Must-Have Rewards Programs

Rewards programs are a great way to save a little extra at stores you shop at frequently. Most are free to sign up for and require no maintenance. Even if you're not a frequent shopper you can still enjoy birthday rewards, special discounts and possibly even early Black Friday access with some of these programs. We picked out some of our favorite rewards programs and break them down so you can see exactly what you're earning when you shop with them!

ShopRunner
ShopRunner
ShopRunner gives users free 2-day shipping at over 140 stores. Sometimes that means free shipping no minimum, and sometimes the store's free shipping threshold is lower for ShopRunner members. Popular ShopRunner merchants include American Eagle, Newegg, New York & Company, 1-800-Flowers, and Express. ShopRunner costs $79 per year or $8.95 per month. However, if you're a Mastercard or American Express cardholder, you may be eligible for a free membership! In addition, ShopRunner offers free 30-day trials and runs other promotions as well. You can sometimes even find them on LivingSocial or Groupon! When they run promos like these, we always post about them, so keep an eye on our hot deals page. Don't forget to sign up for your free 30-day trial!

Amazon Prime
Amazon Prime
Amazon Prime is a must-have, especially for Black Friday shopping. You get free 2-day shipping on millions of items at Amazon! In addition, members receive exclusive discounts and coupons, early access to Amazon Black Friday deals, and special member-only discounts. You also gain access to Amazon Prime Video, Prime Pantry, Prime Music, Prime Reading, free unlimited photo storage, and more. Amazon Prime costs $99 per year or $10.99 per month. EBT cardholders can get their membership at a discount, and college students with .edu email addresses can get a free 6-month trial. If you're shopping Amazon this Black Friday, make sure you have a Prime membership! You can visit our "How To Save Money at Amazon" article for even more ways to save with your membership. Sign up here for a free 30-day trial.

Kohl's Yes2You Rewards
Kohl's Yes2You Rewards
The Kohl's Yes2You rewards program is free to join. As a Yes2You rewards member, you'll earn 1 point for every dollar spent. Once you hit 100 points, you'll earn a $5 reward. You will also get 8 special offers per year, plus a birthday gift. These offers range from double points days to bonus points just to reach the next reward certificate threshold. There are also ways to earn bonus points throughout the year, and they usually feature a Yes2You Rewards members sale where you receive double points on all of your purchases. Yes2You rewards get even sweeter when you factor in stacking coupons and Kohl's Cash! Sign up for free here and make sure to check out our Kohl's shopping tips to get the most bang for your buck!

Plenti
Plenti
Plenti is free to join. It's a unique program in that it works at several retailers, both online and in-store. Plenti stores include Macy's, Mobil, Hulu, Chili's, Rite-Aid, and more. Your first step is to sign up for free. You will get a card sent to you in the mail and then you can earn Plenti points by swiping your rewards card or entering your card number at checkout. You can use the points at ANY Plenti partner store to get money off your purchase and more. You can also activate special bonus offers, like double points when buying specific products, or extra points when you spend a certain amount. Plenti has a very user-friendly website and app, so it's easy to understand and use. Our favorite way to use our Plenti card is to save on gas purchases! Sign up here for free!

Walmart Savings Catcher
Walmart Savings Catcher
Walmart doesn't have the traditional "rewards program" that so many of their competitors have to offer. The upside is that the closest thing Walmart has, SavingsCatcher, is arguably the simplest way to get rewarded at a major retailer. All you have to do is sign up for free. When you shop at Walmart, scan your store receipt with the Walmart app or enter the receipt number online. If Walmart's prices don't beat top competitors in your area, they give you the difference in a gift card. You are then able to cash out the savings onto a Walmart gift card. The only drawback to the program is that they only match purchases for stores in your area and if you don't have other major competitors there won't be anything to match. They also only match certain categories such as pantry staples, consumable items (paper towels, trash bags), health and beauty. On top of the category restrictions they also don't compare to sales that have BOGO offers or percentage discounts. The list of exclusions is pretty long but if you shop at Walmart anyways it's super simple to upload your receipt to check for savings you might not otherwise receive! You can sign up for free here.

Target REDcard
Target REDcard
Do you like free shipping? Do you like automatic discounts? Then you'll love Target's REDcard. They offer a debit card version for free that securely links to your bank account. They also have a credit card version and both offer the exact same benefits. REDcard holders get free shipping on every purchase, plus 5% off automatically. Target also recently added even more benefits to their REDcard program. Now, REDcard customers will get early access to special events, products, and promotions as well as exclusive extras like special items, deals, and a 10% off coupon on your cardholder anniversary. The discount stacks with Cartwheel offers, too, so you can save even more! Sign up for your free REDcard here, and then go on a Bullseye's Playground shopping spree. You deserve it!

