Paycheck Chronicles

Membershop Rewards from USAA

I was talking to the USAA rep at SpouseBUZZ Live today, and she mentioned their new online shopping rewards program.  I hadn't heard about it so I took the little card, came home and looked it up.  I'll admit that I'm not exactly sure that I understand all the details, but basically if you are shopping online, and you shop through the USAA Membershop website, you'll earn rewards at a higher rate than you could get if you shop without going through the Membershop website. 

For example, say you are going to buy your child a new winter coat at Lands' End.  If you go through the Membershop website and pay with a non-USAA card, you'll earn a 2% rebate.  If you use a USAA card, you'll earn a 4% rebate.  That's not too shabby!I have used other rewards programs, usually Ebates and MyPoints.  For purposes of comparison, Ebates currently offers 3% back on Lands' End purchases.  MyPoints does not have an affiliate program with Lands' End. 

To compare another site, I checked out Drugstore.com.  Using the USAA card, the rebate is 8%.  Using a non-USAA card through the Membershop site, the rebate is 5%.  The Ebates rebate is 6%.  MyPoints gives you 300 points per purchase, which is worth roughly $2.  For a third comparison, I looked at Ebay.  The USAA Membershop program doesn't work with Ebay, Ebates is 2%, and MyPoints is 2% (with a double bonus in September, making it 4%) in points.  MyPoints accrue to gift card value at around $2 worth of value for every 300 points.

This seems like a nice program to add to your rebate site collection.  If you're not interested in searching around to find the best rate for each individual purchase, I would certainly consider going through the USAA site for online purchases.  If you are using a USAA branded card, it seems to have the best rebate rates available.  Rebates can accrue quickly, especially if you are living overseas or do a lot of online shopping for any other reason.

Now, if anyone has a good way to remember to so my shopping through the rebate website, I would love to hear.  I often forget to go through one of those sites when I do my purchasing and I know that I'm missing out on a lot of rewards because of it. If you have tricks for solving that problem, please let me know!

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