How Rainbow Foods’ Fresh Perks Rewards Program Works

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Rainbow Foods has introduced a new loyalty program called Fresh Perks which replaces Fuel Perks, the previous program. I’m a firm believer in maximizing the benefits available to you, and understanding a store’s loyalty program is an important component of that.

This Rainbow Foods Fresh Perks program began April 28, 2013 and has replaced the Roundy’s Rewards card (which, as of this writing, can still be used at Copps and Pick ‘n Save). Advertised benefits include:

  • additional cash back promotions throughout the year
  • card-loadable manufacturer coupons
  • extra Double Daze coupon events
  • savings from various Clubs (details below)

You can watch a video on Rainbow Fresh Perks on YouTube for a brief overview.

How to Sign Up for Rainbow Foods Fresh Perks

If you are a Rainbow Foods customer and had a Roundy’s Rewards card, then you probably received a new Fresh Perks Rewards card in the mail. Mine came with a flyer that asked me to opt-in to an email list and print a $5 off coupon for a future grocery trip.

If you did not receive a card in the mail, you can sign up for a card at customer service or the Fresh Perks kiosk in the store.

Although the current promotions tied to the Fresh Perks program are only valid through 7/10, I fully expect that they’ll extend the program. If they don’t for some reason, then I imagine they’ll offer a replacement program (but launching these things is not cheap so I imagine they’ll stick with it for awhile).

Cash Back Rewards

To me, this is the most notable new feature of this program. You earn 1% cash back for each $50 you spend in the qualifying date range (currently that range is 4/28 – 7/10/13). The spending threshold is cumulative, meaning it adds up each time you shop with your card during the date range.

Here’s what you could earn:

  • Spend $400-$449, get $4 cash back
  • Spend $450-$499, get $4.50 cash back
  • Spend $500-$549, get $5 cash back
  • etc.

Some purchases are excluded (alcohol, tobacco, pharmacy, Rainbow gift cards, stamps, etc.). The amount spent is calculated before tax and after store discounts and store coupons (I am checking to see if it is calculated based on shelf price or sale price).

Fuel Perks Ends

The cash back rewards offer is a loose replacement to the fuel discount available through the old Fuel Perks program. By way of comparison, you earned 2% back in fuel discounts, but Rainbow Foods executives say the average customer bought 10 gallons of gas (half the amount allowed) with the fuel discount earned from purchases. Therefore, the executives say the programs are equal in terms of customer earning potential.

Personally, I disagree that the earning potential is the same for two reasons. First, I used to be able to earn something when I’d cumulatively spent $50. Now I need to spend $400 to get something. That’s a material difference. Second, I would redeem my fuel discount on 15-18 gallons of gas, not the 10 gallons quoted by a Rainbow Foods executive, which means I earned more than the 1% offered in this program.

If you have outstanding Fuel Perks credit on your old Roundy’s Rewards card, you can redeem it at the pump through 6/30/13.

How to Redeem

You’ll have two weeks to redeem your reward once the earning period is up (the current two week redemption window is (7/21-8/3). Your rewards can be redeemed on any transaction equal to or greater than the amount of rewards earned, and you should just be able to scan your Fresh Perks Rewards card to get your savings applied.

On one hand this is simpler than needing to redeem your rewards at a different retailer (especially since I didn’t have many participating gas stations near me anymore). But, on the other hand, having a short redemption window in the middle of a vacation-filled summer will likely works in Rainbow Foods’ favor, not in ours as customers. We will remind you when the redemption period approaches.

Manufacturer Coupons

The program claims that you can load manufacturer’s coupons onto your card. You will need to be logged in to do so. Do note that these coupons will not double.

I compared these to the digital coupons available on SavingStar.com. They are different coupons so we should be able to load both types onto a single Fresh Perks card.

Double Double Daze Coupon Events

Fresh Perks cardholders will have access to extra Double Double Daze events on selected dates throughout the year where you can double up to 10 manufacturer’s coupons per transaction instead of the usual 5.

Let’s be super clear about this and say: on a typical double coupon day anyone with a qualifying transaction can have 5 coupons doubled. No Fresh Perks card required. We will see some future Double Double Daze (Rainbow-speak for a day when you can double 10 coupons instead of 5 per qualifying transaction) that will require you to present a Fresh Perks card. Without the card only 5 coupons would double.

