Staples Rebate Visa Liquidation
Staples has an amazing rebate program called Easy Rebates. What makes it so great is that they don’t require you to actually mail in anything. Rebate incentives are run often and for a wide variety of products. For example we often see rebates on Visa gift cards and we also recently saw a rebate on McAfee Antivirus software. While some rebates are paid out in the form of a Staples store gift card, most are paid out as a prepaid Visa gift card like the one shown above.
One of the most frustrating things about these cards has been that they were somewhat difficult to liquidate. Sure you could use them for normal spend, but who wants to do that? I covered a somewhat nice way I was liquidating them several months back. Basically I was using them to purchase eBay gift cards at my local Kroger during 4X fuel point promotions, but it wasn’t as good as getting straight cash.
A Better Way
Yesterday Doctor of Credit wrote a post about liquidating Staples Visa rebate cards and in the comments a few readers mentioned that the cards have recently switched over to Blackhawk Network (think Metabank) and are now pin-enabled. When I saw those comments yesterday I held off on posting, because I had just received a card in the mail and wanted to run a test.
This afternoon I headed over to my local Walmart and walked up to the Money Center. I asked to load $150 to my Serve alternative. ($150 was the amount of money on the rebate card.) The cashier then entered the amount, asked me to swipe my Serve alternative and then my rebate card. After I swiped the rebate card it asked for my PIN and I entered the last four digits of the card number. Seconds later it said “Approved”! The process was exactly the same as loading a normal Metabank Visa gift card.
A Few Things You Should Know
If you call the number on the back of the card there is no way to change the PIN number with the automated system and in fact the system will tell you to have the merchant run the transaction as credit. My guess is this is a holdover from the old days when these cards were not pin-enabled. I did not try to speak to a representative to see if the PIN can be changed, since the last four works great for me!
If you have the ability to liquidate pin-enabled Visa gift cards to Bluebird/Serve or another prepaid card, then Staples rebate Visa gift cards are basically as good as cash. The PIN number is now the last four digits of the card number and they load like any Metabank Visa. Once the money is on your prepaid card you can withdraw it from an ATM or use it to pay bills!
Now, if Staples would only offer a lot more “free after rebate” sales! 🙂 Happy swiping!