For many of us, “holiday shopping” has become synonymous with “searching Amazon.” Wish lists and automated suggestions make gift-giving a carefree experience. You can conceivably find presents for all your loved ones without stepping outside.
An Amazon Prime membership makes an easy stocking stuffer. Tap or click for 15 perks that come with an Amazon Prime membership.
Combing through the endless product listings can be exhausting. That’s why I’ve done the heavy lifting for you. Tap or click for my trusted product reviews and buying guides on all kinds of tech from smartwatches, phones and laptops to headphones.
Since you’re shopping on Amazon, you might as well get money back for doing it. Let’s get started.
1. Use the credit card Amazon wants you to use
Amazon often advertises its credit cards, promising cash back. There are a lot of benefits that come with an Amazon card, but they vary by type.
First, there is the Amazon Reward Visa Signature card. With it, you’ll receive 3% back when you shop at Amazon and Whole Foods Markets. You’ll also get 2% back at restaurants, gas stations and drugstores. Plus, you get 1% back on all other purchases.
The second option is for those who are Prime members: the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature card. With this card, you’ll get 5% back when you shop at Amazon and Whole Food markets, which is 2% more than non-Prime members receive.
Just like the card for non-Prime members, this one will also give you 2% back at restaurants, gas stations and drugstores. All other purchases will earn you 1% back.
Amazon also lets you use your cash back balance on future Amazon purchases. Just link your card to your account, and when you buy stuff on Amazon, it’ll give you an option to apply your cash back balance to the new purchase.
As you shop, Amazon ads may pop up more often than usual. Tap or click here to turn off those nosy advertisements.
2. Other credit cards that offer rewards
There are plenty of other cards out there to choose from that offer rewards on Amazon.
For example, Discover has a cash back offer that will help you save money. You can earn 5% back on up to $1,500 in purchases in various categories throughout the year, along with 1% back on general purchases.
During the holiday shopping season this year, Amazon is one of those qualifying categories. From October through December, you’ll get 5% back on all purchases made through Amazon.
RELATED: Don’t be fooled by clever shopping scams like fake Amazon delivery notifications and phony websites that exist only to steal your money. Tap or click for 5 more scams watch out for.
Another is Bank of America’s Cash Rewards Credit Card. You can earn 3% back in the category of your choice. Choose from gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drug stores and more.
If you want to get the 3% back from Amazon, you’ll need to select online shopping as your category. You’ll also get 2% back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs, plus 1% back on all other purchases.
3. Use a cash back website
Cash back websites are relatively simple. Just sign up for a free account, and when you complete a purchase with any of the site’s participating merchants, you get cash back. It’s just like using a coupon, except you earn money back after the purchase has been successfully completed and tracked.
A key example is TopCashback. You can earn cash back on your purchases and browse the TopCashBack site to choose from thousands of retailers, including Amazon, for exclusive cash back offers.
RELATED: There are lots of ways to get free Amazon gift cards to ease the burden to your wallet. Tap or click for 10 ways to shop smarter.
Just click through to your favorite retailers and shop like normal. The retailer pays TopCashBack a commission for your purchase, and it adds this as cash back to your account.
You can earn more by using the TopCashBack app where you’ll find coupons, in-store coupons and instant account access. The app is available free for both Apple and Android gadgets.
4. Find rebates on Rakuten
If you’re not familiar with the name Rakuten, you may recognize “Ebates.” When Ebates re-branded, it took on the name Rakuten.
You can sign up free with a Gmail account or link to Facebook. There are typically signup bonuses, such as a free $10 Amazon gift card or similar promotions. Once you’re in, you can shop at over 2,500 stores and earn up to 40% back on your purchases.
Stores pay Rakuten a commission to get eyes on certain items, and Rakuten shares the commission with you in the form of cash. You can also get cash back through Rakuten when you shop at Amazon. Tap or click to learn more about Rakuten and other apps that pay you to shop.
There are some special terms to adhere to, which include cash back is only available for select departments, and it’s not available on gift cards, Prime memberships, wine or more.
Bonus Tip: Shop Amazon’s Warehouse Deals
For second-hand goods, Amazon Warehouse stocks lightly used products that are still functional but don’t qualify as “new.” Conditions range from “Refurbished,” “Like New” and “Very Good,” down to “Acceptable,” and the product information includes notes on what defects or blemishes to expect on a particular item.
As you might expect, you’ll find a treasure trove of electronics from video games and widescreen TVs to smartwatches and Bluetooth speakers.
This marketplace does have its risks. The items aren’t in perfect condition, and most electronics do not come with warranties. Amazon does honor a generous return policy, and you can sometimes procure a warranty or protection plan from SquareTrade, depending on the item.
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