Monday, June 23, 2008

Points Programs

There are quite a few points programs out there. I have an HBC card but have never redeemed, have an optimum card (redeemed quite a few times), airmiles (never redeemed and rarely shop at stores with it), collect PC points and Canadian Tire Money.

I think I did my math right for this.....but I am in no way a person who is great with math (but when it comes to money I am usually pretty good!)

So I was looking at what it costs for what you get....

Shoppers gives 10 points per $1 spent.
Minimum redemption buying without bonus points: You would spend $350 to get enough points to redeem for $5 off. Sounds pretty crappy, BUT if you are patient you can redeem for more.

20x the points day (usually min required to spend is $50) and redeeming when they offer more money off for the points redeemed. The highest redemption level is 75,000 points for $150 off. Normally, you would need to spend $7500 to get that many points, but on a 20x day it would be $375. (This doesn't have to all be spent on a 20x day either).

When they offer bonus for redemption generally it is 75,000 points for $200 off.
So if you shop on 20x days and redeem on bonus pay $375 and at a later bonus redemption date can get $200 off. So that's $575 of product for $375.

You can work the system better when you also use coupons that you have to pay tax on. Why? From what I understand you still get points for the dollar amount that got deducted because you have to pay tax on it still. This would mean spending less money and getting the same.

For those who are also participating in the Gift Certificate program where we will be sending our kids to school. Shoppers gift cards give you 2% back towards tuition costs. Not a lot but every little bit counts!

HBC (Zellers)
HBC gives 50 points per dollar spent.
Minimum gift card redemption on their website is 200,000 points for a $25 gift card (although there was a spot that said you can also redeem for $10 gift cards).
You would need to spend $4000 to receive $25 back. There are ways to get more points: HBC credit card and sometimes they offer bonus for credit card users (and I think rarely offer for non-credit card users). I don't want another credit card so I just stick to buying things I need from Zellers (since I prefer to support Zellers which is a Canadian company over another Box Store).

From what I can figure - Shoppers is a better deal for the points program but also doesn't carry lots of items Zellers has.

If you participate in the school gift cert. Zellers is also 2%. (Whereas the 'other' box store is only 1% and doesn't offer any type of points program)

PC Points
10 points for $1 when you use your PC mastercard
5 points for $1 when you use PC debit
20,000 points is worth $20. $2000 or $4000 (depending on what you pay with) would be spent to redeem that amount. Everyone needs groceries so either way not a loss.
I don't know if they are still offering it, but if you use the cloth PC bags you get 50 points for each bag used. Use the bag 400x and get the $20 off. If you think of how many bags you take home from shopping it adds up quick! The bags fit a lot of stuff too and we use them for lots of other things too.

We actually opt for using Gift cert through the school where you get 4% towards offsetting tuition costs. $2000 equals $80 and $4000 equals $160.
When I remember to take my cloth bags and ask about the points I will pay most of my bill with gift cards and then ask them to charge a small amount. This way I also get the points.

We receive points from other things as well on our card and since we started (about 7 years ago....the year before we got married). We have redeemed $587 worth of points for groceries and also a tympanic thermometer, kitchen scale, photo developing and I think that's about it.

Canadian Tire Money
I don't know what the reward offer exactally is (can't find it on their site) but I can say we have redeemed a lot.

The gift cert program is 3% but since the frequency of shopping at Canadian Tire varies so much I generally do not buy the gift certificates.

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