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ink/toner cartridge recycling primer/faq for Office Depot, OfficeMax and Staples (vers. 2013.07.01)

bpvh 13,903 May 24, 2010 at 07:30 AM
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So, the below is what I have worked up so far. This is a work in progress and now I am looking for corrections/input/suggestions.

For example, what other information is wanted or what information included below is not wanted.

UPDATE for 11/05/2013 on the now completed merger and its impact on the rewards programs:
Q: I am a member of your retail loyalty program (Office Depot Rewards and/or OfficeMax MaxPerks). What happens to my rewards?

A: While we work to bring the assets of Office Depot and OfficeMax together, we will continue to provide the benefits and value you've come to enjoy from our existing loyalty programs, Office Depot Rewards and MaxPerks. Until further notice, you will continue to earn and redeem rewards from your existing program(s), as you always have. We expect to announce a combined loyalty program sometime in 2014.

--- http://www.officedepotmaxmerger.com/faq.shtml
--- http://news.officedepot.com/press...ete-merger

========================================


ink/toner cartridge recycling primer/faq for Office Depot, OfficeMax and Staples (vers. 2013.07.01)

  • Office Depot:
    • recycle:
      • value: up to 200 rewards points per cartridge recycled -- see purchase requirement below.
      • limit: 10 per calendar month - no per day restriction
      • type: ink or toner cartridge - all brands - may reject visibly damaged cartridges
    • purchase requirement:
      • to qualify to recycle for a month, a qualified purchase of $10 or more must be made in that month
      • Qualifying purchases exclude taxes; delivery fees; postage stamps; and prepaid gift, debit, phone or services cards; and purchases made with Office Depot Rewards and Merchandise Cards/Certificates.
    • recycling rewards:
      • issued:
        • recycling rewards points are paid out monthly together with purchase (standard and bonus) rewards points in the form of a Rewards Certificate.
        • rewards points are paid out in 1000 point increments
        • 1000 points equals $10
        • Rewards Certificates are made available within 30 days after the end of the month in which the rewards points are earned. To date this has meant sometime in the latter half of the month.
        • unpaid out points carryover from month to month until the end of the quarter when they expire
      • usage: Rewards Certificates may be redeemed on purchases at Office Depot US stores (including Puerto Rico), online or by phone (excluding all gift and prepaid cards)
      • expiration:
        • official: 60 days after the date of issuance
        • effective: the last day of the month 2 months following the month in which they are issued (???)
    • member services:


  • OfficeMax:
    • recycle: (for trial markets see post #595) (for all stores in California and select stores in Denver and Kansas City see post #672)
      • value: up to $2 in rewards per cartridge recycled -- see purchase requirement below
      • limit: 10 per calendar month - no per day restriction
      • type:
        • t&c: any visibly undamaged, originally manufactured, ink/toner cartridges. Remanufactured ink/toner cartridges are not eligible for rewards under the recycling program.
        • Some OM stores may accept remanufacturer cartridges
    • purchase requirement:
      • total recycling reward dollars issued for recycling may not exceed your total MaxPerks program qualified purchase balance.
      • Qualifying purchases are any products or services in our stores, catalogs or web site except for computers, tablets, eReaders, US Postal Stamps, gift cards, general use prepaid cards, phone cards, all products sold by RadioShack Mobile including mobile phones, mobile phone accessories and service plans, purchases with Retail Connect pricing, sales tax and purchases made prior to the date of enrollment, and purchases made with your MaxPerks rewards.
      • recycling and purchases carry over from month to month - expire at calendar year end
    • recycling rewards:
      • issued: monthly with purchase rewards about 15-30 days after month's end on a Rewards Card (unlimited use until funds exhausted or card expired), printable from the rewards site
      • usage: Reward Cards are not redeemable for gift cards, general use pre-paid cards, phone cards and are not redeemable for cash unless otherwise required by law.
        • in-store: t&c state up to three Rewards Cards may be used on a purchase but I used four without the cash register complaining this past June.
        • online: limited to one Reward Card or gift card per purchase.
        • phone: t&c state up to three Rewards Cards may be used on a purchase.
      • expiration:
        • official: 90 days after the date of issuance
        • effective: the last day of the month 3 months following the month in which they are issued
    • member services:

