Press Releases

Shopping Tips to Make Back-to-School Dollars Go Further

Aug 19, 2010

Seasonal shopping periods are prime time to take advantage of loyalty points

TORONTO, Aug. 19 /CNW/ - Collecting loyalty points and finding quality items at affordable prices is a great equation for making back-to-school dollars go further.  Canadians will find this winning combination at more than 1,180 Shoppers Drug Mart and Pharmaprix stores, where additional bonus point offers are on the books until September 3 in celebration of Shoppers Optimum's 10th birthday.

"Shoppers Drug Mart offers a vast selection of back-to-school essentials - from must-have items like highlighters, binders, backpacks and locks, to stainless steel water bottles, hand sanitizers and healthy snacks," says Tammy Smitham, Director, Communications & Corporate Affairs, Shoppers Drug Mart.  "In addition to great value, variety and quality, Shoppers Optimum members can benefit further by earning points on their back-to-school purchases - and during 10th birthday celebrations, they can earn even more points while being eligible to win extraordinary prizes."

As part of Optimum's 10th birthday, Shoppers Drug Mart is giving away 10 million bonus points and 10 Ford Fiestas through two separate customer contests.  Now 10 years old and with 10 million program members, Shoppers Optimum remains one of Canada's most valuable loyalty points programs, offering 10 points for every dollar spent in store and numerous opportunities to earn bonus points. 

Valuable year-round tips to get the greatest points value:

  1. Collect points on big seasonal spends like back-to-school and holiday gift shopping.
  2. Redeem points for on-sale items where possible for added value.
  3. Take advantage of special bonus points promotions (e.g. 10X points events) to collect points even faster.

Optimum has given out billions of points over the past decade.  Every second across Canada, a product is redeemed using Optimum points at a Shoppers Drug Mart or Pharmaprix store.  And every 30 seconds, another Canadian signs up for an Optimum card - 8 out of 10 of which are women. 

As part of this month's Optimum birthday celebrations, Shoppers Drug Mart is conducting an informal online game where members can determine their 'Optimum personality' ( and have a chance to win 10 million Optimum points.  To date, more than 50,000 program members have participated. Almost 12% of participants indicated they've been loyal Optimum members since the program launched in 2000.  Almost 40% identified with the 'saver' personality, the savvy shopper who accumulates points quickly and saves them up for just the right occasion, and 10% said they were 'indulgers, splurging on items like fine fragrances and chocolates to treat themselves.  The 'mom' personality, who collects and spends points on baby purchases but treats herself to the occasional well-deserved splurge, was a fit for 5% of participants.   Another 5% identified with the 'techie' personality, a web-savvy shopper who receives member-only bonus offers via email.  

What items do people purchase with points?
People redeem Optimum points for everyday household essentials and personal care items like shampoo and toothpaste.  Last year, over 660,000 tubes of toothpaste were redeemed through the Optimum program along with more than 570,000 shaving items, 490,000 packages of vitamins, and 458,000 bottles of shampoo.  Other Shoppers Optimum members chose indulgences for their redemptions, evidenced by the more than 252,000 boxes of chocolate and over 160,000 lipsticks.

Who redeems the most points in Canada?
Ontarians redeem the most Optimum points in Canada, with Toronto being the top redeeming city (Mississauga is 3rd, London is 8th and Ottawa is 10th). The 2nd highest redeeming city in Canada is Calgary, Alberta.  Winnipeg, Manitoba, is the 4th highest, with Montreal, Quebec close behind in 5th. Other notable redeeming cities include Edmonton (6th) and Vancouver (7th).

Interestingly, when asked on Facebook how they would spend 10 million bonus Optimum points, most respondents said they would share with family or charity.  Since, 2004, Optimum members have been able to donate their points to select charities and to date, close to 56 million points have been donated to more than 230 charities.  In addition, the generosity of Optimum members resulted more than 50 million Optimum points being donated to the Haiti earthquake relief effort earlier this year.

For more information about Optimum's 10th Birthday, please visit:

About Shoppers Optimum
The Shoppers Optimum program allows Canadians to earn and redeem points quickly and conveniently every time they make a purchase at Shoppers Drug Mart, Pharmaprix, Shoppers Simply Pharmacy, Pharmaprix Simplement Santé, Shoppers Home Health Care and Murale.  Shoppers Optimum cardholders collect 10 Shoppers Optimum points for every $1 spent on eligible products and services and Shoppers Optimum is known for its many bonus points offers, such as '20x points' events,  Shoppers Optimum Bonus Points on specially marked items and  'Spend Your Points' redemption events. Members can also opt to donate their Shoppers Optimum Points to charity, with more than 237 registered charities currently participating in the program. Shoppers Optimum membership is free and cardholders can easily monitor their points balance on their receipt and through online access to their Shoppers Optimum account. For more information about Shoppers Optimum, visit or

About Shoppers Drug Mart
Shoppers Drug Mart Corporation is one of the most recognized and trusted names in Canadian retailing.  The Company is the licensor of full-service retail drug stores operating under the name Shoppers Drug Mart (Pharmaprix in Québec).  With more than 1,180 Shoppers Drug Mart and Pharmaprix stores operating in prime locations in each province and two territories, the Company is one of the most convenient retailers in Canada.  The Company also licenses or owns more than 59 medical clinic pharmacies operating under the name Shoppers Simply Pharmacy (Pharmaprix Simplement Santé in Québec) and eight luxury beauty destinations operating as Murale.  As well, the Company also owns and operates 63 Shoppers Home Health Care stores, making it the largest Canadian retailer of home health care products and services.  In addition to its retail store network, the Company owns Shoppers Drug Mart Specialty Health Network Inc., a provider of specialty drug distribution, pharmacy and comprehensive patient support services, and MediSystem Technologies Inc., a provider of pharmaceutical products and services to long-term care facilities in Ontario and Alberta.

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Media Contacts:  
Sherry Lawlor
LexPR Canada 
Tammy Smitham
Shoppers Drug Mart