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rated:
I just received a letter from AMEX in the mail. I didn't see this posted anywhere yet, so I thought I'd share.


With you Blue Cash from American Express Card, you earn a reward based on a percentage of the dollar amount of eligible purchases you make each bulling period. On purchases in certain categories, called Everyday Purchases, you can earn a higher percentage reward. We are making changes to the Everyday Purchases on which you can earn higher percentage rewards....You will receive blue cash reward dollars for eligible purchases on your blue cash from americn express card account. the number of reward dollars you receive is based on a percentage of the dollar amount of your eligible purchases during the billing period. eligible purchases are purchases made on your card for goods and services minus returns and other credits.

Eligible purchases do NOT include:
blah blah
- purchases or reloading of prepaid cards, or
-purchases of any cash equivalents
So I guess a question is how will AMEX determine what it is you're buying to determine what is eligible?

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Grocery coding is kind of a pain. I have an open ticket right now, because none of the $6K from last year posted as 6%,... (more)

stm69 (Mar. 06, 2014 @ 3:44p) |

logged into my accoutn today and it showed $222 in Cash Back that was not there before.

makinbutter (Mar. 15, 2014 @ 11:31a) |

Ditto, amount matches what I was shortchanged in December.

steve1jr (Mar. 15, 2014 @ 11:40a) |


rated:
Is this the old 5% card or the new one? I just went through my anniversary and mine still says 5% for all everyday purchases.

rated:
Is this the old Blue Cash, that requires $6500 spending before getting the bonuses? Or the Blue Cash Everyday or BCP, that doesnt have the tiers?

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I have the old card, but the changes are effective as of my anniversary date.

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I have the old Blue Cash. They'll have to pry it from my cold, dead hands.

I'll be on the lookout for this.

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I just received a brand new Blue Cash Preferred card in the mail today. It has the above stated exclusions of prepaid cards for the 6% reward dollars.

I need to make $1k in purchases to get my $250 signup bonus.
I'll make the $1k of purchases buying a OneVanilla card and gift cards at four different grocery stores. I can report back next month on what purchases failed to earn the 6%.

rated:
mcmike522 said:   I just received a brand new Blue Cash Preferred card in the mail today. It has the above stated exclusions of prepaid cards for the 6% reward dollars.
I need to make $1k in purchases to get my $250 signup bonus.
I'll make the $1k of purchases buying a OneVanilla card and gift cards at four different grocery stores. I can report back next month on what purchases failed to earn the 6%.


Me too! I plan on getting GC from grocery stores in order to have $1000 spent in 3 months. How can they tell if the purchase was for a GC or for orange juice? Yes, please report back if GC purchases are excluded. Thanks in advance.

rated:
Is this news?
 

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RedCelicaGT said:   So I guess a question is how will AMEX determine what it is you're buying to determine what is eligible?
Perhaps AMEX has hired Alex from Envaulted to scour obvious transactions?

Actually, AMEX operates their own vendor payment processing. Based on the frightening detail they disclose on some purchases (like Macy's, airline tickets, etc.), it wouldn't surprise me if they get similar SKU-level detail from most big merchants...

rated:
Interesting. Sound like the party may be over.

rated:
They are also limiting which drugstores count for the 5%. See details here https://www.americanexpress.com/us/content/rewards-info.html

You will earn additional rewards ONLY for purchases made in the U.S. at the following list of drugstores that accept the card:
CVS Pharmacy
DUANEreade
Rite Aid
Walgreens

rated:
jlgrandam said:   They are also limiting which drugstores count for the 5%. See details here https://www.americanexpress.com/us/content/rewards-info.html

You will earn additional rewards ONLY for purchases made in the U.S. at the following list of drugstores that accept the card:
CVS Pharmacy
DUANEreade
Rite Aid
Walgreens


This list and set of explanations seems better:

https://www.americanexpress.com/us/content/rewards-info/retail.h...

rated:
It's interesting to see who is posting in the thread. Many people who registered almost 10 years ago with very few posts...

