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I’ve no idea when I signed-up for earning them, but my debit card is somehow linked to earning Payback-points. Out of the blue, one fine morning, I saw an email that said I had 6,800+ points linked to my Payback-account. Wow! I don’t know for how long the points had accumulated but I must have spent a fair bit to earn these many points! And I don’t even have one of those physical Payback cards.
I then checked the rewards catalog and found this particular item on the right redeemable for almost the exact number of points I had accumulated. D wasn’t interested in any of the other items on offer and hence I got to pick this bag. Delivery of the bag was prompt and in reality the bag indeed turned out to be an excellent choice. So, the points were worth it. But I didn’t spend any money that I normally wouldn’t spend just to earn points and get this bag. All of my monthly debit transactions are planned and happen on a single debit card. So, the points accumulated were only for spending money that I knew I’d be spending and which I’d saved-up in advance.
But of late, I’ve seen Payback-ads prompting you to spend your money at particular retail outlets within a particular time frame with a promise of earning 5-times the normal points. That’s a strict no-no in my book. I don’t and I won’t encourage you to spend money this way. No matter the amount of points earned or the tempting gift items on offer. These special spending schemes aren’t worth it.
Instead, I encourage you to sign-up for loyalty/reward points, plan your purchases out in advance, save-up for these purchases, and then let the points accumulate whenever you make that purchase. It’s OK if you have to wait a while to accumulate more points to get a particular gift item. But it’s definitely NOT OK to spend money that you don’t have just to accumulate more points to get a particular gift item. And finally, please don’t ever purchase points for cash!
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