Festive saving tips for the cost-conscious consumer

Festive saving tips for the cost-conscious consumer
Festive saving tips for the cost-conscious consumer

Making your moolah go much further this festive season

According to research*, last year’s festive splurge was projected to lighten the average South African’s wallet by more than R5600. Purchases included things like Christmas presents, transport, entertainment and holidays. With yet another tough year under our belts, it’s unlikely that this amount is going to increase. We’re therefore left with a conundrum – how can we spend the same amount (or less!) but get the same festive luxuries (or more)? Rioma Cominelli, Director of First Loyalty Plus believes that the way to do this is by simply by harnessing the power of loyalty programmes.

Rioma says that loyalty programmes are specifically designed to reward members through discounted rates, cash back and other exclusive offers. She adds however that many consumers often aren’t able to maximise on their memberships, because they are not clear on what each one offers. She explains, “No two loyalty or rewards programmes are identical. Many retailers, banks, restaurants and hospitality groups offer loyalty cards, but all too often we sign up without knowing how we will benefit, or how much we need to spend to qualify for rewards.”

For those wanting to save big this festive season, Rioma suggests that you capitalise on everything that loyalty programmes offer and offers 3 tips on how to do this:

1. Make the circle bigger: Before you can make the best of a loyalty programme, you need to make sure that you are a member of one. Make it your mission to sign up for free loyalty programmes offered by your favourite retailers, bank, restaurants etc., but don’t stop there. You should also consider signing up for one inexpensive paid-for loyalty programme. By registering for a paid-for programme you can rest assured that savings are guaranteed, and discounts will almost always exceed the small monthly fee. This is a clever way to get more for a (lot) less. For example, for only R125 per month, First Loyalty Plus provides you with immediately discounted rates of up to 50% off lifestyle products like holidays, car hire, flights, cruises, movies, spa treatments, online shopping, dining and coffee, as well as free activities, cash back and more.

2. Do your research:Ask not what you can do for your loyalty programme, but what your loyalty programme can do for you. There is massive benefit in understanding exactly what your loyalty programmes entail. Draw up a list of each of the programmes that you belong to and list the benefits that each one offers, making sure you understand which ones offer cash back and points and which ones offer discount vouchers.

3. Sign up for newsletters: No one loves spam mail – unless it’s going to save you money! Forewarned is forearmed, so be sure to subscribe to your loyalty programmes’ mailing list so that you get a heads up on any additional savings, points and discounts as these are often only available to members. Also keep an eye out for emails around the ever-popular Black Friday shopping mania that will soon be upon us, for super savings.

Rioma concludes, “Being a member of a loyalty programme naturally comes with fabulous perks, so make sure you’re cashing in on yours! This may be in the form of free gifts (which are great for re-gifting to friends and family); early access to products; free delivery for online orders; discounts, rewards or cash back; in-store deals that are exclusive to members; and the option to earn points for gifts or discounts. This festive season make sure you’re getting the most bang from your buck by visiting www.firstloyaltyplus.co.za.”