we have a free appetizer coupon, which are emailed out almost on a weekly basis.
  • Outback, Bonefish, Carraba's... all the Bloomin Brands restaurants... are offering $20 bonus cards when you buy a $100 gift card.  We use Outback coupons along with the gift cards.
  • One of my favorite deals is Papa John's.  Buy a $25 gift card, get a free large one topping pizza.
  • Another deal is the 2 free tacos and large drink you get at Taco Bell for buying a $20 gift card.
  • The deal ends today, but if you purchase a Paypal Mastercard at CVS and load it with $150, you receive $50 in Extra Care Bucks.  It costs $4.95 to buy the card, and I paid another $1.95 to withdraw the funds from an ATM machine.  You can avoid the $1.95 fee by using the card to charge things, but then you have to worry about paying another $4.95 monthly fee for using the card, which is charged soon after you activate the card.  I withdrew the funds right away and avoided that extra fee.  I've heard this is a regional deal.  It wasn't in my Sunday paper ad but I did find it in my online ad.
  • Ruby Tuesday is offering a $15 bonus card with the purchase of a $50 gift card.  On top of that, American Express is offering a $10 statement credit if you spend $30 or more at Ruby Tuesday (you have to register for the offer first).  I am getting $65 in gift cards for $40 - sweet!
Besides gift card deals, there are plenty of other opportunities you can take advantage of.  I mentioned the American Express statement credit.  I just discovered the deals at American Express - not sure how long they have been around.  I received a $5 statement credit for buying $5 gas at Murphy USA and another $5 credit for buying $25 gas at BP.   When I bought the $100 gift card at Bonefish Grill, I received a $10 credit.  I have found other deals at Shopdiscover, Ebates and the aforementioned Mypoints.


  1. We do this through a work scheme - they let us buy gift cards with a 5-15% discount - worth doing if you use the store on a regular basis.

    1. I think it's great that you can do this through work. As long as you shop there anyway, why not get a discount?