Dividend Mile Shopping Mall: take serious advantage!!

 
Old Sep 7, 11, 11:25 am
  #1  
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Dividend Mile Shopping Mall: take serious advantage!!

I consider myself to be a pretty savvy online shopper and as well as a savvy compiler of US miles. But I never took the Shopping Mall seriously because I figured that I wouldn't find much there that I need anyway.

How wrong I was. Now, whenever I want to buy something online, I just put the item I want in the Shopping Mall search box and see if any Shopping Mall vendor sells what I want. And to my surprise, most of what I want is there and at the same prices I'd pay anyway. Plus, I earn way more miles than just the ones I get on the US MC. A win-win.

I'm sure some of you already know all of this, but I'm betting that many of you are like me: never really used the Shopping Mall. Check it out!
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Old Sep 7, 11, 12:11 pm
  #2  
 
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Just be sure to screenshot *everything* and keep good records, and take the time to manage your account to ensure you get the mileage due. Not all vendors are reliable with posting mileage credit. US won't give you the miles till the vendor says so, and Freecause (the company managing the US shopping mall) is pretty much useless in the consumer support area. If you're dealing with vendors like drugstore.com and other long-term mileage mall companies, it does run pretty smoothly, but if there's a new merchant or someone who doesn't get a lot of traffic, you might have to fight for your miles. And if it's one of those bonanza-type offers that seems too good to be true, you might *never* get your miles because the merchants will find any loophole possible to get out of paying up.

I am currently involved in a mess with a vendor who won't pay up and from this thread it seems like there's other FT'ers in the same boat. It has not been a fun ride and it's probably not over anytime soon... http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/us-ai...t-honored.html


Finally, buy only what you would already be buying OR what you can afford to gamble. If you walk into what you think is a good deal, only to find the vendor won't honor their offer, you may find yourself with no miles and just a credit card bill. Of course some vendors are better than others and if you stick with the reputable ones you have lower risk but I still wouldn't go out and buy things from the shopping mall just for the miles unless I could afford to lose the money.
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Old Sep 7, 11, 12:15 pm
  #3  
 
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For all of the Airline & Hotel "Shopping Malls", for the same exact store, the mileage payout is different. If you have accounts with several different frequent traveler programs, it's worth it to check just how many points/miles you'll get through each program to determine where you should buy it.
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Old Sep 7, 11, 1:01 pm
  #4  
 
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folks they are just a bunch of liars. Many deceptive offers and 0 payout. Stay away from them.
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Old Sep 7, 11, 1:04 pm
  #5  
 
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Good luck with the malls! Their customer service is horrible and claims to have no liability when things go wrong. Everything is the customer's fault. They try to screw you over even if you keep perfect records.

The AA/Verizon Deal, US/HA/EasyCGI deal, and UA/Months of Miles deal are all perfect examples of how these companies don't even follow their own terms and conditions. It is nothing but a huge scam.
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Old Sep 7, 11, 1:50 pm
  #6  
 
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Originally Posted by tommyleo View Post
But I never took the Shopping Mall seriously because I figured that I wouldn't find much there that I need anyway.
I shop a lot at Amazon.com, and you can now go to Amazon via the shopping mall and earn miles for shopping at Amazon.com.

I can't tell you how thrilling it is to earn miles by shopping on Amazon.
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Old Sep 7, 11, 2:21 pm
  #7  
 
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Originally Posted by BryanIAH View Post
The AA/Verizon Deal, US/HA/EasyCGI deal, and UA/Months of Miles deal are all perfect examples of how these companies don't even follow their own terms and conditions. It is nothing but a huge scam.
I didn't try for the AA/Verizon deal but am hearing about how UA changed their MoM rules after the promo had started and between that and the Easy CGI fiasco, I'm pretty gun-shy. Like I said, don't put any money into these portals unless #1 you are going to buy the item anyway and the miles are just icing or #2 it's money you can afford to lose.
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Old Sep 7, 11, 2:58 pm
  #8  
 
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Originally Posted by dcpatti View Post
Like I said, don't put any money into these portals unless #1 you are going to buy the item anyway and the miles are just icing or #2 it's money you can afford to lose.
I agree you shouldn't make any purchases through the Mileage/Point Malls that you wouldn't make otherwise. However, I think it's a poor decision to order from a website that is contained in these "malls" without clicking the link. You're just throwing away free miles or points otherwise.

