Tesco has doubled the number of points Clubcard shoppers can earn as part of its revamped loyalty scheme.
From today (Monday 17 August), every £1 spent in store and online will now earn Clubcard holders two points, rather than just one. The move is part of Tesco’s drive to compete in an environment where credit-crunched households are increasingly switching to cheaper supermarkets chains or cutting back on the amount they spend on their weekly shop.
Tesco has attracted nearly half a million new Clubcard customers over the past three months, largely as a result of its previous campaign that rewarded double points on selected items. It says that more than 1.5 million customers doubled up their vouchers during this period, with clothing and wine the most popular categories.
The supermarket giant has now extended this scheme so that customers collect double the number of points on most purchases, with petrol, tobacco, lottery tickets and prescription medicines all excluded.
Carolyn Bradley, marketing director at Tesco, says the timing of the new scheme means customers will receive their enhanced vouchers in time for Christmas.
"The UK’s biggest and best loyalty scheme just got even better for customers who stand to double their rewards simply by continuing to shop at Tesco,” Bradley adds.
Tesco Clubcard’s scheme, which has over 15 million active members, was launched back in 1995. The scheme allows shoppers to build up points, which are then sent every three months in voucher form. Members also receive coupons and special offers.
How to take advantage
If you already shop at Tesco then it makes good financial sense to sign up for the Clubcard scheme. Tesco estimates that a family spending £90 a week between now and Christmas could earn £34 in vouchers.
While these points can be redeemed off your shop, you can quadruple their real value by using them on deals on ‘partner offers’ in the Tesco Rewards Brochure. This includes days out at Alton Towers and other theme parks, cheaper meals at restaurants such as Pizza Express, cinema tickets and magazine subscriptions.
You can also earn Airmiles – meaning your £34 is enough for a return flight to Paris.
If none of these offers tempt you, and you would prefer to reduce your shopping bill by using your vouchers in-store, then bear in mind that Tesco will double every £5 worth of vouchers when they are spent on: clothing and many beauty products; toys, nappies and other baby accessories; wine and champagne; flowers, plants and gardening; and in its opticians department (excluding eye tests).
You can also boost your points – and even make money – by looking out for special offers in Tesco offering bonus Clubcard points. While it might seem like a false economy to buy items just for the points value, in some cases it might actually leave you better off. Sign up to Tesco’s weekly email alert so you can keep up-to-date with all the latest bonus point offers.
Don’t forget to take your own bags with you when you do your weekly shop – not only is this good for the environment, it will also earn you extra Clubcard points.
Other loyalty schemes
Tesco claims that its Clubcard scheme is the “ biggest and best” – but how does it really compare to others out there?
One of the supermarket’s biggest competitors is Sainsbury’s, which runs the Nectar loyalty scheme. This rewards customers with two points for every £1 spent in the store in England and Wales, and one point for every litre of fuel purchased from its forecourts. You can also earn Nectar points at Homebase, BP, expedia and Gala Bingo, and on selected websites when you visit via nectar.com.
You can use your points against a variety of different purchases, from shopping to spa days and holidays.
Another popular loyalty scheme is offered by Boots. The store's Advantage Card rewards shoppers with four points for every £1 spent on most purchases within the store and online. It also has regular offers and bonus point promotions.
Every point you earn is worth 1p, and can be spent on products in store.
To take advantage of loyalty card promotions and bonus points, sign up to newsletters from your shop of choice and check out CardPoints.co.uk, which keeps an up-to-date list of the latest promotions.