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Canadian Tire swaps out its "money" for loyalty cards program
June 8, 2012 - 5:17pm
Since 1958, Canadian Tire has been known for its "Canadian tire money" - brightly coloured bills that are valid tender for purchases at any of the company's stores. However, it recently made the decision to phase out the currency in favor of a loyalty-card based payment processing initiative.
According to CreditCards.com Canada, this move comes after Canadian Tire money has become something of a pop culture icon over the course of the past several decades. Displaying one of Canadian Tire's mascots, Sandy McTire, it is available in a wide range of denominations, from 5 cents to $2.
Loyalty cards have proven to be an effective marketing method for other retail businesses, and Canadian Tire is looking to incorporate them into its future strategies. Liz Hamilton, a Toronto spokeswoman for the company, commented on this.
"The average Canadian has nine loyalty cards," Hamilton said. "While the money has a place in Canadian hearts, we're hearing that people want a loyalty card from us as well. The real difference is that you'll get more money this way." She went on to mention that while Canadian Tire money allows its users to get back only 0.4 per cent of their purchase's value, the new cards will allow 3 per cent to be recouped.
However, Canadian Tire money's cultural impact extends to monetary value outside of the store. Other businesses have even accepted it as currency, such as Rogue Kitchen and WetBar in Vancouver, British Columbia. The business' owner, Eli Gerskovitch, uses the Canadian Tire money to purchase supplies for the maintenance and upkeep of his restaurant.
"We use every penny of it we get," Gerskovitch told the news source. "We have a big repairs budget, so this actually works well for us."
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