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

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

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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/
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Old Jan 2, 17, 7:32 pm
  #1  
Moderator, Manufactured Spending
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: TIJ/SAN
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New to Manufactured Spending? Start here(2017-2018)

This thread continues the discussion from 2016. The previous thread is here: http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/manuf...re-2016-a.html
ChrisFlyer66 is offline  
Old Jan 2, 17, 7:41 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 8
Are there any known self-service kiosks for 1VIP? My local WM doesn't have kate unfortunately. Been using FD for metabank (soon to do OV) on a very small scale.
aaTman is offline  
Old Jan 2, 17, 8:14 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 5
help with few points

I stopped MS after serve shutdown in Jan 2016. I am out of touch and would like to start slow. I'll really appreciate if some one can share few input

1. I have redcard(would like to keep it for target 5% purchase). Spouse serve was shutdown in Jan 2016. That serve account is still having money on it.
a. Can I get redcard+serve or BB ?
b. How to withdraw money from serve and how fast I can open other serve or BB ?
c. Does FD and/or walmart fine to load OV ?

Thanks
ran123in is offline  
Old Jan 2, 17, 10:33 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 2
I have had lots of luck lately with buying OV cards and then turning them into MO's at the PO, I then take the MO to a local branch of the bank I have the CC through and paying my CC. I then pay the difference each month with my checking.

English, for non-glossary people;:

I have had lots of luck lately with buying ONe Vanilla cards and then turning them into Money Orders at the Post Office. I then take the Money Order to a local branch of the bank I have the Credit Card through and paying my Credit Card. I then pay the difference each month with my checking.
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Dysorder is offline  
Old Jan 3, 17, 11:43 am
  #5  
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 3
Beginner

Hi everyone,

I am new to MS but I went to a Simon Mall and bought a 5% VGC for $500 whats my best option for liquidating it? I live in NYC so it's difficult to get to a WM but I can do it if need be. Does PO take them? Trying to get to my min spend for amex plat and for Chase Business Ink. Would love help. Thanks so much!
alliemaire1230 is offline  
Old Jan 3, 17, 1:59 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 3,699
Originally Posted by alliemaire1230 View Post
Hi everyone,

I am new to MS but I went to a Simon Mall and bought a 5% VGC for $500 whats my best option for liquidating it? I live in NYC so it's difficult to get to a WM but I can do it if need be. Does PO take them? Trying to get to my min spend for amex plat and for Chase Business Ink. Would love help. Thanks so much!
if you mean the 5B GC and you're eyeing the PO to drain it, it'll not go through because it's issued by Metabank. It'll be accepted at WM but if you want to squeeze $25 cashback out of it, go to CVS and buy (1) $495 OneVanilla GC. The 4.95 will pay for the fee so your total will be $499.95. Swipe your 5BGC for the full amount and press debit. When PIN screen comes up, enter the last 4 numbers of the card. Make sure to check the back of the package to see if it's issued by BANCORP if you intend to drain it at PO. If it's issued by Metabank, it won't go through at PO but it'll be accepted at WM. At grocery stores that accept debit card, GCs issued by Metabank or Bancorp usually go through.

PS: since you mentioned amex plat, did you register from a leaked link, the one from around Thanksgiving? if yes, it is best to AVOID BUYING ANY GCs from anywhere because this particular card is under close scrutiny and chances of your MR getting clawed back if they suspect you bought any GC is very high. It is best to meet min spend on the ax plat by ORGANIC spending ~ meaning paying rent, utility bills, buying groceries, etc and other NON-MS related purchases. For more details, check this thread.
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Mamibear is offline  
Old Jan 3, 17, 4:09 pm
  #7  
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 3
Originally Posted by Mamibear View Post
if you mean the 5B GC and you're eyeing the PO to drain it, it'll not go through because it's issued by Metabank. It'll be accepted at WM but if you want to squeeze $25 cashback out of it, go to CVS and buy (1) $495 OneVanilla GC. The 4.95 will pay for the fee so your total will be $499.95. Swipe your 5BGC for the full amount and press debit. When PIN screen comes up, enter the last 4 numbers of the card. Make sure to check the back of the package to see if it's issued by BANCORP if you intend to drain it at PO. If it's issued by Metabank, it won't go through at PO but it'll be accepted at WM. At grocery stores that accept debit card, GCs issued by Metabank or Bancorp usually go through.

PS: since you mentioned amex plat, did you register from a leaked link, the one from around Thanksgiving? if yes, it is best to AVOID BUYING ANY GCs from anywhere because this particular card is under close scrutiny and chances of your MR getting clawed back if they suspect you bought any GC is very high. It is best to meet min spend on the ax plat by ORGANIC spending ~ meaning paying rent, utility bills, buying groceries, etc and other NON-MS related purchases. For more details, check this thread.
Thank you so much! That was really helpful. My plat is just the 40k sign up bonus, I got it a few weeks ago. I needed it more so for the Marriott gold status because work was sending me to a Marriott for almost two weeks and also the delta lounge access which I will get a lot of use out of at Laguardia and JFK.

