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Author Topic: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com  (Read 9517 times)

jamal utah

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Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« on: November 24, 2014, 12:26:19 PM »
I purchase most hard goods from Amazon.com primarily because there is no sales tax (it is 9% in my area) and the prices are typically better (if they aren't better, I get it elsewhere).  I am trying to figure out which credit card would be best to use for future amazon purchases so that I can maximize rewards/cash back.  I recently heard about the Sallie Mae Mastercard that gives you %5 back on gas and groceries up to $250 per category per month and 5% back on bookstores up to $750 per month, which includes amazon.   There is no monthly fee and the monthly limits would not be problematic for me.

Does anyone have experience with this card or have a suggestion about another card that they prefer for amazon purchases?

Thanks.

Mrs3F

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2014, 12:46:07 PM »
I have the Chase Amazon Visa.  It gives 3% back for Amazon purchases, 2% for some other categories, and 1% for the rest.  This is linked back to your amazon account and you can use the points immediately (no minimums) or let them build up.  I usually let my points pile up until the holidays and then do my shopping for "free". 

I also got a $50 sign-up bonus, which was a nice perk. 


Helvegen

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2014, 01:08:15 PM »
I have the Chase Amazon Visa.  It gives 3% back for Amazon purchases, 2% for some other categories, and 1% for the rest.  This is linked back to your amazon account and you can use the points immediately (no minimums) or let them build up.  I usually let my points pile up until the holidays and then do my shopping for "free". 

I also got a $50 sign-up bonus, which was a nice perk.

This. I also recommend this card.

ketchup

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2014, 01:14:14 PM »
I purchase most hard goods from Amazon.com primarily because there is no sales tax (it is 9% in my area) and the prices are typically better (if they aren't better, I get it elsewhere).  I am trying to figure out which credit card would be best to use for future amazon purchases so that I can maximize rewards/cash back.  I recently heard about the Sallie Mae Mastercard that gives you %5 back on gas and groceries up to $250 per category per month and 5% back on bookstores up to $750 per month, which includes amazon.   There is no monthly fee and the monthly limits would not be problematic for me.

Does anyone have experience with this card or have a suggestion about another card that they prefer for amazon purchases?

Thanks.
I have the Sallie Mae card and it's great for gas/groceries/Amazon.com.  I've had it for almost two years.  Only issue I had was it being flagged for suspicious activity during a long-haul roadtrip.  Apparently four transactions in one day in four different states is suspicious, even if they're all gas stations.

seattlecyclone

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #4 on: November 24, 2014, 01:14:29 PM »
I have the Chase Amazon Visa.  It gives 3% back for Amazon purchases, 2% for some other categories, and 1% for the rest.  This is linked back to your amazon account and you can use the points immediately (no minimums) or let them build up.  I usually let my points pile up until the holidays and then do my shopping for "free". 

A tip: using your points for Amazon purchases is a suboptimal strategy. Suppose you have 10,000 points. You can use the points to buy $100 worth of stuff on Amazon. Alternatively, you can use the points to get $100 cash back. If you take the latter option, you can then charge your $100 worth of Amazon purchases to your credit card, which will get you an additional 3,000 points compared to if you had made your purchase with points directly.

It's not a big difference in the grand scheme of things, but every little bit helps!

TJ79

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #5 on: November 24, 2014, 01:23:35 PM »
Chase Freedom gives 5x points/$ in Q4. Otherwise, use I Chase Ink Plus to buy Amazon gift cards at office supply stores.


brooklynguy

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #6 on: November 24, 2014, 01:26:58 PM »
You should also always think about how to maximize rewards by purchasing indirectly instead of directly, through the purchase of gift cards.  Gift cards to Amazon are sold at all sorts of different retail locations (Lowes, various pharmacy chains, supermarkets, etc.) where you can earn high percentage rewards on various credit cards.

Villanelle

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #7 on: November 24, 2014, 01:28:15 PM »
This SM card gives you 5% on *all* Amazon purchases, not just books?!!

I may be getting a new CC!

jamal utah

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #8 on: November 24, 2014, 01:36:01 PM »
This SM card gives you 5% on *all* Amazon purchases, not just books?!!

