Earning Thousands of Miles on New Car Seats

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This week the time finally came for my large five-year-old to move out of the forward facing car seat she has had been in since she was about 6 months old.  She had outgrown her old car seat that was purchased long before I knew that kids essentially needed to be in car seats or booster seats until they get their driver’s licenses.  Our old car seats are approaching their expiration dates anyway, so since we have another kid who will be in car seats for years after C, we decided to get a new upright car seats that work for C now, and can then transition to our next child in a year or so when they are ready to move out of their infant car seat.

If you have bought car seats in the last decade or so, you probably are seeing dollar signs written all over this transition, and you would be right.  There are inexpensive car seats out there, but the Britax ones we like are typically at least $200 each, even when on sale.  Oh and did I mention we needed to get a new seat for Grandma’s car, too?  We didn’t buy a $200+ seat for somewhat infrequent use in Grandma’s car, but still, it all adds up, and this is just the beginning since we will need new infant seats for our next child before he/she is born this summer.

Let’s just assume that we are talking $500 worth of new car seats (though I bet the total goes over that counting the infant seats we haven’t purchased yet).  That is an unfortunate chunk of change to have to spend, so of course I’m sure all of us would want to maximize our miles and points earnings on that amount as much as possible.  There are endless retailers from which to buy car seats, but we found the best deals for what we wanted at good old Amazon.com.

As you may know, Amazon.com is not really in the miles and points shopping portals, so that method of earning points won’t work.  However, you can still earn bonus miles and points for Amazon purchases by first heading to a retailer that sells Amazon gift cards and then using a rewards earning credit card that pays out a bonus at that specific retailer to buy the Amazon gift card.

Amazon gift card

As an example, say you knew you were about to have $500 in Amazon purchases on car seats (or whatever).  If you have a Chase Freedom® you could simply head to the grocery store this quarter and buy a $500 Amazon gift card to earn 2,500 points via your Freedom for your purchase since grocery stores are a 5x bonus category (up to $1,500).  At some grocery stores that type of purchase would even earn you bonus fuel points to save on gas!  This is the route we took since I still hadn’t maxed out the $1,500 5x limit this quarter.

Of course this method of earning miles isn’t limited to the Freedom card and grocery stores.  You could do the same with a card like the Ink Cash® Business Card and get 5x at an office supply store that sold Amazon gift cards.  I could have gone that route, but it just so happened I was at a grocery store when I remembered we needed the Amazon gift card.

I spent maybe 60 extra seconds getting the Amazon gift card and loading it to my Amazon account, and in return we earned thousands of miles on car seats that we otherwise would have missed.  It isn’t glamorous or complex, but it all adds up to award flights and nights at hotels!

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Comments

  1. Hi! This is completely unrelated, but I just received my monthly update from Southwest and hidden in the email was a link to their website where they discuss modifications to the RR program starting April 17th, at which point certain redemptions will cost more based on several factors like destination, fare type, demand, etc.! Has this been discussed or noticed anywhere yet? I haven’t searched FlyerTalk yet…

      • That’s awesome. Yeah I hear ya. We had Hyatt Tamaya reservations for last October to see the National Balloon Festival in NM and had to cancel when we found out my wife was pregnant and due the following month. Will be looking forward to reading your trip reports for a couple of years. Being that we’re so close (SAT) I’m curious to pick your brain on what kind of short weekend (driving?) trips you guys take as we’re trying to find similar trips with our new 3-month old. Staying away from flights for the next few months until he’s old enough.

          • I think he means they were planning in advance for the October trip, but found out they were due in September thus requiring the cancellation. Just a guess. 😉

            FTG, I’m a big fan of Hyatt Lost Pines if you are just looking for a good resort nearby. Would be perfect for a weekend trip when it warms up and the baby could sit in the beach entry water and play.

  2. MP – Love the makeover! While I was touring the new site I noticed that your About page says C is four, but in this post it says she’s five.

  3. Totally know what you’re talking about on baby gear….I have twins. We did purchase four car seats at any given stage 🙁 2 for my car 2 in daddy’s car. I tend to drop them off at daycare/school and daddy picks them up.

  4. Good reminder. Love to hear more about the car seat you decide on. We’ve got a 4-year old that’s going to transition sometime soon…

    • Glenn, the best source of info for that is The Car Seat Lady http://thecarseatlady.com/
      The seat we got is different than what we would have got if we didn’t have #2 on the way who will use the seat for years to come. I would check out her site for good info on your specific situation given your kid’s size, your car, and whether or not there are other kiddos/car seats in consideration.

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