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Big stores mount loyalty cards war in Australia

In the reward-points economy, it can take seven years and more than AUD11,000 (USD11,361) of spending to ”earn” a return flight to Melbourne. Even smaller rewards, such as free shipping, can require shoppers to spend more than AUD250.

The spending does not stop when the shopper receives a reward. Research for Australia’s largest department store Myer’s rewards program shows for every AUD20 voucher or discount sent to customers, they spend nearly AUD80 on redemption.

As bricks and mortar retailers battle haemorrhaging sales figures, many are turning to new or revamped rewards programs to win new customers. They are pinning their sales hopes on getting regular shoppers to spend more in return for points and gifts that range from free coffees to steep discounts.