Author Topic: What are some hands free ways to meet minimal debit card purchases each month?  (Read 2237 times)

RedMaple

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I'm interested in opening a bank account with a high yield interest rate, but one of the requirements is doing 10 debit card purchases per month. What are some hands free approaches? Ideally, I would prefer to set it up and not have to do anything else - ie: not buy a gift card and then have to spend the money on the gift card.

RetiredAt63

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Is there a minimum purchase requirement on the debit card purchases?  Otherwise surely you buy 10 things a month?  I could do that just on groceries.

Note: I'm in Canada and debit cards are accepted virtually everywhere.  I can get a $1.40 coffee at Tim's on a debit card.  If it is different where you are, I apologize for sounding flippant.

frugaliknowit

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Buying a gift card would be one transaction.  You need 10 or more...

The only hands free thing you can do is set up auto payments for bills using the debit card.  The downside of this is if you are a "credit cards rewards whore" as I am, you are trading cash back for debit card transactions so you can get high interest.

What I do is write down the statement cycles on an envelope.  I make tiny transactions with the debit card, place the receipt in the envelope, and place a checkmark next to the statement cycle, until there are 10-12 (I usually throw in a few extra, in case I mis-count) within the current statement cycle.  I do this on 2 checking accounts.

If you are going to do this, you need to put in a few minutes a day keeping track of things.  It's worth it to me.  I make $100 per month interest on 2 accounts.
« Last Edit: November 10, 2015, 11:53:43 AM by frugaliknowit »

catccc

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Do you make charitable contributions regularly?  If so, there are a number of charities that will auto-debit your card for as little as $1 a month.  This is really old, but there was a thread on fatwallet about it years (and years) ago:
http://www.fatwallet.com/forums/finance/765803/

Since it is so old, you might want to double check with the charities that it is still okay to make a contribution that size.

If that's a no-go, and you don't mind spending a bit of time making your purchases, I'd hit the grocery store self checkout and buy 10 bananas in 10 separate transactions once a month.  Make it at the beginning of the statement cycle so you aren't cutting it close and you know you are good for a while.
If the bananas start to go before you can finish them up, cut them into chunks and freeze them.  They are yummy frozen.  Like a little hunk of ice cream, almost.  Or just leave them out for co-workers.  They'll probably appreciate them, and bananas are so inexpensive.

PMG

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Do you pay bills online?  My electric bill can be payed by credit or debit card and in multiple transactions.  In theory I could set it up for nine $1 payments and 1 automatic remaining balance payment.  The electric company would hate it I'm sure.  Even if you couldn't fully automate it it could be quick and easy online and not creating extra spending.

frugaliknowit

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Another technique I use is:  Let's say I am buying a large amount of groceries and want my cash rewards, but need a debit purchase.  I will take one small item, ask the clerk to ring it separately (with the debit card), then pay for the balance of the groceries with the credit card.  I know, it holds up the line, but other people do all kinds of BS...

kimmarg

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Gas? Groceries? I put everything on the debit card!