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uh2 said:   I have the old Blue Cash. They'll have to pry it from my cold, dead hands.

I'll be on the lookout for this.


Me too. I feel the same way. The new tiers are trash IMO.

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Any idea how they can track purchasing GC's if I buy groceries too? Anyone know a lot about this?

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Logic would say most people don't spend $1000+ 3 times a week at the grocery store ... they could start there. It all comes down to if their time and effort is outweighed by the rewards they are giving out. In the case of the new Blue Cash cards with the $6000 limit, I doubt it is worth their time to track down. On the old Blue Cash cards with no limit, they may find it worthwhile or just impose the same type of limits they did to the new cards.

rated:
They also had exclusions in my last statement for the BCP about only US transactions as qualifying for the extra percentages. Just looked and missed these exclusions. States not effective until first billing period after May 1, 2013. I wonder if in regards to purchases of prepaid cards they are talking about what you buy from AMEX or such other sites and not when you buy prepaid cards at a grocery.

rated:
Not sure which Blue card I have (new or old), but when I signed up in Feburary last year there was no limit on Cash Back in any category. The AMEX site now states the following for Preferred Blue Card benefits (for those who haven't seen it). So does this mean my unlimited Cash Back Blue card is now capped?

Get Cash Back for all of your eligible purchases in the U.S. Get 6% Cash Back at U.S. stand-alone supermarkets, 3% Cash Back on gasoline at U.S. stand-alone gas stations, 3% Cash Back at select major department stores; and 1% Cash Back on other purchases. Cash Back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit. The first $6,000 of purchases at U.S. stand-alone supermarkets in a calendar year qualifies for 6% Cash Back; 1% thereafter. Cash Back is earned only on eligible purchases.

rated:
jasmithvr6 said:   Not sure which Blue card I have (new or old), but when I signed up in Feburary last year there was no limit on Cash Back in any category. The AMEX site now states the following for Preferred Blue Card benefits (for those who haven't seen it). So does this mean my unlimited Cash Back Blue card is now capped?

Get Cash Back for all of your eligible purchases in the U.S. Get 6% Cash Back at U.S. stand-alone supermarkets, 3% Cash Back on gasoline at U.S. stand-alone gas stations, 3% Cash Back at select major department stores; and 1% Cash Back on other purchases. Cash Back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit. The first $6,000 of purchases at U.S. stand-alone supermarkets in a calendar year qualifies for 6% Cash Back; 1% thereafter. Cash Back is earned only on eligible purchases.
You have an AMEX Blue Cash Preferred as you are getting 6% on groceries. Find your October statement. The exclusions are there on the $6,000 cap. The limit kicks in on your renewal after January 15, 2013. Also, the $6,000 cap is shown on the page when you click on the link "Track Your Rewards dollars" from the main account page.

rated:
Well that just sucks!!! Primary reason for getting the card was high % Cash Back with no limits, which justified the annual fee. I spend $750-$800/month in legitimate grocery store purchases, so looks like I'm getting shorted >$200 annually. So this begs the question, is this still the best FW credit card out there or are there others that should be considered?

rated:
jlgrandam said:   You will earn additional rewards ONLY for purchases made in the U.S. at the following list of drugstores that accept the card:
CVS Pharmacy
DUANEreade
Rite Aid
Walgreens
Too many folks must have been classifying their home-grown merchant account as a drug store

rated:
mathfaster said:   jasmithvr6 said:   Not sure which Blue card I have (new or old), but when I signed up in Feburary last year there was no limit on Cash Back in any category. The AMEX site now states the following for Preferred Blue Card benefits (for those who haven't seen it). So does this mean my unlimited Cash Back Blue card is now capped?

