Not a lot to report on Day 6. I got back from California only to find my car battery had died on me. Bugger! Fortunately I recalled reading something about Amex Platinum Roadside Assistance and I called them and they had someone out to jumpstart me within 45 minutes. <Note to assistant: insert endless links about various Amex cards that offer roadside assistance here>. So after getting home late and busy catching up with work  I only had time for a late night dash to CVS to get $3k in OneVanilla’s which I unloaded via a mix of BillPay and MO’s at WM on the way home. Bought with the trusty Citi TYP 5x. The only thing to note is one out of the six had a different design, not sure if this is old or new but I still like it. OneVanilla’s are the BEST GC’s… only $4.95, no need to call and set a PIN (just use any PIN and whatever you use the first time will stick – like we ever use these cards more than once!) and they look like real debits with embossed numbers and no mention of “Gift” or “Happy Birthday” or anything stupid like that.


TopCashBack Shutdowns

Some disturbing news from the FlyerTalk cauldron that is the MS forum. According to this thread it looks like TCB is starting to shut down accounts for ordering too many Amex Gift Cards. For a long time I stopped using TCB, their tracking was woeful and I never got orders credited correctly. This was just for regular spend not MS, and I just gave up on them and started using other more reliable sources. But I came back with the generous payouts on Amex Gift Cards and it appeared they had sorted out their tracking issues. But now they are shutting down accounts? I mean WTF? This is the most bizarre shutdown I have heard of. I can understand when a bank shuts down a card (even though I don’t think it’s legal) when they are getting creamed on paying out 5% rewards on an instrument earning them 2-3% in fees, but TCB exists to pay out commission based on affiliate linking. I can only assume there has been some new cluster.f. between them and Amex and they had to eat a boat load of payments. But even that doesn’t make much sense – if these guys are running their biz properly they should only pay when they get paid. Oh of course, I did say if these guys are running their biz properly.

So be careful out there folks. TCB are going to have a hard time on this one and I foresee many trips to various state small claims court in their tea leaves. I am going to sit on the sidelines with a bag of pop-corn and see how it turns out.

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  • De

    I’ve seen the ov design you have above for a few weeks. I like their discretion too. Any updates on our favourite grocer selling rl cards with cc? I’ve been striking out!

    • MilesAbound

      No I believe that op is now dead and buried sadly. Been a long time now since I tried. VGCs work fine though I prefer the OneVanil’s you can get elsewhere

  • Mr. Cool

    please explain how you use “BillPay” to unload 1vanillas?

    • MilesAbound

      Go to Walmart, say “I’d like to pay my mastercard bill please”, make some entertaining small talk to keep them happy, give them the card number and couple of other details, when total comes up say “can I split 4 ways please”, pay $500 on each card, done.

      • Mr. Cool

        interesting. thanks for the info. ill keep it in mind in case i run out of VRs

  • Gaurav

    I’ve never tried it but am curious–can the one vanilla be used to load bb? Thanks.

    • MilesAbound

      Sure can