JCPenney Rewards
JCPenney Rewards
When you sign up for JCPenney Rewards for free, you're on your way to racking up points. You'll get 1 point for every $2 spent. JCPenney cardholders will earn 1 point per dollar spent. You'll get a $10 reward once you hit 200 points, plus a birthday gift and bonus events. If you are a JCPenney cardholder, this program is a no-brainer. If you're not a JCPenney cardholder, the rewards may take a bit longer to reach, but every little bit of savings helps! Recently JCPenney has started to offer bonus rewards for members such as spend $50 and receive a $10 reward. This is a great way to save a little extra and it's free to sign up!

Sears & Kmart Shop Your Way Rewards
Sears & Kmart Shop Your Way Rewards
Shop Your Way Rewards (SYWR) is a program that extends across multiple stores. The most popular are Sears and Kmart. Your first step is to join the program for free then, when you're logged in to your SWYR account and make a purchase at a qualifying merchant, you'll earn 10 SYWR points for every dollar spent. You can save points for up to a year, and they work like cash! In addition, once you opt in to emails and verify your email address, you are then eligible to participate in SYWR Sweeps. That means you can enter to win SYWR points, appliances, toys, and more -- for free. Finally, SYWR also frequently hands out Surprise Points. These points usually have their own requirements, like a specific redemption category or a minimum purchase. There are even items that are FREE after rewards points. For example, this (now-expired) deal gave shoppers 100% back in points when they spent $10 on products like trash bags, all-purpose cleaner, and more. Keep in mind that although your points from purchases last for a year, bonus points expire quite quickly. Shop Your Way may email you when points are expiring, but they don't always so it's better to keep an eye on them so they don't expire. Sign up for free here!

Toys R Us Rewards
Toys R Us Rewards
The Toys R Us rewards program is free to join. Whether you're into blind bags, toy surprises, video games, or action figures, these rewards add up quickly when you shop at Toys R Us. Once you sign up for free, you will earn 1 point for every dollar you spend at Toys R Us and Babies R Us. Once you earn 125 points, you will get a $5 reward. You can also earn up to 10% back on purchases made from your Babies R Us registry. Make sure you sign your little one up for Geoffrey's Birthday Club -- they'll get a gift and card on their special day! You can bank up to $200 in rewards to save for something special, and you'll earn points even faster when you use your Toys R Us credit card. Finally, Rewards Members get special exclusive offers. In 2016, Toys R Us gave rewards members early access to over 100 of their Black Friday doorbusters! Not bad for a free signup!

OfficeDepot / OfficeMax Rewards
OfficeDepot / OfficeMax Rewards
The free-to-join Office Depot rewards program gives you 2% back in rewards on every purchase! You'll also get members-only savings like special pricing and bonus rewards. Rewards can be redeemed in-store and online. Earn even more when you recycle ink and toner cartridges; you'll get $2 back for up to 10 cartridges per month. You can also review products on the Office Depot website and earn $2 back in rewards! This rewards membership is tiered, so if you spend $500 within a 365-day period, you'll become a VIP, which means even more special perks as well as free shipping no minimum.

Staples Rewards
Staples Rewards
Staples' free rewards program gives you 2-5% back in rewards when you shop in-store! You can receive free next-day delivery on certain items when you spend $50 online. If you spend at least $30 on ink or toner you can recycle up to 20 ink cartridges per month to get $2 back in rewards for each one! Rewards members can also get in on special bonus events and deals. Staples Rewards are issued every month in $5 increments and anything under $5 will rollover through the end of the following calendar quarter.

Petco Pals Rewards
Petco Pals Rewards
Petco Pals Rewards give you $5 in rewards for every 100 points you earn. You'll also get a sweet Pals Savings Book, valid for 30 days after sign-up, filled with coupons and great deals. Once you complete your Pals profile, you'll also get a free birthday treat and monthly wellness offers. Pals Rewards also comes with personalized discounts, coupons, and specialsl.

Walgreens Balance Rewards
Walgreens Balance Rewards
Walgreens' rewards program is called Balance Rewards. Once you sign up for free, you will begin earning Balance Rewards points. You'll get 10 rewards points for each dollar spent, 1000 points equaling a $1.00 reward. You can earn points for buying specific items both in-store and online. You can also earn points when you fill prescriptions. If you buy a lot of beauty products at Walgreens, you may also want to supplement your Balance Rewards membership with a Beauty Enthusiast membership. It's also free to join! You will get 5000 points for every $50 spent on most health & beauty purchases. You will still earn points for other purchases in other categories, but a Beauty Enthusiast membership can be very rewarding if you purchase beauty items frequently. Balance Rewards members get a ton of awesome discounts, and you can make them even better by saving different coupons to your card. The easiest way to do this is through the Walgreens website or app. When you find an offer you like, "clip" it and it will be saved to your card! Then when you enter your rewards information at checkout, your savings will apply. You can turn your rewards points into dollars off future purchases, or save them to reach a $50 reward! If you purchase your prescriptions at Walgreens you can also earn 100 points per 30-day prescription or 300 points per 90-day prescription.

