Last week, in the post “Plinking gift cards” I described the rewards program called Plink, and I showed that it should be possible to get the equivalent of a 6% rebate when buying $50 gift cards from Kmart or Sears. I have since had a chance to test a few things with Sears and Kmart and can now report some new details.
Buy from Sears, reward from Kmart
Plink offers both Sears and Kmart as options to put into your “Plink Wallet”. When you buy physical Sears’ gift cards online at Sears.com, your credit card is charged as if the purchase was made at Kmart. As a result, it is necessary to have Kmart in your Plink wallet if you want to get Plink rewards when buying gift cards at Sears.com.
No need to buy a pack of gum
The Plink offer for Kmart says the following on their website: “300 Plink Points
for purchases above $50.” Since it said “above $50” I thought one would need to spend at least $50.01 to get 300 Plink points for a purchase. Reader al613 stated that it wasn’t necessary:
No pack of gum needed. I often buy $50 at kmart and get full points for $50.
I tested this and found that al613 was right. A $50 purchase results in the full 300 Plink Points. This is further proven by the iPhone app which has different language for the same offer:
Notice that on the iPhone it says you can get 300 Plink Points for spending “$50 or more.” That’s great news because it makes it possible to maximize Plink returns by spending exactly $50.
You can increase your rewards from Sears’ purchases by starting in a shopping portal. It used to be possible to get points for buying e-gift cards, but Sears has stopped awarding points for those. The key is to go through a shopping portal to Sears to buy physical gift cards. Usually, points are awarded for these even if the terms & conditions say that gift cards are not eligible. I’m in the process of testing out a number of portals to make sure this still works, but I have no reason to believe it doesn’t. Even though the Sears’ website clearly says that gift cards are sold and shipped by Kmart, shopping portal points are still awarded as if you have made a Sears purchase.
So, the Double Dip goes like this:
- Go through an online portal to Sears.com and buy a $50 physical Sears gift card
- Pay with a card registered to Plink. Make sure Kmart is in your Plink Wallet.
With the above process you should receive both portal points (or cash back for a cash back portal) and 300 Plink points worth $3 (6% of $50). How much you get back from the online portal depends on how many points per dollar is being offered at the time you click through.
An easy triple dip is to follow the above steps to get your $50 Sears gift card and then go through an online portal again to Sears, Lands End, or Kmart to spend the gift card.
At the time I’m writing this, the AAdvantage eShopping portal is offering a fantastic 9 miles per dollar for Sears purchases.
I have no idea how long this promotion will continue though. My guess is it may be gone by this weekend. We’ll see. If the 9X deal were to last a while, though, it should be possible to do the above triple dip so as to earn 18X AA miles from Sears’ purchases and get 6% back via Plink in the form of Walmart or Amazon.com gift cards!
UPDATE: The 9X offer is scheduled to go through 7/27 (Saturday). So, hurry!
Signing up for Plink
I’ve added a signup link for Plink on my Sign-Up Links page (found under the Resources tab on my site). You’ll find details of the latest signup offer there.
Um… what are people doing with these gift cards from Sears? I haven’t bought anything from Sears in years.
buy other GCs like pin enabled visa and MC
[…] my July post, “Plinking Sears,” I introduced the idea of double-dipping when buying Sears gift cards by earning both Plink […]
Gabe: Yes, you can earn points when buying from other sellers as long as you are still on Sears.com and can “add to cart”
Can you earn points/miles when buying items from Sears ShopYourWay Sellers, or does it have to be Sears only items? I would imagine it’s a “yes” since it’s still sears.com, but just want to be sure.
[…] Shopping portal for $5 off a $50 purchase (SEARS2013) and I earned Sears Shop Your Way Points. You can also earn Plink points, but I haven’t taken the time to do that yet […]
[…] for gift cards such as Amazon.com, Walmart, and many others via the Tango card. See “Plinking Sears” for […]
[…] my post “Plinking Sears“, I showed how one could double dip at Sears by shopping through an online portal and paying […]
1) buy stuff at Sears, Kmart, Lands End, etc.; or
2) find the secret gift card rack within Sears and use Sears’ gift cards to buy other gift cards.
but what do you do with a sears (or kmart or any other) gift card plz???
Mastroadam: Thanks for the tip!
Jason: You would have to make 1 $50 gift card purchase per order
Tao: Yes, the HI card no longer works at Sears.com.
Has Home Improvement cards stopped working at Sears online? I tried a few times and always got an error message.
So could I add 4 $50 Sears gift cards to my cart through the AA portal and earn the plink points on everything in my cart?
Or would the deal only work by purchasing 1 $50 Sears gift card per order. Then I would get 300 plink points per order.
thanks for the clarification.
sounds like “Pinking Shears”
Quick heads up before this dies:
Go to USAA, get auto insurance, pay premium with any flavor you like, cancel insurance. When you go to cancel they will ask you how you would like your prorated portion back and one option is to have it credited back into your checking account.
This worked with $97, report back with how high you can go. This may also work with other insurance companies.
Frequent flyer: you get a Catalina printout at the Kmart register.
mastroadam: That’s great. thanks.
Is it possible to combine the multiple $50 Sears physical gift cards into a single gift card at the store?
subscribe – no way to do that without burning a comment, right?
By the way, I just have to comment how much I love this kind of old school miler posts. For those you new to the blog, Miler is the king of double/triple dipping; he did some fantastic work on his search for the perpetual points machine.
As he stated in one of his old posts, these little schemes can help fill the time until the next really big score.
THEsocalledfan: Thanks! Congrats on finding a nice Kmart 🙂
ChiliPalmer: That’s right, unfortunately you do need to comment to subscribe to the comments.
PdxDfwFlyer: I assume that you can combine them at the store, but honestly I’ve never tried.
Just stopped by Kmart in Sioux Falls; had been ages since I sopped by as I have always been rejected trying to buy gift cards with Sears gift cards, but this stuff is awesome.
Confirmed mine has BP cards which are extremely valuable. I can finally get them to let me do it, I should be able to buy a bunch of $50 Sears Gift Cards, get 9X back on the lot, plus Plink a bunch of points. I would then buy BP gift cards if they let me and fill my tanks. That kills the Chase Freedom measly 5%. 🙂
You can buy sears GC’s at gift card rescue at 12% off right now…why would I settle for 6%. Also if you purchase 150 worth of 3rd party gift cards you will get a catalina printout for .30 cents off per gal at bp. So 12% off @ giftcardrescue+ 2% cashback on fidelity AMEX+.30 cents off a gal @ bp. That’s almost 25% off BP gas.
For those that are Lifetime Fitness members you can get Sears gift cards for 10% off through their Member Advantage program. These can be e-certificates so you could use them right away, so you could get 10% off + 9x points through AA portal.
Chris: Thanks, great suggestion
Mastroadam: How do you get a catalina printout when buying gift cards from gift card rescue? Is that a standard offer?
I really am going to have to jump into this one as I have recently really started using the ‘Shop Your Way’ Sears and Kmart rewards program and they have been amazingly generous.
It started at Kmart with redeeming a Sears gift card purchased at a supermarket $10 off $100 deal. I went and bought a $50 BP gift card and the register printed out 4-5 coupons including one that gave 10,000 points for $30 purchase.
So back I went to Kmart and bought basic items like milk and soda. Presto, 10,000 free points ($10.00) value.
Lo and behold, last night I get an email from Shopyourway telling me if I redeem ANY points before X date they’ll bonus me the same amount of points! My mind is kind of spinning as I have other ‘Spend $X earn 10,000 Points’ coupons yet to use (sporting goods, household goods, etc).
I’m not quite sure how Shopyourway fits in with Plink, etc, but the points earning potential is good there as long as the coupons flow.
Willy: That’s a really good point! (no pun intended). You can sometimes do really well earning Sears’ Shop Your Way points in addition to all of the savings and points earnings I detailed in this post.
Wouldn’t it still be a better deal to buy Lands’ End gift certificates since they usually run double or more the cash back from Sears?
After buying the physical card from sears, via AA mall x9, [free standard shipping], I should be able to go to sears or kmart and buy some debit card (visa/amex), right?
The debit card w/ pin could then be liquidated using BB, right?
Hutch: Yes, maybe. The trick is finding the gift card rack at Sears that has Visa gift cards (it can be very hard to find and most employees don’t even know about it). Or, at Kmart, you may find that they don’t allow you to buy gift cards with gift cards.
Anita: sometimes it can be a better deal to buy gift cards from Lands End. It just depends on how many points or how much cash back is being offered. I don’t think you’ll find anything as good as 9X AA with Lands End. Also, you won’t earn Plink points that way (I don’t think).
Will you get miles through AA eShoppingMall to buy physical Sears GC? Thanks!
sadly never found anything worth while buying at Sears, Kmart or lands end. I have a bunch of $10 Sears GCs since the United promotion (buy 2x$10 get 500 United points).
Mypoints has a 1000 pt. bonus if you sign up for Plink with them. Makes it a 4 bagger.
Val: Thanks for that tip. I don’t see the offer, though, when I log into MyPoints. How do you find it?
ABC: I’m kind of surprised since Sears has such a large selection of stuff. Sometimes I go to Sears to buy gift cards, though.
KZ: I can’t guarantee it, but yes it should work.
Can you buy Sears GC through the AA eShoppingMall using a CC?
Kalboz: Yes, log into the shopping portal and search for Sears. Click through to Sears.com and search for gift cards. Buy buy physical (send via mail) gift cards.
If you register a card with the AAdvantage eShopping and use it at Sears in-store, do you get the 9x offer? Anyone know if buying gift cards in store would work to get the 9x?
I received an email yesterday from the AA eShoppingMall stating: Sears, “9 miles per dollar
Now through 7/27 online”
So load up, this one will not likely be around long!
Dale M: I received the email from AA overnight as well. So, I’ve updated the post to give the 7/27 end date. Thanks!
Hayden: The list of stores available for in-store bonus points from AAdvantage eShopping is different than the list for online shopping. Kmart and Sears are not on the in-store list.