Simon Mall is launching a new type of Visa gift card tomorrow (July 1) called the Simon Spend Card. At first glance it doesn’t look too appealing due to the lower maximum load value and higher purchase fee, but it might prove to be useful for some people due to the easier liquidation options compared to other Simon Visa gift cards.
The maximum load value of the Simon Spend Card is $250 and the purchase fee is $6.95 which means the fee works out to be 2.78% of the card value. That’s very high, especially seeing as that’s before you take into account any kind of liquidation costs. For comparison, the $5.95 purchase fee on a $500 variable load card from a grocery store is 1.19% of the card’s value, while the $3.95 fee on a $1,000 Simon Visa gift card is only 0.4%.
It’s liquidation though which is where this card is a little more enticing. The $1,000 Visa gift cards that Simon Mall sells are issued by MetaBank. Those cards have become harder to liquidate over the past year as many large grocery chains have hard coded their systems to not allow you to buy money orders with them. The Spend Card is different because even though it too is issued by MetaBank, Simon has confirmed that the card isn’t blocked and so will be accepted at grocery stores and big-box retailers.
This card can be purchased from July 1 at simon.com/volume which hopefully means that it’ll be eligible for the regular promotions Simon runs where they offer up to 50% off purchase and shipping fees. That could make the economics of this card a little more worthwhile, particularly if you’re trying to hit the minimum spend requirement on a card that requires a lot of spend and you’re out of other options. Just remember that American Express doesn’t offer any points/miles for gift card purchases at Simon Mall even when you’re not working on a minimum spend requirement, so there’s no point in buying these with Amex cards.
I imagine though that for most people wanting to buy Visa gift cards, this card will be a last resort rather than a first choice.
If I buy the new Simon Spend Card, where can I convert Spend Cart to MO. Does it still have limit $99/swipe at Walmart.
What happened to the $1000 cards? They don’t seem to come up online anymore …
They’re still available https://frequentmiler.com/simon-visa-gift-cards-20-off-purchase-fee-free-ground-shipping-more/
Are the hardcoded bans at all Walmarts nationwide? How about Krogers?
I think it’s nationwide and at Kroger too, although I think you can get smaller amounts through (i.e. double digits). It could be worth testing out though just in case.
even with a 50% off, i’d still pass
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At least it does not say “GIFT” like the other designs. Still too pricey, but bay me an ok way to hit a spend bonus especially during a fee sale.
That’s way too pricey!!
at this point (%), you might as well use plastiq?
I thought you were going to say this is a card issued by US Bank but nope. I do not see how the system is going to know the difference between these 2 different types of cards.
The block is from meta bank. So presumably Simon worked out a deal with meta bank that they will not block this type of card in exchange for the higher fee.
Breaking: Simon Malls to go bankrupt but to come back to life via a SPAC rebranded as, wait for it, SimonCards. Blog post coming shortly 🙂
Or rebranded as Simon Pretty Average Cards so that they can be the SPAC SPAC.
Yea, isn’t blocked YET.
How is this not obvious to Simon?
… I mean did they even try to think through the scenario.
Simon mtg: guys, our volume are down
Simon staff: I hear it’s cuz grocery stores are hardcoding the register to prevent users from swiping the card.
Simon Mtg: hmm… what can we do…?
Staff: oh hey! Why don’t we just create a new card that’s not blocked?
Mtg: great idea! Why didn’t I think of that? Let’s go with that and promote it so everyone knows this card is not blocked!
Doesn’t matter if it’s “easier to liquidate”. Way too expensive to be worthwhile. Hard pass.