New Officemax Visa Gift Card Deal Is a Moneymaker

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A New OfficeMax Promotion

Officemax is running a promotion this week that doesn’t seem to be advertised in their weekly flyer.  The promotion gives $15 off instantly with the purchase of $300 or more in Visa gift cards and expires 6/28/14.

Unfortunately unlike with previous deals, there is a limit of one coupon per transaction and it seems to be hard coded into the coupon.  If you could get the cashier to separate the items into multiple transactions, then you may be able to get the discount more than once, but it is unlikely that they will do it.

Is It Worth It

This is a great deal if you can find the $200 gift cards, since buying two of them will result in a profit plus points.  If you pay with a 5x earning credit card such as the Chase Ink, then you are basically getting free points.  Lets take a look at a few scenarios.

Scenario 1 – 2 x $200 Visa Gift Cards

This is the best scenario when paying with the Ink in my opinion.  You pay $1 more but receive 500 extra points.
This is the best scenario when paying with the Ink in my opinion. You pay $1 more but receive 500 extra points.
  • Total Card Value: $400
  • Total Fees: $13.90 ($6.95 x 2)
  • Total Cost: $413.90
  • Minus Coupon: $15
  • Final Cost: $398.90
  • Profit: $1.10 plus 1995 UR points if paid with Ink. (Or whatever points/cash back gained through the card used.)

Scenario 2 – 1 x $200 & 1 x $100 Visa Gift Cards

This may be a good scenario if not using a 5x card or if you can only find one of the $200 cards.
This may be a good scenario if not using a 5x card or if you can only find one of the $200 cards.
  • Total Card Value: $300
  • Total Fees: $12.90 ($6.95 + $5.95)
  • Total Cost $312.90
  • Minus Coupon: $15
  • Final Cost: $297.90
  • Profit: $2.10 plus 1490 UR points if paid with Ink. (Or whatever points/cash back gained through the card used.)

Scenario 3 – 3 x $100 Visa Gift Cards

If you can only find $100 cards, then this could still be a good deal.
If you can only find $100 cards, then this could still be a good deal.
  • Total Card Value: $300
  • Total Fees: $17.85
  • Final Cost: $317.85
  • Minus Coupon: $15
  • Final Cost: $302.85
  • Total Profit: -$2.85 plus 1514 UR points. (Or whatever points/cash back gained through the card used.)

Since scenario 3 comes with an out of pocket cost, you are essentially paying about .2 cents per point which is a good value.

Analysis

Obviously the sweet spot here is to either purchase two of the $200 cards or the mixture of one $200 and one $100 card.  I have seen in the past with these deals that the $200 cards go quickly, so if scenario 3 is your only route, then I still find it to be worth the effort if you have a card that earns a category bonus.

These cards are all issued by Metabank and should be able to be loaded onto your Bluebird card without any issue.  All of my local stores have a sign advertising the special (seen above) and the cashier simply has to scan a barcode in their book to give the discount.

Conclusion

While this isn’t as good as some of the other more scalable Officemax deals that we have seen in the past, it still can be a moneymaker and an easy way to earn some free points.  Additionally if you have to meet minimum spend requirements on a card, this can be a way to achieve a few hundred in spending without any out of pocket cost.

Have you had success with this or other Officemax promotions in the past?  Let me know in the comments!

Quick Reminder

Just a reminder if you haven’t heard or are new to the site, I am giving away a $100 gift card in celebration of joining BoardingArea and you still have a few days to enter!

 

 


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53 COMMENTS

  1. Is the $15 ‘rebate” in the form of a store credit for future purchases or check in mail or just $15 cash from the register?

  2. Love the officemax promos as that is the only office supply store in my area. Looks like I will need to make a trip there this afternoon. Thanks for the heads up!

  3. Did they need to scan a code for the discount??? My OM is not finding this offer and is totally unaware. The dont see a scan sheet for the visa deal.

    • They are activated at the register when you buy them. The pin is the last four digits of the card number by default or you can call or go online to change it if you want. You could essentially buy them and head straight over to buy the MO and BB by using the last four as a pin. No other steps required!

      • Exactly what I did. Went to Kroger, did a $400 MO, deposited in my bank. Small profit but great way to do points.
        BTW, cashier at OM was willing to let me run more than once or with multiple cards. I was the only one in the store.

  4. Shawn – thanks for sitting on this one a bit. (wink, wink) It’s nice to see a blogger with some integrity who keeps their promise. Congrats on joining Boarding Area!

    • Which OfficeMax area did you go? all officemax around my area are out of the $200 gc and only have $100 and $50 🙁

      • All of the ones in my area are down to just $100 cards now as well. Usually once this promotion has been running for a couple of days, all of the $200 cards disappear. While it is more of a hassle, the $100 cards are still a good value when using your Ink.

