Posted by Chuck on October 9, 2015
Portals

Published on October 9th, 2015 | by Chuck

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Discover Deals Adds Gift Card Exclusion for Sears, Joins Other Portals

Gift Cards at Sears

We’ve written about the fantastic opportunity to make purchases from Sears and double dipping through a shopping portal by purchasing Sears gift cards and then using those to make the purchase. This is especially lucrative when Discover is offering 5% back on Sears due to a category bonus, see 10% Back on Sears Purchases Through Discover Deals, Double-Cash, & How to Maximize.

A while back, the Cartera portals – United, Southwest, AAdvantage, Delta –  updated their terms to exclude gift card purchases from earning portal cashback. Discover also added an exclusion against gift card redemption.

Discover has now added an exclusion against the purchase of gift cards for Sears and Kmart. (HT: Paul)

Discover_Deals

This is terrible news since purchasing Sears gift cards at 30% discount (10% + 10% + 5% + 5%) was really an awesome deal.

List of Major Portals

  • Discover Deals Excludes both purchase and redemption of gift cards
  • Topcashback Explicitly includes the purchase of gift cards but excludes the redemption
  • Befrugal Excludes the purchase of gift cards but does not exclude the redemption
  • Ebates Doesn’t exclude either purchase or redemption of gift cards
  • Shopathome Excludes gift card redemptions. Gift card purchases should be okay and worked for me
  • Upromise Excludes gift card redemptions. Gift card purchases should be fine
  • Southwest, United, Delta, AAdvantage (All Cartera Portals) Exclude the purchase of gift cards and purchases made using SYW points, but does not exclude the redemption of gift cards

Is it actually enforced?

The big question remains if these terms are actually enforced. When the Cartera portals added the gift card exclusion, FrequentMiler did some testing and concluded that the tracking is all coming through fine (with the exception of one purchase made with SYW points at Kmart).

Since the Cartera portals are working for gift card purchases despite the terms, and since other portals still clearly allow gift card purchases, it appears more likely that Discover just doesn’t like these gift cards purchases and wants to stop them but nothing actually changed in the internals of the system. Of course, we’ll have to wait for confirmations to come in on this to know for sure. I recommend checking out FrequentMiler’s Laboratory for updated results.

The biggest impact this will have, in any case, is that it will make purchasing Sears gift cards more risky; in the event something goes wrong with the portal tracking, you won’t be able to file a claim with Discover.

Update: One data point in the comments on FrequentMiler is indicating that the gift card purchase exclusion is being enforced while the gift card redemption exclusion is not being enforced. We’ll have to wait to hear more data points on this.



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Nicholas
Nicholas

Whatever. Half dozen Sears portal transactions and not one of them ever tracked for me.

Ethan
Ethan

Thanks for the heads up on that. I was just about to make some purchases at Sears this morning!

Shirley
Shirley

Discover cash reward is crazy. Discover seems like aware of a lot of manufacture gift card cash back is on the way. So they add limitation again and again. Since so far no tracking. I still feel something not good for these.At the time to redeem double cash back, they may not satisfy everyone.

Evan
Evan

That’s bad. I had checked just a couple of days ago and was glad to see that 10% was back and that at the time they had added an exclusion for gc redemption only. I wouldn’t be optimistic about buying and hoping to still get the cb as in the couple of cases a reloaded gift cards this summer, the transaction didn’t track and I had to ask for the cb to be added manually (expecting it in this coming statement).

AEG
AEG

To add a counterpoint to that update. I had the exact opposite happen on 1 order. GC purchase tracked, but not GC redemption. I’ve also had several orders this month that have tracked both just fine

Evan
Evan

But when was that? The explicit exclusion of gift cards purchases must have happened yesterday.

Phill the Points All Around
Phill the Points All Around

The update must have occurred this morning because I didn’t see those in the T&C last night. Still stated excluding gift card redemption only.

AEG
AEG

It was before the 9th… Although I did make some purchases today, will find out tomorrow if they tracked or not.

AEG
AEG

Purchases tracked correctly for 10/9.

Eric
Eric

Chuck,

I don’t think you meant to include “includes” for both for TCB (see below). Is the purchase or redemption excluded?

“Topcashback Explicitly includes the purchase of gift cards but includes the redemption”

Kris
Kris

Reloaded my gift card on 10/12 and no cashback email by far. I guess it’s officially dead.

gary
gary

Does anyone know if i go through the discover deals portal and use a gift card instead of my discover card. Would i still get the % cashback Portal bonus on the purchase even though i paid with a gift card or other credit card?

yogi
yogi

Similarly, if I use SYWR points for purchase on sears (using discover portal) for my full order, still I get the cashback? I was getting this cashback till few days back even I was using SYWR points for whole order. But now from few days I am not getting any cashback for purchase made by points. Can anyone please confirm on this?

yogi
yogi

Any other website portal which gives cashback for sears/kmart purchase (made by SYWR points) and then that cashback can be transferred to bank account as real cash? Please suggest. Thanks in advance.

econjon
econjon

Any updates on this?s As er FML Looks like someone reloaded Sears GC 10/12 and just found out it worked.

jam
jam

Two separate accounts, my wife and I have not got my customary email of cashback for purchases at through discover portal using sears. Used no gift cards.

jam
jam

Its been over a week now. Called discover and they basically said wait six to eight weeks. The language in the terms is so vague. “Offer is not valid in combination with any other offers.”. With sear everything is always on “sale” . Anyways, I am definitely recommending not using sears via discover deals. I have always gotten the emails previously in two or three days, from purchase.

chris
chris

i was just on chat with discover and they told me that since i used shop your way points for my purchase, it negated the 10% cashback through the portal which is really disappointing.

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