But thanks for letting me know that I need be careful with the Amex Plat card. I've bought just one $500 5BGC with it. Unfortunately I can't pay rent with the card through plastiq because my landlord only accepts cash. I know it's kind of seedy but I have a very very good deal on my apartment because of it. So I'm wondering if I could use PayPal at all to "purchase" something from a friend or family and then get to the amount that way. is that possible to do for MS with the amex plat? I don't see much about PayPal but I'm curious about using that to meet the minimum spend.
alliemaire1230 is offline  
Old Jan 3, 17, 4:16 pm
  #8  
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 349
Well i choose credit when swiping 5back card at cvs

so i can not get 5%?

also why is onevanilla $495? Is there a promotion at cvs?
misterno is offline  
Old Jan 4, 17, 9:54 am
  #9  
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 115
Generic question to all the MSers - How do you guys consolidate all MO deposits and pay CCs via bill pay? I've few accounts that I use for MO deposits but PITA to schedule bill pay from different accounts to a single/multiple credit cards for different amounts and manage the balance.

I can use pull from CC website instead of push from checking account but bill pay from checking account less risky in my opinion comparatively.

I've heard of using generic checking account (like Simple) to do bill pays but consolidating all the amounts (via MO deposits) to a single account is also time consuming.
trueblue84 is offline  
Old Jan 4, 17, 7:21 pm
  #10  
 
Join Date: May 2015
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Pulling from a real checking account from CC website is not risky.
mhdena is offline  
Old Jan 4, 17, 9:37 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 16
Hey guys Im new to MS and I have some super noob questions. I've been reading through forums on FT for about a week and just picked up the lingo. I have the chase business ink preffered and I want to eat through the 5k minimum spend using VVGC to get MOs at the PO. I've looked through forum after forum and post after post and I have no idea where you guys are getting VVGC with your CC. I've been rejected over and over and chase even put security holds on my account twice (apparently due to unusual activity soon after changing my billing adress when I moved) and Im still no closer to getting them. The only MS I can think of is to invoice myself from my business and pay with my CC but that's a 2.95% fee. Can anyone help?
Kcacademy is offline  
Old Jan 5, 17, 7:11 am
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 3,699
Originally Posted by ran123in View Post
1. I have redcard(would like to keep it for target 5% purchase). Spouse serve was shutdown in Jan 2016. That serve account is still having money on it.
a. Can I get redcard+serve or BB ?
b. How to withdraw money from serve and how fast I can open other serve or BB ?
c. Does FD and/or walmart fine to load OV ?
a. yes, as long as you've not been shutdown
b. you can do b/p, w/d via ATM, transfer funds to your bank account. opening S/BB is quick and easy; when you get approved, you get your card in 5 to 7 business days. IMPORTANT NOTE, ALL AMEX PREPAIDS ARE VERY FRAGILE for MS use. There is a current wave of shutdowns going on reported by MSers, be prepared for it since there is NO WAY to avoid it when you're MSing with any of them. Shutdown can occur at any time.
c.yes
Mamibear is offline  
Old Jan 5, 17, 11:16 am
  #13  
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 3
Buy then return

I want to meet the minimum spend requirement and I thought of a way to do it. I signed up for the chase business ink preferred for the 80k sign up. Could I buy like $5k worth of stuff at Nordstrom and then return a year later. What would happen to the sign up bonus points I earned? Would they take the whole thing away or just 5k worth of points? Nordstrom has a very very good return policy (Bloomingdales too). If you don't touch anything they will return at any time to the tender you purchased with.

Last edited by alliemaire1230; Jan 5, 17 at 11:16 am Reason: Misspelled
alliemaire1230 is offline  
Old Jan 5, 17, 9:01 pm
  #14  
 
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Originally Posted by alliemaire1230 View Post
I want to meet the minimum spend requirement and I thought of a way to do it. I signed up for the chase business ink preferred for the 80k sign up. Could I buy like $5k worth of stuff at Nordstrom and then return a year later. What would happen to the sign up bonus points I earned? Would they take the whole thing away or just 5k worth of points? Nordstrom has a very very good return policy (Bloomingdales too). If you don't touch anything they will return at any time to the tender you purchased with.
Transfer or spend the points before you plan on returning the items, and then plan on never opening another Chase account again, especially if you only plan to get that card for the signup bonus and never use it for regular spending. You don't think Chase won't look at your spending habits when you call to cancel and then realize you returned the stuff and already used the points. Good luck with that plan.
CJS415 is offline  
Old Jan 6, 17, 7:39 am
  #15  
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 3,699
I concur with CJS415. There are no guarantees on what the card issuer will do as part of AA.

It is one thing to return for refund/exchange IF there is something wrong with the product AND there was no prior intent to buy n return later. It wouldn't probably stand out like a sore thumb if its for a small item for a few dollars or a hundred or so, but if it's in the thousands, I'm sure it'll be scrutinized. Back in June 2014, Chase has sent out notices regarding "abuse" of their rewards and subsequent AAs they will implement.

There are many ways to meet minimum spend requirements w/o risking AA from the CC issuer. Buying with intent to return is one of those I will stay away from; it'll bite you in the rear later on.
Mamibear is offline  

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