$500 Visa Gift Cards for 95 Cents at Ralphs (Possibly other Kroger Grocery Stores)

Ralphs Logo

$500 Visa Gift Cards for 95 Cents at Ralphs (Possibly other Kroger Grocery Stores)

Greetings fellow long time readers and first time readers from Prior2Boarding.  As most of you know, I live in CA and post later in the evening (usually between 7-10PM PST).  If you are on the East Coast or other parts of the world, please note that 90% of my blog posts come at this time.  I try not to talk about the same thing as the 100+ other miles and points travel blogs do.  I’m sure all of you have probably seen your fair share of SPG transfers to US Airways and American Airlines miles posts and American Airlines dining reward posts.  Are you ready for some new reading material?  If so, please read on…

A few days ago, my mom went shopping at Ralphs (the Southern California grocery store owned by Kroger – thanks Wikipedia).  She brought home this offer and it looked interesting to me.  The offer “says” you will get a coupon for $5 off your next purchase after you buy 2 or more Visa or MasterCard Gift Cards.  It also “says” you will receive one coupon per transaction per day.  Well, the coupon is not exactly right…

$5 Gift Card Offer

I decided to buy 1 Visa gift card this evening after work today.  The activation fee is $5.95 per gift card.

Ralph Receipt $505.95 GC Purchase

After buying my first $500 Visa gift card, I received my first $5 off coupon.

$5 Off Future Purchase

I wanted to buy another $500 Visa gift card (with a different credit card) and I ended up getting another $5 off coupon.  Therefore, the terms of the coupon are not correct.  You only need to buy 1 gift card and you can get more than 1 $5 off coupon per day.  I’m not sure if this is an isolated issue just at my store, but you might have similar luck shopping at your local Ralphs or Kroger grocery store.

Update: King Soopers in Denver (Kroger grocery store) seems to be participating in this promo as well.  Please report any other grocery stores and locations.

King Soopers

For the record, these are not Vanilla (ice cream logo on front of packaging) gift cards.  They can have a PIN set by calling and can be used at Walmart for your “errands.”  Based on the math of 506 points for 95 cents, you are looking at 0.19 cents per point.  Happy 4th of July everyone!

If you have any questions, please leave a comment below.

P.S. What do you guys think of my logo that shows up on Prior2Boarding?  I know, I know, it is not very good. If you have *any* graphics design skills, can someone work on the logo and make the font look better and drop the “.com” from the name?  The raw PNG pic is here.  Thank you for your help!

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100 thoughts on “$500 Visa Gift Cards for 95 Cents at Ralphs (Possibly other Kroger Grocery Stores)

  1. Jeniffer

    Hi Grant, did you do self checkout when you bought this gift card at Ralph’s? If so, can I do self-checkout at grocery stores when I buy couple gift cards? that would be great since it would eliminate the awkwardness dealing with cashier who sometimes will get suspicious and some will give hard time if I buy three or four $500 visa gift cards.

    Reply
    1. Grant

      I used self check out, but you have to wait for the attendant to come over and help. He/she also checks ID, but I have never had a problem. I would start out small and not buy 3 or 4 $500 gift cards in one transaction, your credit card might be suspicious of a $1,500+ purchase at your local grocery store.

      Reply
  2. Daniel Rindsberg

    Funny… my coupon says it can’t be used to buy gift cards… I guess that’s not the case!

    Reply
    1. Grant

      The $5 off coupon says you can’t use it for gift cards (along with alcohol, tobacco, and pharmacy purchases). I am implying that you go back to the store later on (before the expiration date) and use the $5 off coupon to buy groceries.

      Reply
    1. Grant

      Hmm, you went to a Ralphs in SoCal? It’s possible that this promo is targeted. I buy a lot of gift cards and use my phone number / Ralphs account for all purchases.

