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UPDATED OCT 17 2013:
Quill has made some changes to the program in the last six months:
Quill Cash now lasts 90 days instead of 60, making it possible to accumulate $80 at a time
To redeem Quill Cash you must have an order that totals $100 or more, AFTER all other coupons/discounts are applied.

I also discovered that Quill does offer some rebates here . None of the items are FAR or even close, really, but if it's something you needed to buy anyway, it can't hurt.

Pretty much everything else in the OP should still be accurate.

ORIGINAL POST:

Lately I've been recycling ink cartridges with Quill and wanted to share some details of the program. Hope this will be helpful.

TL;DR version: Compared to the Staples/OD/OM programs, Quill is most useful if you actually want to buy office supplies (or something else Quill sells) and get a hefty discount and/or you don't live near any big box office supply stores. If you're looking to convert ink cartridges into rewards into cash or keep rewards rolling forever, you should probably pass.

Quill is an office supply retailer that operates entirely through delivery. They do not have any physical stores and take all their orders from catalogs and the internet. While they were acquired by Staples in 1998, the company still operates as an entirely separate division of Staples Inc. Interesting fact - Quill was the plaintiff in a 1992 Supreme Court case (Quill v. North Dakota) that confirmed the proposition that a company cannot be liable to collect sales tax in a state where it has no presence. Link   

Quill also offers an ink recycling program. Since they have no stores to receive cartridge drop-offs, the program is conducted by mail. Quill provides free prepaid UPS shipping labels and/or boxes for you to ship ink cartridges back to them. Cartridges are rewarded with Quill Cash, which is Quill 's rewards program. Quill Cash can be used to purchase almost anything that Quill sells (it is specifically stated as "Not valid on HP and EPSON® products").

Basics of the program:

  • You get $2 per cartridge.
  • You are limited to $20 in Quill Cash (10 cartridges) per month. You can send more than 10, but you only get credit for the first 10.
  • In my experience "per month" means a calendar month and is calculated based on the date your ink is received at the recycling center.
  • Quill cash expires in 60 days. So, the maximum amount you could have at one time, just from ink recycling, is $60 (assuming you time it right, i.e. 10 late one month, 10 next month, 10 early the following month).
  • Similar to using Staples Rewards for an online purchase, when you redeem Quill Cash your total purchase must be greater than the amount of Quill Cash you are redeeming. Each month is a separate reward, so you can redeem in $20 increments, but each time you do one you must purchase at least $20 of stuff.


Other things to be aware of:

  • Quill offers free shipping on any order, regardless of size. So, even cashing out small amounts is not a problem.
  • In my experience Quill does not offer rebates. Thus, there is no easy way to convert the rewards into cash.
  • Unlike the rewards programs offered in stores, you do not have to buy anything to earn Quill Cash.
  • Since the cartridges are sent to Quill via UPS, you would need to have access to a UPS drop off (or give it to your UPS driver when you get deliveries). So, while it's better than the store-based programs for those who don't live near any big box stores, if you're really in the sticks, it could still be a pain.
  • The boxes they send you for inkjet cartridges are pretty small. Small cartridges like Canons or HP would fit best. Large ones like some of the Brother cartridges probably would not fit - you might need to use 2 boxes to send in 10.
  • Both inkjet and toner cartridges can be recycled, but each type must be sent separately.
  • In my experience, Quill Cash does "roll", but there are very limited oppportunities to roll it. Quill occasionally has promotions like "Buy $X of something, get $Y in Quill Cash". For example, last week they had "Buy $150 in cleaning supplies, get $30 in Quill Cash". Like this offer, in most cases $X is a very large number which makes the offer impractical unless you planned to buy that much anyway. However, once in a while they have better promos like "Buy a case of paper for $45 and get $25-$35 in Quill Cash". I can confirm that those purchases will generate new Quill Cash even if they are partially paid for with old Quill Cash. However, as I said, these opportunities do not come along that often - maybe one a month at most - and so there is no practical way to keep a large amount of Quill Cash "rolling" for very long. Also, be sure to sign up for their email blasts because there have been several times where a promotion like this was mentioned only in email and there was nothing about it on the web site.


