About 2 weeks ago, we saw an article on Frequent Miler about a “new business” promotion from Plastiq. Details were a little vague, but they seemed interesting to us. The gist of the deal was that, if we established a new business account with Plastiq using a referral link, we could earn 50,000 Plastiq fee-free dollars (FFDs) if we used Plastiq to make $50,000 in payments by November 30, 2019. We’d also receive an additional 5,000 FFDs at some unspecified time.
This caught our attention. We had some tax payments coming due that we could use for several thousand dollars in payments. We had a decent stack of gift cards that we could use to make payments on Plastiq. And, we had a few other real-life payments to make where Plastiq could help us. Spending $50,000 via Plastiq in a little over a month was going to be a challenge (especially since we’ll be out of the country for 10 days in the middle of November), but we thought we could give it a go.
So, we signed up for the deal, and we’re in the midst of working through the spend. Along the way, we learned a lot of details about the deal that were otherwise unavailable, and have generally been positive. It may be too late for most people to do the $50k spend by the end of November now, but we wanted to publish this article so that people can either take advantage of the current offer, or at least have a better understanding of the terms of similar deals that Plastiq may offer in the future (and they seem to be pretty good about offering these “new business” deals semi-regularly).
Information About the Deal
We signed up for the deal using my personal information and the business information for a property management company that we own. The business is a properly registered LLC. This business has not had a Plastiq account before, but I have had a personal Plastiq account for many years that I have also used to make payments on behalf of a different business that I own.
Existing Personal Account
The first thing I was concerned about was whether my existing account would disqualify us from the “new business” offer. It did not.
During sign-up, we provided the legal name and address of the business, but that’s about all. Plastiq did not ask any follow-up questions about the business. Nor did Plastiq express any concern about my pre-existing personal account, so I assume that this was not a problem. To be clear, I was fully prepared to be completely open about the situation if Plastiq had questions, and if we didn’t meet the criteria for the “new business” promotion, we would have accepted that result with no problems.
Personal Verification Process
Personal verification was more stringent – Plastiq required a copy of a photo ID and a picture of myself holding my photo ID. I used my passport for this purpose. Plastiq verified me. Although this was a cumbersome process, we welcome it if it prevents fraud and allows Plastiq to continue to provide the services and offers that it does.
Sign-Up Using Referral Link
I believe that using a referral link was necessary for this deal to work. We didn’t know this at the time we signed up, but it’s our understanding that the referring person gets a very generous bonus if the new business completes the offer – 25,000 FFDs. If the referring person uses the 25,000 FFDs to make payments where Plastiq otherwise would have charged a 2.5% fee, the referral bonus would be worth $625. That’s really a large bonus!
We used Frequent Miler’s referral link, because we saw their article about the promotion first. We later saw an article by Robert at Milenomics that was actually dated earlier than the Frequent Miler article. We’ll include links to both of their articles here, which contain referral links. We’ll list the Milenomics article first, since we didn’t use their link but they published first – but we’re fully on board with supporting either of them:
- Milenomics: Earn 55,000 Fee-Free Dollars for Making $50,000 in Payments from a New Plastiq Business Account (October 21, 2019)
- Frequent Miler: Plastiq promo: send $50K in payments, get 50K in fee-free dollars (new business customers only) (October 23, 2019)
After Sign-Up – Making Sure the Promo Was Attached
Once we signed up, we began to have concerns about whether the promotion had been properly attached to our account. There had not been any landing page for the promotion, and there was no confirmation that the promotion was attached. To the contrary, when we looked at the new Plastiq account, all we could see was a notation that a promo code had been attached and that we would earn 500 FFDs after we spend $500 in the new account. That wasn’t the deal we expected at all!
We commented back to Frequent Miler explaining the issue and asking if they had any further information. Greg and Nick were responsive, but they didn’t have any answers and it seemed that Plastiq wasn’t communicating with them.
The next morning, we used Plastiq’s online chat feature to contact them. The agent was friendly, but they really couldn’t provide any answers. They told us they’d let the Plastiq sales team know and would have them call me.