Club Promotions

The Club programs under Fresh Perks are the same as what we saw under the Fuel Perks program. During each promotional period Rainbow Foods runs a handful of Club programs that reward you for purchasing specific products. The following are available through 7/10:

Fresh Express Salad Club – Buy 10, Get $3 on your next purchase

Huggies Diaper Club – Buy 6, Get 7th Free on your next purchase

Pet Club – Spend $50, Get $5 on your next purchase

Your turn: What questions and comments (respectful, even if displeased, comments) do you have about this new program?

Comments

  1. Therese_S says

    I have to say that i'm disappointed at Rainbow on this new promotion. Spending $400 to get back $4 in such a SHORT time frame is a lot harder than the old way of spending $50 to get $0.10 off gas that I can use right away or save up for a month.

    I can only hope that Rainbow reviews this new loyalty card and compare its use versus the Fuel Perks card and make some adjustments to keep LOYAL customers.

    • jo says

      I agree Therese but when math done for the fuelperks program $400 soent got you 20 cents off a gallon and 25 max gallons was $5.00

      • says

        Roundy’s execs would say that the entire shop period (from April through July) would require someone to spend $37.xx per week at Rainbow. It is definitely a promotion for the regular shopper and many Pocketeers aren’t there every week, but only when the deals suit their family.

    • Dave Scher says

      I think the fuel rewards was costing Roundy’s too much, so they shined up this complicated crappy card up to save money for the corporation. I am most unhappy.

  2. Tammy S says

    I go to rainbow for only the double coupons. I also would use the fuel when my tank was empty therefore getting my moneys worth. I have .30 off to use before the end of this month which is a great savings. Yes I will miss the fuel perks.

  3. Alissa says

    To be clear, manufacturer coupons loaded onto your Fresh Perks card will not double, is this correct?

    • Cheri A says

      I will likely not be shopping at Rainbow much anymore. It was not convenient to redeem the fuel perks anymore, and this cash-back program doesn’t appeal to me for the same reasons as stated. I think my dollars are better spent using Cub’s frequent $5 of $50 coupons with the few coupons that I am using for package goods to earn the fuel discounts on their card at the Holiday stations.

      • Debbie Pfiffner says

        Cheri – don’t you find that Cub is more expensive than Rainbow?? Cub has Little Debbie Cakes that my husband loves that Rainbow doesn’t carry and I have to pick up at Cub, so I tried doing all my shopping at Cub for a few weeks, and my grocery bills were an average of $20 or more than they are at Rainbow.

  4. Heidi says

    Do you know how many transactions we can do on these new cards? Previously after 7 transactions using your Roundys card it maxed out for the day. Do you know if it’s the same for this card as well?? Because if you can only get 10 coupons per transaction to double by using your card, that would mean only 7 transactions if the same as before. Does anyone know??

  5. Cheri Allan says

    I was just able to load a couple of coupons on to my card from the Rainbow site, but there really aren’t many there. And the information says that coupons loaded on a card do not double, only paper coupons. :( So what’s the advantage in that?

  6. Rosemary says

    If I used 5 of the same coupons at one store can I go to another store and have the same 5 coupon double too? I heard the fresh perk track your spending so you’re not able to.

    • says

      Rosemary – Rainbow Foods’ coupon policy limits the number of like coupons to 5 per household per day. I personally wouldn’t go to a different store to bend this rule.

  7. Nancy says

    I’m probably going to start shopping at Cub for the fuel perks. I used to save up my points so I would get $1.00 off per fill up. I would wait until my tank was empty to do this. The new Rainbow perks are not as evident to the point I won’t even know when I receive them. I think Rainbow management screwed up on this one.

  8. Debbie Pfiffner says

    Honestly, I like the new Fresh Perks program because I NEVER used one single fuel reward. We always get our gas at SA because we earn really good rewards with SA’s program, and besides there are no BP gas stations around us, so we would have to go out of our way to get gas. I have already earned $6 so far on the 1% back, plus I’m pretty close to earning the $5 on the Pet Rewards. I also got a random $7 off purchase on groceries a few weeks ago for purchasing Lever products and I wasn’t even aware there was a promotion, the products were just less expensive at Rainbow. Cub has the fuel rewards, but I think their meat is not as high quality as Rainbow and I really don’t want to shop 2 places at a time.

