Cashing out MasterCard gift cards via Amazon Payments

Last month we wrote about the Staples and Amex promo in which you could earn Ultimate Reward points, a $25 Amex statement credit, and make a small profit. You can refer to the original promotion in this prior post.

The residual product of that promotion was $400 in MasterCard prepaid cards that would take me a while to clear out, so rather than use them over the next month or so and carrying them around in my wallet, I used Amazon Payments to cash the cards out immediately.

The first step in using the gift cards as a credit card is to register them online at Just enter your gift card number, security code in the back, captcha image, and Log in:

CaptchaEnter your personal information (name, address, etc), and you’re ready to use the card online.

Then log in to Amazon Payments ( and go to “Send Money”:

AmazonOn the next screen, enter the email address of the person you’re sending money to, amount, and description (optional). In my case, I entered $200 as I wanted to clear out the gift card completely.

AmazonOn the next screen, you will need to select the link “Add a credit card”, since your gift card won’t be registered with them.

AmazonAmazon Payments has a small glitch, in that once you enter a new credit card, you will lose the payee info and will have to start all over again and retype the info. It will take a couple of extra steps. To avoid this, you can go directly to your account profile and add the card there first and then do the payment, but either way it will take a few extra clicks.

Once you enter the payee and amount info, select the card on the drop down menu on the prior screen shot (only the last 4 digits will display, so make sure you select your gift card), and go to the next screen and confirm payment.

That’s it. The money is transferred, and your new gift card balance is zero. In the interest of flying under the radar, I recommend doing one gift card per day, and don’t fund and drain the recipient account immediately. Wait a day or two, and don’t delete the gift card from your account right away.


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8 Responses to Cashing out MasterCard gift cards via Amazon Payments

  1. Jerry Mandel says:

    Way too much effort above. Call or go on website to get a PIN to convert gift cards to debit cards. Buy money orders at Walmart. (USPS MOs cost more.) Deposit MOs in bank to pay off the credit card bill.

    • travelguys says:

      Jerry, your method works too, but that method is not for me. Registering the cards online, then going to AP, adding them and paying my wife with them takes me a good 5 minutes, and it’s free. I don’t see how getting in my car and driving to Walmart and standing in line, paying a money order fee, then driving to the bank is less complicated than doing everything without having to leave my house. Plus, if you’re buying money orders with frequency, you better be depositing them with a bank you don’t care about. Banks don’t like seeing money orders constantly being deposited in your account. They raise questions because they are used by many people for money laundering. Deposit enough money orders on your account and risk getting your account closed and the bank stopping doing business with you for good. That’s why I personally don’t favor this method.

      • Jerry Mandel says:

        I see your point about what works for you. In my case, we shop at a nearby Kroger all the time and I charge the $500 US Bank gift cards there. At home, I telephone to get a PIN. We shop often at a nearby Walmart which is across the street from my Bank Of America branch. A $1,000 MO costs 68c (paid separately). Amazon requires two (2) persons with separate accounts and there are limits on transactions. And what must your wife then do with her Amazon payments? Are they in your bank account? B of A is quite happy with my deposits. So, I can, if convenient, do SAME DAY recycling of funds. My point is that my method may be convenient and fast for some of your readers.

        • travelguys says:

          Jerry, definitely. I think it’s good for readers to know all methods and choose what works for them. Thanks for posting. I have a separate bank account for my wife that she had from her single days and kept just for that. I take them into her bank account. And yes, I have used the MO method but only to supplement spending if I need higher spend.

          • Nancy says:

            so I take it you can’t send an Amazon payment to yourself. There’s no spouse in my picture.

          • travelguys says:

            Nancy, the guys on Flyertalk have come up with all kinds of ways of doing things and there might be a way, but that might involve setting up fake accounts and doing things I’m not comfortable with doing so I don’t recommend going that route as you could have your account shut down. If you don’t have anyone you can trust with Amazon, I would give Walmart another try and if that doesn’t work I would just use the gift cards for daily expenses if that’s your only option left.

  2. JJ says:

    I don’t get why the first step (mygiftcardsite) is part of this as all.

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