How to Earn Miles and Points for Amazon Purchases (Reader Question)

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Instead of just answering this question from a reader about earning points for Amazon purchases directly via email, I thought it was one that many families might have, so I am going to answer it here.

Here is the question:

I have a quick question, when buying on Amazon or using Amazon Prime, is there a way to earn points (similar to using the Chase Ultimate Reward portal)?

When I had a baby, I became absolutely addicted to Amazon Subscribe and Save and Amazon Prime services.  Not only did they save me money, but they saved me time.  Amazon Subscribe and Save would automatically send me things like diapers and wipes every x number of weeks or months with a 20% discount right to my door, and Amazon Prime allows you to order tons of different items with free two-day shipping for $79 per year.  I know we get way more than $79 value from that service each year!  As a bonus, you can also share the Amazon Prime perks with up to four family members or coworkers. 

Once upon a time you could make Amazon purchases via the Hawaiian Airlines shopping portal to earn Hawaiian miles, but that no longer works for most items.  In fact, you will not find Amazon as an option in the popular online miles and points shopping portals the way that you will find most retailers.  However, this doesn’t mean you can’t earn extra miles and points for Amazon purchases.  The easiest and best way to earn miles and points for Amazon purchases is via buying Amazon or Kindle Fire gift cards with a rewards earning credit cards in stores that payout with a category bonus. 

For example, I have seen Amazon and Kindle Fire gift cards (which work essentially the same as Amazon gift cards) at office supply stores such as Staples and Office Depot.  If you purchase those gift cards there with a card such as the Ink Plus® Business Card that pays out at 5x for purchases at office supply stores, then you will effectively earn 5x Ultimate Reward points for your Amazon purchases.  The same holds true if you buy Amazon gift cards at a grocery store with a credit card that pays out a bonus for shopping at grocery stores.  On top of that, some grocery stores even allow you to earn fuel points for gift card purchases.  In that case you are earning miles/points for travel and a discount on gas for your car!  Here is a slightly older post with card and category bonuses, but I plan to do an updated list soon.

You can load the Amazon gift cards to your Amazon account here and that balance should be used for your purchases before your credit cards that are on file are charged.  I am now passed my Amazon Mom/Subscribe and Save days, so I can’t speak from personal experience on if those auto-shipments use your gift card balance first, but they should.

Amazon PurchasesThis method of earning miles and points does require a little advance planning so that you have the Amazon gift card available before you make your purchase(s), but it is a simple extra step that can really increase the number of miles and points you earn for these purchases that you were going to make anyway.


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  1. ” … then you will earn 5x Ultimate Reward points for your Amazon purchases when you go to use the gift cards.” Doesn’t the 5X bonus for Ultimate Rewards kick in when you buy the Amazon gift card at, say, Staples, rather than when you use it on Amazon? Thank you!

  2. Another option is to use my Citi Forward card for all Amazon purchases. This card gives 5 Thank You points per dollar at Amazon and other bookstores. This is simpler than having to buy gift cards at grocery stores with my Ax Blue cash(which earns 6% cash rebate on the first 6000.00 purchases annually). This way I can save my 6000.00 spending ability on that card for groceries. Gift card purchases would quickly consume my 6000. annual spending limit.

  3. You can also find a friend who is an amazon affiliate and buy everything through their link if they split the commission with you.

  4. John, thanks for sharing!
    Barb, in my head the process isn’t complete until I use the cards, but you are absolutely right that you do earn the points regardless of when you use the cards. Clarified the wording. 😉
    Fonzi, no talk of sharks, please. Heading to Maui soon. 😉
    Tomt, thanks for sharing!
    Dia, yeah they really are pretty each to get with a category bonus, thankfully!
    Grant, absolutely!
    Chris, nope, sometimes mention one of the other, but both still in aff network and both still work for 5x at office supply stores. 😉
    Chuck, that is also a good option if the gift card route is too cumbersome or otherwise impractical.
    Jordan, I don’t know much about Amazon’s affiliate network rules, but I’m sure some do things like that as well.

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