  9. Michael La Vant says

    I live in Illinois, where the Mariano’s Fresh Market stores were introduced just three years ago.

    The reward card here does the same thing as ‘Fresh Perks.’ However, it is ugly (dull brown). Why can’t you revise the color into something more attractive, like the “Fresh Perks’ card?

    Thanks.

  10. Cindy Mahoney says

    Am disappointed the Fuel Perks program has ended. Even 10 cents off a gallon with the high gas prices helped. Also will not find FreshPerks any use to me as I don’t spend this much on groceries ANYWHERE. Would rather you discontinue the coupon booklets and automatically give us the discount at the register as the item is scanned…it saves money printing the coupon books and hassel for both the customer and the grocery checker in using them.

  11. Bee in Watertown says

    I’ve been seriously thinking of taking our (for two people mind you) $6,000 + per year in Pick-N-Save spending to another store in Watertown. There have been several reasons for my wanting to move.

    1) Parking lot is horrible with spaces too small. My truck does not fit, especially with trailer mirrors. I load into my cab, not my box, making it extremely difficult to get groceries loaded. In addition, placing the main entrance in the middle makes people walk farther. This doesn’t particularly bother me to walk farther but handicapped and elderly having to walk that much farther is wrong. It was a stupid parking lot design.

    2) The deli and meat departments are seriously understaffed. We wait frequently at both. Rumor has it that it’s hard to hire because it is a thankless and underpaid job.

    3) The checkouts leave no room between them and the main grocery aisles, making it very difficult to navigate, especially on busy days. On top of that they are seldom fully staffed, even on busy days. Roundy’s management will tell you otherwise but they are lying. Even if registers are staffed they’ll be half 20 items or less and half full, and often times the 20 items or less cashiers are standing there doing nothing because no one is in their line.

    4) The self checkouts frequently break down.

    5) This one is recent, but they changed the entrance and it is much, much harder to navigate through there. I was told by several employee’s that it was corporates decision and that it is better now than it was before. Well, (here comes vulgarity!) I call ********! It’s horrible and a poor decision.

    So, what has kept me there? The fuel perks and proximity. Now, without fuel perks, I’ll just drive the extra couple miles to one of four other grocery stores and one other meat market in Watertown. I’m sure Roundy’s doesn’t care about my pithy $6,000 but that’s a lot of groceries for two people. If I can, I’ll bring others with me.

    [comment edited]

  12. Rick says

    Stupid idea for PickNsave to do this. Fuel perks are the main reason I will shop there. Especially at these gas prices!! If I want to earn 1% on food I could go to Woodmans and pay 5% less!! Pick N Save is cutting their own throat by discontinueing the fuel perks program. Very sad.

  13. Watertown Employee says

    I work at the Pick ‘n Save store in Watertown and I would like to address a few of your concerns. In the parking lot if you have a hard time parking your vehicle there is no problem with parking your truck on the side of the drive that goes down the middle of the parking lot. This way you can simply pull up to the curb and pull straight out when you leave. If you look you will notice that there are no signs prohibiting you from parking there. Secondly I understand your concern with the checkout lines and the reason for the number of express lanes is a Roundy’s requirement. We are required to keep open a certain ratio of express lanes to keep people with smaller orders moving and to funnel larger orders into specific lanes that should have baggers. At any given time in the store while there may only be a few checkout lanes open there are typically at least 4 or 5 other people we can call up in an instant to check people if we get busy. If you watch he front end long enough you will notice that typically we do not stay busy for long and are only busy in short bursts. These bursts require calling additional people up front to help check. It would be a waste of money to have additional cashiers on staff when most of their shift would be spent standing around. Lastly the switch in the produce department has actually been positive for the store. The only downfall to opening up the entrance area is that we lost the connection on the left side by the area leading to the dry food section of the store. What we gained was more space near the entrance. When you come in you are no longer forced to go left OR right. You can now go straight as well and there are more areas for you to stop and get yourself ready to shop. Previously if you stopped in that area you’d have a line of people behind you waiting to get in the store. Please feel free to reply and I will attempt to address your concerns.

  14. shar says

    I am disappointed in this change and will be shopping elsewhere. This all sounds way to complicated for the elderly.