  • Staples:
    • recycle:
      • value: $2 in rewards per cartridge recycled -- see purchase requirement below
      • limit: Membership Level:
        • Standard: 10 per calendar month - no per day restriction
        • Plus ($500 in qualified purchases): 20 per calendar month - no per day restriction
        • Premier ($1000 in qualified purchases): 20 per calendar month - no per day restriction
      • type: any used ink or toner cartridge sold at any retail stores in the US
    • purchase requirement
      • $30 in ink/toner purchases in the past 180 days
    • recycling rewards:
      • issued: monthly, on a separate rewards certificate from purchase rewards, usually in the middle of the month after the month in which the recycling occurred. The rewards certificate is printable from the rewards site (ink rewards certificates can also be emailed and purchase rewards are also US Mailed).
      • usage: recycling rewards (and purchase rewards) are redeemable for most merchandise in Staples stores, online at staples.com [staples.com] or by phone at 1-800-333-3330 but cannot be redeemed for or applied against taxes, cash, credit remittance, delivery charges, custom printing orders placed online, promotional products, Staples gift cards, third party gift cards, prepaid phone cards, postage stamps, prior purchases, Staples Industrial purchases or any purchases made on other provider Web sites.
        • online: single transaction - must use full amount of reward check
        • in-store: two transactions -- a balance coupon is issued in-store if rewards check is not used all at once. Balance coupon has same expiration date as rewards check and must be used all at once in-store or online
      • expiration:
        • standard: the last day of the month 2 months following the month in which they are issued
        • plus: the last day of the month 2 months following the month in which they are issued
        • premier: the last day of the month 5 months following the month in which they are issued
    • member services


========================================


FAQ section (vers. 2013.07.01):


Q. Do you have to recycle or make a qualified purchase first? (Office Depot and OfficeMax)

A. It does not matter.


Q. Do you have to recycle and make a qualified purchase monthly for Office Depot's Rewards program?

A. Three key points:

--- Qualified purchases of $10 or more in a month are required to allow recycling rewards points to be earned for that month.
--- Rewards points are paid out in 1000 point increments.
--- Unpaid out points carry over from month to month until the end of the quarter when they expire.

Here is an example:

January: Make qualified purchases of $10 or more and recycle 7 carts earning 1400 rewards points. Payout of $10 for January (made in February). The remaining 400 rewards points are carried over to February.

February: Do not make a qualified purchase of $10 or more so not qualified to earn recycling rewards points. 400 rewards points carried over to March.

March: Make qualified purchases of $10 or more and recycle 9 carts earning 1800 rewards points. Payout of $20 (2000 points: 400 carried over plus 1600 earned in March) (made in April). The remaining 200 rewards points expire at the end of quarter.


Q. Do you have to recycle and make a qualified purchase monthly for OfficeMax's Business Rewards program?

A. Recycling rewards are only paid out (in $2 increments) to extent of qualified purchases. Here is an example based on OfficeMax's program:

January: recycle 10 carts, make $0.00 in qualified purchases. No payout for January (made in February). Recycling of 10 carts carried over to February.

February: recycle 10 carts, make $32 in qualified purchases. Payout of $32 for February (made in March). Recycling of 4 carts carried over to March.

March: recycle 0 carts, make $42 in qualified purchases. Payout of $8 for March (made in April). Qualified purchases of $34 carried over to April.

April: recycle 10 carts, make $0.00 in qualified purchases. Payout of $20 for April (made in May). Qualified purchases of $14 carried over to May.

May - November: no transactions. Qualified purchases of $14 carried over to December.

December: recycle 10 carts, make $4 in qualified purchases. Payout of $18 for December (made in January). Recycling of 1 cart lost at calendar year end.


Q. Where can I get used ink/toner cartridges?

A. Family and friends, neighbors, thift shops, garage/rummage sales, and of course like everything else, eBay.


Q. If I purchase an item with rewards will that purchase count my purchase requirement for recycling? (OD and OM only)

A. No, to the extent the purchase was paid for with rewards it will not count as a qualifying purchase for the purpose of the recycling purchase requirement.


Q. If I purchase an item with rewards will I earn the standard purchase rewards (e.g. Staples 10% back on ink or paper purchases)?

A. No, items purchased with rewards do not qualify as qualifying purchases for the purpose of earning standard purchase rewards.


Q. If I purchase an item that earns a bonus/special reward (100% back in rewards if item X is purchased, $Y back if item Z is purchased) and I purchase that item with rewards, will I receive the bonus/special reward?

A. It depends.

Office Depot: No, to the extend paid for with rewards (or coupons for that matter).

OfficeMax: So far yes with one exception. Paying for 100% back in rewards and fixed value (buy X, get $Y in rewards) bonus rewards offers with rewards have earned bonus rewards so at least for those two types of bonus rewards offers, MaxPerks rewards have "rolled".