      Reply
          1. alex

            Grant, you bought the purple variable load Visa GC in the picture above (U.S. Bank, I believe) right? Is calling to set a pin a pretty quick / easy process? And they load Bluebird/Serve just like any MetaBank one would? (I’ve gotten a bunch of Metabank ones from Staples before that work beautifully …)

            Debating getting an Amex Old Blue ….. if so, this would be one method to MS the initial $6.5k spend …

          2. Grant

            Yes, it is a US Bank card. It takes about a minute to set the PIN. The prompts are easy, you don’t have to wait for the sentence to finish before you can start typing. The more you do, the faster you will get. My record is 53 seconds.

          3. Alex

            Thanks Grant !!! Grant Thomas — best travel blogger ever bc he replies to his followers with such useful wise info. Coolest blogger ever bc he counts the seconds it takes to do things and provides that info to us !!!

        1. D3dish

          Yes. Just curious, you didn’t know it would spit out the $5 coupon on just one GC purchase, so were you prepared to pay 5.95 activation fee for that? Have you tried buying simon GC’s successfully in OC?

          Reply
          1. Grant

            I was planning on buying them separately. $505.95 is a lot for a grocery store. $1011.90 is way too much. Citi would have blocked it for sure. It was just a happy coincidence. I haven’t bought any Simon GCs, but I think they sell them at the Block of Orange and Shops of Mission Viejo (both about 10-15 minutes from me).

    1. Grant

      haha, small world. Sometimes I go over on Saturday or Sunday morning wearing my TWG t shirt #selfpromotion #noonecaresaboutme

      Reply
  3. Laura

    Looks like a good deal, since I buy groceries at Ralphs anyway. Thanks for the heads up, Grant. By the way, off topic, when is your next meet up? I recently relocated from NYC to L.A. and I know you’re in OC, but was wondering if you ever do meetups in the L.A. area. Thanks! p.s. I hope you enjoyed your recent trip to Spain. I’m originally from Madrid… :)

    Reply
    1. Grant

      I’ve talked about a meet up in LA or OC sometime in early August, but I haven’t made any real plans. Where in LA do you live? Madrid is a very nice city, it is huge!

      Reply
      1. Laura

        Currently living in West L.A. Still looking for a permanent place, since we’re in temporary housing following a relo from NYC. Early August sounds like a great plan. I find it funny that you think Madrid is huge… L.A. feels muuuch bigger because it’s so spread out, although population is about the same. Madrid has a population of about 3.5 million people, although it’s around 6 million if you count the suburbs…

        Reply
  4. Jeff

    Grant, do you know if Ralph’s do MO on these VISA debit cards? I have a few more that I need to get rid of since the Walmart OV fiasco =/

    Reply
      1. Jeff

        Sorry Grant, what is the difference between buying and selling MOs? I’m looking to liquidate my OV cards. Thanks!

        Reply
  5. Raul

    I live in Fresno (central Ca) no Ralphs in my area only Foodco which is owned by Ralph’s. Lately like up until 3 weeks ago I was able to buy these GC in Grants pics with a CC. No longer the case. Cash only is what I’m being told now. Hope this is not across all foodco stores will try other foodcos in my area tomorrow. Anyone out there having luck buying GC at FoodCo with a CC?

    Reply
  6. chrisflyer

    I got a $5 coupon after buying just one $500 gift card at Ralph’s in San Diego. I didn’t know about the promo at all so the coupon was a pleasant surprise.

    I then grabbed went back and bought another $500 at a different register using a different card and got another $5 coupon. And these cards still work at Walmart, woohoo!

    Reply
  7. choi

    Grant, have you try to load yet ? please follow up once you successfully load, it seem every brand of visa is different.

    Reply
      1. Stm520

        Based on my calculations…there isn’t a WM within 20miles of your Ralph’s that has a Kate, is there?!

        Reply
  8. RV3

    Just tried Ralphs in Fullerton CA and gave my Ralphs club card as normal… no coupon (we can’t all be winners, ymmv) But I only bought my usual amount – one

    Reply
  9. Rindsy

    Works in Long Beach… Maybe their coupon printer was out of order… Also you may have to buy $5 worth of other stuff in order to use the coupons once you get them

    Reply
      1. Danielle

        You can only use one per order. Just fyi. I tried to use 2 in one shopping transaction, and the register wouldn’t take it.