Here's how to do it:

  1. Open a Quill account. This can be done https://www.quill.com/Account/Registration/UserInformation.aspx?iAction=5&ReturnUrl=/account/settings/managemyaccount.aspx  . Please note: Quill caters to businesses, not individuals. Be sure to put a business name in when you create your account - even if it's just "You & Co." and you say you are a consulting firm with 1 employee. While it is possible to create an account as an individual, the account will not have access to the same privileges as a business account - for example, there are certain products like KCups that Quill will not sell to an individual. Also, if you don't include the business name when initially creating the account, there is no way to later change the account to a business account even if you add a business name. It will always be considered an individual account.
  2. Once you have your Quill account, log in and go to their ink recycling page here   . Note the links on the right side - you can either order boxes, which come with prepaid shipping labels attached, or if you want to use your own boxes you can just print out prepaid labels directly. If you order boxes, they are sent out in packs of 3-4 and I find they take a week or so to arrive. They are shipped out from the Chicago area. While you can only order one set of boxes per order, the system does allow multiple identical orders to be repeated in a short time.
  3. Send in your cartridges. Keep the UPS tracking number in case there is a problem.
  4. About 2-3 days after your cartridges have been received at the recycling center, you can start to check and see if they have posted. To check, follow these instructions exactly. There may be links elsewhere on the site that suggest they are the right place to go to check - they may not be. Here's what to do: Go to Quill.com . Log in and then go to the "My Account" menu at the upper right next to "Customer Service". Go to the last option, "Manage My Account". On the next screen, there is a menu in the middle entitled "My Accounting". The last option here is "My Quill Cash". Select this and it will show your current balance of Quill Cash, along with the expiration date.
  5. If the cartridges haven't posted by a week or so after they were received, consider contacting Quill to follow up. I have had to do this before and they will eventually post, but it may take several emails and a couple of weeks to do it.
  6. Spend your Quill Cash on whatever you want. Remember, there is no minimum order for free shipping. You can order online and select which Quill Cash vouchers you want to redeem right on the order page.


Finally, I know some folks on here have a bad opinion of Quill due to their behavior on previous coupon promotions that got widely distributed and then were not honored. I can't speak to that but I will say that their terms and conditions are very clear that they do not have to honor a coupon that you got through unauthorized channels, and they seem to be stricter than most about enforcing that especially if there is a run on something. That said, I have had nothing but friendly, pleasant and helpful service from them and their customer service folks have gone out of the way to help me with various requests.

Please post any questions and I'll try to answer them, although I have put everything I can think of in this post.

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Very nice detailed post. I had seen this program a bit ago, but didn't follow through.

I was wondering if you could offer up some suggestions on what does make sense to buy through them from your own experiences. Are there things that are resellable at a good value? Assuming it's tough to gather up more than $40, is there anything worthwhile to get for that?

In general, I would characterize their prices as high. Think of Staples/OD/OM "normal" prices, with the difference that items rarely go on sale, and when they do most of the "sales" aren't that great. My impression is they cater to businesses who are more concerned with speed or convenience than with saving every last dollar.

I am not sure what you have success with reselling, so it's hard for me to generalize. That said, when you're buying stuff at 0-10% of list price, it shouldn't be THAT hard to find something. They do sell high demand items like HP ink cartridges and the like.

If there is anything they sell that you actually use (and can't get FAR all the time like paper), I'd buy that. I buy all the kids school supplies this way - it saves me from driving around to all the different stores when they have their specials in August, plus there are some items they need that never go on sale. I also use it for KCups, on which their prices are competitive with Staples, some other snacks, and miscellaneous supplies. I've also bought stuff to donate to the kids schools. Paper prices are generally extremely high - I guess it's expensive to ship. I suppose if you get up to $60 there are some inexpensive printers and small electronics like that which don't cost too much more and might be an okay buy.

