Shop smart at Shoppers Drug Mart

Here’s how to redeem those points and earn savings on the items you need.



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After using my Shoppers Drug Mart card for four years I recently redeemed my reward (“optimum”) points for $250-worth of gaming items for my PlayStation 3. Although Shoppers’ reward program is a simple one—for every $1 you spend, you get 10 optimum points—knowing how to maximize your value, for this or any other rewards program, requires some knowledge.

In the Shoppers case, the largest amount of points you can collect before having to redeem is 95,000. (Normally, that would get you $170 worth of stuff.) But did I spend $9,500 at Shoppers? Definitely not. Here’s how I did it. Follow these suggestions and you can, too.

Know what you need

Focus on everyday items you know you’ll use. Stock up on toiletries like shampoo, conditioner, soap and toothpaste—items that have no or very distant expiry dates. And when you buy them, get them on sale. Some of these items can be bought more cheaply at discount stores like Walmart and Zellers, but I’d argue that the points program makes buying at Shoppers worth it.

Pay attention to points events

This is where it gets trickier. It’s one thing to buy something on sale, but another to get as many points as you possibly can on that item while you’re at it. Take advantage of points events like points days that multiply the value of every dollar spent.

One points event Shopper’s has every few months are its 20x points days. This means that the number of points you regularly receive is multiplied by 20, so $X * 10 * 20. There’s usually a minimum purchase amount attached to points days in order to qualify for the multiple points bonus. For example, on a recent 20x points day, you needed to spend $75 or more on items before tax. If you spent the minimum of $75, you’d get 15,000 points in one go. To reach the maximum points level in one go, you’d have to spend $475.

Check out the flyer once a week and it’ll tell you what points promotions are going on and when they happen. Make sure to read the fine print of the promotion because some items don’t qualify for reward points.

Know when to redeem

I mentioned that the highest points redemption level is for $170, so how did I get $250-worth of items?

I waited for Shoppers’ once-a-year points redemption event that takes place in December. There are other points redemption events throughout the year, but they only offer a bump up to a $200 redemption. (Note, there are specific rules on how many times you can redeem your points during those events.)

If you’re going to spend that money, why not maximize your return? The chart below shows that the more points you gather, the higher value you get for your dollar. Keep collecting points, but wait until the right time to use them.

Points Required Reward Value Dollar Value of the Points You Get for Spending $100
8,000 $10 $1.25
22,000 $30 $1.36
38,000 $60 $1.58
50,000 $85 $1.70
95,000 $170 $1.80

6 comments on “Shop smart at Shoppers Drug Mart

  1. Your article mostly makes sense in terms of how to maximize the Optimum program. Except, you say that you'd rather spend more at Shoppers to collect points. Why would you pay for overpriced products for four years to then buy games for a PS3? Wow! Have you done the math on how much you've overspent at Shoppers?

    I live in front of a Shoppers and I very rarely shop there because even their sale prices are not competitive.


  2. I agree with Joey. And to add to his point about overspending at Shoppers to get the points… If you had watched for sales or took advantage of other store's promotional events, you probably could have gotten those games for a lot cheaper than $250. I used to be an avid Optimum point collector but I quit cold turkey when I realized that the full price I pay at the grocery store is less than the sale price at Shoppers for most of the items in my bathroom. Now, I only go to Shoppers for specific items I see on sale in the flyer – and only if it is actually a good deal.


  3. While I find prices at Shoppers high, careful shopping has turned up some deals for me and because we have high prescription costs each year, those points are very helpful buying things we need but are expensive anyway. For example, we use the Sonic toothbrushes for my hubby's gum disease, and the replacement heads are quite expensive. I use points when they go on sale to reduce the costs to below the lower prices at other stores – I win. We get great service from the Shoppers Pharmacy and point on top for something we must have anyway.


  4. We are avid optimum points users, and we are very careful how we spend our money at Shoppers. The other posts are correct in that prices are generally higher at Shoppers, that is why we go through the flyers to ensure we buy items that are a good price. More and more Shoppers are selling food now, and there are a number of staples that they sell at prices that are lower elsewhere. As Josephine said in the article, we take advantage of the bonus points days to build up our points. We never cash in until we hit the 95,000 points, and we use the points closer to Christmas to reduce the extra costs that come at Christmas. Finally, we love having stores close to our home and we want to frequent them when possible. We have a strong relationship with the pharmacist, and we appreciate that close proximity.


  5. what happens once I reach $170 can I earn more than $170


    • Curious at a answer, Here’s
      ‘Contact Us’ sh dr mt found at

      Customer Service
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      Your question:
      What is the maximum number of points that a member can have on the Optimum card?

      There is no maximum number of points. Customers can gather as many points as they wish. The only restriction is that customers can only redeem a maximum of 95 000 points per transaction.

      Did the response answer your question?r
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