5X Bonus on Gas, Drug Stores, and Amusement Parks from US Airways MasterCard (Targeted)

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Over the last few days I have seen reports on Flyertalk and Milepoint that some US Airways MasterCard customers were getting targeted for a Summer Promotion for 5x miles on their spending at gas stations, drug stores, and amusement parks – up to a 2,500 bonus miles.  I figured that since I had just recently finished my targeted promo of 15,000 bonus miles after spending $1,250 per month for three months that I had been left out on this promo.  However, a nice little email popped up in my inbox today that indicated I had indeed been on the coveted “targeted” list for this promo as well!  My only use of this card has been for the initial purchase to get the 40,000 mile sign-up bonus and then when I was targeted for the 15,000 mile promo (that posted without intervention and on-time).

We don’t have an amusement park visit on the horizon, and I don’t really visit drug stores with much regularity (though I could make a stop in order to purchase gift cards to other stores), but we do buy gas.  Lots of gas.  My husband does many hundred miles per week for work, so gas is a necessary evil in my house. Since this promo awards a maximum of 2,500 miles, I’m assuming that means that the first $500 of purchases in these categories will earn 5x miles.  It takes my family about a month to rack up $500 in gas expenses, so we should be able to max out this promo by the end of July or early August.  Of course, the third quarter Chase Freedom Visa bonus 5x categories are gas stations and restaurants.  So, what we will do is start off with restaurant charges going to the Freedom card (instead of the Sapphire Preferred card where they normally go to earn 2x) and gas station purchases will go on the US Airways card until we hit $500 on that card.  Once we hit $500 on the US Airways card in gas station purchases, we will then shift those purchase to the Chase Freedom card until we hit $1500 for the quarter in combined restaurant in gas expenses.  Then, restaurant expenses will go back to the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card for 2x and gas purchases will go back to the Ink Bold for 2x.

I know this sounds a little bit complicated, and if you are new to miles and points, don’t feel like you have to use so many different cards for various purchases.  However, once you have been in the miles and points world for a while it makes sense to get as many points as possible for each purchase.  I hate just getting 1x for a purchase, in fact as I explained in this post, I almost never earn just 1x for a purchase since I take advantage of online shopping portals and credit card bonus categories.  I’d say my average is closer to 3x for purchases.  I do hope to actually tally that up at the end of 2012 and find out for sure.  My average could be higher than that, or it could be slightly lower, but I don’t think it is significantly lower than 3x.

If you have the US Airways card, were you targeted for this promo?  What are your spending patterns like on the card?  What is your strategy to maximize some of the bonus spending categories this summer on some of your cards?

Terms and Conditions for the US Airways 5x Summer Promo:

This bonus offer is for select US Airways Dividend Miles MasterCard cardmembers and is not transferable. Qualified cardmembers who register by July 20, 2012 will earn 5 bonus miles for every one dollar ($1) in new purchase(s) at gas stations, amusement parks and drugstores (that are not later returned or rescinded) that post to their account between July 1, 2012 and September 30, 2012 up to a maximum of 2,500 bonus miles. Eligible gas station, amusement park and drugstore purchases are defined by merchant category codes. Each merchant designates a category code to assign purchases at its establishment. Although most gas station, amusement park and drugstore purchases will use merchant category codes selected for this offer, it is possible that some gas station, amusement park and drugstore companies have designated a merchant category code that is not classified as a gas station, amusement park or drugstore. To be eligible for this offer, the cardmember’s account must be open and in good standing and they must have registered for this promotion by July 20, 2012. Purchases made during periods when the cardmember’s account is delinquent, their balance exceeds their credit line or their account is otherwise not in good standing as defined in the Credit Card Cardmember Agreement do not qualify for this offer. The bonus miles will appear on the cardmember’s statement up to 6-8 weeks after the end of the promotion.

 

Disclosure:  I do receive a commission if you are approved for a credit card using one of my affiliate links.  Some, but not all, of the cards listed in this post are my affiliate links.  I only link to the best publicly available deals that I know of.  As always, thanks for your support.  😉

Comments

  1. I just received the same email but can’t do this cause I just received my new Amex Biz Gold with a $10k spend requirement in 4 mos.

  2. I shop the drugstores all the time primarily Walgreens – you’ll be amazed how much you save there compared to Target, Walmart. I get a lot of free stuff. Follow Hip2Save.com.

  3. Just got same offer but NOT with my barclay’s usair card but with my barclay’s frontier airlines card. I like your analysis on how you’re going to split the spend between the Barclays card and the chase freedom card.

  4. For those with Freedom who are also targeted for this promo but don’t spend $500/month on gas it would be better to use the US Airways card at drug stores to buy $500 of visa GCs or ebay GCs and save freedom for gas spend.
     
