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Update: One or more card offers in this post are no longer available. Check our Hot Deals for the latest offers.
Update: Frequent Miler reports Apple Pay has added “excludes gift cards” to this promotion. But I don’t know if they can enforce it. Please share in the comments if you receive 10% back for gift card purchases!
Update: Thanks to Million Mile Secrets reader Gracie for letting us know yesterday’s iOS update to the Apple Watch has been delayed. You can NOT currently use Apple Pay with Discover on the Apple Watch!
I wrote about how you can earn up to $2,000+ in cash back by using your Discover it Cash Back or Discover it Miles card with Apple Pay. This is an amazing deal!
But some folks are feeling left out because they don’t have a mobile device that works with Apple Pay.
Let’s take a look at how you can take advantage of the Discover & Apple Pay deal, even if you don’t own a mobile device that works with Apple Pay!
What’s the Deal?
Link: Discover it Cash Back
Link: Discover it® Miles
You can earn 10% cash back when you use Discover it Cash Back and Discover it Miles card with Apple Pay to make in-store purchases. This deal is good on up to $10,000 in spending through December 31, 2015.
Plus, if you’re a new cardholder (or you’ve previously registered), the cash back you earn will be DOUBLED at the end of your 1st 12 billing cycles.
Here’s a look at how much cash back you can earn on this deal with each card:
- 22% cash back on regular purchases with the Discover it Cash Back card (1% cash back + 10% bonus = 11%, doubled after 12 billing cycles)
- 23% back on regular purchases with the Discover it Miles card (1.5% back + 10% bonus = 11.5%, doubled after 12 billing cycles)
- 30% cash back on up to $1,500 in spending per quarter in bonus categories with the Discover it Cash Back (5% cash back + 10% bonus = 15%, doubled after 12 billing cycles)
But Apple Pay only works with the certain devices.
To meet the $10,000 limit quickly, you can purchase PIN-enabled Visa or MasterCard gift cards at places like Staples or the Safeway and use them to fund your AMEX Prepaid account.
You’ll have to pay ~$4 to ~$7 per gift card, but it’s well worth it!
How to Get This Deal If You Don’t Have an Apple Pay Device
But even if you have don’t have an Apple mobile device or you have an older phone like the iPhone 5, there are still some ways you may be able to earn up to $2,000+ in cash back with your Discover it Cash Back or Discover it Miles card!
Note: It’s worth checking with your current wireless provider to see if they offer any incentives or subsidies for a new iPhone. Sometimes you can get a deal if you sign-up for a new contract.
And it’s worth considering a used iPhone 6. The new iPhone 6s comes out later this month, so you might see lots of used iPhone 6’s for sale on eBay in the near future!
1. Borrow One
If a close friend or family member has a qualifying iPhone 6 or Apple Watch you could ask to borrow it. Go shopping together if they don’t want their pricey device to leave their hands.
2. Add an Authorized User
Spending by additional users on your account also counts towards the Apple Pay bonus. So you could give trusted friends or family members authorized user cards to earn 22% to 30% cash back on their Apple Pay purchases.
3. Buy 1 and Return It Later
Another option is to visit an Apple Store near you and purchase an iPhone or Apple Watch that you want to try out for this promotion.
Apple Pay with Apple Watch only works if you also have an iPhone 5 or 6. So if you already have an iPhone 5, you could set up Apple Pay, pair an Apple Watch with your phone, then use the Apple Watch for in-store purchases.
Apple has a 14-day return policy on its iPhones, Apple Watches, and other products.
A friend was recently in the Apple Store for repairs on her laptop and asked about buying an iPad to use for the week while her laptop was out of commission. And it turns out they actually encourage folks to do this because they feel if you try it out, you’ll likely decide you want to keep it!
But there are some things you should keep in mind:
- You break it, you buy it – You will won’t receive a refund if the device is damaged in any way, so be very careful
- You don’t need a wireless plan – You’ll need Wi-Fi to configure Apple Pay on your device and add your Discover card. But once it’s set up, you do NOT need wireless or Wi-Fi access to make purchases.
This could even work for folks who plan on buying or upgrading to a new iPhone or Apple Watch anyway.
For example, let’s say you have an Android phone and plan to switch to the new iPhone 6S. You could:
- Purchase an Apple Watch
- Find a trusted friend or family member with an iPhone 5 or 6, and set-up Apple Pay with your Discover it Cash Back or Discover it Miles card on their phone (if they have an iPhone 6, you could even skip the Apple Watch step)
- Use the Apple Watch or your friend’s iPhone 6 to buy your new iPhone with Apple Pay, so you can save up to 23%!
- Return the Apple Watch for a full refund (if required)
Again, folks with an iPhone 5 could buy the Apple Watch and set-up the 2 devices with Apple Pay and Discover. Then go on 14-day shopping spree that might include buying PIN-enabled Visa & MasterCard gift cards in stores like Staples that accept Apple Pay. Then return the Apple Watch.
After returning the watch they’d load the gift cards onto their Bluebird, Serve, or Target Prepaid REDcard.
But only do what you feel comfortable with!
If you have a Discover it Cash Back or Discover it Miles card, you can save Big Money with Apple Pay! Through December 31, 2015, you can earn as much as 22% to 30% cash back (on up to $10,000 in spending) for in-store purchases using Apple Pay.
And if you don’t have the newer Apple devices that support Apple Pay, there are still ways you can get in on this offer including:
- Borrow 1 from a friend
- Add a trusted person with a qualifying iPhone or Apple Watch as an authorized user on your Discover card and let them do the spending
- Buy an Apple device for a trial period to make your purchases and then return it within 14 days
This is an incredible deal and you shouldn’t miss out just because you don’t have the latest Apple gadget!
Let me know in the comments if you try any of these methods. Or have other tricks to share!