Meet $2000 in Credit Card Minimum Spend, Cheap and Easy

If you have an Android phone or a compatible tablet such as Google Nexus 7, you can use the Google Wallet App with a virtual prepaid card that can be funded with any credit card.

I do not know whether Citbank would consider this a cash advance, they often consider lots of things cash advances, so absent evidence to the contrary I would avoid using Citibank cards for this.

The cool thing about this, and why it’s a great very limited time opportunity is that the Google prepaid card is being discontinued and balances remaining on your card can be returned to you by check.

You have to reload the card by September 17, and the card will hold up to $8000. But there appears to be a limit of $500 per day and $2000 per month in funding that you can add to the card, so with only 4-5 days left this appears to only offer the opportunity to top off with $2000. And you’ll have to verify your identity with them to do this.

The prepaid card will be discontinued October 17. And when you request a check for the return of your balance on the card at that time it may take up to 8 weeks to receive. So you’ll be floating the funds for three months, not everyone is in a position to do that.

Expect to pay a $2 monthly maintenance fee for 30 days of inactivity on the card, and a $5 fee for the balance refund check. So $7 for $2000 in spending on your preferred credit card, great for meeting minimum spend requirements if you are in a position to pay off the cards with cash and wait to get the money back.

So short-term opportunity to download the Google Wallet app, use their prepaid card, and get the money back.

(HT: Reader Mike L. channeling this Flyertalk post)

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. I can’t find google wallet application on my android mobile phone. I use research “google wallet” on play store. There is no google wallet already.

  2. It’s a very specific list of phones that are eligible and only on specific carriers. This is pretty limited use. Per the linked FT thread, it’s these phone/carrier combos:

    •Samsung Nexus S on Sprint
    •Samsung Galaxy Nexus on Sprint
    •Samsung Galaxy Nexus GSM/HSPA+ (available for purchase on Google Play)
    •Samsung Galaxy S3 on Sprint
    •LG Viper™ 4G LTE on Sprint
    •LG Optimus Elite™ on Sprint and Virgin Mobile
    •HTC EVO 4G LTE on Sprint
    •Asus Nexus 7 Tablet (WiFi only) (available for purchase on Google Play)

  3. I have the Galaxy S3 on AT&T, which is not “compatible”. Since the Sprint version is okay, I guess it’s AT&T that blocks this app for me. Thanks, AT&T!

  4. FYI if your carrier is blocking it, but download marketenabler from the market and that will let you spoof a different carrier

  5. If I have a trusted friend with the phone is it possible to buy a prepaid card using my CC in my name; and if so, is it possible to get the rebate processed to my address (so that my friend just has to not spend it for this to work)?

  6. For us iPhoners, Is it possible to just get the prepaid card online on the website without downloading the wallet app and let it be until asking for the balance back?

  7. If you have an NFC-enabled phone but your carrier blocks the Google Wallet app from Android market, you can download it here:

    Has anybody gotten past the “verify identity” page of this process? After my first two loads, GW starts asking for an SSN and DOB before I can add more funds, but entering these just leads to a page that says “verify identity” (nothing else) and nothing happens (same error when trying again).

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