    Re: restaurant expenses will go back to the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card for 2x and gas purchases will go back to the Ink Bold for 2x.”
     
    Why would you do that when you can get 4-5x via Ink?
     
    “I know this sounds a little bit complicated, and if you are new to miles and points, don’t feel like you have to use so many different cards for various purchases.”
     
    It really isn’t that complicated, and you could have made it a lot simpler for said readers if you had dispensed with the Sapphire Preferred referral link and focused on how to maximize Ink. I am consistently disappointed by some of the advice on your blog which seems to be heavily clouded by referrals.

  5. @Maury, you are totally right to focus on the minimum spending requirement first!
    @Witold, interesting to hear of the different versions that are out there. Thanks!
    @Shelia, thanks for the link! I’ll have to check that site out.
    @Larry D, thanks for the info and happy to hear the analysis of what my family is doing helped you some.
    @Hiker T, I agree that gift cards at drugstores is the way to go with this one if you are lucky enough to not spend very much on gas. As far as the Sapphire Preferred vs Ink. Sorry to hear you don’t like the advice (no one way is right for everyone), but I just write about what I do myself.

    I do use the Ink Bold to purchase some dining gift cards at 5x and I do also use it to purchase occasional Visa/MasterCard/etc gift cards at Office Depot also at 5x, but that is not how I primarily use that card. I do include links to card applications (whether they are mine or not) in the post, but that does not change the information that is being shared. Some use the Ink Bold for virtually everything, but that is not what my family does. It isn’t a system that is ideal for us, and I also have no desire to raise any red flags by purchasing thousands of dollars of things at office supply stores each month. I think Frequent Miler does a great job at highlighting that aspect of the Ink Bold, and while I do touch on it from time to time, that doesn’t mean that using the Sapphire Preferred for 2x at restaurants is bad or clouded advice – at least not in my opinion (clearly we differ on that issue).

    Regardless, thanks for the comment. 😉

  6. Oooh, I wonder if we’ll get this one next! My husband’s US Airways card has the $1250/month for three months promo for June/July/August, and for my card it’s July/August/September. I hope we can make both! Shouldn’t be hard, we spend a lot on our CCs.

    I’m curious: Has anyone gotten this offer stacked with the $1250×3 months offer?

  7. I think I need to stop using my US Air card. Maybe that will flip a switch in their system or something. I just got an Ink Bold… so that is where everything is going for a while…

  8. @Lindsay, I am not sure if people are getting targeted for two promos at once, but keep me posted if you are!
    @Fly Thai, I think that is actually a good strategy. Congrats on getting the Ink Bold – it is a great card!

  9. I only have a small ongoing bill on my US Air card and have not gotten any promos. That bill is coming off the card immediately; we’ll see if in the next 3-6 mos if I get a targeted promo.

  10. Where do I start? Wasn’t targeted for this one, but it’s probably because I have the free card (downgraded to it a few years ago) and likely not qualified for the offer. US is my hometown airline and former employer, but I prefer UA miles now. Nevertheless, I did go for their previous offer of 5x miles on gasoline when I received the email offer. Got just 250 miles for $500 in spending, and it turns out they don’t have a record of my registering for the promo. They’re investigating. Now I’m working on the spend requirement for the Chase Freedom card which I happily received 10 days ago – it was in the mail when we got back from 10 days in Canada (where the Sapphire card saved us alot in transaction fees) and look forward to transferring to UA. Also, my SPG card is up for renewal now, haven’t used it much and need to do so from now on.

  11. @Sheila Agreed and disagreed.
    I have been dealing with CVS for 4 years, and recently give up. Basically, I see a dramatic devaluation every year. This hobby just takes too much time and efforts to score too little. (to me it is just an endless stock of stuffs like shampoo, toothpaste)
    There is no Walgreens nor rite-aid around my area. Thus I can’t comment on those two.

  12. “so gas is a necessary evil in my house”

    How could a Texan say such a thing? Gas is a good thing that enables 49 lesser states to contribute to the Texas economy. And we thank you!

  13. Recently got my second US Air card with 2nd 40K bonus ( have two active US air card currently ). + received both bonuses on 2nd card. – 15K points for 1250x3mths spend ( July-Sept), and 5X bonus on gas/drugstore/amusement park ( July-Sept). Thus, 17.5K for $3750 spend in 3 mths. I received the 15K bonus on my 1st US Air card shortly after receiving it last yr also.

  14. We have the offer but for the Carnival (Funpoints)card.

    Would like to know what a “designated merchant category code” is and if there is a list to go by to be sure we are getting the points and not just spending money with no benefit.

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