Also, if you need a small item to get over a threshold, I posted a bunch of fillers from Quill over in the filler thread.

Thanks for the info. Have they ever rejected any of your cartridges? Too crappy looking?

JamesTKirk said:   Have they ever rejected any of your cartridges?

Nope. And they apparently take all brands of cartridges. The FAQ says "Cartridge eligibility: All national brand name cartridges that are undamaged will qualify for QuillCash™."

I had to update my original post. I just noticed something I had never seen before on the site - it says QuillCash cannot be redeemed for HP or Epson products. I've never bought either one from Quill so I had not known that before.

Wow, great detailed post!
Thanx for sharing!

Thanks, even I can follow your directions.

Their site says,

"All national brand name cartridges that are undamaged will qualify for QuillCash"

Does that mean they won't accept the generic $2 Brother cartridges I buy?

tarcapone said:   Their site says,

"All national brand name cartridges that are undamaged will qualify for QuillCash"

Does that mean they won't accept the generic $2 Brother cartridges I buy?


I do not know, I have always sent in Canon or HP cartridges. You may as well try it out and see what happens - the shipping is free, so all you're out is a couple of generic ink cartridges if they aren't accepted.

crhptic said:   JamesTKirk said:   Have they ever rejected any of your cartridges?

Nope. And they apparently take all brands of cartridges. The FAQ says "Cartridge eligibility: All national brand name cartridges that are undamaged will qualify for QuillCash™."


I would try to send one generic cartridge in, so as to test the system.

Can multiple months' worth of Quill Cash be used in a single transaction? ie. can I use 3 months worth of $20 rewards on one $60+ order?

PennDisc said:   Can multiple months' worth of Quill Cash be used in a single transaction? ie. can I use 3 months worth of $20 rewards on one $60+ order?Yes, do it quite often. Takes a bit of timing to get the credit late in the first month.

mathfaster said:   PennDisc said:   Can multiple months' worth of Quill Cash be used in a single transaction? ie. can I use 3 months worth of $20 rewards on one $60+ order?Yes, do it quite often. Takes a bit of timing to get the credit late in the first month.

Thanks for the info. Would sending on the 15th or so be safe generally?

Also - will they count the cartridge limit for this month if it's received on, say, the 25th, if it doesn't get credited until contacted via email after next month begins?

PennDisc said:   mathfaster said:   PennDisc said:   Can multiple months' worth of Quill Cash be used in a single transaction? ie. can I use 3 months worth of $20 rewards on one $60+ order?Yes, do it quite often. Takes a bit of timing to get the credit late in the first month.

Thanks for the info. Would sending on the 15th or so be safe generally?

Also - will they count the cartridge limit for this month if it's received on, say, the 25th, if it doesn't get credited until contacted via email after next month begins?
Since you send carts via UPS you can track how long it takes to get to Erie, PA. If I drop my package at the UPS store on a Saturday, it goes out Monday night from the store and is received on Friday. Sent from CA. By the following Thursday they usually have processed the carts. You'll have to do your own timing.

I find that it takes between 1-5 days for the credit to show after the date the cartridges are received in Erie.

Aim to have your package received by around the 20th of the month and you should be fine.

PennDisc said:   Can multiple months' worth of Quill Cash be used in a single transaction? ie. can I use 3 months worth of $20 rewards on one $60+ order?

And - you didn't ask this, but it's useful to know: you can stack Quill Cash with coupons - i.e. if you have a "$20 off $60" coupon, you can buy $60.01 worth of stuff, use the coupon and then use $40 of Quill Cash to pay the difference.

love4money said:   crhptic said:   JamesTKirk said:   Have they ever rejected any of your cartridges?

Nope. And they apparently take all brands of cartridges. The FAQ says "Cartridge eligibility: All national brand name cartridges that are undamaged will qualify for QuillCash™."


