Don't miss out! Join the thousands of people who subscribe to our once-daily email or our free miles and points Facebook group with all the best travel news. Some links on this page may pay me a commission - as always, thanks for your support if you use them

searslogoSears has been on my mind lately.  It started with the amazing opportunity to get up to 29x on miles from Sears through the United shopping portal.

(SEE ALSO: Earning miles through shopping portals)

Then after that I had to call into Sears to get my Shop your Way Rewards points back since they had recently expired.  I’ll have a full recap of my adventures in Sears shortly (waiting on all the miles to post), but in the meantime I thought I’d mention how to get your e-gift cards in a timely fashion.


If you buy Sears gift cards, there is a simple trick to get your gift cards through the verification process in order to get them ASAP – just call the verification line!

Using Sears gift cards to maximize portal bonuses

sears-shop-your-way-expireIn order to get the full bonus, you have to double dip with shopping portals.  So for example, on the 29x miles from Sears mentioned above, the ACTUAL portal mileage payout was only 12x.

  • Go through the portal first to get gift cards, earning 12x
  • Then go BACK through the portal and buy merchandise, earning ANOTHER 12x, and paying with your gift cards

(The extra 5x miles comes from the fact that Sears is a department store and earns 5x back this quarter on the Chase Freedom card.

(SEE ALSO: Chase Freedom calendar for 2015 posted)

Getting Sears gift cards in a timely fashion

Since these shopping portal bonuses usually have limited shelf-life (sometimes as little as 1 day!), you want to make sure to get your gift cards quickly.  Unfortunately, Sears has a fraud prevention department that verifies large gift card purchases.  Fortunately, it’s pretty easy to expedite the process.

Anytime after about 30 minutes or so after your Sears gift card order, call Sears Security at 1-888-396-5299.

After verifying your basic information, they will also give you the ENHANCED security, pulling what we call the Lexus / Nexus questions, things like “according to your driver’s license, how tall are you” or “which of these addresses have you ever lived at”. I asked the lady I was talking to about it, and she said they only do that every 60 days, so if you bought additional gift cards within that 60 day period, you’ll only get the regular security.

In these instances, I always feel like Sir Galahad trying to cross the bridge

WHAT is your favorite color?  Blue! No, Yellow!  AAAAAAAAAGH

Sign up for our once-daily email with the latest tips and tricks on how to travel for free / cheap. 

You have Successfully Subscribed!