July 24, 2012
Last Friday, The Traveler’s Loophole reported “Earn 40 Delta Skymiles per dollar for Pet Supplies ~ Awesome Deal!” Then, on Monday, Deal’s We Like reported “Deal Alert: Get 40x Delta Miles at PetCareRX!!!” Yes, I do believe all those exclamation points are warranted. 40X is an amazing deal. If you need pet food, flea & tick products, etc. you can’t beat a 40 miles per dollar return. Even if PetCareRX is more expensive than where you would otherwise shop, this could be worth it to you depending on how highly you value Delta SkyMiles. If you believe the Fair Trading Price of Delta SkyMiles is 1.29 cents each, then 40 miles per dollar can be thought of as a 51.6% rebate!
Whenever I see a deal like this, I try to look for a way to leverage it to buy miles cheaply. The idea is to buy items that can be easily resold for as little loss as possible. In December, for example, I bought and sold cameras from Sears as a way to buy Ultimate Rewards points for .79 cents each. In February, I bought and sold headphones and watches from Nordstrom in order to buy British Airways Avios (I actually made money on that deal, so the Avios cost me nothing!). And, in June I bought and sold tablet computers from Sears in order to buy Southwest points for less than .4 cents each (and I earned a Companion Pass!).
For this deal to be worth it, I think the goal should be to buy Delta SkyMiles for about three quarters of a cent each. If the miles end up costing as much as a penny each that’s still a good deal, whereas if they cost as little as half a cent each you’re golden! An example may help make this clear:
Suppose you were to buy a $200 flea collar (a really good one!) and sell it for $160 on EBay. You would earn 8000 miles for your purchase. EBay fees would cost you about $19, and you would spend, let’s say, $6 more for shipping. Your cash loss then would come to $65. In other words, you would have paid $65 for 8000 SkyMiles. Your cost per mile = $65 / 8000 = .81 cents each. That’s just slightly above the target I suggested (.79 cents) so I see that as a good return.
Finding Stuff to Sell
This is the hard part! I try to find items that sell for around the same price as Amazon.com, but prices at PetCareRX appear to be a lot higher. Read the comments in Deal’s We Like post to see what others have found. Unfortunately, according to Delta Points, the PetCareRX Deal of the Day items don’t count for SkyMiles. Rats! I’m still looking… As of this writing, I haven’t found anything yet that I’m willing to gamble on.
- Go through this link to PetCareRX to get the Delta deal. If you go directly to PetCareRX you won’t get SkyMiles for your purchase.
- A maximum of 20,000 SkyMiles will be given per order. That means there is no reason to buy more than $500 worth of stuff in one order. Note that there is also some confusion about whether you’ll get points for more than one order. Luckily, Deals We Like captured a screenshot of her Live Chat with PetCareRX in which they confirmed that one could earn more SkyMiles by making more orders. I’ll still caution you, though, that the rep may have been wrong.
- The offer is good “for a limited time”. I couldn’t find any details at either Delta.com or PetCareRX that defined the end of “limited time”.
- Deal of the Day offers at PetCareRX might not qualify. They appear to qualify, but Deals We Like was told “no” by a rep. Buy these at your own risk and make sure to take a screen capture that shows the miles you will be awarded.