News,  Points and Miles

Starbucks to change rewards program on April 16

As Master Travellr reported early March, Starbucks was rumoured to make changes to its rewards program. Well, it’s official.

As of April 16, the coffee chain will make changes to the way redemptions are done, switching to a revenue-based model.

Rather than redeeming 125 stars for any beverage or food item, Starbucks will shift to a tiered model, allowing customers to choose from drink customizations through packaged coffees. Redemptions will range from 25 to 400 stars.

  • 25 Stars: Extra Espresso Shot, Dairy Substitute or Additional Flavor
  • 50 Stars: Brewed Hot Coffee, Hot Tea or select Bakery Items
  • 150 Stars: Handcrafted Drink, Hot Breakfast or Yogurt Parfaits
  • 200 Stars: Lunch Sandwich, Protein Box or Salad
  • 400 Stars: Select Merchandise or Packaged Coffee

In 2016, Starbucks changed from a model where users got a free drink or beverage after 12 transactions to one where customers got points per dollar.

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“Since introducing Starbucks Rewards ten years ago, we’ve experienced tremendous growth and continued to evolve the program to meet the changing needs and purchase patterns of our customers,” said Matthew Ryan, Starbucks chief marketing officer. “These new updates put choice in the hands of our customers and a personal touch they can only get from Starbucks.”

The company hopes that allowing customers to redeem faster will help increase use of the program, while loyal and frequent customers are disappointed they will lose some valuation in some of the favourite redemptions like handcrafted beverages.

Members will continue to get free coffee and tea refills, birthday treats, and personalized offers including those Double Star Days. Needless to say, if you have a lot of points, now might not be the worst time to use some up.

Source: Starbucks Rewards

Winston is currently a freelance technology and travel broadcast journalist, consultant, and is the creator and founder of Master Travellr—Canada’s destination for travel news, guides, and budget recommendations.

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