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Banks (and credit unions, etc.) that offer high interest typically require the customer to take some kind of action every month, such as performing 10 debit card purchases.

I'm wondering if people have found any way to automate the satisfaction of these requirements, so that I don't have to worry about doing it manually? For example, if there is a cheap product that I want to purchase 10 times per month, is it possible for me to set up a monthly payment for that product so that it can happen automatically? Or do I need to e.g. physically present the card to a cashier to perform a purchase?

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    Internet, cell phone, electric, cable, gym membership, you name it. All of mine are setup for autopay using my debit card as a master card. – AbraCadaver Jan 7 '15 at 18:22
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    Check your bank, but as far as I am aware any non-PIN transaction (where you use the card as a credit card) satisfies the requirement. The bank makes a fee from the merchant for credit card transactions and not PIN based transactions, so that's why the bank has this requirement. – AbraCadaver Jan 7 '15 at 18:55
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    @AbraCadaver Most debit-card-issuing banks don't have the non-PIN requirement on debit cards, just a certain number of debit card transactions in a month/cycle. Issuing banks earn fees from all transactions, credit or debit, chip or swipe, card-present (terminal) or card-not-present (online/phone). However, OP should still check with the bank if recurring payments or subscriptions are considered purchases (e.g. Netflix). – Noah Jan 7 '15 at 22:38
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    @Noah: It's been a while since I looked, but I just did. The first states Debit purchases must be PIN transactions. The second At least 12 debit transactions must be signature-based, not PIN. Go figure. – AbraCadaver Jan 7 '15 at 22:53
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    So to summarize, is it correct to say that if they happen to require PIN transactions, these ones basically can't be automated, whereas if they require credit card transactions then they can? – Mehrdad Jan 7 '15 at 23:28
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As @AbraCadaver said, anything you autopay with your debit card as a CC card "counts".

A small example from my own budget:

  • internet
  • netflix
  • huluplus
  • water
  • trash
  • gas
  • electric
  • cell phone
  • car insurance

Add-in all the stuff you're probably using your debit card for anyway:

  • gas
  • groceries
  • lunch
  • coffee
  • movie tickets

And if you can't hit 10 transaction a month, you're either paying for everything in cash (not a bad plan, btw), or you don't spend much (also not inherently a bad thing).

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    Just realized I never accepted this answer. One thing I want to add for future readers that I figured out works well for me (which works for credit cards too) was public transit. I can just do 10 transactions of small amounts (like a dollar each) online to add credit to my account, then pay the rest I use that month normally. That way I keep getting pretty much all the cash back I would've normally gotten from other cards, while still meeting the minima. – Mehrdad Jan 3 '17 at 4:09

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