Today Lucky writes about whether the mint “game” is worthwhile and instead of hijacking his comments with a long post I figured I’d post my response here.
I have not, and will not participate in the mint game. Why? Well, I like my bank. I get 4.25% APR on my checking account. To some that might scream “sweet! interest on the float too!” but I would hate to kill that gravy train. They only have 4 branches so if I’m depositing $1000 in coins every 10 days that is hard to shuffle. If I still had an account at the big banks in Charlotte maybe I would. If I could have the coins shipped directly to ING Direct or Schwab Bank for deposit maybe I would. Since I’d have to take time out of my busy weekend (since I’m back to traveling Monday-Friday) and wake up early on Saturday after getting in at midnight I prefer not to. I don’t even know if my bank has weekend hours so I’d either sit on my coins for a while, deposit them into my husband’s account at one of the big banks, or just not play the game.
For those who don’t know what the mint game is (since I’ve never talked about it) I’ll explain briefly. The US Mint wants to get people to use the $1 coins. To encourage this they are selling $1 coins with free shipping so it’s pretty much a cash advance without actually posting to your credit card as such. This means you get money at face value and get points/miles for it if you use a points/miles credit card. People went hog wild initially so credit card companies and the mint got suspicious. The rules changed limiting the number that an individual can purchase at a time. the website also states: “The immediate bank deposit of $1 coins ordered through this program does not result in their introduction into circulation and, therefore, does not comply with the intended purpose of the program.” You can order up to 4 boxes ($250×4=$1000) every 10 days.
So if you use a lot of cash anyway and can actually use these coins and use other money to pay your credit card, good for you. If you are getting these coins to deposit and pay the credit card then good for you too. I just don’t have time.