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Starbucks Rewards Program devaluations

Starbucks Rewards Program devaluations

Old Feb 22, 16, 8:39 am
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Starbucks Rewards Program devaluations

http://morestars.starbucks.com

Rewards are revenue-based beginning in April.

Now 2 stars per $1 instead of 1 star per visit. Free drinks are now 125 stars instead of 12.

For a black coffee drinker like me I currently get a free drink every ~$30. With the new system I will need to spend over $60.


What will happen to the Stars I have in my account when the new Starbucks Rewards launches?
You’ll keep all of the Stars you’ve already earned. When the new Starbucks Rewards launches in April, your Stars will multiply to reflect the update. Every 1 Star you have will be multiplied by 11 when we transition to the new program. For example, if you have 10 Stars the day before launch, you will have 110 Stars when the new Starbucks Rewards launches.
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Old Feb 22, 16, 8:49 am
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Just read the email. Pretty stiff devaluation if you're only buying a single, lower cost drink per visit but much better if you're buying an entire meal or drinks for the whole office.

No mention of change in star requirements for Gold qualification that I can see but 30 stars under the new system seems unlikely to remain unchanged.
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Old Feb 22, 16, 9:29 am
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Originally Posted by rustykettel View Post
Just read the email. Pretty stiff devaluation if you're only buying a single, lower cost drink per visit but much better if you're buying an entire meal or drinks for the whole office.

No mention of change in star requirements for Gold qualification that I can see but 30 stars under the new system seems unlikely to remain unchanged.
300 stars to qualify for Gold, so I assume the same to requalify.
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Old Feb 22, 16, 9:37 am
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Hah darn it, you guys beat me! Just saw this in my stock app newsreader

Looks like the days of MR (mocha run? macchiato run?) are over?

Another link for interested people to read

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/starbucks-tightens-rewards-program-rules-140016632.html
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Old Feb 22, 16, 9:41 am
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I suppose now the super elites won't be able to complain that their drink upgrade was taken by a drink runner once DQM are replaced with DQD.
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Old Feb 22, 16, 10:37 am
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Originally Posted by Eastbay1K View Post
I suppose now the super elites won't be able to complain that their drink upgrade was taken by a drink runner once DQM are replaced with DQD.
Witty.
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Old Feb 22, 16, 10:44 am
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I usually buy a drink that runs just over $5 depending on the region/store, so the change doesn't affect me in a negative way. Where it helps me is when I get my wife one on the weekend as well. I was spending $9 and only getting one star.
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Old Feb 22, 16, 11:45 am
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Yeah, this doesn't generally hurt me.
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Old Feb 22, 16, 11:50 am
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Originally Posted by bsdstone View Post
I usually buy a drink that runs just over $5 depending on the region/store, so the change doesn't affect me in a negative way. Where it helps me is when I get my wife one on the weekend as well. I was spending $9 and only getting one ★.
Split it into two purchases, and you'd be getting two ★. You can add as many cards as you want to your account, your wife's and yours.

Of course, this devaluation is meant to equalize the point system and close loopholes allowing things like:

Spend $24 on 12 short coffees, earn 1 (overpriced IMO) $8 salad. ( 33.3% redemption rate ). You could also just get another $2 coffee free ( 8.3% ).

Now, that same reward will always cost $62.5, so redemptions range from 3.2% – 12.8% ( $2 coffee – $8 salad ).

It's a HUGE devaluation for points seekers and bargain hunters, but a slight advantage to people who spend more than $5.25 / visit.

Can't say that I blame Starbucks for doing this, but essentially they're penalizing plain coffee drinkers and rewarding Fancy-drink-buyers ( higher margins on those drinks ) who typically only need to buy one $5 drink to get the same reward.

EDIT: There is also one slightly annoying thing... I imagine Starbucks will be rounding down to whole dollars spent. So, if you're spending $2.98, that will be 4 ★, not 6. If they do proper rounding, I'll have more respect for Starbucks, though. This also would affect lower dollar-value purchases far greater than larger purchases. 5 Venti Frapps @ $5.98 ( $29.90 ) will net 50★. 15 short Coffees at $1.98 ( $29.70 ) nets 30 ★, which is a major penalty.