        Reply
          1. Grant

            I used 3 coupons with the same phone number in 3 different transactions in a 5 minute period. Also bought 2 more $500 gift cards and got 2 more coupons. This is kinda fun.

  10. Jayson

    Any data on if you can use more then one $5 coupon while checking out and buying groceries. FYI works in AZ.

    Reply
    1. Grant

      I’m not sure, but just buy 1 item that is over $5 and us the coupon. Then buy the rest of your groceries and use the other coupon. That should work.

      Reply
      1. Amanda

        Thanks Grant! I didn’t know that Foodsco and quik stop are part of Kroger. Will check it out and report if found something there.

        Reply
    1. Grant

      No, you can’t use the coupon on gift cards, tobacco, alcohol, or pharmacy purchases. I used the coupons for regular grocery items.

      Reply
  11. Jayson

    Here is some new data. I used x3 $5 off coupons on one order. Also sometimes the catalina printer does not print out the coupon, in that case go to customer service for your refund. I bought a total of x5 visas in separate transactions at the same store. I got the coupon on all of them but one of the transactions. Same thing happened to my brother as well.

    Reply
    1. Grant

      Thanks for the data point Jayson. I am surprised you could use multiple coupons for the same transaction, I would have thought the system would have blocked it. Good to know about the Catalina printer (never heard of that name before). Happy 4th of July!

      Reply
      1. chrisflyer

        I was blocked when I tried to use multiple $5 off coupons in one transaction. I had to split my merchandise up and do two transactions so I could use two coupons. Fortunately the cashier was happy to accommodate this. This was at Ralph’s.

        Reply
        1. Grant

          I was going to break my shopping into 4 transactions but the cashier told me he was able to override the system. So he scanned all the items and then proceeded to scan all 4 coupons and override the last 3. He said most cashiers don’t know how to do this. So YMMV.

          Reply
  12. Andrew

    I got the same offer at Kroger in Richmond, VA. One $500 gift card ($5.95 fee) yielded one $5 off coupon.

    Reply
  13. Gary sothard

    Grant
    I bought 2 visa gift cards that were issued from Bankcorp. I have a bluebird card. As of May or June cannot load to my card from Walmart. Is there a way that I can load the cards still using the Bluebird card.

    Reply
    1. Grant

      Hmm you have tried loading it with a PIN at Walmart, but it’s not working? What section of the reload process gives you an error?

      Reply
  14. Simon

    @Gary – buy money orders from Walmart. I did this morning with a US Bank Visa I bought from Ralph’s.

    Reply
    1. Rindsy

      WM gave me error code 51 when I tried buying an $800 MO with 4 $200 GCs, which I used to be able to do, paying the 70 cents fee in cash. How do you succeed in buying MOs at WM?

      Reply
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  16. PointsEarner615

    I purchased a $500 gift card at Fred Meyer and received the $5 coupon as well.

    What’s interesting is that if you read the promo, it is supposed to work only with the fixed denomination GCs, and not the variable load cards.

    Reply
    1. Grant

      Thanks for the data point. There are many things wrong with the gift card promo, so I’m not surprised the system has more holes in it. Have a great weekend!

      Reply
    1. Grant

      Thanks for the data point Mohammad, did you get 2 coupons or only 1 $5 off coupon? I bought 2 $500 gift cards today (separate transactions) but the coupon printer was jammed so the coupons didn’t print. After going to the customer service desk, they were able to print out the missing coupons for me :)

      Reply
  17. Simon

    I tried to buy at money order at USPS using the Visa gift card this morning, and was unsuccessful. I then headed to Walmart and bought a money order there.

    Anyone had success buying a money order at USPS with these gift cards?

    Reply
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  19. Trevor

    Last night, I went to Harris Teeter (local chain owned by Kroger) in Northern VA to give this a try. The GiftCardMall display was cleaned out of all Visa/MC gift cards but I found one mixed in with other cards.

    The purchase wouldn’t go through however and I was told by the manager that it was because they’re pulling all of these cards. I’ll try another location but it seems like a system thing.

    If so, it’s unfortunate because I don’t think we have other Kroger owned chains up here.

    Reply
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