My Top 3 Lazy Ways to Manufacture Spend and Earn Free Points

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If you’re like me, you simply don’t have enough time to drive all over the place to manufacture spend or are just simply lazy. Many times I am only actively manufacture spending when I have multiple minimum spend requirements to fulfill.  I really dislike going to Walmart to load prepaid cards or drive all over the place to look for certain mall gift cards.  Thus, I stick with my usually top 3 lazy ways to manufacture spend.

My Top 3 Lazy Ways to Manufacture Spend

1. Amazon Payments – This is probably the laziest, but most efficient way to manufacture spend or meet your minimum spending requirements.  I’ve talked about applying for credit cards towards the end of the month, so you can potentially manufacture spend $4,000 in 3 months.  Also, if you have a 3rd person you can transfer from person A to B to C and do $2,000 a month. 

2. AMEX ServeI recently converted my AMEX Bluebird credit card to AMEX Serve because AMEX Serve allows you to load your account up to $1,000 per month in $200 increments with any credit card.  I was not charged a cash advance fee using my Barclaycard Arrival. Any credit card should work, but do not use an AMEX credit card because you won’t earn points on it or a Citicard (potential cash advance fees).  Make sure you call to verify your credit card you use because AMEX Serve requires you to verify your credit card.  

3. Kiva Payments – I sometimes buy AMEX gift cards through BigCrumbs (currently 3% cash back) and use the AMEX gift card to loan money to people on Kiva.  This does require floating some money around, but if I use my Barclaycard Arrival to buy the AMEX gift card (earning 3% cash back), I can earn about 5% cash back for a 6 month loan.  That’s a pretty decent return rate considering how low interest rates are nowadays.

I occasionally do other methods to manufacture spend, but I really like to just do everything without leaving the house.  By doing so, it keeps me relatively sane in this world of credit card points and miles.  I know most of my readers have a full-time job and don’t have time to drive all over the place. I would say Amazon Payments and AMEX Serve are must-do methods.  I wouldn’t do Kiva unless you could afford floating some funds around, but my repayment rate is still 100% today.

15 comments for “My Top 3 Lazy Ways to Manufacture Spend and Earn Free Points

  1. June 26, 2014 at 5:51 am

    I can confirm using a Citi Hilton Reserve card (to hit the $10k for a free weekend night) to load Serve online DOES NOT result in a cash advance fee.

    • June 26, 2014 at 8:52 am

      Great! I did not expect a cash advance fee from citi but I’m just being extra careful with my advice.

      • June 26, 2014 at 8:56 am

        Agreed Citi is notorious for them with many other things – I was pleasantly surprised when it went through 🙂

  2. Matt
    June 26, 2014 at 11:32 am

    Unfortunately, Barclay’s portal no longer lists AMX Gift Cards.

    • RJ
      June 27, 2014 at 10:34 pm

      He was referring to BigCrumbs portal using Barclaycard. 3% for portal + 2% Barclaycard

    • June 28, 2014 at 12:30 pm

      I know… I usually use bigcrumbs. It’s very reliable

  3. Nicesharky
    June 28, 2014 at 6:45 pm

    What is the best way to withdraw funds from Kiva once the loans are repaid? It appears all fund have to go to Paypal. Is paypal OK with pulling cash out on regular basis?

    • Jonathan
      July 1, 2014 at 9:02 am

      I think you get loan repayments on the 15th of every month. Whenever I get the alert email saying that I have money repaid in the account, I usually log on and withdraw the full amount to Paypal. After Paypal gets it, I withdraw the full amount to my bank account. I have done this for the last 12 months, no problem at all.

      • July 1, 2014 at 10:03 am

        Good to know.

      • Nicesharky
        July 2, 2014 at 12:44 am

        Thanks! I’ll work that into my routine. Cheers!

  4. Mark
    July 3, 2014 at 12:37 pm

    Every time I withdrawal from Kiva a live person has to confirm the withdrawal (the person sends me an email) and it takes at least a week to go PayPal. They say it is to prevent fraud but it seems to me they are trying to guilt people into reinvesting their repayments! Anyone else have this issue?

    • Jonathan
      July 3, 2014 at 1:10 pm

      That’s never happened to me. I’m close to 150 loans and not once have I ever talked to a live person when withdrawing my funds.

  5. Mark
    July 8, 2014 at 6:40 am

    I’ve never had to “talk” with a live person but a live person definitely sends me an email and processes the withdrawal manually each time.

  6. JACK
    November 15, 2015 at 7:18 pm

    I agree. I like the MS u can do without leaving home….im not in the mood of going to store #1, buying Cards, going to WM (or wherever), to beg them to load Serve with Said Cards, hoping the 19 Year old Cashier cooperates, stand on 1 foot, hop 3 Times backwards, drive here, drive there, etc, etc.. I just have my wife bill me through Square, and vice versa. Literally do the whole thing from our living room.
    I do Square, and Serve loading with Amex. Any other ideas? Am. Payments no longer work.

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