Some credit card companies will forgive a bill as long as it has a small balance. If your statement shows just 99 cents or less, the bank will consider it too small to ask for payment. In many cases, the charge usually appears on the bill as a “credit adjustment” or something similar. Through this loophole, I have recently been able to get some free Amazon gift card reload, and in this post I will share what I learned.
I first discovered this method on Reddit and found some data points on Doctor of Credit. However, I thought this would take too much time for only $2-3 credit. Now that I own several credit cards from companies that waive small balances, I have no choice, I can’t pass it up. Free money is free money!
Why Would You Want to Do This?
Aside from the fact that you get free money, consider a credit card you don’t use all that much, like an airline credit card. You are not traveling every month. When you do not use your credit card for a certain period of time, some credit card companies may deactivate your account.
Alternatively, perhaps there is a credit card you don’t need anymore, but you don’t want to close the account. By charging a small amount each month, you are keeping the credit line active and gaining some free bucks along the way. As far as I have seen, this trick does not affect your credit score.
You can reload your Amazon gift card for as little as 50 cents and the funds are immediately credited to your account. That’s why most people use Amazon gift card reloads when they want to take advantage of small balance waivers. If you want to try this with any other online retailer, that is also fine.
How to Get Started?
Before you try this, figure out which bank actually issues this credit from this list. I am choosing to stick with the big banks and those that have enough reports to make it worthwhile for me to experiment. Another thing you should do before you try is to cancel your auto-pay setup. This is because when the due date arrives, the bank will take the payment from your account. It happened to me during this experiment.
Below are the credit card issuers I have used to get free Amazon gift card credit:
- Barclays – forgives balance $1 or less
- Capital One – forgives balance $1 or less
Will try these issuers next month as reports are a bit unclear:
- U.S. Banks – forgives balance $1 or less
- Wells Fargo – forgives $2 or less
If you haven’t previously done so, add the credit cards you want to use to reload your Amazon account. To do this, go to your Amazon Wallet > Add a payment method.
Then go to Amazon Reload, enter 99 cents in the amount box and click on Buy Now.
On the next screen, select your payment method and place the order. For my example screenshot below, I used Barclays View Mastercard (Uber Card previously).
The charge will show up on your account as pending right away. When your statement closing date comes up, it will show up as a “BALANCE ADJUSTMENT” on your Barclays card.
My charge was credited after 7 days after reloading, as you can see in the screenshot above. The adjustment will depend on your statement closing date.
Capital One calls it “CHARGE ADJUSTMENT” on their statement, screenshot above.
Wells Fargo waives up to a $2.00 charge on the account adjustment, which appears on the statement as “ACCOUNT ADJUSTMENT.”
I reloaded using 11 credit cards, five of which were mine and five were my wife’s. You can reload your Amazon gift balance using all your applicable credit cards on the same day. But I wanted to make sure Amazon didn’t lock my account.
As you can see, this process is straightforward but a bit cumbersome. You should bookmark the Amazon Reload link and confirm you are choosing the correct card before placing the gift card reload order. There is a script created by a Redditor to automate this process. However, If you are not a computer expert or a programmer, this may seem complicated.
I set a calendar reminder to reload my Amazon gift card balance every month. Also, since Amazon does not allow you to label your credit card, I suggest you keep a spreadsheet or note with the credit card’s name and issuer. Trust me, this will make the process much smoother.
If you spend a lot of money at Amazon and your credit card does have this feature, it’s definitely worth a shot to get some free Amazon gift cards. Between this gift card reload method and Amazon Shopper Panel, you can get free $20-$30 in Amazon gift cards every month.
Featured image via Christian Wiediger/ UnsplashUpdate 06/10/2022: Added Wells Fargo screenshot and details.