(EXPIRED) More easy rewards: Staples fee-free $200 Mastercard gift cards

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Staples will again be offering $200 Mastercard Gift Cards with no purchase fee from Sunday, 3/24/24 through Saturday, 3/30/24. Note that the new limit of eight per customer per day is listed, but some may be able to purchase more at their local store.

This promotion is good towards fixed-value $200 MC gift cards only. It will not work on the variable load cards that many Staples now carry.

a card with a silver and gold ribbon

The Deal

  • Staples will be offering fee-free Mastercard gift cards from Sunday 3/24/24 through Saturday, 3/30/24.
  • Direct link to weekly ad (3/24 ad, page 5)

Key Details

  • Valid in-store only
  • Limit of 8 per customer per day

Quick Thoughts

These deals can be great way of getting rewards through spending at office supply stores. If you can buy 8 at a time, that’s a potential of $1,600 that’s possible each day. Note that some stores may allow you to purchase more than 8, and we also hear occasional reports that some managers will only sell a smaller amount despite what the ad says.

See our Current Visa and Mastercard Gift Card deals page for other currently-available deals.

This fee-free Mastercard promotion recently ran on the following dates:

  • 2/25/24 – 3/2/24
  • 1/28/24-2/3/24
  • 12/31/23-1/6/24
  • 12/3/23-12/9/23
  • 11/5/23-11/11/13
  • 10/8/23-10/14/23
  • 9/10/23-9/16/23
  • 8/13/23-8/19/23
  • 7/16/23-7/22/23
  • 5/21/23 – 5/27/23
  • 4/23-4/29/23
  • 3/26/23-4/1/23
  • 2/26/23-3/4/23
  • 1/29/23-2/4/23
  • 12/4-12/10/22
  • 11/13/22 – 11/19/22
  • 10/30/22 – 11/5/22
  • 8/21/22 – 8/27/22
  • 7/17/22 – 7/23/22
  • 6/26/22 – 7/2/22
  • 5/22/22 to 5/28/22
  • 4/24/22 to 4/30/22
  • 3/20/22 to 3/26/22
  • 2/6/22 to 2/12/22
  • 12/5/21 to 12/11/21
  • 11/14/21 to 11/20/21
  • 10/10/21 to 10/16/21
  • 8/22/21 to 8/28/21
  • 7/18-7/24/21
  • 6/27-7/3/21
  • 4/25/21 to 5/1/21
  • 3/28/21 to 4/3/21

H/T: GC Galore

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209 Comments
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Max

Just a note that I’ve used these Mastercards (and the Visas Staples sells) to pay rent many times and never had an issue. Now not working, despite me registering the cards and confirming the balance. I tried multiple Mastercard gift cards and all failed, then also tried a SoFi Mastercard debit to test and it did work.

Looks like at least 2 other people are having this same issue. Until it’s resolved, I would not purchase these. I now have $3,000 in Mastercard gift cards I need to find ways to liquidate.

Ryan James

These $200 MasterCard gift cards just stopped working for a couple of my utility payments. Never had this issue before. Tried multiple gift cards; all declined. Just a FYI.

Rob

Just declined at Godaddy for a website renewal charge. They are laughing at us.

DSK

Hi Tim. Don’t remember if you guys covered this, but there is an AMEX Offer out there for buy $325 of AMEX gift cards and get $25 back. There is a $5.95 service fee, but it is an easy $19.05 back for virtually no work since you can choose an e-gift card which gets delivered in about three minutes and can be used right away (I paid my telephone bill).

Larry

Would Chase be upset (like Amex) if I buy these gift cards to meet the $6k spend requirement on a Chase ink cash card?

Nate

wasn’t a problem for me

toomanybooks

Nope.

Julie

Re problems with MC card :

I’ve used these for a year and had problems twice .

1) When swiped, there was $20 less on it than I had just confirmed it having.
( There were no pending purchases).

2) Triple A auto club would not accept for on-line membership application

Last edited 2 months ago by Julie
Stephen Fan Club President

Thanks Stephen, I love your website GC Galore

Al Saito

Are there still problems with the Mastercard Gift Cards? On the Staples website, there are many negative comments but many are at least 3 years old. Since I haven’t seen many recent negative comments, does this mean that Mastercard has resolved the activation issue? If you have any recent experience with these cards, positive or negative, then please let us know.

rj123456

It’s not live yet

Nick

Walmart would not accept the Mastercard in person last round or today. I buy them on occasion just to get 5x on some regular spend and have not had trouble before.

eli104

Consider calling ahead… went into Staples in Branford, CT, and was told they rarely have the $200 M/C gift cards. In fact, the assistant manager was quite rude about it, and said he didn’t know anything about the promotion.

anna

unable to register card

kukuki

same here, visa would not register, but the card works for online purchases, the past 4 months too many problems with these cards, not sure what is happening that about 1 in 10 cards are faulty in some way, had recently a MC card with several transactions just fine until at $6.59 left it stopped working, declined in person transactions as well as online, giftcardmall sent me a replacement card for that amount, this issues cost them money, it costs all of us money

Charles Davis

I often get paid with cards- gift & reloadable-multiple ones every week. Only some are Vanilla, but here’s pertinent info to help you- and much of it has already been provided by others here.

1. Prefer Visa over MC. It’s just accepted at more places- including between banks & processors, not just stores.
Example A- Cashing (also labeled free advance) reloadable prepaid cards at a bank teller- I’ve yet to find a bank or credit union that won’t do it with Visa, conversely MC works at very few places not BoA or Chase.
Example B- From same provider…its Visa has online ACH transfer option, but not its MC.
Example C- Similarly online. My cellular provider but one example where only the Visa variant works.

2. Yes, registering it online helps with more acceptance, but it’s no magic bullet. Be prepared for card to work first time and then no more, as others have reported- even with the big Wallets & Fintechs.
A. The following not an option with Vanilla, but with reloadables you can bug the bank to send a replacement card printed in your name (those of you who do focus groups, product testing, clinical trials, surveys, gigs).

3. To foster a higher success rate and avoid shutdowns, try to add steps in between \ throw a few crumbs to everyone. When someone gives you free or cheap transfer, they’re often eating fee \ cost in hopes they can make it up with processing fees & third-party commissions on future purchases. So to avoid being categorized as a customer that will earn them zero fees, or suspicious money launderer (that in turn may trigger regulator focus on them), try to add steps \ purchases. I’m talking Fintechs, banks, Wallets, retailers…Coinbase, Cash App, Venmo, PP, Google, Apple Pay, Amazon, Walmart, Target, etc. Fund their wallet\card\account first, then transfer to your bank but not in identical amount & meantime try to buy something that you usually do with a different provider.
They’re too valuable to risk shutdown and can take many months to resolve disputes.

4. If you know what you’re doing & can devote the time you can use sports betting & Bitcoin buy \ sell, but research thoroughly Provider quirks. Coinbase & Cash App come to mind. One of them, besides directly with gift\prepaid cards, even lets you buy Crypto using PayPal (using your gift card registered inside PP) but card may only work first time, there are rules like max daily PER card OR Coin (to bypass Limit you have to switch card and\or crypto type purchased). And they give you false sense of security by vetting account with credit header info, but later on may want to do KYC (& not accept your ID).
FYI Cash\Venmo\PP\GPay allow 2 accounts, 2 of them allow AUs & minors each w\ own card. (Cash- obviously same SSN, but phone & email need to be different)

5.YMMV always, but this is true in other industries from food to electronics. Individual managers may not like or fully accept corporate promos. Or owe explanation, even to the point of lying that a promo (or any of its stated benefits) exists…even in corporate locations, not just franchisees.

6. Addresses in neighboring States can be helpful. For example Amex Serve (& others) monthly fees are forbidden in NY, TX, VT.
Contrarily, many Fintech brokers \ crypto exchanges \ banks, & now even mobile check deposit provider Ingo (serves many small banks \ fintechs- PP, Venmo, Serve, etc.), not available in NY & maybe a few other States.

7. Miscellaneous \ in between transfer tools useful at times- (also useful because some retail stores open 24\7 whereas bank ATM lobbies being closed to combat crime and homelessness).
Fidelity refund all ATM fees everywhere.
Chime can be loaded immediately w\ zero fees at Walgreen \ Duane Reade + use their ATMs at zero fees.
Serve (now has a Visa variant). Instant free loads at CVS & some Family Dollar, 7\11 & Walmart.
Cap One free instant deposits CVS counter.
Target Debit free at Target.

8. Cash emergencies- or when you just like to see instant transfers- with zero or little fees- besides #7 (maybe use same amount to fulfill fee-waive or bonus requirement at multiple banks).

Props to Cap One for Mobile Check Deposit- Large funds available instantly to purchase with or transfer out.

Zelle- (IF you’ve ascertained that your phone # & email address have NEVER been previously registered by someone else at Zelle or any other bank!), and PP \ Venmo \Cash.
When they support your particular bank, it’s just impressive to do instant transfer to Debit Card- even to Podunk little Credit Unions that take several days to verify ACH or Credit Card payment, funds listed immediately and available.

PS. Tim please mod out anything that doesn’t serve your purpose. Thanks.

Pamela Hill

Can these be purchased online? We don’t have a Staples here.

Kaza

Can confirm they’re more finicky. My registered MC gift cards didn’t get processed via PayPal Bill Pay when I paid my electric bill. Furthermore, instead of letting me pick a different payment option, it automatically defaults to a linked bank account without notifying me. I wouldn’t have known about that switch if I didn’t happen to look at my rarely used bank account’s balance a week later.

The switcheroo didn’t happen with physical Vanilla Visa or Visa e-gift cards.

nate nate

How long do people keep the cards after used up. I once got a refund to a pre-paid card one year later, and by that time I had thrown away the card. Fortunately it was ~$7, but there was a different refund of ~$100 that went to a pre-paid card I fortunately did keep.

Since then, my rule has been only to spend these cards at places I wouldn’t expect a refund, like grocery stores or utilities. I also keep the used cards in an old airline amenity kit in my sock drawer

The Other Sam

No refunds for MO’s. If possible in your area, pursue that.

Nate nate

Are these USPS money orders or WU? Is there a fee to buy with a debit card?

The Other Sam

Grocery stores – WU. At least for me. Usually around a buck for a MO <$500. Check Flyer Talk's manufactured spending forums for specifics. Tread carefully.

Carmelita Harley

I need to venture into this lane in order to start paying my car note with MO’s. Same for my mortgage. Looks like Plastiq has changed their fees. $100 to pay my mortgage with a Mastercard card. Is that worth it for $3,400 mortgage. It’s a lot when you multiply by 12×100.

Barry

Most places will give you a refund in store credit instead of refunding the original form of payment if you ask for it.