Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Miles&Points > Credit, Debit and Prepaid Card Programs > Manufactured Spending
Reload this Page >

New to Manufactured Spending? Start here(2017-2018)

New to Manufactured Spending? Start here(2017-2018)

    Hide Wikipost
Old Dec 19, 18, 11:51 pm   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
Last edit by: Marathon Man
Wiki Link
NEW TO MS: Do some serious reading for a month of all the posts and wiki to get an understanding of MS before asking common questions.

Note: the 2016 version of this thread is here: http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/manuf...l#post27694986, the 2015 version of the thread is here: http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/manuf...re-2015-a.html

Welcome to Manufactured Spending. Marathon Man did not write this message, but he has edited it and anyone can. If you are new here, please spend some time reading before posting. Most likely your questions have already been answered multiple times. Consider deals that you share. These threads are searchable by Google. A volatile deal may be worth holding close to the vest.

Hints

1) On FT, topics are heavily consolidated. Sometimes the title of the thread and first few posts may not properly reflect the broad range of discussion inside the thread. Be sure to visit any thread relating to the product or service you want to learn more about because you might be surprised by how in depth the discussion really is. High "View Count" and "Replies" are good indicators of active "master threads" on a specific topic.

2) Use Google to search FT. It works a lot better than the built-in search.

3) A glossary wiki for MS located in the thread Glossary, Manufactured Spending Forum

Important Rules

1) MSing is very YMMV. It varies by store, manager, and right down to the cashier working at the moment. Some might argue that MS is like card counting in a casino. It is not illegal but casinos don’t like it. Orhers have said it’s like having a fake ID in college to use just to get into bars where all the fun is. Just because it worked here yesterday doesn’t mean it will get you in today. MS is like being a wood worker constantly using a table saw. Always watch what you are doing—always! Or you will lose something. That being said, always be nice and courteous in the face of rejection. The biggest secret for success is to lay low so you can try again.

2) DO NOT spend more than you can afford. START WITH SMALL AMOUNTS TO TEST THE WATER! As an example.. don't start with a $5000 purchase of VGCs if you can't afford to float that much! Instead, buy one and try it, and scale up once you are comfortable with a new method. It's easy to lose track, or get robbed, when you are handling so much money. Getting a refund is NOT always possible.

3) DO NOT ask employees, cashiers, customer service representatives, etc... about how to MS, or about things you read on this forum. The information you read here are very specific, unknown, legal uses of products or services. Most employees, cashiers, and even managers do not know about them. At best you'll get bad information. At worst you'll create a lot of unnecessary misunderstanding.

4) It bears repeating that there are no guarantees. you could easily buy $10,000 in gift cards or some other instrument, only to discover that your method for liquidating them vanishes the very next day. MS is not "normal" financial activity ("normal" being defined by the banks), and thus is often perceived as "suspicious" even if it is legal.

5) never underestimate the risk of criminal activity. gift cards can easily be stolen, loaded onto a compromised account, loaded in a debit card skimmer, or even fraudulent (e.g., an already used card put back on the rack).

6) MSing can be used for a variety of purposes, ranging from smallish amounts to meet minimum spend requirements to get a credit card signup bonus, to accumulating huge numbers of points for travel/cashback/etc. Remember too that you will often have expenses such as purchase fees, liquidation fees, and gas.

If you have a question that does not seem to fit anywhere, or you have not found an appropriate place for it, post it here.

- A helpful note from seat17D about some of the inherent risks of MS

New MSers can also read all these threads:
http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/manuf...-spending-719/
Print Wikipost

Closed Thread

Old Mar 4, 18, 4:24 pm
  #421  
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Posts: 59
Is there a Canadian version of manufactured spending?
jungly is offline  
Old Mar 4, 18, 4:27 pm
  #422  
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Posts: 59
Anyone point me to the right direction if MS is possible to do with:

1. etrade, ameritrade by using you credit card to fund. If so will it consider it a "purchase" instead of a "cash advance"?

