Negative Cost Amex Gift Card Deal at Staples: Free Money + 5X

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Staples Amex Gift Card Rebate Deal

Staples has a negative cost Amex gift card deal coming next week. While not as good as their Visa or Mastercard deals, it could still be nice for some. Let’s take a look.

The Deal

  • Get a $20 Staples Gift Card via easy rebate when you buy $300 in American Express Gift Cards. (Note: These gift cards are NOT PIN-enabled.)

Key Terms

  • Deal valid from 08/27/17 through 09/02/17
  • In-store only.
  • Limit 1 rebate per name/address/household.

The deal can be found on the upcoming week’s ad on the Staples website.

Maximizing the Deal

This deal is usually best maximized by using a card that earns 5X at office supply stores like the Chase Ink Plus or Chase Ink Cash. You can also use an Amex SimplyCash Plus which earns 5% cashback at office supply stores.

Using the Chase Ink, the optimal strategy is to purchase 2 of the $200 cards which cost $206.95 each. Here is the math assuming a $20 Staples gift card is worth $20 (feel free to insert your own value):

  • Cost: $413.90
  • Minus Rebate: $20
  • Final Cost: -$6.10
  • UR Points Earned: 2,070

You could also purchase a $200 card and a $100 card, but the savings of $1 on fees doesn’t justify the loss of 500 Ultimate Rewards points on the extra $100 in spend.


While this deal won’t make your Ultimate Rewards balance swell too much, it is a way to pickup a chunk of points and a few dollars too. Unfortunately Amex gift cards aren’t the easiest to liquidate, so this won’t be for everyone.


  1. Thanks Shawn for sharing this! could one buy $500 staples and or mastercard gift cards with these $200 AMEX gift cards? how about using these AMEX gift cards via Plastiq?

    • The only real way to liquidate them is via normal spend at a merchant who accepts American Express. An alright way to divert spend to earn 5X, but probably not for most people.


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