November 1, 2012
Home Depot and Lowes now offer 5 points per dollar. Freedom cardholders can still get 15X at Kohl’s.
Every month, the Ultimate Rewards Mall has new month-long specials. Last month, I wrote about the October specials in the post “Ultimate Rewards Mall October Edition.” Today, I’ll show you how things look for November.
As always, thanks goes to HikerT for updating his website that shows the Ultimate Rewards Mall payouts for different Chase cards. You can find his website here: lakebagger.com/ur/.
First the bad news
Here are some of the goodies from last month that went away:
- JCPenney dropped from 10X (Ink & Freedom) to 6X for all cardholders
- Buy.com dropped from 5X (Sapphire) to 1X for all cardholders
- Sephora dropped from 10X (Sapphire) to 7X for all cardholders
- Groupon dropped from 5X to 4X
Now on to the good stuff. Sadly, there’s very little to get excited about this month. It’s possible that Chase is purposely holding out on us. Last year, Chase ran a series of one day holiday specials that were scattered between late November and early December. Deals included (among others) Best Buy 10X, Apple 10X, and Sears 10X. Will Chase repeat these deals? Last year, these deals were already public by this time, but maybe Chase decided to keep it under wraps longer or maybe they haven’t yet finalized all of the plans. We can hope!
Here’s what is available now…
Kohl’s has repeated 10X every month for over a year, but it is still worth mentioning. This quarter, Freedom cardholders get 5X for shopping at Kohl’s (up to $1500 spend in bonus categories), and so will get 15X by shopping through the Ultimate Rewards Mall and paying with the Freedom card! Unfortunately, recent reader experiences have shown that Kohl’s will not pay out points when you buy gift cards from them, but they will pay points for orders paid for with gift cards. If you don’t have a Freedom card, checkout this old post of mine to see how to stack multiple discounts and rebates at Kohl’s: Fantastic points and savings at Kohl’s.
Home Depot 5X (up from 3X)
People have had success double-dipping by buying Home Depot gift cards elsewhere and then using them when shopping through the Ultimate Rewards Mall. For example, use a Chase Ink card to buy Home Depot gift cards at an office supply store (to get 5X), and then shop through the Ultimate Rewards Mall to Home Depot to get another 5X. A total of 10X is pretty good! Reports are mixed on whether points are awarded if the entire purchase is made with gift cards. If at all possible, pay a small portion of the total with a credit card to ensure that your points track appropriately.
Lowe’s 5X (up from 3X)
This is the same story as with Home Depot. Read the text above to see how to double dip.
ToysRUS 3X (up from 1X)
I’m reaching here! I wouldn’t normally list 3X as a “goodie”, but I expect that many people are thinking of buying toys this month in preparation for the holidays.
Yesterday I made some Ultimate Rewards Mall predictions. Let’s see how well I did:
- Home Depot or Lowes will increase from 3X to 5X. Correct! In reality, both Home Depot and Lowes increased to 5X!
- JCPenney will stay at 10X. Wrong. JCP dropped to 6X.
- Kohl’s will stay at 10X. Correct!
- Staples will increase from 2X to 4X. Wrong. Staples held steady at 2X.
- Sears will stay at 5X. Correct. I’m not happy about it, though. Bring back 10X!
- Best Buy will increase from 1X to 3X. Wrong. Best Buy held steady at 1X.
- Shoebuy will increase from 10X to 15X. Wrong. Shoebuy held steady at 10X.
Total score: 3 out of 7 = 43% correct. That’s better than the dismal 30% correct I scored last month, but its still bad. Will I ever get better at this game?