Get Cash Back for all of your eligible purchases in the U.S. Get 6% Cash Back at U.S. stand-alone supermarkets, 3% Cash Back on gasoline at U.S. stand-alone gas stations, 3% Cash Back at select major department stores; and 1% Cash Back on other purchases. Cash Back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit. The first $6,000 of purchases at U.S. stand-alone supermarkets in a calendar year qualifies for 6% Cash Back; 1% thereafter. Cash Back is earned only on eligible purchases.
You have an AMEX Blue Cash Preferred as you are getting 6% on groceries. Find your October statement. The exclusions are there on the $6,000 cap. The limit kicks in on your renewal after January 15, 2013. Also, the $6,000 cap is shown on the page when you click on the link "Track Your Rewards dollars" from the main account page.


Thanks for the link to "Track Your Rewards". I have checked mine and it is showing an amount that adds my last 2 billing statements from 12/15/2012 to 01/14/2013 and 01/15/2013 to 02/14/2013. This includes charges to groceries made in the 12/15/12 to 12/31/12 period.

I had made a large run in the final weeks and its now put me over 50% of the 6000 limit, when I have only spent 1k in regular groceries in this year's calendar.

Everybody might want to check what it says and what it adds up to, especially ones who stocked up at the end of December, depending on when your billing date is.

rated:
jasmithvr6 said:   Well that just sucks!!! Primary reason for getting the card was high % Cash Back with no limits, which justified the annual fee. I spend $750-$800/month in legitimate grocery store purchases, so looks like I'm getting shorted >$200 annually. So this begs the question, is this still the best FW credit card out there or are there others that should be considered?

Do you have at least one of the quarterly CashBack cards (Discover, Citi Dividend, Chase Freedom)? Each usually has one quarter per year that includes grocery, so that will cover $1500 of your grocery spending (at 5% cb) per card. If Citi, you can put $6000 on it in one quarter and get 5% on all of it.

rated:
dukerau said:   jasmithvr6 said:   Well that just sucks!!! Primary reason for getting the card was high % Cash Back with no limits, which justified the annual fee. I spend $750-$800/month in legitimate grocery store purchases, so looks like I'm getting shorted >$200 annually. So this begs the question, is this still the best FW credit card out there or are there others that should be considered?

Do you have at least one of the quarterly CashBack cards (Discover, Citi Dividend, Chase Freedom)? Each usually has one quarter per year that includes grocery, so that will cover $1500 of your grocery spending (at 5% cb) per card. If Citi, you can put $6000 on it in one quarter and get 5% on all of it.
Supermarkets aren't one of Discover's 5% bonus categories this year, unfortunately.

rated:
I have the old blue card from year 2000, I guess I will be using more of discover and chase depending what's in the qtr.

rated:
its impossible to find out what was purchased at the grocery store..

if i purchase 2 bananas and $500 worth of Shell gift cards..there is no WAY AMEX would know what i bought at the grocery store unless they asked every grocery store for a detailed receipt.

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jnheinz said:   Any idea how they can track purchasing GC's if I buy groceries too? Anyone know a lot about this?

I'm curious too. Every time I go to grocery store, I pick up different amount of GCs and grocery, so my total bill never is never the same anytime.

rated:
bradpitt11 said:   its impossible to find out what was purchased at the grocery store..

if i purchase 2 bananas and $500 worth of Shell gift cards..there is no WAY AMEX would know what i bought at the grocery store unless they asked every grocery store for a detailed receipt.


You'd be surprised as what they are tracking at the register.

rated:
They do have access to their own gift card records, and to Blue Bird card records. It would not be hard for them to exclude their own gift cards, which some may have been buying as a way to get 6% back (minus fees).

They can presumably see who is putting large amounts on their Bluedbird cards via certain reload routes. A combination of large Bluebird reloads via certain routes, and what appear to be large grocery store (or for that matter Drugstore) purchases creates a presumptive case that gift card were involved.

They may at some point negotiate agreements with large groceries which require them to treat gift cards (or certain gift cards) differently, and ring them up differently, or to provide them with information on request. Possibly this has been done for large Drugstore chains already.

I think they have language restricting use of these cards for business uses, so restaurant owners, fishing boat owners, caterers, etc. who might make very large grocery store purchases may be excluded already.

They have the legal right to cancel cards, and I could imagine them using it, or possibly reducing point awards, and when (and if the customer protests) saying to send it receipts, or choosing between forgoing the rewards or having cards canceled.

