May 26th, 2006


in which lish shows one of the reasons she has no debt

i've found a new way to squeeze money from rocks.

as many of you know, i am the king of free money. i pay attention to,, i use several online survey sites that either return cash or points that can be swapped for cash & prizes (comment with your email address if you want me to send you invitations to those sites, which gives us both more free points)... i've often been on the receiving end of "how the hell do you find all this stuff?!" just last week i filled a prescription for eczema cream & used a coupon that gave me a $25 gift card for changing to a new pharmacy - which means i actually made ten bucks on the prescription. (the time before, i used the exact same coupon at cvs & made money there. hah. i haven't paid for this prescription in years.)

anyhow, i don't post these things because i don't feel it's my responsibility to announce deals when they're so easy to find online, but i did tell some of you in email when citibank started giving away fifties. signing up at (which is still valid) allows you to make one purchase, then call to redeem 5k new member bonus points, which buys a $50 gift card at blockbuster (or the same amount at many other places). boom. so i got my mastercard, put a single dollar on it, & received my free money a few weeks later.

today i called to cancel the account, since i really don't need a second credit card - i get 1% back on everything through my other card, & i pay it off in full every month (as i've done since i first got a card in my name). they didn't want to lose me as a customer, but their reward program is skewed - to earn the points required for a gift, it would cost MORE in regular spending on their card than it does to earn the cash from my 1% card. ie, i could spend $25000 on their card & earn 250 points & get an ipod, or i could spend that $25k on my other card, get $250 in cash & buy the same ipod at any store for cheaper than $250. (the exception is straight gift cards, as 5000 points earns you a $50 gift card to various places, but why tie my money to a certain retailer when i could just get the $50 back straight?) ((also i don't want an ipod.))

so i explained this to the citi chick, & she offered to bonus me another 3k points after i spend $300 on their card, which isn't really worth it to me. but THEN she said she could switch me to some platinum card they have, which would give 1% on everything AND 5% on gas, groceries, and drugstore use, up to $300 back per year. no yearly charge. i said hell yeah. so now i have a card that i will use solely for gas & groceries & drugstores, making every gallon of gas about fifteen cents cheaper, & will continue to use my regular card for everything else since it has a matching reward & no cap on how much i can earn back.

moral: i rule.