I would try to send one generic cartridge in, so as to test the system.
Anyone knows if generic cartridges will get credits?

swc888 said:   love4money said:   crhptic said:   JamesTKirk said:   Have they ever rejected any of your cartridges?

Nope. And they apparently take all brands of cartridges. The FAQ says "Cartridge eligibility: All national brand name cartridges that are undamaged will qualify for QuillCash™."


I would try to send one generic cartridge in, so as to test the system.
Anyone knows if generic cartridges will get credits?


Nobody has posted any experiences yet.

Question about redeeming Quill Cash. When you want to apply Quill cash to an order do they put a hold on the full amount first and then debit the Quill cash, because I seem to be having problems when I try to use a prepaid credit card which contains enough for the amount after Quill cash is deducted.

balmybag said:   Question about redeeming Quill Cash. When you want to apply Quill cash to an order do they put a hold on the full amount first and then debit the Quill cash, because I seem to be having problems when I try to use a prepaid credit card which contains enough for the amount after Quill cash is deducted.You could have issues with AVS and not a balance issue. Do you have other pre-auths on the card not leaving enough balance for the cash? Or, does a $1 pre-auth and the balance exceed the balance on the prepaid card?

When I place orders with an AMEX, the hold is only for the net amount of the order after Quill cash. Not saying this would be the same for all other cards, but that's my experience.

Thanks great post

Ok my first recycling posted about a week ago. It says the money is available. When I go through all the checkout pages the Quill cash never appears. Just a coupon box. Tried two browsers. Anyone have any idea why? I've never made a purchase there. Do you have to make a first purchase before they start releasing the Quill cash?

JamesTKirk said:   Ok my first recycling posted about a week ago. It says the money is available. When I go through all the checkout pages the Quill cash never appears. Just a coupon box. Tried two browsers. Anyone have any idea why? I've never made a purchase there. Do you have to make a first purchase before they start releasing the Quill cash?Should be an option on order page where you click use Quill cash and then your cash appears.

JamesTKirk said:   Ok my first recycling posted about a week ago. It says the money is available. When I go through all the checkout pages the Quill cash never appears. Just a coupon box. Tried two browsers. Anyone have any idea why? I've never made a purchase there. Do you have to make a first purchase before they start releasing the Quill cash?

Did you follow the instructions in my OP to see your Quill cash?

If you did, and that doesn't work, I'd try calling or chatting with customer service.

crhptic said:   
Did you follow the instructions in my OP to see your Quill cash?

If you did, and that doesn't work, I'd try calling or chatting with customer service.


I followed your instructions under number 4. It shows $20 in Quill cash with an expiration date. It also shows an example of what to look for at checkout to use the cash. It just doesn't appear on the checkout pages. I was hoping to avoid chatting and have them see I'm only buying with Quill cash and I'll probably never buy anything else there as it's all so expensive.

JamesTKirk said:   crhptic said:   
Did you follow the instructions in my OP to see your Quill cash?

If you did, and that doesn't work, I'd try calling or chatting with customer service.


I followed your instructions under number 4. It shows $20 in Quill cash with an expiration date. It also shows an example of what to look for at checkout to use the cash. It just doesn't appear on the checkout pages. I was hoping to avoid chatting and have them see I'm only buying with Quill cash and I'll probably never buy anything else there as it's all so expensive.


That's weird. If it shows there, it ought to show up at checkout.

I suppose you could test the theory that you need to order something first. Since Quill has free shipping on all orders, try ordering one of the $0.49 filler items from the filler thread, and then see if it shows up after that.

Though, I do think you could probably just chat and ask them the question. They honestly don't care if you're using Quill Cash or buying more stuff or not. I've placed phone orders where I've paid with $100 of Quill Cash and around $1.50 of my own money and the rep didn't bat an eye.

My only Quill orders were for free recycle ink boxes and the $40 I used from ink, when I paid like 84 cents in total.