Some years ago FIA decided to deny points on a $100,000 charge by CITI (of a type they had similarly given points for). They stated points would be credited if they got a receipt from CITI showing just what goods were purchased for the $100,000. Till then, they were presuming it was to fund a new account, which they felt was a cash equivalent.

They are in a better position if they deny points, or cancel cards causing loss of points, and if there is legal action (or even bad publicity), than Chase was when they canceled large numbers of cards and points which the customers were expecting.

rated:
ProfessorEd said:   
They may at some point negotiate agreements with large groceries which require them to treat gift cards (or certain gift cards) differently, and ring them up differently, or to provide them with information on request. Possibly this has been done for large Drugstore chains already.



I'm worried this may be the reason they are restricting the drug store CashBack to only a few big chains.

rated:
tomprc said:   Is this news?


Did you guys mean $150 bonus?


I just applied and got approved for $150 for $500 spent in first 3 months. Never got $250 offer...

rated:
ProfessorEd said:   They do have access to their own gift card records, and to Blue Bird card records. It would not be hard for them to exclude their own gift cards, which some may have been buying as a way to get 6% back (minus fees).

They can presumably see who is putting large amounts on their Bluedbird cards via certain reload routes. A combination of large Bluebird reloads via certain routes, and what appear to be large grocery store (or for that matter Drugstore) purchases creates a presumptive case that gift card were involved.

They may at some point negotiate agreements with large groceries which require them to treat gift cards (or certain gift cards) differently, and ring them up differently, or to provide them with information on request. Possibly this has been done for large Drugstore chains already.

I think they have language restricting use of these cards for business uses, so restaurant owners, fishing boat owners, caterers, etc. who might make very large grocery store purchases may be excluded already.

They have the legal right to cancel cards, and I could imagine them using it, or possibly reducing point awards, and when (and if the customer protests) saying to send it receipts, or choosing between forgoing the rewards or having cards canceled.

Some years ago FIA decided to deny points on a $100,000 charge by CITI (of a type they had similarly given points for). They stated points would be credited if they got a receipt from CITI showing just what goods were purchased for the $100,000. Till then, they were presuming it was to fund a new account, which they felt was a cash equivalent.

They are in a better position if they deny points, or cancel cards causing loss of points, and if there is legal action (or even bad publicity), than Chase was when they canceled large numbers of cards and points which the customers were expecting.


OK, I've seen posts claiming CC companies know what you buy at retail store. Is that lawfully allowed? I know with "store loyalty card" companies can harness consumer information.

If large drugstores decide to "sell" consumer information to the CC companies, aren't they required to have that in writing somewhere in their web site to ensure that they are not breaking HIPPA compliance?

rated:
dukerau said:   jasmithvr6 said:   Well that just sucks!!! Primary reason for getting the card was high % Cash Back with no limits, which justified the annual fee. I spend $750-$800/month in legitimate grocery store purchases, so looks like I'm getting shorted >$200 annually. So this begs the question, is this still the best FW credit card out there or are there others that should be considered?

Do you have at least one of the quarterly CashBack cards (Discover, Citi Dividend, Chase Freedom)? Each usually has one quarter per year that includes grocery, so that will cover $1500 of your grocery spending (at 5% cb) per card. If Citi, you can put $6000 on it in one quarter and get 5% on all of it.


I already have a BoA card that pays 1.5% on everything with no limit and no annual fee. Would prefer not to juggle 3 or more credit cards, but if there was one out there similar to the AMEX Blue Preferred that didn't cap spend in certain categories, I'd consider jumping. My guess is if something like that existed, it would have already been raised here.

rated:
Eligible purchases do NOT include:
blah blah
- purchases or reloading of prepaid cards, or
-purchases of any cash equivalents

The above exclusions are not new, based on cardmember agrements as of 1/1/2013
https://web.aexp-static.com/us/content/pdf/cardmember-agreements...

rated:
vagrants said:   ProfessorEd said:   They do have access to their own gift card records, and to Blue Bird card records. It would not be hard for them to exclude their own gift cards, which some may have been buying as a way to get 6% back (minus fees).