The one bonus rewards offer that did not roll was its June 2010 "Get 20% Back in MaxPerks Rewards" offer and the offer's terms noted the exception:

"*20% MaxPerks Bonus Rewards offer valid in-store from June 20, 2010 thru June 26, 2010. Saving pass, phone promo code or online promo code and member's MaxPerks ID card must be presented at time of purchase. No Bonus Reward adjustments will be made after purchase. Not valid on computers, gift cards, general use prepaid cards, phone cards, purchases with a Retail ConnectSM card, sales tax, OfficeMax private label ink, toner and ink refills, Sprint® monthly price plans and purchases made prior to enrollment and purchases with a MaxPerks Reward Card."

Staples: No, to the extend paid for with rewards (or coupons for that matter).


========================================


Warning: Office Depot Worklife Rewards changing June 17

Office Depot Ink Recycling Policy: 20 cartridges per month as of 4/1/2010

Office Depot Ink Cartridge Recycling changing?

Office Max changes their ink recycling 05/10/09 (w/ additional policy changes 1/1/10)

Staples new ink recycling policy changes Starts July 1, 2010

Staples new ink recycling policy changes Starts Feb 1

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L10: Grand Master
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#31
Quote from phraser View Post :
went to office depot to recycle 20 and they turned me down and said they will only accept 5. 5 per day limit 20 per month. Ill try to go to one near my work if not then oh well im farked for this month
Interesting.

And you asked the cashier to ask a manager about the terms of the program? Did you try recycling in April? What happened then?

Three things to try if your stores enforce a 5 per day limit:

1. Have the manager print out and read the terms of the program. At the very bottom of the terms and conditions there is an asterisk. You might bring a copy to show them with the relevant bits highlighted :

"Worklife Rewards® Members will receive $3 back in Recycling Rewards for each cartridge recycled in-store, up to 20 per month. We can recycle additional cartridges but Recycling Rewards will only be issued for 20 per month*. ...

*Limit of 5 cartridges per day ended March 31, 2010."

2. Ask them to ring up the 20 carts (or 15 carts on Monday). If the limit is 5 per day, the rewards system will only count the first 5 anyway.

3. Go to 3 different stores on Monday if available. Then contact OD corporate and ask them what is going on at your stores.

I have heard from other posters that some individual OM stores are enforcing a 5 per day limit but you are the first that I recall noting OD stores enforcing a 5 per day limit at least now at the end of the 2nd month since the change in terms.
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#32
Quote from bpvh View Post :
Interesting.

And you asked the cashier to ask a manager about the terms of the program? Did you try recycling in April? What happened then?

Three things to try if your stores enforce a 5 per day limit:

1. Have the manager print out and read the terms of the program. At the very bottom of the terms and conditions there is an asterisk. You might bring a copy to show them with the relevant bits highlighted :

"Worklife Rewards® Members will receive $3 back in Recycling Rewards for each cartridge recycled in-store, up to 20 per month. We can recycle additional cartridges but Recycling Rewards will only be issued for 20 per month*. ...

*Limit of 5 cartridges per day ended March 31, 2010."

2. Ask them to ring up the 20 carts (or 15 carts on Monday). If the limit is 5 per day, the rewards system will only count the first 5 anyway.

3. Go to 3 different stores on Monday if available. Then contact OD corporate and ask them what is going on at your stores.

I have heard from other posters that some individual OM stores are enforcing a 5 per day limit but you are the first that I recall noting OD stores enforcing a 5 per day limit at least now at the end of the 2nd month since the change in terms.
A cashier at 1 of the 2 stores i use, at beginning of change of terms, a couple months ago, tried to tell me you could only do 5 at a time, then i went back to the same store a month later and they allowed the 20. I guess its usually best to keep a low profile, so i generally do not argue with an employee, just go to another store.
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i Build synology, hacktos
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#33
alright so I managed to get my 20 carts in Smilie. I guess the one location I went to had a real snobby bitch who didnt want to count or believe I had 20 inks.
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#34
Nice post really helpful. thank you..
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#35
Does Office Max have frequent FAR deals? If not, it's pretty difficult to buy what you want to earn.
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L10: Grand Master
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#36
Quote from macrophage View Post :
Does Office Max have frequent FAR deals? If not, it's pretty difficult to buy what you want to earn.
OM has very few Free After Rebate (FAR) deals but they have been having Free After Rewards (FARewards) deals every other month this year so far (enough that I have been able to max out my account ($720(12x60)) for recycling purposes). Who knows if they will continue.
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#37
Quote from bpvh View Post :
OM has very few Free After Rebate (FAR) deals but they have been having Free After Rewards (FARewards) deals every other month this year so far (enough that I have been able to max out my account ($720(12x60)) for recycling purposes). Who knows if they will continue.
But you still are kind of paying "half price" for the stuff you bought is that right?
Or how do you spend your rewards when you get them back? Does OM work like staples (in the past) where you can be rewarded with a reward purchase?
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L10: Grand Master
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#38
Quote from macrophage View Post :
But you still are kind of paying "half price" for the stuff you bought is that right?
Or how do you spend your rewards when you get them back? Does OM work like staples (in the past) where you can be rewarded with a reward purchase?
So far rewards have rolled. Again, who knows if that will continue.

