Y'know, I figured out that these 'loyalty cards' that you have to pay for before you get the discount they offer, are a total ripoff.
Think about it.. They give you an average of 10% off, right? And it costs $10-15 a YEAR to purchase?
The average consumer isn't going to take advantage of all the sales and such that come along - so let's say for argument the card costs $10 and the discount works out to 10% across the board - which is basically what the irewards thing costs.
$10 to buy the card.
It will take you $100 in purchases before you start to see an actual discount, right? And you can't buy anything anywhere else or else you're losing money.
BUT! It will take another $1000 in purchases to break even on the $100 you had to spend to even start earning the discount. So, $1110 later, you finally start making money on the deal. But by that point, you're well into next year and you've already had to re-purchase your discount card.
It's not a good deal. Paying for a discount just ruins the whole thing.
I'll never pay retail for books again after I visited that store beside the World's biggest bookstore. They have a wicked selection of books, dvds and magazines and usually at least 50% off cover price (they are used but who cares?). I could drop a few hundred dollars in that place no problem (if I had a few hundred dollars to drop)