2. Can you purchase foreign currency at your local currency exchange depot or bank. If so will it recognize it as "purchase".

im assuming "cash advance" are not counted towards the bonus requirements and draws red flags?
jungly is offline  
Old Mar 8, 18, 8:56 am
  #423  
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Posts: 3
Newbie to WM MO MS

Hey Guys,

I am fairly new to the WM MO method for MS. I do not want to start big, or wreck it for others in my area possibly, so I need some guidance. I am just wondering, are people mainly doing this to meet CC bonus criteria, or are they doing it to acquire points for travel little by little? I do not see how to turn a profit with CC points if the MO costs 70 cents and the card costs roughly 6 dollars to purchase and load. I am sure there are many details I need filling in on. Where are the cards purchased, a place like GCM? Any advice helps. Only form of MS I have ever done is with bank accounts, because it seemed like more of a sure thing to me. Thanks.
Jaffarr1990 is offline  
Old Mar 8, 18, 11:22 am
  #424  
Moderator, Manufactured Spending
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: TIJ/SAN
Programs: All of them.
Posts: 1,324
Originally Posted by Jaffarr1990 View Post
Hey Guys,

I am fairly new to the WM MO method for MS. I do not want to start big, or wreck it for others in my area possibly, so I need some guidance. I am just wondering, are people mainly doing this to meet CC bonus criteria, or are they doing it to acquire points for travel little by little? I do not see how to turn a profit with CC points if the MO costs 70 cents and the card costs roughly 6 dollars to purchase and load. I am sure there are many details I need filling in on. Where are the cards purchased, a place like GCM? Any advice helps. Only form of MS I have ever done is with bank accounts, because it seemed like more of a sure thing to me. Thanks.
I think there is a mix of people doing it to meet CC bonus criteria and going it to acquire points for travel little by little. CC companies (particularly Amex) are starting to crack down on the former. There are definitely places to get get gift cards for less than $6(i.e. simon mall). People paying $6 for $500 gift cards are most likely buying at a merchant in a bonus category, or getting cash back and/or a rebate on the purchase.
ChrisFlyer66 is offline  
Old Mar 8, 18, 4:30 pm
  #425  
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Posts: 326
Originally Posted by Jaffarr1990 View Post
I do not see how to turn a profit with CC points if the MO costs 70 cents and the card costs roughly 6 dollars to purchase and load..
Right now, you can activate your Discover card to give you a 5% cashback on gas station purchases till the end of March. Some gas stations sell gift cards. So a $500 gc will give you $25 cashback, minus $6.70, for about an $18 profit/card. Discover limits you to $1500, so you can only do this 3 times. Next quarter it'll be a different category (grocery stores, I think) There are other cards with similar cashback but higher limits.

And I forgot to mention that a new Discover It card will double the cashback in the first year, but the fees won't double, so $43/card.

Last edited by ChrisFlyer66; Mar 9, 18 at 8:19 pm Reason: consecutive similar posts
Klemhuzzah is offline  
Old Mar 25, 18, 11:24 am
  #426  
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 22
I am also a newbie... signed up to a recent travel CC 60k miles promo which requires minimum spend. Have bank accounts with two different larger banks, with accounts at a tier where they do not charge for MO, one bank is from which I got the new travel CC. Can the travel CC be utilized to purchase the GC (Vanilla, WM Dot Green, or Simon online portal) and use the GC at the banks to purchase the MO w/o fees, to pay different CC bills (including the new travel CC), pay utility bills, and send $ to individual? Or does one need to buy the MO at Walmart to avoid being blocked out of the CC?
2008traveler is offline  
Old Mar 25, 18, 12:36 pm
  #427  
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 1,817
Originally Posted by 2008traveler View Post
I am also a newbie... signed up to a recent travel CC 60k miles promo which requires minimum spend. Have bank accounts with two different larger banks, with accounts at a tier where they do not charge for MO, one bank is from which I got the new travel CC. Can the travel CC be utilized to purchase the GC (Vanilla, WM Dot Green, or Simon online portal) and use the GC at the banks to purchase the MO w/o fees, to pay different CC bills (including the new travel CC), pay utility bills, and send $ to individual? Or does one need to buy the MO at Walmart to avoid being blocked out of the CC?
you dont even mention bank, how can we help you?

I doubt that they will accept debit or VGC. Most likely funds for MO will come from your account.

Why don't you ask your bank?
lumangoy is offline  
Old Mar 25, 18, 1:33 pm
  #428  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 416
Originally Posted by 2008traveler View Post
I am also a newbie... signed up to a recent travel CC 60k miles promo which requires minimum spend. Have bank accounts with two different larger banks, with accounts at a tier where they do not charge for MO, one bank is from which I got the new travel CC. Can the travel CC be utilized to purchase the GC (Vanilla, WM Dot Green, or Simon online portal) and use the GC at the banks to purchase the MO w/o fees, to pay different CC bills (including the new travel CC), pay utility bills, and send $ to individual? Or does one need to buy the MO at Walmart to avoid being blocked out of the CC?
Read the Wiki at the top of this thread and use the links to find more information.
Travelz is offline  
Old Mar 25, 18, 7:16 pm
  #429  
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 22
Red face Newbie question

Newbie:... I have a Simon Mall within less than 10min away. I logged onto their website, and there are different GC (Visa or Amex) w/ different designs. Do either work to purchase for WM MO? Read some WM are rejecting cards which has Gift Card written on it, are there any designs of the Simon Mall GC designs which are preferred (ie. Gift Card looks more like a debit card?)
Also which portal gives 2% CB, I checked some of the common ones.. and did not see Simon Mall... Thank you for your assistance.