My Best Buy Rewards
My Best Buy Rewards
My Best Buy is free to join, and you get better benefits by spending more. As a member, you will earn 1 point for every $2 spent. Once you hit 250 points (spend $500), you will get a $5 rewards certificate. You earn points faster when you use a Best Buy credit card or spend more each year. Best Buy generally offers a $10 Reward Certificate for pre-ordering select video games early and to qualify you must have a rewards account. Reward certificates spend like cash and can be earned in increments of $5. Once you spend $1,500 in a calendar year you are bumped up to Elite Status and will receive free shipping with no minimum purchase, plus last year they offered select Black Friday items a day early to Elite members. It's free to sign up and even if you don't spend anything you are still able to view the My Best Buy member discounts and of course receive promotional emails.

Sephora Beauty Insider
Sephora Beauty Insider
If you're a Sephora addict, do yourself a favor and sign up for their Beauty Insider Rewards Program! It's free to join and it really pays off. One fan-favorite benefit? You get a FREE birthday gift from Sephora just for signing up! This year, Beauty Insiders could choose between two different sets of minis from Tarte and Caudalie. Twice a year they offer a sale for rewards members! These discounts are tiered, and they start at 10% off. You can redeem points for awesome samples, full-sized products, makeovers, beauty experiences, and more! Plus, points don't expire, so you can bank them if nothing catches your eye. Stack coupon codes for free deluxe samples -- you can use one code per order, but each order gets at least 3 free samples. In the past, samples have included brands like Urban Decay, Benefit, Too Faced, NARS, and more. Sample promo codes are updated weekly, and there are so many that you're bound to always get some bonus goodies with your order. Sephora's Beauty Insider program is tiered. The basic free membership includes all of the benefits we've already listed. Spend $350 per year, and you'll be upgraded to VIB, which also includes monthly gifts and a free custom makeover each year. VIB Rouge members must spend $1,000 per year, and they get all of these benefits plus early access to select products, bonus goodies, special gifts, and more. Finally, if you shop at Sephora more than twice per year, consider purchasing a Sephora Flash membership. It costs $10 and gets you free 2-day shipping for one year. Since shipping at Sephora is $5.95 unless you spend $50, the Flash Membership pays for itself if you use it twice. Sephora Flash members also get discounted expedited shipping!

Ulta Ultamate Rewards
Ulta Ultamate Rewards The Ultamate Rewards program is a favorite among Ulta shoppers. It's free to join! You earn 1 point for every dollar spent. Those points translate directly into money off your purchase. 100 points gets you $3.00 off, 250 points gets you $8 off, 500 points gets you $17.50 off, and so on. Once you sign up for emails and pass along your birthday information, you will get a free gift on your birthday as well as double points during your birthday month. Subscribing to emails also gets you up to 5 times the points on specific purchases. You earn even more points when you shop with an Ulta credit card, but a credit card is not required for you to join the rewards program.

MyLowe's Lowe's Rewards
MyLowe's Lowe's Rewards MyLowe's is free to join. The best benefit is that it gives members FREE parcel shipping. The program also gives members easier returns, better tracking, and mobile shopping lists. It's a great way to keep track of what colors you're painting your house, the type of fertilizer you use and even remembers what that weird tree you planted out front is called. Free signup for free shipping? Count us in!

Dell Advantage Rewards
Dell Advantage Rewards Once you join Dell Advantage Rewards for free, you'll start getting free expedited delivery! After each purchase, you get up to 3% back in rewards that can be used on future purchases. There are also special bonus offers that occur throughout the year. For instance, as of press time Dell is offering an extra $50 in bonus rewards with purchase of select Dell Gaming Monitors. Rewards can then be spent on future purchases at Dell. Keep in mind that rewards earned typically don't post until 30 days after your purchase.

Newegg EggPoints
Newegg EggPoints Newegg's rewards program is called EggPoints. Once you sign up for free, you will begin earning EggPoints on eligible purchases. EggPoints can be used 30 days after you earn them, and once you hit 100 EggPoints, you will earn $1.00 back to spend at Newegg.com. Sometimes you will get surprise EggPoints and you can even get them for leaving reviews! Points expire 90 days after they are issued but if you earn more points it extends your expiration another 90 days.

GameStop PowerUp Rewards
GameStop's PowerUp Rewards GameStop's PowerUp rewards is a tiered membership. You can join it for free or level up to a Pro or Elite Pro membership for $14.99 or $29.99 per year, respectively. The base membership includes 10 points for every dollar spent, plus exclusive birthday and monthly offers. Pro Membership rewards you with up to 30 points for every dollar spent, up to $50 in exclusive monthly offers, up to 20% Off pre-owned games and up to 20% extra trade in credit. Your Power Up Rewards points can then be redeemed for GameStop or ThinkGeek reward certificates or platform currency.

These are just some of our favorites and we know there are hundreds more out there, so let us know if you have a favorite rewards program! Anyone offer bonus birthday treats or exclusive offers we should know about?

Thanks for Visiting and Tell Your Friends!

October 10, 2017
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