As an Average Joe, we are always watching for Arbitrage opportunities. And, when they happen, you have to be ready to go big or go home.
For Christmas 2016 I had been on the arbitrage prowl, looking for opportunities as Christmas is popular with merchants looking to offer gift card incentives to us, the Average Joes. I had found one store offering the above offer; $10.00 off a $100.00 (or more) purchase of a gift card.
I was frequenting this store everyday, buying what I could with the available credit that I had. I was purchasing $500.00 gift/debit cards, receiving $10.00 back in store credit, along with $10.00 in credit card credit (2% rebate on grocery store purchases).
I was happy with this transaction, as each card purchased netted me $14.05 in credits after spending $5.95 to activate the gift card.
However, the week before Christmas, the store modified their promotion and changed the programming of their cash registers. I walked in and made my daily debit card purchase of $500.00 when something unexpected happen. The sale rang up as $450.00, plus the activation fee of $5.95, for a total cost of $455.95. The cashier smiled, bagged my gift/debit card, and wished me a “Merry Christmas.” I then walked away from the transaction with a $500.00 debit card.
I had just purchased a $500.00 debit card for only $450.00, making a net profit of $44.05 for my debit card purchase!
I stood there in disbelief.
I then circled back and began purchasing several more debit cards. In fact, I used every credit card I could and purchased my store allowed limit of $2,000.00 per day for debit cards. I purchased four cards, each at $500.00 and I then walk out of the store with a “cash profit” of $176.20. I was shaking from the excitement.
This is Average Joe Arbitrage at its best!
I then did this transaction every day, working within the constraints of my credit limits and the amount of time it took for my banking deposits to clear, until the store ended the sale a week later. I grossed almost $1,000.00 for Christmas week!
My Christmas shopping was paid for and then some!