Please let me pay for my cookies!

As some of you may recall, I went to my local Chase branch last week to open a checking account to earn 25,000 Continental miles. The debit card that I have to use at least five (or maybe six) times arrived yesterday, and I tried to make six small transactions so that I can fulfill the requirements for the offer.

Well, it’s proving harder than I thought, mainly because I’ve been getting free cookies. You see, yesterday I went to Panera to get a sandwich, which I used my debit card for. Then I went to the bakery counter to buy a cookie. I wanted to pay with my debit card, but they said “don’t worry about it,” as they were almost closing. They kind of know me, so I wasn’t totally surprised. Fine, a free cookie, cool!

Tonight I went to a similar place and made a purchase, and then did the same thing. After I got my order I said “I’d actually like to buy a couple of cookies as well.” The guy goes “sure, but don’t worry about it.” I responded “no, I’d really prefer to pay.” He said “it’s on us, we’re throwing them away otherwise anyway.” I said “no, but really, I’d prefer to pay.” He gave me a confused look, but insisted I not pay.

Stop giving me free cookies! They’re making me gain weight without gaining miles!

About lucky

Ben Schlappig (aka Lucky) is a travel consultant, blogger, and avid points collector. He travels about 400,000 miles a year, primarily using miles and points to fund his first class experiences. He chronicles his adventures, along with industry news, here at One Mile At A Time.

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Comments

  1. It’s that damn German in you. I’m half Mexican – I’ll take any handouts I can get (I know…bad).

  2. I guess you could drive around markets and stores and buy a pack of gum or something at each of them.

    Cookies seem to be Panera’s standard way of addressing issues, everytime they screw up they give me a free cookie.

  3. Why not take the free cookies and make an on-line donation to a charity (for the price you were prepared to pay for the cookie) as a way of a transaction? Or judst hold off until you need to make a small purchase and usethe card then. 5 or 6 transactions is hardly a huge number, and I can’t imagine it’ll take more than a few days to cover them off in the normal course of your spending life.

  4. Go to your local grocery store and buy some Twinkies a couple of times in separate transactions, and you will be one your way.

  5. On your next flight just buy something on board. After all they take credit/debit cards for our convenience. Yeah, right. And don’t forget you can pay for your checked bags on-line. Again, for our convenience. What else do they do for our convenience? I was so pissed I had to pay for a checked bag last year, unavoidable curling equipment, that I paid for it in dollar coins at the airport. Now I’m ranting.

  6. I find the “Self Checkouts” at supermarkets, etc to be perfect for this kind of thing. Works best with no line behind you… I got every penny out of Bank of America’s Keep the change promo in the first 3 months while they match 100% of the change that way…

  7. @Rochester Rich – I’ve twice seen FAs get (jokingly) offended on UA when someone pays with another airline’s card. Besides UA gives you 10 miles/$ if you use a united card for BOB… I guess Lucky could fly continental, but then he should buy the ticket with the card as CO gives you a flat miles bonus for the online purchase w/ card as well as double miles for the cost of the ticket.

  8. They’re smart for not charging you. It probably costs the merchant more to process that transaction than the cost of the cookies you wanted to buy. Besides a free treat every now and then encourages repeat business. Nice to know some people still think outside of the box.

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