Caution: Dell portal payouts now split (high payouts only for computers)


I’m not sure when things changed, but I noticed yesterday that Rakuten now lists the payout for Dell as “up to” 10% back. That led me to notice that the Wyndham, Caesars Rewards, and Cathay Pacific portals are also now advertising a higher rate for Alienware and XPS laptops than for everything else at Dell. That’s really disappointing news for those of us with Business Platinum cards who haven’t yet used the Dell benefit for July to December 2022.

a laptop on a table

I went to buy something with one of my Business Platinum cards yesterday and I noticed that Rakuten was listing Dell Technologies as “up to 10% back”. I was disappointed when I checked the details and realized that only Alienware and XPS laptops and desktops are at 10% — all other items at Dell are listed at 2% back.

a screenshot of a black list

That’s a big disappointment as many of us have become accustomed to stacking either an Amex Offer or Business Platinum credit (or both!) with a good shopping portal payout, particularly from Rakuten.

Unfortunately, it’s not just Rakuten with this change. I opted to order through Wyndham Rewards Shopping instead of Rakuten last night without looking closely enough at the terms.

a person sitting on a laptop

As you can see, it clearly says that you’ll earn a higher reward on Alienware and a lower reward for basically everything else. Based on the way that sentence is written, I’m not even sure what the payouts are. Do you earn a reward that’s higher than 7 points per dollar for Alienware, or is it just recognizing that whatever the Alienware payout is (presumably 7 points per dollar?), you’ll earn less on GPS, MPS, Camera, Phones, etc? I have no idea what to expect for my purchase (though, in fairness, I find that Wyndham’s math never matches the payout exactly anyway, so I don’t know if I’d have even noticed in this case). Caesars Rewards and Cathay Pacific Asia Miles appear to run on the same platform as Wyndham and they have matching terms.

Most other portals do not yet shoe different rates for different products at Dell, but I assume that a change is coming. For now, you might want to try ordering from a portal that does not yet show split categories, but I assume they will all eventually follow suit and that the party is over on great payouts on things other than computers. That’s certainly a bummer. One place where I think great payouts may still be possible if this change becomes widespread is potentially targeted offers from Capital One Shopping.

The jury is still out on this, but if you have Dell credits to use, you may want to try using them up through a portal that does not yet list separate rates for Alienware and XPS and a low rate for everything else.

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