Manufactured Spending

The First Time I bought Points…

First time for everything, right?

This hobby has taught me a lot.  First, I was appalled by paying annual fees on credit cards.  I mean, I had my trusty Discover card.  Who needs a card that’s going to charge you just to use it?  Plus, way before all of that, I thought all credit cards were evil!

Then, I thought people chasing status were crazy.  I’m too tough for premium level service anyway, that’s for sissies.  That may have changed too.

And up until recently, I thought buying your miles was nuts.

Well, that’s all changed.


Gift Card Arbitrage: An Introduction

Welcome to my dirty secret.  I sell gift cards.  Lots of them.

I’m not walking up and down the streets “Geeeeet your gift cards here!”  But I am turning them and making a profit.  When you boil it down, gift card arbitrage (fancy name for reselling them) is commerce at it’s simplest form.

Find something.  Add value.  Sell for higher value.

Although with gift cards, it’s really more like this:  Find a gift card at a great deal.  Sell for market price.  The marginal profit between your buy rate and your sell rate is yours to keep!  I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the ability to earn credit card points/miles on the purchases, as well as the occasional shopping portal pay out!

So, let’s figure out how it works.


RadPad and Android Pay…It’s Complicated

I know you’re sick of RadPad, but this one is just a quick public service announcement in case you haven’t heard yet.  Although I’m sure you have heard,it wouldn’t feel right not to cover this.  I figure if I’m toting RadPad so often this year, I need to make sure the 0.000003% of humans that actually take my advice get the latest updates.

Long story short, RadPad has cancelled their Android Pay promotion.  The email went something like this:


Citi and AAdvantage

Citi and American Airlines seem to get along very well.  There’s a selection of Citi/AAdvantage co-branded cards, and Citi often offers miles for new bank accounts.  I got lucky with two special AAdvantage bonuses this past Fall.  I decided to take full advantage of both of them.



Hi everyone!  I have exciting news for those of you looking to increase your ability for monthly spend.  You know how I just posted about RadPad?  You already forgot?!  Sheesh, it was only last night..

Well, I should have waited another day, because I just heard news about RadPad, explaining some new information:

Using a MasterCard credit card now only incurs a 1.99% fee.

I know it doesn’t sound like much, but this is a big deal!  Hear me out:


Review: RadPad

This post has been updated with new information.  Please read this, and then check out the new post here.


RadPad essentially offers to pay your rent using a card.  Debit or credit, and they process the payment and then mail the check for you.  It is easy to use, but not a good idea for everyone.  They charge a 3% fee on credit card transactions, which makes it hard to justify for normal spending.  Think about it, do you want to spend an extra $3 for every $100 worth of rent?  Bills are tough enough as is!  However, in a few circumstances, RadPad can be a great tool to earn special card perks, or to meet a tough minimum spend on a new card.