Experimenting with my Office Max Rewards

I’m a big fan of reward programs and I especially love Office Max’s program: MaxPerks Rewards. Anybody can sign-up for free, you don’t actually have to own a business or anything (they also have a separate one for teachers).

The coolest thing about their program is that they often offer FREE items after the rewards. For example, buy product X for $9.99 and get back 100% in MaxPerks rewards (limit 3). Easy peasy if you can wait around 4-8 weeks for your reward to credit to your account. Once the reward is credited to your MaxPerks account, you can either use it online, in-store or for phone orders.

So, last month I had some rewards that were about to expire but nothing I really needed to use them on. After pondering it for a while, I decided this could make for an interesting experiment. I had $58.96 in MaxPerks rewards that were about to expire, but there was only 1 item available for 100% back after the rewards with a limit of 3.

That certainly wouldn’t be enough to transfer all of my rewards back to me, but I got lucky. They had some sort of member-appreciation thing going on where you could earn 20% back on your purchase. Of course I used Cash-back Shopping to earn money back on the purchase as well. Here’s how it all went down:

3 Sharpie Fine Black markers 12 pack $8.29 each- get back 100% in MaxPerks rewards (limit 3)
HP 901 Tri-color ink cartridge $29.99
Tape for my label maker $7.99

Subtotal: $62.85
Total: $68.00

Paid w/ $58.96 in MaxPerks rewards & $9.04 on my MasterCard

What I expected to get:

$24.87 in rewards from 3 Sharpie items @ 100% back
$7.59 in rewards from other 2 items @ 20% back
Expected total in rewards: $32.46

What I actually got: $20.67 in rewards

WTF right? It doesn’t make any sense to me. If they don’t allow you to earn rewards when you use rewards to purchase the items, then shouldn’t I have received no more than $9.04 (since that’s the non-reward amount I paid)?

If they screwed up and only gave me 20% back on everything, then I only should have gotten $12.57. How does this make sense, I really can’t figure it out. Maybe I should have done this experiment when I could have used my rewards only on the 100% back items. As far as this experiment goes, I can’t exactly tell for sure. Later on, I’ll try again the other way and that should clear things up.


Anybody else try this or know what happened?


PS- Office Max actually has a few good things with 100% back in rewards this week. If you don’t already have an Office MaxPerks account, you can go set one up real quick here. Don’t forget to use Cash-back Shopping to get some money back on your purchases, plus Office Max usually gives you free shipping on orders of $50+.

UPDATE: Last night, I order 2 of the ful Road Manager 26″ Rolling Duffel in red, below. There is a limit of 2 backpacks/bags per person with 100% back in Max Perks rewards; they’re gonna be free after rewards.

This is just until Saturday or until they run out. I went through Shop at Home to earn cash-back (which is currently <as of last night> offering 4% cash-back at Office Max), plus I got free shipping and I used my Best Buy MasterCard and will earn points.

The MaxPerks rewards should appear in my account sometime in September and then I can use them toward my laptop. This is all separate money I’ve had put aside for a new laptop. Since I was going to buy a laptop anyway, I figured it would totally rock to get some free luggage out it. :-)


About Jen Perkins

Likes: saving money, being debt free (aside from our house), zombies, travel, getting money, blogging and dogs. Dislikes: debt, being broke, bunnies, wasting money, not having enough money to travel the world and paying interest. Facebook  ♥  Twitter  ♥  Google+  ♥  RSS


Experimenting with my Office Max Rewards — 2 Comments

  1. The reason why you did not get the expected amount back in rewards is because transactions where you use your your reward dollars do not count towards your MaxPerks reward balance. This is in the documentation printed for the new MaxPerks rollout that the company just recently initiated. I don’t know how they came up with that figure, maybe they took a percentage off depending on the amount you spent in reward dollars, but according to policy, you are not supposed to earn rewards on transactions that you use your reward dollars. Don’t know how they figured the 20$ though.

    • Yeah, I heard they were changing stuff up but haven’t looked into it yet. Still, I don’t get how they figured that number out either, it’s really baffling. Thanks Amber. :-)