I don't think it matters what was previously ordered, for the cash to display

Thanks for the responses. Not sure what the problem was but talked to them and they added it after the order. Hopefully it works going forward.


screenshot of Quill Cash checkout
Disclaimer
Has there been a change in Quill Cash policies? I see the following when I attempt to checkout: "Note: Quill Cash can only be applied when your merchandise total is $100 or more after discounts are applied." I haven't made an order there before but have followed the instructions in this thread on ink recycling for Quill Cash. On the plus side, it appears that Quill Cash has a 90 day expiration instead of 60, so it should be possible to get 4 months' worth of Quill Cash into an order. However, it'll require $100 orders, so $20 OOP spend at minimum.

PennDisc said:   Has there been a change in Quill Cash policies? I see the following when I attempt to checkout: "Note: Quill Cash can only be applied when your merchandise total is $100 or more after discounts are applied." I haven't made an order there before but have followed the instructions in this thread on ink recycling for Quill Cash. On the plus side, it appears that Quill Cash has a 90 day expiration instead of 60, so it should be possible to get 4 months' worth of Quill Cash into an order. However, it'll require $100 orders, so $20 OOP spend at minimum.Would appear to be the case: http://www.quill.com/content/iw/adv/2012/07/118/default.aspx

Not crazy about the change but still a good deal even if their prices are somewhat inflated depending on what you buy. With the 90 days until expiration, I guess I will be buying there 3 times a year instead of four. If you buy ink carts for $.20/cart off eBay you are still getting better than a 90% discount. Now with the extra $20 it is more like 70%. At least you do not pay sales tax on the amount paid with Quill cash.

That must have just changed today, because I placed an order yesterday that was paid with $20 Quill cash, $15 coupon, and ~$5 of real money.

Can't say I blame them, really, because I placed an order yesterday that was paid with $20 Quill cash, $15 coupon, and ~$5 of real money.

Has anyone sent in generics yet?

At least Staples gave notice, this came out of nowhere and left many people with Quill cash they can never use. How devious.

user0001 said:   Has anyone sent in generics yet?

I have some in transit, will hopefully know something next week.

crhptic said:   user0001 said:   Has anyone sent in generics yet?

I have some in transit, will hopefully know something next week.


Update: my generic cartridges were processed and awarded Quill cash just like name brand cartridges.

Today I received an (unexpected) message from Quill.com , saying "Enclosed is your Ink & Toner Recycling QuillCash":
Thank You for recycling your ink cartridges; You've earned $20 in Quill Cash.
You'll see the QuillCash you've earned at checkout...must be redeemed* by 09/07/2013.
* When the merchandise total is $100 or more after discounts are applied.
It definately has changed. I went through the checkout with $33 worth of stuff, and it says:
Note: QuillCash™ can only be applied when your merchandise total is $100 or more after discounts are applied.

1chris1 said:   Today I received an (unexpected) message from Quill.com , saying "Enclosed is your Ink & Toner Recycling QuillCash":
Thank You for recycling your ink cartridges; You've earned $20 in Quill Cash.
You'll see the QuillCash you've earned at checkout...must be redeemed* by 09/07/2013.
* When the merchandise total is $100 or more after discounts are applied.
It definately has changed. I went through the checkout with $33 worth of stuff, and it says:
Note: QuillCash can only be applied when your merchandise total is $100 or more after discounts are applied.
Saw this too. Basically means I won't be placing any more orders through Quill .

They also have not lifted the exclusion on HP and Epson products. I've sent plenty of HP (ink and toner) and Epson cartridges in, and sometimes they credit me for those and sometimes they don't. Remanufactured cartridges don't seem to make any difference. And they'll often only credit me for 4-8 out of the 10 cartridges I send in with no explanation of why some were rejected.

Skipping 43 Messages...
My last shipment to Quill , was involved in a train derailment in Canada, then went out for delivery , and never made it to the center.

Too much trouble to contact UPS.



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