I don’t know about you, but the idea of Black Friday never excited me much. I get chills just thinking about standing in line with a crowd of people just to fight my way through a crowded store to possibly get a TV for half price. Not my idea of fun, and not just because we hardly ever watch TV at home anyway. You get the idea. Needless to say, I’m not the target audience for the traditional Black Friday sales.
When the consumer-created shopping day of Cyber Monday developed, I didn’t get the appeal either. That’s mainly because when I go to work on the Monday after Thanksgiving, I have work to do and no time to shop online. Apparently, many other people do and now we have a week full of sales from Pre-Black Friday to the newly coined phrase ‘Cyber Week.” but as a Dr. Who fan I’m not sure I like that one as it reminds me too much of these guys.
Like it or not, we’re already in the midst of the holiday season and by that, I mean more than people putting up their Christmas trees on November 1st. I’ve been getting emails for Black Friday sales starting mid-November and not a preview of items on sale. The sales have already started.
The first place many online shoppers go is Amazon.com. I mean you can buy almost anything you want there and have it shipped immediately. If you’re going to be doing your shopping on Amazon, here are three ways to make sure you’re getting the lowest price you can.
If you have a Discover card, just activate your quarterly bonus categories and you’ll earn 5% cashback on all Amazon.com purchases, up to $1,500. This is a really easy way to save if you have a Discover card.
Black Friday Sales
I’ve been looking for a device to stream Disney+ and a Fire TV Stick was one of the options. The 4K version was one of my top choices but I balked at the $50 list price. I can watch TV on my iPad Pro (one of its main uses at the moment), so did I want to pay to watch on an actual TV?
I remembered a post on Doctor of Credit listing the Amazon.com Black Friday offers. On November 24th, the Fire TV Stick was going on sale for $24.99 (a 50% savings).
Sure enough, the price drop showed up and I picked one up for $25. But I didn’t pay $25 for it because of the next trick.
Pay With Points Offers
Many credit cards and loyalty programs, including American Express, Chase, Discover, Citi, Capital One, and Hilton allow you to pay for Amazon purchases with your points. These offers are generally a terrible value so don’t go and use your points this way. However, you can choose to pay for PART of your purchase with points and that’s where things get interesting.
I read on Points, Miles and Martinis about a discount on Amazon devices if you pay with American Express Membership Rewards.
Would this 20% offer stack on top of the already discounted Black Friday sale?
Notice that I paid $0.01 with my rewards points. If you do that when checking out, you’ll end up spending one Membership Rewards point.
So I paid $19.99 for my Fire TV Stick 4K. I’m good with that.
Stacking offers like this is how I managed to get a pair of $299 Bose noise-canceling headphones from Amazon.com for $73 on Prime Day.
Membership Rewards isn’t the only program offering discounts if you pay with points. Out and Out recently listed all of the offers currently available.
For more information on Amazon’s Black Friday sales, as well as those on other sites, I follow this page on Deals We Like.
For Amazon. shopping, there are other ways to save:
- If you’re flying on JetBlue, in-flight Amazon.com purchases using the Fly-Fi service earn three True Blue points per dollar spent.
- You could always buy Amazon.com gift cards at places that pay a good return for specific stores like grocery stores or office supply stores. This method involves an extra step and you lose some of the purchase protections when paying with a gift card. I’d rather get the insurance.
- Use the Amazon Prime Visa card. I’m not saying it’s for everyone but for some people it makes sense to have and use it.
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary