Tag Archives: Gift Cards

Work from Home Diary 2: Afternoon Walks & Restaurant Gift Cards

Good morning everyone, happy Friday.  I started sharing my thoughts regarding working from home in a series of Work from Home Diary posts.  Feel free to share your work from home feelings in the comments section below.  For today’s update, I will share what it’s been like to work from home this week.  As I mentioned yesterday, this is Laura’s spring break week.  Instead of spending time driving around Ireland or suntanning in Kauai, we are both spending most of our time inside our home.  My work from home set up is upstairs in our guest room / home office and Laura’s work from home set up is downstairs on our den table.  It’s nice that we have our own spaces to work (and listen to music or watch TV).

As an assistant principal, Laura is used to waking up early and leaving early for work.  Now that we are both working from home, we can sleep in a little later, eat breakfast together, and watch morning news before starting our work.  I’m used to eating lunch around 11:30-12pm, so we both take a break, make lunch (or reheat leftovers) and relax for a few minutes.  In the early afternoon, if the weather is nice/decent, we try to go for a 2-3 mile walk around our city to stretch our legs and talk about work and life.  There are not many people outside, but we do see a few others walking and riding bikes. Continue reading

My Travel Philosophy for Redeeming Miles vs. Paying Cash for Flights (w/ Account Balances as of March 2020)

Good morning everyone, happy Friday!  I just finished listening to the Miles to Memories podcast (latest episode) and enjoyed listening to them talk about Disney when they redeem miles vs. pay cash for flights.  I don’t have a hard and fast rule that I live by, so I thought it would be fun to share my travel philosophy of when I redeem miles vs. pay cash for flights.  I specifically mention flights because I plan to write a similar article about hotels and didn’t want to make this article too long.  Lastly, when I use the word cash, that could mean paying for the flight with a credit card, or paying with an airline gift card, or using credit card rewards to pay for the flight – basically anything other than booking an award ticket with airline miles.

I also think it is important to share how many credit card reward points I have, since my thinking would be much different if I had 1,000 Chase Ultimate Reward Points vs. 1 million Chase Ultimate Reward Points.  With that said, here are my transferable points balances, as of March 2020, from smallest to largest:

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How to Cancel BJ’s Wholesale Club Easy Renewal (Cancel Membership)

Good afternoon everyone.  Yesterday, I received an email from BJ’s Wholesale Club that my membership was going to renew on April 1, 2020.  I don’t live near a BJ’s Wholesale Club and only signed up for the $10 online membership to buy gift cards, but I do not do gift card reselling anymore and haven’t bought anything from BJ’s Wholesale Club in 6+ months.  Unfortunately, the process to cancel my membership is not very simple.  Here are the steps I went through to cancel my membership.

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Have You Read My Top 10 Blog Posts from 2019?

Good morning everyone, long time no blog.  I hope you all had a great holiday season and have exciting plans for New Years.  Quick update from me: Laura and I drove down to Orange County from the Bay Area for Christmas and then we *tried* to drive back up to the Bay Area on December 26, but since the Grapevine (on the 5 Freeway) was closed due to snow, we only made it half way up on the 101 Freeway.  We stopped in Santa Maria (near San Luis Obispo) for 1 night (shout out to the Holiday Inn Express Santa Maria for 20K IHG Points) and then we drove up the rest of the way on December 27 for a second Christmas with Laura’s family.  Then on Saturday morning, we flew to Las Vegas to visit my new niece (born on December 21).  On Sunday night, after a nice relaxing dinner at the LAS Centurion Lounge, we had a minor weather delay on our return flight to SFO, followed by sitting on our United flight for 90 minutes as we waited for an open gate (half of SFO is United, so there should be an open gate…).  We are glad to be back home and I have a few blog posts in the pipeline.

For today’s post, I will list my top 10 most read blog posts written in 2019 along with the top 10 posts of the year (regardless of the year they were written).  By the way, here are the most popular posts from 2018, 2017, and 2016. Continue reading

Drop App Devaluation: Changes to Gift Card Redemptions (Must Shop through App)

Updated at 2:10pm PT on 11/14: After I made a $1 Groupon purchase through Drop, I earned Drop Points and unlocked the gift card redemptions.  Scroll to the bottom of the post for more info.


Good morning everyone.  I checked my Drop account yesterday and noticed a change to the Redeem Rewards screen.  Listed at the top of the screen is a message regarding $5-$25 gift cards.  I clicked on the message and learned that rewards between $2 and $25 are locked unless you make a purchase with the Drop app.  I currently only earn Drop points when I make purchases with my linked credit cards.  This is bad news for users who do not use the Drop app for shopping, but only for card linked purchases.

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