EDIT 2: I take it back. Starbucks will calculate ★ by the penny, not the dollar ( they call it partial ★ ). So, in real terms, it's 0.02 ★/˘ ★ will also expire after 6 months, instead of an earned reward expiring after 30 days.

Last edited by bluemeansgo; Feb 22, 16 at 12:09 pm
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Old Feb 22, 16, 12:04 pm
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I generally spend about $3.50 a visit and when I get 12 stars, that's what I redeem it for. However, with the devaluation, I'm less likely to visit Starbucks. The program was one of the reasons I went out of my way to but something from Starbucks. They will see less of me and my money in the coming year. But I'm sure they factored that into their projections.
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Old Feb 22, 16, 12:06 pm
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Originally Posted by bluemeansgo View Post
Split it into two purchases, and you'd be getting two stars. You can add as many cards as you want to your account, your wife's and yours.

Of course, this devaluation is meant to equalize the point system and close loopholes allowing things like:

Spend $24 on 12 short coffees, earn 1 (overpriced IMO) $8 salad. ( 33.3% redemption rate ). You could also just get another $2 coffee free ( 8.3% ).

Now, that same reward will always cost $62.5, so redemptions range from 3.2% – 12.8% ( $2 coffee – $8 salad ).

It's a HUGE devaluation for points seekers and bargain hunters, but a slight advantage to people who spend more than $5.25 / visit.

Can't say that I blame Starbucks for doing this, but essentially they're penalizing plain coffee drinkers and rewarding Fancy-drink-buyers ( higher margins on those drinks ) who typically only need to buy one $5 drink to get the same reward.

EDIT: There is also one slightly annoying thing... I think Starbucks will be rounding down to whole dollars spend. So, if you're spending $2.98, that will be 4 stars, not 6. If they do proper rounding, I'll have more respect for Starbucks, though. This also would affect lower dollar-value purchases far greater than larger purchases. 5 Venti Frapps @ $5.98 ( $29.90 ) will net 50 stars. 15 short Coffees at $1.98 ( $29.70 ) nets 30 stars, which is a major penalty.
Can't say that I blame Starbucks for doing it either. It makes sense.

I'm surprised that the margins are higher on "Fancy Drinks" than drip coffee. Where have you heard that, out of curiosity.
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Old Feb 22, 16, 12:17 pm
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Originally Posted by bluemeansgo View Post
Spend $24 on 12 short coffees, earn 1 (overpriced IMO) $8 salad. ( 33.3% redemption rate ). You could also just get another $2 coffee free ( 8.3% ).
Until the devaluation occurs, 12 tall coffees (in my experience) can equate to one beer or wine at the locations which now offer them.
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Old Feb 22, 16, 12:26 pm
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Frustrating

Imagine what fun it'll be figuring out how many rewards it'll take to get a drink. When they introduce 'flexible rewards' I can imagine that a single reward will only be good for a tall black coffee on Wednesday nights after 7. Grande Latte on Monday morning? Better plan on spending 2.5+ rewards.

They already tested some concepts when they started to charge for soy milk. What do you think the upgrade cost will be per sugar? Cream? Cups? Choice of drink?

Imagine what it'll be like when people have to change their item several times when ordering..."Oh, I'm sorry, ma'am, you don't have enough rewards, but I could sell you rewards to make up the difference..."

I hope their ordering app works as well as the other booking apps out there...
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Old Feb 22, 16, 12:32 pm
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So in the UK I get one gold star for each transaction, whether I buy 1 or 100 drinks. So, if I am buying 3 items I ask them to process it as 3 separate transactions to get 3 stars. It will be interesting if they roll this out into the UK too, and I guess it explains why the nagging notes about updating the app.
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Old Feb 22, 16, 1:41 pm
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Originally Posted by kipper View Post
300 stars to qualify for Gold, so I assume the same to requalify.
Thanks! I missed that the first time through. So $150 to qualify/requal vs around $90 now, perhaps as low as ~$60 for plain coffee.
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