Against the advice provided to me from Personal Finance Digest, I signed up for the Citibank issued Best Buy credit card in November 2014. He told me do not get the Best Buy credit card because it sucked. After several months of playing around with it, I have come to the same conclusion that he made and here’s why:
- Earnings changed
- Evolve died a slow painful death
The above screenshot is a condensed version of the timeline of how I was rewarded at Best Buy.
Starting from the bottom and working up, 6/29/2014, Best Buy issued points with the bonus if you’re an Elite member for a gift card purchase. Then about 2 weeks later, Best Buy stopped issuing the 1.25x multiplier. Instead it was a straight 1x. As another test, I made a $25 purchase and got 25 Best Buy points. At the time, I didn’t know it was the sign up bonus, where I was able to get the 7.5% back in rewards so that is where you see the $200 purchase get 700 points. So I ran another test, and low and behold 1x multiplier again. As you can see, Best Buy made a secret devaluation on the earnings when purchasing Best Buy gift cards.
Note: these are Best Buy’s merchant gift card and not the Visa prepaid gift card.
As you all know, Evolve died because they are charging an arm and a leg to use their service so we can’t factor them into the equation anymore.
It’s Dead, Jim!
Even though you can sell Best Buy gift cards at a high rate, with the combination of the two changes that are independent of each other, this caused the Best Buy credit card to be dead to leverage for our purposes. You’d wind up spending a lot of money for Best Buy points. It could have marginally worked if Evolve was still in play as you could buy $500 prepaid cards with a 5% cash back card to reduce the average cost basis.