I may be getting a new CC!

That is my understanding.  Given that you also get 5% on gas and groceries, it seems like a solid choice.

 I understand the comments about buying amazon gift cards at lowes, grocery stores etc., but you rarely see rewards of any type in excess of 5%.  So why take the indirect route to get the same savings?  Unless there is a 10% reward at lowe's card that I am unaware of. 

Mrs3F

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #9 on: November 24, 2014, 01:36:40 PM »
I have the Chase Amazon Visa.  It gives 3% back for Amazon purchases, 2% for some other categories, and 1% for the rest.  This is linked back to your amazon account and you can use the points immediately (no minimums) or let them build up.  I usually let my points pile up until the holidays and then do my shopping for "free". 

A tip: using your points for Amazon purchases is a suboptimal strategy. Suppose you have 10,000 points. You can use the points to buy $100 worth of stuff on Amazon. Alternatively, you can use the points to get $100 cash back. If you take the latter option, you can then charge your $100 worth of Amazon purchases to your credit card, which will get you an additional 3,000 points compared to if you had made your purchase with points directly.

It's not a big difference in the grand scheme of things, but every little bit helps!

If we're talking about this specific card, I don't believe there's a cash-out option...... but i'll definitely be looking into it.  In general, there may be other ways to maximize return - I just really like this card because I don't have to wait to amass a large point balance.  And it is so easy to access the points.

Mrs3F

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #10 on: November 24, 2014, 01:58:10 PM »
I have the Chase Amazon Visa.  It gives 3% back for Amazon purchases, 2% for some other categories, and 1% for the rest.  This is linked back to your amazon account and you can use the points immediately (no minimums) or let them build up.  I usually let my points pile up until the holidays and then do my shopping for "free". 

A tip: using your points for Amazon purchases is a suboptimal strategy. Suppose you have 10,000 points. You can use the points to buy $100 worth of stuff on Amazon. Alternatively, you can use the points to get $100 cash back. If you take the latter option, you can then charge your $100 worth of Amazon purchases to your credit card, which will get you an additional 3,000 points compared to if you had made your purchase with points directly.

It's not a big difference in the grand scheme of things, but every little bit helps!

If we're talking about this specific card, I don't believe there's a cash-out option...... but i'll definitely be looking into it.  In general, there may be other ways to maximize return - I just really like this card because I don't have to wait to amass a large point balance.  And it is so easy to access the points.

I have this card and you can definitely get a statement credit or deposit into your Chase checking account; I do it monthly.

I can't believe I didn't know this.  Thanks!

jamal utah

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #11 on: November 24, 2014, 03:24:44 PM »
I purchase most hard goods from Amazon.com primarily because there is no sales tax (it is 9% in my area) and the prices are typically better (if they aren't better, I get it elsewhere).  I am trying to figure out which credit card would be best to use for future amazon purchases so that I can maximize rewards/cash back.  I recently heard about the Sallie Mae Mastercard that gives you %5 back on gas and groceries up to $250 per category per month and 5% back on bookstores up to $750 per month, which includes amazon.   There is no monthly fee and the monthly limits would not be problematic for me.

Does anyone have experience with this card or have a suggestion about another card that they prefer for amazon purchases?

Thanks.
I have the Sallie Mae card and it's great for gas/groceries/Amazon.com.  I've had it for almost two years.  Only issue I had was it being flagged for suspicious activity during a long-haul roadtrip.  Apparently four transactions in one day in four different states is suspicious, even if they're all gas stations.

Good to hear.  Do you get the 5% at Amazon across the board or just with purchases from Amazon LLC.  In other words does the vendor that sells the product on Amazon dictate whether or not you get the 5%?

sheepstache

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #12 on: November 24, 2014, 03:42:20 PM »
My experience with the SM card is it's 5% across the board at Amazon no matter the product or vendor.