A great site to use to determine if that website gives points/miles is http://www.webflyer.com/deals/mileage_mall/index.php
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Old Sep 7, 11, 6:39 pm
  #9  
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Originally Posted by GNRMatt View Post
A great site to use to determine if that website gives points/miles is http://www.webflyer.com/deals/mileage_mall/index.php
Here's another one that I really like. You put in the name of a store and it tells you the points you can earn in the various programs (assuming they participate in any).

http://evreward.com/

BTW, tommyleo, there are a number of miles-earning malls that are more lucrative and easier to deal with than the US/Sky Mall version. I earn substantially more miles to British Airways and Virgin Atlantic, for example.
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Old Sep 7, 11, 8:10 pm
  #10  
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Wow! Awesome advice all around. ^

It seems like the best course of action is to use the DM Shopping Mall for items that you would buy anyway, but don't pay extra just to try to earn miles -- especially since there is no guarantee that you will ever get the miles.
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Old Sep 8, 11, 4:41 am
  #11  
 
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I was trying to get credit from scancafe.com for a purchase that I was making, and they said they weren't part of the program. I then showed them where they were listed on US's webpage. Scancafe then escilated this to a much higher level and came back to me and said that US listed them without permission and that they weren't part of the shopping mall program!!

I haven't really used the shopping mall much, but it does seem a little too good to be true.
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Old Sep 8, 11, 5:50 am
  #12  
 
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I use Deltas mall personally, but I love these things! Earned about 8k miles myself for spending about 1,500 this month in bedroom furniture. Love the promotions ^^
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Old Sep 8, 11, 7:29 am
  #13  
 
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Originally Posted by tacostuff View Post
I was trying to get credit from scancafe.com for a purchase that I was making, and they said they weren't part of the program. I then showed them where they were listed on US's webpage. Scancafe then escilated this to a much higher level and came back to me and said that US listed them without permission and that they weren't part of the shopping mall program!!

I haven't really used the shopping mall much, but it does seem a little too good to be true.
Here's part of the problem. The company called FreeCause actually does the mileage mall management and there's a bunch of ways a company can end up with an offer out there, but in a lot of the cases, there are two agreements: one between US Airways and FreeCause, and another between FreeCause and the actual vendor. Also, some of these vendors aren't truly independent companies but rather "sister subsidiaries" or independent units owned by the same parent company. The subsidiary may never even know of the agreement between the parent and FreeCause. But the subsidiary is who you call/email when you have an account question. They have no clue and often think you're confused or that they have no such posted offer.

So you may get into a situation where Company X has never agreed to paying miles or partnering with US but they did agree to paying Freecause a cut of each referral, out of which Freecause pays the miles; or you may get into a situaiton where Company X has no agreement at all with FreeCause but Parent Company Y does, and just signed up all of its owned subsidiaries. The relationships are complex, they aren't transparent, and they can take a lot of wrestling to get to the right person/department to help you; but by that time, the marketer is on the hook for a sky-high number of miles, and they stop answering the phone.

Throw in some ambiguous terms and conditions and it's a recipe for disaster. Case in point: Booking Buddy. Now, in all fairness, this was resovled in a satisfactory way, in my point of view, with most customers getting most of their miles, but I don't know which company paid for the miles, so I don't know who to credit with that. At any rate, Booking Buddy, a small travel booking site, gets a cut from each reservation made through them, and in order to drive more traffic to their site, signed up with FreeCause to promote them. The offer was 18 miles per dollar. The *intent* was 18 miles per dollar *of the commission that Booking Buddy earns,* not of the full purchase price. But that last detail was lost in the many layers involved, and when mileage for a $500 purchase started hitting people's accounts at 21 miles rather than the expected 9000 miles, all hell broke loose. In the end, I got about 95,000 miles from that deal (and I honored every one of my reservations) and I'm grateful for it but as we can see, Booking Buddy is no longer a shopping partner, and it did take a lot of work to get those miles. That's also the last example I have of the problem being resolved in the customer's favor as, since then, most overly generous offers have ended up with people's orders being randomly cancelled, to get the vendor out of their liability to pay miles, or in product being delivered but miles ultimately never being credited.

Like gnrmatt says, if it's money you will spend anyway, it's silly to just use a credit card direct with a merchant when you can get some miles by using a different link, and in that way, it's really fantastic. I've racked up a lot of miles this way over the years.

But given the complexity of some of these relationships, I'd look at anything over and above money I will spend anyway just like I look at the craps table: there's a chance I'll win, and I'll probably have some entertainment in the process, but there's a chance I'll end up losing too, and if I can't afford to lose that money or devote the time required to babysit the offer till the miles post, I just walk away.
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Old Sep 8, 11, 9:03 am
  #14  
 
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I hate the malls after the AA/Verizon fiasco. Trying to lure people in then follows the biggest runaround known to mankind.
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Old Sep 8, 11, 9:21 am
  #15  
 
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I've had few problems, but I haven't jumped on the mistake deals (ie, 83K AA miles for $60). Those are the ones the merchants are obviously going to fight. The more routine deals usually do post okay.

So yes, only buy stuff you would buy anyway and don't pay extra. And if you get miles too, great!
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