After earning points for a case of wine and flights to Scotland, I am a firm believer in the power of using customer loyalty schemes. It feels nice to be rewarded for shopping at the places I already frequent. Also, as my mom used to say “you don’t get rich by spending all of your money”. Using points can be a great way to enjoy the luxury life by living your regular life. Also, little expenses – a coffee here, a short flight there, that new lipstick you wanted – can really add up in terms of getting you the points to get the items you want. Here are some top tips for getting ahead with points.
Focus on places where you actually shop and stick with those vendors
Think about the places you visit on a regular basis and find out if they have a program. Sometimes, a retailer might not have a points program of their own but purchases can be used to earn points for another program. For example, in the UK, Nectar pointscan be earned by doing anything from buying groceries at Sainbury’s to booking a vacation on Expedia. Points can be exchanged for anything from wine to EasyJet flights. Many airline loyalty schemes also have points partnerships with hotels and auto rental companies
Learn the system and know what you want to get out of the program – then boost your point collection
Find out what prizes and rewards are offered and then work your way up towards the amount of points you need. Often times, companies will provide further opportunities for earning points and rewards – bonus point days or extra points for getting a product you might already need – use these opportunities.
Lots of companies have loyalty schemes but knowing where to start can be daunting. Automating point collection is the way to go in my view. Review the site to see if there is a way to link credit cards or easily request missed points. The best option is when you can earn points the easy way by online shopping.
Watch out for those pesky expiration dates!
Its so annoying to get right to the brink of some fabulous treat only to find out that all of your points have disappeared. There are some great companies out there, like AwardWallet,that can help you keep track of the programs that you’re already a part of. However, if you only ever have a small amount of points, it could be a sign that the program is not right for you. This means it is time to search for another plan that fits better. For example, if you aren’t using the points for a specific hotels program, consider joining the Hotels.com scheme as it covers a huge range of hotels.
Sometimes there are great non-points related benefits
Sometimes a company doesn’t have points but there are other benefits to being loyal. I used to pay for a weekly food delivery service that held a quarterly meet and greet as well as a food tasting for other users. They would also send surprises, like gourmet jam, along with some of my orders. It was nice to get a little bit extra!