Community Scoop

A look at loyalty schemes

Raewyn FoxRaewyn Fox
NZ Federation of Family Budgeting Services

Fly buys, Onecard, Airpoints, AA Smart Card and the latest loyalty programme – Mega Card, the list is endless. Retailer loyalty schemes are ever increasing all trying to lure consumers to shop with their brand but this can end up costing consumers more in the long run for the reward. People’s wallets are bulging with various loyalty cards which may not be as rewarding as you first thought.

If you shop at a place you normally don’t shop at just to earn points, you are probably losing out. The things you need to consider is what effort or cost am I putting in for this end reward.  Do I have to travel further? Am I paying a higher price for the product? Am I making a purchase that was never needed in the first place? These things can ultimately mean you are not earning any ‘reward’ at the end…you’ve actually paid out more for it than it was worth.

It takes a long time to earn or build up the points to redeem these for a reward. The average can be between $20 – $50 spent for every 1 point earned and you may need to save up a fair few points before these can be redeemed. Effectively you could be spending hundreds, sometimes thousands of dollars to get a reward that may be worth $50/$100. The best way to make use of these schemes is to join one at where you regularly shop.  The reality is that you are far better to buy stuff on their low price, and then use the loyalty scheme as a nice bonus if you’ve managed to get something at a reasonable price.  This makes your loyalty programme fun and exciting especially when you don’t realise the points building up and you are able to redeem these for something that truly is rewarding!

This blog has been contributed by a member of ComVoices

ComVoices  actively promotes the value that community sector organisations and their people, both paid and unpaid, add to New Zealand’s economic and social wellbeing through information, and political advocacy and dialogue.

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