I never received a call from Plastiq. Unknown to me, though, a Plastiq sales rep had responded to me via email. Unfortunately, his email went into my junk folder. I didn’t discover it until the next day, after I had initiated a second chat session (and grown increasingly concerned that the deal wasn’t going to work at all; I was also worried that the clock was ticking on my already narrow time window to make $50k in payments!).
Once I discovered the email from the Plastiq sales rep, things went smoothly. The Plastiq agent confirmed that the promotion was attached to our account and provided us with some very important details about the promotion that we’ll cover next.
Importantly, it appears that you will need to communicate directly with a Plastiq sales agent, either by phone or by email, in order to get the promotion attached. And, you may have to initiate this contact. This process will put eyes on you and the account, so don’t do this unless you’re a legitimate user.
Details of the Promotion
The details of the promotion – and they’re favorable to the new business are:
- The first 5,000 in FFDs are awarded after sign-up and verification are successfully completed
- Use Plastiq to make $50,000 in payments by November 30, 2019 (about 5 weeks after sign-up in our case), and you’ll receive 50,000 FFDs
- It’s not entirely clear when the 50k FFDs will be put into your account, but we have observed that Plastiq has usually been pretty quick and reliable with depositing FFDs once they have been earned
- All payments made using Plastiq count toward the $50k threshold – including credit-funded payments with a 2.5% fee, debit-funded payments with a 1% fee, and payments that use FFDs
- This is crucial and incredibly favorable to the new business
- Some Plastiq promotions to earn FFDs have required that the payments had to be credit-funded payments with a 2.5% fee in order to qualify toward the spend requirement – it’s great that this is not the case for this “new business” promotion
- We also received an additional 500 FFDs after we made our first $500 in payments (that is, the “normal” sign-up bonus), bringing our total FFDs from this deal to 55,500 (assuming that we satisfy the $50k requirement)
On the third point above, that all payments count toward the $50k spend requirement, here is the exact wording of the exchange that we had with the Plastiq agent:
- Me: I just wanted to make sure I understand how the  promo works in terms of making $50k [in] payments. Do they all have to be 2.5% payments, or do 1% debit payments and/or payments using the 5k FFDs also count toward the $50k?
- Plastiq Agent: All payments apply to reach the 50k in FFD. Let me know how I can help.
Quick Analysis of the Economics of the Promotion
Most-expensive-case scenario here would be that you use your initial 5,000 FFDs to make $5,000 in payments and $45,000 more in payments at a 2.5% fee. That would cost you $1,125 in fees. Then, you’d be able to make your next $50,000 in payments fee-free. Total, $100k in payments for $1,125 in fees, for an overall fee percentage of 1.125% for each dollar spent.
We suspect that you have plenty of credit cards in your wallet where you can earn far more than 1.125% in rewards for each dollar spent!
Beyond that, if you can make some of the first $50k in payments using cards that process as debit with a 1% fee, then you can knock your effective cost percentage down even further.
(Forgive us, we’re intentionally being a bit vague here. But if you read our MS DPs series from a couple of months ago, you can get some more specific information. Go to the “Middle Age Miles Posts by Category” on the right sidebar, use the drop-down menu, and scroll down to the “Manufactured Spend” category. You might also remember from that series that certain Mastercard gift cards (MCGCs) can be used to make payments on credit card bills through Plastiq, which can be extremely helpful in satisfying the $50k spend requirement.)
Conclusion and Wrap-Up
We’re excited about doing this Plastiq promotion and have our fingers crossed that we can complete it successfully before the end of November. We’re about halfway to the $50k spend requirement so far. But the sledding gets a little tougher from here on out, as we’ve already made the “easiest” bigger-dollar tax payments.
We hope the details we’ve provided here are helpful to anyone doing this promotion or subsequent similar Plastiq deals. We strongly recommend that, as soon as you enroll, you reach out to Plastiq and communicate with a sales agent to make sure your promotion is properly attached. They’ll also be able to answer any questions you have. We found the Plastiq sales agent to be very responsive and helpful.
What do you think of this Plastiq promotion? Have you had experiences with this particular promotion or Plastiq in general that provide data points that either support our contradict ours? Please let us know in the Comments!
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