They can presumably see who is putting large amounts on their Bluedbird cards via certain reload routes. A combination of large Bluebird reloads via certain routes, and what appear to be large grocery store (or for that matter Drugstore) purchases creates a presumptive case that gift card were involved.

They may at some point negotiate agreements with large groceries which require them to treat gift cards (or certain gift cards) differently, and ring them up differently, or to provide them with information on request. Possibly this has been done for large Drugstore chains already.

I think they have language restricting use of these cards for business uses, so restaurant owners, fishing boat owners, caterers, etc. who might make very large grocery store purchases may be excluded already.

They have the legal right to cancel cards, and I could imagine them using it, or possibly reducing point awards, and when (and if the customer protests) saying to send it receipts, or choosing between forgoing the rewards or having cards canceled.

Some years ago FIA decided to deny points on a $100,000 charge by CITI (of a type they had similarly given points for). They stated points would be credited if they got a receipt from CITI showing just what goods were purchased for the $100,000. Till then, they were presuming it was to fund a new account, which they felt was a cash equivalent.

They are in a better position if they deny points, or cancel cards causing loss of points, and if there is legal action (or even bad publicity), than Chase was when they canceled large numbers of cards and points which the customers were expecting.


OK, I've seen posts claiming CC companies know what you buy at retail store. Is that lawfully allowed? I know with "store loyalty card" companies can harness consumer information.

If large drugstores decide to "sell" consumer information to the CC companies, aren't they required to have that in writing somewhere in their web site to ensure that they are not breaking HIPPA compliance?


i don't see a way that they can accomplish this other than looking at the amount charged and determining that it is a cash equivalent. even if it were legal, i why would a drug company expose itself to this kind of liability? and even if they did, i can't imagine that either side would want to manage the data. whatever i've done with this activity started in january, and am3x has not compiled the rewards for that month yet (it's done on a month-over-month basis, not with the billing cycles). i should see it in the next few days (hopefully--or at worst by end of month) and will report back. i have a legacy card product, though, so it might be different (although I believe the TOS are similar).{/Q]

it worked...

rated:
I have routinely seen AMEX list out purchase details for airfare purchases when you click on "transaction details" on their website. On a couple of occasions sometime last year, for regular purchases (non-airfare) I have even seen the 1st 2-3 items on the receipt listed similarly under transaction details online. I remember being livid then as to why the store was even providing the details to AMEX and that too without my expressed consent.

rated:
Data point. They have no way of identify GC purchases in grocery stores. I just bought $300 worth of cards yesterday. The only issue is what they term a grocery store. In Southern California, Albertsons is not a grocery store according to AMEX. But Vons and Ralphs are considered grocery stores. Trader Joes is not a grocery store, neither are organic food markets.

rated:
NorthStar2020 said:   Data point. They have no way of identify GC purchases in grocery stores. I just bought $300 worth of cards yesterday. The only issue is what they term a grocery store. In Southern California, Albertsons is not a grocery store according to AMEX. But Vons and Ralphs are considered grocery stores. Trader Joes is not a grocery store, neither are organic food markets.

trader joe's is a grocery store in atlanta.

edit...just checked my online account since I was at trader joe's in california recently...


Doing Business As
TRADER JOES 022
Merchant Address
OCEANSIDE, CA UNITED STATES
Category
Merchandise & Supplies - Groceries

rated:
NorthStar2020 said:   Data point. They have no way of identify GC purchases in grocery stores.

Based on what, your extensive research? Thanks for the anecdote though.

Skipping 445 Messages...
rated:
makinbutter said:   
makinbutter said:   has anyone else seen recent problems on grocery store coding? i had about $1k in december and $6600 in january that appear to have been coded outside of grocery.
  logged into my accoutn today and it showed $222 in Cash Back that was not there before.

  Ditto, amount matches what I was shortchanged in December.

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