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How to use Microsoft Rewards to get Xbox Game Pass for PC (and more!) for free

How to use Microsoft Rewards to get Xbox Game Pass for PC (and more!) for free

While Microsoft’s Game Pass for PC is scheduled to more than double in price as it  comes out of beta this week, don’t despair! Microsoft Rewards is your ticket to getting the best deal in gaming, for free.

Microsoft Rewards is basically free money, and not enough of you know how to use it. We’re going to show you how to use Microsoft Rewards to help buy all the things you want—an Xbox Series X! Starbucks! Amazon gift cards!—beginning with the awesome Game Pass for PC subscription.

Like the name says, Microsoft Rewards is Microsoft’s incentive program for using its consumer services. Using Bing earns you points. Playing Xbox games can earn you points. Playing PC games can earn you points. You can “chase points” as much as you’d like, and earn more and more. Or you can chill, go about your daily activities as you normally would, and still earn points. All of these points can be traded in for stuff you’ll actually want.

We’ll use the awesome Xbox Game Pass for PC, which costs $4.99 per month, as our target. Game Pass for PC is part of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate’s “Netflix-for-games” subscription, which we’ve already shown can be purchased for peanuts if you know the trick. But why pay at all? Microsoft Rewards is the answer to that.

Xbox E3 2019 press conference Game Pass Ultimate 3 Microsoft

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate bundles Microsoft’s Netflix-esque Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Game Pass for PC subscriptions with its Xbox Live Gold service.

What can you earn with Microsoft Rewards?

As we go through our tutorial, keep your eye on the prize: a one-month Game Pass for PC subscription is 7,000 points. You can pay 5,000 points for a $5 Microsoft gift card, though that can only be applied to games, apps, movies/TV shows, or devices like a Surface or Xbox—not Game Pass.

microsoft rewards redemption page Mark Hachman / IDG

Just some of the things you can redeem for Microsoft Rewards points

But the Microsoft Rewards redemption page offers all sorts of possibilities: Microsoft gift cards and Game Pass subscriptions, including Game Pass Ultimate; gift cards to retailers like Amazon, Target, REI, Sephora, and Walmart; food offers at Starbucks, Burger King, Dominos, UberEats, DoorDash and GrubHub. You can even donate your points (and their cash value) to the World Wildlife Foundation, Girls Who Code, the American Red Cross, The Trevor Project, and more. Microsoft will often “pay” you points to double your donation.

Here’s a small, representative sample:

  • $5 Amazon gift card: 5,250 points
  • $10 Microsoft gift card: 10,000 points
  • Xbox Game Pass Ultimate (1 mo): 12,000 points
  • $15 DoorDash gift card: 19,500 points

You can even gamble points, with games such as “Select Three” or “Whack-a-Pinata” offering the chance at $250,000, 500 Xbox One S consoles or other prizes for 300 points a pop.

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