A Reminder to Get Your Cashback or Miles for Online Purchases (Including Travel Purchases)

I’ve written about this before — last month even — but it bears repeating. I had a conversation yesterday with someone who reads this blog regularly, who has seen me write about earning cash back or miles from online shopping including for booking travel online, basically free money or miles in your pocket for the purchases you’re going to make anyway. He knew about these posts and yet still wasn’t doing it.

See for instance The Broad Array of Travel Sites Offering Cashback via Ebates and Purchasing Airline Tickets for Others, Getting Something Back for Yourself.

Three things here:

  • First if you use my referral link for E-bates we both get $5 with your first qualifying purchase, I won’t turn that down.
  • Second, you should always consult EvReward before making any online purchase, it will show you the range of mileage and cash back offers available for any given nmerchant. That way you can make the decision about what’s most lucrative to you, e.g. 3 American miles per dollar vs 2% cash back vs 4 Delta miles per dollar.
  • Third, there is at least one special case where you won’t want to do this — it’s fine to go through a mileage or cash back link to book your hotels directly with a hotel chain, but depending on the chain (eg Starwood) if you care about elite status benefits you want to go through a cash back link to the Starwood website and not to a booking agent like Expedia or Orbitz in order to be eligible for your status benefits during your hotel stay. But car rentals, airlines, etc or for that matter drugstore.com or FTD, go for it!

    I’ll also say that I’m a personal fan of the Continental Onepass mall for online shopping for many merchants only because I also have a Continental credit card and that earns me double miles through that mall. Still not always the best, but it often tips the scales.

  • About Gary Leff

    Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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    1. FYI – I regularly get cash back on Ebates from delta even when I forget to visit Ebates beforehand.

    2. Sometimes the miles never post with some programs. I have had this happen. It takes a number of e mails and proof of purchase to get the miles. Frustrating and sometimes not worth it for the small amounts. Now, I keep a list and follow up if the points are enough to warrant my time.

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