Are coffee reward schemes worth it or a rip-off?

You have to spend £71.55 to get a free drink at Costa

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Are coffee reward schemes worth it or a rip-off?

Customers at Costa Coffee have to fork out £71.55 to get a free drink under the firm's loyalty scheme.

A TV investigation found coffee chain's rewards deals vary hugely - the worst makes you buy over four times as many cups as the best.

See also: Get a discount coffee by bringing your own mug

See also: Our love affair with loyalty cards costs us a fortune

The worst offender was Costa coffee where customers have to fork out £71.55 to get a free cup.

Costa's reward scheme, the Costa Coffee Club, offers five points for every £1 spent in their store. That means that someone purchasing a large latte, which costs £2.65, will accumulate 10 points.

To get £1, you need 100 points, or 1p per point - meaning each latte is only worth 10 pence under the loyalty scheme. Customers would then need to by 27 cups in order to get the 265 points needed for a free coffee.

Credits: Getty

Starbucks also runs a reward scheme

Starbucks My Rewards works by awarding a point for each purchase - regardless of the final bill amount. - with a free drink once you've got 15 points.

This means customers need to spent £40.50 in order to get a larger latte - the equivalent of 15 cups.

Researchers for Channel 4 show Supershoppers, found McDonald's loyalty scheme to best value as customers only need to purchase six cups in order to get a freebie - the equivalent of £11.34.

Retail expert Clare Bailey, from Retailchampion.co.uk, said: "You do have to spend a lot of money at Costa to get your freebie so don't stick to just one loyalty scheme.

Credits: Getty

People have to spend more than £70 to get a free coffee in Costa

"If you drink at Costa regularly it is worth being a member of the reward system as you get free Wi-Fi and other perks. Collect loyalty points at all the places you shop and eat and when a freebie comes up it is a nice perk - rather than going out of you way to be a loyal customer."

  • Supershoppers, is on Channel 4 at 8pm on Tuesday.

How many coffees do you need to buy to get a freebie?

  • Cafe Nero, buy 9 get 10th free, 9, £25.20, £2.89
  • Starbucks, buy 15 get 16th free, 15, £40.50, £2.70
  • McDonald's, buy six get seventh free, 6, £11.34, £1.89


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