Pooperman

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #13 on: November 24, 2014, 04:36:22 PM »
I blieve that it is possible to get above 10% off amazon by getting gift cards with the savingstar Amex (10% off) plus using one of those cash back online sites for a couple % more.

boognish

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #14 on: November 24, 2014, 04:50:54 PM »
I use my Amex Blue Cash Preferred to get 6% cash back on Amazon gift cards from the grocery store (annual fee of $89 but the numbers add up for me)

jamal utah

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #15 on: November 24, 2014, 05:02:38 PM »
I use my Amex Blue Cash Preferred to get 6% cash back on Amazon gift cards from the grocery store (annual fee of $89 but the numbers add up for me)

I've looked at that card too, but the annual fee turned me off a bit.  Isn't there a limit on the 6% cash back to only a few thousand dollars in purchases?

vagon

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #16 on: November 24, 2014, 05:05:49 PM »
I blieve that it is possible to get above 10% off amazon by getting gift cards with the savingstar Amex (10% off) plus using one of those cash back online sites for a couple % more.


Absolutely, use ebates (referral link) and they regularly have 1% off giftcards and also 3-6% off various amazon products. It does take a looooong time to get cash back, but its still very low effort.

So you could do something like, go to ebates and get 1% off GiftCardMall.com to buy a amazon giftcard. Then go back into ebates and get referred for 3%  to 6% off amazon. I dont actually see the 3-6% discounts for groceries, but I'm in Sydney so I never use Amazon for groceries any how.

kpd905

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #17 on: November 24, 2014, 06:51:13 PM »
I use my Amex Blue Cash Preferred to get 6% cash back on Amazon gift cards from the grocery store (annual fee of $89 but the numbers add up for me)

I've looked at that card too, but the annual fee turned me off a bit.  Isn't there a limit on the 6% cash back to only a few thousand dollars in purchases?

The limit is up to $6000 per year.  It is better to get the card with the fee if you spend over $208 a month in the grocery category.  Otherwise the no fee card that gives 3% back is better.

But it is easy to pad the grocery category by buying gift cards.  I buy reloads for my cell phone, restaurant gift cards, Visa gift cards to send to my student loans, gas cards.

jamal utah

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #18 on: November 25, 2014, 09:07:14 AM »
I use my Amex Blue Cash Preferred to get 6% cash back on Amazon gift cards from the grocery store (annual fee of $89 but the numbers add up for me)

I've looked at that card too, but the annual fee turned me off a bit.  Isn't there a limit on the 6% cash back to only a few thousand dollars in purchases?

The limit is up to $6000 per year.  It is better to get the card with the fee if you spend over $208 a month in the grocery category.  Otherwise the no fee card that gives 3% back is better.

But it is easy to pad the grocery category by buying gift cards.  I buy reloads for my cell phone, restaurant gift cards, Visa gift cards to send to my student loans, gas cards.

Hmm... So Amex is $6,000 max at 6% + $89 fee = Max cash back in 6% category of $271.  And SM Mastercard is $15,000 max at 5% with no fee and no gift cards to keep organized = Max cash back in 5% category of $750.   I guess you could do both cards and max out the amex and then move to the SM card,  but it seems if you could only choose one between the two, then the SM card would be superior.

boognish

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #19 on: November 25, 2014, 09:44:41 AM »
Damn! Whenever I think I've got my CC lineup perfected, I find another card that does x better. SM card is good indeed, I didn't know that that Amazon purchases fell under the bookstore category.

sheepstache

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #20 on: November 25, 2014, 10:33:58 AM »
Damn! Whenever I think I've got my CC lineup perfected, I find another card that does x better. SM card is good indeed, I didn't know that that Amazon purchases fell under the bookstore category.

Seriously, I'm super happy ketchup mentioned it on this forum. It's my go-to card now and I've gotten way more cash back than I would have otherwise.

Chicken

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #21 on: November 25, 2014, 10:50:44 AM »
I purchase most hard goods from Amazon.com primarily because there is no sales tax (it is 9% in my area) and the prices are typically better (if they aren't better, I get it elsewhere).  I am trying to figure out which credit card would be best to use for future amazon purchases so that I can maximize rewards/cash back.  I recently heard about the Sallie Mae Mastercard that gives you %5 back on gas and groceries up to $250 per category per month and 5% back on bookstores up to $750 per month, which includes amazon.   There is no monthly fee and the monthly limits would not be problematic for me.