Unfortunately paying for a purchase with rewards does not create a qualified purchase. So if you roll the same $200 over and over, you would still have only $200 in qualified spending (original $200 was out of pocket and yes, I know most will have friction from sales tax, but it's just an example).

I am fortunate that some of my local stores still follow the terms and conditions on using rewards to the letter.
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#39
For Office Depot, are the reward gift cards linked to your rewards number?
And will the purchases made with regular OD gift cards count towards purchases to redeem rewards?
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#40
Quote from macrophage View Post :
For Office Depot, are the reward gift cards linked to your rewards number?
Yes -- if you pay with your rewards payout card and do not use your rewards ID card, the purchase will still show up in your rewards account (as a purchase, not as a qualified purchase).

While using rewards payout cards from more than one account on a transaction is against the program's t&c, OD apparently does nothing if such an occurrence happens.

Quote from macrophage View Post :
And will the purchases made with regular OD gift cards count towards purchases to redeem rewards?
Yes, purchases with regular OD gift cards count as qualified purchases for both purchase rewards (1%, 10%, etc) and recycling rewards (toward the annual purchase requirement).
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#41
they must get a kick out of saying "no" to 20 cartridges or something. Out of 3 OD I have nearby, the manager at one location keeps insisting that they've ALWAYS had 5 per day recycling limit and the new change is that the maximum per month is 20, and 5/day still enforced. It didn't matter what the TOC said. I kept explaining that 5 per day was the old term and new term only mentioned 20/month, but not daily limit, but he won't budge.

So I called the OD reward dept, asked if they could talk to the manager about the real TOC, the manager refused to talk to them on the phone on the grounds that they do not know who they are talking to. I asked him if he could call the OD reward dept now and he refuses to and says "I will get in contact with my own supervisor and let you know" He took my phone number down, but never ever called me, not that I expected getting one. What kind of an a$$ am I dealing with here? I hate these super-hero managers enforcing their own "little" rules.

I am glad that I will soon be freed from recycling cartridges from all 3 stores and that I won't see those idiots' faces anymore.
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#42
Of the 4 stores I can go to, only one location lets me do 20 all at once. In fact, the employees at that store always remind me I can bring in more when I have less than 20. I just go to that one mostly now.

Quote from makeitslickER View Post :
they must get a kick out of saying "no" to 20 cartridges or something. Out of 3 OD I have nearby, the manager at one location keeps insisting that they've ALWAYS had 5 per day recycling limit and the new change is that the maximum per month is 20, and 5/day still enforced. It didn't matter what the TOC said. I kept explaining that 5 per day was the old term and new term only mentioned 20/month, but not daily limit, but he won't budge.

So I called the OD reward dept, asked if they could talk to the manager about the real TOC, the manager refused to talk to them on the phone on the grounds that they do not know who they are talking to. I asked him if he could call the OD reward dept now and he refuses to and says "I will get in contact with my own supervisor and let you know" He took my phone number down, but never ever called me, not that I expected getting one. What kind of an a$$ am I dealing with here? I hate these super-hero managers enforcing their own "little" rules.

I am glad that I will soon be freed from recycling cartridges from all 3 stores and that I won't see those idiots' faces anymore.
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#43
so I hear the rumor that staples is supposed to reduce the reward to $2 per cartridge starting in July. hopefully the others won't follow, as the others both have a purchase requirement.
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#44
nice summary. im going to miss staples $3 rewards Frown
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#45
Let me see if I understood the OD program right...

The checks are issued "quarterly with purchase rewards about 60 days after quarter's end".

So, for the April-June cycle that ends on June 30th, they'll start mailing the checks out on September 1st, and the expiration date will be November 30th?
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