      • I’m in Seattle. I should have checked at the counter, but there was a long line and I was thinking maybe I had the wrong store! I’ll try to go tonight and report back.

    • Unfortunately it is only one discount per transaction. The only way to get the discount more than once is if the cashier is willing to let you pay in more than one transaction. i.e. 2 x $200 and then another 2 x $200 in a separate transaction.

  5. any idea if this is also valid at office depot? the bottom left corner of the promo image says (c) Office Depot.

    • As far as I know it is just Officemax. Office Depot is the parent company so that could be why it says that. Based on people’s reports from yesterday it wasn’t available at Office Depot, but I haven’t heard anything either way today.

  6. I’m kind of a newbie and haven’t used Bluebird yet. Is this currently the best way to earn points (using the Ink card) for paying bills like a mortgage? If/when this deal is over (or if I need to buy more than $300 if Office Max doesn’t allow), what is the next best way? Without the $15 discount, it would (for example) cost ~$2070 to buy $2000 worth of $200 cards (using your $400 example, above). That would leave only a $30 “profit” from getting the 5% back on the Ink card (if you only value UR = $0.01). Is there a better option out there right now? Thanks!

    • If you have a Chase Ink Visa card then you can enroll it in Visa Savings Edge which gives a 1% rebate at Staples. The $200 cards at Staples run the same $6.95 fee, but with the 1% rebate your cost ends up being $4.88 per card or around $48.88 for $2,000 worth. Plus Ultimate Rewards points are often worth much more than 1% when used with Chase’s transfer partners, so I don’t recommend cashing them in at that value normally.

      • Thanks so much for the tips. If you don’t mind me asking (!!!), if you were looking to pay a $2000 mortgage each month, would you buy 10 x $200 Visa gift cards at Staples all at one time? Have you ever run into any problems with the store not wanting to sell you that many or Chase not giving you the 5% UR bonus (or Bluebird not accepting these types of Visa gift cards)? Thanks again!

        • I usually buy the Staples gift cards online and not in store. Online they allow up to $2,000 in purchases so you could easily do them all at once. I hardly ever find any $200 cards in store and when I do it is one or two so I am not sure of the limits there.

          I have always received 5x points from Chase for ALL purchases at Officemax, Staples & Office Depot without any issues. The points automatically post at the end of the statement cycle.

          Finally, these cards do work with Bluebird, but that is subject to change of course. As you may have heard, cards that are part of the Vanilla Network stopped working last week quite suddenly. I don’t expect these cards which are issued by Metabank to stop working, but it is always a possibility.

          • Thanks so much for your help to this newbie!

            Is the $2000 Staples limit (10 x $200 cards?) a per-month limit? If so, do you usually order $2000 in cards all at once (each month) or split it up into multiple orders?

            Also (sorry for all the questions!), do you have any other favorite cards to use other than the Ink? I assume the Ink and AMEX Simply Cash Business are the best (maybe others?) due to the 5% back. Either those or using any new card to reach minimum spend thresholds?

            Thanks for all of your insights!

  7. Can someone be so kind to post what store had the barcode so my store manager can call that store to find out about it, he can’t find it, thanks!!

  8. Can someone be so kind and post a store that has the barcode so my store manager can call that store to confirm…he can’t find it anywhere 🙁 thanks!!

  9. The deal exists in the SF bay area, but no signage about it whatsoever. Barcode is at the register. If you kindly ask nicely to split tender most cashiers will let you. A couple militant managers wouldn’t let me though…very hard to find any GCS over $100 in the area…

  10. I’m in Seattle (same as Cory above) and the downtown Sodo Center store did not have the sign or the barcode. The Manager looked online and in their notebook of codes and found nothing and told me it was probably a regional promotion…. They had plenty of $100 and 200 cards. May try another location tomorrow.

  11. I like the way you broke down the values of each combination of cards to get the deal because you never know which cards are going to be in stock. Thanks.

  12. Not sure why my post is not posting so here I post it again:
    I want to apply Lufthansa, SW and SPG cards using your affiliate links…….but before that, please tell me how do I meet the minimum spending to get the sign up bonus since we cannot load Vanilla gift cards into BB at WM anymore. I checked around my area and all the Office Depot and Staples are out of the $200 fixed about Visa gift card, only the $100 one available but I don’t want to buy a lot of $100 visa gc because it’s a hassle to load them one by one at WM (besides amazon payment, using the gc for regular spending and evolve, since I want to pay my credit card bills with bluebird)……I don’t want to be stuck with many GC that cannot be liquidated ……..please advise so I can use your link to apply before the offer expires.

  13. In scenario 3, aren’t you actually paying just .0018 per point? ($2.85 / 1514 assuming 5x office supplies?) The rest of the GC value is a wash…

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