Does anyone have experience with this card or have a suggestion about another card that they prefer for amazon purchases?

Thanks.

You still are on the hook for use taxes even if you aren't paying them.  Virtually every state has use taxes now to account for people not paying sales tax on out of state purchases.  I'm guessing you are in Utah based on your name.  http://incometax.utah.gov/topics/use-tax

Sure you can buy everything online and claim you bought nothing online as far as use taxes when you file your taxes, but since every transaction is electronic it sure would be easy to track if you ever get audited.

jamal utah

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #22 on: November 25, 2014, 11:01:31 AM »
I purchase most hard goods from Amazon.com primarily because there is no sales tax (it is 9% in my area) and the prices are typically better (if they aren't better, I get it elsewhere).  I am trying to figure out which credit card would be best to use for future amazon purchases so that I can maximize rewards/cash back.  I recently heard about the Sallie Mae Mastercard that gives you %5 back on gas and groceries up to $250 per category per month and 5% back on bookstores up to $750 per month, which includes amazon.   There is no monthly fee and the monthly limits would not be problematic for me.

Does anyone have experience with this card or have a suggestion about another card that they prefer for amazon purchases?

Thanks.

You still are on the hook for use taxes even if you aren't paying them.  Virtually every state has use taxes now to account for people not paying sales tax on out of state purchases.  I'm guessing you are in Utah based on your name.  http://incometax.utah.gov/topics/use-tax

Sure you can buy everything online and claim you bought nothing online as far as use taxes when you file your taxes, but since every transaction is electronic it sure would be easy to track if you ever get audited.

You're right, but I would venture to guess than less than 1% of folks report online purchases on their taxes.  The risk is there, but I think the laws will change requiring Amazon to start collecting sales tax before they start going after individuals on their taxes.  I'm in Colorado btw.

FarmerPete

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #23 on: December 09, 2014, 12:03:34 PM »
I use my Amex Blue Cash Preferred to get 6% cash back on Amazon gift cards from the grocery store (annual fee of $89 but the numbers add up for me)

I've looked at that card too, but the annual fee turned me off a bit.  Isn't there a limit on the 6% cash back to only a few thousand dollars in purchases?

The limit is up to $6000 per year.  It is better to get the card with the fee if you spend over $208 a month in the grocery category.  Otherwise the no fee card that gives 3% back is better.

But it is easy to pad the grocery category by buying gift cards.  I buy reloads for my cell phone, restaurant gift cards, Visa gift cards to send to my student loans, gas cards.

Hmm... So Amex is $6,000 max at 6% + $89 fee = Max cash back in 6% category of $271.  And SM Mastercard is $15,000 max at 5% with no fee and no gift cards to keep organized = Max cash back in 5% category of $750.   I guess you could do both cards and max out the amex and then move to the SM card,  but it seems if you could only choose one between the two, then the SM card would be superior.

SM is 5% on $250 a month on gas, $250 on groceries, and $750 on books/Amazon.  That does add up to $15k a year, but most people spend more than $250 a month on groceries.  For those people, the Amex card can certainly be a better bet.  If you spent $500 a month on groceries, with the Amex 6% card, you'd make $271.  With the SM card, you'd make $180 (5% on $250 and 1% on $250).  Another thing to note is that the Amex Preferred card often has a signup bonus.  I just signed up and got $150 when I spent $1000 in 3 months.  That's enough to pay for the annual fee for almost the first two years.

RelaxedGal

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Re: Best CC to Maximize Amazon.com
« Reply #24 on: December 09, 2014, 01:31:15 PM »
You should also always think about how to maximize rewards by purchasing indirectly instead of directly, through the purchase of gift cards.  Gift cards to Amazon are sold at all sorts of different retail locations (Lowes, various pharmacy chains, supermarkets, etc.) where you can earn high percentage rewards on various credit cards.

I've heard that the warehouse clubs sell gift cards at 5% off, for what that's worth.  I'm going to explore that at BJ's when I cash in my Groupon this week.