Last edited by ChrisFlyer66; Mar 25, 18 at 9:19 pm
2008traveler is offline  
Old Mar 25, 18, 8:05 pm
  #430  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: home = LAX
Posts: 23,643
Originally Posted by 2008traveler View Post
Newbie:... I have a Simon Mall within less than 10min away. I logged onto their website, and there are different GC (Visa or Amex) w/ different designs. Do either work to purchase for WM MO? Read some WM are rejecting cards which has Gift Card written on it, are there any designs of the Simon Mall GC designs which are preferred (ie. Gift Card looks more like a debit card?)
Also which portal gives 2% CB, I checked some of the common ones.. and did not see Simon Mall... Thank you for your assistance.
With SImon's Mall, before you worry about how to turn them into MOs, worry about whether the way you purchase them will hurt you.

Amex-the-bank has for a long time been denying signup bonuses to people who used Simon's Mall to fulfill some or all of the minimum spend for the signup bonus. It seems to have been the first place they cracked down on. So at the very least, cards from Amex-the-bank are not recommended for use at Simon's Mall if your goal is to earn points on the purchase.

(Sorry, I don't know the answer to your main question, but since you mentioned you're a newbie, I wanted to make sure you knew not to buy at Simon's Mall with a card issue by Amex.)
2008traveler likes this.
sdsearch is offline  
Old Mar 25, 18, 9:21 pm
  #431  
Moderator, Manufactured Spending
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: TIJ/SAN
Programs: All of them.
Posts: 1,324
Originally Posted by 2008traveler View Post
Newbie:... I have a Simon Mall within less than 10min away. I logged onto their website, and there are different GC (Visa or Amex) w/ different designs. Do either work to purchase for WM MO? Read some WM are rejecting cards which has Gift Card written on it, are there any designs of the Simon Mall GC designs which are preferred (ie. Gift Card looks more like a debit card?).
The Amex will definitely NOT work at WM. The visa might work, but YMMV. Many Walmarts will not let you use a gift card to buy MO.
2008traveler likes this.
ChrisFlyer66 is offline  
Old Mar 25, 18, 10:01 pm
  #432  
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 22
Thank you w/ regards not to purchase Amex at Simon Mall. Investigating options to do min spend for the Chase Sapphire...Some of the minimum spend is organic, some of it was thinking of MS.
With regards to Discover IT 5% cashback bonus, are there gas stations which are viable to purchase the Visa GC. I looked into couple and they would not accept Credit Card for payment.. In Phoenix .
2008traveler is offline  
Old Mar 25, 18, 11:53 pm
  #433  
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Posts: 326
Originally Posted by 2008traveler View Post
With regards to Discover IT 5% cashback bonus, are there gas stations which are viable to purchase the Visa GC. I looked into couple and they would not accept Credit Card for payment.. In Phoenix .
Last month, I used my Discover to buy 5x$200 at Speedway. In Ohio. I seem to have mis-remembered them having $500, since my notes I took when I started a few months ago clearly state they only have $200 max. Time to check a few more gas stations. Hope you have good luck finding one in your area.
2008traveler likes this.
Klemhuzzah is offline  
Old Mar 27, 18, 12:26 pm
  #434  
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Posts: 326
Turns out there's a thread that talks about gas stations that sell $500 gift cards and take credit cards as payment.

Gas Stations that offer $500 VGCs?

The Wiki for that thread only mentions 3 gas stations, but at least one of them is in Phoenix. Though as usual, YMMV.

Edit: for some reason, the link isn't colored blue for me. But the 2nd line is a link to the thread.
Klemhuzzah is offline  
Old Mar 27, 18, 3:08 pm
  #435  
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Posts: 326
When going for quarterly bonuses, is the date used the date purchased, or the date the transactions posts? Eg, if I buy something on 3/31 but it doesn't post to the credit card until 4/2, would I still get the 1st quarter bonus?
Klemhuzzah is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread