Become a smart shopper at Pick n Pay

Pick n Pay has just launched South Africa’s first major grocery-chain loyalty programme. According to CEO Nick Badminton, how much a customer spends at the stores (and also online—this will be rolled out shortly) will determine how big the reward for loyalty.

Pick n Pay (including franchise stores) records about 50-million transactions a month, which will translate into big savings for shoppers, collectively speaking, if they join the programme.

The concept is simple.
The “smart shopper” programme will see customers signing up, swiping cards and switching points (for cash, or for more goods, or as a donation) to spend or share their money once they have amassed 1 000 points. You get a “smart point” for every rand you spend, and for every 1 000 points you get R10 to spend on your next purchase. This equates to 1%, which is not huge, but in these tough times it’s definitely better than nothing.

According to Bronwen Rohland, Pick n Pay’s marketing and sustainability director, one point per every rand spent is comparable to other loyalty programmes, such as Clicks, The Body Shop and Exclusive Books.

Where shoppers will be able to score is on special offers and “shopping sprees”, where you can get double or triple points, and bonus points.

Discovery Vitality members will be pleased to know that smart shopper doesn’t have any impact on Vitality point-scoring: the two programmes will run in tandem. Although Pick n Pay press material says you need to swipe both cards to obtain benefits, in-store joining forms say the cards are linked so you can swipe just the smart shopper card to receive dual benefits. Rohland cleared this up for me by saying that although customers have to swipe both cards at the moment, a co-branded card will be launched soon.

Customers will also be able to donate to a charity or environmental cause when switching points, which is a quick-and-easy way to make a charitable donation. Or the points can be converted into cash.

Important points:

  • As with any loyalty card, you have to present it at the till to get points. No card, no swiping, no points.

  • Smart points are reflected on your card within five days of your purchase.

  • If you have to return your purchase for some reason, the points you received will be re-claimed. Returns and refunds mean sacrificed points.

  • You don’t get points on third-party payments like household service bills, traffic fines, tobacco products, Pick n Pay gift cards, Lotto, money transfers, financial services, fuel or prescriptions drugs.

  • You can’t use the card as a debit, credit or guarantee card.

  • There are no sign-up fees. Simply ask your cashier for a card and you’ll be given a short form to fill in, listing your name, address, contact number and identity number. You can choose whether to be contacted by mail, SMS or email. Pick n Pay’s anti-spam policy means that your details won’t be passed on to a third party.

  • There are no service charges or administrative costs; nor are there credit checks, because this isn’t a credit card.

  • Pick n Pay will alert you to special offers and shopping sprees, via your chosen form of communication.

  • You can use your smart shopper card in all Pick n Pay hypermarkets, supermarkets, family stores, clothing, express, liquor and pharmacy stores are. Online shopping will follow in a couple of months.

  • You’ll need to present your ID (or passport number, if you’re not a citizen) when you switch your points, change your details or manage your card to safeguard your points.

  • Use your account within 24 months or it will be closed.

  • Pick n Pay’s smart shopper launch partners are Coca-Cola, Kimberley-Clark, Nestle, Tiger, Unilever and Vodacom—other national suppliers will come on board post-launch.

  • For more information visit
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