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As long as the office supply stores keep giving away free money, I will share the news here! And until someone gives me a better one, I will continue to use the Mad Lib construct to announce them.  Via Miles to Memories, I learned that we have another deal going on this week, through Saturday October 15th.

Solve the Mad Lib

Save _____ (amount) when you buy _______ (purchase amount) in _______ (type) Gift Cards at _______. Refund will be given as  ___________

This time, the Mad Lib answers are:

1) $15

2) $300

3) Visa

4) Office Max and Office Depot.  While previous deals were only at Office Max, the reports that I’m seeing are that now that the 2 are one company with one POS

5) instant rebate

In case you didn’t follow along, if you buy $300 in Visa gift cards this week at Office Max or Office Depot, you’ll get $15 off your order. I did not see it in the weekly ad, but there is signage in-store

officemax

Maximizing the Office Max free money deal

This is the best kind of these deals since the money comes off as an instant rebate, so in theory, you can scale it infinitely.  In practice, the stores quickly run out of $200 gift cards (if they ever have them).  Variable load gift cards are supposedly cash only, but YMMV by store.  Specifically, I was able to easily buy $20-$200 cards with a credit card.  I did not try the variable $500 cards.

Definitely I would recommend using a Chase Ink or other card that gives 5x points on office supply stores. I love the Chase Inks for exactly this reason.

I never know what to do when I show up at the store and they are (inevitably) out of the $200 gift cards. Do I just buy the $100 cards, even though the deal isn’t as lucrative, or do I try stopping back later at another store. I even wrote a poll about this (how much your time is worth) awhile back, and the consensus seemed to be to just buy the $100 cards in the store that you’re in, and not go back.

visa

Tricks to getting and/or unloading the cards

I’ve noticed at 2 of my 3 local Office Depot stores that for any gift card purchases over $200, they actually CALL in the authorization.  I don’t know what that does for them (I assume something fraud related), but it ends up taking like 10-15 minutes just to do one $590.85 order.  It is “corporate policy” supposedly…

These cards are typically issued by Metabank and should be PIN enabled, and thus loadable to Serve (if you have one), or used to purchase money orders

Doing the math

There’s a limit of 2 per customer, and my experience has been if you buy 3 $200 Visa cards (if you can FIND them!), you’ll spend $590.85 (after 2 $15 instant rebates), but then receive:

Definitely worth a stop to Office Max this week!!  Good luck finding any of the $200 cards left!

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