Make The Most Of Canada’s Top Four Points Programs | Refresh Financial

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Money Saving Tips: Make The Most Of Canada’s Top Four Points Programs

Points cards

You know a couponer, don’t you? Someone who clips flyers and scours the internet for hours every day, looking for exactly the right combination of coupons, points and sales to get massive savings on their everyday purchases. You’ve heard a story or two about people walking out of Walmart with half their purchases free, or people earning themselves a lifetime supply of toilet paper just by hitting the right store with the right coupon at the right time. I know you wish you had the time and the patience to figure this all out for yourself. I do, too. The fact remains, though, most of us don’t have the time to even think about where to begin.

That’s why I’m here today to tell you that you don’t need to. You don’t even need coupons. All you need is to remain loyal to four Canadian points programs, and you’ll be earning free groceries, free gas, free travel and more free stuff in no time.

The first, is Shopper’s Optimum Points. While none of us really shop at Shopper’s like we do at places like Real Canadian Superstore or Walmart, there is a little loophole and it’s easy to take advantage of. Each month or so, Shopper’s holds a 20x points event. If you spend over $50, you get 20x the points on your entire purchase. If you wait to buy all your regular toiletries, deodorant, dental care, hair care, makeup, skin care, contact lens solution, first aid kit supplies, and even some household products like toilet paper, paper towels, laundry detergent, and snacks, you’ll easily get past the $50 threshold. With the 20x bonus, $50 is 10,000 points. In just two of these visits to Shopper’s, making sure I bought just items that we use and would have to buy anyway, I earned well over $85 to spend at Shopper’s. Imagine how much you’d pile up over the course of a year! You can sign up for their newsletter to get notified when the 20x events roll around or you can download their app for your smartphone. You’ll also notice, while you shop, that some products are worth more points than others. Grab them if you need them!

The next one you need to pay attention to is PC Points at participating stores, such as Real Canadian Superstore. Every month or so, Real Canadian Superstore offers a coupon that will give you 250,000 bonus points if you spend over $250. This, combined with the points you would have already earned, is like getting $25 cash back on your purchase. It literally pays to schedule major grocery shops around this event. If you download the PC Plus app you’ll also be able to see which items are worth more points.

You also have to pay attention to Petro Points, because Petro Points will earn you free gas. Not only does every swipe at the time being enter you into a contest to win free gas for 50 years, but if you earn enough points, you can actually redeem them for gas. Every month, you can earn up to an extra 1000 points if you purchase 250L of gas or more in a month. If you drive a lot for your job, you can easily rack up the points at Petro-Can. You can also keep an eye out for their frequent promotions that will earn you upwards of 5x the points on selected products.

Air Miles is up next, as the most popular rewards program in Canada, and boasting the largest rewards catalogue as well. Though Air Miles do expire after five years, you can accumulate enough miles to make it worth your while, if you’re smart. Air Miles partner retailers often hold events where you can earn bonus miles, either by purchasing certain products, or by making your purchases on multiplier days. Most often these days occur at Safeway, but there are many other retailers in Canada that run similar promotions from time to time. You can sign up for the Air Miles newsletter and make frequent stops at the Air Miles website to find coupons for products that come with bonus Air Miles.

That’s it. If you stay loyal and up-to-date with these four points rewards programs, you’ll be earning free groceries, gas, travel and everything in between in no time. There are a few things to keep in mind, though:

  • Don’t use points programs as an excuse to spend more money.
  • Make sure you’re buying the things you need, and earning points on items you would have bought even if they had come with no points.
  • Ensure you’re sticking to your budget.
  • Keep your eye on your credit card bill and make sure you’re spending smart.

Pro-tip: Save all of your points from all of these programs throughout the year, and redeem them when Christmas rolls around to take the edge off the Christmas spending.

What is your favourite rewards program? Have you ever taken advantage of points like this? Let us know in the comments!

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