  15. Brianna says

    The Fuel Perks are okay but stores stop accepting them left and right. The fact that you have to wait in line to pay inside and use it deters me from using it more than a few times a year. The fact that loaded coupons don’t double is ridiculous and nulls any other benefits. 1% back is a joke, it sounds good but amounts to a few cents for most of us. I only go to Copp’s for their freebies and <$1 deals on double double daze. I found doubling most coupons was less of a deal than a non-doubled coupon at Woodman's. I would be interested to know how good of a deal the Huggies promotion is.

  16. Keith says

    I thought the Fuel Perks was the best fuel rewards program in town. Mine would accumulate and I was able to get .20 to .25 off a gallon when I finally accumulated enough points. Now that it is ended, I’ll shop more at Costco and Sams. Their gas is ALWAYS almost 10 cents cheaper per gallon than Holiday or SA. Fresh Perks doesn’t cut it with me.

  17. Tony says

    I agree with the folks that think rainbow is loosing money with the gas perks. and of course it was the only thing worth it on the card. But does it really matter because before the card came out their was not any thing given all. It is funny though how when ever a company comes out with something for the people and then they have to give a little they cancel it.
    I wonder what the people that make the descissions at rainbow think is more important money or people shopping in the store?
    And here is a final thought for all of you — My mom who shops at rainbow regularly told me that one morning she was looking for cored pineapple and could not fine any on the shelf and when she asked a manager if she could get some they told her the person that cores pineapples does not come in until the afternoon.
    “PineApple Corer” Man where do I sign up for that position ?

  18. Mike says

    I too am disappointed in this new program. I live and work equal distance from 2 Copps stores and work the same distance from a beautiful Hyvee store. The Customer service at Hyvee has been so great i feel that i need to start doing more with their fuel perks program. Most of the products they give the fuel perks are products i buy anyway and i am there for lunch in the resturant at least once a week. I hadnt changed earlier because i was loyal to Copps but i guess it is time to change.

  19. Andy says

    This really bugs me. I’m a college student and my grandmother gave me her extra Roundy’s card so that I would be able to build up points faster using her account and be able to save gas money. I wonder how many customers Roundy’s will lose doing this.

  20. Lou Fragale says

    The Rainbow Foods’ Fresh Perks Rewards Loyalty Program was a disappointment. The program started just as abruptly as the fuel perks program ended. I wonder how many dollars Roundys was able to pocket on their spread sheet by cancelling the fuel perks program the way that they did, I know they kept about $40 of my perks. Now with this new program, the fine print was way too much effort for way too little benefit. When I asked employees at the store to help me understand it, they had no clue how it was going to work. Now today I asked about how I could redeem my Fresh Perks and they said that loyalty program was over and there is now a new Loyalty program and that I lost all of the points that I had saved up. Oh well, there goes another $20. My loyalty to Chairman Bob is not paying off too well. I see how my loyalty to the store is more reliable than the store’s loyalty is to the customer.

  21. George says

    I really used & liked the gas program. one registration, one card & was easy to use.
    Now, Every time I get a Giveaway coupon, I have to go online and use my Name and
    password to try & get all the benefits of the program but, its a pain! Had to change
    password once already & now it doesn’t work again. that is it for me. Ask Woody ?

  22. Chris says

    I used to do most of my grocery shopping with Rainbow when they had the Fuel Perks program. Since then, I switched to Cub Foods. The only time I shop at Rainbow now is when I have manufacturer coupons to use during Double Daze days. And even with that, I probably averaged around one shopping trip to Rainbow per 3-4 month period instead of a few times a week.

    • lauren says

      On the card that has the pin numbers, there is a website that you must go to and create an account. then you can enter all of your pin numbers!! Hope this helps!

  23. Pat says

    I agree with all of the negative comments above! We used and enjoyed the Fuel Perks program and really dislike this new Fresh Perks card system. I missed out on the short time frame for redeeming my points so ended up with nothing. Hate, hate, hate it!

  24. Dawn says

    Can you make this ‘fresh perks’ program anymore confusing… I am totally confused how I earn or redeeme points. I know they kept over $50 of my Roundy perks. This program… way too much effort for way too little benefit. When I asked employees at the store to help me understand it, they had no clue how it was going to work. When I asked how to redeem my Fresh Perks and they said that loyalty program and new one will start soon. What?
    This card is enough to make me stop shopping at Rainbow- I loved my Roundy card, this fresh perks… I agree with all above- Hate, hate, hate it!

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