Sainsbury’s halves Nectar card points payout

Sainsbury's sign

Anyone with a Nectar card shopping at Sainsbury’s this weekend is going to be disappointed. On Saturday the retail giant halved the number of Nectar points its customers will earn from now on in-store.

As of Saturday, instead of getting two points for every £1 you spend at Sainsbury’s you will now only get one. And shoppers are no longer encouraged to use their own bags as the Nectar point you got for doing so has also been dropped.

So is it time to change where you shop? Evidence emerged last week that some shoppers were already thinking of doing so, with others already having made the move since Sainsbury’s announced the changes to Nectar last October.

“Rather than exchanging for offers that Sainsbury promote we decided, and have for a number of years, to save the points we accrued during each year and use them each Christmas,” says Leeds-based John Salt.

“Sadly, in future this yearly event may not be as much fun as it used to be given the reduced allocation from our weekly trip.”

He adds: “Where we live there is currently an Aldi under construction. We may be quite tempted to forfeit our Nectar points and join the refugees from the higher end stores who are trying the Aldi or Lidl experience.”

The discounted stores such as Aldi and Lidl have made shoppers more focused on the price of goods – but for those who continue to value loyalty points both Tesco and Morrisons have schemes that reward.

Tesco’s Clubcard scheme effectively offers a 1% discount on shopping at the supermarket if not swapped for special rewards.

You earn one point for every £1 spent on shopping in-store or online, or £2 spent with partners Esso and Eon. Each point amounts to 1p, so spending £250 in Tesco will give you a £2.50 voucher.

By exchanging points for partner offers, such as meals out and day trips, you may double or even quadruple their value.

Every £2.50 voucher can be swapped for £10 vouchers for restaurants, travel and days out. You can also make points go further by cashing in on “Clubcard Boost” offers. These enable you to double the value of points when shopping at particular times of the year, typically over the Christmas period.

The Morrisons scheme, introduced six months ago, compares like-for-like products at Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Asda, Aldi and Lidl.

If they are found to be cheaper anywhere else, Morrisons will put the difference in points on your card. For every 1p difference, you’ll get 10 Match & More points.

This may sound a lot, but each point is worth 0.1p.

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